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Disputes Tribunal decisions of interest now online

Hon Chester Borrows
Minister for Courts

18 December 2013 Media Statement
Disputes Tribunal decisions of interest now available on-line

Courts Minister Chester Borrows today welcomed the resumption of the online publication of key Disputes Tribunal decisions.

“My number one goal as Minister for Courts has been to bring our courts and tribunals into the 21st century, and putting Disputes Tribunal decisions back online is another step on that journey,” says Mr Borrows.

“Coming on the back of recent moves to increased use of audio-visual links in court and allow online or email filing for many court papers, we are well on our way towards a court system that is increasingly transparent, accessible, and customer-focused.”

The Disputes Tribunal provides a low cost easily accessible forum for the resolution of disputes with a value of up to $20,000 and deals with over 16,000 applications each year.

While key decisions were published online in 2007, these were not kept up to date, and removed in 2010 following concerns by Tribunal referees that there had been numerous legislative changes that made a number of those decisions out of date.

The decisions span the last four years covering a wide range of types of dispute and legislation. In keeping with the private nature of proceedings before the Tribunal, all of the decisions have had details identifying the participants removed.

“The Disputes Tribunal occupies a very important place in our legal system. It provides a quick, low cost alternative to court action to resolve civil disputes, valued by both business and consumers,” says Mr Borrows.

“Having key decisions available online will give a helpful guide to what the Tribunal may look for in similar cases.”

Decisions for publication are chosen by a panel including the Principal Disputes Referee, will be searchable by key word, and will have both a synopsis and the full decision available.

The decisions can be found at http://www.justice.govt.nz/tribunals/disputes-tribunal/decisions-of-note.


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