Session 2: Estate Disputes

Session ID: 183NZA09B
Date: Wednesday, 21 March 2018
Time: 02:00pm - 05:15pm
Venue: Stamford Plaza Auckland, Ground Floor, 22 - 26 Albert St, Auckland

Face to face


Standard $405.00

Also available as

WEB183NZA09B Live Web Seminar


Session Content

Date: Wednesday 21 March 2018
Time: 2.00pm to 5.15pm
Venue: Stamford Auckland, 22 - 26 Albert St Auckland

Attend and earn 3 CPD hours

Tell us if this recipe sounds familiar: mix together some questionable will drafting, complex executor and trustee issues, messy inheritance considerations and creditors hot on the trail of assets. Mix in a good sprinkling of bitter family resentment and heated disputes, and then watch it all explode. Basically, a recipe for disaster that your clients bring to a boil and then dumped in your lap. Avoid making a mistake that will prove costly for both you and your client by attending so that you can learn how to avoid problems that can and will blow up in your face.

Chair: Vanessa Bruton QC, O'Connell Chambers

Equitable Remedies in Wills and Estates Litigation

  • Equitable claims and their interaction with family provision applications
  • The how, when and where of constructive trusts, resulting trusts and proprietary estoppel
  • Other equitable remedies including removal of a fiduciary and account of profits

Presented by Jarrod Walker, Partner, Bell Gully

Family Protection Act and Recent Cases

  • Effect of the Property (Relationships) Act: Sands v O'Horgan
  • Unequal distribution of estate among children: Rule v Rule; Talbot v Talbot; Ormsby v Van Selm
  • Ill treatment or neglect by testator: Thomas v Burton
  • Claimant competing against surviving stepparent: Chambers v Chambers
  • Childhood abuse and estrangement: AB v RT

Presented by Stuart Cummings, Barrister, Surrey Chambers

Enforcing Promises: The Testamentary Promises Act
The Law Reform (Testamentary Promises) Act 1949 is a piece of legislation unique to New Zealand that makes "better provision for the enforcement of promises to make testamentary provision in return for services rendered". This presentation will provide practical guidance to lawyers when drafting wills to ensure they are less vulnerable to attack and also to lawyers advising clients in relation to bringing or defending a claim based on a promise

  • Overview of the Act and an analysis of recent decisions under this legislation
  • Bringing and defending claims under the Act, including procedural requirements and the role of an executor
  • Analysis of strategies when drafting wills and providing advice to testators regarding potential claims under the Act

Presented by Sally Morris, Partner and Georgia Angus, Senior Solicitor, Morris Legal

Learning Objectives:

  • Gain a key update on the Testamentary Promises Act
  • Catch up on the Family Protection Act and recent cases
  • Understand Testamentary Capacity, Knowledge and Approval, Undue Influence

Chair: Vanessa Bruton QC

Vanessa Bruton is an Auckland barrister, practising almost exclusively in trust and estate disputes, including relationship property disputes where trusts are involved. Her practice includes both domestic and international trust disputes where there is a New Zealand law or jurisdiction aspect. She is a member of STEP (Society for Trust and Estate Practitioners) and a frequent speaker at NZLS, ADLS and other seminars. She was leading counsel for the successful plaintiffs in Thurston v Thurston and Green v Green, and acted for the successful trustees in Thompson v Thompson. For more about Vanessa see

Jarrod Walker

Jarrod Walker is a partner in Bell Gully's tax and personal asset planning teams. Jarrod's tax practice involves provision of advice to a range of the firm's corporate, financial institution and personal clients. His tax experience is complemented by his involvement in the trusts / personal asset planning team where he advises clients on a variety of trust and asset planning matters. Jarrod is a member of the International Fiscal Association (IFA) and the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP).

Stuart Cummings

Stuart Cummings commenced practising law in 1979 as an old-fashioned "law clerk" while completing his law degree. He was admitted in May 1982 and has practised, in the earlier days, in a number of jurisdictions before specialising in Family Law in the late 1980s. Over the past 17 years that family law focus has further narrowed to a predominance of work in the relationship property area, trusts and the law affecting estates. Stuart has practiced as a Barrister sole since 1990.

Sally Morris

Sally Morris is the founding partner of Morris Legal. Sally is admitted as a barrister and solicitor in New Zealand, New South Wales and New York and has a master of laws degree from Columbia University in New York. Sally has an established reputation in the field of relationship property, trust and estate disputes. Sally has been published in the New Zealand Law Journal and the International STEP Journal with articles relating to the role of charities in estate disputes and the application of the Wills Act by the High Court. Sally regularly presents papers to industry conferences around New Zealand including recent presentations on the use of trusts to protect assets, the role of the independent trustee, challenges to estates and the implications of the recent Supreme Court decision of Clayton v Clayton in terms of asset protection following the end of a relationship. Sally was recognised in the 2016 NZ Lawyer 2016 Hotlist as "one to watch" and was a finalist for the Young Private Practice Lawyer of the Year at the 2016 New Zealand Law Awards. Sally was recently awarded Trust and Estate Litigation Lawyer of the Year in the Finance Monthly Law Awards 2017. Sally is a STEP Affiliate Member and has recently completed the STEP Advanced Diploma in Trusts and Estates.

Georgia Angus

Georgia Angus is a Senior Solicitor at Morris Legal. Georgia's experience includes advising private clients, charities and international and local trustee companies in relation to complex trust, estate and relationship property disputes. Georgia began her legal career at Russell McVeagh, a top-tier commercial law firm, before moving to focus exclusively on contentious relationship property, trust and estate matters. Georgia's commercial experience and training means she brings a pragmatic and strategic approach to private client matters. Georgia has been published in the New Zealand Law Journal with an article relating to the role of charities in estate claims. Georgia received her LLB and MusB from the University of Otago. Georgia is on the committee for the NZLS Auckland Young Lawyers and is a member of the Auckland Women Lawyers' Association; ICANZ Trust Special Interest Group; the Family Courts Association; and the New Zealand Animal Law Association.

Venue Details

Stamford Plaza Auckland

Ground Floor, 22 - 26 Albert St
Auckland 1010

Ph: 64 9 309 888


The Stamford Plaza Auckland is a short 5 minute walk from the main

train/bus station Britomart. There is onsite valet parking, charged at a rate

of NZ$45 per car. Alternatively there are numerous public car parks in the

area including Challenge House, 1/3 Wolfe Street.

Parking is not included in the registrartion fee and price is subject to


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"Very interesting and extremely well presented; speakers knew the area very well"

Delagte - Criminal Law Update, Auckland, March 2017






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