Legislative changes now in effect for business owners

5th April, 2016

Along with the new financial year, this month marks the introduction of two new key pieces of legislation affecting business owners:

  1. Employment Standards Legislation Bill: came into effect 1 April 2016
  2. Health & Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSWA): came into effect 4 April 2016

Why the changes?

The new employment laws aim to ensure New Zealand workplaces are productive and fair.

The new HSWA is a new approach to working safer that aims to reduce workplace injury and deaths by 25 percent by 2020.

As a business owner, it’s important that you know what the changes are and what your responsibilities are.

Health and Safety at work

The new law shouldn’t be a reason to panic. If you’re doing the right thing under the current law, then it’s unlikely that you need to make major changes.

However, if you’re less clear about the health and safety risks in your business or what processes you have in place to mitigate these, now is a good time to review and document these practices, team culture and get everyone involved to manage risks.

Visit to understand your role and duties under the new Act.

If you need help or would like to talk to someone about getting your health and safety system under control, visit

New employment laws

The key outcome of the new employment laws is that employers should immediately review and verify that all written employment agreements meet the new requirements. Business owners must make sure they have a record-keeping system that accurately calculates and tracks hours worked for each day in a pay period, and the pay for those hours.

Visit for an employment toolkit, designed to help you get up to speed with these changes and ensure you comply with all the requirements.

If you need would like to talk to someone about employment law, visit

If you need help getting your HR system under control, visit

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