Meat company Affco is disappointed by ACC's threat of legal action if it doesn't pay a $1 million debt over an employee who was shot while on a work break.
ACC and Affco became involved in a long-running battle after Joel Storey, 23, was left paralysed from the waist down from what appeared to be a gang shooting in the carpark of Affco's Wairoa plant in April 2003.
State-owned workplace insurer ACC said the incident came under the umbrella of a workplace accident and billed the company for $1 million in compensation.
But Affco staunchly opposed the ruling, saying the shooting was beyond any employer responsibility and could not be classified as a workplace accident.
ACC had withdrawn from mediation with Affco because it had become clear a "mutually satisfactory outcome was unlikely", ACC levy and scheme management general manager Dr Keith McLea said yesterday.
The corporation had sent an invoice to Affco demanding payment and if the money was not paid, legal action would follow, Dr McLea said.
But Affco spokesman Richard Griffin said the company's position was simple.
"We continue to claim and maintain this was not a workplace accident and as such we still believe there is room for discussion," he told Radio New Zealand.
"However, if it has to go to court, if it has to be tested in a legal abyss which will go on for a considerable amount of time, so be it."
Dr McLea said Affco had entered an agreement with ACC in 2000 that explicitly stated it would be responsible for any injury occurring on its premises, whether or not it was at fault, he said.
In return Affco paid reduced ACC levies.
"The agreement also allowed for certain high cost claims to be handed back to ACC, with Affco being liable to pay the first $1 million, much like an excess on a common insurance policy."
Are you for or against the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade agreement?Related story: TPP talks fail to reach agreement