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Seven is ordered to pay a former My Kitchen Rules contestant over $22,000-a-year in compensation

Seven is ordered to pay a former My Kitchen Rules contestant over $22,000-a-year in compensation

Channel Seven has been ordered to pay a former My Kitchen Rules contestant compensation following her appearance on the show back in 2019.

According to a report by news.com.au on Tuesday, the network has been forced to pay Piper O’Neill over $22,000 a year in ongoing payments after she claimed she suffered ‘psychological injury’ on the show.

Piper, 37, appeared on the cooking series alongside her best friend, Veronica Cristovao, with the two women labelled the show’s resident ‘beauty queens’.

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Legal battle: Channel Seven has been ordered to pay a former My Kitchen Rules contestant ongoing compensation following her appearance on the show back in 2019. Pictured, Veronica Cristovao (left) and Piper O’Neill (right)

She first lodged a workers compensation claim against Seven in August last year, asking for a payment of almost $1,000 in weekly benefits.

Piper had initially asked that the payments be dated from December 24, 2018. 

During her stint on the show, it was revealed that Piper was involved in a ‘secret’ relationship with fellow contestant Victor Aeberli.

Compensation: According to a report by news.com.au on Tuesday, the network has been forced to pay Piper over $22,000 a year after she claimed she suffered 'psychological injury' on the show. Pictured with former judge Pete Evans

Compensation: According to a report by news.com.au on Tuesday, the network has been forced to pay Piper over $22,000 a year after she claimed she suffered ‘psychological injury’ on the show. Pictured with former judge Pete Evans

Their seemingly clandestine affair quickly became a major plotline for the show, with Piper separated from her husband, Jordan Green, at the time of filming.

In a dramatic scene on MKR back in April 2019, Veronica outed her teammate for sleeping with their co-star and rival Victor, even though it was later alleged that everybody already knew.   

An upset Victor stormed out of Josh and Austin Bonwick’s dinner party, and Piper soon rushed out behind him during what was the beginning of the show’s supposed ‘sex scandal’.

Affair: During her stint on the show, it was revealed that Piper was involved in a 'secret' relationship with fellow contestant Victor Aeberli (pictured)

Affair: During her stint on the show, it was revealed that Piper was involved in a ‘secret’ relationship with fellow contestant Victor Aeberli (pictured)

Veronica left the remaining guests shocked when she confirmed Piper and Victor’s fling by saying: ‘When she f**king leaves at nighttime and goes into his bed, I don’t know what the f**k is said.’  

Speaking to news.com.au at the time, Veronica said her friend had been treated unfairly by the show’s ‘sex scandal’ edit.

‘Everyone knew what was going on between Victor and Piper,’ she said, arguing that the show’s other contestants all knew about the relationship.

Television fodder: Their seemingly clandestine affair quickly became a major plotline for the show, with Piper separated from her husband, Jordan Green, at the time of filming

Television fodder: Their seemingly clandestine affair quickly became a major plotline for the show, with Piper separated from her husband, Jordan Green, at the time of filming

Cooking contestants: Piper, 37, appeared on the cooking series alongside her best friend, Veronica, with the two women labelled the show's resident 'beauty queens'

Cooking contestants: Piper, 37, appeared on the cooking series alongside her best friend, Veronica, with the two women labelled the show’s resident ‘beauty queens’

‘It’s very unfair for Piper. At the end of the day she was bullied at that table. It’s just very unfair because it’s all public. She’s got a family and two kids and this is really unfair.’

Piper later claimed workers compensation and alleged she had suffered psychological injury ‘due to vilification and bullying from producers and the network’. 

She also alleged that it included ‘over 40-hour work weeks, control over her phone, distortions of her actions and words after editing, victimisation, bullying and harassment and unfair treatment and adverse interactions with other workers, producers and staff’. 

Taking action: She first lodged a workers compensation claim against Seven in August last year, asking for a payment of almost $1,000 in weekly benefits

Taking action: She first lodged a workers compensation claim against Seven in August last year, asking for a payment of almost $1,000 in weekly benefits

Seven disputed many of her claims, including whether she was considered an employee at the network, had sustained injury and become incapacitated, and whether her employment could be considered a substantial contributing factor.

They also argued that her complaint hadn’t been filed within the acceptable timeframe, and questioned whether she had ‘misperceived events’, according to a published decision from the Personal Injury Commission of NSW.   

The case was first heard via telephone conference in December 2020, during which Piper agreed to an independent medical examination as organised by Seven. 

Moving forward: The case was first heard via telephone conference in December 2020, during which Piper agreed to an independent medical examination as organised by Seven. Pictured with former judge Manu Feildel

Moving forward: The case was first heard via telephone conference in December 2020, during which Piper agreed to an independent medical examination as organised by Seven. Pictured with former judge Manu Feildel

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A second telephone conference took place in February, with both Piper and Seven advising the commission that ‘the matter was settled’.

The rate of compensation and the date of commencement was decided at a later date.

Injured workers who are rendered unable to work are entitled to 95 per cent of their base rate of pay. 

Making claims: Piper later claimed workers compensation and alleged she had suffered psychological injury 'due to vilification and bullying from producers and the network'

Making claims: Piper later claimed workers compensation and alleged she had suffered psychological injury ‘due to vilification and bullying from producers and the network’

This eligibility is for the first 13 weeks of the entitlement period, with compensation continuing at a lower rate after that.  

Contestants on the now defunct cooking show were given an additional allowance of $500 per week for their own personal meals.

Although Piper tried to claim the allowance as part of her compensation, the commission ruled that this was not part of her earnings. 

Fighting back: Seven disputed many of her claims, including whether she was considered an employee at the network, had sustained injury and become incapacitated, and whether her employment could be considered a substantial contributing factor

Fighting back: Seven disputed many of her claims, including whether she was considered an employee at the network, had sustained injury and become incapacitated, and whether her employment could be considered a substantial contributing factor

Seven was ordered to pay Piper weekly compensation of $475 for the 13 weeks between December 24, 2018 and March 25, 2019, totalling $6175.

Her compensation would then continue at $425 per week from March 26, 2019 onwards, amounting to $22,100 per year. 

It was revealed in May last year that My Kitchen Rules would be cancelled after 11 years on the air.  

Show's over? It was revealed in May last year that My Kitchen Rules would be cancelled after 11 years on the air

Show’s over? It was revealed in May last year that My Kitchen Rules would be cancelled after 11 years on the air 


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