The office of Justice of the Peace for New Zealand has powers and responsibilities that involve dealing with the private affairs and rights of individuals from all races, creeds and backgrounds and, as such, demands sensitivity, standards of performance in the role, and the maintenance of high standards in the private and working lives of Justices of the Peace.
Code of Ethics
Justices of the Peace shall:
1. carry out their statutory, judicial and ministerial duties in a proper manner and administer the law in so far as they are authorised and called upon to do so, without fear or favour, affection or ill will, in accordance with their Judicial Oath and in the most conscientious manner possible.
2. maintain the integrity and dignity of the office through ethical conduct, good example, high standards of citizenship, and by not acting in a manner which is unlawful or likely to bring disrepute to the office of Justice of the Peace.
3. preserve their Warrant, displaying it only when necessary to establish their bona fides in the performance of their duties as a Justice of the Peace.
4. acknowledge that their authority to act is only as prescribed by law, and that the office confers no other authority, responsibility, or benefit.
5. not claim by virtue of their office of Justice of the Peace any privilege or licence to avoid legal responsibilities.
6. remain true to the Oaths of the Office taken on appointment as a Justice of the Peace.
7. refrain from giving legal advice in their capacity as a Justice of the Peace.
Code of Conduct
Justices of the Peace shall:
1. abide by the constitution and the policies of the Royal Federation of New Zealand Justices’ Associations and of the Association to which each Justice belongs.
2. maintain a working knowledge of the duties, responsibilities and obligations of a Justice of the Peace by regularly participating in ongoing education sessions provided by their Associations or Royal Federation.
3. willingly and courteously manage the duties required at any reasonable time of the day and night.
4. use the office of Justice of the Peace for the purpose of ministerial or judicial duties and not to enhance their personal status.
5. in the carrying out of duties of a Justice of the Peace disclose any interest or relationship likely to affect impartiality or which might create an appearance of partiality or bias, and refrain from participating in such circumstances.
6. maintain a record of activities, provided the information stored is not used in any manner contrary to the Privacy Act.
7. ensure that their availability as a Justice of the Peace is appropriately publicised.
8. not benefit, in cash or kind, for any service as a Justice of the Peace except as may be specifically permitted or authorised by law.
9. cease to act as a Justice of the Peace once they have resigned, been removed or retired from office.
Any breaches of either the Code of Ethics or the Code of Conduct shall be dealt with according to the Royal Federation Policy for Complaints and Discipline, and, where circumstances dictate, in accordance with the provisions of the Justices of Peace Act 1957 section 5 (i).
Associations affiliated to the Royal Federation of New Zealand Justices’ Associations (Inc), shall, as a condition of such affiliation, endeavour to ensure their members’ compliance with this Code, and shall suitably amend their Constitutions to make compliance with these Codes a condition of an individual Justice’s membership of his or her Association.
Royal Federation Policy
Ministry of Justice Best Practice Manual
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