Exclusive: Leaked email reveals Maggie Barry told parliamentary staff to do National Party work which could be unlawful

Maggie Barry is defending her conduct and the way she treats staff, and denying all claims of bullying.

She says allegations her parliamentary staff unlawfully did work for the National Party are untrue, but Newshub has seen an email that seems to indicate otherwise.

Ms Barry says she has no regrets from her time in Parliament.

"I feel I have conducted myself well," she told Newshub.

That's despite Parliamentary Services receiving two formal complaints about bullying, with a third anonymous staffer telling Newshub Ms Barry's office was "toxic".

The two formal complaints were investigated and no evidence of harassment or bullying was found.

A former staff member alleges Ms Barry's staff were "terrified" of her, and that she "belittled" their work. Ms Barry told Newshub she denies all the allegations.

"I disagree entirely. I am not toxic."

An email to National MPs was leaked to media on Tuesday, giving the caucus talking points on bullying, including: "Parliament's a robust environment and it's demanding."

Ms Barry was also accused of using Parliament staff for party work, a claim she staunchly refutes.

"I never ask parliamentary staff to do party work. I've been a Member of Parliament for more than seven years, and I definitely understand the distinction."

However Newshub has seen an email from Ms Barry instructing a ministerial staff member to work on a letter to National Party members. The email was sent during a work day to a parliamentary email address.

National refused to discuss the email without a seeing a copy of it. Newshub had agreed with its source not to share the email.

Electoral lawyer Andrew Geddis says it appears to be a breach.

"When you have an email like this sent during work time, it looks very much like they are being asked to do it on the taxpayer dollar - and that's what they are not allowed to do."

But Ms Barry stands by her denials, and says it's hard dealing with anonymous claims.