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February 2020 Newsletter

Posted by on 17 February 2020 | Comments


February 2020

  Announcement - New Managing Partner

Harmans is pleased to announce that as from 1 February 2020 Mark Sherry has been appointed as the firm’s new Managing Partner. He will replace Graeme Riach who has been at the helm for the past nine years. During that period Graeme has led the firm through some challenging times post-earthquake including retrieval of our IT equipment, files and deeds from the old city office, over-seeing the Papanui premises fit-out and successfully navigating Harmans back to its roots with the re-opening of our new Central City office. Graeme is looking forward to devoting more of his time to his civil and commercial litigation practice along with an increasing workload from his Law Society Council role.

Mark joined Harmans in 1995 as a graduate lawyer, and became a partner in 2002. He is a leader of our large commercial and property team, specialising in most areas of commercial law including franchising, commercial conveyancing, property development, leasing matters and business sales and purchases. He brings a wealth of experience to his new role including management, finance, strategy and policy. Mark will expand his duties and oversee the management of the firm while continuing to develop strategy and growth at Board level. He will, of course, continue to take care of his clients with the same high level of service.

Please join us in congratulating Mark.


This article was written by Lewis Gibson and Pip Childs.

It is estimated that there are some 300-500,000 trusts currently in existence in New Zealand. For many New Zealanders, trusts have played an important role in long-term asset management and succession planning.

Over the past several years, the New Zealand Law Commission has undertaken a detailed review of the law regulating how trusts operate currently and what changes could be made to bring the legislation into the 21st century. Following the Commission’s recommendations, the Government has passed the Trusts Act 2019, which will come into force on 30 January 2021.

The main purposes of the new legislation are to embody in one statute principles that have been established by over 60 years of case law and to modernise trust structures to reflect the current environment in which we manage our assets. Once the new Act comes into force, it will apply to all trusts whether they are in existence now or created in the future.

The new Act contains a large number of changes, but those which are likely to have the largest impact can be broadly broken down into 3 categories:

  • the duties of trustees;
  • the rights of beneficiaries:
  • the way disputes are resolved.

To read more click here.  

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