Health & Safety Changes April 2016
March 29, 2016 at 12:43 PM
The below message was emailed to our owners. We are sharing it here as its hugely valuable and many people are still unclear about the changes to Health & Safety legislation and how it affects them. As every situation is different we encourage you to seek legal advice on your own personal needs.
The past quarter has involved much legislative change. First with the smoke alarms and insulation standards, and now with the Health & Safety amendments due to take affect on Monday 4th April. We have compiled the below information for you regarding the changes and ask that you please take a moment to understand how these changes affect you as a Landlord in New Zealand.
Important Health & Safety Changes. What you need to know.
The Health and Safety at Work Act (HSW Act) comes into effect on 4 April 2016. The aim of the Act is to reduce New Zealand’s workplace injury and death toll by 25 per cent by 2020. The Acts key emphasis is on everyone in the workplace being responsible for health and safety.
What does this mean?
The new legislation shifts the focus from monitoring and recording health & safety incidents to proactively identifying and managing risks so everyone is safe. All business owners need to be able to produce the relevant documentation to demonstrate the health and safety practices are performed in their workplace. Property Owners are considered business owners under the act and have responsibilities that must be meet.
What do I have to do?
We have done the research for you and working closely with legal and health & safety consultants have a short list of what you need to know as a property owner.
A property owner renting their property to a tenant is defined as a PCBU (person conducting a business or undertaking). This is true no matter how you hold your property, be it a company, partnership, in your name or trust and means you must comply with the act.
If there is a maintenance item that could be deemed a Health & Safety risk, Wendell Property Management has a responsibility to report this to you and also to follow up if you have not taken action. As a property owner you have a responsibility to act on the maintenance item in a reasonable timeframe.
There is confusion surrounding meth testing during and between tenancies. We have received phone calls from concerned owners who have said they have heard that this is now a requirement of the new health and safety changes. This is not the case under the new act. We believe it is best practice to meth-manage your property but you are not obliged to do so under the act.
Tradesman that work at your property must also comply with the new Health and Safety Act. If you are arranging your own tradespeople, it is your responsibility to ensure that they are Health & Safety compliant.
Wendell Property Management in Auckland has taken significant measures to review our own policies and proceedures to ensure we are meeting our Health & Safety obligations under the act.
For further information, please contact Natalie on firstname.lastname@example.org.