Employment Relations Amendment Act
Employers have just a few months to prepare for the Employment Relations Amendment Act 2014 which will come into force on 6 March 2015.
It amends the Employment Relations Act 2000 and makes a number of key changes, including:
• Allowing unions and employers to initiate bargaining at the same time and entitling employers to reduce employees' pay in response to partial strikes;
• Extending the right to request flexible working arrangements to all employees;
• Providing greater flexibility in respect of the time and duration of rest/ meal breaks and introducing compensatory measures where an employer fails to provide a break;
• Clarifying (and limiting) the requirement for employers to disclose information pursuant to the duty of good faith in section 4 of the ERA 2000: and
• Requiring the ERA to give an oral determination, or an oral indication of its preliminary findings, at the conclusion of the investigation hearing. It must then follow up with a written determination within three months of the investigation meeting (or receipt of the last information or submissions from the parties, if later).
Employers may need to update their policies or amend their employment agreements in order to represent these amendments – particularly around meal breaks.
Contact Paddy Battersby on 09 838 6338 for HR assistance on this one.