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New Zealand - Working time - 2011


LAST UPDATE

18 November 2011

SOURCES


Name of Act

Minimum Wage Act 1983, No.115 of 1983, Official Gazette, Acts, No. 115, as reprinted 1 April 2008. Published by New Zealand Parliamentary Counsel Office at http://legislation.govt.nz/ and accessed 17 November 2011.

Name of Act

Holidays Act, Act No. 129 of 2003, as reprinted 1 April 2011. Published by New Zealand Parliamentary Counsel Office at http://legislation.govt.nz/ and accessed 17 November 2011.

Name of Act

Employment Relations Act 2000, Public Act No 24 of 2000, dated 19 August 2000, as reprinted 1 July 2011. Published by New Zealand Parliamentary Counsel Office at http://legislation.govt.nz/ and accessed 17 November 2011.

LEGAL DEFINITIONS


Employee/worker

Employee means any person of any age employed by an employer to do any work for hire or reward under a contract of service, including a homeworker. Volunteers who are not, and do not expect to be, rewarded for work performed as a volunteer and film production workers are excluded from this definition.
Employment Relations Act 2000 §6
Holidays Act 2003 §5

Employer

Employer means a person employing any employee or employees, and includes a person engaging or employing a homeworker.
Employment Relations Act 2000 §5
Holidays Act 2003 §5(2)

NORMAL HOURS LIMITS


Daily hours limit


General limit

No statutory limit on daily working hours identified.
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 2009: (No general statutory daily limit.)

Weekly hours limit


General limit

The Minimum Wage Act establishes a normative limit of 40 hours per week. However, this limit is subject to agreement between the parties in that it requires that parties who are covered by the Minimum Wage Act, and are entering into an employment agreement under the Employment Relations Act, fix the contractual maximum number of working hours (exclusive of overtime) at 40 hours per week, unless the parties agree to a higher number.

No other statutory limitation on weekly hours identified.
Minimum Wage Act 1983 §11B
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 2009: 40 hours
  • 2007: 40 hours
  • 1995: 40 hours.

OVERTIME WORK


Criteria for overtime


General

No statutory criteria for requiring workers to perform overtime identified.
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Limits on overtime hours


General limits

No statutory limits on overtime identified.
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 2009: As agreed by the worker and employer in the employment contract or by collective agreement.
  • 2007: As agreed by the worker and employer in the employment contract or by collective agreement.
  • 1995: No legal provision.

Compensation for overtime work


Overtime rate(s)

No statutory requirements with respect to compensation of overtime identified.
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 1995: No general provisions.

Notice of requirement to work overtime


General provisions

No notice requirements with respect to overtime work identified.

SCHEDULES


General

Where parties covered by the Minimum Wage Act fix the worker’s maximum working hours at 40 hours (or less) per week, the parties must endeavour to fix the daily working hours so that they are worked on not more than 5 days of the week.

No other provisions regulating scheduling identified.
Minimum Wage Act 1983 §11B(3)

REST PERIODS


Rest breaks


General provisions

An employee’s rest break entitlement is determined by the length of time the employee is required to work each day, as follows:
(1) For working days of 2-4 hours - one 10 minute paid rest break;
(2) For working days of 4-6 hours - one 10 minute paid rest break and one 30 minute meal break;
(3) For working days of 6-8 hours - two 10 minute paid rest breaks and one 30 minute meal break; and
(4) For working days of over 8 hours - two 10 minute paid rest breaks and one 30 minute meal break for the first 8 hours of work, with additional breaks accruing as in (1) and (2) above, as if the employee’s working day had started at the end of the 8th hour.
Employment Relations Act 2000 §§69ZC, 69ZD
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 2009: An employee is entitled to a break * of 10 minutes (paid) for work of 2-4 hours * of 10 minutes (paid) plus a 30-minutes meal break for work of 4-6 hours * of twice 10 minutes (paid) plus one 30 minutes meal break for work exceeding 6 hours (plus for a work between 10 and 12 hours a 10 minutes (paid) break and work between 12 and 14 hours an additional 30 minutes meal break).
  • 1995: To be agreed between the parties.

Special categories


» Pregnant workers/recent birth

An employer must ensure that, so far as is reasonable and practicable in the circumstances, appropriate breaks are provided to an employee who is breastfeeding and wishes to breastfeed during a work period.

Such breaks will only be paid if agreed between the parties.
Employment Relations Act 2000 §69Y

Daily rest periods


Duration

No statutory provision for daily rest periods identified.
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 2009: No general statutory provisions on daily rest.
  • 1995: To be agreed between the parties.

Weekly rest periods


Duration


» General

No statutory entitlement to weekly rest periods identified.
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 2009: As agreed by the worker and employer in the employment contract or by collective agreement.
  • 1995: n.a.

