K3 Legal's recent elevation of Julie Ding to director represents a new expansion for the firm's specialties
Julie Ding has marked herself out as a significant figure in the country’s legal landscape over the last decade. Fluent in English and Mandarin, during her career she’s been able to assist a broad range of both local and international clients. This has included civil litigation in the High Court and District Court as counsel – including various freezing orders, summary judgment and enforcement processes – as well as leading and arguing appeals to the High Court and assisting with appeals to the Court of Appeal.
Joining K3 Legal in 2015, Ding has worked across a variety of complex civil, commercial and family disputes, appearing in the District and High Courts – everything from murder trials and complex fraud to family-related issues has come under her purview at some point during her career. All of these experiences have led to a broad palette of skills, which Ding draws on during her day-to-day duties with K3 Legal.
Holding a PAL3 category in criminal defence matters, Ding sees her criminal work as a crucial part of her wider advocacy goals within New Zealand’s legal industry. As a newly-minted director at K3 Legal, she also sees herself as playing a key role in drawing on the firm’s strength to build the organisation into the future.
“Advocates make their skills their specialty, rather than specialising in a specific area of subject matter,” says Ding. “This is an important ethos of K3 Legal and it is the foundation on which we are instructed – and with the different language capabilities K3 has, it creates a deeper understanding of issues and better client engagement.”
Having staff with different backgrounds and experiences enhances the structure of K3’s modern workforce too, Ding says. Cultural gaps are able to be bridged for clients in a practical manner.
“In our case, it gives us the ability to provide an in-depth understanding and advice to a similarly diverse community and client base,” she says. “We’re able to draw on our own individual backgrounds and use that to educate the clients we work with – we help them understand the differences between the culture where they come from and the culture of New Zealand, where they’re living now.”
Looking ahead, Ding will be heading up K3’s growing criminal team. She’s confident that given the right time and resources, this area of the firm will develop into one of its specialties.
“Criminal defence work has always been an important cornerstone of our justice system,” she says. “We want K3 to have the ability to take these cases – essentially, to be able to assist our clients in all aspects of their lives. It’s part of our practice that we want to grow and be proud of.”