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Comparison websites will tell you which banks have the lowest fixed term mortgage rates for each period and outline your potential mortgage savings. These comparisons can […]


Has your money been disappearing down the gurgler? It is often easy to get into debt, but not so easy to get out of it. Debt […]


Whether you like it or not, New Zealand/Aotearoa’s minimum wage is set to increase from the first of April 2023. Accordingly, we thought we would remind […]


The internet has flipped the script on how to successfully operate a business. Gone are the days when billboards and print media reigned supreme as the […]


Time to refinance your mortgage? With rising interest rates and no apparent respite in sight, could it be time to refinance your mortgage? The uncertainty regarding […]


The travel restrictions and economic downturn caused by COVID has had a profound effect on both New Zealand’s employment market and on immigration of skilled workers. […]


Do you intend to subdivide your property? It is common to view subdivision projects as difficult and complicated procedures, but with the assistance of expert advisors […]


The trusts landscape has changed drastically over the last three years after being relatively consistent for more than half a century. Trusts and trustees in this […]


It is no secret that the property market has been red hot across New Zealand over the past few years. This was initially great for both […]


Property (Relationships) Act 1976 Most people have a vague idea that if they break-up with their partner, they’ll have to divide some of the property they […]


Gaining residence status in New Zealand can be a challenging and rigorous process. Recently, it had also become a very long process, with many applicants waiting […]


Tired of being told you need to say ‘no’  to avocado on toast in order to get onto the property ladder? Buying your first home is […]

The COVID-19 Series: Chapter Two

Chapter Two: Vaccinations for non- ‘Regulated’ Businesses In our previous blog (read here) we outlined how to navigate the new COVID-19 Traffic Light Framework if you […]

The COVID-19 Series: Chapter One

Chapter One: Food + Beverage, Close Proximity, and Gyms  Many local businesses and organisations have approached Wakefields Lawyers to help them navigate the new COVID-19 Traffic […]

Kāinga Ora Shared Ownership Scheme

Many new home buyers in New Zealand are finding it impossible to get on to the property ladder. With house prices rocketing, for many it seems […]

6 Ways To Protect Yourself As A Business Owner

Running a business is hard work, as any business owner knows only too well. There are staff to think about, cash flow to worry about and […]

COVID-19 – Commercial Leases

With the country being plunged into a level 4 lockdown again, most landlords and tenants will recall the uncertainty that followed when the country was put […]

COVID-19 – Employee Vaccination FAQs

With the pandemic feeling more real than ever, many business owners are wondering what they can do to keep their employees and businesses safe. Getting vaccinated […]

COVID-19 – Getting Your Employment Response Right

As we enter Level 4 lockdown again, the last thing your business needs is to be exposed to the risk of a personal grievance, so take […]

How safe is the cash you put into your business?

We often see business owners who haven’t thought to protect the money they have personally put into their company. Many aren’t even aware they can get […]

Employers – Do You Hire Migrant Workers?

For advice on how to avoid penalties and minimise delays in getting the workers you need, read on. Immigration New Zealand (INZ) are making some major […]

The Key to Performance Development

Employees are the key to business growth and success, so it should be no surprise that helping staff to perform well is an important part of […]

Privacy Law Update

Introducing… the Privacy Act 2020 Did you know that the Privacy Act has changed? As of 1st December, the Privacy Act 2020 has now come into […]

Employers Beware: The Perils of Work Christmas Parties

Over the next few weeks, New Zealand workplaces will be taking a moment to head off and celebrate the end of the challenging year that 2020 […]

Equal Pay Amendments Now in Force!

In July this year, Parliament unanimously agreed to changes to the Equal Pay Act 1972, which come into force today, 6 November 2020. The changes are […]

What does a Labour election win mean for the employment landscape?

Now that the dust has settled after the recent election, what does the Labour parliamentary majority mean for the employment law landscape? Unsurprisingly, Labour’s Workplace Relations […]

Tenancy in Common vs. Joint Tenancy

Buying a house is probably the biggest purchase that most of us will ever make. In days gone by, most houses were either bought by a […]

Buying off the Plan

In a tight housing market, buying an apartment, townhouse or house off the plan can be a very attractive proposition. As well as securing a brand […]

Essential Skills Work Visa Changes

Changes the Government announced last year to improve the employer assisted temporary work visa system came into effect on 27 July 2020. Until that point, a […]

Triangular Employment Update

The most common type of “triangular employment” is when a labour hire or recruitment company arranges for their employees to do work for a third party […]

Paying Staff Under the Table?

