James is a Senior Associate in Wotton + Kearney’s Auckland office specialising in dispute resolution in the insurance and reinsurance sector. He has experience in most classes of business, including financial institutions, professional indemnity, casualty, construction, property and commercial general liability (CGL).

James has expertise in handling large E&O and casualty claims and advising primary, umbrella and pure excess insurers. He is experienced in international arbitration, both ad hoc and in accordance with various rules, including UNCITRAL.

  • Assisting domestic and offshore insurers in relation to the Canterbury earthquakes with their exposure to property and business interruptions losses arising out of the earthquakes, including handling litigation in earthquake list.
  • AAI Limited v 92 Lichfield Limited (In Receivership and In Liquidation) [2015] NZCA  559: junior  counsel for AAI Ltd  in Court of Appeal hearing concerning the existence of a settlement agreement in respect of a commercial building damaged in the Christchurch earthquakes.
  • Acting for an insurance broker on a claim arising out of the placement of material damage and business interruption cover for a waste recycling plant.
  • Defending solicitors, barristers and valuers in professional disciplinary proceedings.
  • Defending architects, project managers, real estates, insurance brokers, lawyers and accountants in civil proceedings.
  • Acting for excess insurers on a blended E&O/D&O programme relating to their exposure to claims arising out of the Spitzer broker compensation / anti-trust litigation in the United States.
  • Advising on coverage under an E&O/Official Investigations policy on a large claim arising out of mis-selling.
  • Defending various claims made directly against insurers under s9 of the Law Reform Act 1936, in particular relating to the defective construction of residential buildings.
Areas of Expertise
  • Construction + Contract Works
  • Industrial Special Risks
  • Management Liability
  • Professional Liability

Industry Representation
  • Construction + Infrastructure
  • Financial Institutions + Services
  • Industrial + Commercial Property
  • Professions + Business Services

Professional Affiliations
  • New Zealand Insurance Law Association