This page has links to information that may be useful if you are going to court, planning to file proceedings in the District Court, or looking for information about other courts in New Zealand. There is also information for those wanting to make a complaint about a District Court judge, and for those interested in seeking judicial appointment.
On this page:
If you are seeking independent legal advice
The New Zealand Law Society website provides a list of practicing lawyers:
Get legal help(external link)
Community Law Centres provide free legal help to those who may not be able to afford a lawyer:
Community Law(external link)
Citizens Advice Bureaus provide free and confidential information, advice, and support on a range of issues. They can be contacted over the phone, via email or online chat, or in person at 85 locations throughout New Zealand:
Citizens Advice Bureau(external link)
Legal aid is administered by the Ministry of Justice, and provides financial assistance to those who can’t afford to conduct court proceedings:
Legal aid(external link)
If you are looking for information about other courts and their decisions
The Courts of New Zealand website provides information on the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, and High Court (collectively known as the 'senior' courts). This includes information on senior court judges and decisions of high public interest.
Courts of New Zealand(external link)
Judicial Decisions Online is the official database of senior court decisions (Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, and High Court) that are publicly available:
Judicial Decisions Online(external link)
The New Zealand Legal Information Institute (NZLII) website provides access to an independent database of judicial decisions and articles from New Zealand courts and tribunals. This includes ACC appeal judgments of the District Court.
New Zealand Legal Information Institute(external link)
Other courts and tribunals also have their own websites, including the:
If you want to complain about the conduct of a District Court Judge
Complaints about a judge’s conduct should be made to the Office of the Judicial Conduct Commissioner:
Office of the Judicial Conduct Commissioner(external link)
Note: The Commissioner will only consider complaints related to a judge’s conduct. If you are unhappy about the substantive content of a judge’s decision, you may wish to consider your rights of appeal.
If you intend to file District Court proceedings
District Court proceedings must be filed in a court registry before they are received by a judge. See the Find us page of the Ministry of Justice website for court addresses:
Find us(external link)
Information about how to file Family Court proceedings can be found on the Ministry of Justice’s family justice website.
File and serve your Family Court documents(external link)
If you're looking for information on the family or youth justice systems
The Youth Court has its own website which provides information for children and young people, families, and victims:
Youth Court of New Zealand | Te Kōti Taiohi o Aotearoa(external link)
The Ministry of Justice’s family justice website provides detailed information about New Zealand’s family justice system:
Family section of the Ministry of Justice website(external link)