About James Wilkinson
Career to date
James undertakes a broad range of residential and commercial property work, and has a particular interest in trust law.
Before joining Gibson Sheat, James was a property partner at firms in Wellington and Auckland (and continues to act for clients in both cities). He has significant experience in a wide range of personal client work, including residential property, trusts and estate planning, and commercial property work, including sales and purchases, financing and leasing. James is a trust law specialist with a particular interest in the area of trust law reform.
- Advising on a range of residential and commercial property issues.
- Advising on a range of commercial lease issues.
- Establishing family and charitable trusts.
- Restructuring and winding up trusts.
- Advising trustees and executors on their duties.
- Acting as trustee and executor for a number of trusts and estates.
- Preparing complex wills and powers of attorney.
Professional Associations and Community Organisations
- Member of the international Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners
- Member of the Property Law Section of the NZLS
- Chair of the St Oran's College Board of Trustees.
My approach to working with my clients
My goal is to give clients peace of mind that their legal affairs are in order. I am an approachable, down-to-earth lawyer, with a diplomatic and meticulous approach to the practice of law. I particularly enjoy the problem solving aspects of my work, and clients tell me I have a knack at explaining complex legal concepts in an easy to understand way.
Most rewarding experience I've had at work
My most rewarding experiences have been helping young couples buy their first homes, assisting them to understand and navigate a process they’ve never dealt with before. Right through from helping them put in an offer for a property, understanding all the paperwork they need to sign and getting assistance from Kiwisaver funds or family, to hearing their excitement when they get the keys to their home on settlement.
The best piece of advice I've ever been given
“Do it once, and do it right”
What stimulates me
I enjoy helping people, and the wide variety of my practice – every day I’m working on something new, learning something different, and meeting new and interesting people.
What I enjoy outside of work
Away from the office, I enjoy spending time with my young family, travelling and cooking.
If I wasn’t a lawyer I’d…
be a magician. I usually have a trick or two in my pocket, so feel free to ask for a minor miracle.