Legal articles & publications

Review with caution: trade competitors and judicial review under the Resource Management Act 1991

By: Mike Doesburg, Jesse Aimer

A recent High Court decision demonstrates the difficulties faced by trade competitors, with ulterior commercial motives, challenging decisions made under the Resource Management Act 1991 (Act).

Real estate agents – can you believe what your clients tell you?

By: Richard Hargreaves

This article focuses on two topics: agents’ liability for passing on a third party’s report, and agents’ liability for passing on incorrect information told to them by the vendor.

New entrepreneur? When’s the right time to engage a lawyer?

By: Nick Kovacevich

Nick Kovacevich, Partner at Wynn Williams interviews Jake Millar, CEO of Unfiltered about his experiences as an entrepreneur starting out.

Building law reform – risk and liability proposals

By: Stephanie Woods

The Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment (MBIE) is currently consulting on a range of proposed reforms to building law. One area of consultation relates to the allocation of risk and liability in the building sector. One option being considered is a requirement for builders to offer guarantee and insurance products for all residential new builds and for significant alterations. MBIE has also considered, and at this stage rejected, changes to the liability regime for building consent authorities.

On, or off the clock?

By: Anthony Drake

There is a trend in a number of recent employment cases where the courts have considered the demands of work and the demands of family or personal life. In a recent decision of the Employment Court the full court ruled that an employee’s private time is a valuable commodity and accepted the proposition that where an employer purports to reserve the unilateral ability to require an employee to work past their usual hours it does materially constrain a worker’s ability to plan their life away from work.

The use of probationary periods

By: Anthony Drake

On 6 May 2019 the Government scrapped the use of trial periods for employers with more than 20 employees. However, employers are still entitled to use probationary periods at the beginning of an employment relationship to assess a new employee’s skills or for an employee who is changing jobs with the same employer, but it is important to be aware of the legal obligations they impose.

Insurance contracts and conduct of financial institutions review – MBIE Options Papers released

By: Stephanie Woods

The Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment has now released Options Papers for its review of insurance contract law and also for the conduct of financial institutions. This article discusses some of the key changes being considered.

Privacy Bill 2018 – new privacy requirements – is your company compliant?

By: Bethany Entwistle

The highly anticipated Privacy Bill was introduced to Parliament in March 2018 (the Bill) and is due to come into effect in July 2019. It will replace the Privacy Act 1993 and aims to modernise New Zealand’s privacy law framework, in accordance with international laws such as the European General Data Protection Regulation 2018.

Capital raise – there is no one size fits all

By: Tom Corkill

When looking to raise equity capital for your business, it is crucial to understand that there is no one size fits all approach. A business will need to understand the full range of capital raising options available to it and then choose the option which not only optimises the actual cash raised but the value added to the business by an investor.

What are the restrictions/limitations of a cross lease title?

By: Angela Brown

A cross lease title was historically one of the two most common ways a property could be subdivided and contains rights of ownership and rights of use. New cross leases are not very common now. If you are looking to buy a property which is a cross lease title you should look carefully at the terms of the lease.

New employment provisions for domestic violence victims

By: Amanda Douglas

New law, to make provision for victims of domestic violence, comes into force on 1 April 2019. Those affected by domestic violence will be entitled to: 10 days domestic violence leave per year, ask for short-term flexible working options and not be discriminated against due to being affected by domestic violence.

Directors’ liability in the spotlight

By: Jordan Halligan

When Mainzeal Property and Construction Limited (Mainzeal) collapsed in February 2013, it left behind a raft of unsecured creditors who were jointly owed just over $110 million. The proceedings brought by Mainzeal’s liquidators against its former directors were for the effective benefit of these creditors.

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