Cancer Society of New Zealand v. Ministry of Health

The New Zealand Ministry of Health inspected a portion of a casino complex and determined that it constituted an “open area” under the Smoke-free Environments Act. The Cancer Society of New Zealand and other organizations disagreed with the Ministry’s interpretation and asked the Court to review the issue. The Court found that the Ministry’s enforcement agents improperly relied on an “Open Areas Calculator” (a mathematical tool) in determining whether the space was substantially enclosed. The Court found that the Open Areas Calculator was inconsistent with the definition of an “open area” in the law. The Court ordered the Ministry to reconsider whether the area of the casino could allow smoking under the law. 


Cancer Society of New Zealand & Ors. v. Ministry of Health & Ors., CIV-2013-404-488 (2013) NZHC 2538.

  • New Zealand
  • Sep 30, 2013
  • High Court of New Zealand, Auckland Registry



  • The Cancer Society of New Zealand Incorporated
  • The Problem Gambling Foundation of New Zealand
  • The Salvation Army New Zealand Trust


  • Auckland Regional Public Health Service
  • Skycity Auckland Limited
  • The Ministry of Health

Legislation Cited

International/Regional Instruments Cited

Related Documents

Type of Litigation

Tobacco Control Topics

Substantive Issues

Type of Tobacco Product