7 Proceedings for which legal aid may be granted: civil matters

(1)

Legal aid may be granted in respect of the following civil matters:

(a)

civil proceedings in the District Court or the Family Court:

(b)

civil proceedings in the High Court, the Court of Appeal, or the Supreme Court:

(c)

appeals to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council in civil proceedings in any case where—

(i)

the applicant has succeeded in the Court of Appeal and is the respondent in the appeal to the Privy Council, if the grant of aid is approved by the Minister; or

(ii)

the Attorney-General certifies that a question of law of exceptional public importance is involved and that the grant of aid is desirable in the public interest:

(d)

proceedings commenced by way of application in the Youth Court under Part 7 of the Oranga Tamariki Act 1989 or in respect of any review of any determination of, or any order made in, the Youth Court in any such proceedings:

(e)

in any case where the Commissioner considers that the case is one that requires legal representation (having regard to the nature of the proceedings and to the applicant’s personal interest) and considers that the applicant would suffer substantial hardship if aid were not granted, proceedings in—

(i)

the Māori Land Court; or

(ii)

the Māori Appellate Court; or

(iii)

the Employment Court; or

(iv)

the Employment Relations Authority; or

(v)

any administrative tribunal or judicial authority (not being a tribunal or an authority in respect of any decision from which an appeal lies to any of the bodies referred to in any of paragraphs (f) to (j)):

(f)

proceedings before the Waitangi Tribunal:

(g)

proceedings before the Social Security Appeal Authority:

(h)

proceedings before the Tenancy Tribunal:

(i)

proceedings before a body established under section 63(1)(a)(i) of the Public and Community Housing Management Act 1992 to hear appeals under section 62 of that Act:

(ia)

proceedings before any body established under the Public and Community Housing Management Act 1992 to hear appeals under sections 132 to 135 of that Act or proceedings before any body established under that Act to hear appeals under sections 183 to 188 of that Act:

(j)

proceedings before the Immigration and Protection Tribunal, as established by the Immigration Act 2009, in respect of appeals against decisions to decline to grant recognition as a refugee or a protected person, or decisions to cease to recognise a person as a refugee or a protected person, as provided in sections 194(1) and 195 of that Act, or against liability for deportation arising under section 162 of that Act:

(k)

the processing, under Part 5 of the Immigration Act 2009, of any claim for recognition as a refugee or a protected person:

(l)

any proceedings before the District Court or High Court following an application made under section 316 or 324 of the Immigration Act 2009:

(m)

any appeal or review proceedings (as defined in section 4 of the Immigration Act 2009) in respect of proceedings or matters to which paragraph (j) or (k) applies:

(n)

any proceedings or application under or in relation to the Immigration Act 1987 for which legal aid could have been granted under any of paragraphs (j), (k), (l), and (m) of section 7(1) of the Legal Services Act 2000 as in force before their repeal by the Immigration Act 2009:

(o)

all applications, submissions, and appeals under the Resource Management Act 1991 or to the Environment Court under any other Act:

(p)

all applications, submissions, and appeals to any Council or body in any case where an appeal in relation to its decision lies to the Environment Court:

(pa)

proceedings before the tribunal under the Canterbury Earthquakes Insurance Tribunal Act 2019:

(q)

proceedings before the tribunal under the Weathertight Homes Resolution Services Act 2006:

(r)

proceedings before a Tribunal under subpart 2 of Part 2 of the Prisoners’ and Victims’ Claims Act 2005 in respect of 1 or more victims’ claims under that subpart.

(2)

To avoid any doubt, subsection (1)(e)(v) applies, without limitation, to the following proceedings:

(a)

an inquest held by a coroner for the purposes of Part 3 of the Coroners Act 2006; and

(b)

a hearing of the New Zealand Parole Board (other than one in a proceeding specified in section 6(c)(i)) that concerns an offender and is a hearing at which a victim may appear as of right or with the Board’s leave.

(3)

Paragraphs (o) and (p) of subsection (1) do not restrict any other paragraph of that subsection.

