IRB – Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (Author)
News stories in the New Zealand media indicate that a criminal record abroad could affect a person's right to enter and/or remain in New Zealand. A German citizen, Guenther Schier, was deported from New Zealand in March 1999, in large part because he had "concealed a 1980s drug conviction when entering New Zealand" (The Dominion 3 July 1999). A 12 March 1999 news story on the incident quoted a leader of the New Zealand Green Party as stating that if the German government cancelled Mr. Schier's criminal record - which is possible under German law if the ex-convict exhibits 15 years of good behaviour - his chances of being permitted to re-enter New Zealand would improve (The Nelson Mail).
New Zealand's Domestic Violence Act of 1995 contains provisions for the enforcement in New Zealand of protection orders issued abroad, and vice-versa, as indicated below:
Enforcement Of Protection Orders Overseas And Foreign
Enforcement of New Zealand Orders Overseas
96. Enforcement of New Zealand orders overseas - (1) Subject to subsections (2) and (3) of this section, the Secretary may request the appropriate court or authority in a foreign country to make arrangements for the enforcement in that country of a protection order made by a New Zealand Court.
(2) Where a person wishes a request to be transmitted to a foreign country pursuant to subsection (1) of this section, the person must make a request in writing in the first instance to the Registrar of the Court in which the protection order was made.
(3) Where, on receiving a request made pursuant to subsection (2) of this section, the Registrar is satisfied that -
(a) The request is made by or on behalf of a protected person; and
(b) The request relates to a protection order made by a New Zealand Court; and
(c) Orders of that nature may be enforced in the foreign country to which the request relates; and
(d) There are reasonable grounds for believing that enforcement of the order in the foreign country is necessary for the protection of the protected person, -
the Registrar must send the request to the Secretary for transmission to the foreign country in accordance with subsection (1) of this section.
(4) Where, pursuant to this section, a Registrar or the Secretary receives a request for the transmission of a protection order to a foreign country, the Registrar or, as the case requires, the Secretary may require the person by or on whose behalf the request is made to supply to the Registrar or, as the case requires, the Secretary such information or evidence (including certified copies of the order) as may be necessary -
(a) To enable the Registrar to determine whether or not the request satisfies the requirements of subsection (3) of this section; and
(b) To secure enforcement of the order in the foreign country.
(5) Where, in relation to a request made under subsection (2) of this section, a Registrar or the Secretary imposes a requirement pursuant to subsection (4) of this section, the Registrar or, as the case requires, the Secretary may refuse to take any action, or further action, in relation to that request until that requirement is complied with.
(6) Nothing in this section prevents -
(a) A protected person from applying to a court or other appropriate authority in a foreign country for enforcement, in that country, of a protection order; or
(b) The variation or discharge, pursuant to this Act, of a protection order that is enforced in a foreign country.
(7) In this section, the term ``enforcement'' includes registration and enforcement; and ``enforced'' has a corresponding meaning.
Cf. 1968, No. 63, ss. 22L-22LA; 1979, No. 52, s. 2; 1991, No. 19, s. 34
Enforcement of Foreign Protection Orders
97. Registration of foreign protection orders -
(1) A foreign protection order may be registered in a Court in accordance with this section.
(2) Where the Secretary receives -
(a) A certified copy of a foreign protection order; and
(b) A certificate -
(i) That is signed by an officer of a court in the foreign country in which the order was made; and
(ii) That contains a statement that the order is, at the date of the certificate, enforceable in the foreign country; and
(c) Written information tending to show that a person for whose protection the order was made -
(i) Is present in New Zealand; or
(ii) Is proceeding to New Zealand; or
(iii) Is about to proceed to New Zealand, -
the Secretary must send the documents to a Registrar of a Court for the purposes of registration.
(3) The Registrar of the Court must register the foreign protection order by filing a certified copy of the order in the Court.
(4) Where the Registrar of a Court receives the documents described in subsection (2) of this section other than from the Secretary, the Registrar may register the order if he or she is satisfied that the nature of the documents is such that, if they had been transmitted to the Secretary, they would have been sent to the Registrar by the Secretary.
Cf. 1968, No. 63, s. 22A; 1979, No. 52, s. 2
98. Copies of registered foreign protection orders to be sent to Police-Where a foreign protection order is registered pursuant to section 97 of this Act, sections 88 to 90 of this Act apply -
(a) In relation to that order; and
(b) In relation to any variation of that order pursuant to section 99 (c) of this Act, -
as if the foreign protection order were a protection order made under this Act.
