“I will continue to empower and encourage my staff to perform at their best as I have done for the last decade. I will continue to advocate for my clients, embracing new technology and being open to business and industry changes”
Dixon Insurance Services
James Cochrane is a partner in the Dispute Resolution & Litigation and Web3 & Digital Assets teams at Lane Neave, who is dedicated to achieving the highest quality outcomes.
Having worked on some of New Zealand’s most notable insolvencies and being involved in a range of high-profile commercial and insurance-related matters, Cochrane has a wealth and breadth of expertise in insolvency, recoveries, insurance and general commercial litigation.
He is also highly passionate, if not obsessed, about Web3, blockchain and digital assets. He has advised various clients interested in this emerging technology, including private wealth clients concerning litigation, tax, relationship property and estate planning, and businesses about NFTs, gaming, crypto-mining, capital raising, structuring, decentralised autonomous organisations, and the regulatory landscape.
“The crypto specialty has grown because I am especially interested in the topic and want to do more legal work in relation to it,” he says.
Cochrane has earned a reputation for proactively identifying potential issues and providing practical solutions. He is widely recognised for his broad range of experience, skills, interpersonal communication and connections to assist clients in navigating complex commercial disputes.
Obtaining a master’s degree in law with first-class honours from the University of Auckland comes a close second to becoming a partner at Lane Neave as something about which Cochrane is most proud.
Maintaining work-life balance is challenging in Cochrane’s fast-paced career, but he has achieved harmony by setting clear boundaries. “I work very hard during the week for my clients so that the weekends can be dedicated to family and friends,” he says.
Cochrane is involved with various industry organisations including:
• being an executive council member for BlockchainNZ, a prominent New Zealand industry group for digital assets, and leading up its legal working group
• being a member of RITANZ, a leading insolvency industry group
• being a founding member of NZICM, an industry group for credit management professionals
He also helped establish and is a former trustee of the Debt Relief Foundation Charitable Trust, a related organisation of Debtfix, a corporate social responsibility (CSR) / environmental, social & governance (ESG) company, unique to the New Zealand marketplace, that provides holistic, sustainable, debt solutions for individuals with multiple problem debts.
Doyles has ranked Cochrane as a leading insolvency and restructuring lawyer in New Zealand for 2022.
Level 8, Vero Centre, 48 Shortland Street, Auckland 1010
09 300 6263
“To be able to give back to the community is rewarding and fulfilling. I am honoured to be in a position where I can raise funds for those less fortunate and in need”
Dixon Insurance Services
2005–2011: Solicitor/Associate at Kensington Swan (now Dentons)
2010: LLM with first-class honours in commercial law at Auckland University
Senior Solicitor at Bell Gully
Senior Solicitor/Senior Associate at Fee Langstone
Principal/Partner at Stace Hammond
Partner at Lane Neave
Assistant Vice President and Senior Broker at MJ Hall & Company since 2018
Suncorp Bank introduces Solar Home Bonus offer for customers who are choosing renewable energy for their homes
Month-on-month market share growth commences
Suncorp Bank wins the Canstar award for most outstanding value in investment loans
Suncorp Bank wins Money Magazine’s Bank of the Year and Business Bank of the Year awards for the fifth year in a row
Suncorp Bank’s turnaround times are the lowest they have ever been. The lender becomes Australia’s first certified carbon neutral bank for both its operation and transaction services
How does he distinguish himself among fellow brokers?
“I believe all brokers are working very hard in a difficult market,” he says. “However, I have demonstrated continued growth, advocacy and performance on my client’s behalf, which is now recognised [for 10 consecutive years] in the Elite Broker awards.”
In 1990, Dixon got started with FAI, working in claims and as a team leader. From the late 1990s up until 2003, he worked at FAI and Suncorp in underwriting and as an area manager at VACC, CGU (South East Queensland). From 2003 to 2012, he got into broking and eventually started Dixon Insurance in 2013. Since then, he’s accumulated numerous acccolades, including Elite Broker, Diversity and Equity, and Fast Broker awards.
During the pandemic, Dixon challenged insurers over the Quarantine Act application to insurance wordings. His argument was that the Quarantine Act does not apply as an exclusion, as the Biosecurity Act was invoked by the Morrison Government, and this was not a subsequent amendment to the Quarantine Act. The test case in the Appeals court was won for Dixon’s client with a unanimous five-judge verdict.
He remains focused on transport, manufacturing, motor trade, engineering and large farm clients.
What are his plans for the future?
On a business level, “more of the same. I will continue to empower and encourage my staff to perform at their best as I have done for the last decade. I will continue to advocate for my clients, embracing new technology and being open to business and industry changes.”
On a personal level, Dixon invests significant time, effort and funds, along with his GT3, to support many charities through his passion for motorsport. From participating in and sponsoring the Thunderbolt Run (which provides tens of thousands of dollars in support for Beyond Blue and Prostate Cancer), to organising and running the Track Knights for Amira charity night where 28 Exotic Supercars raised funds through passenger laps in wet conditions, Dixon states “this is our time to give back to the community and those in need. My friendships and association with those seeking to do the same, allows us to contribute to those less fortunate and raise funds and awareness”.
He adds: “To be able to give back to the community is rewarding and fulfilling. I am honoured to be in a position where I can raise funds for those less fortunate and in need.”