New Zealand Law Society - Independent Review of the statutory framework for legal services in Aotearoa New Zealand

Independent Review of the statutory framework for legal services in Aotearoa New Zealand

The New Zealand Law Society | Te Kāhui Ture o Aotearoa is seeking feedback on the draft Terms of Reference for the Independent Review of the statutory framework for legal services in Aotearoa New Zealand. The Review will include the structure and functions of the Law Society.

Consultation is now open on the draft Terms of Reference for the Independent Review

Help shape the future of the legal profession by providing feedback on what will be considered in the Independent Review.

The New Zealand Law Society | Te Kāhui Ture o Aotearoa is seeking feedback on the draft Terms of Reference for the Independent Review of the statutory framework for legal services in Aotearoa New Zealand. The Review will include the structure and functions of the Law Society.

Chaired by Whaimutu Dewes, a seven-member steering group is developing the terms of reference for the review.

Why is the Review happening?

The Law Society wants to: 

  • Increase transparency: as the Lawyers and Conveyancers Act 2006 (the Act) limits the Law Society’s ability to be transparent about its complaints process. 
  • Deal with unacceptable behaviour: ensure that the right tools are available to deal with a broad range of unacceptable behaviour including bullying and harassment.  
  • Provide up to date legislation: ensure the Act is fit for purpose as it is over a decade old. 
  • Look to the future: consider what is needed to promote competition and innovation in the legal profession.
  • Strengthen the profession’s commitment to the bi-cultural foundations of Aotearoa New Zealand. 

The Law Society recognises not all options raised through the Independent Review will fall within its control. For example, recommendations for legislative change will need to be agreed by the Minister of Justice. 

This is an ambitious review, with the potential to result in significant change to how legal services are regulated, including the conduct of lawyers, and how the profession is represented.

The Steering Group wants to ensure that it gets the Terms of Reference right. This will determine what issues will be examined and shape the recommendations made by the independent reviewer.

How you can contribute

  1. Comment on the proposed Terms of Reference. Consultation is open from Thursday 8 April to Thursday 20 May 2021
  2. Participate in consultation on the actual review, which will take place later this year.

FAQs

Will my submission be made public?

Answers to the survey on the proposed terms of reference are anonymous.

What happens after the consultation on the proposed Terms of Reference?

Once the Terms of Reference have been finalised they will be published. After a reviewer is appointed, there will be further consultation with a wide range of stakeholders.

Any Questions?

Email independentreview@lawsociety.org.nz

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