About

Well, hello there.

At iCLAW we believe our role is not just about reading and writing the fine print, but about helping you reach your goals.

We come to work every day because we love helping people like you with the things that matter to them – whether it is buying or selling property, protecting your family’s future, managing your business and everything in between.

We are lawyers. But we are also mums, dads, sons and daughters. We are business owners and employees. We are homeowners and renters. And above all else, we are people doing business with people.

We are fuelled by compassion, client results and coffee (usually flat and white, sometimes in a martini).

Aasha Foley

Aasha Foley

Managing Partner

Aasha sees the law as a way to help people achieve their goals.

Specialising in commercial and property law, Aasha’s diverse expertise includes property development and corporate financing, commercial advice and structuring, mergers and acquisitions, limited partnerships, and intellectual property.

Aasha has also established herself as an expert in managing complex mix-used property developments. Her experience in the property market, and in particular property development financing, has seen her develop a reputation for executing projects of scale effectively and efficiently.

With property development, comes investment and capital raising, and so with that Aasha’s experience has extended to the establishment of private equity funds and property investment vehicles.

Aasha’s expertise extends further to the intricacies of intellectual property in a commercial transaction, including the provision of licensing, supply, distribution and joint venture agreements, the sale and purchase of intellectual property rights, no-shop agreements and non-disclosure agreements.

Known for her ability to identify opportunities and anticipate outcomes, Aasha is an insightful, precise and pragmatic advisor.

Her passion and drive have seen her become one of New Zealand’s youngest partners and owners of a law firm, and named as a Rising Star by NZ Lawyer in 2021.

Email: aasha@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 929 4302

Mobile: 0211475687

Owen Culliney

Owen Culliney

Partner

Owen sees the law differently.  

A founding partner of iCLAW, he started the firm with the vision of an innovative, boutique practice that puts people at the centre of every decision.

Owen’s 15-year legal career has taken him from commercial property transactions at Harkness Henry to general practice, rural property, general counsel in the medico-legal space and partnership at a midsized Waikato firm.

At James & Wells, Owen grew a corporate and commercial practice specialising in intellectual property and developed a bustling property division alongside Aasha Foley.

Owen has established himself as a trusted adviser in the corporate and commercial space and continues to oversee the property practice at iCLAW while remaining engaged in the medico-legal field.  

Clients love him because of his ability to get to the heart of an issue and provide strategic solutions. Whether working with a small business or a multinational corporation, Owen approaches every interaction with a genuine desire to do right by the people he is helping.

His passion for elevating clients’ success on the local and international stage is what drives him to continue to grow and innovate.

Email: owen@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 929 4301

Mobile: 027 213 8979

Sam Douglas

Sam Douglas

Partner

Sam sees the law as a way to improve the lives of others.

With more than 14 years' experience working at respected law firms in Auckland, Waikato and the Bay of Plenty, Sam brings a broad range of expertise to the iCLAW team.

Specialising in property and commercial law, he is a trusted adviser on commercial contracts, the sale and purchase of businesses and all aspects of commercial and residential property.

His extensive experience in this space includes greenfield and commercial subdivisions, complex due diligence investigations, construction, large-scale leasing projects, financing and technical title advice.

Sam also assists clients with asset planning, including trusts, wills and relationship property matters.

Sam is known by his clients as a practical and conscientious advisor that goes the extra mile. His motivation to help clients get the best results extends to everything he does, whether it’s a large and complex commercial deal or helping a family get into their first home.

Sam is one of only nine lawyers in Hamilton to be named an 'Accredited Property Law Specialist" by the Property Law Section of the New Zealand Law Society.

Email: sam@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 929 4303

Mobile: 027 465 7791

David Gubb

David Gubb

Partner

David has recently joined our team as a Partner in our Mount Maunganui office (iCLAW | The Mount Lawyers) .

With nearly two decades of experience working in Tauranga, Te Aroha, Hamilton and London, David brings a wide range of expertise to the iCLAW team.

David specialises in all areas of property and commercial law, as well as all other areas of general practice.

David regularly advises clients on rural law matters, particularly in the Orchard/Kiwifruit and Farming space, including access and subdivision matters. Coming from a Dairy Farming background, David applies his personal experiences when advising his clients on rural law matters.

Email: david@iclaw.com

Phone: 07 575 2507

Mobile: 020 432 4822

Sebastian Bucher

Sebastian Bucher

Partner

Sebastian (Seb) is based in our Mount Maunganui Office (iCLAW | The Mount Lawyers).

Seb graduated Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Arts from Canterbury University in 2014. In the intervening years prior to joining The Mount Lawyers in early 2021, Seb has practiced in his hometown of Taupo, an overseas stint in Belfast, Northern Ireland and also Auckland, then moving to Tauranga.

While Seb has a broad legal background, his focus at law is on ‘all things property’, including business sales and acquisitions, trusts and general asset planning matters – including Wills and Enduring Powers of Attorney.

Whether you are first home purchasers with Kiwi-Saver home start, subdividing, selling or purchasing a business with a commercial lease or maybe selling your family home to build that dream home. Seb can talk you through the process.

Seb is quick to grasp the issues at hand and brings his vibrant fresh outlook to deal with these in a no-nonsense practical manner.

Recently purchased a new home in Tauranga with Kelsey, Seb looks to grow his client base and professional influence. A benefit of familial heritage also sees Seb fluent in Swiss-German.

Outside of the office, Seb is an active participant in collegial business development forums and is into anything involving fitness and sports.

Email: seb@iclaw.com

Phone: 07 575 4091

Mobile: 027 637 4621

Grant Aislabie

Grant Aislabie

Consultant

Grant is based in our Mount Maunganui office (iCLAW | The Mount Lawyers).

Grant obtained his law degree from Auckland University and has practiced in Tauranga for many years.  In 2000, seeking a wider challenge, he took up the position of Principal Disputes Tribunal Referee in Wellington.  After completing this contracted term, Grant returned to Auckland, where he continued to practice law.

In 2017 the opportunity was presented to return to Mount Maunganui and purchased CG Law, rebranding to the Mount Lawyers. Grant brings comprehensive experience and expertise to all aspects of Property, Subdivision, Commercial leasing, and Conveyancing Law. In the realm of Dispute Resolution, he has a wealth of experience from his years in the Disputes Tribunal, preferring negotiation and mediation to the battle of Litigation. In addition, Commercial Law, settlement of Relationship Property issues, as well as Wills, Trusts and Estate Administration, all sit comfortably within his expertise.

Outside of the office, when a busy practice allows, his interests are family, motorcycle touring, travel and a variety of motorsports.

Email: grant@iclaw.com

Phone: 07 575 4044

Mobile: 021 989 303

Nickolas Sam

Nickolas Sam

Hong Kong Representative

Nick is iCLAW’s representative in Hong Kong where he has been based since 2007. Nick works alongside our New Zealand office to extend iCLAW’s international reach for our clients in New Zealand to enter markets in Hong Kong, Singapore, China and Taiwan.

Nick has a myriad of corporate and legal experience, including appointments as an executive director of companies listed on the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong. Nick has also held positions as general counsel to an investment management group in Hong Kong and directorships with licensed money lenders and corporate finance advisory businesses regulated by the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong.

Nick practiced law in New Zealand before joining global offshore firm Ogier in Hong Kong, where he specialised in the Cayman Islands and British Virgin Islands law aspects of corporate advisory matters, aircraft financing and the formation and ongoing operation of investment funds. Subsequently, Nick co-founded a boutique corporate law firm in Hong Kong where he practised for five years.

Nick is qualified as a solicitor in New Zealand, England & Wales, British Virgin Islands and Hong Kong. In addition, Nick is one of the few in the Asia region qualified to practice as an attorney in the Republic of the Marshall Islands and is recognised in the Asia-Pacific and Global editions of Chambers and Partners (2020, 2021 & 2022) for his expertise in Marshall Islands law.

Nick holds a Bachelor of Laws with Honours and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Waikato, New Zealand.

"Nickolas Sam is praised as "a very approachable and excellent resource for advice on the intricacies of Marshall Islands law." Based in Hong Kong, he is admired by another interviewee for his "dynamic and creative advice." He advises clients on the formation of Marshall Islands corporations, as well as acquisitions and contentious matters."
- Chambers and Partners

Email: nick@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 808 0787

Isaac Whatnall

Isaac Whatnall

Associate

Isaac is a problem solver. A pragmatic and knowledgeable advisor, Isaac works hard to get the best outcome for his clients in every situation.

His areas of expertise include property, trusts and estates, relationship property and commercial law. He is experienced in resolving complex relationship property and trust matters. You can often find him working with clients on contracting out agreements and division of property following separation.

Isaac is tenacious and a champion of the people. His career highlight, despite acting in significant sized transactions, is helping a single mum negotiate settlement of a costly commercial rental dispute in a way that allowed her to wind up her business without the spectre of exorbitant penalties and focus on the raising of her young child.