Wakefields Lawyers understands the challenges that come with running your own business, particularly when you get busy enough to start thinking about taking on staff. Employing […]

Know what you don’t know – and get help!

We’ve been helping a number of employee clients recently, with a worrying theme running through many of their claims that their employer simply didn’t know what […]

Getting Redundancy Right

The first wave of redundancies is well and truly here and it’s not pretty. We’ve been conducting free consultations in these last few weeks, some of which have […]

Care of Children & COVID-19 – Who Will Have the Kids During Lockdown?

On 23 March 2020, the government announced that from midnight on 25 March 2020, New Zealand will raise the alert level to level 4 in relation to […]

Retirement Village Living

Throughout the ages and stages of our lives, we make a number of big decisions and changes. For some of us, deciding to make the move […]

Stay in the loop as a trustee! Major changes coming 2021.

For the first time in 70 years there are major changes coming to the laws that govern the establishment and operation of trusts. The Trusts Act […]

Revised Immigration Rules

The Government has recently announced a re-opening of the Parent Category for immigration purposes, which had been frozen since 2016 and has now been closed. However, […]

Thinking About Becoming a Trustee?

From time to time you may be asked to be a trustee of a trust for someone – be it a friend, colleague or relative. While […]

All About Employment Relationships

It’s no surprise that employment relationships are a major feature of our lives. Many of us spend more time at work than we do in our […]

Work Place Bullying. Should Employers Be Concerned? The Answer Is Yes.

With the recent publication of the External Independent Review, ‘Bullying and Harassment in the New Zealand Parliamentary Workplace’ and the ongoing coverage of bullying in the […]

Appointing Attorneys to Act on Your Behalf

It’s been a hot topic recently with a number of people asking us how General and Enduring Powers of Attorney work. A general power of attorney […]

Have You Heard of the KiwiSaver HomeStart Grant?

Every penny counts when buying your first home! There are many options for financing your purchase; some including, your own savings, your KiwiSaver, and the KiwiSaver […]

The Case of Mainzeal Property and Construction Limited

The case of Mainzeal Property and Construction Limited v Yan has been one of the highest profile cases in the last number of years. This case involves one […]

New ‘Gateways’ For Employers and Migrants

Immigration New Zealand is seeking feedback on its proposal to change work visa settings; to make them more employer-led, and hopefully, more responsive to the labour […]

Are You Thinking of Renting Your Property?

New Zealanders have a particular affinity for investing in residential property. We see large numbers of our clients retaining ownership of their first home when they […]

How the Changes to the Relationship Property Act Affect You

Are you married or in a de facto relationship? Are you thinking of moving in with that special someone? Do you already have a contracting out […]

New Zealand’s Long Term Skills Shortage

IMPORTANT: From June 2018, there have been changes to the work visa system, leaving skills shortages to not be relevant anymore. Please check out the Wakefields […]

Cross Lease – What Exactly Is This?

  Now that the worst of winter seems to have passed and the property market is heating back up, it’s time to look at one of […]

Anti-Money Laundering Requirements

  Chances are, if you have recently approached us for legal assistance, you would have received an email from us with details of the new Anti-Money […]

‘Digital Assets’ – What Exactly Are They?

  Welcome back to our tech blogs! Our last tech blog was on the digital estate planning of your crypto assets. Since then we’ve presented at a […]

Possible Consequences for Commercial Tenants

  There is a massive accounting change on the horizon that will have significant adverse implications on many commercial tenants and the way they view the […]

Buying Property – Should You Meth Test?

Have you been thinking about purchasing property? Have you heard any of the media buzz around methamphetamine contamination testing or seen advertisements from any companies offering […]

Ever Considered Importing Your Staff?

  With applications for labour-market-tested work visas often taking 60 days or more to process and continuing low unemployment, it’s timely to consider whether becoming an […]

Can You Make an Electronic Will?

