Employees' Area

  • Problems at work
  • Unfair dismissal
  • Representation at meetings
Employers' Area

  • Under performing employees
  • Drafting of Employment agreement
  • Defending claims from employees
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Christchurch Employment Law - Unfair dismissal

Before you call that expensive Barrister, Union, Solicitor or Employment Lawyer, call us. We are very experienced Employment Advocate's with excellent win rates and knowledge about unfair dismissals in Christchurch.

Employers and employees call us first when you are needing legal advice on any employment issue. We provide advice on unfair dismissals, personal grievances and any other employment issue you may be facing.

We are the premier employment advocates Christchurch and NZ, IR Thompson provides employment advice NZ wide without the large costs that big law firms charge. You can count on us to provide speedy resolution to your employment problem without the need to employ an expensive employment lawyer at huge rates. We offer a free consultation to provide advice if you have a case or personal greivance.

We provide employment advice on employment agreements, personal grievances, unfair dismissal's, sexual harassment, bullying, stress at work, restructuring, redundancy, trial periods and disciplinary meetings.

Ask yourself, do you need legal advice on employment law in NZ? What is an unfair dismissal?

We can fix your employment problem or give employment law advice on the below.

  • dismissals
  • redundancies
  • personal grievances
  • employment contracts/employment agreements
  • employers and employees
  • legal aid providers
  • disciplinary meetings
  • harassment

Call us now for your FREE consultation. IR Employment Law offer a first consultation free to review your case.


We have created a Youtube tutorial on matters to help you understand what is needed on certain topics:

90 day trial from 5 May 2019. https://youtu.be/3Y85wTRhNqs 

To learn more about unfair dismissal's and the processhttp://youtu.be/l4mqyXXQusM 

Robert on YouTube on unfair redundancy in New Zealand: youtu.be/-O44rL8HA9s

Robert talks about the rules on the 90 days:youtu.be/JnxN3mxAUc8

Your free consultation will allow you to talk through your problems and receive sound advice from an knowledgeable employment advocate. Call now on (03) 383 9988 or email us your questions. Please note all calls made are recorded for accuracy.

Unfair Dismissal claim

You can be assured of confidential advice from experienced employment advocates. We are specialists in providing employment advice for employers and employees. You will receive honest opinions put in plain language that you will understand.


Times are tough, but an employer can't simply hand a letter to an employee, or text or email them to terminate their employment. An employer must follow a process that is legal and fair. If you have been dismissed because of a redundancy, or if you need to make employees redundant, call us first. Ask for Robert Thompson. Or for a step by step guide on how to make someone redundant click here.   www.iremploymentlaw.co.nz/pages/8/Employers-area.html.

90 DayTrial Periods can still be an unfair dismissal.

A 90 day trial period came into effect on the 1st of March 2009.

As with all legislation, there are key things you need to know before the employment relationship is terminated.

  • Any trial period is voluntary and must be agreed by the employer and the employee in writing as part of the employment agreement, before employment is started.
  • The trial period provision must be stated in the employment agreement and be no more than 90 days.
  • The trial can only apply to new staff - previous employees or those transferring from one job to another can't be included .
  • A trial period can only apply once and can't be rolled over .
  • If dismissed during the trial period, an employee can't pursue a personal grievance for unjustified dismissal but can for a disadvantage claim.
  • The employment agreement must be signed prior to the employment starting.

However, employees can still bring personal grievances for unjustified disadvantage, discrimination, sexual or racial harassment, duress and failure by an employer to comply with the continuity of employment provisions in the Employment Relations Act.

For more information click www.iremploymentlaw.co.nz/pages/10/faqs.htm

Employers Check list before dismissing any employee

  1. Ensure that the employee signed an employment agreement prior to commencement of employment.
  2. Ensure that you have a written employment agreement, signed and providing for the trial period.
  3. Provide the notice period detailed in the trial period clause.
  4. Dismiss the employee before the 90 day period ends.

Employees check list if dismissed on trial period

  1. Ensure that when employed that it is a valid trial period
  2. That the contract contains a trial period for no more than 90 days.
  3. That you have not been let go on grounds that would breach your human rights.
  4. That you did not sign the agreement duringyour employment.

Any questions on the 90 day trial please call Robert Thompson.

Wrongful dismissals (unfair dismissals)

If you have been dismissed you may have recourse against your former employer. An employer must have a fair and valid reason to dismiss an employee. An employer is also required to follow a fair and reasonable process. Prior to a dismissal an investigation must take place. As part of the disciplinary process, an employee must be given prior notice of a meeting where they can give their side of the story.

An employee must receive prior notification of the allegations, possible outcomes and the fact that they are entitled to be represented. Failure to follow this process will be unfair. If you think you have been unfairly dismissal call us today.

Forced resignations (constructive dismissals)

If an employer puts pressure (directly or indirectly) on an employee to resign, or makes the situation at work intolerable for the employee, it may be a forced resignation or "constructive dismissal". A constructive dismissal may be where, for example, one or more of the following occurs:

  • the employer has followed a course of conduct deliberately aimed at coercing the employee to resign
  • the employee is told to choose between resigning or being dismissed
  • there has been a breach of duty by the employer (i.e. a breach of the agreement or of fair and reasonable treatment) such that the employee feels he or she cannot remain in the job.

If an employee has been forced to resign, they may have a personal grievance. We strongly recommend that you contact us before resigning from your employment.

Employment Agreement Drafting & Review

We provide expert advice on employment agreements. For employers, we can draft new agreements or update/modify your agreements. For employees, we strongly recommend getting your employment agreement checked before you sign it. Our prices for checking employment agreements for employees range between $50.00 and $200.00.


Do you have a workplace bully or is your staff complaining about a bully. This type of person is detrimental to your workplace it effects production and much more. Once an employer becomes aware of a bully or harassment they must act. This includes sexual or racial harassment. Call us now and let us fix this problem.

Exit Negotiations

Some times the best way to resolve an employment relationship problem between the employer and employee is to negotiate terms of departure. We can assist you in reaching a final settlement with your employer or employee.

Representation at Disciplinary Meetings

Having an employment lawyer or employment advocate at a disciplinary meeting is vital. It is important to ensure that all rights and obligations are observed, particularly as a personal grievance or further action may result. Representation helps ensure that what you do and say at a disciplinary meeting will be procedurally correct. We will guide you through this process carefully and correctly. We understand that this is a nervous time and will make this process as painless as possible.

Representation at Mediation

Mediation is the primary problem solving mechanism under the Employment Relations Act 2000 to help resolve an employment relationship problem such as a personal grievance. Representation at mediation is critical to helping you make decisions that work for you.

Employment Relations Authority/Employment Court

If mediation does not resolve the issues, a personal grievance can be filed with the Employment Relations Authority which will investigate and make a decision on the matter. Expert advice and representation will give you the best possible result.If you disagree with the Authority's findings you can appeal it to the Employment Court.

Many employment lawyers charge outrageous fees.We are employment advocates, and we do not take a commission, but charge a reasonable hourly rate. We also provide payment options and we are legal aid providers. If you have any questions please call us.

Whlie some of IRT staff are legally trained and have different qualifications we are Employment Advocates and not  Employment Lawyers.  

Count on us!

We are a family run business and promise to deliver prompt and effective advice.
We understand the emotions of employment related problems and the stress you are experiencing. We will guide you through the difficult times... you can count on us.