If you are not represented by a lawyer or advocate

Talk with a lawyer or an employment law advocate before starting or defending proceedings. If you can’t afford a lawyer you may be able to get legal aid (external link) .

You can also find free community legal help (external link)

It is often a good idea to talk to the other party or their representative about the issues before starting or defending a proceeding, or during a proceeding.  This may enable you to settle your case or at least minimise the issues for decision.

Please be aware that registry staff will be able to provide basic information but cannot give you legal advice.

If unrepresented you need to observe the rules relating to the procedure in the same way as lawyers or advocates. You will need to do your own research of the legislation and regulations. The time limits prescribed in legislation and regulations and any time limits ordered by a judge should be strictly complied with.

If you want to know more about your employment rights or have an employment relationship problem you can phone the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment on 0800 20 90 20.

If you don’t have a lawyer or employment law advocate, the process of the Employment Court can be very complicated. 

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