News & thinking

Peter Woods

Southern Response decision unlocks $300m more

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Southern Response’s decision to accept the Court of Appeal's findings in the Dodds’ case allows at least 3,000 Christchurch policyholders who settled their claims before 1 October 2014 to receive compensation of $100,000 each, on average,…
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Judgment day

Judgments allow Southern Response to pay $300m compensation directly to Canterbury homeowners.  At Anthony Harper, we support a wide range of businesses, organisations and individuals every day to help them further their goals or solve the…

Reflecting on the 10-year anniversary of the Pike River Mine explosion

Ten years ago the Pike River Mine exploded, killing 29 men working underground.  This tragedy affected not just the victims but also their families, the array of businesses involved in the mine, and the broader West Coast community.  At…
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Impact of COVID-19 on contractual obligations

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With the widespread disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses will be worried about how this impacts contractual performance. In particular, the first lockdown, and the recent sudden move to Alert Levels 2 and 3 will have…

Honey Bees takes the sting out of penalty clauses

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The Supreme Court has upheld previous decisions in finding that when it comes to penalty clauses, the measure is no longer whether the penalty is a "genuine pre-estimate of loss". A penalty clause will now be enforceable unless it is "out…
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5 Key learnings from the Covid-19 lockdown

The aftermath of the COVID-19 lockdown will likely see a significant litigation spike, as there will inevitably be disputes about parties’ contractual obligations and who bears the risk of lockdown ramifications. We have looked back on…

What will happen to my scheduled Court case?

This FAQ is intended to clarify some of the uncertainty about proceedings that are currently on-foot (i.e. filed before or during the Level 4 alert restrictions).   The information contained in this FAQ is focused primarily on proceedings…
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Safe harbour for directors – Relief for businesses or storm brewing?

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Parliament is introducing legislation to amend the Companies Act to assist companies facing solvency issues as a result of COVID-19. The hope is that this will assist companies to trade through and keep employees on board during this time…

Court proceedings under COVID-19 alert level four

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At midnight on Wednesday 25 March 2020 New Zealand moved into COVID-19 alert level 4, after which, only essential services remain operating.   The Ministry of Justice has advised that the Courts will be closed to the public, and only…

Supreme Court clarifies the law under s292 of the Companies Act

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The Supreme Court has now issued a judgment in Robt. Jones Holdings Limited v McCullagh and Lawrence in [2019] NZSC 86.  The decision clarifies the test under section 292, giving liquidators and advisors certainty around what must be proven…

The ‘Clean Slate’ Act – What you need to know

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Like many millennials, the Criminal Records (Clean Slate) Act 2004 (Act) remains widely misunderstood. It seems that people either grossly exaggerate its power and scope, or reduce its operation to a twink pen for drink driving convictions. Misconceptions…

Earthquake-hit ex-Rydges hotel building clears Supreme Court insurance battle

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After legal debates over fractions of a millimetre, a final court decision has at last cleared the way for a $190 million repair and rebuild project in central Christchurch. Partner, Peter Woods, discusses what is next for this landmark…

Court of Appeal ruling challenges confidentiality of documents provided to the Financial Markets Authority

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Court of Appeal ruling challenges confidentiality of documents provided to the Financial Markets Authority The Court of Appeal has issued a much-awaited judgment regarding the ability of the Financial Markets Authority (FMA) to disclose to…

Court halts litigation spanning 25 years

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On 1 March 2017, the Senior Courts Act 2016 (Act) came into force. The Act replaced the Judicature Act 1908 and introduced several changes, including specific provisions restricting vexatious litigants from commencing or continuing proceedings…