News

The Changing Landscape of Contracting .......... Expand article
Contract article

The process of establishing better rights for contractors has started.  A Tripartite Working Group comprising MBIE, CTU and Business NZ has recommended a set of policy changes to improve how regulator...

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Living Wage Increased Expand article
Contract article

Announced without much fanfare on 1 April, the Living Wage effective from 1 September 2022 will be $23.65.

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Time to get back to normal……… Expand article
Contract article

It’s becoming very clear that unless we snap out of negative thoughts about COVID and get back to some normality, the economy is going to remain sluggish in many sectors for longer, negative attitudes about returning to the workplace are likely to become more entrenched; and more people may suffer mental health impacts.

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Easter and Anzac Day Expand article
Contract article

The following are public holidays, but Easter Sunday is not.

  • April 15  - Good Friday
  • April 18  - Easter Monday
  • April 25 – ANZAC Day

Entitlements are straight forward this year because Anzac Day doesn't fall on a Saturday or Sunday.

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Trend to Enhanced Parental Leave Options Expand article
Contract article

Parental leave is a major feature of workplaces and can provide employers with a competitive edge in the labour market when it comes to attracting and retaining talent. 

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Restraints of Trade are Enforceable Expand article
Contract article

The recent case of Tova O’Brien and Discovery NZ Limited reinforces that appropriately crafted restraints in employment agreements can be successfully enforced.

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Rapid Antigen Testing (RAT) Flow Charts Expand article
Contract article

The Ministry of Health has produced two useful flow charts showing how to use RATs in the workplace.

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Preparing for Omicron – Obligation to Pay Employees Expand article
Contract article

With the onset of Omicron imminent, there is a lot of mis-information about employer obligations to pay employees who either have COVID-19 or who are a close contact of a person with COVID-19. There is evidence of some employees attempting to rort the system by seeking paid special leave from their employer on the basis they have been in contact with a person who is a close contact of a person with COVID-19.

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The Changing Nature of Work Expand article
Contract article

A recent Employment Court judgment continues a developing trend of changes as to what constitutes work; and the time during which employees are entitled to be paid (2021-NZEmpC-217-Humphreys v Humphreys and Ministry of Health).

Mr Humphreys looks after his severely disabled daughter and has done so for many years.  Mr Humphreys sought to clarify his employment status – whether he can be employed by his severely disabled daughter (as contended by the Ministry of Health) or whether the Ministry is his employer; and if so, what obligations flow from any such employment relationship.

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2021/22 Christmas/New Year Holidays – The Basics Expand article
Contract article

What are the Public Holidays?

The answer to that question will vary, depending on the individual employee’s work pattern.

This year Christmas Day and New Years’ Day fall on a Saturday and Boxing Day and 2 January fall on a Sunday, so those Public Holidays will transfer for most, but not all, employees.

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Traffic Light Orders Released Expand article
Contract article

Today 3 December, the COVID-19 Protection Framework comes into effect. The COVID-19 Public Health Response (Protection Framework) Order 2021 establishes the Framework and replaces the Alert Level system.

Most of the existing rules about use of face coverings, social distancing, use of tracer App and so on continue to apply. 

In terms of crossing a border, from 15 December travellers must produce their Vaccine Pass or provide proof of a negative COVID test taken no more than 72 hours prior to travel.

There are new requirements that relate to the use of CVCs .

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Clarity re Unvaccinated Employees Expand article
Contract article

The COVID-19 Response (Vaccinations) Legislation Act 2021 has been passed.  Royal Assent occurred today and so the Act is effective from 26 November. This is a powerful piece of legislation, passed under urgency, which provides absolute clarity around employers’ rights and obligations in respect of unvaccinated employees.

In recent weeks there has been a seismic shift in peoples’ expectations around COVID-19 in general; and vaccination status in particular.  Only a minority of employers are not going down the vaccine mandate path, which is a big turnaround from only a month ago.

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