Richard Belcher

Richard is an Associate in the Litigation & Dispute Resolution team

Richard is an experienced advocate. He regularly assists clients with complex civil and public-law issues, in addition to regulatory investigations and prosecutions. He has particular expertise in civil litigation, insurance, health and safety, professional discipline, regulatory compliance, and trade and maritime disputes.

He has appeared as counsel in various Tribunals, the District Court, the High Court and the Court of Appeal.  As a former Crown prosecutor, he conducted jury trials involving serious criminal offending and regularly appeared at bail, pre-trial and sentencing hearings, and conviction, sentence and bail appeals.

Richard has also provided advice, and acted as counsel, to various regulatory bodies including:

  • Maritime New Zealand (in prosecutions under both the Maritime Transport Act and the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015);
  • The Real Estate Agents Authority (in unsatisfactory conduct and penalty appeals, and disciplinary prosecution of misconduct in the New Zealand Real Estate Agents Disciplinary Tribunal);
  • The Teaching Council (prosecuting charges of misconduct and serious misconduct in the New Zealand Teachers Disciplinary Tribunal);
  • The Plumbers, Gasfitters and Drainlayers Board (prosecuting both criminal and disciplinary offences); and
  • The Royal Society for the Protection of Animals (prosecution of animal welfare offending).

Richard is a member of Maritime Law Association of Australia and New Zealand (MLAANZ) and New Zealand Insurance Law Association (NZILA).

He has also assisted in drafting the New Zealand’s contributions to Lexology’s “Getting the Deal Through: Shipping” and the Shipping Law Review.

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Examples of work completed by Richard include:

Hammond v Real Estate Agents Authority [2020] NZREADT 49;

Corless v R [2020] NZHC 3208;

Real Estate Agents Authority v Catley [2020] NZHC 1904, (2020) 25 PRNZ 380;

Plumbers, Gasfitters and Drainlayers Board v Muggleston [2020] NZDC 11278;

Maritime New Zealand v Fullers Group Ltd [2020] NZDC 10157;

Mackisack v Police [2020] NZHC 57;

Complaints Assessment Committee 521 v Wright [2019] NZREADT 49; [2019] NZREADT 56;

Complaints Assessment Committee v Teacher A [2018] NZTDT 53 (1 May 2019);

Dowson v Real Estate Agents Authority [2019] NZREADT 15;

Maritime New Zealand v Hutchings [2019] NZDC 15623;

H v Family Court [2018] NZHC 3459, [2019] NZAR 344;

Friends of the Auckland Art Gallery Acquisitions Trust v Friends of the Auckland Art Gallery Inc [2018] NZHC 1768, [2018] NZAR 1265;

Cribb v FM Custodians Ltd [2018] NZCA 183, [2018] NZAR 1055.


Insights & Opinion / Richard Belcher

2021 Maritime Arbitration Enforcement Series.
The Hesketh Henry Trade and Transport team are proud contributors of the SCMA (Singapore Chamber of Maritime Arbitration) 2021 Maritime Arbitration Enforcement Series.  Authors Simon Cartwright, Part...
20.12.2021 Posted in Trade and Transport
Covid-19 Risk Assessment – Vaccines only part of the solution
Vaccine mandates have been the “hot topic” in the news recently.  However, it has become clear that vaccines are not a silver bullet and relying on vaccination alone to address the risk of Covid-...
01.12.2021 Posted in COVID-19 & Employment & Health & Safety
Parliament to address Air Pollution from Ships, Finally!
Update: The Maritime Transport (MARPOL) Amendment Bill underwent its third reading on 9 November 2021.  Having successfully progressed through its third reading, it now awaits royal assent.  This sh...
11.11.2021 Posted in Climate Change & Trade and Transport
Home Alone? MBIE forced to reconsider home isolation application
In Bolton v The Chief Executive of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment [2021] NZHC 2897 the High Court set aside a decision of MBIE denying an application for MIQ exemption.
04.11.2021 Posted in COVID-19 & Disputes
Health and Safety Reform: Increased Regulation of Plant and Structures on the Horizon
The Government has announced that it intends to release draft plant and structures regulations in early 2022, with new regulations expected to be in place later next year.
28.10.2021 Posted in Construction & Health & Safety
Maritime New Zealand v Genera Limited:  Health & Safety Prosecution in International Waters
In the first case of its kind, Genera Limited has been convicted of an offence under the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSWA) in relation to an incident that occurred in international waters. The...
18.08.2021 Posted in Disputes & Health & Safety & Trade and Transport
Subcontractor entitled to raise set-off claim against principal’s warranty claim
A recent High Court case examined the all too common situation where a contractor goes into liquidation, but there are unresolved matters on a construction project affecting both the principal and sub...