A judge is facing criticism for handing down what are being seen as lenient sentences in two cases.
Judge Raoul Neave sentenced an Auckland investment banker to community service for running over a man and breaking his legs, and gave a dangerous driver who killed 21-year-old Danielle Reeves in Christchurch nine months' home detention.
Ms Reeves' mother is accusing the judge of being out of touch with society.
Law Society president Jonathan Temm says if there are grounds to appeal, the due process must be followed.
"It shouldn't be a criticism against the judicial officer who's imposing the penalty - if you want to appeal, go ahead. But don't criticise the judicial officer who's done what they think is right in the circumstances before them."
Mr Temm says if people are correct in their reasons for appeal, the sentence will be corrected.
He says the appeal system is there for a reason.
"Not everything in our judicial system works correctly at the first take, okay, so there sometimes are decisions that are later on appeal, adjusted or improved or corrected."
Mr Temm says if those directly affected aren't happy with the sentence, they should follow due process and appeal.
The victim in the Auckland case is considering an appeal.
Mr Temm says in New Zealand judges are independent.
"Just because they impose a sentence that other people don't agree with, doesn't mean that they're now in some way incompetent and it's the right of everyone to stand up and criticise."
He says on one side there's the appeal process.
"On another side there's the issue in conduct of the judge themselves and there is the judicial conduct commissioner that deals with complaints in relation to that, but I don't perceive the issues you're talking about fall into that category."
Mr Temm says judges are also monitored internally by their heads of bench, and where required, steps are taken.