Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 

Small Business Inundated With Law Changes

10 December 2004

MEDIA RELEASE

Small Business Inundated With Law Changes

New Zealand small and medium businesses are swimming in a sea of legislative changes.

In recent months businesses have had to take on new employee protections in the event of restructuring, changes to parental leave entitlements, amendments to the Employment Relations Act relating to collective bargaining and agreements, preparation for the latest Smoke-free amendments and in the upcoming holidays they will have to understand the Holidays Act as it stands after the latest amendments.

While big business is not immune to these legislative changes, past research shows that implementing new practices and regulations, and managing their enforcement, has a greater impact on small businesses.

Small business effectively spends more time per employee on compliance issues, with firms with between 1 and 5 staff spending 41 hours annually per employee on compliance issues compared to firms with between 21 and 99 staff who average nine hours per employee.

Auckland Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Michael Barnett says many of the Holidays Act amendments have been created to clarify areas that appeared open to interpretation or needed clarification, but any legislative change means small business must set aside the time to understand the law, implement it correctly and monitor on an ongoing basis to ensure they are complying.

Some of the clarifications include all employees who work on a public holiday being paid at least time and a half for the hours that they work. If an employee’s agreement already contains an additional rate such as double time for working on a public holiday then the employee will not get time and a half on top of this rate. If the penal rate is less than time and a half then the employer need only top this up to the time and a half rate for the hours worked. Consequently, if an employee works on a public holiday, they will be entitled to whichever is greater of either the rate stated in their employment agreement or time and a half, as stipulated in the Holidays Act.

Confusion over sick leave entitlements for public holidays has also been dealt with in the recent amendments. An employee who takes sick leave on a public holiday is not entitled to payment at time and a half or an alternative day. The day should be treated as an un-worked public holiday rather than as sick leave or bereavement leave and the employee should be paid for a day off.

The Auckland Chamber of Commerce and Phillips Fox have created a single document, designed to walk businesses through the amendments to the Holidays Act and their responsibilities and entitlements under the law as it stands now.

Businesses can visit www.b-vital.com for a free download of the Holidays Act document [from Thursday 2 December].

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Westpac: Sets Out Plan To Go Cheque-Free

Westpac NZ has announced details of its plan to phase out cheques, after signalling in May that it would be supporting a move to other forms of payment. Cheques will cease to be available as a means of payment after 25 June 2021. Westpac NZ General ... More>>

ALSO:

NZTA: Major New Zealand Upgrade Programme Projects Go To Tender

Two major New Zealand Upgrade Programme projects are beginning tenders for construction. The New Zealand Upgrade Programme is a $6.8 billion investment to get our cities moving, to save lives and boost productivity in growth areas. The first Auckland ... More>>

Reserve Bank: RBNZ Seeks To Preserve Benefits Of Cash

The Reserve Bank – Te Pūtea Matua is taking on a new role of steward of the cash system “to preserve the benefits of cash for all who need them”, Assistant Governor Christian Hawkesby told the Royal Numismatics Society of New Zealand annual conference ... More>>

ALSO:

Economy: Double-Dip Recession Next Year, But Housing Rolls On

New Zealand's economy is expected to slip back into recession early next year as delayed job losses, falling consumer spending, and the absence of international tourists bites into growth. More>>

ALSO:

Microsoft New Zealand: Microsoft Expands “Highway To A Hundred Unicorns” Initiative To Support Startups In Asia Pacific

New Zealand, 14 October 2020 – Today Microsoft for Startups launches the Highway to a Hundred Unicorns initiative in Asia Pacific to strengthen the region’s startup ecosystem. This follows the initiative’s success in India, where 56 startups were ... More>>

Fonterra: Farmers Taking Another Step Towards New Zealand’s Low Emissions Food Production

They’re hot off the press and intended to help take the heat out of climate change. Fonterra farmers are already among the world’s most sustainable producers of milk and now have an additional tool in their sustainability toolbox. Over the last few ... More>>

ALSO:



Courts: Businessman Eric Watson Sentenced To A Four-Month Jail Term

New Zealand businessman Eric Watson has been sentenced to a four-month jail term in the UK for contempt of court, TVNZ reports. More>>

OECD: Area Employment Rate Falls By 4.0 Percentage Points, To 64.6% In Second Quarter Of 2020

The OECD area employment rate – the share of the working-age population with jobs – fell by 4.0 percentage points, to 64.6%, in the second quarter of 2020, its lowest level since the fourth quarter of 2010. Across the OECD area, 560 million persons ... More>>

Spark: Turns On 5G In Auckland And Offers A Glimpse Into The Future Of Smart Cities

Spark turned on 5G in downtown Auckland today and has partnered with Auckland Transport (AT) to showcase some of the latest in IoT (Internet of Things) technology and demonstrate what the future could look like for Auckland’s CBD with the power of 5G. 5G is ... More>>

Stats NZ: Monthly Migration Remains Low

Since the border closed in late-March 2020, net migration has averaged about 300 a month, Stats NZ said today. In the five months from April to August 2020, overall net migration was provisionally estimated at 1,700. This was made up of a net gain ... More>>

University of Canterbury: Proglacial Lakes Are Accelerating Glacier Ice Loss

Lake Tasman, New Zealand | 2016 | Photo: Dr Jenna Sutherland Meltwater lakes that form at glacier margins cause ice to recede much further and faster compared to glaciers that terminate on land, according to a new study. But the effects of these glacial ... More>>

ALSO:

Dairy: Fonterra Sells China Farms

Fonterra has agreed to sell its China farms for a total of $555 million (RMB 2.5 billion*1), after successfully developing the farms alongside local partners. Inner Mongolia Natural Dairy Co., Ltd, a subsidiary of China Youran Dairy Group Limited ... More>>

ALSO: