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Frequently Asked Questions

I am an in-house lawyer employed by a Controlling Entity (excluding Crown, Crown Organisation or statutory officer). Who may I give advice to?

Please see Example A (PDF 134Kb).

I am an in-house lawyer employed by a subsidiary of a Controlling Entity (excluding Crown, Crown Organisation or statutory officer). Who may I give advice to?

Please see Example B (PDF 133Kb).

I am an in-house lawyer employed by a subsidiary of a subsidiary of a Controlling Entity (excluding Crown, Crown Organisation or statutory officer). Who may I give advice to?

Please see Example C (PDF 83Kb).

The rules talk about an in-house lawyer being “engaged” by a controlling entity.  What does “engaged” mean in this context?

The term ‘engaged’ derives from Rule 15.1 RCCC which states that an in-house lawyer may be engaged under an employment agreement or a contract for services. Accordingly, ‘engaged’ has a broader meaning than ‘employed’ since a contract for services differs from an employment contract.
The important point is that whether a lawyer’s relationship with a non-lawyer is that of employer and employee, or a contractor under a contract for services, the lawyer is an in-house lawyer and is bound by all the rules in Chapter 15 RCCC.

I work for a district health board (DHB).  Will it be possible for me to provide legal services to another district health board?

A district health board is a Crown entity and accordingly a Crown organisation. A lawyer employed by a district health board is entitled to provide legal services to other district health boards.

Can I advise entities that are owned by the district health board (DHB) I am employed by?

Where three DHBs have 60% ownership in a trust (eg they own 30% each):
Although each district health board is a Crown entity and a Crown organisation, under the Rules it is a separate entity from other district health boards. A single district health board would need to have at least 50% control of a trust in order to enable an in-house lawyer employed by it to provide legal services to the trust.
Where three DHBs have joint ownership in a company (incorporated under the Companies Act):
Under the Crown Entities Act a company which is a multi-parent subsidiary of two or more Crown entities is deemed to be a Crown entity subsidiary. Further, in terms of section 7(1) of the Crown Entities Act, a Crown entity subsidiary is deemed to be a Crown entity.  This means that rule 15.2.4 would apply and permit shared services.  However, the multi-parent subsidiary must be a company and not some other entity, e.g. a trust, as otherwise it would not fall within the definition of a Crown entity subsidiary.

My employer is involved in a joint venture where we have equal (50/50) shares with another entity. Can I provide regulated services to the joint venture entity?

Yes, as the meaning of subsidiary includes “at least half” (see rule 15.2.5).

I work for a local authority and I have been asked to advise another local authority can I do this?

No, you cannot advise another local authority as it is not covered in the definition of Crown, Crown Organisation or statutory officer nor does it met the definition of subsidiary.

My employer is a District Health Board. We appoint 2 out of 8 trustees to an independent charitable trust can I advise the trust?

No. The charitable trust is an independent body and the Health Board has less than the necessary control of half the composition of the Board (see rule 15.2.5(a)).

Do I have to provide client care information to the non-employing entity?

Yes, see sample template.

I work for a subsidiary entity can I advise the parent company?

Yes, (see rule 15.2.4(b)).

I work for a parent company and have been asked to advise a subsidiary of a subsidiary can I do this?

Yes, (see rule 15.2.5).

Last updated on the 18th July 2016