The Construction Contracts (Retention Money) Amendment Bill - Open for Public Submission

The Government is once again looking to impose further statutory controls over how contractors are to handle and protect retention moneys owed to its sub-contractors - this time with civil monetary penalties facing the construction companies and their directors for non-compliance.
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Increase to Sick Leave - Date Confirmed

Last month we advised clients that the Bill to increase sick leave from five days to 10 days had been enacted. The new legislation comes into effect on 24 July 2021. We have have received some questions regarding sick leave entitlements, we have set out the questions below.
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Rocket Lab Ordered to Pay $97,000.00 to an Employee

This week the Employment Relations Authority ordered Rocket Lab Limited ("Rocket Lab") to pay $97,000.00 to an employee for an unjustified dismissal. Mr Owen was employed by Rocket Lab in January 2018 as a Vehicle Test Manager. Rocket Lab did not give Mr Owen an induction, he was essentially expected to 'get on with it'.
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Changes on the way for the Holidays Act

Employers and employees alike have long been grappling with the Holidays Act 2003 ("Act") due to its complexity. Difficulties with compliance has resulted in employees receiving incorrect payments, being unaware of their statutory entitlements and employers owing significant amounts of historical underpayments. It is no surprise the Labour Government's announcement to review the Act was welcomed by many.
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Is There Such a Thing as a Conflict Free Separation?

A separation doesn't have to be fraught with conflict, including when Lawyers are involved. If you have recently separated and need some assistance with resolving a dispute involving property and/or children you may want to consider doing so under the framework of Collaborative Advocacy.
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Brougham v Regan - The Requirements for a Valid Contract of Guarantee

On 30 October 2020 the Supreme Court delivered a landmark judgment in the context of contracts of guarantee in the case of Brougham v Regan [2020] NZSC 118. A summary of the key facts of the matter and important points in the Court's decision follow.
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Can you Require or Encourage an Employee to take the Covid-19 Vaccine?

Recently there have been a number of announcements by large employers overseas making the Covid-19 vaccine mandatory for customers and or employees. However, in New Zealand the Ministry of Health has confirmed that it will not be making the Covid-19 vaccination mandatory for New Zealanders. Given the current climate, employers in New Zealand are considering their options, including whether to make the vaccination mandatory in the workplace or if even if they can encourage their employees to have the vaccine.
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Amendments to the Residential Tenancies Act 1986

Vast changes to the Residential Tenancies Act, what landlords need to know of their rights and obligations to tenants. With the increasing number of New Zealanders renting, Parliament has seen it fit to make changes to the Residential Tenancies Act 1986 ("the Act") to ensure renters are occupying warm, dry and liveable properties. The reformed Act looks to strike a balance between providing security and stability to tenants, while protecting landlord interest. It is important that landlords have an understanding of the new obligations and responsibilities the amended legislation imposes upon them, along with the penalties they may incur if not followed.
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Managing Employee Leave Over the Christmas Period

It’s that time of year again, Christmas is upon us. Many workplaces in New Zealand will be planning their annual closedown over the Christmas period, or thinking about employee entitlements. We have set out some common questions we are often asked at this time of the year.
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Education Sector Employee Awarded $100,000.00 in Disregarded Sick Leave

In a recent Employment Court decision, Canterbury Westland Kindergarten Association Incorporated v Barnes [2020] NZEmpC 199 an employee was awarded more than $100,000.00 in disregarded sick leave caused by bullying in the workplace.
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