Qualifications : BCA, LLB (Hons), University of Wellington.
As a civil and commercial dispute resolution specialist, Kate represents clients in a broad range of business and local government disputes. A recommended lawyer in The Legal 500 Asia Pacific, she has considerable experience working for clients in the agriculture, energy and local government sectors, and regularly advises clients on intellectual property disputes.
Kate’s meticulous approach makes her a highly effective representative at all levels of the New Zealand court system. Clients value her proactive, commercial approach to dispute resolution and her clear and concise advice which demonstrates an in-depth understanding of their commercial reality.
A successful change leader, Kate is a member of the Tompkins Wake Working parents’ forum, helping her colleagues and the firm create better options for optimising whole life balance.
Areas of expertise
- Alternative Dispute Resolution
- Competition Law Disputes
- Competition Law
- Consumer Law
- Dairy Industry
- Energy Sector - Oil, Gas, Electricity
- Local Government Litigation
- Patent and Copyright Litigation
- Commercial Disputes
- Intellectual Property
- Corporate Disputes
- Media Law
- Securities / Financial Markets Litigation
- Property Disputes
- Recommended Lawyer, Dispute Resolution and Intellectual Property, The Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2020 and 2021
- Tompkins Wake, 2010 - present
- Chapman Tripp, 2005 - 2009
AGPAC and Others v Hamilton City Council Co-counsel - Acted (with Alan Galbraith QC and Lachlan Muldowney) for Hamilton City Council successfully defending a wide-ranging judicial review challenge to its development contributions policy.
Open Country Dairy Ltd v Commerce Commission – Acted for Open Country Dairy to clarify the appropriate process that Fonterra should follow in setting the farm gate milk price and how the Commerce Commission should carry out its obligations to review and report on Fonterra’s processes.
Moeke v South Waikato District Council – Acted for the Council in its successful application to have a caveat lapse on the grounds that the contract had been cancelled.
Lead counsel in the Court of Appeal for a landowner successfully appealing a High Court decision that had allowed a caveat to remain over its land.
Co-counsel with Alan Galbraith QC in the High Court and Court of Appeal on an important case testing the status of Queen Elizabeth Trust Open Space covenants.
Commerce Act proceedings – Acted as counsel for a large international company in connection with an investigation and subsequent proceedings under the Commerce Act.
Judicial review of Hamilton City Council's development contributions policy
The High Court has released a judgment in AGPAC Limited and others v Hamilton City Council  NZHC 222. This is the first major substantive decis...
Guidance on Development Contributions
New Zealand’s current housing shortage has demonstrated that New Zealand urgently needs to build more houses. However, new developments can create cha...
Are councils obliged to provide a forum for unpopular views?
Councils have been in the news recently in relation to their obligations under the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990 (BORA). Around New Zealand, cou...
Interpreting contracts - implied terms and prior negotiations
When people enter into a contract, they usually try to make the terms of the contract as clear as possible and anticipate any issues that might arise ...
Email quarantine: getting it right
Councils, like other employers, have obligations to protect their employees from harm. Quarantining abusive or offensive emails is one method of doin...
New process for calculating court-awarded interest
A new process for calculating Court-awarded interest on debt and compensation claims (‘money claims’) is now in place, since the Interest on Money Cla...
Slippery slopes: local authority liability for landslips
The setting aside of esplanade reserve when land is developed on the coast or alongside lakes and rivers, means that local authorities own or control ...
Nobody wants to have to file a defamation action any more than they want to be served with one. Defamation litigation can be stressful, time-consumin...
Local Authorities owe a duty of care to their neighbours - High Court decision
A recent decision of the High Court is a timely reminder to Councils of their obligations as a landowner to owners of neighbouring properties.Double J...