Prize details

I L M Richardson Prize in Private Law


$3,000 (subject to available funds)

Closing date:

No application required


The prize is awarded to students studying private law at Victoria University Law School. To be eligible, students must have completed all four compulsory private law subjects - Contract, Tort, Property and Equity.

The prize will only be awarded to students 25 years or under.


Former President of the Court of Appeal, the Rt Hon Sir Ivor Richardson died in December 2014. During his career he made a substantive contribution to the law and to social policy. Having obtained his LLB at the University of Canterbury and his LLM and doctorate at the University of Michigan, Sir Ivor became a partner in an Invercargill firm, Macalister Brothers, from 1957 to 1963. From 1963-1966, he served as Crown Counsel in the Crown Law Office. He joined the Law Faculty at Victoria University of Wellington, where he was professor for six years and served as dean of the Law Faculty. Between 1973 and 1977, he was a partner in one of New Zealand's leading commercial firms, Watts & Patterson. During this time he served on the Council of Victoria University of Wellington, as Chancellor from 1984-1986. Sir Ivor was appointed a judge of the then Supreme Court in 1977. Such was his reputation that he was almost immediately appointed to the Court of Appeal, where he served from 1978 to 2002. He was President of the Court of Appeal from 1996 until his retirement.

The prize is awarded to the student with the top aggregate marks for the four compulsory private law subjects at the Law School. Currently the compulsory private law subjects are:

  • Contract
  • Tort
  • Property
  • Equity

These core subjects may change from time to time.

The prize is awarded on the recommendation of the Dean of the Law Faculty. The Dean of the Law Faculty has the discretion to award more than one if there are two equally good students who merit it. If there is no candidate of sufficient merit, the prize will not be awarded. If in any year the prize is not awarded, the funds may be used in a subsequent year.

Recipients will be asked to write a letter of thanks, which will be forwarded appropriately.