99. Effect of registration-Subject to section 101 of this Act, upon registration pursuant to section 97 of this Act, a foreign protection order -
(a) Has effect; and
(b) May be enforced; and
(c) In the terms in which it has effect in New Zealand, may be varied, -
as if it were a protection order made under this Act on the date of registration.
Cf. 1968, No. 63, s. 22B; 1979, No. 52, s. 2
100. Variation of registered foreign protection order -
(1) Where, pursuant to section 99 (c) of this Act, a Court makes an order varying a foreign protection order, the Registrar of the Court -
(a) Must, in the prescribed manner, notify the court or the appropriate authority in the country in which the order was made of the variation; and
(b) Unless the Registrar is the Registrar of the Court in which the foreign protection order is registered, must forward to the Registrar of that Court a copy of the order varying the foreign protection order.
(2) The Registrar of the Court in which the foreign protection order is registered, on receiving notice of the variation of that order, must note the court records accordingly.
Cf. 1968, No. 63, s. 22D; 1979, No. 52, s. 2
101. Registered foreign protection orders not to be enforced in certain circumstances -
(1) Where a Court is satisfied that a foreign protection order -
(a) Was not, at the time of its registration in New Zealand, enforceable in the country in which it was made; or
(b) Has, since its registration in New Zealand, ceased to be enforceable in the country in which it was made, -
the Court must not enforce or vary the order under this Act.
(2) Where the Registrar of the Court in which a foreign protection order is registered is satisfied -
(a) That a New Zealand Court has refused, pursuant to subsection (1) of this section, to enforce or vary the order under this Act; or
(b) That the order is not enforceable in the country in which it was made; or
(c) That registration of the order in New Zealand is no longer necessary, -
the Registrar must cancel the registration of the order and must, in the prescribed manner, notify the court or the appropriate authority in the country in which the order was made of the cancellation.
(3) For the purposes of this section, a foreign protection order is not unenforceable in the country in which it was made solely by reason of the fact that the person to whom the order relates, or any other person affected by the order, is no longer in that country.
Cf. 1968, No. 63, s. 22E; 1979, No. 52, s. 2
102. Evidence taken overseas-Where, pursuant to section 99 of this Act, an application is heard in a Court, the evidence of any person beyond New Zealand may be taken in accordance with the rules of the High Court covering the examination of witnesses beyond New Zealand, and those rules, as far as they are applicable and with all necessary modifications, apply.
Cf. 1968, No. 63, s. 22H; 1979, No. 52, s. 2
103. Proof of documents -
(1) For the purposes of this Part of this Act, -
(a) Any document purporting to be signed by any Judge or officer of a court in any prescribed foreign country is, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, deemed to have been so signed without proof of the signature or judicial or official character of the person appearing to have signed it; and
(b) The officer of a court by whom a document purports to be signed is, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, deemed to have been the proper officer of the court to sign the document.
(2) Any document purporting to be signed, certified, or verified by any of the persons mentioned in subsection (1) of this section is admissible in evidence in proceedings under this Part of this Act if it appears to be relevant to those proceedings.
Cf. 1968, No. 63, s.22I; 1979, No. 52, s. 2
104. Depositions to be evidence - Depositions taken for the purposes of this Part of this Act in a court in any prescribed foreign country may be received in evidence in any proceedings under this Part of this Act.
Cf. 1968, No. 63, s. 22J; 1979, No. 52, s. 2
105. Prescribed foreign countries - (1) The Governor-General may from time to time, by Order in Council, declare any country outside New Zealand to be a prescribed foreign country for the purposes of this Act.
(2) Any Order in Council made under subsection (1) of this section may specify the courts of the foreign country in relation to which the order is to have effect, or may otherwise modify the application of that order to that other country.
(3) Any Order in Council made under subsection (1) of this section may be revoked or varied by a subsequent Order in Council.
Cf. 1968, No. 63, s. 22K; 1979, No. 52, s. 2
106. Evidence of orders made in foreign country - Nothing in this Part of this Act precludes a Court from receiving evidence of an order made in a foreign country (whether or not that country is a prescribed foreign country) with respect to the protection of any person from domestic violence.
Cf. 1968, No. 63, s. 22F; 1979, No. 52, s. 2 (New Zealand 1995)
This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.
The Dominion [Wellington]. 3
July 1999. "Yes We Smoked Dope - But Never Sold It, Says
The Nelson Mail. 12 March 1999.
"Schier May Have Record Expunged." (NEXIS)
New Zealand. 1995. Domestic Violence
[Accessed 15 May 2000]
Additional Sources Consulted
Letters to the New Zealand High
Commission, Ottawa, and the New Zealand Immigration Service,