Update from South Auckland Courts: Level 2 measures from 18 February

From 12.59 pm on 17 February, South Auckland Courts will be transitioning to Level 2 measures that were in place last September in line with the Chief District Court Judge’s Alert Level 2 Protocol.

Below is a brief update of the arrangements planned from 18 February for all our jurisdictions – Civil, Family and Criminal. There are subject to change as a result of any announcements from the Chief Justice or Chief District Court Judge.  While we expect things to look very similar to last September when we were in Level 2, please be prepared for any changes to the arrangements below:

Registrar’s List Court at Manukau – Courtroom 5

Registrar’s List Court will be operating from tomorrow.  The following measures will be put in place to help support safe distancing:

  1. Registrar’s Court will be held in Courtroom 5.
  2. Only 10 people will be permitted in the Registrar’s Court at any given time.  This number includes the Registrar, Prosecutor, Counsel and Defendant.
  3. The Registrar will call 6 matters every half hour.  The Registrar may call more than 6 matters per half hour as long as the number of people in the courtroom does not exceed 10.
  4. The Registrar’s Court matters have been scheduled according to the following structure:
9.00am SessionFirst Appearances (new charges)
10.00am SessionSecond Appearances or any other remands from previous dates
11.45am SessionSecond Appearances or any other remands from previous dates
2.15pm SessionProbation Matters

Jury Trials Scheduled from Tomorrow To Go Ahead

Jury Trials scheduled to start from tomorrow will be called.  Jurors summoned to attend the Manukau Court are being contacted this evening. Jury Courtrooms, the Jury Assembly Area and Jury Deliberating Rooms are currently being set up like they were last August-September to support safe distancing. If you have any questions regarding Jury Trials, please contact Manukau.Jury@justice.govt.nz or Naresh Kandpal.

South Auckland Arrests for Thursday 18 February and Friday 19 February 2021

  • Thursday : All South Auckland arrests matters will be dealt with at Manukau
  • From Friday: Arrests will return to being dealt with at either the Manukau, Papakura or Pukekohe Courts

Civil and Family Court Matters

  • Civil: Disputes and Tenancy Hearings will return to be being held on-site from tomorrow
  • Family Court: Family Court Hearings will be operating according to Level 3 protocols for the remainder of this week.

Counters Open

Public counters will be open at all South Auckland Courts to support the daily sittings and for filing in-person at the court. Please note: safe distancing measures will be in place at the counters to assist with safe distancing.

Restricted Access to the Public Still Applies

Entry to the court will be limited to members of the Judiciary, Ministry of Justice staff, defendants, parties, witnesses, complainants, victims and other stakeholders. Members of the public whose presence is not required at court will not be permitted to enter unless they are granted permission from the presiding Judge.  This includes any whānau support person/s for a defendant, whether in custody or at large/on bail. 

Support People and Whanau

While courts staff will be available at the front entrance to help convey any requests for support people, we highly encourage parties/counsel to email the relevant court as soon as possible to seek permission from the Judge in advance so that approved names of any support people can be provided to Court Security at the front entrance.  This will help to minimise any delays, and help us to manage physical distancing at our front entrances. 

Please note: that while a separate process applies for support people in the Youth Court (see District Court Protocol applying to the Youth Court), parties/counsel are encouraged to contact the court if any support people for youth court matters include any children.

Counsel appearing remotely

Counsel may wish to continue to appear remotely – see attached guidelines which include the VMR details.  However as mentioned in the guidelines, please remember to contact the relevant court notifying us of your intended remote appearance to ensure your appearance runs smoothly

Additional hygiene measures

See the hygiene measures set out in the ‘Hygiene’ section of the Chief District Court Judge’s Alert Level 2 Protocol (on page 2). 

In remaining vigilant during the change to Alert Level 2, South Auckland Courts will continue with the its robust cleaning regime such as:

  1. Restricted Access to the courts will continue under Level (see above)
  2. Temperature readings being taken on entry to the Courts.  Please note: People who have a temperature of 38°, or higher, will continue to be denied entry.
  3. PPE and masks will continue to be available at the Court Security Search Station on entry
  4. Hand sanitisers are available on benches in the courtroom and wall units around the building
  5. Signs to remind those attending court of the need to take personal responsibility for their own health and wellbeing, including washing hands regularly, following good hygiene practices and, if unwell, following Ministry of Health guidance.
  6. Courtroom 12 will be available for lawyers to take instructions in a bigger space. Please ask Court Security which rooms are available to take instructions on the day.

Please note that Judge Moses is the Acting Executive Judge for South Auckland while Judge Malosi is on leave.

Manager Justice Services 
South Auckland Courts & Tribunals Regional Service Delivery

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