Welcome to
Wellington Family Law.

Wellington Family Law was established in 1994 by Simon Maude (who is now a Family Court Judge). The firm has three partners, being Caroline Hannan, Chris Dellabarca and Sija Spaak, an Associate Deborah Dye-Knighton, and a solicitor Harriet Hughes.

All of the lawyers at Wellington Family Law are members of the Family Law Section of the New Zealand Law Society.

Our offices are centrally located in the heart of the Wellington CBD.

Wellington Family Law

We provide a complete range of family law services:

Legal advice

Negotiation on your behalf

Court proceedings


Care/contact arrangements for children

Relationship property / including contracting out agreements

Dissolution (Divorce)

Care and protection of children


Domestic Violence

Welfare Guardianship and Property Management - PPPR Act

Family protection and testamentary promises

Wellington Family Law

We are five specialist family lawyers. Collectively we have over 70 years’ experience in the practice of family law (although none of us is on a pension!)

We have experience, expertise and a pragmatic approach.

Our team of specialist family lawyers offers a full range of family law services including advice, negotiation on your behalf and court proceedings where negotiation cannot achieve resolution.

Caroline Hannan Family Lawyer in Wellington NZ

Caroline Hannan – Partner
T: (04) 499 6293

Caroline has been in practice as a lawyer since 1991 and joined Wellington Family Law in 2002.  She has specialised exclusively in family law since then. Her years of specialist family law practice are preceded and complemented by 11 years of general practice, which included family law.  Caroline is a senior lawyer for child.

Chris Dellabarca is a Family Lawyer at Wellington Family Law in Wellington NZ

Chris Dellabarca – Partner

T: (04) 499 6293

Chris has been in practice since 1995.  Like Caroline, he had a number of years of general practice (12), including family law, before joining Wellington Family Law in 2007.  He has specialised exclusively in family law since then.  Prior to joining Wellington Family Law, he also tutored budding lawyers at the Institute of Professional Legal Studies.  Chris is also a senior lawyer for child.

Sija Spaak Family Lawyer in Wellington NZ

Sija Spaak – Partner

T: (04) 499 6293

Sija has been in practice since 2000 and has specialised in family law throughout her legal career.  Sija joined Wellington Family Law in 2003.  Before training as a lawyer, Sija had a background in social work.  She is a senior lawyer for child. Sija is a member of the Wellington Family Courts Association.

Deborah Knighton Family Lawyer in Wellington NZ

Deborah Dye-Knighton – Associate

T: (04) 499 6293

Deborah is currently on extended leave.

Deborah has been in practice since 2011 and has had a specialist family law practice since that time. Deborah joined Wellington Family Law in 2013. Deborah is a member of the Family Court’s Association.

Harriet - Family Lawyer in Wellington New Zealand

Harriet Hughes – Solicitor

T: (04) 499 6293

Harriet graduated from the University of Otago in 2015 with a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in English literature. Harriet initially worked for the Ministry of Justice as a Registrar at the Porirua Family Court. Harriet was admitted as a barrister and solicitor in 2016 and practiced as a family lawyer in Porirua before joining Wellington Family Law in 2017.

Contact Us

7th floor Petherick Towers,
38-42 Waring Taylor Street,
Wellington 6011

Find us on Google Maps

PO Box 5251, Lambton Quay, Wellington 6145

T: (04) 499 6293
Fax: (04) 499 8565