Failed skills training provider Get Qualified Australia and its CEO has been ordered to pay $8 million for ripping off thousands of workers who were promised qualifications.
Get Qualified’s sole director Adam Wadi was ordered to pay an additional penalty of $500,000 by the Federal Court on Wednesday, following legal proceedings bought by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.
The court found his company had engaged in ‘serious, extensive and deliberate’ contraventions of consumer law.
Get Qualified’s sole director Adam Wadi was ordered to pay an additional penalty of $500,000 by the Federal Court on Wednesday
Failed skills training provider Get Qualified Australia and its CEO has been ordered to pay $8 million for ripping off thousands of workers who were promised qualifications
Trades assistant Andrew, who asked for his last name not to be disclosed, said the company used ‘delay tactics’ to avoid providing customers with their qualifications.
Andrew signed up for a Certification 3 Mechanical Fitter course in June last year, costing him $3,200.
‘Payment was made up front. They structured it so that if you paid up front you would receive a discount,’ he told Daily Mail Australia.
It took three months for Andrew to provide all the information necessary to gain his qualification, but he was kept waiting.
‘I gave them all the documents and they basically stalled,’ he said.
‘I was bounced between five different people. Every month they would say the last person had left.’
Months on Andrew had given up on both the money and getting his qualification.
‘I spoke to the liquidators and they said there was no hope,’ he said.
Justice Jonathan Beach found Get Qualified, which went into liquidation in March, used unfair tactics to pressure students into enrolling and failed to provide promised services.
The court found Adam Wadi’s company had engaged in ‘serious, extensive and deliberate’ contraventions of consumer law
The organisation’s 100 per cent money-back guarantees were also based on criteria used to reject students’ refund requests.
‘(The conduct) took place within the context of a non-existent compliance culture, a cavalier attitude towards consumers, and the knowledge and direct involvement of senior management,’ Justice Beach said.
‘The contravening conduct generated significant revenue and caused substantial consumer harm.’
The ACCC earlier said more than 5000 customers who paid between $750 and $8500 to enrol in courses with Get Qualified did not receive a qualification.
Justice Beach said the education sector had been ‘infected by the parasitic practices of operators preying upon the vulnerable and the unwary’.
He also disqualified Wadi from managing a corporation for seven years.
Get Qualified Australia ripped off thousands of workers by promising them qualifications they couldn’t provide