Ms Helen Macfarlane > Hesketh Henry > Auckland, New Zealand > Lawyer Profile

Hesketh Henry
HSBC Tower, Level 14
188 Quay Street
Auckland 1010
New Zealand

Work Department

Construction, Insurance, Property


Helen is a partner in the Litigation and Dispute Resolution team. She has strong expertise in construction litigation, professional indemnity insurance and property disputes including rent review arbitrations. In the construction field, Helen also has front-end expertise in contract drafting and advice.


Helen was admitted as a barrister in London in 1987 completing pupillage at Fountain Court Chambers in 1988 before moving to New York where she worked as a litigation attorney for 15 years with a leading US and international law firm Shearman and Sterling, specialising in commercial litigation and international arbitration. Helen was admitted to the bar of the State of New York in 1989 and to practice before the federal courts of the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York and the Second Circuit (federal appellate court). Helen joined Hesketh Henry in 2007 as a Senior Associate and in 2017 was appointed partner.


New Zealand Law Society AMINZ New Zealand Society of Construction Law


BA Juris Oxon (Oxford equivalent of LLB) 1985 BA major English, minor Political Studies (Auckland 1980) MA philosophy 1st Class Hons (Auckland 1983)

Lawyer Rankings

New Zealand > Real estate and construction

Praised for its ‘excellent knowledge and niche capabilities’, Hesketh Henry is strong in contentious construction mandates, while also advising on commercial property acquisitions and disposals, subdivisions and leasing matters. Head of construction Nick Gillies ‘provides highly considered advice’ on the full range of construction matters, from time and money disputes and building defect claims to contract work, while Glen Holm-Hansen is praised for his ‘in-depth understanding in construction law’. Robert Berry, who has notable expertise in ground leases both historical and contemporary, jointly leads the real estate team alongside Brian Coburn, who advises on commercial office developments. Other key members of the practice include prominent litigators Helen Macfarlane and Christina Bryant, Jacintha Tan, and senior associate Sarah Holderness.

New Zealand > Insurance

Noted for its expertise in ‘constructed-related litigation and associated insurance issues’, Hesketh Henry also has demonstrable experience in the transport sector, and counts professional indemnity claims, business interruption, health and safety, cyber risk and regulatory matters in its caseload. Alan Sherlock, who focuses on marine insurance, fire cases, reinsurance and third-party liability claims, leads the practice alongside construction expert Helen Macfarlane, and managing partner Christina Bryant, who handles professional indemnity claims. Special counsel Stephanie Corban has experience in negligence claims and policy coverage issues, while senior associate Charlotte Robertson is praised for leaving ‘no stone unturned’. Transport and trade law specialist Simon Cartwright is another key member of the team.

New Zealand > Dispute resolution

The ‘commercially-focused, knowledgeable and tireless litigation team’ at Auckland-based firm Hesketh Henry focuses on contentious matters arising out of the construction, insurance, trade and transport, trusts and employment sectors. Christina Bryant has experience in construction and property disputes, with a focus on civil claims and regulatory investigations, while Nick Gillies acts for some of New Zealand’s largest civil and vertical contractors and specialist subcontractors. ‘TenaciousHelen Macfarlane is another key contact for contentious construction matters, as well as insurance disputes. Glen Holm-Hansen, who focuses on construction and insolvency litigation, jointly leads the practice alongside employment expert Alison Maelzer.

Comparative Guides

New Zealand: Construction April 2022 This country-specific Q&A provides an overview to Construction laws and regulations that may occur in New Zealand.