Elana Geddis

Elana Geddis Photo  Contact Details

  Address:     Level 10, Equinox House
                    111 The Terrace, Wellington
                    PO Box 10-242
                    The Terrace, Wellington

  Phone No:  +64 4 499 2684

  DDI:          +64 4 913 7970


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  PA: Caroline Cheetham



Elana Geddis has comprehensive experience in the practice of public, administrative and international law. A former senior public sector lawyer, she is familiar with Cabinet and Parliamentary processes, the development and implementation of legislation, and the exercise of public decision-making powers.  She has a particular expertise in the interpretation and implementation of international obligations, including in the areas of the law of the sea, fisheries, continental shelf and the protection of the marine environment.  

Elana prides herself on delivering long-lasting workable solutions for her clients. She advises private and public sector clients in relation to all aspects of public law, including:

  • development and implementation of legislation
  • review of regulations and delegated legislation
  • proper scope and exercise of public powers
  • reviews and inquiries
  • submissions and reports to Select Committees

In addition, she regularly provides advice on international legal issues to clients in New Zealand and overseas, and has assisted a number of Governments with respect to the delineation and delimitation of their continental shelves.

An experienced negotiator and advocate, Elana has appeared before the International Court of Justice, the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, the UN Commission for the Limits of the Continental Shelf and other United Nations bodies.  

Prior to joining Harbour Chambers in 2011, Elana was Deputy Director of the Legal Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. She began her career as Judge’s Clerk to the Chief Justice of New Zealand, before taking up a Frank Knox Memorial Fellowship in 1995 to complete an LLM at Harvard Law School. In 2010-11 she was special advisor to Sir Geoffrey Palmer, the Chair of the United Nations Secretary-General’s Panel of Inquiry on the 31 May 2010 Flotilla Incident.

Elana is a member of the New Zealand Law Society’s Public and Administrative Law Committee.

Professional Qualifications 

  • Barrister Sole, 2011
  • Special Advisor, United Nations, 2010-2011
  • Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, 1997-2011
  • Chen & Palmer, 1996-1997
  • Judge’s Clerk to the Chief Justice, 1994-1995
  • Admitted barrister and solicitor, Wellington, 1996
  • LL.M, Harvard Law School,  1996
  • LL.B (Hons), University of Otago, 1995

Principal Areas of Practice

  • Public Law
  • International Law
  • Administrative Law
  • Constitutional Law
  • Environmental Law

Caroline Cheetham 1

 Caroline Cheetham
 PA to Elana Geddis
 Phone No: +64 4 499 2684
 Fax No:  + 64 4 499 2705
 Email Caroline Cheetham