The Multi-Million Dollar Legal Aid Lady . . And The Top Earning Providers

Legal Aid's Top Provider - Sonja Cooper

The largest legal aid providers according to Ministry of Justice figures show Tamaki Legal as top earner for both this and last year (figures are calculated from 1 July to 30 June for each of the years).

Although Darrell Naden’s Tamaki Legal has been a consistent top entry for the past three years, the overall Legal Aid Provider trophy must go to Wellington’s psychiatric litigation specialist Sonja Cooper who has garnered nothing less than $1 million a year with a total over the past decade of over $13 million in legal aid payments.

To her must go the Golden Legal Aid Crown.


The Top 10 Legal Aid Providers Over the Past Two Years


  1. Tamaki Legal 1.787m
  2. Ebborn Law – 1.005m
  3.  Sonja Cooper 1.635m
  4.  Lance Lawson 1.364m
  5. Woodward Chrisp 1.359m 
  6. Te Mata Law 1.125m
  7. Morrison Kent 990,000 
  8. Thode Utting 972,000 
  9. Thomas Dewar 949,000 
  10. John Miller Law – 918,000


  1. Tamaki Legal  1.869
  2. Sonja Cooper  1.595
  3. Lance Dawson   1.139
  4. Morrison Kent   1.091
  5. Woodward Chrisp  1.015
  6. Thode Utting  966,000
  7. Ebborn Law   879,000
  8. Zindels    770,000
  9. Thomas Dewar   727,000
  10. Charl Hirschfeld  734,000

The Stayers: Who Have Gone The Distance With Legal Aid?

LawFuel looked through the archives to see which legal aid providers had been providing legal aid for the past 10 years.

The major provider/recipient has been Wellington psychiatric claims lawyer Sonja Cooper of Sonja Cooper Law who has consistently achieved seven figure legally aided claims for most, if not all of the past 10 years.

The Top 10 from 2006/07

  1. Kensington Swan 2.258m
  2. Charl Hirschfeld 1.492m
  3. Sonja Cooper 1.284m
  4. Rainey Collins 991,000
  5. Powell Webber 846,000
  6. Rangitauira & Co 807,000
  7. GJ King 805,000
  8. Corban Revell 804,000
  9. John Miller Law 745,000
  10. Wackrow Williams 672,000

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