District Court Rules 2014

1.20 Sign language


Any person permitted by the New Zealand Sign Language Act 2006 to use New Zealand Sign Language in a proceeding (including at the hearing of any interlocutory application, or at a conference), or if the person is a witness, the party intending to call that person, must give the court and all other parties 10 working days’ notice of that person’s intention to do so.


A Judge may at any time make any order that he or she thinks fit in the interests of justice relating to—


providing, with the Registrar’s assistance, a competent interpreter, and ensuring that the interpreter is available; and


the interpretation of the sign language into English or Māori and the interpretation of English or Māori words used in court into sign language; and


the costs of and incidental to any interpretation ordered; and


the method of making and recording the sign language communication.


A failure to give notice as required by subclause (1) does not prevent any permitted person using New Zealand Sign Language, but—


the failure is a relevant consideration in an award of costs; and


the Judge may adjourn the conference, hearing, or trial to enable the Registrar to arrange for a competent interpreter to be available at the adjourned conference, hearing, or trial.


In this rule, competent interpreter means an interpreter who meets the standards of competency specified in regulations made under the New Zealand Sign Language Act 2006, and in the absence of such regulations means a person who the Judge is satisfied is competent to translate from English or Māori (as the case requires) into New Zealand Sign Language and from New Zealand sign language into English or Māori (as the case requires).

Compare: HCR 1.16; SR 2009/257 r 3.10