ANNUAL LEAVE AND PUBLIC HOLIDAYS


ANNUAL LEAVE


Qualifying period

Employees must have completed 12 months’ continuous employment to be entitled to annual leave, although an employer may allow an employee to take an agreed portion of the employee’s annual holidays entitlement in advance.
Holidays Act 2003 §§16, 20

Duration


» General

Employees are entitled to not less than 4 weeks’ paid annual holiday.
Holidays Act 2003 §16(1)
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 2009: 4 weeks, of which 2 weeks have to be granted without interruption.
  • 2007: 3 weeks (to 1 April 2007) 4 weeks (from 1 April 2007)
  • 1995: 3 weeks.

» Exceptions

Up to one week of each year’s annual leave entitlement may be paid out, at the written request of the employee.
Holidays Act 2003 §28A

Payment


» Amount

Annual leave must be paid at a rate that is based on the greater of:
(i) the employee’s ordinary weekly pay as at the beginning of the annual holiday; or
(ii) the employee’s average weekly earnings for the 12 months immediately before the end of the last pay period before the annual holiday.
Holidays Act 2003 §21(2)
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» Date of payment

An employer must pay an employee for an annual holiday before the holiday is taken unless:
(a) the employer and employee agree that the employee is to be paid in the pay that relates to the period during which the holiday is taken; or
(b) the employee’s employment has come to an end.
Holidays Act 2003 §27
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Schedule and splitting

Annual leave is to be taken at a time agreed between the employer and the employee. In reaching such agreement, an employer :
(a) must allow an employee to take annual leave within 12 months from the date on which the leave entitlement arose;
(b) must allow an employee to take at least 2 weeks of his or her annual holidays entitlement in a continuous period;
(c) must not unreasonably withhold consent to an employee’s request to take annual leave; and
(d) may allow the employee to take an agreed portion of the employee’s annual leave entitlement in advance.

An employer may only require an employee to take annual leave if:
(a) the employer and employee are unable to reach agreement as to when the employee will take his or her annual holidays; or
(b) the employee has annual leave entitlements at the commencement of a closedown period (as defined).
In either case, the employer must give the employee at least 14 days’ notice of the requirement to take annual leave.
Holidays Act 2003 §§18(3), 19(2), 20, 29, 30, 31, 32
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Work during annual leave

No relevant provisions identified.

PUBLIC HOLIDAYS


Number and dates

The Holidays Act provides for 11 public holidays, as follows:
(1) Christmas Day
(2) Boxing Day
(3) New Year’s Day
(4) 2 January
(5) Waitangi Day
(6) Good Friday
(7) Easter Monday
(8) ANZAC Day
(9) the birthday of the reigning Sovereign (observed on the first Monday in June)
(10) Labour Day (being the fourth Monday in October)
(11) the day of the anniversary of a province or the day locally observed as that day
Holidays Act 2003 §§43, 44

Payment

If an employee does not work on a public holiday and the day would otherwise be a working day for the employee, the employer must pay the employee not less than the employee’s relevant daily pay or average daily pay for that day.
Holidays Act 2003 §49

Work on Public Holidays


» Criteria

An employer may require an employee to work on a public holiday if:
(a) the public holiday falls on a day on which, but for it being a public holiday, would otherwise be a working day for the employee; and
(b) the employee is required to work on the public holiday under the employee’s employment agreement.
Holidays Act 2003 §47

» Compensation

If an employee works (in accordance with his or her employment agreement) on any part of a public holiday, the employer must pay the employee the greater of:
(a) the portion of the employee’s relevant daily pay or average daily pay (less any penalty rates) that relates to the time actually worked on the day plus half that amount again; or
(b) the portion of the employee’s relevant daily pay that relates to the time actually worked on the day.

The employer must also grant the employee another day’s paid holiday, instead of a public holiday, if the public holiday falls on a day that would otherwise be a working day for the employee, and the employee works (in accordance with his or her employment agreement) on any part of that day.
Holidays Act 2003 §§50, 56, 60
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EMERGENCY FAMILY LEAVE

No general entitlement to emergency family leave identified. However, employees who have worked for an employer for a continous 6 month period (or for an average of 10 hours a week and at least 1 hour per day or 40 hours per month during the last 6 months) are entitled to:
(a) 3 days’ bereavement leave on the death of a spouse or partner, parent or parent-in-law, child, brother or sister, grandparent, or grandchild; and
(b) 1 day’s bereavement leave on the death of any other person, if the employer accepts, having regard to relevant factors, that the employee has suffered a bereavement as a result of the death.

Bereavement leave is to be paid at the employee’s relevant daily pay or average daily pay for each day of bereavement leave taken.
Holidays Act 2003 §§69, 70, 71

PART-TIME WORK


General provisions

No statutory provisions specific to part-time work identified.

