Lee Harris

Legal Staff

Trusts and Estates

DDI:+64 9 950 9047


LinkedIn:View my LinkedIn profile


Trust and Asset Planning
Trust and Estate Litigation
Wills and Estates
Relationship Property Law
Real Estate
French Speaking Services

Lee is a Trust & Estate Practitioner in our trusts and estates team. She works closely with Tim Orr and Melissa Clark.

Trusts and Estate Planning

Lee is a member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP), a global professional body for trust and estate practitioners. Lee has completed the STEP Diploma in International Trust Management, the recognised worldwide benchmark qualification for those working in the international trusts industry.  She has been recognised by STEP as a 'TEP', owing to her specialist knowledge and skill in this area.

Lee regularly advises settlors, beneficiaries and trustees on the establishment, administration, winding up and effectiveness of trusts. She takes a proactive approach to whether a trust is fit for purpose, including when foreign connections are factored in.

She has been involved in disputes between trustees and beneficiaries. This has included relationship property disputes where constructive trusts were implied over express trusts. Lee also has experience with foreign trusts.

As a French speaker, Lee assists law firms and clients with French complexities associated with trusts and estates.

Lee drafts and advises clients in relation to effective and realistic estate planning.

She regularly assists clients who have connections with multiple jurisdictions, including providing solutions that resolve conflicting laws. She has presented various seminars in respect of cross-border estate planning, including to the New Zealand Law Society, Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners and Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand. She provides resources for our French clients, including online and inhouse presentations (in French).

Commercial and residential conveyancing

Lee has experience in business transactions and residential conveyancing, including advising on New Zealand structures in conjunction with foreign tax advisers.

Estate administration

Lee has experience in all aspects of estate administration including assisting executors with obtaining letters of administration or grants of probate and dealing with the estate administration process.

With her foreign experience, she has also assisted law firms and clients to resolve conflicting laws estate issues.

Relationship property

Lee drafts and advises clients in relation to relationship property and separation agreements. She has worked with francophone clients and their advisers in respect of assets in New Zealand.


Lee completed the Diploma in International Trust Management with STEP in 2012 while working in the New Zealand foreign trust industry, and subsequently completed the STEP Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism Certificate in 2017. She has worked in a leading accounting firm and continues to work closely with them to ensure prompt identification and resolution of tax issues for her clients.  Lee has established strong connections with foreign advisers, particularly in France. Previously, she qualified as a legal executive in 1986. She joined Martelli McKegg in January 2022.


Justice of the Peace for New Zealand

Neighbourhood Support Street Co-ordinator


Use or lose your New Zealand cash investments - Unclaimed Money

Utilisez ou perdez vos investissements en liquide en Nouvelle-Zélande - Fonds non réclamé

Increasing visibility by revenue authorities on New Zealand investments

Les Français en Nouvelle-Zélande - Qu'adviendra-t-il aux enfants et aux actifs à mon décès, et quelle imposition s'applique ? - webinar

Ownership of foreign assets and emigration - why cross-border estate planning is a pressing issue / Propriété des actifs étrangers et l'émigration - pourquoi la planification successorale transfrontalière est-elle une question urgente

Martelli McKegg features in Maison et Jardin (the French equivalent of House and Garden)

Clients francophones détenant des biens néo-zélandais - les conséquences inattendues - webinaire

Overseas beneficiaries and trustees - triggers for foreign tax surprises / Bénéficiaires et trustees étrangers

Children, life interests and non-residents in Wills - why are the new trust information requirements relevant? / Les enfants, les intérêts viagers et les non-résidents dans les testaments - pourquoi les nouvelles exigences d'information sur les trusts sont-elles pertinentes?

New tax return information for trusts - what are the implications? / Nouveaux renseignements des déclarations fiscales pour les trusts - quelles sont les conséquences ?

Overseas Investment Act - restrictions affecting non-complying foreigners / Overseas Investment Act - restrictions concernant les estrangers non-conformes