Litigation & Local Government


Peter Crombie



Supporting Content

Phone: +64 7 927 0516



Bachelor of Laws, University of Otago

After initially practising in Wellington I joined Cooney Lees Morgan in 1987. I became a partner in in the firm in 1992 and lead the civil and commercial litigation and employment law teams. 

I specialise in resolving wide-ranging business disputes, including shareholder disputes, partnership disputes, inter-company disputes, contract claims, negligence and other tort claims, property and land claims, employment disputes, and claims against estates.

I gain a great deal of satisfaction from working hard for clients to achieve the outcome they want when they become involved in a dispute, whether in their business or in their personal affairs.

I’m a strong advocate of alternative dispute resolution, particularly mediation, as this often provides the most cost effective and speedy resolution of wide-ranging business and property disputes. I’ve been on LEADR’s (now called ALPMA) approved panel of mediators since 1996.

Sometimes disputes cannot be resolved without going to court. In these cases I act as counsel for clients in the Courts, including at appellate level and in arbitrations.

I also accept appointments as an arbitrator having on occasions been appointed as sole Arbitrator by both the New Zealand Law Society, Waikato BOP sub-branch, and by other lawyers whose clients have been involved in commercial disputes.

My wife, Pip, and I have two teenage children. We enjoy the Bay of Plenty lifestyle.

Between 2004 and 2011 I was on the Board of Trustees at St Mary’s Primary School in Tauranga, the last six years of which I was the Board Chairperson.

I enjoy mountain biking, snow skiing, and golf.

Examples of work:

  • Counsel for a party involved in a Royal Commission of Inquiry in Australia into the Australian Wheat Board’s involvement in the United Nations Oil-for-Food programme with Iraq.

  • Counsel in both the High Court and Court of Appeal for a Consultant to the dairy industry sued in negligence as part of a class action claim for advice given to 1200 shareholders of a dairy company on the merits of a merger proposal with another dairy company.

  • Counsel for a Local Authority in both the High Court and Court of Appeal sued in negligence for an alleged breach of its duty when processing a resource consent application under the Resource Management Act.

  • Counsel for a local authority in an arbitration claim over compensation for land taken for public roading.

  • Counsel in a number of land compensation claims to the Land Valuation Tribunal under the Public Works Act

  • Counsel for significant participants involved in the kiwifruit industry who were sued in various contractual and tortious disputes, including a challenge by Turners & Growers against Zespri’s 'single desk' export structure that exists under the Kiwifruit Industry Restructuring Act 1999.

Areas of expertise

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