Payroll service for contractors goes AWOL leaving some unpaid

Plutus Payroll 'is suspending our business activities due to a commercial dispute'


Tech contractors say the've not been paid after an outfit called “Plutus Payroll” removed all substantive content from its web site and replace it with news it “is suspending our business activities due to a commercial dispute.”

An email sent to users of the service adds “We are deeply sorry for the inconvenience this will cause our valued contractors.”

“Some of you may be affected by payments scheduled on 27 or 28 April, or today 01 May or tomorrow, 02 May,” the email continues. “Please be assured that we are working diligently to resolve the dispute and will keep you informed of our progress. Our aim is to recover sums that may be owed to you.”

“We would encourage all of our contractors to contact their recruiters or employers to make alternate arrangements for their pay. Our recruitment partners have been informed and are standing by to assist you as well.”

Plutus Payroll suggests those affected by the suspension call a number that, at the time The Register called, went through to a voicemail box that was full and refused the chance to add another message. We've also sent the company a written message using its email form, but at the time of writing have not received a response.

An archive.org version of the company's web page suggests it offered employers a simple way to pay multiple contractors and meet their compliance chores. An old YouTube video describes the company as “... a Payroll Services company with a difference. Our goal is to reward Australian companies for their fiscal responsibility by introducing a rebate system for those who pay their commitments on time. Whether you are a business employing staff, or a contractor who is looking for someone to alleviate your admin and tax hassles, Plutus offers a rewards system to help you minimise the cost of your Payroll.”

But as this Whirlpool thread shows, numerous contractors say they're owed money by the company.

A former Plutus worker, “Tim Munk”, also weighs in to the thread with a report of recent layoffs at the company.

Other comments suggest that Plutus was known to be wobbling and employers therefore suggested their contractors make alternative arrangements. There's a also a suggestion that a dispute with a bank is to blame.

If you're owed money by Plutus, do let me know. ®

UPDATE: A dozen contractors owed money by Plutus have quickly contacted The Reg. Most have the same story - they've received a pay slip but no money in their bank account. More news as it comes to hand ...

We've also got a second story here in which Plutus denies being insolvent but advises it can't say when it might be able to start paying people again.

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