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Language: English | Māori

Setting up a governance structure

Steps to set up a Māori land trust

To put Māori land into a trust, you'll need to get agreement from the other owners and apply to the Māori Land Court.

To set up any kind of Māori land trust or incorporation, you'll need to show you've consulted with the other owners and have general agreement to set up a governance structure.

You need to discuss and get agreement at a meeting of owners, with as many owners there as possible, and at least a quorum.

The first step is to invite owners to the hui and notify them of the intention to set up a whenua Māori trust or incorporation.

What the invitation should include

You can let owners know about the hui in different ways, depending on how many of you there are. If there are not too many of you and you are able to contact everyone, you can get in touch individually.

But if there are lots of owners and you can't contact them all separately, you need to be able to show in your trust application that you've made every effort to contact them. This could include posts in social media like Facebook or ads in local newspapers or radio in the area the whenua is located.

The notice should include:

  • the date, time and venue for the hui
  • the intention to:
    • propose the creation of a trust or incorporation
    • create the terms of the trust or incorporation
    • nominate trustees
  • any other decisions or resolutions that will be discussed
  • contact details for the organisers.

Meeting of Owners – Newspaper advertisement template [DOCX 33KB]

You can ask the Māori Land Court (MLC) to help you call the hui on behalf of owners. Contact MLC kaimahi to find out more.

Form 32 – Application to call meeting of owners [PDF 83KB]