Naoimh McSparron writes for the LawTalk Magazine on the admissibility of covert audio recordings in the employment context, the approach taken by the courts and the Employment Relations Authority (ERA), and the practical effect of that approach for those in an employment dispute.
As time moves on from 14 November, the wider issues related to the damage begin to emerge.
One such issue is the effect of disruption to work due to damage to buildings, loss of suppliers, broken or impassable roads. There is a particular effect on trucking, transport and tourism companies which rely on our roads and infrastructure to carry out their businesses, but there will be others who find the jobs that they are providing are disrupted.
If you employ people or operate a workplace that others come to, and you have been affected by the recent earthquakes, you are likely to be thinking about your health and safety obligations. In an emergency situation like this, what is required of those who control a place of work mostly comes down to common sense. Your key drivers will be to ensure that people are not exposed to harm.
Statistics NZ says that 170,000 workers in our economy do not have written employment agreements. If you or your business is employing someone, it is a legal requirement to have a written employment agreement in place, even if the worker is part-time or casual.
We advise all clients to include a 90 day trial period in the employment agreements for new employees who have not worked for your company before.
A recent decision of the Employment Relations Authority* means that the employment contract needs to clearly specify when the 90 day trial period begins.
It is true that all organisations are going to be affected by the changes to the Act and that the duties of care imposed cannot be transferred or insured against, but it must be made clear that many organisations who prioritise health and safety will be already doing most of what is required.
There have been multiple changes to New Zealand's employment law framework. The biggest of these, changes to the Employment Relations Act, take effect from today. But there are some other changes too which employers will benefit from being aware of.
This Supreme Court decision is the finale in a long running dispute over the apportionment of employee entitlements under the restructuring provisions of the Employment Relations Act 2000 (ERA).
The Supreme Court dismissed LSG's appeal seeking reimbursement of employee entitlements for employees transferred to it under Part 6A of the ERA.
Parliament has voted to pass the Employment Relations Amendment Bill ("the Bill"). It has yet to receive Royal assent and the Bill will become law 4 months after that. The changes do not therefore have immediate effect but they are imminent.
This is a short summary of the main changes which we think will affect our clients.