There have been numerous articles concerning the legality of pay cuts by employers during and since lockdown, many of which provide misleading commentary.
One such article advised that “employment law had not been suspended and that any employer wanting to reduce an employee’s pay would need to obtain their consent”. That is not the full story. Another was dismissive of the “no work, no pay” principle and supported the Employment Relations Authority’s finding in one case that the employees were “ready, willing and able” to work during lockdown and therefore should have received their full pay for the period in question.Read More
Whether or not investigation interviews should be recorded can be a vexed question. Following are some of the pros and cons you may wish to consider:Read More
The Government has today, announced changes in criteria to qualify for the COVID-19 Wage Subsidy Extension.
The criteria previously required employers to demonstrate a 50% decline in revenue for the last 30 days prior to applying (in comparison to the same period in 2019).
This has changed to a 40% decline in revenue for a 30 day period in the 40 days before applying (starting no earlier than 10 May 2020), compared to a similar period last year.Read More
The Employment Court has just released its decision in the matter of Leota v Parcel Express Couriers Limited, finding that Mr Leota is an employee and therefore entitled to bring a personal grievance against Parcel Express. While this decision is limited to the facts of the case, it is easy to see it forming the basis of a wider application for courier drivers, and other workers purported to be contractors.Read More
Many people seem unclear about whether employees can be required to use their annual holidays; and whether the wage subsidy can be allocated to payment of holiday pay.
The answers are:
Preparing for Level 3 will be no easy task. It certainly will not be business as usual. You have a few days to plan how you will do this.
All businesses operating under Level 3 must have a COVID-19 safety plan that sets out how they will operate safely. Worksafe is all over this; and has developed a plan applicable to all businesses. Most industry groups have also been working on plans for their particular sector, which you should review. The key issues to consider in your plan are:
Slipping under the radar at the end of last week was the Epidemic Preparedness (Employment Relations Act 2000 - Collective Bargaining) Immediate Modification Order 2020. Its purpose is to ensure that no party to collective bargaining is disadvantaged by the COVID-19 lockdown.Read More
On 20 April, the Government intends announcing its plans for lifting Level 4. While nobody expects that to occur before 22 April, there is growing pressure from many quarters to move to Level 2 as soon as possible so the economy can start to flow.Read More
Your obligations under the wage subsidy scheme depend on whether you applied before or after 4pm on 27 March (ie date of application, not date of receipt of payment).
The scheme focuses on three groups of workers in essential businesses:
*At risk groups are:
This month we have three public holidays: