Supreme Court of New Zealand

The Supreme Court of New Zealand (Māori: Te Kōti Mana Nui, lit.'Court of Great Mana') is the highest court and the court of last resort of New Zealand. It formally came into being on 1 January 2004 and sat for the first time on 1 July 2004. It replaced the right of appeal to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, based in London. It was created with the passing of the Supreme Court Act 2003, on 15 October 2003. At the time, the creation of the Supreme Court and the abolition of appeals to the Privy Council were controversial constitutional changes in New Zealand. The Act was repealed on 1 March 2017 and superseded by the Senior Courts Act 2016.

Supreme Court of New Zealand
Te Kōti Mana Nui (Māori)
Entrance to Supreme Court building in Wellington
Established1 January 2004
Location85 Lambton Quay, Wellington
Composition methodAppointed by the Governor-General on behalf of Queen Elizabeth II on the advice of the Prime Minister (Chief Justice) and Attorney-General (Justices)
Authorized bySenior Courts Act 2016
Judge term lengthRetire at age of 70 years (Senior Courts Act 2016, s 133)
Number of positions6
Chief Justice
CurrentlyThe Rt Hon. Dame Helen Winkelmann, GNZM
Since14 March 2019

It should not be confused with New Zealand's "old" Supreme Court, which was a superior court that was established in 1841 and continued in 1980 as the High Court of New Zealand. The name was changed in anticipation of the eventual creation of a final court of appeal for New Zealand that would be called the "Supreme Court".