In article one, the concept of Good Faith was introduced and broadly covered. Put simply, it involves demonstrating a genuine intention to do what is right, fair, and beneficial for the employment relationship. 


Within this article, we take a deep dive into the world of fixed-term employment, and how the concept of Good Faith can be practically applied here. 


What is fixed term employment? 


When an employee works on a fixed-term basis, it means their employment relationship is temporary, not permanent. They are still covered by the Employment Relations Act 2000, and in essence share all the same rights as permanent employees, the only difference being their employment will end on a pre-planned date. 


Where does Good Faith fit in? 

Good faith in fixed-term employment refers to the expectation that both employers and employees will act honestly, transparently, and fairly throughout the duration of a fixed-term contract. This principle is essential to ensure that the rights and interests of both parties are respected and upheld: 


Is it necessary? You can’t just place someone on a fixed-term contract because you feel like it, there must be a genuine business reason, based on reasonable grounds. The employee must be told of this reason, and their fixed-term employment agreement must reflect this too. 



Up front clarity. Employers should clearly communicate the terms and conditions of the fixed-term contract to the employee before they accept the position. This includes details such as the duration of the contract, the nature of the work, compensation, and any specific expectations or requirements. 


Fair & equitable treatment. Employers should treat fixed-term employees fairly and equally compared to permanent employees. This includes providing similar benefits, opportunities for training and advancement, and access to resources necessary to perform their duties effectively. 


Respect the contract. As with any employment relationship, both parties are expected to honour the terms of the fixed-term contract, and fulfil their responsibilities and obligations outlined. If there are any changes or amendments needed to the fixed-term contract during its duration, both parties should engage in good faith negotiations to reach a mutually acceptable solution. 


Communication. Open and honest communication is essential throughout the duration of the fixed-term contract. Employers should provide regular feedback to employees on their performance, and employees should communicate any concerns or issues they may have related to their work or the terms of the contract. As noted, fixed term employees have the same rights as permanent employees. 


Extension or Termination. If there is a possibility of contract extension or termination, employers should communicate this to the employee in advance and provide reasons for the decision. Is the extension indicative that the employee may be better suited as a permanent, or is the reason for fixed-term still genuine? If the contract is coming to an end as planned, employers should provide appropriate notice. 


If you ever feel concerned that you are not being treated in good faith at work, please don’t hesitate to call us for advice!  


Legal Disclaimer: The content posted on the Sacked Kiwis website should not be considered or relied upon as legal advice or opinion. The information presented here is not intended to serve as legal guidance. Over time, laws and regulations evolve, potentially altering the accuracy of previously shared information. Updates in jurisprudence or legislation, which could happen without immediate notice, may render the legal information on this platform outdated. 


Remeber its “Your Job. Your Rights. Our Fight.”


Quiz results! Genuine: 1, 3, 4; Not genuine: 2, 5