Terms and conditions published for judicial appointments to senior, employment courts

"Public confidence in our core democratic institutions is strengthened by openness and transparency", the chief justice says

Terms and conditions published for judicial appointments to senior, employment courts

Chief Justice Dame Helen Winkelmann has announced the release of the detailed terms and conditions for judicial appointments to the senior courts and the Employment Court.

“The Attorney General and I see the publication of the terms and conditions as an appropriate step. Public confidence in our core democratic institutions is strengthened by openness and transparency”, Winkelmann said.

She pointed out that judges’ salaries and superannuations were already public information established by the Remuneration Authority “at a level that reflects the required expertise and experience to be appointed as a judge in our courts”.

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 “Publication of the terms and conditions of appointment provides further transparency into the remuneration of judges”, Winkelmann explained.

These terms and conditions are shared to judges upon appointment, encompassing matters like judges’ travel allowances and expenses for circuit travel and official business, relocation expenses, contributions to legal communication expenses, and leave entitlements. Judicial salaries and superannuation entitlements are not included as they are already publicly accessible in the Judicial Officers Salaries and Allowances (2023/2024) Determination 2023 and the Judicial Officers Superannuation Determination 2019.

The terms and conditions for the senior courts – which include the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, and High Court – and the Employment Court have been published on the Courts of New Zealand website. Supporting FAQs have also been provided.

The Attorney-General is currently reviewing terms and conditions for other courts, in collaboration with the judiciary.

The Remuneration Authority sets the salaries and superannuation subsidy requirements for key public office holders like the Governor-General, members of Parliament, and judicial officers. The organisation factored the terms and conditions into its formal review of judicial officer remuneration in 2018-2019, allowing the Remuneration Authority to establish a “fully inclusive total remuneration amount” for each judicial role in service of the review.

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