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Our process

and what happens when you contact us


Free consultation

When you phone or fill out our form, one of our consultants will assess your case and answer any initial questions you may have about employment law and your situation. If you need further support, they will then assign your case to the employment advocate best suited to help you. Your advocate will then call you within 24 hours (during week days) to discuss your case in depth. They'll talk to you about what options you might have and what they would recommend as the next step.


Giving us authority to act on your behalf

If you decide to proceed you will receive an email with our Terms of Engagement (i.e. our fees) and an Authority to Act form. You can agree to these and accept them online – there is no need to print them or sign them. Giving us Authority to Act means that we can legally speak on your behalf. Once you have given us authority to act on your behalf, we'll get to work trying to resolve your employment issue. 


Getting to work

What we do now depends on both your issue and what you want to achieve. This might involve supporting you in a disciplinary meeting, representing you in a restructure, negotiating an exit package, or agreeing a financial settlement with your employer.  Typically, once we are involved your employer is required to deal directly with us which takes a lot of the stress off your shoulders.


Informal settlement

Most of our cases are settled at this informal stage. This means that both parties come to a confidential agreement that resolves all the issues raised. If there is an agreement, we'll draw up a legally binding document which will be signed by both parties and filed with the Ministry of Business and Innovation and Employment (MBIE). Any money to be paid to you by your employer will usually be received within 7 days.



If it can't be solved informally with your employer, then we may need to file for mediation. Mediation is confidential, neutral and facilitated by an impartial mediator provided by MBIE. We will be with you to present your case and help make sure you can get your side across. Your employer will have their opportunity to reply. The mediator will then try to help both parties to resolve the issue. If this is successful, the mediator will have both parties sign off on a confidential and legally binding agreement.


Employment Relations Authority

If mediation is unsuccessful, or your employer refuses to attend mediation, then we may need to file in the Employment Relations Authority (ERA). The ERA is like an informal court. Before doing anything, we will discuss what will happen and your chances of success. While it can take several months to get a date to take your case to the ERA, the ERA will make a decision about the outcome of your case and what your employer needs to pay you. 

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