EMPLOYMENT LAW ANNUAL HOLIDAY Prepared by Lupetea Veikoso


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WHAT IS EMPLOYMENT LAW?
Employment law is a broad area encompassing all areas of the employer/employee relationship except the negotiation process covered by labor law and collective bargaining. Employment law is governed by thousands of federal and state statutes, administrative regulations, and judicial decisions. Some of the topics included in employment law include:
  • Collective Bargaining
  • Employment Discrimination
  • Unemployment Compensation
  • Pensions
  • Workplace Safety

TOPIC QUESTION: WHAT IS THE EMPLOYEE ANNUAL HOLIDAY ENTITLING?


Under the Holidays Act 2003, employees are entitled to a minimum of four weeks annual holidays after the first year of employment. This is a minimum entitlement and there is nothing preventing the parties negotiating better terms.
The minimum entitlement increased from three to four weeks annual holidays from 1 April 2007.
The key for all employers and employees is:

  • working out and agreeing what the entitlement to four weeks paid annual leave means for them; and
  • ensuring the employee is paid correctly when they take annual holidays or their employment ends.

All employees are entitled to four weeks paid annual holidays

On each anniversary of the date of commencing employment on or after 1 April 2007, the employee is entitled to four weeks paid annual holidays. The leave can be taken at any time agreed between the employer and the employee. Employees must be given the opportunity to take at least two of the four weeks leave in a continuous period, if they wish to do so.
Under two circumstances, the date on which the employee becomes entitled to annual holidays is adjusted:
  • When the business has an annual close down period:
    this is covered on the fact sheet titled
  • When an employee takes unpaid leave of more than a week during the year:
    this is covered on the fact sheet titled

WHAT IS THE AGREEMENT FOR 4 WEEK ANNUAL HOLIDAY?
An employer and employee may agree on what four weeks annual holidays means in their
circumstances. Any agreement should ideally be recorded at the start of the employment
relationship even where it is clear what four weeks means. The agreement must be a genuine
reflection of the employee's working week.Where agreement cannot be reached either party can seek the assistance of a Labour Inspector.
Where employees are permanently employed on a constant work pattern establishing their
entitlement is easy.Where an employee is employed on a work pattern that changes during the year, for
example going from part-time to full-time work, the employer and the employee should agree how
the entitlement to four weeks leave is provided.
Such an agreement may affect annual holiday entitlements the employee has been earning under
their previous work pattern. For example the employee's entitlement could be provided as if the
employee had been a full time employee for the whole period.
Alternatively the entitlement could be proportionate to the time in each form of work. Where a new
agreement is reached, it is strongly advisable to record it in writing.

WHERE DOES THE LAW IN THE AREA COME FROM?
The New Zealand Legal System , when many people think of lega system, they thinks of lawyers and courts. While the courts are an important part of New Zealand's legal system, it also has many other parts. The New Zealand legal system is derived from the English onces and comes from two main sources. The common law, which is a body of law built up from decision made in the United Kingdom and in New Zealand. Developments made by New Zealand courts means that New Zealand now differs from the United Kingdom on some aspects of the common law.

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THESE QUESTIONS DO VISIT THESE WEBSITES
Annual holidays - regular annual closedowns (http://www.ers.govt.nz/holidays_act_2003/closedown.html).
Annual holidays - the effect of unpaid holidays on annual leave
(http://www.ers.govt.nz/holidays_act_2003/unpaid_leave.html).
http://www.justice.govt.nz/publications/global-publications/t/the-new-zealand-legal-system