Privy Council


Until 2004, the final appeal court for New Zealand cases; this role assumed as at 1 January 2004 by the Supreme Court of New Zealand.

Governing legislation

Jurisdiction was established in New Zealand by British statutes which are currently in force in this country via the Imperial Laws Application Act 1988. Relevant parts of this legislation were repealed, as from 1 January 2004, by the Supreme Court Act 2003.


Judgments since November 1996 available from the House of Lords website;  other sources with variable chronological coverage: BAILLI , Lexis & Thomson Reuters Westlaw databases.

Indexed by


Reported in

NZPCC (1840-1932).  Decisions may be reported in a wide range of general or subject-specific report series.


The Privy Council was originally a group of advisers drawn from the King's Council, a body through which the monarch governed. Its power to hear cases arising in England was abolished in 1641, but it continues to have appellate jurisdiction in some former British colonies, hence its place in the New Zealand court system.