Public Holiday Pay: Know Your Rights and Obligations

With Easter this weekend, followed closely by Anzac Day, we thought it timely to remind everyone of the rules for public holiday pay...

While most businesses will close for the day, with staff receiving full pay, this is not always an option. If you need to operate with staff over the break, know that an employee can only be made to work on a public holiday if it falls on a day they would usually work and their employment agreement states they must. Everyone else has the right to a day off.

If employees work on a public holiday, they must be paid time and a half for the hours worked and will likely be entitled to an alternative paid day off as well. The alternative day off does not apply if

  • The employee would not usually have been working the public holiday.
  • The employee was on call where they didn’t have to restrict their activities.
  • The employee was employed only to work on the public holiday.

Another option, if both parties agree, is that the public holiday can be shifted to another day.

Visit Employment NZ here for further information.


The Rural Accountants Team would like to wish you a very happy Easter.

Our current office opening hours are 8am-4pm.  We will be closed over the Easter and Anzac breaks.


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Great local Accountants. They provide an excellent service with great explanations for the layman. They provide accounting services for non rural clients too.

Quinn Wilson, Restaurant Owner, The Wagon
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Rural Accountants is a real asset to our business.

The team at Rural Accountants pretty much manage all our administrative tasks for the group including payroll and tax planning, ensuring we don’t pay any more than necessary. They are at the forefront of technology and have helped us get up and running with Xero and Figured which is much more efficient than the way we used to work.

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Christine is very knowledgeable, great to deal with and knows our business well. She is also a sheep & beef farmer so knows the industry really well and understands our needs.

Rural Accountants keeps us on track through strategic and forward planning meetings throughout the year. Christine knows our business inside out so she can deal with our questions instantly.

Mathew & Gemma Barham, Hawke’s Bay Farmer of the Year 2012
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I used to work out my GST and process it manually which would take me at least a full day every two months. The team set up reconcilliation rules and other quick tools, and showed me how to do all my reconcilliations and process my GST returns through Xero which now takes me no time at all!

Mike O'Neill, Financial Services Northland Ltd
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We use Rural Accountants to provide a full accounting service to an orcharding partnership which operates a number of orchards with a wide spread of varieties and management systems. Rural Accountants are always timely and accurate, and their annual financial accounts are extremely easy to understand and very grower-friendly.

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