His genuine interest in property makes him the person to talk to for sale and purchase advice or issues around property.

Isaac is a member of the Waikato New Lawyers Committee and during his time at Waikato University, he was the winner of the junior mooting trophy.

Email: isaac@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 595 0965

Simmi Singh

Simmi Singh

Associate

Simmi makes things happen.

A problem-solver who prides herself on efficiency, she is passionate about commercial law and is known for making commercial deals happen.

Simmi comes from a dispute resolution background, working predominately in commercial law and specialising in intellectual property rights. She is also a member of the Law Society Civil litigation committee, which works to improve the administration of civil justice in New Zealand.

While Simmi predominately advises clients on breach of contract and commercial issues, she has a diverse experience of the law and is driven by doing the right thing for her clients.

Simmi believes that for New Zealand to continue to lead the world in research and development, Kiwi’s need to own and guard their intellectual property.

Solutions focused, Simmi sees the law as a way to improve the lives of her clients.

Email: simmi@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 974 9179

Shannon Whyte

Shannon Whyte

Associate

As an Associate, Shannon’s diverse experience of the law works in her client’s favour. Shannon works with her clients on matters relating to relationship property, commercial law, corporate finance, property, trusts and estates.

Known for going above and beyond for her clients and having an eye for detail, Shannon uses the law to help her clients achieve their goals. Efficient and dedicated, Shannon will get you what you need, when you need it.

 Shannon has a strong interest in the community and believes that everyone should have the same access to legal advice, information, and support. She is passionate about initiatives that promote greater collaboration between the profession and law schools and is an active participant in the Waikato New Lawyers network.

Email: shannon@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 929 4304

Olivia Day

Olivia Day

Associate

Olivia specialises in employment law and is passionate about finding the best result for her clients.  

She is adept at drafting individual employment agreements and assisting in conducting effective restructures. She can also advise on personal grievances for both employers and employees.  

Known as a people person, Olivia’s diverse experience also includes property and commercial law and she has a particular passion for helping Kiwi families get on the property ladder. Olivia’s experience enables her to help first home buyers make the most of their Kiwisaver and Homestart grants to help them achieve their property goals. 

Olivia’s passion for finding the best outcome for her clients is what sets her apart.  

Email: olivia@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 974 9178

Ben Wong

Ben Wong

Associate

Ben sees the law as a way to help people succeed, no matter their situation or stage of life. Practising in all areas of commercial law and property law, Ben also advises clients on estates and disputes.

Known for his methodical approach, Ben works with clients to develop practical solutions that best suit their needs. If you ask him, one of the best things about working in law is the long-standing relationships you build with clients.

If you catch Ben wearing sneakers in the office, make sure you ask what they are. While they may just look like regular sneakers to most, Ben is a collector and his shoes will no doubt have a story.

Email: ben@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 595 0963

Gemma Martin

Gemma Martin

Senior Solicitor

Part of both the Property and Commercial teams, Gemma supports clients with navigating a range of complex issues. Her passion for business makes Gemma a skilled advisor with commercial contracts and disputes. A specialist in residential and commercial property transactions, she is also well-versed in property law. In addition, Gemma’s expertise extends to establishing wills and maintaining trusts.  

Driven and reliable, Gemma prides herself on working with her clients to achieve the best results. Her enthusiasm and empathetic nature, combined with her research approach, means no challenge is ever too great.

Gemma joined iCLAW as an office assistant and law clerk and has become a solicitor (and now Senior Solicitor) since completing her Bachelor of Laws with First Class Honours. She enjoys keeping fit and outside of work spends time at the gym or playing football.

Email: gemma@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 929 4479

Tyla Robinson

Tyla Robinson

Solicitor

First meeting the iCLAW team in 2018 while peddling Christmas cookies (don't ask her about it), Tyla is known for her willingness to take on any challenge, and her outgoing personality. Since joining the team in 2021, she has been focused on achieving exceptional results for her clients in both property and company law matters.

Adopting a client-centered approach, whether it's assisting clients in navigating complex corporate transactions or buying their first home, her knowledge and skill ensure that her clients receive tailored guidance through their legal matters. With a genuine passion for the law and a drive for excellence, Tyla approaches each matter with enthusiasm and unwavering determination. Her interest in company law allows her to provide comprehensive and insightful advice to individuals and organizations alike.

Tyla has also recently been appointed Chairperson of the Waikato Young Professionals committee, a non-profit group dedicated to running educational and networking events for Waikato professionals in the first years of their careers.

