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Tom Barnes


Tom Barnes is partner in the financial services and funds management team.  Tom advises across the spectrum of issues relevant to fund managers, trustees, custodians, distributors and their service providers.  Tom has significant experience advising clients on establishing new and innovative products, regulatory compliance, governance and legal risk management.

Recently, Tom has been heavily involved in the transition of products and providers to the new Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013 regime.  This included obtaining market services licenses, updating constitutional documentation, producing disclosure materials and investor communications, and advising on all aspects of related issues such as the operation of the new Disclose website.

Tom assists offshore fund managers gain access to the New Zealand retail and institutional markets through a variety of mechanisms such as master-feeder structures, wholesale market exemptions and interjurisdictional mutual recognition arrangements.  Tom also has a strong focus on regulation and compliance, pairing a granular understanding of the statutory rules with strong relationships with relevant regulatory bodies.

Tom is a contributing author to Investment Funds: International Series, New Zealand Financial Markets Law and Practice and the NZ Chapter of LexisNexis® Guide to FATCA Compliance.

Areas of FocusFinancial Services
Professional QualificationsBarrister and Solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand, 2007


  • Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013. Advised a broad range of financial institutions including fund managers, external investment managers, administration managers, custodians and supervisors on the transition of investment funds to the Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013 and ongoing compliance under that regime.  Product types included managed funds, superannuation and workplace savings schemes, and KiwiSaver schemes. Clients include large established providers, boutique investment houses and market entrants with novel product offerings.
  • Regulatory liaison. Advised financial service providers in their interactions with the suite of regulatory bodies including the Financial Markets Authority, the Registrar of Financial Service Providers, the Inland Revenue, the Ministry of Justice and the Department of Internal Affairs.
  • Compliance. Advised clients on domestic financial services requirements including financial service provider registration, retail investor dispute resolution scheme membership, distribution chain and financial advisory rules, anti-money laundering and countering financing of terrorism legislation, the NZ implementation of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act and the forthcoming Common Reporting Standard/Automatic Exchange of Information.
  • Mutual Recognition of Financial Product Offerings. Advised on offers of financial products between New Zealand and Australia by local and international fund manager under the mutual recognition regime for financial product offering between New Zealand and Australia.
  • UK pension transfers. Provided specialist advice to a number of providers on the rules for the establishment, operation and maintenance Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Schemes or QROPS, being retirement savings vehicles able to receive UK pension transfers.

  • Victoria University of Wellington, LLB, 2006


  • Tom is ranked in the 2019 Legal 500 Asia-Pacific rankings as a next generation lawyer in Investment Funds. 
  • Tom is ranked as a Next Generation Lawyer for Investment Funds in Legal 500 Asia-Pacific 2018 as a "highly recommended practitioner", particularly for his involvement with client Implemented Investment Solutions. 

Prior Experience

Tom joined the firm in September 2010 from a public sector background in capital markets regulation.

Memberships And Affiliations

  • New Zealand Law Society
  • Institute of Financial Professionals New Zealand, Inc.