Health & Safety

Our guidance ensures you stay on the right side of Health & Safety legislation

Health and Safety is a core consideration for any business or organisation. The Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 places responsibility on all participants in business, at every level of an organisation, from Directors, to contractors, subcontractors, and workers. 

We regularly provide health and safety compliance advice, helping companies and boards of directors understand their obligations and implement meaningful policies and programmes.

We can advise on specific health and safety issues and provide training and support for our clients.

Hesketh Henry’s experience covers New Zealand’s most high-risk industries: construction, maritime, transport, manufacturing, agriculture, forestry and utilities.

Our lawyers, including former prosecutors, know how the regulatory agencies work. We assist our clients with mandatory notifications and investigations to lower the risk of prosecution or enforcement action. If charges are laid, we appear in Court as defence counsel, negotiate with the prosecution and can apply for enforceable undertakings. We are also on the panel for a number of insurers and help their insureds through these processes. 

Need advice on Health & Safety?
Contact the expert team at Hesketh Henry.

Examples of work completed by our team include:

  • Providing Health and Safety training to the employees, managers, Boards of Directors and Boards of Trustees;
  • Helping  clients manage their responsibilities with regard to personal protective equipment (PPE);
  • Advising employers on their obligation when acquiring a business, including health and safety and due diligence in relation to large industrial plant and operations;
  • Advising companies on the development and implementation of drug and alcohol testing regimes;
  • Assisting with mandatory notifications to regulators;
  • Assisting with investigations by WorkSafe, Maritime New Zealand and other regulators into notifiable incidents;
  • Negotiating enforceable undertakings;
  • Advising employers and business owners on Covid19 response;
  • Negotiating summaries of fact for use in prosecutions; and
  • Defending prosecutions and appearing at sentencing hearings.
Key Contacts

Insights & Opinion / Health & Safety

Trust liability under the Health and Safety at Work Act
WorkSafe New Zealand v RH & JY Trust & ors
21.02.2024 Posted in Health & Safety & Private Wealth
It’s not “all care, no responsibility”
Director prosecuted for health and safety failures arising from fire that caused significant damage to cargo ship.
29.05.2023 Posted in Health & Safety & Trade and Transport
Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail: Leasing and Health and Safety
When the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSWA) came into force in April 2016 as part of the Government’s strategy to reduce serious work-related injuries, it marked an important shift in health ...
22.02.2023 Posted in Health & Safety & Property
Concrete pillars impressive
Leave refused for second appeal in relation to sentence on sinking fatalities
In May, the Court of Appeal refused to grant leave to Ocean Fisheries Limited (Ocean Fisheries) to further appeal the size of an emotional harm reparation sentence.  Factual Background  In October 2...
20.12.2022 Posted in Health & Safety & Trade and Transport
No Case to Answer. Significant Costs Awarded Against WorkSafe
The recent decision of WorkSafe New Zealand v Mount Somers Sand Ltd [2022] NZDC 12056 is significant because WorkSafe was required to pay the defendant’s costs after the Court found there was no cas...
21.10.2022 Posted in Health & Safety
Hands and gavel
Health and Safety at Work Act: Whakaari prosecutions and protection of the public
On 9 December 2019 Whakaari/White Island erupted tragically killing or severely injuring the 47 people who were exploring the offshore volcano.
21.10.2022 Posted in Health & Safety
Health Safety Blocks Wide
Directors’ accountability for health and safety violations
The Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSWA) defines an ‘officer’ as a person who exercises significant influence over the management of a business or undertaking (PCBU).
21.07.2022 Posted in Health & Safety
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