Rights & Responsibilities

A BRIEF OVERVIEW OF EMPLOYERS' RIGHTS & RESPONSIBILITIES

As an employer, what do I have to do? According to employment law, you must act in good faith, remain communicative and uphold the Employment Relations Act whether you are a large or small business. 
What documents do I have to keep? You need to keep records of pay, holiday pay and other leave entitlements. You also need to keep copies of employment agreements and amendments or changes to employment conditions. You should keep documentation of any issues, both with an employee and health and safety concerns. This is not an exhaustive list, and if you have any areas of concern then we recommend seeking advice from an employment law specialist. 
 
Why does it seem that the employee has more rights than the employer? It can sometimes seem this way! Employers have the same rights as an employee to a safe working environment and employees do need to act in good faith and remaining communicative as well. However most processes do work to guide the employer in order to protect them from grievances and making errors as they have more control over the employment relationship than an employee. 
 
 

Does an employer have to give a reason for terminating under 90 day trial?

Yes if an employee asks

Do I have to give a reference?

No, unless you have a policy or clause that says otherwise.

Do I only have to say nice things in a reference? 

No, however you must be truthful. We'd recommend avoiding malicious or disparaging claims. 

Can I ask an employee to leave if I'm worried about their affect on my business?

It depends. This may be considered a suspension so we would recommend that you have a good reason and seek advice.

Can I deduct money from an employer (ie, if I overpay them)?

You can only deduct legal requirements like tax and child support payments without authorisation. Everythingelse needs to have the employee's consent. 

What can I do if an employee treats me badly?

You have the same entitlements to safety and wellbeing as your employee. You must however ensure that you act in good faith.

Can I penalise an employee for things they do in their personal time or things they say on social media?

Potentially. If an employee can be seen to be representing the business then you may be able to take action. This includes on social media. However we recommend seeking advice beforehand as this may be a fine line.