Can you execute an electronic will?  Possibly, but currently the options are extremely limited. While the Wills Act 2007 does contemplate the possibility of executing a […]

What’s the State of Your Digital Estate?

You started with a little Bitcoin, then maybe you bought some Ether. Over time your portfolio got more complex as you traded and purchased a variety […]

Estonia – The Digital Nation

Estonia – the Blockchain Nation A glimpse into our tech future? Estonian Independence Day is on 24 February, so what better time to have SimpleTech highlight […]

What is an ICO? A simple summary to bring you up to speed!

What is an ICO? A simple summary to bring you up to speed! Following on from our Bitcoin and blockchain tech blogs of recent, 2017 saw […]

What’s in a name? Protecting what could be your most valuable asset!

You’ve got your million dollar idea, your business plan, investors and, importantly, a really unique and catchy name for your company! Protecting your name can be […]

Company Share Apartments: What are you actually buying?

Company share apartments are a unique form of ownership arrangement where the owner doesn’t technically own an estate in land, but owns shares in a company […]

Three Basic Methods of Business Valuation

Three Basic Methods of Business Valuation From Guest Blogger, Dave Morgan at LINK Business Broking If you’re considering selling your company, it helps to understand methods of […]

Simple Tech: Sustaining v Disrupting

Welcome to the first in a series of tech blogs coming your way each month! In this series of blogs, the Wakefields Tech Team will bring […]

Ever thought about selling your business?

Ever considered selling your business? Here's a simple summary of the big questions you might have. Assets or Shares? One of the first questions you will […]

Who’s Consenting to Your Home Improvement?

From the Property Team   We’ve been discussing a recent news article where a property owner got into hot water after demolishing their own house and […]

What’s Hiding in Your Lease

Are you contemplating entering into a new commercial lease? These documents are far more complex than your simple residential lease and therefore harder to understand, especially […]

The Building Blocks of Business

Starting your own business comes with so many complex decisions, one of the first is figuring out what corporate structure to use. In most instances, you’ll […]

Ask a Lawyer: Do I need a LIM?

Ask a Lawyer: Do I need a LIM?   Angela recently emailed us to ask: ‘I’m looking at buying a house, why do I need to […]

Suits to Gumboots: Matiu/Somes Island

On a damp winter’s morning a group of excited, warmly dressed lawyers boarded the East by West Ferry to cross Wellington Harbour and landed on beautiful […]

Business in the Cloud: Taking the World by Storm

Business in the Cloud: Taking the World by Storm From the Technology Law Team   The concept of cloud computing has been around since the 1990s, […]

Ask a Lawyer: How much do you really work?

Lisa & Sarah braving the weather to feed the hungry sheep and meet the newest residents on Matiu/Somes Island for our annual volunteer day. Ask a […]

To Airbnb or not to Airbnb?

To Airbnb or not to Airbnb? From the Property Team Property owners are increasingly turning to websites like and to earn extra income and offset their […]

Bach Tax: What to do if you’re renting your holiday home.

Bach Tax: What to do if you’re renting your holiday home. From the Property Team New Zealanders have a great love affair with holiday homes. Since […]

Ask a Lawyer: Does a Will Outright a Trust?

Ask a Lawyer: Does a Will Outright a Trust? From the Wealth Protection Team A reader wrote to us and asked: ‘Does a will outright a trust?’ By […]

Purchaser’s Perspective: What conditions should I put in my offer on a house?

Purchaser’s Perspective: What conditions should I put in my Sale & Purchase Agreement when making an offer on a house? From the Property Team Finding a […]

Hope for the Best, Prepare for the Worst – Understanding Relationship Property 

You’ve probably heard that there are three versions of the truth – her version; his version and somewhere in between. Nobody wants to end up feeling […]

The Value of Employee Share Schemes

One way to attract, retain and incentivise talent is to give your employees an opportunity to participate financially in the growth of your business. One way […]

Thought about your Family Trust recently?

When was the last time you gave any thought to your Family Trust? Here’s what you might not know about how to look after it successfully… […]

There’s more than one way to raise the rent.

