Carlos Smith-Diaz


Dispute Resolution

LLB (Hons) (First Class), BBiomedSc (Hons) (First Class), BBmedSc (Molecular Pharmacology and Medicinal Chemistry), PhD (To be conferred)

Carlos is a solicitor in the Dispute Resolution Team at Saunders Robinson Brown.

As a member of the Dispute Resolution Team, Carlos works closely with partners Tyler Brown and Melissa Borcoski on a wide range of matters pertaining to civil and commercial disputes. Prior to joining Saunders Robinson Brown, Carlos worked at another Christchurch law firm as a specialist construction law solicitor.

Carlos holds a Bachelor of Laws with First Class Honours from Victoria University of Wellington, a Bachelor of Biomedical Science with First Class Honours from Otago University and a Bachelor of Biomedical Science majoring in molecular pharmacology and medicinal chemistry from Victoria University of Wellington.

Carlos has just successfully defended his PhD thesis, which he completed at Mātai Hāora - Centre for Redox Biology and Medicine at the University of Otago, Christchurch. His PhD is in the field of epigenetics, bioinformatics and biochemistry. His PhD thesis is entitled “Vitamin C and TET-mediated demethylation in leukaemia and development”.

Carlos has been the recipient of multiple legal writing prizes and has published four peer reviewed scientific papers along with several legal articles. He enjoys working on complex legal problems and thrives on a challenge. Carlos also speaks Spanish fluently.

Notable Experience:

  • Presenting legal research on the retentions scheme under the Construction Contracts Act 2002 at the Society of Construction Law New Zealand seminars in Christchurch, Wellington and Auckland.

  • Providing advice to builders and other contractors in relation to construction disputes.

  • Providing advice to policyholders in relation to insurance claims arising out of the Canterbury earthquakes, including associated defective workmanship claims for failed repairs.

  • Publishing in the Victoria University of Wellington Law Review.


  • Member of the New Zealand Law Society.