There are three regional Employment Relations Authority offices: in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. The Auckland office covers the top of the North Island, Wellington office covers middle and lower-North Island. The Christchurch office covers the South Island.
COVID-19 UPDATE 13 September 2021
This update sets out arrangements the Employment Relations Authority has made to deal with applications and investigations while Covid-19 Alert Level 4 and Level 2 restrictions are in place (the restrictions) across Aotearoa. It replaces the previous update of 6 September 2021.
In-person investigations meetings
For regions served by the Auckland office (Northland, Auckland, Waikato, King Country, Bay of Plenty and Taupō) in-person investigation meetings are postponed until 24 September 2021. Information about in-person investigation meetings beyond this date will be issued following any government announcements about whether any restrictions will continue beyond the current notified periods.
Wellington and Christchurch offices
For regions served by the Wellington and Christchurch offices, subject to health and safety, venue and travel considerations, in-person investigations meetings will recommence on 13 September 2021.
For all offices
Where appropriate the Authority may continue investigation of some matters via teleconference, audio-visual link (including “Zoom” and “Teams”) or by considering written evidence and written submissions only.
Health and safety requirements for in-person investigation meetings
The Authority is committed to keeping parties, representatives and witnesses safe during in-person investigation meetings. Specific guidance will be issued to parties and representatives in advance of investigation meetings. Parties and representatives are expected to cooperate with the Authority in respect of this guidance.
Postponed investigation meetings
All postponed investigation meetings will be placed on the Authority prioritised waitlist. Parties and representatives will be contacted by the Authority when it is ready to proceed to investigate their matter.
Lodging new applications
Parties and representatives are encouraged to lodge new applications to the Authority online.
Contacting Authority offices
The Authority's administrative staff are available by email to deal with queries about matters.
In all emails please include, where known, the seven-digit file number in the subject line as well as the parties' names.
- Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington, email email@example.com
- Ōtautahi Christchurch, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Case management conferences
Authority Members will convene case management conferences by telephone with parties or their representatives to discuss arrangements for dealing with new applications, including urgent applications.
Unless the Authority has made some other direction, parties should continue to follow timetable directions already made to lodge witness statements and documents for investigation meetings that have been adjourned and other matters under direction. If parties cannot meet their timetabling obligations they should promptly bring this to the Authority’s attention.
Service of statement of problems
During the restrictions postal and courier delivery to the addresses and registered offices of respondents cannot be relied on in the usual way to provide respondents with the opportunity to reply within 14 days.
Instead, Authority Officers will endeavour to contact respondents by telephone and email to advise them of the application and to arrange delivery of the statement of problem by email.
Applicants and representatives are encouraged to ensure their applications include known details of phone numbers and email addresses for respondents. Where service cannot be arranged in this way, service will be deferred for completion once the restrictions are lifted.
Affidavits for interim applications
During the restrictions people providing affidavits in support of applications for interim reinstatement or interim injunctions should ensure these are sworn before a solicitor, justice of the peace or court register. Where this is not possible, parties and representatives should contact the Authority. A procedure is in place to deal with such a circumstance.
Directions to mediation
Parties and representatives are expected to comply with any direction made by the Authority to mediation and to co-operate in taking part in mediation by whatever means the mediator decides is appropriate under s 147 of the Employment Relations Act 2000 (the Act).
Fees for applications
The fee for applications must still be paid during the restrictions. The relevant legislation does not permit the Authority to waive its fees. Any award of costs and expenses made to successful applicants may include reimbursement of those fees.
Timeframes for grievances
Parties and representatives are reminded that the statutory requirements for personal grievances to be raised within 90 days and to pursue a grievance within three years remain unchanged during the restrictions. Any exception to the 90-day rule would require an application under s 114(4) and s 115 of the Act.
- PO Box 105 117
- Auckland 1143
- 09 970 1550
- Level 10, The 280 Centre
- 280 Queen Street
- PO Box 2458
- 04 915 9550
- Mezzanine floor
- 50 Customhouse Quay
- Wellington 6011
- PO Box 13 892
- 03 964 7850
- Level 1, Taylor Shaw House
- 53 Victoria St
- Christchurch 8013
Your contact information, including your address, may be provided to the Mediation Service including where mediation is directed by the Authority, or the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's finance team who administer fee payments for the Authority.