Scott Thompson

Partner - Construction and Infrastructure

Scott is a construction, infrastructure and energy law expert, who specialises in project delivery and construction disputes.  He has a strong interest in sustainability and is an advocate for actioning the firm’s sustainability strategy.

Scott acts for significant industry participants including global engineering services firms and Fortune 500 companies, NZX listed principals, market-leading Australasian contractors, and the Government.

He specialises in the project delivery phase of complex infrastructure projects and resolving construction disputes. Scott works closely with the project and management teams of clients to set strategies, provide legal and commercial support, and resolve conflict. He acts on nationally significant infrastructure projects including energy, education, road, rail, sport, and water.

Scott advises clients involved in project disputes, both during and after the construction phase, including those relating to variations, extensions of time and delay, disruption, force majeure, risk allocation, non-compliant works, and negligence. Specialising in alternative dispute resolution techniques, he regularly appears in arbitrations as well as in mediations and negotiations for clients.  Scott also acts for lessees in rent review arbitrations.

With a commercial background as an energy transactions and projects lawyer in the United States, Scott knows the energy industry and the commercial realities within which his clients operate. While in the United States, Scott gained a Masters of Law (Energy, Environment and Arbitration) and later worked for a tier-one law firm, Bracewell LLP, advising public and private energy companies, banks and private equity firms.

Focused on understanding his client’s goals at the outset of an engagement, Scott delivers commercially considered legal advice, targeted to achieve those goals. His strategic approach to project delivery and dispute resolution allows clients to make decisions over the lifecycle of a project against a consistent framework.  By closely partnering with clients, Scott and his team help anticipate and plan for future issues on projects and adapt strategies as client objectives evolve.

Clients value Scott’s strategic insights and ability to quickly identify and then focus on the key issues arising on a given project. He is able to assume project and dispute management responsibility, freeing clients of additional day-to-day burdens and allowing client delivery teams to better focus on their given roles and responsibilities.

Scott is a thought leader within the industry, publishing papers and presenting at industry events, including on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of Building and the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors.  Recently, he has presented in various forums for The Chancery Lane Project, an initiative helping parties incorporate climate-conscious clauses into contracts.

Scott is licensed in New Zealand, New York and Texas.

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Professional background

Recent work

Contractual compliance and disputes for Transmission Gully

Advising the Wellington Gateway Partnership on the delivery of the Transmission Gully roading Public Private Partnership (PPP) project, in particular overseeing contractual compliance and disputes.

Turitea Wind Farm

Advising Mercury on the delivery of the Turitea Wind Farm project which, when completed, will be New Zealand’s largest wind farm and one of the largest wind farms in the world.


Acting in alternative dispute resolution forums, including arbitrations, on several large and complex infrastructure disputes.

Fulton Hogan

Project delivery and disputes management advice on a large infrastructure project that remains under construction.

Department of Internal Affairs

Representing the DIA in arbitration in relation to the failed design of a recently completed DIA facility.

Rent Reviews

Recent appearances in arbitration for a number of lessee clients including receiving a landmark award which has been subsequently referred to widely.

Ōtākaro, Metro Sports Facility in Christchurch

Advising Ōtākaro on infrastructure disputes arising during the project delivery phase.


  • 2014, Texas
  • 2013, New York
  • 2010, New Zealand


  • LLM, University of Texas
  • LLB, BSc, University of Otago


  • Construction
  • Construction Disputes
  • Energy and Resources
  • Infrastructure
  • Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Project Advisory
  • Sustainability