Update your 90 Day Trial Period clause

As a result of on-going case law development in this controversial area of the law, we have further refined our standard trial period clause.   Please contact one of our Associates to have your trial period clause updated ASAP to ensure you avoid any unnecessary risk.  Alternatively, note the changes we have made below and update your…

Understanding and applying the “30 day rule”

With the recent amendments to the Employment Relations Act 2000 removing the “30-day rule” from 6 March 2015, there may be some confusion as to what employment agreement employers should be offering new employees. We have developed some Q&A’s that will hopefully help determine whether a new employee should be covered by an individual employment agreement…

Employment agreement should be signed

In the past it has been thought that getting a new employee to sign and return a covering letter would be sufficient acknowledgment and acceptance of an employment offer and the terms and conditions set out in an attached draft employment agreement. The Employment Relations Authority suggested recently that signing a covering letter might not…

Employment Agreements for New Hires

With the recent amendments to the Employment Relations Act 2000 removing the “30-day rule” from 6 March 2015, there may be some confusion as to what employment agreement employers should be offering new employees. The answers to the questions below should help determine whether a new employee should be covered by an individual agreement or…

Employee or Contractor?

Whether a person is acting as an employee or an independent contractor depends upon the provisions of the agreement, and the real nature of the relationship between the parties.  The Courts will look at the following tests in determining whether a worker is an employee or contractor: Control – how much control the employer has…

Employee or Contractor?

Whether a person is acting as an employee or an independent contractor depends upon the provisions of the agreement, and the real nature of the relationship between the parties. Contractors do not have the same rights as employees, and should therefore seek advice from a lawyer, accountant or other advocate, before entering into this sort…

Recent case: Employee ordered to pay training cost

An employer successfully sought recovery of training costs incurred by it in respect of a Diploma in Advanced Automation undertaken by an employee, who denied liability for the training costs. Early in 2011, the employee put a proposal to the employer that it fund the Diploma at a cost of $8,144.15. The employer agreed to the…

Appropriate employment agreements crucial

There are a variety of different types of employment agreements that can apply to employment relationships, including: Permanent full time Fixed term (temporary) Part time – permanent or variable hours Casual Contractor agreements (contract for services) are NOT employment agreements, and should be an entirely different document altogether. Employment agreement create the foundation of the…

Appropriate employment agreements crucial

There are a variety of different types of employment agreements that can apply to employment relationships, including: Permanent full time Fixed term (temporary) Part time – permanent or variable hours Casual Contractor agreements (contract for services) are NOT employment agreements, and should be an entirely different document altogether. Employment agreement create the foundation of the…

Top tip for 2014 – Follow your employment agreements!

Well it’s only the first week back from the Christmas break, and while many people are still on leave, we’re already getting busy with a variety of employment relations issues… Not a great way to start the year, but here’s our top tip to get you through a trouble-free 2014: Read and abide by the…

Recent case: Employee fined $50,000 for breaching restraint of trade

A penalty of $50,000 payable to the employer has been imposed on an employee who breached his employment agreement with the employer at least 263 times. The Employment Relations Authority held that the employee was bound by a reasonable restraint of trade and by confidentiality provisions and had breached them by: copying, removing and using…

Recent case: Time in lieu agreements should be written

Any agreement regarding time in lieu to be taken for working over agreed hours should be written into the employment agreement. The agreement should also make it clear whether the time owed will (or will not) be paid out on the termination of employment. If that is not done an employer may face an unexpected…

Recent case: Employment of family members problematic

Employing family members can lead to problems as the case noted below shows. Family members should always be given written employment agreements and be paid at least the minimum wage. In Meroiti v Lindale Lodge Ltd [2013] NZERA Wellington 104, Graeme was employed by his brother John as manager of the Lindale Motor Lodge. The…

Making variations to employment agreements

The world doesn’t stand still, it’s constantly moving and so it the environment in which businesses operate.  Hence, it is very common that the circumstances under which you employed someone may change, and you therefore need to make amendments (or variations) to an employment agreement. The problem is, you cannot simply issue new employment agreements…

