Scott Whitaker


I am a member of our corporate and commercial team based in Christchurch. I focus on commercial and agribusiness issues. I act for banks, insolvency practitioners, land owners and tenants. I have a number of clients who I advise on the ground in Christchurch, nationally and internationally on the sale and purchase of properties and also commercial leasing issues.

My agribusiness work crosses over with many aspects of commercial work and involves farm sales and disposals, subdivisions and commercial irrigation matters as well as farm succession and structuring issues. This includes acting for farmers, professional suppliers and forestry companies and involves applications to the Overseas Investment Office.

I also advise on a range of corporate and commercial matters and act for clients on insolvency and debt recovery.

My expertise includes:

  • Advising on sales, purchases and management of farms, including family arrangements, succession planning, trusts, leases and commercial contracts.
  • Advising US-based forestry companies on all aspects of business, including applications to the Overseas Investment Office.
  • Acting for companies and commercial enterprises on business contracts, structuring and general commercial advice, including advice on the Personal Property Securities Act.
  • Acting for individuals to structure their personal and business affairs. 
  • Acting for one of New Zealand’s major banks on refinancing, business acquisition and property financing deals where the threshold is above the bank’s in-house limits, including leading a deal in trans-Tasman financing.
  • Advising other lenders and investors on transactions and providing advice on obligations of lenders (consumer and non-consumer), including obtaining appropriate security.
  • Acting for receivers and liquidators on sales of assets and providing advice on competing creditors as well as provision of advice on a number of commercial debt recovery matters (often in conjunction with specialist litigation advice).

I have experience advising charities, as follows:

  • Assisting Air New Zealand run a trust for its staff members that were effected by the Christchurch Earthquakes. 
  • Establishing and managing the Pike River Disaster Relief Trust, which provided relief for the families of the victims of the Pike River disaster.
  • Establishing and acting as a trustee for the Christchurch Football Charitable Trust, a trust that operates tournaments and encourages participation in football at all levels. 

I am a member of the Institute of Directors.