Your desk or portable device


Recent decisions from the Court of Appeal (Erceg) and the Supreme Court (Clayton) have both changed and clarified key aspects of trust law in regard to the rights of beneficiaries to seek information from trustees, when assets held in trusts may be considered to be relationship property and what constitutes a nuptial settlement for the purposes of section 182 of the Family Proceedings Act 1980. This On Demand seminar looks at how the cases have changed the trust landscape as well as offering suggestions on how to adapt to, and deal with, the resulting developments.

Learning Outcomes

  • Learn more about trustees’ discretion to grant a beneficiary’s request for information and the effect on this discretion of a settlor’s desire for confidentiality. 
  • Gain an understanding on how the trustees’ discretion may differ in other contexts i.e. towards beneficiaries under a will trust or claimants under the Family Protection Act 1955 or the Law Reform (Testamentary Promises) Act 1949. 
  • Gain an understanding of when the Courts may consider trust powers to be relationship property and how the principles may be extended both within the family law context and outside it, for instance, in insolvency and creditor claims generally.
  • Gain insights into how practitioners may frame trust deeds to avoid unexpected consequences of the  Erceg and Clayton Judgments.

Who should view? 

Trust, family and property lawyers, litigators and all other lawyers who advise on trust matters.


Kate Davenport QC

Kate was admitted to the Bar in 1983 and became a Barrister sole in 1990.  Kate took Silk in 2013. Kate was admitted to the UK Bar by the Middle Temple in July 2015.  Kate was awarded NZ Lawyer Barrister of the Year Award in 2013.

Kate is a civil and commercial litigator with more than 23 years’ experience at the independent bar.  She is also a qualified mediator.  Kate practises primarily in civil and commercial litigation including cases involving contracts and torts, equity and trusts, insolvency and company law, land law, construction law, Relationship property and Health law.

Kate writes extensively in the area of Trust Law and is a contributing editor to LexisNexis Law of Trusts.

Kate is a former Vice President of the New Zealand Law Society and the New Zealand Bar Association.

Andrew Steele
Martelli McKegg

Andrew Steele has over 25 years' experience in civil and commercial litigation in New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Previously a partner at Chamberlains, Andrew became a partner with Martelli McKegg in 2006.  He is a New Zealand Law Society Costs Assessor and a member of the ADLS Civil Litigation Committee.

Andrew graduated with a B.Com in Auckland University and a LLB from Otago.  He was admitted to the High Court of New Zealand as a barrister and solicitor in 1988 and as a solicitor in England and Wales in 1992.  He has considerable experience in acting in estate claims and general civil litigation arising in the trust law and family law context, such as claims under the FPA, TPA, and more generally in equity, contract and tort.


Dennis Jenkin
Cowan Street Chambers