Making variations to employment agreements

The world doesn’t stand still, it’s constantly moving and so it the environment in which businesses operate.  Hence, it is very common that the circumstances under which you employed someone may change, and you therefore need to make amendments (or variations) to an employment agreement. The problem is, you cannot simply issue new employment agreements…

Unsigned employment agreement binding

Recent case provides reminder that agreement can be inferred from conduct The Employment Relations Act 2000 provides that an intended agreement must not be treated as an employment agreement if the employee has not signed it or “agreed to any of the terms and conditions specified in the intended agreement” (section 64(6)(b)). An employee who…

Working from home

Yahoo’s new chief executive might have banned it, and Google might think that working from home or teleworking does not provide the best environment for new ideas to grow and thrive. Yet many organisations allow employees to work from their homes – and for a variety of reasons. An organisation may allow employees to work…

Working from home

An organisation may allow employees to work from home (or some other remote location) in a number of different circumstances. It may be part of an organisation’s encouragement of work-life balance; or it may be in response to an employee’s request for flexible working arrangements; or it may be temporary because the workplace is inaccessible…

What to do if you’ve been dismissed

It’s an awful situation to find yourself in, but it actually happens more often than you may think.  Being sacked, fired, or instantly (summarily) dismissed without notice can be a huge shock to your system, and your finances!  Feeling bewildered and not knowing where to turn or what to do is common.  So, to give…

HELP I’ve been sacked! Here’s what to do if you get fired

It’s an awful situation to find yourself in, but it actually happens more often than you may think.  Being sacked, fired, or instantly (summarily) dismissed without notice can be a huge shock to your system, and your finances!  Feeling bewildered and not knowing where to turn or what to do is common.  So, to give…

RESTRUCTURING, CONSULTATION AND GOOD FAITH

Employment Protection Provision In accordance with Section 69OI(1) of the Employment Relations Act 2000 (the “Act”), an employee protection provision means a provision— (a) the purpose of which is to provide protection for the employment of employees affected by a restructuring;     and (b) that includes— (i) a process that the employer must follow in negotiating with…

Part Time and Casual Employees

There is no legal definition of part-time and casual employees. Generally speaking, part-time workers are employed on a permanent basis for less than the ordinary number of hours per week. Part-timers may, for example, work for a few hours a day or for a few days a week on an ongoing basis. Part-time workers have…

Holiday pay for casual employees

There is no statutory definition of casual employee.  Case law establishes that a casual employee is an employee who is hired for short periods of time usually to do specific work.  Such a worker has no regular work pattern or any expectation of ongoing employment.  The employment of true casual workers terminates at the end…

Holiday pay for casual employees

There is no statutory definition of casual employee.  Case law establishes that a casual employee is an employee who is hired for short periods of time usually to do specific work.  Such a worker has no regular work pattern or any expectation of ongoing employment.  The employment of true casual workers terminates at the end…

Employee versus contractor

Whether a person is acting as an employee or an independent contractor depends on the contract and the way the relationship is run.  The provisions of the contract entered into by the parties and the real nature of the relationship are central to the issue of determining the appropriate status of the worker. If you…

Employee versus contractor

In deciding whether a person is an employee or an independent contractor the courts will look to determine the “real nature” of the relationship.  They will look to see if the employer exerted control over the worker, where, when and how the worker worked, whether the worker could profit from his own efforts, and whether…

Absenteeism

In the current climate of Rugby World Cup fever and crises caused by natural disasters such as earthquakes, snow and hail, floods and similar, no doubt your organisation is being affected by absenteeism, whether by employee choice or not.   Rugby World Cup Sure, we’d all like to have game day off, but the reality…

August 2011 Newsletter

Need help with restructuring and redundancy? This newsletter provides a basic step by step guide to restructuring. We also outline the importance of providing all relevant information during the restructuring process, following the recent Employment Court decision from the Vice Chancellor of Massey v. Wrigley and Kelly case. There are some important privacy considerations to…