What you need to do

If you have been named as the respondent in an application to the Employment Relations Authority, you will be sent a copy of the statement of problem and any supporting documents, along with a "statement in reply" form.

Once you have received the statement of problem, you usually have 14 days to provide your statement in reply. We may set another timeframe in some cases – so check the information you have received carefully.

The statement in reply is very important because it is your chance to respond to the applicant’s claims and to put forward your views, version of events and relevant documents.

You do not have to pay a fee to submit your statement in reply.

Complete your statement in reply

The statement in reply should include:

  • your view of the problem, in plain language
  • your version of the facts
  • details of any steps you have already taken to resolve the problem, such as going to mediation
  • relevant documents.

If you believe that we do not have jurisdiction (this means power given to us by legislation) to investigate some or all of the claims in the Statement of Problem, include your reasoning in your statement in reply.

Download the statement in reply form:

Statement in reply [DOCX, 27 KB]

If you have been named as a controlling third party respondent in an employment issue, you will need to fill in a different form.

Download the controlling third party statement in reply form:

Statement in reply for controlling third party [DOCX, 21 KB]

Lodge your statement in reply

Lodge via email

Email your statement in reply to the relevant ERA office.

Contact us

Lodge online

To lodge your statement in reply online, you'll need a RealMe® Login.

Lodge online(external link)

Lodge by post or in person

You can also lodge your statement in reply by post, or by taking it into one of our offices.

Contact us

  • If you do not file your statement in reply within the timeframe

    Not filing a statement in reply will not stop us from conducting our investigation into the applicant’s claims – it just means that you may not get to present your side of the story.

    If we are satisfied that the statement of problem was served on you and you do not file a statement in reply, we will use the statement of problem to decide if the matter should:

    • go to mediation
    • proceed to a case management conference, or
    • be set down for an investigation meeting.

    If you still want to provide a statement of reply, you need to email us as soon as possible to ask for permission to file your statement in reply out of time. In your email:

    • confirm that you want to defend some or all of the applicant’s claims
    • explain why you were not able to file your statement in reply in time
    • include your statement of reply and any supporting documents that are not already attached to the statement of problem.
  • If you need more time to file your statement in reply

    You must apply for more time as soon as possible. Send us an email that includes:

    • the reasons why you cannot file your Statement in Reply within 14 days
    • how much extra time you need and why.

    The Applicant will be given the opportunity to comment on your request to extend the time to lodge a statement in reply.

    We will decide whether or not to grant you extra time.

  • If you want to go to mediation before filing your statement in reply

    If you want to go to mediation after receiving the statement of problem, we recommend you still file your statement in reply within 14 days. This is because it is more helpful if both parties know each other's view of the problem before going to mediation.

    If you want to attend mediation first, you can apply to us to put the statement in reply on hold pending the outcome of mediation.

    You will need to send an email to the Authority, the applicant, and their representative if they have one. In the email, explain why you want to file your statement in reply after mediation and not before it.

    If mediation is not successful, you will then have 14 days to submit your statement in reply.

    Going to mediation

  • If you want to make a counterclaim

    If you want to make a counterclaim, it must relate to something that has arisen out of the employment relationship.

    The Authority may require you to file your counterclaim by lodging your own Statement of Problem and paying the filing fee.

    Lodge your application

Next steps

Once you have submitted your statement in reply, you will need to follow the resolution process, including naming your witnesses and attending the case management conference and investigation meeting.

The resolution process