Fee Langstone > Auckland, New Zealand > Firm Profile

Fee Langstone
Level 18
51 Shortland Street
Auckland 1010
New Zealand

New Zealand > Insurance Tier 1

Based primarily in Auckland, insurance is the cornerstone of Fee Langstone‘s practice. Renowned for its expertise in policy advice and indemnity matters, its capabilities also extend to regulatory and compliance work and professional disciplinary complaints. Department co-heads Philippa Fee, who clients describe as a ‘true insurance expert‘ with ‘wide ranging experience across various insurance lines’, and Craig Langstone are leaders in the industry, with Langstone advising across the whole spectrum of insurance matters, including professional indemnity, public liability, business interruption and parametric insurance. Pauline Davies is highlighted as ‘extremely knowledgeable and approachable in the marine field’. Litigators Cecily Brick, Matthew Atkinson, Virginia Wethey and counsel Bradley Alcorn are key practitioners in Auckland.

Practice head(s):

Philippa Fee; Craig Langstone


‘The firm has a solid grasp of insurance and admiralty law and practice.’

‘Pauline Davies – advice from her is always solid, well thought out and succinctly delivered. ’

‘Phillipa Fee – true insurance expert, capable court lawyer, wide ranging experience across various insurance lines. Virginia Wethey – highly capable insurance lawyer who gets great results.’

‘Pauline Davies is our contact and is extremely knowledgable and approachable in the marine field. ’

‘Very capable team of insurance experts with a great understanding of insurance products and industry imperatives.’

‘It started off quite small but has grown into one of the most valuable firms in the industry. The team’s expertise ranges among a variety of topics. They are always available to help and at times they provide some free legal advice.’

‘The individuals are very friendly and knowledgeable.’

‘The team have a remarkable depth of experience and talent in insurance law. ’

Key clients


AIG (NZ), AIG Australia, AIG Europe (UK) Ltd

AIG Speciality Claims Australasia

Allianz New Zealand

Allianz Australia Ltd

Ando Insurance Group Ltd

Antares Managing Agency Ltd

Argo Managing Agency Ltd

AXA Climate

Berkshire Hathaway Speciality Insurance

Canopius Syndicate

Chaucer Syndicates Ltd

Chubb Insurance NZ

Cloud Collections Ltd -on behalf of Capricorn Mutual Ltd

Club Marine Ltd

Crombie Lockwood

Delta Insurance

Dual NZ

FMG Insurance

General Reinsurance Corporation


International Transport Intermediaries

Lloyds of London

Manchester Underwriting Management Ltd


Newline Syndicate 1218

NZI & NZI Marine (IAG)

NZ Underwriting Agencies Ltd

QBE European Operations

QBE Insurance (Australia) Ltd

QBE Fiji

QBE Smartpak

RedSky Insurance

Southern Cross Benefits Ltd

Steadfast Group


Thomas Miller

Tokio Marine & Nichido

Vero Insurance (New Zealand) / Suncorp

Zurich New Zealand

Work highlights

  • Acted for Vero Insurance (Suncorp Group) in a proceeding concerning earthquake damage to a group of industrial and commercial buildings.
  • Acted for the three co-insurers (AIG, Vero, NZI) of a marine cargo policy issued in respect of used cars being imported into New Zealand from Japan.
  • Acting for QBE Insurance (Australia) in respect of a claim brought by Body Corporate 423090 following earthquake damage sustained to the Body Corp’s building in Christchurch known as Pacific Tower.

New Zealand > Dispute resolution Tier 3

Noted for its ‘deep understanding of the insurance industry and insurance law’, Auckland-based Fee Langstone is variously praised for its ‘friendly, formidable, practical and reliable’ advice. The practice counts complaints, regulatory investigations, and class actions in its key caseload. The team is jointly led by the ‘truly outstanding’ Philippa Fee and Craig Langstone. Fee regularly represents insurers and their clients in property damage claims, while Langstone is routinely engaged by insurance companies in dispute resolution matters. The ‘client-focused’ Russell Stewart is noted for his expertise in professional indemnity litigation, defending claims against solicitors and barristers, accountants, investment bankers, and engineers.

Practice head(s):

Philippa Fee; Craig Langstone

Other key lawyers:

Pauline Davies; Russell Stewart; Matthew Atkinson; Virginia Wethe


‘Very strong team of capable lawyers with a deep understanding of the insurance industry and insurance law.’

‘All in all, we have found the team at Fee Langstone always friendly, formidable, practical and reliable. We have found their service to be exemplary.’

‘Philippa Fee was amazing. She gave great practical advice right from the outset and was available when urgently needed with fantastic support. The support throughout was great and her skill at wrapping it up when it needed to be resolved was perfect. Truly outstanding.’

‘Russell Stewart is client focused and provides practical advice and litigation support in a cost-efficient manner.’

‘Fee Langstone have a formidable team of lawyers who are able to listen to its clients, understand the client’s issues, which are often complex, then advise on the matters in hand within a reasonable timeframe.’

‘Russell Stewart knows his audit litigation more than anybody I have ever met.’

‘Fee Langstone are exceptional litigators. They always kept me well informed and ensured that what they were providing was what my business needed. They are knowledgeable and practical. Excellent value for money.’

‘Russell Stewart is client-focused and provides practical advice and litigation support in a cost-efficient manner.’

