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  1. Pensions
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The ‘technically excellent’ David Wright at DLA Piper UK LLP is noted for his ‘very strong leadership’. Ben Miller is adept at advising on large occupational pensions schemes. Jeremy Harris and Claire Bell are ‘sensible, pragmatic and responsive’. The group advises on the full spectrum of complex pension issues for clients such as Manchester Airport Group and the Trustees of Warburtons Pensions Arrangements.

Eversheds LLP fields a ‘large and well-resourced team that is very strong technically’. Clients include DSM Nutritional Products and Thomas Cook Group UK DC Pension Scheme. The ‘very sensibleEle Lovering provides ‘extremely clear advice’ and is recommended alongside the ‘thorough and pragmaticJon Walters. Charmian Johnson joined the team from Squire Patton Boggs in May 2016.

Pinsent Masons LLP is ‘full of outstanding individuals’, including the ‘very knowledgeableStephen Scholefield, who leads the team and ‘explains really complex and technical issues in layman’s terms’; and Pippa Read. The ‘commercially aware’ team advises clients including Balfour Beatty Pension Fund and Rentokil Initial.

Squire Patton Boggs’ team includes the ‘very professional and sensibleDavid Griffiths, who is ‘great with clients’. Charmian Johnson joined Eversheds LLP. Clients include the ABB Plan and the trustees of the ICM Computer Group Pension & Life Assurance Scheme.

At DWF, Tim Green handles the full range of pension issues with particular expertise in PPF-related issues. Clients include Yorkshire Building Society, Standard Life DC Master Trust and Princes.

Clients of Gateley Plc include CILIP, the British Medical Association and Frank Roberts & Sons Limited Pension Scheme. Patrick Kennedy heads the team, which advises on innovative funding issues such as asset backed funding structures for pensions.

Team head Barry Gibb at Hill Dickinson LLP frequently advises employers and trustee boards on scheme closures, funding solutions and pensions restructuring. Clients include A&P Pension Scheme, Carr’s Group and the trustees of the William Jackson Pension Plan.

At Addleshaw Goddard LLP, the ‘excellent’ Rachel Rawnsley divides her time between the Leeds and Manchester offices and leads a team that acts for Norcross plc and the trustees of the Kellogg Pension Scheme.

Brabners LLP advises trustee bodies, employers and individuals across a broad range of pension issues including pensions and FAS Ombudsman complaints. Associate Philip Woolham is a key contact.

Irwin Mitchell recruited the ‘experienced and knowledgeable’ Andrew Ashley Taylor from DWF, who is skilled at advising on all aspects of occupational pension schemes. Key clients include National Grid.

Shoosmiths LLP’s ‘reliable’ team adopts a ‘commercial approach when solving problems’. London Metropolitan University, James Hall Pension Trustees and Civica UK are clients. The ‘very proactive and responsivePaul Carney is recommended.

At Weightmans LLP, Mark Poulston and Jane Marshall are recommended. Clients include Pochin’s, Pertemps and the Football Pools.

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Legal Developments in North West for Pensions

  • Companies should plan now to minimise their pension protection levy

    The amount that pension schemes have to pay to the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) for the year 2006/07 may have increased by as much as five times the previous year's levy. Employers who ultimately bear the cost of many pension schemes will need to make plans now to ensure the levy payable for the year 2008/09 is kept to a minimum.
    - Stephenson Harwood

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