Can You Afford To Get Involved In a Legal Dispute?

Statistics show that businesses that get embroiled in legal disputes are 8 times more likely to fail than businesses that don't

That's because legal disputes cost money and time which you could be investing in your business to make profit. Instead, you're paying some lawyer to sort out the mess or (even worse) you are letting the other person get away with it. 

The simple irony is that every legal dispute I've seen in my years of practice could have been avoided if the business owner had been more proactive and less reactive towards the litigation risk in their business.

Approachable Lawyer takes the litigation risk out of your business without it costing you a fortune

Most business owners will only go to a lawyer if they have a problem to sort out. That makes most lawyers very reactive in the way they go about giving legal advice. However, the secret of business success is to be proactive and plan for risk. But, how many lawyers have you come across who regularly go out of their way to advise their clients before the problem happens so that they don't get embroiled in litigation? That's my philosophy at Approachable Lawyer, which is why all our business clients receive regular articles on the potential litigation risks in their business so that they can do something about it before the risks eventuate into something much worse. As a result, they spend less on legal fees. 

But doesn't legal advice cost a lot of money?

Either you, or someone you know, will have heard stories about lawyers charging through the nose for their advice. You may be someone who has been shocked by their lawyer's final bill and took a deep gulp when it came time to pay. That's because lawyers have to charge a high hourly rate to make a law firm profitable. Approachable Lawyer is not a traditional law firm. Sure, we can charge by the hourly rate if you want tailored advice, but we have other options to suit every business budget, from start up to mature business. 

His clear and easy guide to prices meant there were no nasty surprises later on

I had always put lawyers into the "longwinded and expensive" box. But what I found about Michael was that he was accessible, prompt and met my delivery timeframes - especially after I had plied him with coffee and churros. I particularly liked his easy and straightforward approach. The clear and easy guide to his prices meant that there were no nasty surprises later on. It was certainly refreshing to have advice that was down to earth and prompt (with or without the churros). I would certainly recommend him and Approachable Lawyer to other small or medium sized business with a budget for good cup of coffee and churros. Oh, and did I mention the churros...?
Tash McGill, Solafida Creative Management

The FREE option

Let's start with the free option, because everyone likes FREE. You will find on this website, lots of articles, each dedicated to a particular litigation risk in your business. Our clients get sent new article every month and all you need to do to become a client is sign up to this website. As a client and subscriber to this website your details are held in the strictest confidence in accordance with our Privacy Policy and Law Society Regulations.  

Then, once you are a subscriber you get access to the subscriber only articles on this site and the first few chapters of my first two books written in a language which you can understand and implement straight away.

Comprehensive Legal Advice

If you are looking for more comprehensive legal advice, then you have a number of options. You may find the legal advice covered in one of my books. For example, Employed but not Engaged is a step by step guide to dismissing employees without getting sued and has been described as "every employer's bible".

If you are looking for document templates, then head to the Secret Library. This contains all my document templates with easy to understand instructions for putting them together yourself. If on the other hand you need help putting together a document or need one off legal support for your business then take a look at our Legal Hotline: the only tool where you can access a top lawyer for one on one support within 48 hours without incurring huge legal costs. All legal advice is given by me (not some junior who is wet behind the ears) and is given in a language you can understand - my specialities are employment and business law

Like most people I thought that dealing with a lawyer would be costly, complicated and drawn out

Dealing with Michael Smyth of Approachable Lawyer wasn't' like that at all. I really appreciated the speed with which you sorted out my problem and the simplicity with which every aspect was dealt with. There was a good return on my investment in terms of your fee which eased the pain but also the fact that you were very straight with the facts not pushy and sympathetic to my needs. Most important to me was maintaining my dignity and protecting my professional reputation whilst gaining financial security. Those aims were achieved so I would most certainly recommend your services because in an employee situation you need a third party to represent you and protect you at vulnerable times in your professional career. Not only that, for a lawyer, you are a nice bloke!

Annette Lee

My "no legalese" guarantee

Some lawyers claim to speak in plain every day English, but it is amazing how often they slip back into legal jargon and confuse the heck out of clients. At Approachable Lawyer, we have "no legalese" guarantee. That means that if you find anything on this website or in one of our products which you do not understand we will translate it for you without charge. Simply let me know what you don't understand by emailing me and I will personally respond.
New Zealand is very fortunate to have you and I'm very envious

As a Small Business Coach in Alberta, Canada, I've been intrigued by the information you've been making available from I've tried to find a lawyer in Canada that has your flare and interest in expanding the legal practice beyond the office. So far I've been unsuccessful. New Zealand is very fortunate to have you and I'm very envious. Thanks for the approval to use articles that will apply across the pond on my site! 

Ruby Curran, Acidental HR

Where do I start?

If you are new to this website then I suggest that you start by trawling through the articles so that you can get a flavour of where the potential litigation risks are in your business. If you like the free articles then please subscribe and take a look at one of the books available from this website. If you want documents then membership of the Secret Library is a must. If you are looking for legal advice then give us a call on 09 358 2725 and we can tell you whether the Legal Hotline is suitable for you.

Ready? Click on the lawyer to your right to begin. If you have any questions about how this website works then please do not hesitate to let me know.


Michael Smyth
Michael Smyth LLb.
PS. Currently the information provided on this website is specific to New Zealand law only.
PPS. If you are from New Zealand, beware other websites which purport to offer legal advice but eminate from countries other than New Zealand - whilst they may be similar, laws differ from country to country.