WEATHERTIGHT HOMES TRIBUNAL
Protocol for the COVID-19 Protection Framework

Introduction
The Weathertight Homes Tribunal has put the following additional safety measures in place to reduce the risk of hearing participants being exposed to COVID-19.  These measures will apply to all hearings while the COVID-19 Protection Framework (or “traffic light system”) is in place.

When do these safety measures start?
1. These measures apply in respect of all hearings (including case conferences) on and after 24 January 2022.

Who can attend a hearing in person?
2. To attend a Tribunal hearing in person at levels Red, Orange, or Green of the traffic light system, all parties, support people, witnesses, interpreters and any other person entering a Tribunal hearing room (apart from persons under the age of 12 years and 3 months) will need to have a COVID-19 Vaccination Certificate (My Vaccine Pass) which they will need to email to the case manager when a hearing is set down.

3. A person wishing to attend a Tribunal hearing who has not complied with paragraph 2 will not be permitted to attend in person.  The Tribunal will do its best to facilitate the attendance of an unvaccinated person remotely by video-link over the internet (using Virtual Meeting Room, Microsoft Teams or similar) or telephone.  Any such person must email this information to the case manager when the hearing is set down.

What other safety measures are in place?
4. Everyone who attends the Tribunal in person must comply with the following health and safety requirements (and any other requirements advised by staff at the Court or hearing facility):
* Show a copy of their Vaccine Pass and photo identification (such as a driver’s licence or passport) if required to do at the entrance to the building;
* Scan the QR Code at the entrance to the building, or record details in the register provided at the door;
* Wear a facemask in the building and in the hearing room, unless an exemption applies, or unless the Adjudicator approves its removal in the hearing;
* Maintain a distance of at least 1 metre from others (unless they are a person attending with you).

5. Any concerns about health and safety practices in the Court should be raised with the Court Manager in the first instance.  In the event of community transmission in your area, public health advice will be taken and further measures may be put in place.

Other aspects of the Tribunal’s processes
6.  While the COVID-19 Public Health Response (Protection Framework) Order 2021 is in force, the Tribunal will, as far as is reasonably practicable, operate in its usual manner.

7. There may, in some cases, need to be changes to the way the Tribunal operates, including by conducting hearings entirely by video-link or telephone or by requiring that documents be emailed rather than posted or delivered.

8. Parties affected by any change to the Tribunal’s usual operating procedures will be advised of those changes and provided with information to ensure that they understand how their matter will be handled by the Tribunal.

9. This Protocol applies until revoked or modified by the Tribunal.

D J Plunkett
Chair
24 January 2022

During all COVID-19 Protection Framework settings, the Weathertight Homes Tribunal office will be open for electronic filing. Courier and post deliveries will also be received although our preference is to receive information by email to WHTenquiries@justice.govt.nz.

The contact phone number for the office is 0800 777 757 and we will respond to any voice mail message that is left. Thank you for your co-operation. 

The Weathertight Homes Tribunal provides a speedy, cost-effective resolution process for the owners of leaky homes.

Before filing a claim with the Weathertight Homes Tribunal, an expert from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) must complete a full assessment of the property. MBIE will give the homeowner a written report and tell them if their claim is eligible. The homeowner can then apply to the tribunal for adjudication.

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment(external link)

  • About the tribunal

    The government recognised the difficulties with resolving leaky home claims and set up the Weathertight Homes Tribunal to resolve disputes faster.

  • What you can claim for

    Find out about what can be claimed at the Weathertight Homes Tribunal and legal costs.

  • How to make a claim

    What you need to know to make a claim - including the fee.

  • What happens next

    The process a claim goes through from application to decision.

  • Forms & fee

    Forms for the Weathertight Homes Tribunal and how to pay the fee.

  • Decisions

    Find decisions made by the Weathertight Homes Tribunal.

  • Contact us

    Contact details for the Weathertight Homes Tribunal.