The District Court at Kaikoura has held its first hearing since the earthquake with 29 people appearing. Court services had been unable to run since it was struck by the 7.8 earthquake on 14 November 2016.
The District Court at Kaikoura is a hearing centre that operates out of the Kaikoura Memorial Hall every five to six weeks. While the Memorial Hall was not damaged in the earthquake, logistical challenges such as road closures and access to court equipment meant it was not possible to hold hearings.
Justice and Courts Minister Amy Adams has welcomed the return of court services in the town.
“Court staff and the judiciary have worked in conjunction with the Police and the lawyers involved in Kaikoura cases to either move court cases or defer appearances until the court could run again,” she says.
“This collaboration at a local level helped ensure that court services still ran smoothly while acknowledging the issues that the Kaikoura population has been facing.
“The return of business as usual services to the Kaikoura District Court is another step towards normality for the town.”
The Wellington High Court building reopened on 1 February 2017. The building received water damage in the earthquake.