Lay Advocates appear in the Youth Court in support of a child or young person who is appearing before the Court charged with an offence. They are not lawyers and are appointed by the Court under the Oranga Tamariki Act 1989. As a statutory appointment, Lay Advocates are not employed by, or contracted to, the Ministry of Justice or the Court. Lay Advocates are independent service providers and are not covered by the Employment Relations Act 2000.
Occasionally, a court may advertise for new Lay Advocates. Lay Advocates can be appointed to be available for one court or across several courts within a region.
This handbook provides information and guidance on all aspects of the Youth Court Lay Advocate role, including: