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Otago Branch

The Otago branch of the New Zealand Law Society had its beginnings on 7 June 1879 when the Law Society of the District of Otago and Southland was founded. This became the Otago branch of the Law Society on 1 February 2009.

Governance is by an elected Branch Council, consisting of the branch President, the Vice-President and ten Council members. The President, Jo Hambleton represents the branch on the New Zealand Law Society's Council. 

The branch functions include:

  • representing and serving the interests of local Law Society members; 
  • upholding the fundamental obligations imposed by the Lawyers and Conveyancers Act 2006 on lawyers who provide regulated services;
  • attending to representative functions, including promoting collegiality within the branch;
  • assisting and promoting law reform.


The Otago branch area includes the centres of Alexandra, Balclutha, Cromwell, Dunedin, Heriot, Kurow, Lawrence, Milton, Mosgiel, Oamaru, Otematata, Palmerston, Port Chalmers, Queenstown, Ranfurly, Roxburgh, Twizel, Waikouaiti and Wanaka.

Lawyers in Practice

At 18 July 2016 there were 420 practising lawyers in the Otago branch area. This was 3.5% of all New Zealand-based lawyers. Of these lawyers, 5 (1.2%) had been in practice for over 50 years, 34 (8.1%) for 40 to 49 years, 66 (15.7%) for 30 to 39 years, 95 (22.6%) for 20 to 29 years, 115 (27.4%) for 10 to 19 years, and 105 (25.0%) for less than 10 years.

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Last updated on the 1st August 2019