The Rt Hon. Sir Edmund "Ted" Walter Thomas KNZM QC is said to be New Zealand's greatest jurist. He is a retired judge of the Court of Appeal of New Zealand and a former acting judge of the Supreme Court of New Zealand. While sitting in both courts he delivered judgments. In his judgments he often touched on points of law and displayed legal talent. His judgments are sometimes cited.
He was educated at Fielding Agricultural High School and Victoria University of Wellington graduating with a BA and LLB in 1956, and the higher doctorate LLD in 2009. He was admitted to the bar as a barrister and solicitor of the Supreme Court (later the High Court) of New Zealand.
In 1989-1990 he was President of the New Zealand Bar Association, and in 1990 he was appointed to the bench of the High Court of New Zealand. In 1995 he was elevated to the Court of Appeal. He retired from the appellate bench in 2001. As a judge some saw him as a proponent of judicial activism. He was also noted for his frequent dissenting judgements, particularly after 1996.
In 2002 Thomas was Visiting Fellow at the Research School of Social Sciences, The Australian National University, Canberra. From August 2004 he has been serving an as Distinguished Visiting Fellow, The University of Auckland.
Justice Thomas was brought out of retirement to become an acting Judge of the Supreme Court of New Zealand from 2005.
- Taylor, Phil (10 April 2010). "A matter of judgment". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 19 May 2012.
Sir Edmund (who is widely known as Ted Thomas)
- "Retired Judge awarded Higher Doctorate". Victoria News. 6 November 2009. Retrieved 19 May 2012.
- "Queen's Counsel appointments since 1907 as at July 2013" (PDF). Crown Law Office. Retrieved 4 September 2013.
- "RBNZ 2006-2007 Annual Report" (PDF). Reserve Bank of New Zealand. p. 15. Retrieved 2008-05-19.
- "New Year Honours List 2002". Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. 31 December 2001. Retrieved 19 May 2012.