We are highly regarded as:-
- Leading legal services provider in servicing overseas companies and wealthy individuals mainly migrating to or investing in New Zealand
- Extremely conscious of the important of cost control by keeping our clients out of the court rooms, otherwise ensuring them to be
represented by the best litigation team
- Highly business oriented by assuming major partnership role to companies and corporates in risk management by providing innovative,
timely and practical solutions
- A gateway of Asian investment to New Zealand by providing the necessary political or public law representative in the local and
- We are committed to latest technologies; ensuring that our clients receive personal attention; and our qualified lawyers keeping up to
date of the laws, delivering sound and practical solutions
As required by the New Zealand Law Society, we shall submit our letter of engagement for your perusal and approval prior to our engagement together with the following our standard terms of engagement and information for clients:
Standard terms of engagement
These Standard Terms of Engagement (“Terms”) apply in respect of all work carried out by us for you, except to the extent that we otherwise agree with you in writing.
1.1 The services which we are to provide for you are outlined in our engagement letter.
2. Limits of Engagement
We reserve our unfettered right to cease to act if:-
(i) Adequate or timely instructions are not available for whatever reason;
(ii) Your interviewing acts render us incapable of performing our tasks within our control;
(iii) Any instruction causing us to breach any professional obligations or ethics or simply illegal;
(iv) You fail to pay our fee or disbursement as agreed
If we so decided to cease acting, we shall provide you seven days written notice and endeavour to assist you to engage another lawyer. We reserve our right to charge you for the work which we have completed on the instruction that you have provided up to that time. We will charge for the time spent on the work at the hourly rates set out in our letter of engagement.
(a) The fees which we will charge or the manner in which they will be arrived at, are set out in our engagement letter.
(b) If the engagement letter specifies a fixed fee, we will charge this for the agreed scope of our services, provided that your instruction is accurate and correct and provided to us in timely fashion. Work which falls outside that scope will be charged on an hourly rate basis. We will advise you as soon as reasonably practicable if it becomes necessary for us to provide services outside the agreed scope and if requested, give you an estimate of the likely amount of the further costs.
(c) Where our fees are calculated on an hourly basis, the hourly rates are set out in our engagement letter. The difference in those rates reflects the experience and specialisation of our professional staff. Time spent is recorded in 10 minute units, with time rounded up to the next unit of 10 minutes.
3.2 Disbursements and Expenses: If providing services we may incur disbursements or have to make payments to third parties on your behalf. These will be included in our invoice to you when the expense is incurred. We may require an advance payment of disbursements or expenses which we will be incurring on your behalf. In the event that we pay a disbursement for you, an 8% handling fee will be charged, unless being specified in our letter of engagement.
3.3 GST (if any): Is payable by you on our fees and charges at 15%.
3.4 Invoices: We will send interim invoices to you, usually monthly and on completion of this matter, or termination of our engagement. We may also send an invoice when we incur a significant expense.
3.5 Payment: Invoices are payable within 14 days of the date of the invoice, unless alternative arrangements have been made with us. We may require interest to be paid on any amount which is more than 7 days overdue. Interest will be calculated at the rate of 4% above our firm’s main trading bank’s 90 days bank bill buy rate as at the close of business on the date payment has become due. You shall also be liable for collection fees (plus our administration fee of $50.00) if you do not pay within the specified time. We also reserve our right to advise (without further notice to you) your failure in paying our outstanding fees or disbursement, to any credit agency, which may affect adversely your credit rating.
3.6 Security: We may ask you to prepay amounts to us, or to provide security for our fees and expenses. You authorise us to:
(a) To debit against amounts prepaid by you; and
(b) To deduct from any funds held on your behalf in our trust account any fees, expenses or disbursements for which we have provided an invoice.
3.7 Third Parties: Although you may expect to be reimbursed by a third party for our fees and expenses, and although our invoices may at your request or with your approval be directed to a third party, nevertheless, you remain responsible for payment to us if the third party fails to pay us. It is not our duty to liaise and chase up payment from the third party.
4.1 We will hold in confidence all information concerning you or your affairs that we acquire during the course of acting for you. We will not disclose any of this information to any other person except:
(a) To the extent necessary or desirable to enable us to carry out your instructions; or
(b) To the extent required by law or by the Law Society’s Rules of Conduct and Client Care for Lawyers.
4.2 Confidential information concerning you will as far as practicable be made available only to those within our firm who are providing legal services for you.
4.3 We will of course, not disclose to you confidential information which we have in relation to any other client.
5.1 You may terminate or retainer at any time.
5.2 We may terminate our retainer in any of the circumstances set our in the Law Society’s Rules of Conduct and
Client Care for Lawyers.
5.3 If our retainer is terminated you must pay us all fees due up to the date of termination and all expenses
incurred up to that date.
