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Reform of the Law

The Law Commission is an independent, publicly funded, central advisory body established by statute to undertake the systematic review, reform and development of the law of New Zealand. Its purpose is to help achieve law that is just, principled, and

accessible, and that reflects the heritage and aspirations of the

peoples of New Zealand.

The Commissioners are:

The Honourable Justice Baragwanath – President

Judge Margaret Lee

DF Dugdale

Denese Henare onzm

Timothy Brewer ed

Paul Heath qc

The office of the Law Commission is at 89 The Terrace, Wellington

Postal address: PO Box 2590, Wellington 6001, New Zealand

Document Exchange Number: sp 23534, Wellington

Telephone: (04) 473–3453, Facsimile: (04) 471–0959



Report/Law Commission, Wellington, 1999

issn 0113–2334 isbn 1–877187–34–8 (Volume 1)

isbn Full Evidence set 1–877187–36–4

This report may be cited as: nzlc r55 – Volume 1

24 August 1999

Dear Minister

I am pleased to submit to you Report 55 of the Law Commission, Evidence Law Reform, in response to terms of reference given to the Law Commission by your predecessor, the Rt. Hon Sir Geoffrey Palmer, in August 1989.

The Report is in two volumes. Volume 1 contains a discussion of the problems in the current law and the Commission’s recommendations for reform. Volume II contains the Evidence Code and Commentary. The Code sets out the Commission’s recommendations in the form of a draft statute. The Commentary explains how the Code provisions are intended to operate and is an integral part of the Code. The Report is accompanied by a miscellaneous paper which gathers together much of the current research on human memory. This research is the basis for a number of provisions in the Code.

The Report is the culmination of a decade of research and consultation with special interest groups and individuals. The process is described in the preface.

Yours sincerely

The Hon Justice Baragwanath


The Hon Tony Ryall

Minister of Justice

Parliament Buildings


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