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Welcome to the Sharp Tudhope Lawyers' blog. Here you will find  topical information and advice relating to a wide range of areas of law, written by our legal experts.

IMMIGRATION LAW UPDATE - WHY IT IS HARDER TO GET A WORK VISA

As promised, Immigration New Zealand have introduced a number of new rules under the Essential Skills Work Visa category. These rules came into effect from 28 August 2017. The most striking change is the introduction of salary bands. The bands are set depending the skill level of the job as assessed by the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO). The salary band will determine what kind of Essential Skill Visa will be issued. A role with an ANZSCO skill level of 1, being paid $19.97 per hour or less, will only receive a 1 year visa without the eligibility to support a family visa application or apply for residency. These workers will now need to earn a minimum of $23.49 per hour before they will be eligible to apply for residency.
Written by Michelle Urquhart at 00:00

STAY SHARP AUGUST 2017

With the closure of Baywave TECT Acquatic & Leisure Centre this week for urgent seismic remedial work, Hamish Murray's article on strong rules for weak buildings will interest those involved with commercial buildings. There's also a number of law changes we would like clients to be aware of, including increased reporting requirements around any money that passes through our trust account. Partner, Brooke Courtney tells us about what to consider before letting your "other half" move in and also advises on changes coming to Trust Law.
Written by Janine McTainsh at 00:00

IMPORTANT CHANGES TO COMMERCIAL CONTRACTS - CONTRACT AND COMMERCIAL LAW ACT 2017

The Contract and Commercial Law Act 2017 (“CCL Act”) is set to make some practical changes to a wide range of commercial contracts and will come into force on 1 September 2017. The purpose of the CCL Act is to modernise and consolidate 11 commercial contract statutes into a single piece of legislation under the CCL Act.
Written by Paul Milne at 00:00

SKILLED MIGRANT CATEGORY RULES CHANGE AGAIN

The latest raft of changes in the Government’s reset of the permanent visa categories were announced in April 2017. These changes bring an income threshold for applications under the Skilled Migrant Category for residence. Jobs that are considered skilled must meet the New Zealand median income of $48,859 a year. The other threshold is set at 1.5 times the New Zealand median income of $73,299 for jobs that are not considered to be skilled but are well paid. These new rules will take effect from mid-August 2017.
Written by Michelle Urquhart at 00:00

CONSTRUCTION CONTRACTS UPDATE - STAGE 3

In 2015 an array of amendments was made to the Construction Contracts Act 2002 (CCA), to be implemented in three stages, namely on 1 December 2015, 1 September 2016, and 31 March 2017.
Written by James Hakaria at 00:00

MBIE WILL ENFORCE A MIGRANT EMPLOYMENT BAN ON EMPLOYERS WHO BREACH EMPLOYMENT STANDARDS

From 1 April 2017, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) will enforce stand down periods for employing migrants for any employer who incurs employment standards-related penalties. This new regime is designed to protect migrant workers from exploitation. This group of employees are more vulnerable than domestic workers who enjoy protection from the existing regulations and penalties.
Written by Michelle Urquhart at 00:00

EMPLOYMENT LAW - ADDRESSING THE GENDER PAY GAP

How do you address the gender pay gap? This is the question the Joint Working Group on Pay Equity Principles (the JWG) had to answer when it was established by the government in 2015. This group consists of government, employer and union representatives and was tasked with recommending equal pay principles for government consideration.
Written by Shima Grice at 00:00

ENDURING POWERS OF ATTORNEY - CHANGES ARE COMING

Amended regulations for Enduring Powers of Attorney will come into force on 16 March. The regulations will include new plain language Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA) forms and a plain language explanation of the effects and implications of entering into an EPA.
Written by Jenny Glubb at 00:00

FMCA TRANSITION PERIOD ENDS

As of yesterday, 1 December 2016, the 2 year transition period under the Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013 (“FMCA”) officially came to an end. Now, all offers of financial products (such as shares) must be made under the FMCA and the Securities Act 1978 is put to bed.
Written by Kylie van Heerden at 00:00

CONSTRUCTION CONTRACTS UPDATE

Parliament has identified the need for clarification of the forthcoming retention regime under the Construction Contracts Amendment Act 2015 (“Amendment Act”), and has introduced the Regulatory Systems (Commercial Matters) Amendment Bill (“Bill”), which proposes to change s11A of the Amendment Act.
Written by James Hakaria at 00:00

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