Stacey Shortall

Partner - Dispute Resolution and Litigation

Stacey has more than 20 years’ experience successfully representing financial institutions, other corporate clients, public sector entities and directors and officers in significant litigation and regulatory matters. Before returning to MinterEllisonRuddWatts in 2010 she worked as a litigator in New York and is recognised by international legal directories as a leading New Zealand lawyer.  In 2018 Stacey was named as New Zealand’s Disputes Star of the Year at the annual Asia Law Asia-Pacific Dispute Resolution Awards.

Stacey has received other awards for her community-based work in New York and New Zealand.  She is the founding trustee of the Who Did You Help Today charitable trust which has developed a number of projects designed to create social change including Homework Clubs which partner organisations with low decile primary schools around New Zealand, the Mothers Project which coordinates helps imprisoned mothers maintain connections with their children, and HelpTank which is New Zealand’s first home-grown digital skilled volunteering platform. Stacey also founded Our Words Matter, an online forum intended to address a range of issues that are currently facing New Zealand.  In 2019 Stacey was named as a semi-finalist for the Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year Award for her work in developing projects designed to create social change.

Stacey is a published author.  She also is a frequent speaker on issues concerning gender diversity, inclusion and the importance of giving back to the community.

Professional background

Recent work

2017 Leaders' Debate Injunction

Acted for TVNZ in successfully opposing an interim orders application after Gareth Morgan sought an injunction prohibiting TVNZ from holding televised election debates without him in the lead up to New Zealand’s 2017 general election.

Claims arising from the Canterbury and Wellington Earthquakes

Stacey has acted for various commercial insureds and insurers in respect of claims arising from the Canterbury and Wellington earthquakes. The claims, mainly for material damage and business interruption, involve a full spectrum of issues including policy interpretation, indemnity issues and loss quantification as well as claims processing, management and resolution.

Health and safety matters

Following the explosion at Pike River’s coal mine in November 2010 Stacey was engaged to respond to investigations by NZ Police, the Chief Coroner and the (then) Department of Labour. She was lead counsel for certain company directors and officers, including Pike’s former CEO and board chairman, before the Royal Commission into the Pike Tragedy and at the Coronial Inquest. Stacey also defended Pike’s former CEO in his prosecution for alleged health and safety violations.  Stacey routinely assists clients with internal and WorkSafe investigations following incidents, together with acting as defense counsel in response to prosecutions.  She also regularly advises boards of directors, senior management teams and operational staff about health and safety matters, including in relation to the exercise of due diligence.

Incident and crisis management

Stacey has assisted a broad range of clients in response to high-profile incidents which have involved various regulatory agencies and media attention.  Several of these clients have been based offshore and required immediate advice in relation to complex issues of jurisdiction and potential culpability.  Stacey frequently advises clients about crisis management preparation.

Failed finance companies

Stacey has acted for directors of several failed finance companies in investigations and prosecutions by the Financial Markets Authority of alleged breaches of the Securities Act by making purportedly untrue statements in prospectuses and investment statements.

Professional negligence lawsuits

Stacey has acted for a range of professional advisors (lawyer, accountants, auditors and engineers) in professional negligence lawsuits, including defending clients in several cases that arose from the high profile failure of second-tier finance companies and property developments during the Global Financial Crisis. These have been large-scale, complex commercial claims, often featuring multiple parties, occasional interplay with criminal/regulatory prosecutions, and multi-threaded litigation strategies.

White collar crime

Stacey has acted for clients responding to investigations involving alleged Privacy Act breaches, together with allegations of other improper conduct.  This work has involved an array of issues and detailed preparation of witnesses for NZ Police and other agency interviews.

Admitted

  • 2007, US Supreme
  • 2000, New York State and US Federal
  • 1996, New Zealand

Qualifications

  • Public International Law Certificate, Hague Academy of International Law
  • LLM, University of Alberta
  • LLB, BCA (Accounting), Victoria University of Wellington

Affiliations

  • Founder WHO DID YOU HELP TODAY?
  • Trustee of the Whodidyouhelptoday Charitable Trust
  • Co-author of Health and Safety at Work in New Zealand: Know the Law

Specialisations

  • Commercial Claims
  • Crisis Management
  • Insurance
  • Regulatory Compliance
  • White Collar Crime
  • Health and Safety

Awards

  • Semi-finalist - Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year 2019
  • Winner - New Zealand Disputes Star of the Year - Asialaw and Benchmark Litigation Dispute Resolution Awards 2018
  • Winner - Blake Leader - Sir Peter Blake Leader Awards 2016
  • Kiwibank Local Hero recipient 2016
  • Winner - Lawyer of the Year - LawFuel 2015
  • Winner - Community and Not-for-Profit Award - Women of Influence Awards 2015
  • Recognised on NZ Lawyer 2015 Hot List
  • Leading Lawyer - Dispute Resolution - Chambers Asia Pacific
  • Leading Lawyer - Chambers Global and The Legal 500 Asia Pacific
  • Leading Lawyer - Legal Media Group Rising Stars 2015
  • Ranked as a leading Dispute Resolution lawyer, The Legal 500 Asia Pacific