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Know-How Legal Workflow

Civil litigation

New, smart and intuitive step by step guidance you can rely on.

Civil Litigation Workflow and Precedents

Civil Litigation Know-How is designed to provide litigators with step by step information in the form of easy to follow modules about practice, procedure and the various tasks that lawyers involved in civil litigation cases need to complete.

In this first release, Civil Litigation Know-How covers the steps that need to be taken by lawyers when they are:

  1. Considering whether a case should be litigated;
  2. Preparing a case for civil litigation;
  3. Dealing with the case management process;
  4. Preparing for and running short trials or simplified trials in the District Courts;
  5. Preparing for and running summary judgment applications in the High Court or District Courts;
  6. Enforcing judgments of the District Courts;
  7. Appealing against judgments of the District Courts.

The modules are designed to be used by those new to civil litigation, non–specialist lawyers who occasionally undertake civil litigation, senior litigators who wish to delegate various litigation tasks to more junior practitioners, and experienced practitioners who need to refresh their memories about aspects of civil litigation that they have not dealt with for a while.

Following this initial release, additional workflows will continue to be added to Civil Litigation Know-How with the objective of providing users with a complete suite of modules covering every major aspect of civil litigation practice and process.

Our Expert Authors

Civil Litigation General Editor

Roderick Joyce QSO, QC

Following two partnerships in law firms, Rod commenced practice as a barrister sole in 1975. He was appointed Queen's Counsel 1985. He served as Judge of the District Courts of New Zealand from 1993 until 2014. 

Before his service as a judge, he appeared in a wide range of civil (and criminal) cases at all court levels in New Zealand, and before the Privy Council in London.

He has been actively involved in legal education for the last 20 years. He is currently an Honorary Academic and Teaching Fellow (lecturing in Civil Procedure) at the University of Auckland School of Law; a Continuing Legal Education instructor with the New Zealand Law Society, and Assistant Editor of Thomson Reuters Journal of Civil Litigation and Practice (Australia).

In 2013 he was made a Companion of the Queen's Service Order for services to the judiciary.

Civil Litigation Expert Authors

Douglas Ewen

Douglas is the architect of the Civil Litigation workflow steps and author of the expert guidance that accompanies each step. Douglas has practiced as a barrister since 1996. His work varies from human rights cases and judicial review to criminal jury trials and appeals.

Prior to post-admission legal practice, he worked as an outdoor clerk and then litigation legal executive for 4½ years in both London and New Zealand, in both the private and public sectors.

Starting at very much the bottom of the legal ladder, the work was an invaluable introduction to the nuts and bolts of actually getting things done in the court environment. This is best typified by his experiences on the first day on the job as an outdoor clerk in London in 1988. Douglas found himself, without being told by his employer that this might happen, making an application in front of a Queen’s Bench Division Master, without that much of an idea what a Master was, let alone what the application was about. With the kind assistance of registry staff and an uncommonly patient Master, the application succeeded.

For Douglas, the experience was both salutary and transformative. It was immediately apparent to him that, in moving a case forward (and surviving the experience), knowledge of the court's rules and practices was at least as important as substantive law, especially in dealings with the registry and its staff. Knowledge of the rules and having a good working relationship with court staff simply makes the job easier.

These early experiences led to one of Douglas’s abiding interests and subsequent specialisation in matters of procedure, civil and criminal. Pleading practice, a field replete with technical requirements, is an area of particular interest and research. Douglas has been involved in efforts to innovate the way civil pleadings are presented through use of merged pleadings, in an effort to simplify and clarify issues in a case.

Douglas runs a mixed civil and criminal practice, in the High Court and District Courts. Whilst formerly running a general civil caseload, these days through choice the civil litigation side of his practice concentrates on human rights cases, with a particular focus on wrongful detention cases.

Douglas has also lectured at Victoria University, School of Law, in advanced procedure, and was appointed as a member of the Legal Aid Review Panel by the Attorney-General, until its disestablishment in 2011.

Hayden Wilson & Helen Brown, Kensington Swan

Kensington Swan are the authors of the Brookers Civil Litigation Precedents on Westlaw NZ which are an integral part of the Civil Litigation Know-How solution.

The expertly drafted precedents, together with a comprehensive collection of prescribed forms, are extensively referenced, with links, from the steps in the Civil Litigation workflow.

Other useful and practical supplementary material and commentary that accompanies the Civil Litigation Precedents are also referenced in the Workflow steps, and the commentary and all forms and precedents are extensively linked to Civil Procedure - District Courts & Tribunals, McGechan on Procedure and Procedure Reports of New Zealand, allowing subscribers to those products to instantly access a particular case or more detailed commentary.

Hayden Wilson and Helen Brown also worked with Thomson Reuters to help architect the Summary Judgment module of the workflow.

Kensington Swan has skilled advocates and is experienced in all aspects of dispute resolution. They regularly appear in all jurisdictions including the District Court, High Court, Court of Appeal and specialist tribunals and courts.

Hayden Wilson (Partner)

Hayden heads Kensington Swan's Wellington-based Government and Regulatory team.

He is an experienced litigator and has acted for a number of organisations in both the public and private sector in dispute resolution. Hayden has appeared in the Court of Appeal, the High Court, and the District Court. He has also appeared before a number of administrative tribunals.

Hayden provides advice to organisations in both the public and private sectors on a wide range of issues involving regulatory environments, competition law, administrative law and dispute resolution.

Helen Brown (Senior Associate)

Helen is a Senior Associate in the litigation, public law, and construction teams at Kensington Swan

She has vast experience in general litigation, including a particular interest in the medico-legal field. Helen regularly advises clients on dispute resolution strategies and has appeared in the District Court, High Court, Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal, and the Weathertight Homes Tribunal.

Ready to try out the Know-How Workflow?

Contact us today to request a free trial.