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Court cases suffer delays with judges under strain

RNZ 15 May, 2018

A law change last year which reduced the number of district court judges has resulted in an "avalanche of work" and lengthy delays in the court system. Since the beginning of last year 15 district court judges have retired, one has gone to work for the New Zealand High Court and two have died in office. Meanwhile another 18 judges have indicated they will retire or due to retire by the end of next year (they have to when they turn 70).

The number of district court judges was capped at 160 and a new law brought in last year meant lawyers could no longer be recruited on temporary warrants to fill gaps. Only retired judges under the age of 75 were allowed to do those jobs.

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