The owners of a liquor store who were found to have racially harassed an employee have lodged an appeal against the judgment, saying they weren't given a chance to defend the claims.

The March findings of the Human Rights Review Tribunal have been set aside pending the appeal.

Worker Satnam Singh was awarded $45,000 in damages for suffering racial abuse, culminating in a physical assault, while working for two months at Scorpion Liquor in Mt Roskill.

Owner Raj Devi and her son Shane Singh, who managed the business, say the claims made by the employee were "wholly wrong".


They also claimed they weren't served notice of the proceedings and weren't aware of the hearing date.

Ms Devi and her son had taken no part in the hearing, or in a previous case heard by the Employment Relations Authority.

The tribunal said where there was a mistaken belief that a defendant had been served with proceedings and the hearing goes ahead in their absence, a miscarriage of justice could occur.

A consent order was made setting aside the decision of March 9.

The appeal hearing will be heard by the High Court.

The March decision noted that notice of the proceedings had been delivered and signed for by the defendants, but no response had ever been received.

Scorpion Liquor is now under new ownership.