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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 > North West > Private client > Charities and not-for-profit > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



Index of tables

  1. Charities and not-for-profit
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1
    • Graeme Hughes - Brabners LLP

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Brabners LLP has the ‘very best charity lawyers in the North West; the level and breadth of expertise is second to none across a whole range of issues’. The ‘very pragmatic’ Stephen Claus is a ‘recognised leader in this field. He is calm, collected and immensely knowledgeable, with real insider knowledge of charities law and how the Charities Commission works’. Associate Graeme Hughes is ‘very professional and accommodating. His pragmatism, sound advice and wisdom facilitate the smooth managing of complex matters’. Property partner Angela Clearkin frequently assists on property transactions relating to charity matters. The ‘exemplary’ team works with charities and third sector clients as well as registered providers (housing associations). It also has particular expertise in advising high-net-worth individuals and sports personalities on their charitable giving with many charitable foundations of sports clubs. It also advises a range of other charities that undertake activities relating to sport. Robert Nieri recently joined as partner from Freeths LLP in the East Midlands.

At Kuit Steinart Levy LLP  ‘everything it does is cooperative, innovative and the team is prompt at responding to all our queries’. Practice head Graham Wood  has a ‘great understanding of charities law and has immense clarity of thought and invaluable technical expertise’. The team advises on the full range of issues such as on the establishment of new charitable trusts, companies and other entities, charity governance and constitutional issues as well as contested legacies and gift aid advice. The firm is also skilled at advising charities on commercial contracts, commercial property, disputes and on employment issues. Newly promoted partner Lauren Clyne  advises on charity law issues such as on the establishment of new charities. The team continues to advise the Stoller Charitable Trust on all its legal requirements, and acts for DanceSyndrome,  is a charity aimed at enabling the learning disabled to lead and participate in dance classes.

Pannone Corporate LLP advises a large number of charitable and other social enterprise clients. Senior associate Gareth Birch  ‘responds quickly to queries and has a detailed knowledge of the various issues’. Birch acts for several charities on the acquisition and disposal of retail property together with general portfolio management and also deals with the property aspects of charity restructuring. He also routinely advises the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Blackpool and North Lancashire branch on various issues. On charity matters Karl Williams  (a partner in debt recovery), senior associates Sarah Bazaraa  and Jonny Scholes  and associate Alexandria Winstanley  (all three of whom specialise in dispute resolution) ‘display an excellent work ethic’. Other key clients include Manchester Sport and Leisure Trust, Manchester Foster Care Association and Big Life Group.

The ‘very knowledgeable and extremely personable’ Yorke Eaton  at Addleshaw Goddard  is ‘able to put difficult or complicated issues across to clients in a manner that they understand’. Yorke has wide experience of advising charities on a host of issues including on the establishment and registration of new entities, governance and trustee issues. The team continues to advise NFU Charitable Trust on issues such as commercial contracts, charity land transactions, restructuring issues and dealing with other ad hoc queries. Other active clients include Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Bedingfield’s Trust and National Coal Mining Museum.

Counterculture Partnership LLP   ‘responds promptly to inquiries and gives timely and relevant advice’. Keith Arrowsmith is a ‘very calm, sympathetic and efficient adviser’. It acts for a number of major clients such as Children’s Media Conference, the British Youth Music Theatre, Manchester College and the National College for the Creative and Cultural Industries.

Michael Young heads the department at Hibberts LLP. The group specialises in complex charity and unregistered conveyancing. In these matters it is assisted by the firm's agriculture and commercial property departments.

Hill Dickinson LLP acts for a broad range of large, medium and small charitable and not-for-profit organisations as well as social enterprises on various matters such as constitutional issues, governance and employment matters. It also advises these entities on group structurings, fundraising, trading and compliance issues. Mark Fitzgibbon has a strong profile in the North West third sector community. Jeff Middleton advises various charities on employment related matters. Paul Baker advises private clients on tax-efficient philanthropy (such as the creation and administration of private charitable trusts) and Luke Green  frequently advises academy trust company clients on charitable issues. Significant clients include Big Life Group, Amnesty (UK) Group, BHA for Equality and the Manchester Literature Festival.

The ‘knowledgeable’ Paul Knight at Mills & Reeve LLP leads a cross-disciplinary charities team in Manchester. He provides ‘realistic solutions and pragmatic advice. He also takes the time to understand the client’s business and to listen to you as a client’. An impressive roster of clients include BBC Children in Need and the Manchester Young People’s Theatre.Mark Hovell has been leading the advice to the Greater Manchester Sports Partnership (GreaterSport aims to change lives through physical activity and sport). Recently the team has advised GreaterSport on sponsorship terms and has provided specialist charity law advice for inclusion in a report by GreaterSport to a football club on the club’s options for creating a new charitable foundation.

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