Cecily specialises in insurance law and civil and commercial litigation.
Cecily commenced practice in 1993 after graduating from the University of Auckland. She spent the earlier part of her career specialising in commercial litigation at two of New Zealand’s largest commercial law firms, and practised law in the United Kingdom while on her OE. Cecily has specialised in insurance and litigation since joining Fee Langstone’s predecessor firm Jones Fee in 2002, becoming a partner in that firm in 2010.
She regularly advises major New Zealand insurers on policy coverage issues and claims disputes, particularly in the areas of public and product liability insurance, property insurance and business interruption. She has provided extensive advice to insurers on the complex insurance issues which have arisen out of the Christchurch earthquakes, across both commercial and domestic policy wordings.
Cecily has significant experience in litigation and resolution of disputes through mediation and negotiation, including claims of significant value and complexity. She has represented clients in defended fixtures in the High Court, and appeared as counsel in the Court of Appeal. Areas of specialty include contractual disputes, negligence, construction and engineering issues, Fair Trading Act claims and insurance coverage disputes.
Cecily enjoys the challenge of resolving difficult legal issues, and is focussed on providing legally sound, practical and economic solutions.
What is the Fee Langstone difference? Cecily shares her thoughts...
- Acting for the insurer in the successful defence of a claim in the High Court arising from the Christchurch earthquakes (Prattley Enterprises v Vero Insurance  18 ANZ Insurance Cases 62-075). The three week trial concerned whether a settlement agreement could be set aside, and the appropriate measure of indemnity for loss of a commercial building damaged in multiple earthquakes. Cecily also acted for the insurer in the appeal hearing, successfully defended for the insurer  NZCA 67.
- Appearing as lead counsel in the High Court, conducting the insurer’s successful defence to a claim for earthquake damaged contents in a trial over issues of contractual interpretation and expert evidence (Newbery v AA Insurance  NZHC 2457).
- Providing policy coverage advice to insurers on material damage and business interruption issues for some of the largest value commercial claims arising from the Christchurch earthquakes.
- Successful subrogated recovery action against a US company arising from failure of a gas generating turbine, involving issues of US contract law and misleading and deceptive conduct by the vendor.
- New Zealand Insurance Law Association
- New Zealand Law Society