Terms of Engagement with Non-Clients
In our capacity as lawyers in New Zealand, we will Act in compliance with our obligations found in the Lawyers and Conveyancers Act (Lawyers: Conduct and Client Care) Rules 2008 (CCCR).
Approaches by parties wanting to be clients
1. Merely contacting us and asking us to act for you does not automatically make you our client. We are obliged not to act contrary to any professional obligation and ethical obligations.
2. There are other reasons that may prevent you from becoming a client of ours. For example, if there is a conflict of interest.
3. You will only become a client work once your clear instruction that you wish to instruct us as a client has been received and we have agreed to act for you.
Our dealings with non-clients
1. We advise that we are increasingly recording conversations (including telephone conversations), including where such recorded conversations record personal information under the Privacy Act 1993. Not all of our conversations are necessarily recorded. We advise that we intend to record conversations with non-clients. We will hold any recordings taken on information systems within our control and on backups of these systems for as little as a month. We generally use these recordings to make accurate diary notes of our conversations. The recordings and diary notes may be used: to accurately record conversations; as evidence about what was said; and for training purposes. If a diary note of a conversation has been sent to you and we do not hear back from you within a month disputing the contents of the diary note we may destroy the recording and will rely solely on the diary note of our conversation as an accurate record of our conversation. If we receive a communication from you stating that you dispute what was said in our conversation as reflected in our diary note within a month of our conversation, we will send you a copy of our recording unless doing so offends against our obligations under the CCCR or the Privacy Act or other legislation. We will always tell you why we believe we cannot release a copy of the recording, if we believe we are not entitled to do so. In such an event, we invite you to provide us with reasons as to why you believe the recording should be made available, despite our view to the contrary. In difficult cases, where we cannot agree whether the recording should be released, we will seek advice from the Privacy Commissioner or the Law Society (or invite you to seek such advice). In the event that you believe you are entitled to a copy of a recoding that we decline to release, please notify us before one month has elapsed from the date of the recoding if you decide to take the matter further. In such an event, we will keep a copy of the recording, in case we are later recommended (for example by the Privacy Commissioner) that the recording should be released. If you do not let us know that you are intending to seek external advice (for example from the Privacy Commissioner or the Law Society), the recording will be deleted in accordance with our usual 30-day deletion policy.
2. Our advice is provided to our clients. We are not obliged to provide any third parties with advice provided to our client, even if our client has consented to this. Even if we do provide this advice to a third party, we are not liable for any loss or damage arising out of a third party’s use of this advice provided to our client.
3. If we contact or are contacted by a third party or a party on the other side of a dispute matter, we will apply the requirements of the CCCR under Chapter 5. In particular, we will protect and promote our client’s interests and act for our client free from compromising influences or loyalties. We are not acting for a third party and we will treat our dealings with non-clients accordingly. This may result in outcomes that are detrimental to third parties where our actions, advice and communications are designed to promote our client’s interests.
4. We do not accept responsibility and will not be liable for any direct, indirect or consequential damage or loss caused by providing third parties information, even if third parties subsequently rely on that information.
5. We do not operate a trust account and will not accept funds to be held in trust.
6. If you request us to send you documentation, you agree to the use of electronic technology as set out in section 16 of the Electronic Transactions Act 2002 for the purposes of communications between us. This means that all relavant provisions of the Electronic Transactions Act 2002 will apply. In particular, you consent to receiving documents signed by electronic signature from us in terms of section 22.
7. Please note that we are not obliged to hold records or materials sent to us from third parties unless retaining these are in our client’s interests.
Effective from 2 August 2010