I grew up in Nelson and attended Nelson College for Girls.
I studied for my Bachelor of Laws at the University of Canterbury and worked as a summer clerk at Zindels before my final year of study. I started at the firm permanently in February 2016 and was admitted to the bar in September 2016. It was a very happy return to Nelson for me.
During my time as a summer clerk I researched the country’s legal aid system and became interested in the issue of access to justice. I am convinced that a robust legal aid system is essential to ensure that everyone, from all walks of life, can access remedies and representation when legal issues come up. This can happen in many different areas of life – being accused of committing a crime, separating from a spouse/partner or being dismissed from employment, to name a few examples. They’re big issues for people and if there isn’t legal help then unfairness about them can alter the course of lives.
Criminal and civil litigation are my main areas of interest at present but I am assisting with a number of different topics here. I’m conscious that the different aspects of the law may merge at times and I want to keep my horizons wide so long as I can be efficient in my work.
When looking at a legal dispute, I start from the perspective that (by and large) there will be some remedy in the law to provide a fair outcome and I go from there. Sometimes a “fair outcome” won’t come from the agency or person you first think of. For example, there are extremely limited circumstances in which you can be awarded civil damages in New Zealand for personal injury, but we can work with you regarding your ACC compensation. We try to explore all of the possibilities from where you might get some redress.
I enjoy the advocacy aspect of the law and I find it is a privilege to act for clients in trying to level the playing field if they feel hard done by. I know that my colleagues here think and act the same way.