Outside of work, you'll find Tyla not far from a restaurant, clothing boutique or bookshop. While her storytelling may need some work, we trust Tyla's advice on where to eat and what to buy. She's also a sucker for roast potatoes, and never misses a Sunday meal with her family.

Email: tyla@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 929 4443

Tom Phillips

Tom Phillips

Solicitor

After graduating the University of Waikato in 2021, Tom moved up to Auckland and spent time working at a boutique property firm on Shortland Street in which he specialised in general property law and asset planning. In joining iCLAW, Tom is looking to broaden his horizons and delve into a wider range of legal practise and hopes to bring a hands on and pragmatic approach for his clients. When not getting stuck into the legal nitty gritty, you’ll find Tom either trying (and generally failing) to catch a wave, fishing for his golf ball in a water hazard, or climbing a mountain.

Email: tom@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 595 0967

Annabel Jordan

Annabel Jordan

Solicitor

Annabel joined iCLAW as a solicitor in July 2023.

Annabel graduated with a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Waikato – Te Piringa, Faculty of Law in 2022, and was admitted to the bar at the Hamilton High Court in 2023.

Annabel strives to provide quality advice to clients. She believes in the importance of building a strong relationship with clients and is dedicated to providing the knowledge and support needed to make informed decisions and reach the best possible outcomes for her clients.

Outside of work, Annabel enjoys staying active and spending time with friends and family.

Email: annabel@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 595 0962

Hannah Mills

Hannah Mills

Registered Legal Executive

32 settlements in one day?  No drama. Managing and facilitating the settlement of a 121-unit development in one day?  Easy.

Hannah has more than 12 years’ experience in the legal industry with expertise in civil litigation, private client, residential conveyancing, intellectual property, estates, commercial and residential developments, and commercial leases.  

Primarily working in the corporate commercial team, Hannah works alongside one of New Zealand’s leading residential developers assisting with land acquisition, sell down of units, facilitating development and construction finance, subdivision of land, and managing large scale settlements.  

Hannah is also the firm’s expert on residential tenancies.  As a trained property manager, Hannah is able to advise her clients on both the practical and legal realities of residential tenancies and tenant/landlord issues. Did we mention, she loves a challenge?

Email: hannah@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 929 4300

Niki Sullivan

Niki Sullivan

Registered Legal Executive

As a newly registered Legal Executive, Niki relishes working with clients in the property space, guiding first-home buyers through the intricacies of the property buying process and assisting clients that have bought and sold many times.

Having worked in the Trust Account and Administration team here at iCLAW and other law firms, she has a solid knowledge of all aspects of the firm. She has previously worked in finance teams for other large national companies. Her attention to detail is a skill she prides herself on.

Niki is a keen runner; you’ll often find her running the river paths and pavements of Hamilton CBD during her lunch breaks.

Email: Niki@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 595 0966

Lianna Jelaca

Lianna Jelaca

Registered Legal Executive

Lianna has recently joined the iCLAW team as a Legal Executive. 

Lianna comes to us with 7 years of experience in the criminal, youth and family sectors.  Having gained valuable experience in these areas, Lianna is committed to making a positive impact. 

Email: Lianna@iclaw.com

Phone: 07 971 9288

Stephanie Frith

Stephanie Frith

Trust Account Manager

Stephanie has over 25 years of experience working in law firms – from boutique firms in the south island to  large corporate firms in London. She currently supports the iCLAW team by managing the trust account and the firm’s AML/CFT compliance responsibilities. She enjoys spending time with her family and trail running.

Email: stephanie@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 929 4480

Fiona Morgan

Fiona Morgan

Executive Assistant

Fiona has joined the team with a background in Office Management/Personal Assistant within the construction industry.  Prior to this, Fiona spent 10 years cruising the Mediterranean, Caribbean and North Atlantic Seas working on private yachts.  She is excited to work at iCLAW and will be providing Owen Culliney with day-to-day support.  Fiona will be working alongside the partners and entire team to achieve the shared vision of the company.

Fiona loves all the things that being a Mum to two young boys brings! She also loves sampling new wines and a relaxing beach day with her Husband.

Email: fiona@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 595 0964

Rebecca Wilson

Rebecca Wilson

Compliance Administrator

Rebecca’s experience ranges from managing bars and restaurants, raising animals, and dabbling in the sciences, having completed a Genetics degree in 2016.

In her spare time Rebecca’s often gaming or hanging out with her mates.

Rebecca is currently studying Law and Computer Science at the University of Waikato, while working part time at iCLAW to assist with our compliance obligations and other administration tasks.

