The government has not said what criteria will be used to determine if we come out of Alert Level 4, although a couple of the factors include the trend and number of new cases, and the source of new cases (community spread being the issue). We have also been told categorically that Alert Level 4 will not be lifted early. The government has however said they will tell us on Monday whether the Alert Level will change. Although not particularly helpful I can understand why. So we are going to have to prepare for all the different possibilities, and communicate this to our teams...
Wage subsidy for vulnerable employees in essential services
Last Thursday the government announced it would provide a wage subsidy for employees who work in essential services but were unable to work because either they have to self isolate because they have COVID-19 or have been exposed to COVID-19, or they or someone in their bubble is considered vulnerable if they caught COVID-19. This may be because they have an underlying health issue, their age, or some other factor. We were anticipating the details and application form of this scheme today. As we go to print there isn’t anything yet on the Ministry’s website. We will let you know the details as soon as we have them. We hope it includes a definition of who is deemed ‘vulnerable’.
Payment for Easter Public Holidays
In tomorrow’s Newsfeed we will provide a Q&A on payment over Easter. If you have a specific question you would like answered please let us know.
Changes to the Companies Act
Please remember the changes have not yet been made to the Act, and the government has advised they will be retrospective to Friday 3 April.
The temporary changes include:
- giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency duties under the Companies Act
- enabling businesses affected by COVID-19 to place existing debts into hibernation until they are able to start trading normally again
- allowing the use of electronic signatures where necessary due to COVID-19 restrictions
- giving the Registrar of Companies the power to temporarily extend deadlines imposed on companies, incorporated societies, charitable trusts and other entities under legislation
- giving temporary relief for entities that are unable to comply with requirements in their constitutions or rules because of COVID-19.
Here is the Companies Office website link for further details.