High Court Rules 2016

1.16 Sign language


Any person permitted by the New Zealand Sign Language Act 2006 to use New Zealand Sign Language in a proceeding or at the hearing of any interlocutory application or at a case management or pre-trial conference 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, on application by or on behalf of a party, make any order thought just 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 cost of any interpretation ordered and its incidence; 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, however—


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


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