The Government has today, announced changes in criteria to qualify for the COVID-19 Wage Subsidy Extension.
The criteria previously required employers to demonstrate a 50% decline in revenue for the last 30 days prior to applying (in comparison to the same period in 2019).
This has changed to a 40% decline in revenue for a 30 day period in the 40 days before applying (starting no earlier than 10 May 2020), compared to a similar period last year.Read More
The Employment Court has just released its decision in the matter of Leota v Parcel Express Couriers Limited, finding that Mr Leota is an employee and therefore entitled to bring a personal grievance against Parcel Express. While this decision is limited to the facts of the case, it is easy to see it forming the basis of a wider application for courier drivers, and other workers purported to be contractors.Read More
Many people seem unclear about whether employees can be required to use their annual holidays; and whether the wage subsidy can be allocated to payment of holiday pay.
The answers are:
Preparing for Level 3 will be no easy task. It certainly will not be business as usual. You have a few days to plan how you will do this.
All businesses operating under Level 3 must have a COVID-19 safety plan that sets out how they will operate safely. Worksafe is all over this; and has developed a plan applicable to all businesses. Most industry groups have also been working on plans for their particular sector, which you should review. The key issues to consider in your plan are:
Slipping under the radar at the end of last week was the Epidemic Preparedness (Employment Relations Act 2000 - Collective Bargaining) Immediate Modification Order 2020. Its purpose is to ensure that no party to collective bargaining is disadvantaged by the COVID-19 lockdown.Read More
On 20 April, the Government intends announcing its plans for lifting Level 4. While nobody expects that to occur before 22 April, there is growing pressure from many quarters to move to Level 2 as soon as possible so the economy can start to flow.Read More
Your obligations under the wage subsidy scheme depend on whether you applied before or after 4pm on 27 March (ie date of application, not date of receipt of payment).
The scheme focuses on three groups of workers in essential businesses:
*At risk groups are:
This month we have three public holidays:
I have read a number of commentaries by politicians, bureaucrats, lawyers and others about how employers should be complying with their employment law obligations during the lockdown. It is clear that most of these people are not directly affected by the situation and have not had to deal with the reality of seeing their business rapidly disappear.Read More
Previously the Government’s advice was that employers must pay the full amount of wage subsidy to the employees for whom it was claimed. This created a situation where some employees could receive more than they otherwise would have if they had worked normally.Read More
Since 4.00 pm on 27 March: