Law Commission appointments

  • Lianne Dalziel

Associate Justice Minister Lianne Dalziel today announced the appointments of Frances Joychild and Richard Clarke QC to the Law Commission.

The six-member Law Commission is an independent government-funded advisory body which reviews areas of the law that need updating, reforming or developing.

"The Law Commission provides high-quality, independent opinion and thus helps create informed debate on many public policy issues," said Lianne Dalziel.

"I welcome the appointment of Ms Joychild and Mr Clarke to the Law Commission. They have considerable experience in the areas of general civil and commercial law, as well as in the public policy process, and I am sure they will make a valuable contribution to the continued improvement of our laws."

Mr Clarke, who will work half time for the Law Commission, commenced practice as a barrister sole in 1999 and became Queen’s Counsel in June this year. Prior to practicing as a barrister sole, he spent six years as a Parliamentary Counsel and was then a partner in Chapman Tripp Sheffield Young for 13 years.

Mr Clarke has had considerable commercial experience, including government and corporate restructuring, companies and securities law and finance and superannuation law.

He provided advice to the Government on major reforms including the establishment of SOEs and Crown entities.

Mr Clarke, who is based in Wellington, also advised on the demutualisation of National Mutual and AMP, and on the dairy industry restructuring. He is co-author of Butterworths' Securities Law in New Zealand.

Ms Joychild has practised as a barrister since 1998, specialising in civil litigation, including public law, human rights, privacy and employment law. She has also undertaken a number of reviews and investigations in the public sector.

Prior to establishing her own practice in Auckland, Ms Joychild was employed by the Human Rights Commission for 16 years. She started as Investigation and Mediation Officer and in 1987 became Legal Adviser. For her last four years there, as Counsel for the Human Rights Commission and Proceedings Commissioner, she managed all test case litigation.

Ms Joychild has been the updating author of Brookers’ Human Rights Law since 2001 and is author of volume 2 of Brookers’ Human Resource Practice Manual, dealing with discrimination and harassment.

The appointments replace those of Justice Paul Heath and Donald Dugdale, both of whom left the Law Commission earlier this year, and Lianne Dalziel acknowledged their service and their contribution to law reform and public understanding of the law.