Helen White has been involved as counsel in a number of significant cases and appears regularly in the Employment Relations Authority and the Employment Court.

She has experience advising on a wide range of employment law issues for both employees and employers, including representation of many unions.

Recent experience includes reinstatement of the Harlem Shakers; successful appeal on contractual interpretation case; acting as intervener on case about vulnerable workers classification.

Helen White offers sound advice that is both legally compliant and pragmatic.

Experience with:

  • Personal Grievances
  • Contract Compliance
  • Contract Negotiations
  • Contract Dispute and interpretation
  • Redundancy procedures
  • Actions over confidential information
  • Facilitation
  • Breaches of Privacy and Human Rights Act
  • Compliance with Health and Safety in Employment Act
  • Advice and representation during performance management
  • Experience dealing with collective issues
  • Objective legal advice
  • Integrated approach utilising media and recognising industrial action is a legitimate problem solving tool
  • Negotiation skills
  • Mediation skills

Phone:    64 9 379 9787
Fax:   64 9 379 9791
Mobile:   027 591 0036
Office:   2-8 Chancery Street, Auckland City
Postal address:   PO Box 106-305, Auckland City 1143

For employees:

Employees need practical advice given their often limited financial resources and the reality of the power relationship between most employers and employees. When an employee has a problem in an ongoing employment relationship it is very important it is handled with sensitivity in a way that addresses the problem rather than making it worse.

I offer practical help with disciplinary processes, performance management, graceful exits, contract compliance, wage claims and redundancy processes.

For unions:

Successfully dealing with many of the issues that confront unions requires an understanding of the nature and objectives of the organisation. It is vital if litigation and seeking compliance through legal enforcement is to play a constructive part in industrial relations that legal counsel understands collective bargaining, the democratic structure of unions and the role of the organiser, delegate and member.

For employers:

Helen White also represents large and small employers, advising on restructures, performance management personal grievances and compliance issues, such as updating employment agreements and complying with health and safety issues.

Helen White brings an appreciation that even for the employer with the best of intentions the law is daunting.

Growing employers often experience particular difficulty as they move to a size where the employer must adopt a less personal and more systematic approach. Helen White can provide support by providing employment agreements appropriate to the particular workplace and position and compliance when using fixed term agreements or contractors.

Even with the best systems in place employers face difficulties when employees don't get on or the economy causes retrenchment.

University of Auckland, LLB (Hons), BA (History major)

Practiced as a specialist in employment law barrister since 2006.

Employment Relations Authority cases:
Sushi Hi
Bus driver unpaid suspension and dismissal
Dismissal - breach of Health and Safety
Harlem Shaker
Misrepresentation and s103A case
Statutory Interpretation case

Articles and speeches:
Employers finding ways around job law (NZ Herald article)
Contracting – good for business and/or employees? (Public seminar presentation)

Prior employment:
Engineering Printing and Manufacturing Union Inc including appearing and advising in drug testing test case, and successful opposition to Air New Zealand proposals to contract out maintenance, cleaning and front of house at Air NZ.
Gubb & Co
Union Law Centre
Ellis Gould

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