Here’s what you might not know about your commercial lease… Rent costs are likely to be one of the ultimate factors in determining where you base […]

Ever wondered what your social media is worth?

Have you ever wondered what your social media is worth? Here’s what you need to know about social media accounts as an asset. Social media is […]

What you need to know about offering employees shares in your business.

Too often, as lawyers, we find ourselves engaged in a business sale where the parties, or their advisers, have neglected to consider the implications of the […]

Selling a Property? Taxation is Coming!

Are you going to have to pay up to 33% resident land withholding tax on your next property sale? There are now laws in place to […]

Protect your Tech – How to share your ideas safely.

How can you keep your software idea confidential & safe? The simplest and most complete answer to this question is to keep your product or program […]

Can You Trust Your Trust? What you need to know to protect your home.

Can You Trust Your Trust? The following hypothetical scenario is very common: Jess has decided to purchase a residential property. Jess is currently single, but is […]

Updates to the Employment Relations Act

Nearly a year ago there were a large number of changes to employment law relating to zero hours contracts. Under these contracts, employers were not guaranteeing […]

Closely-Held Companies – The Importance of a Co-ownership Agreement

What is a closely-held company? At Wakefields we specialise in dealing with smaller companies known as closely-held companies, or so-called ‘mum and dad’ type companies. These […]

Earthquake Prone Buildings

A number of commercial buildings in the Wellington CBD suffered extensive damage in the recent earthquake. This seems like an appropriate time to explain the implications […]

Is your insurance up to scratch?

Six years on from the Christchurch Earthquakes, insurance claims are still being settled through EQC. With the recent Culverden earthquake, now is a good time to […]

Is Your Business Earthquake Safe?

Wellington and the upper South Island recently experienced an unprecedented earthquake, causing serious disruption to life in the CBD. Many businesses are still displaced from their […]

Eureka! Now What?

New Zealanders are master inventors, and Wellington especially has a great reputation for cultivating ‘start-ups’. What Kiwi inventors are not quite so good at is moving […]

The Legal Results of a Market Decline

When a market is in relative good health, there is a good chance economists will be predicting a future decline. In light of the current press […]

Buying Goods Subject to Security – the ‘Ordinary Course of Business’ Exemption

When buying or leasing valuable goods, it is important to check that they are not subject to a security interest.   Otherwise, the secured party is able to […]

The Ins and Outs of a Restraint of Trade Clause

The world of business is increasingly competitive.   Business owners, as employers, have become more focused on securing and safeguarding information that sustains their business – such […]

Buildings and Warrants of Fitness

Many commercial and multi-residential buildings require an annual building warrant of fitness (‘BWOF’) to prove that the building’s safety systems have been maintained and inspected. The […]

Flatmate or De Facto Partner?

The Property (Relationships) Act 1976 (‘Act’) provides an equal sharing presumption to relationship property for qualifying relationships.   Qualifying relationships are marriages, civil unions or de facto […]

Property Purchase – Meth Testing

Methamphetamine (‘Meth’) contamination has been described as being so prevalent that it could be worse than the leaky home crisis that affected New Zealand in the […]

The Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill – A Look At The Changes For Landlords & Tenants

Residential Tenancies Amendment Bill was introduced to Parliament on 3 December 2015, and with it came a number of interesting proposed changes to the Residential Tenancies […]

Updated Agreement For Sale & Purchase Of Real Estate

Recent changes to the widely used Agreement for Sale & Purchase of Real Estate prepared by the Auckland District Law Society and the Real Estate Institute […]

The Health & Safety At Work Act 2015 – In Force From 4 April 2016

In New Zealand, more than one in ten workers claim for a workplace injury each year.   To address this, the new Health and Safety at Work […]

Gift Vouchers – What Happens If The Business Goes Into Receivership?

It is an unfortunate reality of business that businesses fail.   When this happens, it can affect a wide range of different parties and their ability to […]

How Well Do You Know Your Lease?

The majority of lease arrangements are entered into using the Deed of Lease provided by the Auckland District Law Society.   Whether you are a business owner […]

Buying A Vehicle – Is There Money Owing?

If you are in the process of purchasing a vehicle privately, it is very important to check that there is no money owing on it. This […]

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