In a judgment released 24 April 2024, Paulsen AJ has granted leave to both the plaintiffs and EQC to appeal his previous judgments of 29 May and 14 December 2023.  You can find a copy of the judgment here (or in the Claim Documents tab).

While it was great for the High Court to approve the class action in the 14 December 2023 judgment, it unfortunately excluded many people including those with IFV and those with assigned claims.  We felt this was wrong and we hope the appeal will correct this and mean that a larger group of people will be allowed to participate in this class action.

We will update you further once more information is available from the Court of Appeal.

EQC should pay the full cost to reinstate your land

Prior to the Canterbury earthquakes, EQC had never settled land claims based on 'diminution of value' (DOV), it always settled on the actual cost of reinstatement.  Even for the Canterbury earthquakes, EQC paid the cost of the reinstatement for all other land damage types other than increased liquefaction vulnerability (ILV) and increased flooding vulnerability (IFV).

EQC's lawyers at the time, Chapman Tripp, recommended DOV as a measure of loss, as a way to minimise payments to homeowners.  The quote below is from EQC's own geotechnical engineers, Tonkin + Taylor.

"DoV was a construct of the lawyers acting for EQC who did not believe EQC customers should receive windfall gains when land was damaged by liquefaction, but not lost, and could still be utilised by EQC customers. In particular DoV pertained to new categories of land damage, namely Increased Liquefaction vulnerability (ILV) and Increased Flood Vulnerability (IFV)."

Once this EQC Land class action is certified by the Court there will be qualifying criteria that homeowners will need to meet.  In the meantime, we recommend that you register now and we can keep you up to date as the claim progresses.

What is this EQC Land class action about?

The representative plaintiff (representing all of the homeowners) is arguing that EQC should have paid the cost to reinstate the land to the value of the cap (as set out in s19 of the Earthquake Commission Act 1993).  It says EQC was wrong to pay a substantially lesser amount calculated by EQC using its DOV methodology.

EQC says that it has fulfilled its statutory obligation by paying for the land damage based on its DOV methodology.  It says this claim is a direct challenge to the High Court declaratory judgment in Earthquake Commission v Insurance Council of New Zealand Inc in 2014.  We believe that the declaratory judgment contains a number of errors which need to be corrected, and if need be, challenged through to the appropriate Court.

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What does it cost?

It costs you nothing to register and nothing to be part of this EQC Land class action.  If you receive a settlement as a result of the class action, the litigation funder will charge a maximum fee of 15% (including GST) of any settlement monies received or judgment sum awarded.  

You will never be asked to pay any money up front or to pay for a share of any costs – it’s simply a deduction of up to 15% (including GST) from any amount you are entitled to receive once the class action is resolved.  You do not pay any additional legal fees.  This is less than many other class actions.

Frequenty asked questions

Further information about the claim

If you have questions about this class action, please contact us and one of our team will be in touch with you.