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Changes for the Benefit of Employees

Shelley Yeates
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The government has announced various upcoming changes which are for the benefit of employees.  However businesses will also be affected by these changes as well because it’s the employer that will bear the cost.  You will need to keep these changes in mind for any budgeting or planning you are doing for the years ahead.  The three main changes are as follows:

  1. Minimum Wage Increase

From 1 April 2021 the minimum wage rates are increasing.  The new rates will be:

  • The adult minimum wage will go up from $18.90 to $20.00 per hour,
  • The starting-out and training minimum wages will go up from $15.12 to $16.00 per hour.


  1. Matariki Public Holiday

The government will introduce legislation later in the year to amend the Holidays Act, to bring in Matariki as a new public holiday.  This will mean that New Zealand will have 12 public holidays. 

The change will not take effect until the 2022 year and the first Matariki public holiday will be Friday the 24th of June 2022.  The timing of the holiday will change from year to year, but it is always expected to fall on a Monday or a Friday.


  1. Minimum Sick Leave Entitlement Proposed to Increase from 2021

The government has introduced an amendment Bill to increase the minimum employee sick leave entitlement from 5 days per year to 10 days per year.  The Bill will come into effect 2 months after it’s passed as law.

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