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David Caldwell

David Caldwell Bridgeside Chambers

Qualifications: LLB, Dip. Hort
Admitted: 1989



Mobile: +64 21 221 4113


P.O. Box 3180
Christchurch 8140

David has over 25 years litigation and advocacy experience. He specialises in resource management, local government and employment law and has earned an excellent reputation in those areas. David also advises employers on Health and Safety matters, particularly on investigations. David has significant experience in civil litigation.

David’s approach to litigation and disputes is solution-focused. He is driven by the need to obtain the best possible outcomes for clients, whether that be by way of mediation, negotiation or formal court proceedings.

David is also an experienced and qualified independent hearings commissioner (chair endorsed) and has provided independent commissioner services to territorial and regional councils on a range of matters. This gives him insight to the decision-maker role, which is valuable to local authorities and resource users alike.


Resource management and Local Government

David has practised in these areas since 2003. His experience encompasses both resource management and local government law. His has numerous appearances in the Environment Court and the High Court in respect of resource consent appeals, district and regional plan appeals, water conservation orders, enforcement and declaratory proceedings. He has advised both local authorities and those affected by their decisions on a range of local government matters including bylaws, consultation obligations, Reserves Act issues, road stopping, building issues and financial contributions.

He has represented various groups and applicants including iwi groups, developers, infrastructure providers and local government.

David is called on to provide independent advice, often by way of peer review, on controversial matters impacting on local authorities.

Independent Hearings Commissioner

David has been involved as either a panel member or chair of a number of hearings, including an application for a Reserves Act exchange, private plan change applications and various resource consent applications including those for land use, discharge and irrigation applications.

Employment Law

David has acted for employers and employees in various types of employment environments and practised exclusively in this area for a number of years.

Clients represented include national corporates and individuals. Examples include professional service firms, mining companies, manufacturers, primary industry employers, secondary industries (such as meat works), a trade union, human resource agencies, a state owned enterprise, hotels and a regulatory services provider.

Examples of recent work include:

  • providing employment advice to a regulatory services company on restructuring; -providing employment advice and representation for a significant secondary producer on restructuring;
  • advising on and preparing submissions to Select Committee on proposed health and safety/workplace law reform changes;
  • advising a major corporate on health and safety matters, including directors liability, assisting through investigation processes and providing general employment advice.

Civil Litigation

David has many years of experience in civil litigation, including insurance issues, estates, building disputes, property disputes and general commercial litigation.

He is also available to act as an arbitrator or mediator.