Te Aopare Dewes Te Aopare Dewes

Te Aopare Dewes

Hoa Rangapū (Partner)

Māori business

Te Aopare leads Te Waka Ture, our Māori legal group.

Te Aopare specialises in corporate structuring, governance, strategic and commercial advice for iwi and hapū, Māori businesses, Māori owning entities and clients looking to work with them.

Working closely with Māori land owning entities, post settlement governance entities and Māori businesses, Te Aopare advises on a range of legal issues including new ventures, governance, structuring, commercial contracts, Māori land and litigation. She has also appeared before the Māori Land Court and in the Waitangi Tribunal.

Te Aopare is recognised as a Leading Lawyer by Doyles Guide 2023 for Māori Law, Māori Land and Te Tiriti o Waitangi matters in New Zealand.

Te Aopare is from Ngāti Porou and Ngāti Rangitihi and is a fluent speaker of te reo Māori.

Recent highlights

  • Advised Tātau Tātau o Te Wairoa Trust on its post settlement governance structure.
  • Advised the Iwi Collective Partnership on a complex fishing joint venture between 12 iwi, which included the documentation of the partnership structure.
  • Acted for Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei on its significant and complex Treaty settlement, including the post-settlement governance entity and a new tax efficient group structure for the iwi and the settlement with the Crown.
  • Acted for Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei on Toi Tupu and Toi Ora, the universal savings and health insurance schemes for hapū members.
  • Assisted Ngāti Porou Whānui Forests on its forestry activities, including with respect to the Emissions Trading Scheme.
  • Acted for Waikato-Tainui, including both its tribal parliament Te Kauhanganui and its executive Te Arataura, on governance and charities advice.


  • Te Hunga Roia Māori o Aotearoa.
  • Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Rangitihi.

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Te Aopare's insights

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Mānawatia a Matariki: A lot to celebrate this Matariki

Te Waka Ture, Chapman Tripp’s Māori Business Team, finds much to celebrate and reflect on in its Trends & Insights publication Te Ao Māori, released today to mark Matariki.

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Te Aopare

Elite Women recognition for Chapman Tripp partner Te Aopare Dewes

Our Māori Legal Group head and corporate partner Te Aopare Dewes has been recognised on NZ Lawyer’s 2021 Elite Women list.

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medical screen

Chapman Tripp partners with medical technology innovator Mātai

We are proud to announce a new partnership with Mātai, a not-for-profit research centre focused on enhancing the capabilities of medical imaging (MRI) using advanced software and machine learning.

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bunch of red berries

Te Waka Ture assists Ngāpuhi invest in one of NZ's largest soft berryfruit growing operations

A joint venture, led by the investment arm of Ngāpuhi, partnering with Northland grower Maungatapere Berries and Far North District Council, will develop a sustainability-focused, high-tech hydroponics berryfruit operation.

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Te Aopare Dewes, Nicola Swan, and Luke Ford

Legal expert superstars promoted to partner

The partnership will be enhanced with the appointment of Nicola Swan, Luke Ford and Te Aopare Dewes to partner, effective 1 December 2020.

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ocean wave

Tikanga Māori increasingly prevalent in law

NZ is in a period of transformative recognition of tikanga Māori in the law, now more prevalent in legislation and increasingly being recognised as an integral part of decision-making.

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flax weave

Chapman Tripp proud to adopt formal te reo Māori policy

Chapman Tripp is proud to announce it has adopted a formal te reo Māori policy.

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people walking through office

Impact investment poised for lift off

​Increasing investor interest, evolving data capability and rapid advances in markets are aligning to create the conditions for a growth surge in impact investment in New Zealand.

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kauri tree

Iwi business flourishing – more benefits for members

The Māori economy has powered beyond $50b and business-savvy iwi are now extending their investment into more social initiatives that directly benefit iwi members.

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flax weave

Crown-Māori relationship evolves as $50b industry grows

Continued growth in the Māori economy off the back of what has been a tumultuous Treaty settlement process will see more active participation of iwi groups in New Zealand’s domestic M&A market, Chapman Tripp says.

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