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Carter Pearce is a barrister employed by Philip Skelton QC and Kelly Quinn.

Education

BA - University of Canterbury

LLB - University of Auckland

Bio

Carter is a general commercial and civil litigator. He acts for parties in a wide range of civil disputes and has achieved successful results at every level of the New Zealand court system including the Supreme Court.

Carter has a particular interest and experience in class actions.  He currently acts as junior counsel for the plaintiffs in Ross v Southern Response, a landmark opt-out class action against a government insurer, and Livingstone v CBL Corp, a shareholder class action against a listed company now in liquidation.

Carter commenced practice as a barrister sole and joined Bankside Chambers as a member in February 2021, having previously been employed as a junior barrister by Philip Skelton QC and Kelly Quinn.

At Auckland law school, Carter won the Stout Shield mooting competition and the national mooting competition, and represented New Zealand at the 2016 Philip C Jessup International Law Moot in Washington DC.

Work Highlights

Ross v Southern Response Earthquake Services Ltd [2018] NZHC 3288, (2019) 25 PRNZ 33 (CA), [2020] NZSC 126

Carter acts as junior counsel for the plaintiffs, alongside Philip Skelton QC and Kelly Quinn, in a consumer class action on behalf of former Southern Response policyholders.  Southern Response allegedly misled policyholders about the estimated cost to repair/rebuild their earthquake-damaged homes, inducing policyholders to settle their insurance claims for less than they were entitled to. In the Court of Appeal, leave was granted to bring the first “opt-out” class action in New Zealand.  Southern Response’s appeal against that decision was dismissed by the Supreme Court in November 2020.

Dodds v Southern Response Earthquake Services Ltd [2019] 3 NZLR 826 (HC), [2020] NZCA 395

Carter assisted with a successful trial against Southern Response, in which the insurer was found to have misled the plaintiffs as to the estimated cost to rebuild their earthquake-damaged home, inducing them to settle their insurance claims for considerably less than they were entitled to. e defendant was held liable for misrepresentation and misleading and deceptive conduct. A “full and final settlement” clause was held not to bar the plaintiffs’ claims.  The insurer’s appeal was dismissed by the Court of Appeal.

Livingstone v CBL Corporation Ltd

Carter acts as junior counsel for the plaintiffs, alongside Philip Skelton QC and Samuel Jeffs in a shareholder class action against an NZX and ASX listed company (now in liquidation) for alleged breach of IPO and continuous disclosure provisions in the Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013.

Shabor Ltd v Graham [2017] NZHC 3146, (2020) 21 NZCPR 440 (HC)

Carter appeared as junior counsel for the plaintiff, alongside Kelly Quinn, in a commercial deception case involving the carrying capacity of a large farm. The plaintiff successfully defended summary judgment and strike out applications in 2017. A trial in 2019 resulted in findings of misrepresentation and misleading and deceptive conduct, but the plaintiff’s claims were barred by a non-reliance clause in the sale and purchase agreement.  The plaintiff’s appeal will be heard in May 2021.

Johnson & Graham v Barry Park Investments Ltd (2019) 20 NZCPR 562 (HC), (2019) 20 NZCPR 680 (CA)

Carter appeared as junior counsel, alongside Kelly Quinn, in a trial concerning an ancient stone wall that supported the defendant’s house but encroached significantly into the plaintiffs’ property, restricting vehicular access. Successful judgment for the plaintiffs in trespass and under the Property Law Act, with orders requiring the defendant to remove the encroachment. The defendant’s appeal was largely dismissed by the Court of Appeal.

Hynds Pipe Systems Ltd v Forsyth (2017) 14 NZELR 740 (Full EmpC)

Carter acted for an employer against a former employee suspected of retaining confidential information after jumping ship to a major competitor.  The employer obtained an Anton Piller order, with which the employee refused to comply, and the employer sought contempt orders. The defendant argued that the Employment Court had no powers to punish breach of a search order.  The employer successfully obtained a Full Court judgment holding that the court has inherent power to punish contempt of its orders.

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