RECENT SIGNATURES on a trans-Tasman treaty may see businesses and individuals involved in civil legal cases across the Tasman benefit from reforms making the cross-border legal process more efficient.
The Trans-Tasman Court Proceedings and Regulatory Enforcement treaty will see further co-operation between Australia and New Zealand in civil court proceedings.
Signed by Australian Attorney-General Robert McClelland and New Zealand Associate Justice Minister Lianne Dalziel in Christchurch, the ministers said the reform will allow trans-Tasman disputes to be resolved more effectively and at a lower cost.
Once brought into force, the ministers said, the treaty will improve the effectiveness of civil court proceedings in both countries. Notably, the range of court judgements that can be enforced across the Tasman is expected to be expanded.
Meanwhile, each country’s regulatory rules may also be affected under the reforms. The new arrangements will see fines deemed to be of mutual interest — such as securities offerings made to the public — enforceable across the Tasman.
Both governments will be subject under the treaty to parliamentary examination processes before the legislation is expected to be introduced by late 2009.