Minimum Employment Rights and Obligations

If you're employer and looking to hire new staff, then it’s important you know your employment rights and obligations.

All employees have the same minimum employment rights no matter if they are working full-time, part-time or on a casual basis.

Employers have an obligation to ensure all their employees are receiving at least their minimum employment rights.

Minimum employment rights include:

  • Four weeks' paid annual holidays at the end of each year of employment.
  • One 10 minute paid rest break for every four hours worked plus one unpaid 30 minute meal break when working more than four hours. 
  • A signed employment agreement. 
  • Employees aged 16 years and over must be paid at least the adult minimum wage rate. 

Employers must:

  • Keep an accurate record of an employee’s time worked, payments, and holiday & leave entitlements 
  • Keep a signed copy of the employment agreement 
  • Pay employees their daily pay or average daily pay (if applicable) for public holidays
  • Ensure that the person they’re employing has the legal right to work in New Zealand 

More information

More information about minimum employment rights is available from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s labour website.

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