When it goes wrong

For a business owner, the risks can seem endless.  When the rubber hits the road and Health and Safety policies are not in place, Worksafe become’s involved and heavy penalties apply to businesses who have not complied with the minimum expectations set out by the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015. Even worse, the results can be catastrophic to those people and families directly affected.


It is important to ensure your business has an effective Health and Safety Policy which ticks all of the compliance boxes. This will ensure every effort has been made to comply with the legislation and is essential to avoid penalties, litigation and harm to those who work within your organisation.

The Health and Safety at Work Act 2015

New Zealand’s health and safety regime was modelled on the Australian counterpart. There are even references to dingo and snake trapping, buried in our definitions of high-risk sectors![1]

The regime functions like a cascading set of laws, duties, regulations and requirements. These all reference each other, and must be complied with to ensure every effort has been made to make your workplace healthy and safe.  Compliance is not a matter of preparing a few documents and making them accessible to your staff members. The duties are specific, can be complicated, and are required to be properly implemented to avoid heavy punitive fines, and possible court action due to negligence.


Worksafe is a government agency appointed by the Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety. They provide a wealth of information for business owners on their website https://worksafe.govt.nz/.

We’re here to help!

Health and safety law is daunting. The compliance can be tricky even with these technical guides. If you require some guidance or legal direction in formulating your own Health and Safety Policies, or would like your health and safety processes to be reviewed for compliance, we can assist. As my father always said, it’s best to be the fence at the top of the cliff, not the ambulance at the bottom.

[1] https://hsu.caa.govt.nz/assets/Guides/Work-Safe-worker-representation-interpretive-guide.pdf

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