The Legal 500

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Anderson Strathern

Living Wage
Work 0131 270 7700
Fax 0131 270 7788

Jonathan Guy

Work 0131 625 7299
Anderson Strathern


Partner specialising in commercial litigation, licensing, health and safety, education and regulatory law.


Trained Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service 2001-03; qualified 2003 and continued to work at the COPFS until 2005; DLA Piper 2005-06; Anderson Strathern LLP 2006 to present; partner 2013.


University of Dundee (LLB Hons); University of Edinburgh (Dip LP).


Tennis, golf, football.

Scotland: Crime, fraud and licensing


Within: Licensing

Anderson Strathern is noted for providing ‘strong support’ and always giving ‘assured advice, quickly’ to its licensing clients. The practice is led by experienced litigator, Jonathan Guy, who possesses ‘excellent knowledge and experience’ and whose focus is complex licensing court and appeal hearings. The group is retained by McDonald’s and advises the company on various licensing matters throughout Scotland, including various alterations related to its late hours licences. It is also instructed by a number of local authorities with respect to the application of taxi licences and appeals. Other clients include the National Trust for Scotland, Edinburgh Napier University and Dishoom. Senior Associate, Dominic Scullion, is also recommended.

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Scotland: Dispute resolution

Commercial litigation

Within: Commercial litigation

Anderson Strathern, which fields eight solicitor advocates in its team, has a strong market presence thanks to its coverage of high-value, complex and significant disputes across a broad spread of disciplines. Team head Fraser Geddes is experienced in domestic and cross-border litigation, arbitration and mediation; his areas of strength span property disputes, contentious construction and general commercial litigation. Katrina Lumsdaine leads both the contentious intellectual property team and contentious insolvency teams, and is also a Legal Member of the Scottish Tax Tribunal. Fiona Stephen heads up the real estate litigation practice. Alastair Dean and Jonathan Guy are other key partners in the group, whose other areas of strength include insurance, health and safety, and professional negligence. In addition to acting for private sector clients, such as SSE Plc and INEOS Manufacturing Scotland, the firm undertakes matters for public sector organisations; names on the client roster include HMRC, the Scottish Court Service and the Scottish Government. At senior associate level, Gillian Jamieson and Dominic Scullion are among the names to note.

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Scotland: Human resources

Health and safety

Within: Health and safety

Anderson Strathern  has ‘a well-deserved reputation’ for advising a wide mixture of insured corporates and public sector clients on health and safety matters. The practice head, Jonathan Guy is a recognised thought leader in the industry and is an external legal adviser to the HSE in Scotland. Senior associate Dominic Scullion’s ‘experience in complex high court litigation’ is offset by ‘good knowledge of the law and well-developed analytical skills’. The ‘conscientious’ senior associate, Sarah Phillips, handles health and safety matters for the Scottish Prison Service, and successfully defended numerous damages actions involving prisoner-on-prisoner assault, workplace accidents and excessive use of control and restraint techniques, in addition to death in custody cases. Other clients include INEOS, Scottish Water, Scotmid and the Highland Council.

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Scotland: Insurance

Personal injury: defender

Within: Personal injury: defender

Anderson Strathern has a team of ‘very competent and capable solicitors’ and is able to ‘provide the advice and support to busy clients’ the team handles personal injury defence for a range of insured businesses, but predominantly represents insurance companies through panel appointments. It also acts for public sector bodies, including as sole provider to the Scottish Prison Service. The ‘determined litigator’ senior associate Dominic Scullion is well regarded by clients and peers alike, and stands out for providing ‘quality service’ to clients. Jonathan Guy leads the practice, has experience acting for insurers in large loss and complex claims, including catastrophic injury, fraud, disease, multiple fatality and indemnity and policy coverage claims. Senior associate Sarah Phillips is also highly rated.

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Scotland: Public sector


Within: Education

Anderson Strathern's clients include universities, colleges and schools, for which it handles safeguarding, governance and regulatory work, in addition to peripheral matters such as employment, procurement and construction. The group acts as the external solicitors for the General Teaching Council for Scotland, which it advises on the spectrum of regulatory and disciplinary issues. Practice head Alun Thomas has niche expertise in education-related contentious work, particularly in the area of student contract disputes; he is assisting Perth College with a review following a critical tribunal decision relating to an aggrieved former employee. Fiona Killen stands out for having ‘a strong grasp’ of regulatory and legislative detail, as well as in the management of relations between the higher education sector and government, when changes to internal legislation are being considered. Highlights for Catriona Watt included representing two independent schools in relation to allegations of historic abuse being investigated by the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry. Solicitor advocate Jonathan Guy often represents clients at Additional Support Needs Tribunals (ASNTs) in cases under the Equality Act.

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