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Hugh James

Work 029 2022 4871
Fax 029 2038 8222
Cardiff, LONDON

Roman Kubiak

Hugh James

Work Department

Contested Wills, Trusts and Estates


Roman Kubiak is a Partner in the Contested Wills, Trusts and Estates Department at Hugh James. He joined Hugh James in 2012, having previously worked at a top 200 law firm, specialising in inheritance and trust disputes.

Roman advises individuals, high street banks, trust companies and professionals in relation to contested will, trust and estate disputes including:

  • Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 claims;
  • contentious probate and estate administration disputes;
  • trust disputes;
  • equitable remedies including proprietary estoppel, resulting trust and constructive trust claims; and
  • will disputes.

Roman has particular experience in relation to the following:

  • Successfully acting for claimant in a claim brought under the following four heads:
    • the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975;
    • proprietary estoppel and / or constructive trust;
    • donatio mortis causa; and
    • delivery up of items.
  • Successful proprietary estoppel counterclaim relating to farmland following a four day trial.
  • Advising major banks and building societies in relation to the following:
    • break up of protective trusts;
    • citations;
    • will disputes;
    • estate disputes; and
    • trust disputes.
  • Successful mediation of the following claims:
    • will disputes;
    • Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 claims;
    • proprietary estoppel claims; and
    • resulting trust claims.
  • Acting for clients regarding estates with foreign assets.

Roman also regularly provides seminars and training to solicitors on contentious probate issues.

Roman is a full member of the Association of Contentious Trust and Probate Specialists (ACTAPS) and the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) having successfully completed both diplomas and has also successfully passed the STEP Advanced Certificate in Trust Disputes qualification.


  • Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 claims;
  • contentious probate and estate administration disputes;
  • trust disputes;
  • equitable remedies including proprietary estoppel, resulting trust and constructive trust claims; and
  • will disputes


Career history

  • Trained: Martin Smalley & Co. Nottingham
  • Moved to Withy King LLP on qualification as a solicitor into the Inheritance and Trust Disputes Department
  • Joined Hugh James: 2012
  • Associate at Hugh James: 2013
  • Senior Associate at Hugh James: 2015
  • Partner: 2016





  • Keele University – Law with English (Dual Honours) – 2:1 LLB (Hons)
  • Nottingham Law School – LPC
  • ACTAPS – Diploma (CTAPS)
  • STEP – Diploma (TEP)
  • STEP Advanced Certificate in Trust Disputes


Mountain biking, cooking, listening to music, guitar-playing.

Wales: Private client

Agriculture and estates

Within: Agriculture and estates

Leveraging the firm's overarching expertise at wealth management, private client, property and contentious probate matters, the 'reliable and highly efficient' multi-disciplinary team at Hugh James provides a 'very strong and comprehensive service' to a wide range of farming clients including high-net-worth landowners and farmers, as well as numerous public sector entities. The 'hugely respected' Matthew Evans regularly handles work for agricultural clients as part of his broad-ranging wealth management practice. Particularly accomplished at dealing with agricultural estates, Evans' recent success in the high-profile "Cowshed Cinderella" litigation has generated numerous new agricultural and proprietary estoppel instructions, including acting on a new proprietary estoppel dispute whose assets exceed £7m. The 'very tenacious' Roman Kubiak regularly handles contentious probate matters for farming clients and has 'developed an excellent reputation as someone who really understands his clients and their complex problems, and is able to deliver an effective strategy which they understand'. Property litigator Robert Phillips  has niche expertise advising on development-phase property disputes, including all aspects of agricultural tenancy law. Sarah Cash 'provides a high level of service' to high-net-worth clients including those in the farming industry on estate planning and in administering high-value estates usually involving a diversity of assets such as family company shares, farming partnerships, horses and foreign property.

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Contentious trusts and probate

Within: Leading individuals

Roman Kubiak - Hugh James

Within: Contentious trusts and probate

'Arguably the best Welsh firm for contentious trusts and probate matters', Hugh James continues to pick up a significant volume of work, 'including taking on, and excelling at, high-net-worth and cross border matters'. 'A natural and dynamic leader', team head Roman Kubiak 'really understands his clients and their complex problems, and is able to deliver effective strategies which they understand'. The 'very tenacious' Kubiak excels at handling high-value cross border matters and recently represented a director and wife of the settlor in relation to trusts based in Isle of Man and British Virgin Islands with underlying companies registered in Montenegro. The 'hugely respected' Matthew Evans heads the firm's wealth management team and has a particular focus on handling complex agricultural and proprietary estoppel cases. In spite of his relatively junior status, solicitor Vlad MacDonald-Munteanu  has already developed significant courtroom experience both on his own and also assisting Evans on high-value proprietary estoppel cases including the recent much publicised Davies v Davies case. The team was also bolstered in September 2017 by the arrival of senior associate Richard Adams  from Swansea based firm Goldstones.

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Personal tax, trusts and probate

Within: Personal tax, trusts and probate

'Rightly recognised as the heavyweight firm in Wales for estates, trusts and probate', Hugh James six-partner team includes numerous 'talented practitioners and the depth of resources to take on substantial work'. Matthew Evans has a 'genuine commitment to excellence'; he heads the firm's overarching wealth management group and is predominantly focused on handling contentious matters including proprietary estoppel cases, an area which he has developed a leading reputation as a result of handling some landmark cases - including most notably acting for the claimant in the much vaunted Davies v Davies litigation. 'A natural and dynamic leader', the 'very impressive' Roman Kubiak heads the firm's contested wills, trusts and estates team and is noted for his 'deep knowledge of estates and trusts law'. On the non-contentious front, Sarah Cash 'provides a high level of service' to an impressive client base that includes many high-net-worth individuals, who she advises on their tax planning, including establishing lifetime trusts and will preparation, as well as on the administration of estates. Eleanor Evans manages a team dealing with estates and trusts administration on behalf of financial institution and trust corporation clients. Evans regularly handles multimillion-pound estates including her ongoing work administering a complex estate worth in excess of £5m, consisting of significant shareholdings, business interests and international assets. 'Communicative and knowledgeable'  managing partner Alun Jones was integral to the development of the firm's volume-based wealth management services, which it provides to major UK high street financial services brands. Senior associate Andrew Jones is also recommended, particularly for handling tax and estate planning matters for high-net-worth international clients.

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