John Burley


Auckland Office
John Burley
's Insights

Areas of Expertise

Construction and Building Matters
Employment - Employees
Employment - Employers
Insolvency & Debt Recovery
Land and Property Disputes
Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Commercial Land and Property Disputes
Bankruptcy & Personal Insolvency


John offers practical solutions to a diverse range of problems for his clients.

His key areas of specialty include:

  • Construction litigation (leaky building claims, Construction Contracts Act disputes)
  • Employment litigation (individual and collective employment contract negotiation, personal grievance claims, privacy and related law, professional disciplinary matters)
  • Maori issues with focus on trust disputes
  • Shareholder disputes
  • Body Corporate advice and dispute resolution

He also provides general practice advice to companies, trusts, and individuals and acts for an institutional lender in domestic mortgage and recovery work.

John prides himself in providing workable solutions for clients by providing realistic advice and settlements in preference to going to court where appropriate.


John's career has been a journey of diverse experiences. After spending three years honing his skills in New Zealand, he moved to London in 1987 where he specialized in advising on mergers, takeovers, and acquisitions. However, in 1990, he decided to return to New Zealand and took on several locum assignments before securing an in-house position where he represented and advised large health industry unions. He then joined the legal team at the Employers & Manufacturers Association until 1996 when he returned to private practice. In 2004, John joined Callaghan & Co and was part of the team that merged with McVeagh Fleming in December 2011.

Main practice areas

Construction & Building Matters

Insolvency & Debt Recovery

Land & Property Disputes

Litigation & Dispute Resolution

Commercial Land & Property Disputes

Bankruptcy & Personal Insolvency

General Civil Litigation & Dispute Resolution

Body Corporate Advice & Dispute Resolution

Maori Issues including Maori Land Court & Maori Appellate Court Representation


LLB, University of Canterbury 1984

Admitted in New Zealand 1988

Admitted in England and Wales 1988


Examples of transactions

Outside interests

John and Katherine have been married for over 30 years and have three daughters living overseas. John enjoys participating in a range of outdoor activities such as skiing, golf (with Katherine) and tennis. Both he and Katherine are avid travellers both here and abroad.