Tanya Wood


Tanya specialises in insurance, cyber, construction and commercial disputes. She is known in the market for her expertise in defending large complex cases, with particular expertise in civil claims, including construction contract disputes, cybersecurity and first response claims, liability and defective building claims and commercial disputes, particularly banking and financial services and securities claims.

A number of Tanya’s matters have been long-running disputes involving novel areas of law, which have provided various precedents for disputes in New Zealand.  Most recently she has been leading the defence for one of the director defendants in the two class actions (funded by separate litigation funders), parallel FMA pecuniary penalty proceedings and proceedings on behalf of the two sets of liquidators, arising out of the $747m collapse of NZX listed insurance company CBL Corporation.

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With over 20 years’ experience advising insurers, brokers and clients on a range of insurance related matters, she has become a specialist in first response and triaging claims for insurers. She has led and managed a number of sensitive and highly complex security and first response claims associated with cyber and physical attacks, along with the business interruption and fraud issues invariably raised by these events. Tanya’s cyber experience also extends to advising insurers on policy wordings along with working with underwriters and brokers on changes to proposal forms and pre placement due diligence. She also works closely with insurers and brokers to assist with their ongoing cyber insurance training (and wider education for clients). Tanya has significant experience in the liability issues that often arise from a breach, from coverage advice through to acting in litigation arising from a breach.

Tanya has spent the majority of her career acting for liability and general insurers, advising on indemnity issues and defending insured liability claims.  Tanya has particular expertise in professional negligence claims for building professionals and consultants, public and product liability policies, construction risks including contract works insurance, directors and officers liability policies, property and business interruption insurance and cyber insurance.

Recent highlights

  • Representing one the directors of the failed CBL Corporation (and CBL Insurance) in the six High Court proceedings (FMA proceedings, liquidators proceedings and two sets of class actions issued by shareholders) issued against the directors in the aftermath of the $747m collapse of these companies.
  • Advising on complex coverage issues under the D&O and Public Offering of Securities cover for directors in the CBL proceedings.
  • Acting for insurers in subrogated recoveries arising from the Christchurch earthquakes, in both the High Court and the Canterbury Earthquake Insurance Tribunal.
  • Defending various construction professionals in High Court proceedings related to defective building allegations.
  • Acting in a cyber breach claim involving quantum (allegedly) in the region of $1M plus.
  • Defending civil engineers in relation to allegations of negligence and breach of contract in various infrastructure projects.
  • Representing the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet (for Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority) in relation to the Christchurch earthquake rebuild project of the Avon River Precinct project.
  • Advising on coverage under a PI policy for a large loss involving defective building allegations (mixed structural, fire and watertightness).
  • Advising a design professional in relation to policy issues associated with Aluminium Composite Cladding.
  • Advising on coverage issues in relation to natural disasters and landslip claims.
  • Advising insurers on product recall and manufacturing defect issues.
  • Defending various engineers in relation to civil proceedings in the High Court in relation to their alleged negligence (both for lead engineers and peer review engineers).
  • Representing a head contractor in relation to a payment claim / schedule dispute, involving a statutory demand.

Tanya's insights

Insurance law insights featured in GILC Risk Radar report 2024

24 May 2024

Chambers and Partners - Insurance & Reinsurance 2024 New Zealand chapter

23 February 2024

Tanya Wood features in Sparke Helmore's 2023 Construction Update

20 December 2023

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He tāngata

  • Regularly contributes and speaks at industry events and conferences on cyber, construction disputes, insurance law and director liability issues.



  • The Society of Construction Law New Zealand
  • The New Zealand Insurance Law Association

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