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A Word of Warning

Written by Jim Roberts & Jodi Sharman on September 7th, 2016.

What is a warning in the employment law context and how do you issue an employee with a warning that will stick? It is not as straightforward as you may think.
Topics: Employment Law

Consultants – Are you ready?

Written by Nick Gillies, Christina Bryant, Helen MacFarlane and Sarah Holderness on August 23rd, 2016.

How will the changes to the Construction Contracts Act 2002 affect Architects, Engineers and Quantity Surveyors?

Who ya gonna call?

Written by Alison Maelzer and Jim Roberts on August 3rd, 2016.

Obviously, we all hope that we never have to deal with an incident in the workplace.  But equally, we know that accidents do happen.  With the new Health and Safety at Work Act 2015, the rules around notifications have changed.  So what do you have to notify?  When?  How?
Topics: Employment Law

Gotta catch ‘em all? What does Pokémon Go mean for the employment relationship?

Written by Alison Maelzer & Mo Al Obaidi on July 25th, 2016.

So unless you've been living in a cave for the last few weeks (and hey, we're not judging your choice of school holiday entertainment), you've probably become aware of Pokémon Go.  Indeed, statistically, there's a good chance you're a Pokémon Go player yourself.  For those not in the know, Pokémon Go is a web-based app that allows players to catch, train (and battle with) collectable digital creatures, which are animated on your smartphone, and can be superimposed on your actual surroundings as you catch them.  The game has, over just a few weeks, become immensely popular and is hugely addictive.  In fact, it’s so popular that we're starting to see reports of players injuring themselves by being so distracted that they wander into traffic, or in one report, off a cliff.  When a rare Pokémon appeared in New York's Central Park recently, traffic chaos ensued as players simply abandoned their cars where they were, in the middle of the crowded streets, and the drivers raced off to catch the virtual creatures. Justin Bieber’s presence, reportedly, nearly went unnoticed.

First judgment on whether a director “lives in” New Zealand

Written by Chris Lee, Erich Bachmann, Kate Telford and Bill Walsh on July 25th, 2016.


Since 1 April 2015, New Zealand companies have been required to have at least one director who:
  • lives in New Zealand; or
  • lives in Australia and is also the director of an Australian company (excluding a branch),
(for the remainder of this article, we’ll call this the “Residency Requirement”).

Discrimination in the workplace – here we go again!

Written by Alison Maelzer & Jim Roberts on July 19th, 2016.

The recent article in the New Zealand Herald about a job applicant who was apparently denied the chance of a job interview due to her wearing a hijab provoked a feeling of déjà vu.  It is disappointing that yet again, this issue has arisen.  Surely, surely, employers know by now that discrimination on the basis of religious beliefs or ethnic or national origins is, in almost all circumstances, unlawful, and simply unacceptable?
Topics: Employment Law

"Hallelujah, I'm free!" Exiting a multi-owner SME - the importance of a Shareholders' Agreement

Written by Chris Lee and Bill Walsh on July 19th, 2016.

As Diane Foreman recently commented, a business can provide two sources of incomes – the 1st while you’re working in it and the 2nd when you sell up...............written by Chris Lee and Bill Walsh

Do you know your CCC's? Duty to Consult, Co-operate and Co-ordinate with other PCBUs

Written by Jim Roberts and Mo Al Obaidi on June 10th, 2016.

A Person Conducting a Business or Undertaking (PCBU) is essentially any entity doing business of any sort in New Zealand.  PCBU's are required to ensure, so far as reasonably practicable, the health and safety of workers employed, engaged, influenced, or directed by the PCBU, and the safety of any other person who may be put at risk by work done by the PCBUs.  Part of that is to get workers involved in the process of risk identification and control (workers include: employees, volunteers and contractors).

Payroll 3 - Compliance

Written by Jim Roberts on April 20th, 2016.

Is compliance that difficult?  For the most part, ‘No’.  Yes there are complexities around the application of the Holidays Act 2003, particularly public holidays.  It does seem a bit daft to have four or five different methods for the calculation of pay under the Act, two or three if you count the formulae for annual holidays, and two for public holidays, sick leave and bereavement leave.
Topics: Employment Law

Deductions for Unworked Notice

Written by Alison Maelzer on April 6th, 2016.

It can be really frustrating for an employer when an employee just ups and leaves without giving the contractual notice period.  Many employment agreements contain a provision to the effect that if an employee fails to give the correct period of notice, the employer can deduct a sum equivalent to the salary for the unworked period from the employee’s final pay.
Topics: Employment Law

Payroll 2 - The Labour Inspectors are Coming

Written by Jim Roberts on April 5th, 2016.

Why are they coming?  Is there some new law?
If we look hard enough the answer is probably ‘yes’, there is some newish law.  A small amendment among a number of other ‘tweaks’ to the Employment Relations Act 2000 came into force 1 April 2011.  It set out the "Functions of Labour Inspector".
Topics: Employment Law

Update - Rent Reviews........What Can Tenants Do?

Written by Joanne Chilvers on March 29th, 2016.

Market rent reviews are often a source of disagreement between landlords and tenants as to the level of the reviewed rent.............


Payroll 1 - Your Next Nightmare

Written by Jim Roberts on March 21st, 2016.

This is the first of three newsletters focused on payroll compliance.
Topics: Employment Law

Employment Law Changes – what you need to know about the latest round of amendments

Written by Jim Roberts & Alison Maelzer on March 14th, 2016.

Last night, Parliament passed amendments to a number of key pieces of employment legislation.  These will come into force on 1 April 2016.  In summary, these amendments aim to implement a single broad policy that (according to the Government) aims to promote “fairness and improve productivity in workplaces by enhancing protections and benefits for both employers and employees” and prohibit practices that lack sufficient mutuality.
Topics: Employment Law

Investment Properties Vulnerable to Relationship Property Claims

Written by Mary Joy SImpson and Claire Perry on February 18th, 2016.

Unlike the family home, investment properties are not inherently relationship property under the Property (Relationships) Act 1976 ("Act"). Written by Mary Joy Simpson and Claire Perry.

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