Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

New court legislation may have unintended consequences

New legislation to modernise courts may have unintended consequences


The Judicature Modernisation Bill may unintentionally compromise the public interest in the effective and expeditious disposal of litigation, the New Zealand Law Society says.

Law Society spokesperson Liesle Theron told Parliament’s Justice and Electoral Committee that clause 169 of the proposed bill, which would allow people other than a barrister or solicitor to support self-represented litigants, may undermine the safeguards put in place by the Lawyers and Conveyancers Act 2006 in relation to appearing in court as an advocate for another person.

The Law Society recommends that clause 169 be amended to specify that any person supporting a self-represented litigant does not have the right to be heard.

“The involvement of additional unregulated participants would increase the burden on the court system from unrepresented litigants,” Ms Theron says.

The Law Society suggested a number of technical changes to the bill. It also supported the Law Commission’s call for more transparent criteria for the appointment of judges.

The Law Society supports Commission recommendations requiring consultation with the legal profession and the judiciary before making judicial appointments and specifying appropriate minimum criteria for selection but without identifying specific categories of diversity.

“Stating these basic requirements explicitly would engender public confidence and transparency,” Ms Theron says.

The bill also proposes expanding the power of individual judges in the Court of Appeal, allowing two judges to determine applications for leave to appeal and to extend time.

At present, at least three judges are required to decide a matter that will determine an appeal.

The Law Society says if the judges disagree, the applicant will be denied relief. This means that one judge effectively determines the application against the applicant if there is a disagreement.

The Law Society recommends that any application which determines the proceeding or disposes of a question or an issue that is before the court in the proceeding should be heard and determined by at least two judges.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice.

Evidently, the National government is similarly desperate for anything that might discredit or derail the Ardern juggernaut, even if that means throwing Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne under a bus More>>

 

Rail: Greens Back Tauranga – Hamilton – Auckland Service

The Green Party today announced that it will trial a passenger rail service between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga starting in 2019, when it is in government. More>>

ALSO:

Housing: Voluntary Rental Warrant Of Fitness For Wellington

Wellington City Council is partnering with the University of Otago, Wellington, to launch a voluntary Rental Warrant of Fitness for minimum housing standards in Wellington, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>

ALSO:

Treaty: Agreement In Principle Signed With Moriori

“The Crown acknowledges Moriori was left virtually landless from 1870, hindering its cultural, social and economic development. The Crown also acknowledges its contribution to the myths that the people of Moriori were racially inferior and became extinct." More>>

ALSO:

Susan Devoy: Call For Inquiry Into State Abuse Reaches UN

Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy is in Geneva and has asked a United Nations committee to urge the New Zealand government to initiate an inquiry into the physical and sexual abuse of children and disabled people held in state institutions. More>>

ALSO:

(Not National): Cross-Party Agreement On Pike River Re-Entry

The commitment was signed this afternoon by the leaders of Labour, United Future, The Maori Party, and the Green Party and, together with the earlier commitment by New Zealand First, means that there is now a Parliamentary majority behind the families’ fight for truth and justice. More>>

ALSO:

Earlier:

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election