Email: Rebecca@iclaw.com

Phone: 07 929 4300

Jayde Kenny

Jayde Kenny

Business Manager

Jayde is a crucial part of the team and ensures our show is kept on the road. With more than 25 years experience in law firms, including as a qualified legal executive, Jayde works to support the iCLAW partners and ensure the smooth running of the office.  

Living on the other side of the Kaimais, Jayde works remotely from Papamoa. Her lack of proximity doesn’t curb her efficiency though, ask her and it’s done.  

Email: jayde@iclaw.com

Phone: (07) 929 4305

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Ellen Brooks

Administration Coordinator

Ellen has recently joined our team as our Administration Coordinator.

Email: Ellen@iclaw.com

Phone: 07 974 4846

Kari Benninghaus

Kari Benninghaus

AML Compliance Officer

Kari is a born and raised Canuck, who also lived in Okinawa, Japan, for four years before moving to NZ in 2019.

Kari’s experience with law began in university with her undergraduate in International Relations and International Human Rights Law, which extended to her role as a public servant for the Canadian government. There she worked on litigation files and developed policies for multiparty stakeholders concerning Indigenous issues, specifically with regard to conflict resolution, negotiation, mediation, restorative justice, and consultation and accommodation.

Kari is a detailed oriented, outdoorsy individual who loves exploring with her family and two young babies. She is a bonafide foodie and travel enthusiast who dabbles in art, language, and pottery.

Kari is thrilled to be a part of the iCLAW team. You can find her with the red hair; happy to answer any of your questions about Customer Due Diligence.

Email: kari@iclaw.com

Sandi Purcell

Sandi Purcell

Office Manager, Waihi

Born and raised in Waihi, Sandi brings 33 years of knowledge and experience as a former Registrar specializing in the Criminal, Youth and Family Court Jurisdictions through the Ministry of Justice. 

Sandi prides herself on her close working relationships and rapport with the Judiciary during that time.

Sandi retired from the Ministry in 2019 and has since gained 4 years of Legal Administration and Practice Management experience with local Waihi law firms before joining iCLAW. 

Sandi is passionate about providing professionalism and support to our firm, clients and community.

Whanau is very important to Sandi - where life begins, and aroha never ends.

Email: sandi@iclaw.com

Phone: 07 863 7530

Sharlene Bhatia

Sharlene Bhatia

Reception & Events Manager

Meet Sharlene.  She is the friendly face who greets you when you visit our Hamilton office.  

 

Sharlene is a mother of two and enjoys dabbling in painting from time to time, walking her dog, and a good glass of Wine.  She has brought a vast range of skills to the team from her background in areas of Exhibition Event Organization, such as our local ‘Waikato Home and Garden Show’, Restaurant Management in both Hamilton and Auckland, Health Research on behalf of Health NZ and a well-kept secret (until now) is that she has her Commercial Helicopter Pilots license.  

 

Whether she is offering you a hot Cuppa (or a glass of something special out of our wine cabinet), assisting our team with reporting and bookkeeping, or organising our social events - she is determined to deliver a first-class experience and make you feel at home the ‘iCLAW’ way. 

Email: sharlene@iclaw.com

Phone: 07 929 4300

Macy Bruce

Macy Bruce

Receptionist/Office Assistant

Macy completed her Legal Executive Diploma in 2022 and is now assisting in the day to day running of the iCLAW | The Mount Lawyers office.

Email: macy@mountlawyers.nz

Phone: 07 575 4045

Richard Briggs

Richard Briggs

Chief Executive

Richard, a high-impact globally experienced Chief Executive, brings over 20 years of strategic leadership across both the private and public sectors. His track record includes executive leadership experience across complex organisations, including multinational companies, local government, and central government.

As an independent consultant over the past two years, Richard focused on strategy development and execution, best practice governance frameworks, corporate structuring, and executive coaching.

Prior to this Richard was the Chief Executive of Hamilton City Council, leading a team of 1,200 plus in a complex multi-stakeholder environment to make a positive, significant, and enduring impact on the Hamilton community. Richard has also worked for Fonterra across several senior commercial roles in New Zealand and globally.

Richard is a big thinker who is passionate about building high-performing and strategically impactful businesses. “I was attracted to iCLAW because of their absolute focus on building high-impact individuals and teams, and their track record of delivering world-class service, advice and insights that unlock strategic value for clients,” says Richard.

Bringing Richard onboard as our Chief Executive will propel us toward our ambitions of building a world-class high-impact, high-performing law firm that will ensure our clients, employees and communities prosper well into the future.

Email: richard@iclaw.com

Phone: 07 929 4300