James ['Jim'] Farmer practises as a barrister from Chambers in Auckland.
He is a Queen’s Counsel, admitted to practise as such in New Zealand, New South Wales, Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory. In addition, he has been admitted to appear on a case by case basis as a non-resident Queen’s Counsel in Hong Kong. He has University degrees from the University of Auckland – Bachelor of Laws and Master of Laws with First Class Honours – and from the University of Cambridge – Ph.D, for which he was awarded the Yorke Prize. He has held academic positions at Auckland, including an appointment as a part-time Professor of Law, and Cambridge, where he was a Fellow of Gonville and Caius College. His field of practice covers all areas of commercial law and public law. He is particularly known for the many appearances that he has made as counsel in competition (antitrust) law cases. More...

Latest Legal CommentarIES

Will the Proposed Cannabis Legislation Achieve its "Overarching Objective" of Reducing the Harms Associated with Cannabis Use?

What does the proposed Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill (to be voted for or against in the Referendum) provide?  More...

The Debate Continues - Virtual Hearings or Real Hearings


With his permission, I have provided a link above to the website that Dr David Harvey, former District Court Judge, operates. This is mandatory reading, though I remain convinced that we should not compromise the essential elements of the in-court, oral, adversarial hearing. David’s contrary position, put in delightful language, is:

“Although the panoply of justice and the ‘majesty of the law’ aspect of public performance may serve some ceremonial or symbolic purpose they are not necessary to the proper and efficient delivery of justice services.”

That forces me to confess that I personally opposed the abolition of the wearing of wigs and bans in court. Why? To me, they did indeed symbolise the majesty of the law or, to put it more prosaically, they served as a reminder to everyone present - litigants, witnesses and counsel – that this was a serious forum and occasion where truth, honesty and fairness were on trial.

Jim Farmer

1 May 2020 More...

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