Colin Craig has been enjoying family time and catching up on some work today while digesting the $1.27 million defamation verdict against him.

"I've done some work today - I have a busy life - I've had some time with the kids and I've been doing some work," said the former Conservative Party leader who was found by a jury yesterday to have defamed Taxpayers' Union executive director Jordan Williams.

Much of the four-week trial's evidence was about Craig's working relationship with his former press secretary, Rachel MacGregor, who quit two days before the 2014 parliamentary elections.

"Obviously I do think about the verdict from yesterday," said Craig. "I can't help but think about it. You've got to get on with life so it's pretty much get on with normal life."


He reiterated he was "very, very surprised" by the jury's verdict and damages award.

There had been many phone calls, text messages and emails in support of him, plus "one or two emails that weren't, but that's life".

"A lot of people are very surprised. We just have to [take] one step at a time. The next step is for the lawyers to file submissions with the court."

The jury awarded compensation of $1.05 million and punitive damages of $220,000 - a total of $1.27 million that was described by Auckland University legal expert Associate Professor Bill Hodge as a "breathtaking" sum for a New Zealand defamation case.

Craig's lawyer Stephen Mills QC is seeking leave to have the verdict and financial award set aside, telling Judge Sarah Katz that the jury got it wrong.

Today, Craig said, "She has left it up to both parties to make submissions."

Asked if the outcome had shaken his faith in the jury system, Craig said: "That's probably a comment on the legal process which I'm going to stay away from because we haven't got judgement entered yet. It's better to let the lawyers work their way through that."

"It was a four-week trial in defamation with, there must have been 25 or 30 witnesses, vast amounts of information, and some quite difficult legal principles to get your head around; it's a difficult environment for everyone."

Williams said yesterday he was pleased by the jury's finding.

The case arose from Williams' objection to comments by Craig at a press conference in 2015 and in a pamphlet delivered to 1.6 million households.