6. Retention of Files and Documents
6.1 You authorise us (without further reference to you) to destroy all files and documents for this matter (other than any documents that we hold in safe custody for you) 7 years after our engagement ends, or earlier if we have converted those files and documents to electronic format. If you uplift the files or require photocopy of the same, we shall charge you for the photocopying fee, fee for retrieving off site and other expenses incurred. The files or documents to be uplifted will only be released to you upon the full payment of the said expenses in this clause and any outstanding fees or disbursements owed to us. We also reserve our right to keep copy of the files and documents.
7. Conflicts of Interest
7.1 We have procedures in place to identify and respond to conflicts of interest. If a conflict of interest arises we will advise you of this and follow the requirements and procedures set out in the Law Society’s Rules of Conduct and Client Care for Lawyers.
8. Duty of Care
8.1 Our duty of care is to you and not to any other person. Before any other person may rely on our advice, we must expressly agree to this.
9. Trust Account
9.1 We maintain a trust account for all funds which we receive from client’s (except monies received for payment of our invoices). If we are holding significant funds on your behalf we will normally lodge those funds on interest bearing deposit with ASB bank. In that case we will charge an administration fee of 5% of the interest derived. We do not provide any financial advice in investing the funds and therefore it is not our responsibility to ensure an optimum return. If such arrangement is not satisfactory to you, you need to advise us immediately. If you instruct us to send funds to overseas, please ensure that you have a New Zealand dollar account with the receiving bank. Though we shall exercise proper care, we shall not be responsible for any unilateral act on the part of the banks to convert the funds into other currency and or deducting their fee/charges.
10. Limitation on extent of our obligations on Liability
10.1 Please take notice that any liability legal or equitable, you may be able to claim from us shall be limited to 3 times the total of the fee you have paid arising from your instruction. If it is not acceptable, please provide your written notice to us immediately but not later than 3 working days.
11.1 These Terms apply to any current engagement and also any further engagement, whether or not we send you another
copy of them.
11.2 We are entitled to change these Terms from time to time, in which case we will send you amended Terms.
11.3 Our relationship with you is governed by New Zealand Law and New Zealand courts have non-exclusive jurisdiction.
11.4 English is the language to be used in respect of all work carried out by us for you. We are not responsible for any translation or interpretation carried out by our staff who may be able to communicate in your native language (with or without fee being charged). You are required to fully satisfy yourself of your understanding of the English language to be used in respect of all work carried out by us for you.
information for clients
Set out below is the information required by the Rules of Conduct and Client Care for Lawyers of the New Zealand Law Society (“Law Society”).
1. Fees: The basis on which fees will be charged it set out in our letter of engagement. When payment of fees is to be made is set out in our Standard Terms of Engagement. We may deduct from any funds held on your behalf in our trust account for fees, expenses or disbursements for which we have provided an invoice
2. Professional Indemnity Insurance: We hold professional indemnity insurance that meets or exceeds the minimum standards specified by the Law Society. We will provide you with particulars of the minimum standards upon request.
3. Lawyers Fidelity Fund: The Law Society maintains the Lawyers Fidelity Fund for the purpose of providing clients of lawyers with protection against pecuniary loss arising from theft by lawyers. The maximum amount payable to the Fidelity Fund by way of compensation to an individual claimant is limited to $100,000.00. Except in certain circumstances specified in the Lawyers & Conveyancers Act 2006 the Fidelity Fund does not cover a client for any loss relating to money that a lawyer is instructed to invest on behalf of the client.
4. Complaints: We maintain a procedure for handling complaints by clients, designed to ensure that a complaint is dealt with promptly and fairly.
If you have a complaint about our services or charges, you may refer your complaint to the person in our firm who has overall responsibility for your work.
l If you do not wish to refer your complaint to that person, or you are not satisfied with the person’s response to your complaint, the Law Society also maintains a complaints service and you are able to make a complaint to that service. To do so you should contact the Law Society. The postal address is P O BOX 5041, Lambton Quay, Wellington and Telephone: (04) 472 7837.
5. Persons Responsible for Work: The names and status of the person or persons who will have the general carriage of or overall responsibility for the services we provide for you are set out in our letter of engagement.
6. Client Care and Service: The Law Society client care and service information is set out below:
Whatever legal services your lawyer is providing, he or she must:
l Act competently, in a timely way, and in accordance with instructions received and arrangements made.
l Protect and promote your interests and act for you free from compromising influences or loyalties.
l Discuss with you your objectives and how they should best be achieved.
l Provide you with information about work to be done, who will do it and the way the services will be provided.
l Charge you a fee that is fair and reasonable and let you know how and when you will be billed.
l Give you clear information and advice.
l Protect your privacy and ensure appropriate confidentiality.
l Treat you fairly, respectfully and without discrimination.
l Keep you informed about the work being done and advise you when it is completed.
l Let you know how to make a complaint and deal with any complaint promptly and fairly.
The obligations lawyers owe to clients are described in the Rules Conduct and Client Care for Lawyers. Those obligations are subject to other overriding duties, including duties to the courts and to the justice system.
If you have any questions, please visit www.lawsociety.org.nz or call 0800261801.
7. Limitations on extent of our Obligations or Liability: Any limitations on the extent of our obligations to you or any limitation or exclusion of liability are set out in our letter of engagement.