(3A)

Despite subsection (1), legal aid is only available in proceedings under the Care of Children Act 2004 that are to be heard and determined in the Family Court if—

(a)

a lawyer is acting in the proceedings as permitted by any of the following sections of that Act:

(iv)
(b)

a lawyer is acting in the proceedings as permitted by section 7A(4)(a) or (b)(i) of that Act, but the proceedings are not of a kind specified in subsection (3B); or

(c)

a lawyer is providing legal advice to a party who—

(i)

has indicated at a settlement conference an intention to consent to the making of an order settling 1 or more of the issues in dispute in the proceedings; and

(ii)

has been advised by the Judge to obtain legal advice before that order is made.

(3B)

The kinds of proceedings referred to in subsection (3A)(b) are—

(a)

proceedings commenced by an application that—

(i)

affects the applicant only; or

(ii)

is in respect of a routine matter; or

(iii)

is about a matter that does not affect the interests of any other person; or

(b)

proceedings where every person in respect of whom the order is sought has either died or cannot be found.

(4)

Despite subsection (1), but subject to subsection (5)(e), legal aid is not available in proceedings under Part 4 of the Family Proceedings Act 1980 (which relates to proceedings relating to the status of marriage or civil union) unless the Commissioner is of the opinion—

(a)

that the unusual complexity of the case requires that the applicant be legally represented; or

(b)

that the applicant would suffer substantial hardship if aid were not granted.

(5)

Despite subsection (1), legal aid is not available in any of the following proceedings:

(a)

relator actions:

(b)

election petitions under the Electoral Act 1993:

(c)

petitions for inquiry under the Local Electoral Act 2001:

(d)

proceedings incidental to any proceedings mentioned in any of paragraphs (a) to (c):

(e)

proceedings under section 37 of the Family Proceedings Act 1980 (which relates to the dissolution of marriage or civil union), or appeals in proceedings under that section:

(f)

any appeal to the Immigration and Protection Tribunal against a decision concerning a residence class visa under section 187 of the Immigration Act 2009 (or any appeal to the Residence Appeal Authority under section 18C of the Immigration Act 1987):

(g)

any appeal to the Immigration and Protection Tribunal on humanitarian grounds against liability for deportation by a person liable for deportation under section 154 of the Immigration Act 2009 (or any appeal to the Removal Review Authority under Part 2 of the Immigration Act 1987):

(h)

proceedings before a Commission of Inquiry under the Commissions of Inquiry Act 1908 (other than a Commission of Inquiry established or appointed by or under another enactment but deemed to be a Commission of Inquiry under the Commissions of Inquiry Act 1908).

(6)

Subsections (3A) and (3B) do not apply in respect of any proceedings commenced under the Care of Children Act 2004 before the date of commencement of section 5 of the Care of Children Amendment Act (No 2) 2013.

Compare: 2000 No 42 s 7

Section 7(1)(a): amended, on 1 March 2017, by section 261 of the District Court Act 2016 (2016 No 49).

Section 7(1)(d): amended, on 14 July 2017, by section 149 of the Children, Young Persons, and Their Families (Oranga Tamariki) Legislation Act 2017 (2017 No 31).

Section 7(1)(d): amended, on 1 March 2017, by section 261 of the District Court Act 2016 (2016 No 49).

Section 7(1)(i): amended, on 1 October 2019, by section 33 of the Kāinga Ora–Homes and Communities Act 2019 (2019 No 50).

Section 7(1)(ia): inserted, on 14 April 2014, by section 25 of the Social Housing Reform (Housing Restructuring and Tenancy Matters Amendment) Act 2013 (2013 No 97).

Section 7(1)(ia): amended, on 1 October 2019, by section 33 of the Kāinga Ora–Homes and Communities Act 2019 (2019 No 50).

Section 7(1)(pa): inserted, on 10 June 2019, by section 69 of the Canterbury Earthquakes Insurance Tribunal Act 2019 (2019 No 21).

Section 7(3A): inserted, on 31 March 2014, by section 4(1) of the Legal Services Amendment Act (No 2) 2013 (2013 No 81).

Section 7(3A): amended, on 1 March 2017, by section 261 of the District Court Act 2016 (2016 No 49).

Section 7(3B): inserted, on 31 March 2014, by section 4(1) of the Legal Services Amendment Act (No 2) 2013 (2013 No 81).

Section 7(6): inserted, on 31 March 2014, by section 4(2) of the Legal Services Amendment Act (No 2) 2013 (2013 No 81).