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Test Your Knowledge

Posted by on 25 September 2013 | 0 Comments

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Q. Can I recover an overpayment to an employee if I make a mistake with their pay?

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Reliance on Restraint of Trade Tested Again

Posted by on 25 September 2013 | 0 Comments

There have been many cases about the validity of a restraint of trade clause in an employee’s employment agreement.  In these cases the reasonableness of the restrictions and, therefore, the wording of the particular clause are examined.  What the employer is trying to protect, such as confidential information, and whether this information is akin to a trade secret is considered.  The period of restriction and the physical area or particular competitors the clause covers is also considered e.g. the clause may apply to a city or region, or could require the employee not work for a company that is in competition with the employer.

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Think Twice Before Calling the Police

Posted by on 25 September 2013 | 0 Comments

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A recent case highlighted the perils of contacting the police prematurely when you suspect an employee of theft. It cost the employer 3 months lost wages, $5,000 compensation and costs.

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Tips for Effective Reference Checking

Posted by on 25 September 2013 | 0 Comments

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Candidate reference checking is an essential part of the hiring process and a valuable tool for gathering information and evidence about applicants, their suitability to the role and your organisation.

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She Won’t be Right, Mate

Posted by on 25 September 2013 | 0 Comments

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At the end of this year maximum fines are on the increase as the government raises the bar for health and safety in the workplace.  The revised legislation will, among other things, make sure that directors and business owners have more reason to know and understand their responsibilities; they will be spelt out in the new Act.

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Work Trials in Recruitment

Posted by on 25 September 2013 | 0 Comments

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This last month has seen a number of ‘interesting’ decisions from the Employment Relations Authority (ERA) and Court. A local case is of particular significance, creating a new set of rules for employers when they use practical work tests in recruitment. The key lessons are work trials may be deemed to be employment depending on how you conduct them, which would mean they should be paid. Once you pay them they become your employee and you have to go through the normal processes to dismiss if you don’t want them. If you do subsequently employ the applicant you can’t utilise the 90 day trial period because they have previously been your employee. This Court decision is complicated and very concerning. To understand the full implications of this Employment Court decision read read on below. In the Judge’s final comments he said ‘I do not underestimate the practical consequences of this decision to employers in the retail food and beverage sector wishing to assess the merits of prospective employees.’ My advice - tread with extreme care.

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