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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In the United Kingdon, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for eight years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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United Kingdom > Isle of Man > Dispute resolution > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



Index of tables

  1. Dispute resolution
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals: Hall of Fame

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Leading individuals

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Next generation lawyers

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Who Represents Who

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Appleby has a ‘great team and covers all of its bases’; one client describes the practice as ‘first-class in the field of dispute resolutionand the leading firm on the Isle of Man’. A number of IOTA entities engaged the firm to handle their ongoing claim against Las Vegas real estate developer Rex Lewis pertaining to his alleged transfer of assets to the island to avoid creditors’ claims in the context of the collapse of his business. Christopher Cope and ‘super advocate’ Caren Pegg led the advice to members of an ultra-high-net-worth family with regard to a substantial personal insolvency case, and practice head Mark Holligon ‘is extremely good in the fields of freezing injunctions and insolvency’. A group led by Charles Davies is currently acting for the Financial Services Authority (FSA) in a director’s disqualification application arising from the winding-down of the Louis Group. Also notable are senior associate Claire Corkish (née Collister) and associate Erin Trimble-Cregeen.

Cains’ Peter Clucas represented the FSA in two appeals against previously imposed prohibition orders against individuals, and obtained a number of court approvals with regard to significant corporate transactions and the transfer of insurance schemes for clients such as LCLI. On the white-collar crime front, Robert Colquitt continues to advise Stuart Smalley & Coand its insurers on the civil law aspects of the imprisonment of a former consultant following the discovery of a large-scale fraud and theft scheme, and Hogan Lovells International LLP appointed him to enforce a number of Russian and English High Court judgments in the Isle of Man against a Russian individual. Seth Caine recently obtained an anti-suit injunction on behalf of Excalibur Almaz against a Japanese businessman to stop him from filing claims against the client in Texas; senior associate Jacqui Owens is also a key name to note and is currently defending Nedbank in claims pertaining to allegations of fraudulent payment requests.

One client has ‘never seen a firm with as much in-depth knowledge and the capabilities to use it so effectively to gain the upper hand in a case’ as Gough Law, which is ‘an impressive outfit at the top of its game in the context of heavyweight commercial and regulatory litigation’. The ‘balanced, practical and experienced’ Alan Gough is the senior name to note; he successfully represented billionaire businessman Albert Gubay and his estate in a dispute with a former employee who claimed Gubay had promised him a significant amount of money although there was no written evidence. Andrew Marshall, whose ‘drafting skills are second to none and who has that rare ability to condense complex issues into compelling, succinct explanations’, was recently promoted to director and advised the US Securities and Exchange Commission on the enforcement of a fraud case against a billionaire individual following a six-year-long dispute. Chiva Samani is now at Athena Law.

Callin Wild is known for the ‘exceptional level of specialist advice provided professionally in a clear and concise manner’ by its litigation experts, such as the ‘tough and thorough’ Fletcher Craine, ‘who distills complex issues to simple key points’. ‘Approachable and superb litigator’ Kathryn Clough has ‘strong specialist knowledge of building and construction-related matters’, while the ‘exceptional’ Jonathan Wild is currently working alongside Craine to advise an ultra-high-net-worth individual on the enforcement of a high-value divorce judgment, including the tracing and selling of luxury assets such as an aircraft and a boat. In other notable highlights, the group was appointed to handle a number of insolvency matters as well as professional indemnity cases. On the private client side, senior associate Marc Furness is another key name to note.

DQ’s Leanne McKeown ‘is by far the best employment lawyer on the island’, according to one client; ‘very bright young lawyer’ Adam Killip is also recommended. A team led by newly appointed senior associate Tara Cubbon and ‘calm, unflappable’ practice head Giles Hill is currently representing the new court-appointed liquidator of the Louis Group in appeals contesting said appointment, and McKeown is defending the insurer of a construction company with regard to a number of claims arising from an accident on a building site which has left an individual with serious injuries. On the trusts front, associate Jessica McManus continued to advise the trustee of the Pomfrett trust on issues arising from a confiscation order for around £3m against the settlor and a restraining order against the trust’s assets filed by the CPS.

