BA, LLB (Hons), Associate
Jonathan Pow
Having practised as a commercial lawyer for a number of years, Jonny switched his focus to insurance in 2012, specialising in insurance issues for bodies corporate and multi-unit dwellings, alongside earthquake claim presentation and settlement negotiation for both policyholders and insurers.  Jonny is a member of the national Dispute Resolution Team and has worked extensively preparing cases for litigation.  He is particularly adept at managing and briefing expert witnesses. 
Jonny also has an active interest in sports law and acts for sportspersons and sports organisations on conduct and governance matters.  He is a member of ANZSLA and a keen road cyclist.

"I aim to turn complex legal issues into simple solutions for clients."
Wynn Williams (Christchurch)
Level 5, Wynn Williams House,
47 Hereford Street,
Christchurch 8013,
New Zealand.


Recent Projects

  • Acting for Southern Response Earthquake Services Limited to facilitate the largest settlement of insurance claims in New Zealand's history.
  • Advising bodies corporate on insurance claim settlement strategy, negotiation of terms of settlement, application of insurance proceeds and requirements and obligations under the Unit Titles Act.
  • Negotiating settlement of claims under contract works policies.
  • Providing strategy and negotiation advice for residential and commercial policyholders to settle their home and material damage earthquake claims.

Recent Articles


Do councils now owe a duty of care to building developers?

Jonathan Pow and Isabella van Woerkom discuss the recent Supreme Court decision in Southland Indoor Leisure Centre Charitable Trust v Invercargill City Council.

Keep reading...


Deadline for 4 September 2010 earthquake claims fast approaching

If you have an unresolved insurance claim you may need to act fast. Under New Zealand's limitation legislation (the Limitation Act 1950 and the Limitation Act 2010), you can only bring a claim within six years from the date of the event that leads to your dispute. If you bring a claim outside that time, limitation provides a complete defence.

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Independence Day: Athletes Become Neutral

There has been a lot of media attention recently, in the lead up to the Rio Olympics, about athletes who may be able to compete as 'neutrals' where their national sporting body has been banned from competing. So, just what is a 'neutral athlete'?

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The dry side of the paddle. The importance of understanding selection policies

A recent selection dispute which made its way to the New Zealand Sports Tribunal has highlighted the need for sports bodies, athletes, and the members of sports bodies to pay careful attention to selection criteria and procedures within their operative rules.

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Reopening an Insurance Cash Settlement Agreement?

The High Court, in Prattley Enterprises Limited v Vero Insurance has had its first opportunity to determine whether an insured is able to reopen a settled insurance claim. In short, the Court said that 'no'; an insured could not reopen its claim once it had signed a binding cash settlement agreement. The reasons why the Court came to this decision are worth noting.

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Hitting Match Fixing for 6

In recent years, match-fixing has reared its ugly head as very real threat to sport globally.Cricket, unfortunately, has borne the brunt of a lot of recent media attention over match-fixing and it is timely that, with the Cricket World Cup 2015 ("CWC 2015") recently ending, we acknowledge recent measures taken to reduce the threat of match-fixing in New Zealand.

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MEMA returns to the 'crease'

The Cricket World Cup is now upon us! This is the first in a series of 3 articles which teases out a number of topical legal issues which impact on the Cricket World Cup. With the Cricket World Cup 2015 now underway, and the FIFA Under 20 Football World Cup looming on the horizon, 2015 is shaping up to be a big year for New Zealand hosting large, international sporting events.

Keep reading...


Don't leave things to chance - Reform of Incorporated Societies Act 1908: Issues for Sports Organisations - Part 3

It is very common for disputes to arise between members of societies. It is also quite common for a society's rules to be inadequate to properly deal with those disputes. This creates uncertainty as to how the dispute can be properly resolved both from the society and a member's point of view. The consequence is numerous complaints by members that they haven't been treated fairly or been properly heard.

Keep reading...


Greater Responsibility for Officers - Reform of Incorporated Societies Act 1908: Issues for Sports Organisations - Part 2

The governance of a society is the running of a society. Until now, the legislation was silent on a society's governance, specifically the duties and obligations owed by officers to societies. This is set to change. It is likely that officer's duties in the reformed legislation will be specified and will be similar to company director's duties under the Companies Act.

