An employee may bring a personal grievance for disadvantage if, “the employee’s employment, or one or more conditions thereof, is or are affected to the employee’s disadvantage by some unjustifiable action by the employer”. (Section 103 (1)(b) of the Employment Relations Act 2000).

Employee Valid Trial Period Wins Disadvantage Claim 2

Ms Balmaceda was employed by Amphibian Swimming Academy Limited (the respondent) as a swimming instructor on 10 June 2013 until she was dismissed on 15 August 2013 pursuant to a 90 day trial provision in her employment agreement. Ms Balmaceda filed a personal grievance alleging unjustified action by the respondent which caused her disadvantage. The unjustified action was the refusal to pay her wages.

Unpaid Pre Employment Test Signing Employment Agreement Part Trial Period

A recent determination from the Employment Relations Authority has found a voluntary, unpaid pre-employment test did not form part of a trial period.  The employees personal grievances for unjustified dismissal and disadvantage failed.

Benefits Mediation

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.

Employment Standards Provisions Force

New employment standards legislation was introduced last year to give greater protection to employees on “zero-hour” contracts, with no guarenteed hours of work.  However, the changes have wider-reaching implications and in one way or another have an impact on almost all employment agreements, particularly regarding:

Case Final Warning 10 Months Incident Disadvantaged Employee

When a disciplinary investigation takes a long time to complete, the employer should take into consideration the length of time that has passed when deciding on an appropriate outcome.

Vmr V Civil Aviation Authority 2021

Last month, a case came out of the Employment Court denying interim reinstatement for unvaccinated workers at Christchurch Airport.

Pitfalls 90 Day Trial Period Employers Beware

The 90-day trial period has been extended to all employers regardless of the number of employees.  All employers can now hire new employees on a trial period of 90 days or less without the risk of the employee taking a personal grievance for unjustified dismissal (they may still take a personal grievance on other grounds) in the event that the employee is dismissed during the trial period.  This all sounds wonderful in theory, but what is being discovered through the Courts is that it’s not as easy as it sounds.

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