Chapter 1

Nature of this Paper

1.9This Issues Paper is designed to present the Commission’s preliminary views. Part 1 of this Paper sets out our general approach, and discusses some of the broader issues.

1.10Within Part 1, Chapter 2 addresses the purpose of a Crown Civil Proceedings Bill and the key change from the current Act in the proposed Bill. Chapter 3 looks at several issues relating to the Crown’s liability in tort law, including whether the Crown should be directly liable for torts, the effect of employee immunity under other Acts, and how liability for the Crown arises for breaches of statutory obligations. Chapter 4 discusses how public law actions, such as administrative law breaches of statutory duty and claims for compensation under NZBORA, relate to the Crown proceedings legislation. Chapter 5 examines whether the Crown should be subject to compulsory enforcement remedies. Chapter 6 explores different aspects of the accountability of the Crown, including practical issues about how the government is accountable, the liability of Crown employees and the liability of ministers. Chapter 7 primarily looks at the issue of public interest immunity in relation to the Crown’s disclosure obligations and raises options for reform. It also raises further issues of non-party discovery and the discovery obligations of different parts of the Crown.

1.11Because of the technical nature of the reforms we have suggested, Part 2 of the Paper includes a draft Bill and commentary to present and explain our proposals. The provision of a draft is not intended to convey the impression that particular issues have been conclusively predetermined, but rather to promote debate and submissions on points of detail, so that the final report can get those details right.

1.12The Commission welcomes submissions on all aspects of the Issues Paper. Once we have considered the submissions, the Commission will prepare its final report, which will be tabled in Parliament.