At Keystone Law, 'the service provided is exceptionally high quality’ and ‘response times beat the competition’s – they always remain available to meet at short notice’, according to one client. The group is currently advising a liquidator on the Isle of Man law aspects of the winding down of a fund, and Bridgewaters appointed the firm to handle the recoveries of monies owed via security documents. Clients describe practice head Gillian Christian as ‘an outstanding lawyer’ who ‘regularly uses his wealth of knowledge, pragmatism and formidable presence in court’ to ‘steer them through complex legal disputes’. Solicitor Rachel Berry is part of the team guiding a corporate services provider through fraud and breach of contract claims and is also key name to note.

The dispute resolution team at Long & Humphrey ‘is capable of running serious litigation without input from off-island firms’ under the leadership of founding partner Rob Long. The ‘hardworking’ Oliver Helfrich, who ‘has a very good understanding of the local legal system and a pragmatic approach’, was recently promoted to partner. In recent highlights, the group intervened on behalf of joint liquidators with regard to the liquidation of a company and the subsequent application to the court for the sale of its assets. Helfrich led the advice to a wife and her sons in a contentious probate matter in which he filed several claims challenging the distributions set out in the deceased’s will, and the island’s former attorney general instructed the practice to defend him in misconduct proceedings in front of the Advocates Disciplinary Tribunal as well as the appeals arising from its decisions.

According to one client, Simcocks ‘stands head and shoulders above the crowd’; it acts for both claimants and defendants in multi-party commercial disputes, as well as in court applications in the context of schemes of arrangement and takeover proceedings. Practice head Christopher Arrowsmith ‘is excellent, knowledgeable, highly experienced in trust litigation and someone you want to get involved on your side’. He is currently acting for one of the defendants in a multi-million-dollar quantum claim concerning the design and storage of high-value computer components, while advocate Elizabeth Simpson is representing an international life insurance company in a multi-jurisdictional group action pertaining to insurance and regulatory law issues. The practice was boosted by the arrival of advocate and English solicitor Rebecca Paterson from Hill Dickinson LLP in Liverpool. Advocate Caroline Jennings, who ‘is an excellent non-confrontational communicator’ and heads the firm’s family law practice, is also noted.

M&P Legal consultant Nigel Cordwell is an expert in medical law and spearheads the firm's developing personal injury and medical negligence practice, which also includes Damian Molyneux, who specialises in defending claims brought against medical professionals or institutions both by direct instruction or via insurers. In recent highlights, various investors instructed the firm to advise on professional negligence claims against fund administrators, and a number of liquidators sought help with the recovery of worldwide assets. John Aycock regularly represents clients in inquests and has significant expertise in catastrophic injuries at birth cases. Also notable is counsel Christopher Brooks, who is developing an asbestos claims practice and manages the firm's relationship with Unite the Union. The firm also acts for clients in the data protection and regulatory space.

Noted particularly for its proficiency in insolvency disputes, MannBenham Advocates Limited's dispute resolution offering consists of Christopher Webb and Miles Benham. The group also regularly handles regulatory investigations, family law disputes and personal injury matters, as well as professional indemnity cases.

Litigation boutique Advocates Smith Taubitz Unsworth Ltd fields three partners who service a variety of clients, ranging from vulnerable individuals to large multinational entities. Civil and commercial dispute specialist Vicki Unsworth 'has a very high regard for her clients' time' and impresses with her 'empathetic and transparent approach', which enables her to 'provide a superior quality of service'; 'exemplary' criminal law expert Darren Taubitz handles 'serious and sensitive matters diligently with integrity and professionalism'. In recent highlights, the team defended a US citizen facing allegations of civil fraud in a trust dispute involving elements of US, Isle of Man and St Vincent and the Grenadines law. At the helm of the family law sub-team sits Hazel Smith, who is also a key contact.

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