MinterEllisonRuddWatts : Everything you need to know

MinterEllisonRuddWatts: Everything you need to know
Founded: 1880
Types of services: Legal
Offices: Auckland, Wellington
Employees: 1,700+

MinterEllisonRuddWatts is a New Zealand law firm with 15 offices across New Zealand, Australia, Asia and the United Kingdom, with its history dating back to the 1880s.

The firm that would eventually become MinterEllisonRuddWatts began as Stewart Johnston Campbell Drummond & Co in the late 19th century, becoming Rudd & Garland in 1938 when co-founders Jack Garland and Laurie Rudd joined forces to form the practice.

The firm grew and evolved over the next 50 years, eventually becoming Rudd Watts & Stone in 1984 through the merger of three law firms – Rudd Garland Horrocks Stewart Johnson in Auckland, and Stone & Co and Watts & Patterson in Wellington. This created the first New Zealand ‘mega-firm’ with a significant presence across both Auckland and Wellington.

The firm became MinterEllisonRuddWatts on September 01, 2001, with a celebration at the National Portrait Gallery to mark its evolution. In 2011, it formed an alliance with Christchurch law firm Lane Neave to help service clients involved with the reconstruction of Christchurch following the 2011 earthquakes.

Today MinterEllisonRuddWatts is one of the largest legal groups across Australia and New Zealand and one of the largest in the world, with its practice spanning five countries across three continents.

The firm’s insurance practice deals with major insurers and brokers, government entities, companies and individuals, and advises on various ‘front end’ needs as well as complex and high-value litigation. It is also involved in drafting new policy for major insurance, cyber insurance and warranty insurance claims.

MinterEllisonRuddWatts in the news
2001: MinterEllisonRuddWatts as it is today is formed.

2004: MinterEllisonRuddWatts appoints Russell Hay as CEO, partner Chris Allan is appointed as a Judge of the High Court.

2008: Mark Weenink becomes Managing Partner, replacing CEO Russell Hay.

2011: MinterEllisonRuddWatts forms an alliance with Christchurch firm Lane Neave.

2014: MinterEllisonRuddWatts marks 30 years since the joining of three firms to create the new group.

2018: Andrew Poole appointed as Chief Executive.

2019: MinterEllisonRuddWatts is ranked Tier 1 across 11 practice areas in the 2019 Legal 500 Asia Pacific guide.

Key people as of 2019

Andrew Poole – Chief Executive
Poole takes care of the firm’s business and professional responsibilities, having previously spent time at law firms Kensington Swan, Chapman Tripp and CMS Cameron McKenna in London, UK. He has also led projects for the NEXT Foundation, and the Rotoroa Island Trust.

Andrew Horne – Partner
Horne specialises in dispute resolution, and leads the firm’s insurance practice. He has significant experience managing complex disputes, including taking cases to trial and resolving disputes through mediation. Horne started his career as an associate lawyer in MinterEllisonRuddWatts’ dispute resolution team, and also spent nine years with Clifford Chance in London.

Kara Daly – Special Counsel, Financial Services
Daly has over 25 years’ experience as a commercial, banking, financial services, securities and insurance lawyer. Her current areas of expertise include legal issues around insurance law, financial services regulation and general commercial law.

MinterEllisonRuddWatts currently supports three projects through a combination of pro bono, community programmes, volunteer support and sponsorship: Mothers Project, Homework HELP Club and HelpTank.

It holds an annual Fundraising Month, and has previously raised over $8,000 for The Neonatal Trust and over $20,000 for the Child Action Poverty Group.

MinterEllisonRuddWatts is also involved in a number of diversity and inclusion initiatives, and has signed up for a framework on gender and ethnicity representation within its firm.

MinterEllisonRuddWatts : In the news