Our lawyers keep up with the latest trends and issues in New Zealand law and business, and regularly publish articles and reports on current topics.

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Beware The Risks Of Interpreting Contracts

Written by Mark Sullivan, PARTNER on July 16th, 2018.    

Do you know the principles the Courts apply when interpreting contracts?  These principles were recently considered by the Court of Appeal in GTV Holdings Ltd v Harris [2018] NZCA 95, a case involving the sale of a business.  The same principles apply to other contracts but are often misunderstood and lead to conflict.

'Tis the Season - Tidying Your Affairs

Written by Mark Sullivan, PARTNER on October 27th, 2016.    

The days are getting longer, the sun is shining brighter and Christmas is coming.  But despite the spring air, there’s something keeping you from enjoying things quite as much as you know you should be.  If you have something lurking in the corner of your mind, now is the time to resolve it so that you can enjoy the holiday season with a clear desk and clear mind.

Mistakes in Contracts: How “Final” is a “Full and Final” Settlement Agreement If You Reach Agreement By Mistake

Written by Caroline Harris, PARTNER on August 5th, 2016.    

In Prattley Enterprise Limited v Vero Insurance New Zealand Ltd the Court of Appeal considered how “final” a “full and final” settlement clause was when a party argued that there had been a mistake when entering into the settlement agreement.  

Validating an Invalid Will

Written by Caroline Harris, PARTNER on July 28th, 2016.    

Many people are aware that in order to create a valid will a number of formal legal requirements must be met: A valid will must be in writing and must be witnessed in a particular way, by two witnesses.  The Wills Act 2007 introduced important changes that allow a Court, in certain situations, to validate documents that appear to be a will or that record the testamentary intentions of the deceased.

Building Law Update: Changes to the Building Act 2004

Written by Mark Sullivan, PARTNER on February 2nd, 2015.    

The Government has made significant changes to the Building Act 2004 (and supporting regulations) which will affect the way you interact with your customers. These changes came into force on 1 January 2015 and carry some hefty penalties for non-compliance. If you are a builder, plumber, electrician or tradesman involved in residential construction, these changes will apply to you.

Lucan Battison Successful Over Unlawful School Rules

Written by Glenn Finnigan, PARTNER on July 1st, 2014.    

Recently the Nation watched with interest as Lucan Battison successfully took St John’s College to the High Court after being suspended for refusing to cut his hair. We have summarised the case below, and provided some general comments about how schools can avoid or minimise the risk of having disciplinary decisions based on non-compliance with school rules challenged.

Are Your Neighbours' Trees or Hedges Blocking Your View?

Written by Mark Sullivan, PARTNER on July 11th, 2012.    

The story usually goes something like this……. You bought a house because you fell in love with the view. However, over the years, the trees grew or a new structure was erected that not only obstructs your view but also casts a shadow over your property. It could be affecting your health or garden and your enjoyment of your home.

2012 Developments Under the Personal Property Securities Act

Written by Caroline Harris, PARTNER; Mark Sullivan, PARTNER on July 2nd, 2012.    

During the first half of 2012 the Courts have delivered a number of decisions that will be of interest to Insolvency Practitioners and commercial creditors who deal with the Personal Property Securities Act 1999 (PPSA).  This update summarises the more significant decisions.

Assessing Your Customers' Credit Risk: New Changes to Credit Reporting Law

Written by Mark Sullivan, PARTNER; Caroline Harris, PARTNER on May 21st, 2012.    

Changes to the Credit Reporting Privacy Code from 1 April 2012 mean that better credit information is now available for businesses wanting to assess the credit risk of their customers.  New Zealand has moved to a “positive” credit reporting system which will provide a more complete picture of a customer’s credit history and performance.   

Notes for Directors - Will I Make a Difference or Lose My Shirt?

Written by Mark Sullivan, PARTNER; Darryl King, PARTNER; on May 1st, 2012.    

The recent recession has brought about a sea change in the way that we look at the role of a company director and directors’ liability. It is no longer seen as a comfortable position of power and control but it attracts the real risk of personal liability for a director. In addition, proposed changes to company law criminalise breaches of certain directors’ duties in an effort to increase accountability and protect investors.
Topics: All, Business, Litigation

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