John Katz QC


Telephone: +64 9 358 5551

Mobile: +64 27 474 8144

[email protected]

Post: PO Box 1900, Shortland Street, Auckland, New Zealand 1140.

John has been in practice for 40 years and brings a national and international reputation to his work as a commercial litigator. Formerly a partner at Simpson Grierson, John began practice as a barrister sole specialising in intellectual property litigation in 1991. He was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1998.

His work as a writer on intellectual property matters has brought him particular note, with many published works in the area including contributing to the Laws of New Zealand and editing the New Zealand Intellectual Property Journal to which he regularly contributes. In 2011, he wrote Search Orders published by LexisNexis. In 2000 John was appointed panelist by the World Intellectual Property Organisation in Geneva. He also acts regularly in professional disciplinary matters. John has maintained an active academic career, primarily as a lecturer at the University of Auckland. He has been admitted to practice in New Zealand, Australia (Victoria) and admitted (ad hoc) in Hong Kong, East Malaysia, Fiji, and the Cook Islands.

John’s current areas of specialisation include intellectual property litigation, general commercial litigation, pre-emptive rewards including search and freezing orders.  He also has a substantial practice in professional disciplinary matters with emphasis on lawyers’ disciplinary proceedings.

Recent and Notable Cases

A list can be supplied upon request.

Qualifications and Career


  •  University of Auckland: LL.B (Hons)
  • COP: Copyright and Intellectual Property


  • 1998 Appointed Queen’s Counsel
  • 1991 Commenced practice as a Barrister specialising in intellectual property litigation
  • 1985 Partner in merged firm of Simpson Grierson Butler White
  • 1979 Admitted to partnership of Butler White & Hanna
  • 1976 – 1979 Employed as litigation solicitor by Messrs Butler White & Hanna
  • 1975 – 1976 Employed for one year as legal advisor to Slater Walker Finance Limited, later known as First Fortune Finance Limited in Croydon, Surrey, England
  • 1973 – 1974 Employed by Messrs Kensington Haynes & White, Solicitors of Auckland,
    in litigation
  • 1972 Admitted to the New Zealand Bar
  • 1971 – 1973 Employed by Messrs McElroy Duncan & Preddle, Solicitors of Auckland for
    18 months initially in conveyancing/commercial work and then litigation


  • 2011 Author: Search Orders published by Lexis Nexis
  • 1995 – current Joint Editor and regular contributor, New Zealand Intellectual Property Journal,
    Lexis Nexis
  • 1991 – 1995 Occasional contributor European Intellectual Property Review, Oxford, England
  • 2000 Appointed panellist by WIPO (Geneva), resolution of Domain Name Disputes
  • 1998 – 2000 Chairperson New Zealand branch, IPSANZ
  • 1991 – 1998 Auckland University, Department of Commercial Law, visiting specialist lecturer
    and part-time lecturer in intellectual property, seminar contributor master’s course
  • 1990 – 1998 Auckland University, Faculty of Law – visiting specialist lecturer in advanced torts
    and media law and dissertation/thesis supervisor and examiner
  • 1997 Consultant Editor to Butterworths of New Zealand Ltd for Frankel & McLay:
    Intellectual Property Law in New Zealand
  • 1997 Editorial Board, New Zealand Intellectual Property Journal
  • 1995 Author: Intellectual Property: Confidential Information Laws of New Zealand, Butterworths
  • 1980 Auckland University, Faculty of Law – part-time lecturer in civil procedure
  • 1973 – 1974 Auckland Technical Institute – part-time lecturer in legal system

• Admitted to Practice New Zealand and Australia (Victoria)
• Admitted (ad hoc) East Malaysia, Fiji, Cook Islands, Hong Kong