Mark Colthart

Present Position

Barrister & Arbitrator

Professional Experience

Mark is a Barrister and Arbitrator specialising in commercial litigation and arbitration, property disputes, and construction law.

Mark graduated with Bachelor of Law and Bachelor of Arts degrees from the University of Canterbury (Christchurch) in 1993. He was admitted as a Barrister & Solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand in 1994, and has over 20 years litigation, arbitration and mediation experience.

In 2001 Mark completed a post-graduate degree in law, graduating with a Masters in Law (Honours) from the University of Auckland.

In 2012 Mark was admitted as a Fellow of the Arbitrators’ and Mediators’ Institute of New Zealand (AMINZ), and as a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb).

In 2014 Mark was elected to the Council of AMINZ.

Mark is one of the founding members of FortyEight Shortland Barristers, in the Vero Centre at 48 Shortland Street, in the heart of Auckland’s legal and financial district.

Career Summary

Since he was admitted to the bar in 1994 Mark has appeared in all of the major Courts and Tribunals in New Zealand, including as lead counsel in trials in the District and High Courts, and in appeals to the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. He regularly appears as counsel in commerical arbitrations, adjudications, and mediations, and acts as Arbitrator and Adjudicator in commercial and construction disputes

Mark has specialist expertise in the areas of commercial litigation, property, and construction law.

As a commercial litigator he has represented some of New Zealand's leading companies in a wide range of commercial disputes. He regularly appears in the High Court in significant commercial litigation, including contract and tort claims, Companies Act and Securities Act disputes, Fair Trading Act claims, insolvency and banking litigation, injunction and search order proceedings, specific performance proceedings, and other high dollar value disputes.

In the area of property and construction law Mark regularly advises and represents some of New Zealand's most significant construction companies, property developers, and other professionals in the building and construction industry. He has extensive experience as counsel in arbitrations and adjudications, and advises parties on construction law and contractual issues. His arbitration practice also includes appointment as Arbitrator in commercial disputes, and as Adjudicator in adjudications under Construction Contracts Act.

Also within the field of construction law, Mark regularly represents parties, including home owners, developers, builders, architects and designers, and other building professionals in “leaky building” claims in the Courts and the Weathertight Homes Tribunal.

Mark is a Fellow (Arbitration) and Council Member of the Arbitrators’ and Mediators’ Institute of New Zealand, and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (London). He is the convener of the Auckland District Law Society Property Disputes Committee. He has presented widely on litigation, property and construction law issues.

Mark also has a growing interest and client following in wine industry law. He advises some of New Zealand's most well known wine producers on a range of commercial issues, including international distribution contracts, intellectual property, liquor licencing and advertising standards.


AMINZ Council Member 2014-2018.

Deputy Director of Professional Legal Studies (Arbitration) AMINZ 2016-present.

Convener of Auckland District Law Society Property Disputes Committee 2016-present.

NZLS Friends Panel Member 2012-2016.

Speciality Areas

Building & Construction Law

Property & Real Estate Law

Contract Law

Commercial Disputes

Company Law & Shareholders Disputes


B.A. / LLB (University of Canterbury 1993)

LLM (Hons) (University of Auckland 2001)

FAMINZ (Arb) 2012

FCIArb 2012