Fred Ward




Fred brings many years of experience to his role as a partner in our Tax team. His practice has a particular focus on corporate finance work, mergers and acquisitions, and structured investment products. Offering both tax advice and litigation services, Fred is a highly regarded tax specialist.


With more than 20 years’ with the partnership, Fred’s work has involved offering clients a broad range of taxation services, including advice on cross-border financing structures, mergers and acquisitions and dealing with the Inland Revenue at all levels of the investigation process, including negotiating settlements.

His experience includes advising:

  • Trustpower on its demerger through a court scheme of arrangement which saw the creation of two listed companies. The demerger was structured as a distribution of the demerged entities upon liquidation, and has been implemented without enabling legislation.
  • CBA, ASB, ANZ Banking Group and ANZ on Basel III compliant Tier 2 and Additional Tier 1 issues.
  • Auckland Transition Agency on its merger of local authorities to form Auckland's 'Super City'.
  • Fonterra Co-Operative Group on its Trading Among Farmers project and the establishment of the Fonterra Shareholders' Fund (FSF). The FSF was the first multi-rate PIE to be listed.
  • ASB Bank and ANZ Bank New Zealand on the establishment of their covered bond programmes.
  • Commonwealth Bank of Australia in relation to the PERLs IX, PERLs VIII and PERLs VI capital raising transactions.
  • Rabobank on the establishment of its cash PIE and wrap platform.
  • ANZ Bank New Zealand in relation to the sale of UDC Finance.
  • Lion in relation to a number of acquisitions, including Panhead and Wither Hills.
  • Pacific Equity Partners in relation to the acquisition of Academic Colleges Group and sale of Tegel and Griffin's Foods.
  • Auckland Airport in relation to the acquisition of Queensland Airport acquisition and related rights issue.
  • KordaMentha in relation to the receivership of Pumpkin Patch.
  • Trustpower in relation to litigation concerning the deductibility of feasibility expenditure in the Supreme Court (Trustpower Limited v CIR (2016) NZTC 22,061).
  • Vector in the Court of Appeal in relation to the capital treatment of a lump sum payment received for infrastructure access (CIR v Vector [2016] NZCA 296).
  • Various individuals in relation to asset planning on immigration to and emigration from New Zealand.


LLB (Hons), BCom, University of Canterbury.
LLM, University of Michigan.


Fred has been a partner with Russell McVeagh since 1995.

He is a member of the International Fiscal Association and co-authored the New Zealand Securitisation chapter for the 2018 Chambers and Partners Global Practice Guides publication.

Fred is ranked as a leading tax lawyer by Chambers Asia-Pacific, Asialaw Profiles 2018, Legal 500, and as a leading adviser by Tax Controversy Leaders (2017 Edition). He was awarded Lawyer of the Year in Tax Law by Best Lawyers® 2020 New Zealand guide.

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