Interns or work experience volunteers can easily become employees entitled to payment

In Fair Work Ombudsman v Crocmedia Pty Ltd (2015) FCCA 140 delivered on 29 January 2015, the Federal Circuit Court imposed a civil penalty of $24,000 on a media company for failing to pay minimum wages to two of its interns, who it regarded as volunteers or work experience visitors. The interns were initially engaged for three weeks’ work experience, but the arrangement continued for 12 months for one, and six months for the other, with the interns working as producers of radio programs. The only payments made to the interns were for reimbursement of expenses.