Find out who we are.

Joanna Pidgeon

Joanna Pidgeon

Joanna Pidgeon is a commercial property and business law specialist and the founder of Pidgeon Law. She is results and solutions orientated and client focused in the advice she gives.

Joanna acts for many individuals and small, medium and large sized businesses. She has a particular interest in property and advises on projects including apartment buildings, terraced housing developments, hotel and resort developments, commercial, office and retail building. She handles all aspects of fee simple, unit title, leasehold and cross lease subdivisions, as well as dealing with cross lease issues. Joanna is experienced in leasing matters representing both landlords and tenants and advises on green leasing, together with building and body corporate management issues.

Joanna acts for developers in the acquisition of land, obtaining resource and building consents, construction, subdivision and on sale of completed developments. She is an expert in the Unit Titles Act 2010, and issues relating to the rules, administration and management of body corporates. She is experienced in sales on builder's terms, construction contracts and related finance issues, and in residential conveyancing. She often acts for financiers in property matters, including development projects, and in mortgagee sales.

Joanna often acts in the sale or acquisition of business and advises on commercial contracts. She provides structuring advice, and also advises on insolvency issues. Related to this is her practice in asset planning.

Joanna regularly presents at seminars and conferences on matters including Leasing, Unit Titles, Property Law Act and Residential Tenancies Act among other topics. She also regularly provides advice to other practitioners in these areas. Joanna accepts instructions as an expert witness in property matters.

Joanna is a member of the New Zealand Law Society Property Law Section Land Titles Committee and the New Zealand Law Society CLE Property Law Consultative Group.

Joanna is the President of Auckland District Law Society (ADLS). She has formerly chaired the ADLS Property Disputes Committee and is still a member of their Property Law Committee, and the ADLS lease form drafting subcommittee. Joanna has spearheaded the ADLSI’s campaign for legislation change in the area of cross leases, and has submitted on Unit Title Reform on behalf of ADLS.

Joanna is a member of Auckland Women Lawyers Association. She was a member of the 2020 Conveyancing Workgroup. In 2011, Joanna was awarded a St Cuthbert’s College Old Girls’ Association Making Her Mark Leadership Award.

Joanna is the Deputy Chair and a Trustee of the Auckland City Mission, and chairs their Property Committee.  She was previously a trustee of the Selwyn Foundation for 8 years and is a former director of the New Zealand Mint.

Liza Fry-Irvine

Liza Irvine

Liza Fry-Irvine joined Pidgeon Law in July 2010, having come from a highly regarded Auckland city law firm. She joined us as an Associate and brings a broad range of property law and commercial experience. Clients value Liza’s interpersonal skills and her ability to provide practical advice.

Liza provides advice on residential, commercial and rural conveyancing transactions, property financing, title and ownership matters, subdivisions, commercial and residential leasing, property development, hotel franchising and estate planning including trusts and wills. Her clients have included local and overseas individuals, developers, landlords, property investors, trusts, business owners, real estate agents, property managers and Body Corporate Managers.

Liza also has specialist legal expertise in unit title and body corporate matters and the Unit Titles Act 2010 (which replaced the Unit Titles Act 1972 on 20 June 2011). She provides advice to Bodies Corporate and their committees, individual unit owners, Body Corporate Managers, building managers, vendors, purchasers, developers and surveyors on all aspects of unit titles, management, maintenance and repairs, compliance with the old and new Acts, Body Corporate rules and Body Corporate Manager service contracts.

Liza’s interest in the unit titles area has led her to become an expert in the new Unit Titles Act 2010 and the transition from the 1972 Act. She has written and presented seminars on the new Act, Body Corporate Rules and unit title conveyancing to members of the Auckland District Law Society, real estate agents, property investors and Body Corporate Managers, as well as the New Zealand Society 2012 Property Law Conference and 2013 one day conference on UTA matters. She has also presented on survey aspects of the Unit Titles Act 2010 for the New Zealand Institute of Surveyors at their local 2009 and 2010 conferences and in August 2011 she co-presented a seminar roadshow on the new Act for the Institute around the South and North Islands. Liza has written submissions on the new Act and various articles in this area. She has contributed to her client's own newsletters on the changes in the Act, reviewed the Brookers Unit Titles Handbook, and contributed to the Surveyor’s Quarterly magazine.

Soon after the commencement of the new Unit Titles Act 2010, the Auckland District Law Society invited Liza to prepare a scoping report on the drafting of model rules for different types of unit title developments that could be adopted by Bodies Corporate under the new Act. The Society then asked Liza to draft three sets of model rules for residential, commercial/industrial and mixed use developments to be available as precedent Operational Rules for sale to solicitors, Bodies Corporate, unit owners, Body Corporate Managers and all other sectors of the unit titles industry nationwide. She was also invited to present at the annual Tenancy Tribunal Adjudicator's conference on the new Act in late 2011.

