Duncan Coats

Senior Associate (Qualified in England and Wales)

Duncan is an employment law specialist who provides legal advice on all contentious and non-contentious aspects of the employment relationship. Duncan also provides corporate and commercial law advice to small and large organisations. Duncan brings a pragmatic approach to legal issues with a focus on building and maintaining strong, direct relationships with clients and delivering tailored and practical commercial advice. Duncan worked at a leading UK law firm before joining Lowndes Jordan.

Employment expertise

  • Defending a well-known retailer in connection with one of MBIE’s largest investigations and prosecutions relating to complex holiday pay and minimum wage issues;
  • providing strategic advice to one of NZ’s leading IT companies, including in relation to the termination of employment of members of its senior management team;
  • advising leading companies in the UK and NZ, including public, private and/or multinational companies, on various employment law matters such as policies and procedures, equal opportunities, employment relations authority/tribunal hearings, redundancies/re-organisations, ill-health/capability terminations, executive service agreements, employment agreements, restrictive covenants, settlement agreements and whistleblowing claims;
  • providing strategic advice to terminate employment, including in relation to senior employees;
  • advising on day-to-day HR matters including personal grievances, disciplinary and poor performance issues;
  • advising on complex holiday leave and pay issues;
  • corporate restructuring and redundancy procedures including drafting proposals for consultation and the implementation of new structures;
  • advising on the closure of numerous multinational companies’ operations in NZ, including advising on the termination of employment of 40+ employees without any successful personal grievances being raised;
  • in the UK, leading employment disclosure on the USD$92.5USD million disposal of a strategic client’s business;
  • in the UK, advising on a sensitive project involving collective redundancies of 40 employees at a site operated by a preeminent outsourcing/services company;
  • in the UK, lead assistant in advising one of the UK’s largest supermarket chains on sensitive and high-value High Court and Tribunal proceedings;
  • in the UK, acting for a FTSE 250 Financial Director on the termination of his employment;
  • drafting and implementation of health and safety policies, reports, processes and procedures; and
  • advising on WorkSafe investigations and prosecutions.

Commercial expertise

  • Advising on various corporate acquisitions and disposals including advising the shareholders of one of NZ’s largest telecommunications companies on the sale of the group to an ASX-listed company, advising a US company on its acquisition of a financial-data analytics company in NZ and advising a shareholder on the sale of a financial-advisory business to a leading accountancy firm in NZ;
  • asset sale and purchase agreements;
  • in the UK, advising on a debt for equity swap transaction worth in excess of $20m in NZD;
  • company restructures, hive-across transactions and amalgamations;
  • commercial agreements including joint venture agreements and shareholders’ agreements;
  • intellectual property matters including trade mark applications and trade mark proceedings;
  • advising a leading NZ franchisor in connection with its national franchising arrangements;
  • in the UK, advising on a very sensitive project undertaken on behalf of one of the UK’s largest banks - an independent review into allegations made regarding the bank's treatment of distressed companies; and
  • in the UK, advising a leading bank on the high profile Operation Eaglewood matter (at the time, one of the largest investigations by the Metropolitan Police into multi-million pound mortgage fraud).

CONTACT

e
p +64 9 309 2500

PA / SECRETARY

Jen Batty

Duncan Coats LLB(Hons)

Senior Associate (Qualified in England and Wales)

Duncan is an employment law specialist who provides legal advice on all contentious and non-contentious aspects of the employment relationship. Duncan also provides corporate and commercial law advice to small and large organisations. Duncan brings a pragmatic approach to legal issues with a focus on building and maintaining strong, direct relationships with clients and delivering tailored and practical commercial advice. Duncan worked at a leading UK law firm before joining Lowndes Jordan.

Employment expertise

  • Defending a well-known retailer in connection with one of MBIE’s largest investigations and prosecutions relating to complex holiday pay and minimum wage issues;
  • providing strategic advice to one of NZ’s leading IT companies, including in relation to the termination of employment of members of its senior management team;
  • advising leading companies in the UK and NZ, including public, private and/or multinational companies, on various employment law matters such as policies and procedures, equal opportunities, employment relations authority/tribunal hearings, redundancies/re-organisations, ill-health/capability terminations, executive service agreements, employment agreements, restrictive covenants, settlement agreements and whistleblowing claims;
  • providing strategic advice to terminate employment, including in relation to senior employees;
  • advising on day-to-day HR matters including personal grievances, disciplinary and poor performance issues;
  • advising on complex holiday leave and pay issues;
  • corporate restructuring and redundancy procedures including drafting proposals for consultation and the implementation of new structures;
  • advising on the closure of numerous multinational companies’ operations in NZ, including advising on the termination of employment of 40+ employees without any successful personal grievances being raised;
  • in the UK, leading employment disclosure on the USD$92.5USD million disposal of a strategic client’s business;
  • in the UK, advising on a sensitive project involving collective redundancies of 40 employees at a site operated by a preeminent outsourcing/services company;
  • in the UK, lead assistant in advising one of the UK’s largest supermarket chains on sensitive and high-value High Court and Tribunal proceedings;
  • in the UK, acting for a FTSE 250 Financial Director on the termination of his employment;
  • drafting and implementation of health and safety policies, reports, processes and procedures; and
  • advising on WorkSafe investigations and prosecutions.

Commercial expertise

  • Advising on various corporate acquisitions and disposals including advising the shareholders of one of NZ’s largest telecommunications companies on the sale of the group to an ASX-listed company, advising a US company on its acquisition of a financial-data analytics company in NZ and advising a shareholder on the sale of a financial-advisory business to a leading accountancy firm in NZ;
  • asset sale and purchase agreements;
  • in the UK, advising on a debt for equity swap transaction worth in excess of $20m in NZD;
  • company restructures, hive-across transactions and amalgamations;
  • commercial agreements including joint venture agreements and shareholders’ agreements;
  • intellectual property matters including trade mark applications and trade mark proceedings;
  • advising a leading NZ franchisor in connection with its national franchising arrangements;
  • in the UK, advising on a very sensitive project undertaken on behalf of one of the UK’s largest banks - an independent review into allegations made regarding the bank's treatment of distressed companies; and
  • in the UK, advising a leading bank on the high profile Operation Eaglewood matter (at the time, one of the largest investigations by the Metropolitan Police into multi-million pound mortgage fraud).

UPDATES

Let’s Do This! Coalition Government announces employment law reforms
26 January 2018

IMeasureU sold to Vicon
28 June 2017

An unsettling agreement
07 October 2016

Trial provisions (yet again) under review
26 September 2016

Health and Safety at Work Act 2015
11 May 2016