The Law Society is seeking clarification from the Chief Justice as to the operation of the courts given the impending elevation of the COVID-19 virus alert level to the highest level.
New Zealand courts are to suspend 238 jury trials for nine weeks from Monday due to the Covid-19 coronavirus and the Chief Justice has said that new jury trials will not commence for nine weeks.
The judicial office for senior courts said that included 216 district court jury trials which had firm dates, plus 208 backup trials.
However an application to Justice Jagose to suspend an Auckland jury trial on an application from lawyer Lester Cordwell was rejected by the Judge.
In his decision, the Judge wrote:
“The juror had not travelled overseas recently, or been in known close contact with either any suspected Covid-19 sufferer or their close contacts,” the judge said.
“My initial view was, without fever symptoms, the juror could and should sit. But the Director-General of Health’s Covid-19 guidelines changed later that day, from fever ‘and’ other symptoms to fever ‘or’ other symptoms. On that basis, having at least one of those other symptoms, the juror’s afflicted presence in the jury risked imposing undue pressure on the other jurors, and I stood the juror down.”
Jury Trial Ban
Twenty two high court trials have been suspended in Auckland, the Waikato and Bay of Plenty, Wellington and Christchurch, according to a report from RNZ.
A spokesperson said the suspension period overlapped with the Easter recess, resulting in the need to re-schedule an estimated 59 weeks of High Court trials.
The Law Society tweeted: “The NZBA (New Zealand Bar Association), CBA (Criminal Bar Association), and Law Society have sent a joint communication to the Chief Justice seeking clarity and a further response on court protocols. Updates to come.”
Latest News on LawFuel
- Here Are 8 Kiwi Celebs Who You Never Knew Were Also LawyersThe law, as we know, is not just for lawyers. It […]
- Confusion Reigns Over Euthanasia Law For New ZealandersThe upcoming euthanasia law change referendum has lead to charges that […]
- Chapman Tripp Run COVID Test Case Over Business InterruptionChapman Tripp are running a test case looking at business interruption […]
- Lawyer Accepts Over 70 Breaches of Rules Around DocumentsTreadwell Gordon principal Kirsten Harper Order to pay over $20,000 Manawatu […]
- Market for D&O insurance hardest in living memoryDirectors in New Zealand and Australia are facing the most volatile […]
- Freshfields Joins Slim Ranks of Big Law Firm Female Leaders As Gender Diversity Moves Slowly GrowDan Garner – Female law firm leadership ranks are growing – […]
- Russell McVeagh advises on Scentre Group’s inaugural US$3b subordinated hybrid notes issueRussell McVeagh has acted as part of a multi-jurisdictional team to assist […]
- Anti-money Laundering Startup First AML Raises $8 MillionAUCKLAND, New Zealand, September 16, 2020 – Anti-money laundering tech startup First AML has […]
- DLA Piper Advises Discovery on Acquisition of MediaWorks TVPowered by LawFuel – 17 September 2020 – Global law firm DLA […]
- Labour’s Tax Increases – The Hypocritical FuroreBob Jones What a hypocritical furore following the government’s announcement lifting […]