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Employment legislation – what’s ahead in April 2024

Content updates

The Minimum Wage Order 2024 and the Health and Safety at Work (Adventure Activities) Amendment Regulations 2023 come into force in April and are available now in Westlaw New Zealand.

Minimum Wage Order 2024

The 2024 Order was gazetted on 29 February 2024 and comes into force on 1 April 2024. It revokes and replaces the Minimum Wage Order 2023.

The new Order increases the minimum rates of pay for adult workers, starting-out workers and trainees (each of these terms is defined in cl 3). The new minimum hourly rates will be:

  • $23.15 for adult workers (increased from $22.70 per hour).
  • $18.52 for starting-out workers and trainees (increased from $18.16 per hour).

This reflects the two per cent increase announced by the government in February: see Hon Brooke van Velden (Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety) “Minimum wage set for cautious increase” (press release, 1 February 2024) at <>.

Background papers are available at Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) “Minimum wage reviews” <>, and practical information/guidance can be found at Employment New Zealand “Minimum wage” <>.

For a quick way to access all Minimum Wage Orders dating back to 1990 in Westlaw New Zealand, go to Wages — Related Legislation in Employment Law (online ed, Thomson Reuters) and look under Minimum Wage Orders.


Health and Safety at Work (Adventure Activities) Amendment Regulations 2023

The 2023 Amendment Regulations were gazetted on 10 August 2023 and also come into force on 1 April 2024. They substantially amend the Health and Safety at Work (Adventure Activities) Regulations 2016.

This follows the Whakaari (White Island) eruption in December 2019 and a targeted review by MBIE of the health and safety regulatory regime for adventure activities in 2020, plus a second phase of work in 2021–2023 to further develop proposals for change. See MBIE “Analysis of the adventure activities regime” <> for details.

Practical information/guidance on the pending changes can be found at WorkSafe New Zealand “Changes to the Adventure Activities regime – what they mean for you” <>.

Before 1 April, the many changes by the 2023 Amendment Regulations can be viewed in Westlaw New Zealand as “Future Amendments” within the 2016 Regulations. For a quick way to access them, go to Pending and Proposed Employment Legislation Changes in Employment Law (online ed, Thomson Reuters) and look under April 2024 for a list of/links to the regulations affected.

By Kevin Leary

Kevin Leary is a Senior Legal Editor in the New Zealand Analytical Law team at Thomson Reuters. He has more than 20 years' experience as an editor of bound books, looseleafs, precedents and their digital equivalents.

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