NIGHT WORK


Criteria for night work

No statutory provisions specific to night work identified.

SHIFT WORK


Criteria for shift work

No statutory provisions specific to shift work identified.

ON-CALL WORK


Calculation of working time

No statutory provisions regulating on-call work identified, beyond the requirement to provide an alternative day’s paid leave to employees who are on-call on a public holiday:
(a) are called by the employer to work on the public holiday day, or
(b) are not called in but have their freedom of action restricted by the on-call condition such that, for all practical purposes, the employees have not had a whole holiday.
Holidays Act 2003 §59

FLEXITIME


Criteria

No provisions regulating flexi-time identified.

CASUAL WORK


General provisions

No provisions specific to casual work identified.

SHORT-TIME WORK/WORK-SHARING


General provisions

No provisions regulating short-time work or work-sharing arrangements identified.

RIGHT TO CHANGE WORKING HOURS


Type of changes permitted

The employee may request changes to his or her hours, days or place of work.
Employment Relations Act 2000 §69AAA

Limitations

An employee is only entitled to request a change if he or she has the care of any person and, as at the date the request is made, has been employed by his or her employer for the immediately preceding 6 months.

Employees are not entitled to make a further request to vary his or her terms and conditions of employment within 12 months of an earlier request (whether the previous request was approved or refused).
Employment Relations Act 2000 §§69AAB(2), 69AAD

Reasons for request


Carers

An employee with responsibility for the care of any person may request his or her employer to vary the employee’s terms and conditions of employment relating to the employee’s working arrangements.
Employment Relations Act 2000 §§69AAA, 69AAB

Employer duties

An employer must deal with a request as soon as possible but not later than 3 months after receiving it and notify the employee whether his or her request has been approved or refused.

If the request is refused, the employer must notify the employee of the ground for refusal and provide an explanation of the reasons for that ground.
Employment Relations Act 2000 §69AAE

Permissible reasons for refusal

An employer may refuse a request only if the employee is not eligible to make a request; or the request cannot be accommodated on 1 or more of the following grounds:
(1) inability to reorganise work among existing staff;
(2) inability to recruit additional staff;
(3) detrimental impact on quality;
(4) detrimental impact on performance;
(5) insufficiency of work during the periods the employee proposes to work;
(6) planned structural changes;
(7) burden of additional costs;
(8) detrimental effect on ability to meet customer demand.

However, an employer must refuse a request if (a) the request is from an employee who is bound by a collective agreement; and (b) the request relates to working arrangements to which the collective agreement applies; and (c) the employee’s working arrangements would be inconsistent with the collective agreement if the employer were to approve the request.
Employment Relations Act 2000 §69AAF

Procedure


Carers

A request must be in writing and specify the following matters:
(a) the variation of the working arrangements requested;
(b) whether the variation is permanent or for a period of time;
(c) the date on which the employee proposes that the variation take effect and its duration, if applicable;
(d) how the variation will enable the employee to provide better care for the person concerned;
(e) what changes, if any, the employer may need to make to the employer’s arrangements if the employee’s request is approved.

Upon receiving the employee’s request, the employer must deal with it as soon as possible, but not later than 3 months after receiving it and notify the employee whether his or her request has been approved or refused.

In the event that the employee considers the employer has not dealt with the matter as required, he or she may refer the matter to the Labour Inspector for assistance and, if necessary, mediation. If mediation does not resolve the matter, the employee may apply to the Employment Relations Authority for a determination within 12 months from the date on which the employer’s response was received or due.
Employment Relations Act 2000 §§69AAC, 69AAE, 69AAG, 69AAH, 69AAI

Right to return to prior working time

No relevant provisions identified.

Right to information

No information obligations specific to requests to change working arrangements identified, beyond the requirement that the employer notify the employee of the grounds of any refusal and provide an explanation of these grounds.
Employment Relations Act 2000 §69AAE

INFORMATION & CONSULTATION


Information

Employers are required to keep records of employees’ leave entitlements, periods of leave taken and, where necessary for the purpose of calculating the employee’s pay, the hours between which the employee is employed on each day and the days of the employee’s employment during each pay period.

The employer must keep these records for a period of at least 6 years and provide copies or excerpts upon the request of the relevant employee, his or her authorised representative or a Labour Inspector.
Employment Relations Act 2000 §§130, 229
Holidays Act 2003 §81

Consultation

No consultation requirements specific to working time arrangements identified. However, the Employment Relations Act codifies a duty of good faith in relation to all employment relationships, including relationships between employers and employees and employers and unions, which requires the parties to be active and constructive in establishing and maintaining a productive employment relationship in which the parties are, among other things, responsive and communicative.
Employment Relations Act 2000 §4(1), (1A), (2)

Results generated on: 21st April 2014 at 09:12:13.
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