Megan Paish

LLB, BA (Criminology (Hons)(First Class))

Senior Associate

Megan 1

Megan joined Cooper Legal in September 2018 as a Senior Associate.

She was admitted to the Bar in 2005 and her first paid legal role was at the Hawkes Bay Community Law Centre as a solicitor/legal educator.  Megan then joined John Gwilliam and Co (now Main Street Legal) in March 2007.  She left the firm to backpack around Europe and South-East Asia for four months in September 2009.  In 2010 she returned to New Zealand and worked at a private law firm in South Auckland.  When this partnership disbanded she joined the Public Defence Service (PDS) in October 2010 in Manukau.  In September 2011 Megan transferred to the Wellington PDS and worked there until May 2018.  Megan then completed her Masters full-time before joining Cooper Legal.

She has volunteered at the Wellington Community Law Centre since 2003 and is on the Volunteer Sub-Committee.  Megan has also just been appointed to the Board of Trustees of the Law Centre.  She was awarded best community contribution at the In-House Lawyer Awards in 2016 for her work with the Community Law Centre.  She has been on the criminal law and parole law committees, and was on the Council of the Wellington Branch of the District Law Society in 2016. 

She has undertaken all of her tertiary studies at Victoria University of Wellington.  She received her LLB/BA in 2004.  She received her BA(Hons) (First Class) in criminology in 2016 and studied part-time while working at the PDS.  She completed her MA in criminology in 2018 and undertook this full-time after winning two scholarships and top-up funding from the Victoria University of Wellington Scholarship Office.

Megan has a particular passion for social justice and in expanding opportunities to access justice which is reflected in her commitment to legal aid work and volunteer legal work.  This was also reflected in her Honours and Masters study which looked at environmental justice.  This was also the reason she has joined the team at Cooper Legal who are committed to social justice and providing high quality legal services to those most in need of them.  She undertakes criminal, parole, and human rights work.  She is an experienced lawyer with category 3 legal aid provider status in criminal and civil legal aid with extensive court experience in the District Court including judge-alone and jury trial work.  She is also an experienced duty solicitor and has PDLA status.  She is also available to take private instructions.

In her spare time Megan enjoys spending time with her partner Tony, cat Manaia, and their friends, running, travelling in New Zealand and overseas, getting out into nature, enjoying Wellington’s café scene and reading.

Email Megan