Karlovac Cafe Didn’t Pay Waitress for 15 Days, Hit With 68,000 Kuna Fine

Lauren Simmonds

One often hears stories from Croatia about employers not paying their staff properly, on time, and sometimes not at all. More often than not, this leaves a bitter taste in the mouths of readers and the common assumption that nothing is ever done about the situation and that these rogue employers never face justice. This time, a waitress who had been hard done by her employer in a Karlovac cafe, made sure punishment happened.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 9th of March, 2020, the waitress asked her employer in a Karlovac cafe for payment several times, but he never actually paid her. He did enter her onto the company’s payroll, but only after she reported him to the competent authorities and their menacing inspectors.

The owner of the aforementioned Karlovac cafe did not pay his waitress for fifteen days, more specifically from the 16th of August to the 31st of August 2017, a mere 1,600 kuna gross sum.

The Misdemeanor Court in Karlovac therefore fined him a massive 68,000 kuna, of which 61,000 kuna needed to be paid from his company and 7,000 kuna out of his pocket personally as the person responsible for the ridiculous situation.

He was found guilty and he had not handed over his employee’s salary within the legal deadline, which was no later than September the 30th, 2017, according to KA portal.

The defendant didn’t appear in court and the waitress was questioned. She said everything was fine until the last day in August, when the boss came over for a drink with some of his friends and ordered a round for everyone. He told the waitress to charge it to him, which is what she did.

After that, she says, he did the same for the next round of drinks. But when it came to billing, he said that the second round was being paid by his friends and not him, and accused her of wanting to defraud him for that amount.

It hurt her a lot, she left him the keys to the Karlovac cafe, took her belongings and left. However, she didn’t pick up her salary she had earned for half that month, or half of the agreed 3,200 kuna gross. She asked him for payment several times, but as mentioned, he never paid her and only put her details into the company’s payroll upon having been reported to the inspectors.

The huge fine, which is much larger than what the owner of the Karlovac cafe should have simply paid his former waitress should act as a stark warning to all other Croatian employers wanting to get out of paying their deserving staff properly and fairly.

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