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Why incorporate and what are the changes - Reform of Incorporated Societies Act 1908: Issues for Sports Organisations - Part 1

The vast majority of local, regional and national sports organisations are set up as incorporated societies under the current Incorporated Societies Act 1908 (the "Act"). The Law Commission proposed reforms for this uncomfortably old piece of legislation which were tabled in Parliament on 21 August 2013. On 28 February 2014, the Government accepted almost all of the recommendations in the Law Commission's report. The recommendations will provide a very strong foundation for the Government to progress much needed reform of the Act and are unlikely to provoke any political controversy. The new legislation should come into force soon. Whilst it may create little political controversy, it will be very important for sporting organisations (and societies generally) to understand the reform as it will very likely have an impact on their rules, governance and administration matters. Over the next three articles, we look at what the proposed reform holds in store. Firstly, we discuss generally the benefits of benefits of incorporation and the proposed reform. Secondly, we look at more detail into how the changes will affect the governance of societies, new annual obligations that societies will need to meet, and addressing conflicts of interest. Thirdly and finally, we look at the features of the proposed reform on procedures for dispute resolution, the distribution of societies' assets on termination and provide an overall wash-up as to the need for societies to review their rules to see how they fit with the proposed reform.

Keep reading...


Does your contract prevent you being sued in negligence?

The Court of Appeal has recently considered this question, albeit at a very preliminary level. In 2006, the Grey District Council built an aquatic centre in Greymouth. Unfortunately, the roof of the centre was built with deficiencies. Untreated timber was used for the roof beams and at the point where aluminium and steel fixings were attached to the beams, the steel nails had corroded. The council sued its engineering company, a second engineering company (engaged by the first engineers to peer review the construction design), and an employee of the second engineering company who issued a producer statement for design to the council (the "defendants").

Keep reading...


Broker Left Without Professional Liability Cover

IAG have successfully appealed an earlier decision not to strike out an insurance broker's claim for cover under his professional liability cover. The broker had failed to place cover for his client homeowners, but made a number of assurances to them that cover was in place. The homeowners were left uninsured for subsequent earthquake damage to their house. The homeowners were successful in their claim against the broker for their loss.

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Sharing in the Proceeds: A Tenant's Interest in its Landlord's Insurance Policy

A recent decision of the High Court Earthquake List in Christchurch has considered the interests of a tenant under its landlord's insurance policy.

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Buyers Beware - The Risk of Damage to Purchased Property

A recent decision of the High Court in Christchurch shows that difficulties for vendors and purchasers remain where the property suffers damage before the property changes hands.

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Don't Get Burned - The Importance of Business Interruption Insurance

Recently a demolition business owner had three of his trucks destroyed by arson. Unfortunately, whilst the business has insurance for the damage to the trucks, it has no cover for the business it will lose with three of its fleet out of action.

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Home Owners' Success Against Insurance Broker

Earthquake damage has thrown into question the adequacy of many home and business owners' insurance cover.  Some property owners have placed cover through an insurance broker.  If the cover has proved to be inadequate, these owners may well be looking for an answer from their broker.

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Councils' Duty of Care to Purchasers of Subdivided Land

The High Court at Greymouth has recently found that a council does have a case to answer where it incorrectly certifies conditions of subdivision have been met and a subsequent purchaser of the land relies on those certifications.

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Opting-Out of EQC Managed Repairs

"Opting-out" of the Fletcher / EQC managed earthquake damage home repairs may seem like the relief that some anxious earthquake damaged homeowners are desperately seeking.  However, while it certainly serves as a useful alternative, there are risks that a homeowner must carefully consider before "leaping up to opt-out" and it may not necessarily be suitable for all.

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The Christchurch Earthquakes and Residential Tenancies

Mr Watkin was a tenant in a property which was damaged by the 22 February 2011 earthquake.  The property was left without electricity for 5 days, water or sewerage for 10 days or a usable toilet for 3 weeks.  The garage was also damaged. Mr Watkin was also concerned the chimney might also collapse into the house.  He sought compensation (an abatement of rent) from the Tenancy Tribunal under the Residential Tenancies Act.  The question to be decided was whether his house was 'uninhabitable'.

Keep reading...

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Wynn Williams Christchurch
Level 5, Wynn Williams House, 47 Hereford Street, Christchurch 8013, New Zealand.
PO Box 4341, DX WX11179, Christchurch 8140.
+64 3 379 7622
+64 3 379 2467
Wynn Williams Auckland
Level 11, AIG Building, 41 Shortland Street, Auckland 1010, New Zealand.
PO Box 2401, Shortland Street, Auckland 1140.
+64 9 300 2600
+64 9 300 2609

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