Key clients

Crombie Lockwood


Frank’s International

KPMG Ireland

KPMG New Zealand

Lloyds of London

NCI Commercial Collections

NTI Limited


QBE European Operations

QBE Insurance (Australia) Ltd

NZI & NZI Marine

Vero Insurance (Suncorp)

Zurich New Zealand

Work highlights

  • Acted for Ernst & Young in relation to High Court proceedings brought by Fuji Xerox NZ and related entities against its former auditor, EY, two former directors and the former CFO arising out of alleged inappropriate accounting practices.
  • Representing QBE Insurance (Australia) Ltd and its insured (Statistics New Zealand) in bringing a subrogated recovery action against two engineering firms and the owner/landlord of a building which has been deemed a total loss following the Kaikoura earthquake.
  • Acting for Chapman Tripp in defending High Court class action proceedings in relation to the initial public offering of shares and subsequent collapse of the Intueri Education Group.

Fee Langstone is a leading insurance and commercial litigation practice. With a team of seven partners and almost thirty staff, we act for most of New Zealand’s major insurers as well as a number of international insurance clients.

Since our inception nearly 30 years ago, we have successfully managed a range of matters involving almost every insurance product on the market. Our in-depth knowledge of the industry, coupled with our commitment to providing a high level of professionalism, pragmatism and reliability has seen many of our clients remain with us for decades.


Our company was founded in the late 1980s when partners, Philippa Fee and Craig Langstone, were partners at Heaney Jones. In 1996, they became founding partners of Jones Fee, later joined by Pauline DaviesCecily Brick then joined the partnership in 2010 and together, they formed Fee Langstone in 2015.  To complement the firm’s depth of experience, we then added the next generation of partners, with Matthew Atkinson joining in 2016 followed by  Russell Stewart and Virginia Wethey in 2019 to complete the current leadership team.

Our specialist services include:

  • Insurance: the cornerstone of Fee Langstone’s expertise as a full-service insurance firm
  • Dispute resolution and commercial litigation
  • Policy advice
  • Regulatory and compliance
  • Professional disciplinary complaints
  • Maritime &transportation
  • Corporate legal services
  • Insolvency

An active voice in the industry 

Fee Langstone plays an active role in both the legal and insurance industries with our partners and senior lawyers regularly presenting to industry bodies such as IBANZ, NZ Law, ANZIIF, the New Zealand Law Society and NZILA as well as providing a range of specialist training seminars for our clients.

Ensuring the E in team is ‘Everything Equal’

As a busy practice, we are focused on ensuring we maintain an inclusive workplace where everyone feels safe, valued and supported. We are proudly a gender-diverse organisation and a member of Diversity Works NZ.  We are also part of the Pride Pledge programme and we nurture an inclusive work environment, regardless of identity. The firm also provides a range of opportunities to nurture good mental health and wellbeing practices for our people as well as a mentoring program to ensure everyone in the team is happy and proud to call Fee Langstone a great place to work.


Department Name Email Telephone
Insurance Craig Langstone
Insurance Cecily Brick
Insurance Virginia Wethey
Dispute resolution Philippa Fee
Dispute resolution Craig Langstone
Policy advice Cecily Brick
Policy advice Matthew Atkinson
Professional disciplinary complaints Philippa Fee
Professional disciplinary complaints Matthew Atkinson
Maritime and transportation Pauline Davies
Corporate legal services Craig Langstone
Corporate legal services Pauline Davies
Insolvency Pauline Davies
Insolvency Philippa Fee
Construction Cecily Brick
Construction Craig Langstone
Regulatory advice and statutory defence Philippa Fee
Regulatory advice and statutory defence Matthew Atkinson
Employment Craig Langstone
Employment Philippa Fee
Professional indemnity Philippa Fee
Professional indemnity Matthew Atkinson
Directors and officers Philippa Fee
Professional indemnity Russell Stewart
Directors and officers Matthew Atkinson
Property insurance Craig Langstone
Property insurance Cecily Brick
Fidelity insurance Philippa Fee
Fidelity insurance Craig Langstone
Cyber insurance Craig Langstone
Cyber insurance Cecily Brick
Number of lawyers : 26
Australia and New Zealand Institute of Insurance and Finance (ANZIIF)
Maritime Law Association of Australia and New Zealand
Young Insurance Professionals Australia and New Zealand
New Zealand Insurance Law Association

Fee Langstone’s clients include major insurers from around the world, international auditing and accounting firms, an international seafarers’ protection organization, a number of New Zealand’s major exporting and chartering interests, and businesses involved in commercial activity in relation to disputes in New Zealand.

Fee Langstone has a ‘best friends’ relationship with global law firm Clyde & Co. It is a strategic collaboration designed to strengthen Clyde & Co’s presence in New Zealand and to provide Fee Langstone with international coverage and expertise. As part of the agreement, the two firms refer work to each other where possible and undertake joint marketing initiatives across the New Zealand and Australian regions. The legal industry is becoming increasingly global and this alliance provides Fee Langstone with a valuable international and Australasian perspective.

Fee Langstone has been ranked in Band 1 for Insurance in the 2020 Chambers Asia-Pacific rankings. Philippa Fee was named as a Notable Practitioner and was ranked as Band 1 Lawyer for Insurance. Partner Pauline Davies is also named in numerous legal guides, including the Guide to the World’s Leading Shipping and Maritime Lawyers and to Women in Business Law, Best Lawyers and the Chambers Asia Pacific Guide.