The Employment Relations Authority has ordered a company to pay $5000 for failing to provide evidence that they followed the instructions given through an improvement notice.

An improvement notice is used to fix a problem in the way that a company conducts business.

Complaints were received about the company from a former employee about wage and holiday entitlements. The Labour Inspectorate conducted an investigation and found that the company had breached the requirement to record wages, time worked, holidays and leave, as well as the fact that their employment agreements did not include an employee protection provision.

This provision protects an employee in the event that the company decides to restructure and is a mandatory provision that the company failed to include in their employment agreements.

The Labour Inspectorate issued the notice stating that the company needed to fix the issues within a two and a half months.

The issue the ERA had to determine was whether the company failed to follow this notice.

The company claimed that it had fixed the issues laid out in the improvement notice, but no evidence to suggest that this was true had been submitted and there was no proof that they fixed the issues in the required time frame.

The ERA decided that the company had failed to meet the requirements given by the notice, because the company failed to provide proof that they had fixed the issues.

If an improvement notice is served, it is important to meet the requirements laid out by the notice, or there can be costly consequences. In this situation, if the company had fixed the issues set out in the notice and provided proof within the correct time frame, they could have avoided the penalty.

If there is confusion surrounding employee entitlements or employment agreements, it is wise to seek advice from a professional with experience in the area.


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