I am a Management contractor based in Thailand working for a New Zealand Company. Due to Covid, the company cut all

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Customer: I am a Management contractor based in Thailand working for a New Zealand Company. Due to Covid, the company cut all contractor salaries last year. Initially they cut my Salary by 40, the same as all others, and then they cut my salary by 75%. At the end of the year, I understand that they reinstated every ones salary back to 100%, with exception of me, where they wanted to make my role redundant and made a provision that I could invoice and additional 50% of my salary on my December Invoice. I asked if I could move into sales, and it was agreed "let see what he can do" was the message back. Since January, I have been doing sales and have done quite well, although I have yet to close any deals. My activities have been high and my MD seems please with my progress. They reviewed my performance on Monday this week, and it was decided to let me go at then of this month. My understanding is that the Director had already made up his mind anyway, regardless of my sales related activities and my MD's feedback being positive. I understand that the Director said "He was not hired to do sales" as a reason to now terminate my services. On the face of it, it appears the Director is not make a decision based on my performance in Sales, but simply wants me out and is looking for any reason to cut me. I'd like to understand if there would be a case to be made and if I could claim any additional compensation. I feel singled out and targeted by the Director in Auckland.
JA: The Employment Lawyer can help you determine if you have a case. Before I connect you, is there anything else you'd like the Employment Lawyer to know?
Customer: My contract is structure like and employment contract and included annual leave, sick days etc. A job Description for my Operations Role in SEA was never provided, and when I asked for one, it was not provided, stating that its covered in my contract and they question was raised by the Director's wife who also works at the company, why have Job Description, with out one we have "flexibility". So they have slowly but surely reduced my ability to perform my operations role, put up barriers to communications to others while channeling my communication options to only a few. The Directors wife was to provide a handover of support, and we had weekly calls, however it seems that there was no commitment to provide a handover as I had to ask her questions vs her volunteering information that could position me to succeed in my Operations Role in South East Asia. Essentially I had to ask questions and she's would reply, but not in full and if by not knowing about something, then it would be impossible for me to ask a question.
Answered by Chris The Lawyer in 9 hours 1 year ago
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

HiI am a New Zealand lawyer based in Wellington and will help you with your question today. Please give me a minute to read the question
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

Is your contract based on New Zealand law?
Customer
Hi Chris, The contract was signed with the NZ Entity
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

The reason I asked is because if this contract is under New Zealand law, then you have specific remedies under Employment Contracts Act, Sometimes the contract will say it is subject to New Zealand law

Customer
Sure, the contract does not specifically state that it is subject to NZ Law, however the contract is between me and entity whose name and address in Auckland are on the contract.
Customer
He is a copy of the contract.
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

This is not an employment contract although that is potentially arguable. I would suggest that you tell them you want to claim a personal grievance under New Zealand employment law and let them prove that this is not an employment contract and subject to New Zealand law

Customer
What is the chance of winning a personal grievance and how much do you think I could claim? What would be your fees if I wanted to retain your services?
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

You could start with mediation which is much easier and you can attend by audio visual link to the mediation. These are not usually complicated and it would flush out whether they will settle your claim and accept it is an employment contract. If I was to take instructions, that is off the site and would likely be up to about $2000 for the mediation

Customer
Ok, so if the ruling is that it is considered an employment contract, what kind of claim could I make?
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

Lost income and general damages for the unfair process. The amounts are not high, usually $5 to$10,000
Customer
Do you think if I pursue it it would be worth my while?
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

It’s often worth going to mediation to test the case, and assess the chances from there
Customer
How about timing, I am concerned that if I start the process now while I am still working for them, that it could delay my final salary payment, so I am thinking if I do go down this path, then I'd start after I have finished with them.
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

You have a time period of 90 days after you leave their employment to start the personal grievance process. So you could complete your current situation and then make the claim

Customer
Where do I go to start the process?
Customer
How can I register to initiate remediation / grievance process?
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

You should start with a letter outlining the issues and what you claim. If they don’t respond you can start the mediation online
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

https://www.employment.govt.nz/resolving-problems/steps-to-resolve/mediation/?gclid=Cj0KCQiAyoeCBhCTARIsAOfpKxi3HFTQBaBQcwUZAFlzUsYQd_pOwj0cDoVOkZ3BagtJqFTLl11IZEIaAou8EALw_wcB
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