Some important legislation changes have been introduced recently, and there are more coming up soon. So, we have put together a practical overview for you. If you would like more information or need help in any of these areas, please give us a call or drop us an email.

  • The mandatory seven-day isolation requirement was lifted from 12.01am on Tuesday, 15 August 2023.
    Please note, the Ministry of Health still encourages people to stay at home for five days if unwell or if they test positive for Covid-19.
  • The Covid-19 Leave Support Scheme has been discontinued.
    o With the self-isolation mandate removed, Leave Support Payments are no longer available except where an employee started self-isolation before 13 August.
    o Applications will be totally closed from 11.59pm on 10 October 2023.
  • Going forward, employees will need to use their regular sick leave if not able to work because of Covid-19.
  • Click here to find out more.
The Employment Relations (Extended Time for Personal Grievance for Sexual Harassment) Amendment Act came into force on 13 June 2023.
  • From 13 June 2023, the timeframe for personal grievances related to sexual harassment has been extended from 90 days to 12 months. This change applies to current and new employees.
  • For all other personal grievances, the time to notify the employer is unchanged at 90 days.
  • Employer responsibilities:
    o From 13 June 2023, employers must include the modified time in NEW employment agreements.
    o You don’t need to update existing employment agreements as employees and employers are covered by the amendment to the Act.
    o We recommend that under your good faith obligations, you should advise your employees of the extended timeframe.
  • Click here to find out more.
From 1 October 2023, the minimum pay for Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) workers is increasing. They will also have sick leave entitlements from their first day of employment.
  • From 1 October 2023, employers in the Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) Scheme must pay workers at least the minimum wage + 10% for actual hours worked. This currently works out to be $24.97 per hour.
    The increased pay entitlements include RSE workers on current RSE Limited Visas granted before 1 October 2023.
  • From 1 October 2023, RSE workers will also be entitled to paid sick leave from the day they start work. Currently, RSE workers get sick leave entitlements after working for 6 months, under the Holidays Act 2023. With the new sick leave provisions, RSE workers will be entitled to 2 days sick leave from the day they start work, and an additional 2 days each month until they reach their 10-day entitlement on their 4-month anniversary.
    The sick leave change does not apply to workers granted RSE Limited Visas before 1 October 2023.
  • Click here to find out more.
The Worker Protection (Migrant and Other Employees) Act comes into force on 6 January 2024. It amends the existing Immigration Act 2009, the Employment Relations Act 2000, and the Companies Act 1993. The changes have far-reaching implications if employers breach their employer obligations and the legislation.
  • A migrant worker is anyone working in New Zealand on a temporary visa.
  • The new Act is designed to:
    o Prevent employers from exploiting migrant workers.
    Exploitation of migrant workers can include a range of non-compliance with employer obligations through to forced labour and people trafficking.
    o Provide a framework for offences and penalties.
  • Click here to find out more.
  • We will run a webinar for employers in November covering the Worker Protection (Migrant and Other Employees) Act.
If you have questions now or in coming weeks about any of these legislation changes, please give us a call 07 823 3250 or email us on [email protected].