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Disciplinary Tribunal notes media confusion

15 March 2017

The New Zealand Lawyers and Conveyancers Disciplinary Tribunal says its independent nature and role can be confused when the news media refers to it as the "Law Society Disciplinary Tribunal" or similar.

The Annual Report of the Tribunal for the year to 30 June 2017 has been tabled in Parliament.

"There could perhaps be greater recognition by the media that we operate as a separate judicial body outside the regulatory organisations we oversee. That separation enhances public confidence in the disciplinary regime applicable to lawyers and conveyancers," it says.

The Tribunal says 23 new cases were filed with it during the year to 30 June 2016. During the year it disposed of 28 cases, leaving 21 cases on hand at 30 June 2016.

It says it has been able to maintain disposal rates ahead of new filing rates for the past two years.

Cases filed and cases disposed in Tribunal
Year to 30 JuneNewDisposed
20162328
20153656
20145135
20133933
20123026
20111920
20102823

The Tribunal issued 42 decisions over the 2015/16 year.

Penalty orders made by Tribunal, year to 30 June 2016
Type of OrderNumber
Struck off the roll1
Suspension from practice6
Censure18
Pay fine10
Pay compensation4
Pay costs to New Zealand Law Society24
Pay costs to Legal Complaints Review Officer1
Reduce fees and/or refund monies1
Restriction on employment1
Supervision/mentoring/advice to be taken3


The Tribunal says it made section 257 orders over the year for the New Zealand Law Society to reimburse the Crown for hearing costs in the sum of $153,283.

Last updated on the 16th September 2019