COVID-19: Our firm’s position

Last updated: 5pm on Sunday, 22 March 2020

As with all businesses, MinterEllisonRuddWatts is responding to the COVID-19 pandemic that continues to unfold.

We are prioritising the health and safety of our clients, staff and suppliers, and we are carefully monitoring and adhering to the Ministry of Health’s advice – and will continue to do so as this situation evolves.

As requested by the New Zealand Government on Saturday 21 March, our firm has advanced its Business Continuity Plan to the next phase. This means we will close our premises and begin working remotely from Monday 23 March to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

We are here to support you

While we are working remotely, we remain available and committed to supporting our clients. We are always available to speak to you and will continue to deliver excellent service.

Our business continuity plan has been tested and our staff can all work remotely. We are taking additional precautionary measures to ensure that we look after our staff, clients and suppliers – as well as the wider community.

If you have any questions about business continuity or availability of partners and lawyers during this period, please get in touch with your MinterEllisonRuddWatts contact by phone or email.

While this is a challenging time, together we will best protect the safety and wellbeing of all our people.

We have suspended all business related air travel unless approved by the Chief Executive. We are also strongly discouraging any personal air travel in the near future, and will enforce mandatory self-isolation measures in line with Ministry of Health guidelines.

Meetings or events at our offices

Our offices are now closed, except for essential staff. All meetings and events will be rescheduled using technology (for example, webinars, video and teleconferences).

If an in-person meeting is required, and with prior approval, we are asking people attending our offices whether they have travelled overseas in the past 14 days to those high risk countries as set out by the Ministry of Health or have returned home from anywhere overseas since 1am on Monday, 16 March 2020 or have been in direct contact with anyone who has travelled to those countries. If they have, we require that they do not attend or alternatively join by video conference.

We are taking a variety of other measures to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our staff, clients and suppliers at our offices, including contact tracing and additional cleaning and hygiene measures.

MinterEllisonRuddWatts secondees

For clients who have MinterEllisonRuddWatts secondees these people are subject to our firm’s guidelines and measures, as well as our client’s policies. The MinterEllisonRuddWatts supervisor responsible for these lawyers is ensuring secondees adhere to our firm’s measures and guidelines.

It is also important that they are aware of the COVID-19 measures in our client’s workplace. The secondees MinterEllisonRuddWatts supervisor will contact you to ensure there are no potential issues, to minimise any unnecessary confusion or disruption, and to quickly take the appropriate action if required.

Ongoing safety focus

We are continuing to monitor the COVID-19 situation closely and will provide updates as appropriate. Our firm’s approach is to manage the situation in a balanced, calm and measured way, and act swiftly and communicate clearly when required.

We ask that our clients confirm any requirements in place for their organisation, including notifying us if you have a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19. We are keen to work together to ensure the safety and wellbeing of the people in our respective organisations.

Please contact our firm’s Chief Executive, Andrew Poole if you have any questions or your usual contact at MinterEllisonRuddWatts if we can assist in any way.

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