An employer who employs seasonal workers must provide those workers with a fixed term agreement that complies in every respect with the Employment Relations Act 2000, section 66. An employer who has engaged a seasonal employee but has failed to provide for a fixed term and then dismisses the employee at the end of the season without going through a fair and reasonable process will be found liable for unjustifiably dismissing the employee.

Variation Terms Custom Practice Implied Terms Employment 2

As a general rule, contractual terms cannot be varied without the consent of both of the contracting parties. However, an employer has a right to manage his or her business. The line between the employer’s right to manage, which does not require the consent of an employee, and a variation of contract, which does require the consent of an employee, can be hard to draw. An absence of protest amounts to acceptance of an alteration, and acceptance of a change may vary a contract even if the acceptance was unwillingly given.

Suspension Sick Leave

Question: If an employer requests that an employee stay at home, or go home, because he or she is unwell or unfit for work, is this time off deemed to be sick leave and therefore able to be deducted from the employee’s entitlement or is the employee to be treated as having been suspended from work?

Case Misconduct Work Justifies Dismissal

Misconduct outside work may provide justification for the dismissal of an employee if the misconduct has the potential to damage the employer’s business in some way. The conduct may be incompatible with the employee’s duties at work or it may undermine the trust and confidence that is necessary between employer and employee (Smith v The Christchurch Press Company Limited (2001) 6 NZELC 96,162; [2000] 1 ERNZ 624 (CA)).

Rule Redundancies Employers Decision Scrutinised

An important decision has recently been made by the Employment Court in terms of redundancy law.  Last month the Employment Court ruled that it can scrutinise an employer’s decision to make an employee redundant to ascertain whether there were sufficient business reasons for the redundancy.

Mondayisation Waitangi Anzac Day

The Bill providing for public holidays on Mondays when Waitangi Day or ANZAC Day falls on a Saturday or Sunday —the Holidays (Full Recognition of Waitangi Day and ANZAC Day) Amendment Bill the was passed on 17 April 2013. (It awaits assent.)

Anzac Day Trading Restrictions

Just a reminder that ANZAC Day is tomorrow and there are trading restrictions until 1pm. 

Kiwisaver Employer Contributions

With the recent increase in the minimum rate of KiwiSaver contributions rising to 3% for both employees and employers, it is timely to examine the implications of KiwiSaver from both a financial and legal perspective.

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