Liza also advises real estate agents on compliance issues and has made written contributions to the REINZ magazine and seminars for agents in senior management roles on the deposit regime, commissions and selling leaky buildings. She also has a particular expertise in the Residential Tenancies Act 1986 and its 2010 amendments, and has written articles and presented on this topic for members of the Auckland District Law Society and property managers.

Liza has excellent research and opinion writing skills which are particularly useful when dealing with complicated property issues. She has also contributed to expert evidence opinions for insurance companies and other legal practitioners on conveyancing and property financing matters.

Liza is a member of the Auckland District Law Society Property Law Committee and Documents and Precedents Committee, as well as the Auckland Womens’ Lawyers Association.

In her spare time Liza can usually be found doing 1 of 2 things, spending time with her husband James and their children Zoe and Will, or orchestrating her next physical challenge. Her favourite challenge so far was being crowned a first time “Ironman” after crossing the finishing line at the New Zealand Ironman in Taupo in March 2010.

Jeremy Whyte

Jeremy is a Senior Solicitor with Pidgeon Law and joined the Pidgeon Law Team in November 2015. Jeremy practices in the residential and commercial property areas together with unit titles, leasing, banking and finance, subdivisions, company and estate planning.
Jeremy values the relationships created with each client and enjoys gaining a thorough understanding of how their business operates in order to achieve the best possible result for a client's individual needs. As well as advising in the unit titles area, Jeremy is the Chairperson of his own Body Corporate which is currently undergoing a remediation project. Jeremy studied towards a Bachelor of Laws at Auckland University of Technology and is in the process of completing the co-operative education component of a Bachelor of Business majoring in Accounting. After graduating, Jeremy worked for a law firm in Taranaki before commencing work at Pidgeon Law. In his spare time Jeremy enjoys travel, keeping fit at the gym and squash court and socialising with friends and family.

Ben Thomson

Ben joined Pidgeon Law in July 2016.  He was admitted to practice law in England & Wales in 2011, and was admitted as a Barrister and Solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand in September 2016.  Born in Wales, Ben played professional rugby for a number of years but following a series of injuries he moved into the legal profession.  Ben practiced as a solicitor  in the UK prior to making the permanent move to New Zealand in 2013.  Before joining Pidgeon Law Ben managed the Auckland District Law Society's widely used suite of legal precedents including the Agreement for Sale and Purchase of Real Estate and the Commercial Deed of Lease. In that role Ben worked on numerous legislative submissions to Parliament  on topics such as the Land Transfer Bill and Residential Land Withholding Tax as well as frequently engaging with key government departments in the areas of property and commercial law.   In his spare time Ben can normally be found at Riverhead Forrest riding  his mountain bike, playing 7-a-side football or closely following the up's and down's of the Welsh national rugby team.


Alex Sheehan

Alex is a Solicitor who joined Pidgeon Law in 2015 after graduating from the University of Auckland, where he completed a Bachelor of Laws with Honours and a Bachelor of Commerce, double majoring in Economics and Management Studies. Alex was admitted to the bar in 2016. Alex’s interests within law are wide ranging, including property and commercial law. In his spare time, he is probably planning his next overseas adventure, wine tasting or socialising with friends.

Stephanie Aquilina-Little

Stephanie Aquilina-Little is a law graduate who joined Pidgeon Law in 2015.  She has recently completed a Bachelor of Laws degree at the University of Auckland.  Her interests lie in property and international law.  Stephanie’s background includes various roles in tourism and teaching; which saw her living with her family in France for a number of  years.  Stephanie is a committee member of the Auckland Women Lawyers Association.

Eugenia Woo

Eugenia Woo is a law graduate who joined Pidgeon Law in 2016. She has completed a Bachelor of Laws degree at the University of Auckland, and is currently working towards being admitted to the bar. She has has a keen interest in commercial law and the intersection of law and technology. She is also passionate about contributing to non-profit organisations and has a background in the dual industries of website consulting and journalism. Eugenia has lived and studied in Singapore, the United Kingdom and Australia, and strives to bring an international perspective to her approach to property law. Eugenia has professional written fluency in Mandarin Chinese.

Philip Hardiman 

Kimberly Knox

Philip is Joanna Pidgeon’s husband. As practice manager his role is management of all back office and support functions at Pidgeon Law.

A qualified accountant (ACA – NZICA)  Philip has experience in finance, management and financial accounting, risk management, business consulting, process re-engineering, and operations management. Previous roles include finance manager for Genesis Energy, finance manager for Sitel, global assurance manager for Fonterra, and senior manager at Ernst & Young.

As Pidgeon Law's practice manager his role is the delivery of:

    - Investment and enabling growth strategy
    - Firm financial and business reporting
    - Firm working capital and cash flow management
    - A key contributor in the review of staff recruitment, performance, remuneration and development
    - Budgets, Forecasts and Actual financial reports
    - Other day to day firm administration activities