Home | Browse Topics | Taonga Māori | Māori land | Summary of the Māori Land Court process

Taonga Māori

The Māori Land Court

Summary of the Māori Land Court process

How will the Māori Land Court deal with my application?

Māori Land Court Rules 2011, Part 4 Te Ture Whenua Māori Act 1993, s 40A

This flowchart summarises the court process when an application has been lodged under Te Ture Whenua Māori Act:

The court process, step by step

Step 1. Lodging an application – You hand in your completed application form, along with supporting documents and the fee, to any Māori Land Court office. The court staff will check the application before they accept it. The court will send you a letter acknowledging that it has received your application.

Step 2. Māori Land Court search – You’ll be assigned a case manager from the court, who will search the court records if necessary and pass on your application to the court for it to give directions on how it will be dealt with. The case manager will then produce a draft submission for the hearing.

Step 3. Notification of the court hearing – You’ll get a letter at least two weeks before your hearing telling you when and where the hearing will be. If you can’t go to the hearing or if you want to change when or where it will be held, you should contact your case manager in writing. The Māori Land Court sits either once a month or once every three months. Details are in the Pānui.

Optional step: Judicial settlement conference – A new option for people to meet with a judge to negotiate a settlement before going to court. Conditions apply – including that it only happens if all parties agree to do it, or if there is only a question of law to decide.

Step 4. Court hearing – The hearing gives you and other interested parties a chance to give evidence to the court so that a decision can be made. The staff at the court will be available to assist you before, during and after your hearing. If the case is complex, it might be adjourned, or paused, while the court takes time to consider your case, and then started again later. For more information about the hearing, see: “The hearing”.

Step 5. Minutes of hearing – Each case is recorded and a transcript is produced. A copy of the minute will be sent to you (the applicant) and other interested parties.

Step 6. Court order – The court draws up a court order, and the order is signed and sealed. You’ll be sent a copy of the order two months after the hearing.

Step 7. Entry and registration of order – The order is entered in Pātaka Whenua (this information was previously held on the Māori Land Information System (MLIS), and Māori Land Online (MLO)). If necessary, the order will be sent to Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) for it to be registered.

For more details about Pātaka Whenua, see: “Key terms and definitions”.

Next Section | The hearing

Did this answer your question?

Māori land

Where to go for more support

Community Law

Your local Community Law Centre can provide you with free initial legal advice.

Find your local Community Law Centre online:

Māori Land Court

See the Māori Land Court website for application forms and information about Māori Land and the court’s role and processes.

Website: www.maorilandcourt.govt.nz
Download application forms online: www.maorilandcourt.govt.nz/our-application-process/come-in-apply-to-the-court/application-forms
Download information booklets online: www.maorilandcourt.govt.nz/about-mlc/publications
View the National Pānui online or subscribe online: www.maorilandcourt.govt.nz/national-panui

Ngāi Tahu Māori Law Centre

The Ngāi Tahu Māori Law Centre assists all Ngāi Tahu and all Māori living within the Ngāi Tahu rohe on Māori land law issues.

Website: www.ngaitahulaw.org.nz
Email: info@ngaitahulaw.org.nz
Phone: 0800 626 745

Pātaka Whenua

Pātaka Whenua is the new online customer portal that replaced Māori Land Online. This customer portal gives you the ability to submit an enquiry, access Māori land information and file a Court application.

Website:  www.customer.service.maorilandcourt.govt.nz
View the user guides on Pātaka Whenua online: www.māorilandcourt.govt.nz/contact-us/pātaka-whenua-our-new-online-portal

In the future you will be able to search for documents including Minutes and Orders. Until this is available online, you can access this information by emailing mlctewaharoa@justice.govt.nz or visiting your local Māori Land Court office.

Te Tumu Paeroa: Office of the Māori Trustee

Te Tumu Paeroa provide professional trustee services where the Māori Trustee has been appointed a role on a Māori Land Trust.

Website: www.tetumupaeroa.co.nz
Email: contact@tetumupaeroa.co.nz
Phone: 0800 943 682

Inland Revenue Department, Kaitakawaenga Māori service

Kaitakawaenga Māori provides support to any Māori individual or business wanting tax information, advice or training.

Website: www.ird.govt.nz/contactus/kaitakawaenga-maori

Also available as a book

The Community Law Manual

The Manual contains over 1000 pages of easy-to-read legal info and comprehensive answers to common legal questions. From ACC to family law, health & disability, jobs, benefits & flats, Tāonga Māori, immigration and refugee law and much more, the Manual covers just about every area of community and personal life.

Buy The Community Law Manual

Help the manual

We’re a small team that relies on the generosity of all our supporters. You can make a one-off donation or become a supporter by sponsoring the Manual for a community organisation near you. Every contribution helps us to continue updating and improving our legal information, year after year.

Donate Become a Supporter

Find the Answer to your Legal Question

back to top