Who can apply?

Anyone can apply to have their conviction or sentence referred to an appeal court, if they believe that a miscarriage of justice has occurred.

What conditions does my application have to meet?

We will want to know whether you have exercised your rights of appeal to the court. You are more likely to have your application accepted if you have used all your rights of appeal. We will also consider the extent to which the application relates to new evidence or a question of law, and also the prospects of the appeal succeeding.

How do I apply?

We have an application form that you can complete.  The form is available here, or you or someone acting on your behalf can contact us and arrange for a form to be posted to you. This form has been designed so that it is easy to fill out.  Please try to complete as much of the form as you can, but dont worry if you cant answer everything.  If English is not your main language, please get in touch and we can organise for someone to help you to complete the form.  Our application form is available in te reo Māori, Samoan and Tongan.

If you would like us to help you complete your application, please contact us on 0800 33 77 88 and we can work through the application with you. Alternatively, you may like to ask a family member, friend or someone you trust to help you complete the form.

Once you have completed the form, please send the form and any supporting documents to: New Zealand Criminal Cases Review Commission, PO Box 9168, Hamilton 3240, or email applications@ccrc.nz

Can I apply on behalf of someone else?

You can apply on behalf of a family member, a friend or someone that you are advocating on behalf of.  Once the application is received, we will contact the person who you are applying on behalf of and ask them for their agreement.

If you believe there has been a miscarriage of justice and you dont personally know the person convicted, you are still welcome to contact us.  We can investigate that persons conviction or sentence using our own powers.

Can I get help with my application?

You are welcome to contact us and discuss your intention to apply for a review of your case.  We will answer any questions you have about the application form. We are here to guide you and help you make the right decision.

Dont worry if you cant answer everything in the form.  Just give us as much of the information as you can.

You can complete the form on your own, or you might want to get the help of someone from your family or whānau, or a friend.  Once you have completed the form, please sign it and send it to us so that we can take a look at your application and get back to you.

If you would like our help completing the form, we are happy to do that. Please get in contact with us by emailing applications@ccrc.nz or writing to us at: New Zealand Criminal Cases Review Commission, PO Box 9168, Hamilton 3240.

Do I need a lawyer?

You do not need a lawyer to apply to the CCRC, however you may like to ask a lawyer to assist you in completing the application form as they will be able to help you with your grounds for review.

Can I access legal aid?

You can apply for legal aid to make an application. You can find a legal aid lawyer with the appropriate approval here.  The criminal legal aid application form is available here.

Will it cost me anything to apply?

No, there is nothing to pay to apply to the CCRC.

Can the CCRC make inquiries on its own initiative, and not just respond to applications?

Yes, we can.  We may make initial inquiries into a conviction or sentence if were satisfied that those inquiries are in the public interest.  But well need to notify the person concerned that we are doing this. This power will only be used where necessary and appropriate.

Can I apply to the CCRC again?

Yes, you can. However, if your application doesnt raise any new issues, its unlikely that we will refer your application to the appeal court.

What happens if I havent already appealed to the courts?

Your application is unlikely to be accepted, because our role is to look at potential miscarriages of justice for people who have already lost an appeal.  If you have not appealed in the court where you were convicted and sentenced, you should try and do so.  We will generally tell people who come to us before they have appealed that they need to go back and try to appeal in the normal way.

Our brochure

We have a brochure that can be downloaded as a PDF.  It sets out the key information about the CCRC, including our contact details.