Hearing on the scope of the inquiry and making submissions FAQs

If the information you're looking for isn't on this page, or if you have any other questions, please contact Coronial Services by emailing coronial.response@justice.govt.nz or phoning 0800 88 88 20.

On this page, you'll find answers to some frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the December hearing on the scope of the inquiry and making submissions.

These FAQs cover:

About the hearing

What do I have to do if I want to attend in person or watch the hearing remotely?

If you have registered already to attend in person or watch remotely, you do not need to do anything.

If you have not registered, you can do so here: https://consultations.justice.govt.nz/comms/1a09bc2b/(external link)

You will need to register by 23 December 2021.

Can I watch the hearing online?

Yes, but you must register by 23 December 2021.

Details on how to watch remotely will be made available closer to the hearing date.

Will the hearing be interpreted?

No.

However, if you are attending the hearing in person and you require interpreter assistance to communicate with your lawyer or court staff while at the hearing, we will have interpreters available to assist you. If you think you may need assistance, please indicate this when you fill in the registration form to attend/watch the hearing remotely or by emailing coronial.response@justice.govt.nz

What if I am in a location outside of Christchurch? Will I get funding to attend the hearing?

Details of what funding is available for people to attend the 22-24 February 2022 hearing is currently being worked out. We will let you know as soon as a decision has been made on this.

It is recommended that you register your interest to attend even if this decision depends on the available funding.

Can I bring support people with me?

Yes, but only if there is space available.

How long will the hearing take?

The hearing is expected to take three days and will run according to usual court hours (from 10am to 5pm with breaks in between).

Back to top

Making a submission

Who can make submissions?

Only families of the Shaheed and other interested parties can make submissions. Their lawyer can make submissions on their behalf. 

How do I make a submission in writing?

You can make a written submission addressing the proposed scope of the inquiry set out in the Chief Coroner’s Minute. You can set out your argument about what parts of the Minute you disagree with, and why.

Writing legal submissions can be a complex task and requires legal knowledge including relevant case law. If you have a lawyer, it is recommended that you ask your lawyer to make submissions on your behalf.  

Written submissions should be sent to coronial.response@justice.govt.nz by 4 February 2022.

When are written submissions due?

All written submissions by interested parties must be received by 5:00pm 4 February 2022.

If I make a written submission, do I have to attend the hearing?

No.

Coroner Windley will carefully consider all written submissions received whether you or your lawyer attends the hearing or not.

Do written submissions need to be in a particular format?

If your lawyer is making a written submission for you, the submission will follow a standard legal submission format.

If you are making your own submission, you may provide the submission in a Word or PDF document, or in the body of an email. 

Written submissions should clearly identify the part of the Minute that the submission relates to. For example, does it relate to:

  • the interpretation of the Coroners Act, or the case law;
  • key considerations identified in paragraph 67 of the Minute that guided the Chief Coroner’s approach;
  • the response to a specific issue summarised in Appendix A.

Can I make an oral submission?

Yes. 

We recommend your lawyer does this for you. 

If you do not have a lawyer and want to make an oral submission yourself, please send an email to coronial.response@justice.govt.nz to let Coronial Services know. You will also need to provide a written outline of the submission you wish to make by 4 February 2022.

If I already have a lawyer who is making an oral submission on my behalf, can I also speak at the hearing?

If you have a lawyer acting on your behalf, they will be able to make an oral submission at the hearing. Typically, the interested party themselves would not make an oral submission as well. 

However, if there are particular circumstances, Coroner Windley will consider allowing this. This will be rare. If you wish to do this, you should first discuss this with your lawyer.  

How do I make a submission in person at the hearing if I don’t have a lawyer?

If you do not have a lawyer, you can make an oral submission yourself.  You will also need to provide a written outline of the submission you wish to make by 4 February 2022. 

To prepare for making an oral submission at the hearing, we suggest you:

  • Be clear about why something should be included in the inquiry given what the Chief Coroner has said in the Minute.
  • Write down the main things you want to say. You can read this out at the hearing.
  • Practise what you’re going to say. This helps you make sure it’s clear and logical.

At the hearing, Coroner Windley will let you know when it is your turn to speak. This will likely be after all the lawyers have presented their submissions.

Can I make an oral submission in person without prior notification?

No. 

Will there be a schedule or a time limit for oral submissions?

There will be a schedule of who is presenting at the hearing.  It is important that all those who want to be heard at the hearing have the opportunity to be heard.

Once we know how many parties are making oral submissions, Coroner Windley will consider whether a time limit for each speaker will be necessary.

Oral submissions do not need to cover everything that is set out in written submissions but should cover the main points.

Can people provide pre-recorded oral submissions?

No. 

Can submissions be made in another language?

It is preferable that submissions are made in one of New Zealand’s official languages: te reo Māori, English, or New Zealand Sign Language.

If your written submission is not in English, you must also provide a legally correct translated version in English at the same time.

If you are making an oral submission in any language other than English, you will need to let us know so that we can arrange for an interpreter to be at the hearing. You must also provide a written outline of your submission in English.

Will Coroner Windley announce her decision on the scope before the end of the hearing?

This is unlikely. It is more likely that Coroner Windley will announce a decision sometime after the hearing, after considering all the written submissions and the submissions presented at the hearing.

 

Back to top