Special Counsel, Wellington

Nicola Cuervo

Nicola Cuervo


Nicola specialises in health law, information privacy, managing complaints, employment and industrial relations, and dispute resolution, and has particular expertise in the public health sector.

She has held senior in-house legal roles in the public and health sectors, and has a strong sense of what our clients want from their legal advisors.  Recent achievements include her work in Government Inquiry into Havelock North Drinking Water and as counsel in a high-profile High Court defamation trial.

As a health lawyer, Nicola specialises treatment issues (including consent to treatment, competency issues and mental health), health information privacy, HDC investigations, Coronial inquiries, in managing complaints and adverse events, and the regulation of health professionals.

As an employment lawyer, Nicola is an expert in disciplinary processes, bullying and harassment investigations, restructuring, personal grievances, and alternative dispute resolution.

Nicola has significant in-house experience, having been Principal Legal Advisor, Employee Relations at New Zealand Police and General Counsel at the national office of New Zealand's District Health Boards.

In addition to her New Zealand experience, Nicola has worked in London as in-house counsel to investment banks.  She has graduate qualifications in viticulture, wine science, and Spanish.

Work highlights

Representing the Attorney-General

on behalf of New Zealand Police in a high-profile High Court defamation trial

Representing the District Health Board

at an Inquest in the Coroner’s Court

Undertaking a three-month secondment

to a Government Department as senior in-house counsel

Appearing before the Government Inquiry

into Havelock North Drinking Water for Hawke's Bay District Health Board

Advising public and private health providers

on a broad range of issues including health information privacy issues, Health and Disability Commissioner investigations and reports, mental health, provision of services, and employment issues

Representing clients

at mediation and in the Employment Relations Authority 

Alternate contacts

Hamish Kynaston

Partner, Wellington

Hamish specialises in employment relations, litigation, health law, health and safety, and education…

Email Hamish Kynaston

Peter Chemis

Partner, Wellington

Peter specialises in employment law, industrial relations and related areas, and leads Buddle Findlay’s national employment team…

Email Peter Chemis

Holly Hedley

Consultant, Wellington

Holly specialises in health, employment and privacy law. Her health expertise includes advising on treatment and consent…

Email Holly Hedley