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Deirdre Watson has over 25 years experience as a Barrister, specialising in franchising, employment and estate related matters.

Franchising: Deirdre is a recognised expert in franchising. She has acted on behalf of both franchisors and franchisees in numerous matters, including breach notices, agreements, enforcement of restraint of trade clauses, Fair Trading Act and misrepresentation claims, good faith, misuse of confidential information and other post termination disputes. Deirdre is a highly sought after legal advisor in franchising matters and, in particular, as a trouble shooter in the more difficult franchising cases. As Vice Chair of the New Zealand Franchise Association, a regular speaker at Franchise legal Seminars, a regular writer on legal issues affecting franchising, and lecturer at Auckland University on Franchise issues, she holds considerable expertise in this field. 

Employment: Deirdre has acted for both employers and employees in numerous personal grievances, redundancies, employment agreement reviews, restructuring, disciplinary investigations, and restraint of trade disputes. She has appeared in the Employment Relations Authority and Employment Court and as Counsel in employment mediations. Deirdre is focussed on securing an economic outcome for clients and is aware of the stress employees are under when they are facing dismissal or other actions affecting their employment.

Wills and estates: Deirdre acts a range of contested and more complicated wills and estate issues, including applications to validate unsigned wills, trust disputes and Family Protection Act claims.

Mediation: Deirdre is passionate about Mediation. As well as practicing as a Barrister, she is a Mediator, able to accept instructions in a broad range of civil and commercial disputes, including commercial, contract, franchise, property, employment, estate and trust. As a lawyer with many years’ experience in mediations, Deirdre believes that most disputes are capable of settlement through a mediation process but equally understands that settlements do not happen unless the needs of both parties are met. Deirdre has reasonable rates for mediation work, including a half day rate.


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