There are significant legislation changes to the Employment Relations Act coming into force on 6 May 2019. These changes will impact all workplaces and employers should be taking active steps to prepare for the change. Key changes include:

  • Rest and meal breaks will return to a prescriptive approach in terms of length and timing.
  • Trial periods will no longer be available to all employers and will only be available to small to medium sized employers (employers with fewer than 20 employees).
  • Union delegates will be entitled to reasonable paid time off to represent employees.
  • The rates of wages and salary will be required to be included in collective employment agreements.
  • Employer’s obligations to prospective and new employees who are not union members will be changing, including a duty to pass union information.
  • All businesses taking over a contract involving ‘vulnerable’ employees will have to employ the people currently doing the work on the same terms and conditions.

Employers should check their current procedures and policies and ensure that they are prepared for these upcoming changes to take effect.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.