Directors/trustees must be aware of the laws that apply to an organisation and make sure all legal requirements are met.
An organisation will have legislation that relates to its structure. For instance a Māori Trust Board will look to the Māori Trust Boards Act 1955 and the Māori Trust Boards Regulations.
There is also a whole range of laws that apply across the operations of organisations. In some instances if they are not followed there can be personal risk for directors and trustees including financial liability, fines and possible imprisonment. Directors/trustees are not expected to be experts, but they are expected to know when to ask for legal advice.
Here are some of the main laws that may apply to Māori organisations:
- Companies Act 1993
- Co-operative Companies Act 1996
- Employment Relations Act 2000
- Financial Reporting Act 1993
- Goods and Services Tax Act 1985
- Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992
- Holidays Act 2003
- Human Rights Act 1993
- Income Tax Act 1994
- Income Tax Act 2004
- Incorporated Societies Act 1908
- Māori Trust Boards Act 1955
- Māori Reserved Land Act 1955
- Partnership Act 1908
- Te Ture Whenua Māori Act 1993 (Māori Land Act 1993)
- Trustee Act 1956
You will find the full text these Acts and a list of legislation in New Zealand at www.legislation.govt.nz.