Sports and Major Events

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Sports and major events are central to the day-to-day lives of many New Zealanders, whether they are watching the game on TV or catching their favourite tournament; we are all constantly engaging with these industries.

Public exposure is essential to entertaining and informing people, but with this exposure comes a significant amount of scrutiny. Businesses, organisations and individuals need lawyers who understand the sports and media landscape, and who are as passionate about their industry as they are.

We help sports and major events organisations navigate complex regulatory environments and policy frameworks. Whatever the challenge presenting our clients: be it the need for broadcasting, regulatory or corporate advice; a tax matter; or the raising of finance or capital; we can provide the advice to overcome it.

We were the official legal partner to the 2011 Rugby World Cup and we continue to advise a number of leading New Zealand and international agencies on issues arising with sports and major events.

Sport raises a number of unique legal issues – from the structure of the employment/contractor relationship to the management of complex on-field and off-field disciplinary processes. Our Sports law team has worked closely with players, sports organisations and in tribunals, to establish the experience we are recognised for today.

The commercialisation of sport means that the success of a competition or event may depend on the ability to protect the reputation and intellectual property of an event and its competitors. We are experts in the application of the Major Events Management Act 2007 and the interface with sponsorship arrangements. We have also developed practical ways of enforcing rights in this area.

Our experience includes:

  • Official law firm for Rugby World Cup 2011.
  • Acting for World Rugby (previously the International Rugby Board) on a range of matters, including contents rights and anti-counterfeiting matters.
  • Providing tax advice to a number of global sports organisations.
  • Advising on a wide range of matters for local and national sports organisations, including commercial (such as corporate structure and constitution) issues both in New Zealand, and overseas and employment.
  • Advising on regulatory and discipline systems for anti-doping matters.
  • Undertaking reviews of sports organisations, including for disciplinary matters.
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