Courts remain an essential service throughout all COVID-19 restrictions, but may operate differently. The current COVID-19 Omicron outbreak means some courts and tribunals are experiencing staff shortages. This may impact on court operations through reduced services, and customer counter hours may differ from those published. For more detailed information about a specific court, please call 0800 COURTS (0800 268 787).

For more information for court users, see: Information for all court and tribunal users.

In this section you'll find information about going to court - preparing for court, what to expect and legal aid.

  • Prepare for court

    Find out how to get an interpreter in court, or ask the court to speak in another language, how to file a document, or make an application, at court and how to get a document witnessed or certified.

  • What to expect at court

    When you first arrive at court, you should expect to go through court security. Find out what to expect if you're a witness, supporting someone going to court and what happens inside a court room.

  • Legal aid

    Legal aid is government funding to pay for legal help for people who can't afford a lawyer.

  • Going to court without a lawyer

    You can represent yourself at court, without a lawyer. Find out how to prepare to represent yourself.

  • Court fees for civil & family court cases

    Fees can apply for some applications or stages of a court case.

  • Court hearing schedules

    Most courts have a hearing schedule of what cases are being heard and when. The Family Court and Youth Court are not open to the public.

  • Name of registry in English & te reo Māori

    The District Court Amendment Rules 2021 include changes to the Criminal Procedure Rules 2012 and the District Court Rules 2014, which require the addition of te reo Māori registry names in the header of existing criminal and civil District Court documents.

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