How to lodge an application to have an employment relationship problem heard by the Employment Relations Authority.
To lodge an application, you need to include certain information and pay the fee. You can apply online, by post or in person.
The Authority will acknowledge your application and send a copy to the named respondent. Once they have received the documents, they will have 14 days to submit their statement in reply.
Before you apply to us for help to resolve a problem, we recommend you:
The form will ask you to:
Download the application form:
To apply to have your problem considered urgently, you must:
We recommend you apply and pay online – this is the fastest and most efficient way of lodging your claim.
You are required to include the correct name and physical address of the respondent on your application form.
We will serve a copy of your application on the respondent at the address you provide – if the documents are returned to us undelivered, we might require you to personally serve them on the respondent.
You may be able to find a company's registered address for service on the New Zealand Companies Office website.
Companies register – Companies Office(external link)
If you do not have access to the Companies Office website, contact us and we can search it for you.
If you work in a "triangular employment" situation, you may want to include a third party as a respondent when you apply to have an employment relationship problem investigated by the Authority.
Triangular employment is when you are employed by one company, but work on a day-to-day basis for someone else. For example, you may be employed by a labour hire company, like a recruitment agency, and hired out to work for a third party. This is called triangular employment because there are 3 parties in the working arrangement:
You can apply to include the controlling third party as a respondent if you think they have caused or contributed to your problem. You'll need to fill in a separate form if you want to include them in your application.
Application for joining controlling third party to personal grievance [DOCX, 24 KB]
You will need to include with your application:
If you have been dismissed from your job and want to return to work (to be reinstated) while the Authority investigates your grievance, your application to the Authority must be accompanied by:
Interim reinstatement may also be available in other situations, for example if you want to challenge your suspension from employment.
Undertaking in relation to application for interim reinstatement [DOCX, 13 KB]
In some cases the Authority can issue an interim injunction. This is an order stopping or requiring particular action until the Authority has investigated the whole matter.
An application for an interim injunction should also identify the final outcome you seek. It must be accompanied by:
The information in the affidavit should address the legal questions that the Authority must consider before determining whether or not to issue an interim injunction. This includes whether there is a seriously arguable case, where the balance of convenience lies for the parties and any affected third parties until the Authority determines the case, and what is the overall justice of the matter until then.
To apply online, you will need:
Apply online now(external link)
You can track progress of your application online once it has been lodged.
The lodgement fee must be paid before your application will be accepted.
Once we have received your application documents and lodgement fee, one of the Authority Officers will send you a written acknowledgement.
The Authority Officer will be your point of contact throughout the process. They cannot provide legal advice or decide if you have a case worth taking further.
Our determinations are a matter of public record and are published online once they are made.
In some special circumstances, we can issue a non-publication order to protect personal or sensitive commercial information from being made publicly available. Requests for a non-publication order need to be in writing. Ensure you include your reasons for seeking the order.
The Authority will send a copy of the application to the respondent at the address you gave in your application. Once they have received the documents, the respondent will then have 14 days to submit their statement in reply.