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David Kearney

Chief Executive Partner

About David

David Kearney is Chief Executive Partner of Wotton + Kearney (W+K), co-founded in 2002 as the first Australian law firm with a sole focus on insurance. Having practised for over 25 years in most classes of commercial insurance, he continues to lead the firm’s significant growth from one office of six lawyers at inception, to over 140 lawyers across six offices in Australia and New Zealand today.

With a focus on leading the firm as it responds to a transforming insurance industry, David was integral in the conception and development of a new and innovative legal services model Legalign Global, launched to the global insurance market in 2017. Legalign Global is an alliance of four of the world’s foremost insurance law firms developed in response to globalisation, working to a common Client Services Charter.

Recognised internationally in the industry for his expertise, David has been ranked as the only Eminent Practitioner in insurance law by Chambers Asia Pacific in 2016, 2017 and 2018. Further, Legal 500 Asia Pacific has consistently rated David as a Leading Individual.

This year, Insurance Business Magazine included David in their highly regarded annual list of key influencers in the sector. As testament, David is regularly called upon by the legal and insurance media to comment on issues affecting these industries. He co-authored the Australian chapter for various editions of the “International Comparative Legal Guide to Insurance and Reinsurance.”

David was integral to the development of, and plays an active role in, the firm’s Pro Bono and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program, Community Footprint. He has travelled to both Kenya and Cambodia in support of W+K’s CSR program.

Areas of Expertise

  • Insurance Coverage and Defence (all classes)
  • Insurance Industry thought leadership
  • Law firm strategy
  • Law firm leadership

David's Experience

Professional Affiliations



  • Eminent Practitioner in insurance law Chambers and Partners, Asia-Pacific, 2016
  • Eminent Practitioner in insurance law Chambers and Partners Asia-Pacific, 2015
  • Leading individual in insurance law Best Lawyers Australia, 2015
  • Leading individual in insurance law The Legal 500 Asia-Pacific, 2015
  • Leading individual in insurance law The Legal 500 Asia-Pacific, 2014
  • Leading Lawyer – Chambers and Partners, Asia-Pacific, 2014