No compensation for family of 'de facto director'

AN APPEAL to overturn a workers' compensation decision failed after it was revealed the worker was 'de facto' director.
Michele Debra Schepis appealed to the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission after an earlier decision of the Workers' Compensation Regulator that Anthony Schepis Snr was not a worker under the rules to receive workers compensation, but a director of the company. 

On July 23, 2014 Anthony Schepis Snr died in a single-vehicle accident on the way home from Eureka Village.

He was providing refrigeration and air conditioning maintenance services at the mining camp. 

In response to the workers compensation claim, the Workers' Compensation Regulator decided that he was not a worker of Coachcode who was contracted to do the work at the mining site.

Ms Schepis Snr appealed to the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission to overturn the regulators decision.  

According to the documents presented to the QIRC, Mr Schepis Snr and his wife resigned as directors of Coachcode in 2005 and his father, Aldo Schepis, took over until 2011 when his son Anthony Schepis Jnr took over.  

Mr Schepis Snr was bankrupt in 2007.

But according to QIRC Deputy President Daniel O'Connor, Mr Schepis Jnr was nothing more than a 'rubber stamp' for his father who was in control of the companies finances.

"Having considered the totality of the evidence, I accept the submission of the respondent that Mr Schepis Snr made all important decisions on behalf of Coachcode and draw the inescapable conclusion that Mr Schepis Jnr was simply a rubberstamp and did whatever his father wanted him to do," Mr O'Connor said.

"I am further of the view that there is no evidence to support a conclusion that Mr Schepis Snr was in fact working under any contract of service for Coachcode or an employee of Coachcode for the purposes of PAYG taxation."

The appeal was dismissed and Ms Schepis was ordered to pay costs.

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