Our Blog

Feb 14, 2018 - Easter Sunday trading and notice requirements

Territorial authorities (city and district councils) may now establish local policies that allow “shops” within their area, or parts of it, to trade on Easter Sunday. Easter Sunday falls on 1 April this year, and given the strict notice that needs to be provided in order to request a shop employee to work on Easter […]

Feb 13, 2018 - Troubles with triangular employment relationships

Another Bill has been recently introduced to Parliament intending to amend the Employment Relations Act.  The latest Amendment Bill focuses on triangular employment relationships, and seeks to ensure that employees employed by one employer, but working under the control and direction of another business or organisation, are not deprived of the right to coverage of […]

Jan 30, 2018 - New Bill legislating for fairer workplaces proposed

The Government introduced a new Bill on 25 January 2018 which intends to amend the Employment Relations Act 2000 with the aim of providing greater protection for employees and workers. The Government believes there is a need to restore fairness and balance into New Zealand workplaces. The changes are as expected and include restrictions imposed […]

Nov 13, 2017 - Government moves to extend Paid Parental Leave to 26 weeks with urgency

On 8th November, Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway introduced a Bill to Parliament extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks by 2020, saying it is a vitally important move to support working families with newborns and young children. “Our Government’s commitment to families is underscored by this legislation, which is the first […]

Oct 26, 2017 - What might the employment landscape become under our new Government?

After nine years under a National Government, the employment landscape is about to be reshaped.  While Labour, New Zealand First and the Greens all had different policies and priorities coming into the 2017 election, they shared the commonality of being policies for the people. One of the places where we are likely to see some […]

Oct 17, 2017 - The first ‘availability’ case – Fraser v Mc Donald’s Restaurants (New Zealand) Limited

This is the first case in which section 67D of the Employment Relations Act (regarding availability provisions) has been considered by the Employment Court. The case concerned two Mc Donald’s employees who sought a declaration that their individual employment agreements contained an availability clause in terms of the new provisions in the Act, and that […]

Oct 16, 2017 - Personal grievances costly to defend

The EMA has released its annual analysis of personal grievance cases heard at the Employment Relations Authority, and again it was a sorry story for employers with employees’ winning 72% of cases. The average national award for hurt and humiliation has increased to just over $7,000 compared to $6,334 in the previous year.  Hurt and […]

Oct 16, 2017 - What’s mediation all about?

When an employment dispute or personal grievance arises it can be very stressful for everyone involved. With work being a big part of most people’s lives, it’s understandable that when there’s an employment relationship problem in the workplace, it is important that they are dealt with efficiently, respectfully, and in a way that creates the […]

Sep 18, 2017 - Employees to have paid time off work to vote

Section 162 of the Electoral Act 1993 provides that employers are required to allow all their employees who are electors and who have not had a reasonable opportunity to vote on Election Day before starting work, to leave their work for the purpose of voting, no later than 3pm for the remainder of the day. An […]

Jul 24, 2017 - $57,000 fine for breach of minimum employment standards

This case highlights the heavy consequences and financial implications of knowingly breaching minimum employment standards. BBS is a horticultural company which contracts services to horticultural growers, particularly asparagus producers in the Waikato.  Upon a Labour Inspector visit in 2013, it was discovered the employees were not provided with individual employment agreements, there were no time […]

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