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Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

ONE LONDON SQUARE, CROSS LANES, GUILDFORD, SURREY, GU1 1UN, ENGLAND
Tel:
Work 01483 252525
Fax:
Fax 01483 252550
DX:
2436 GUILDFORD-1
Email:
Web:
www.charlesrussellspeechlys.com
Cheltenham, Doha, Dubai, Geneva, Guildford, London and 4 more

Duncan Elson

Tel:
Work 01483 252579
Email:
Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Work Department

Charities and not-for-profit, business disputes, family; commercial dispute resolution, contentious trusts and estates, litigation and dispute resolution, private client.

Position

Duncan is the head of the litigation and dispute resolution group and the specialist contentious trusts and estates group. He is also head of the Guildford office. He has over 30 years of practice covering a wide range of High Court litigation, mediation and alternative dispute resolution. His client base ranges from private individuals to charitable and corporate entities. These days the bulk of his work is involved in trust and estates (both contentious and as a professional trustee/executor and also as a court-appointed administrator and deputy) and family business restructuring and related shareholder issues. He also deals with contentious pension matters and professional negligence.


London: Private client

Contentious trusts and probate

Within: Contentious trusts and probate

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP is β€˜absolutely top of the tree in terms of its depth of expertise – it can handle everything. The combination of the Guildford and London offices gives it good options in terms of fee structures – this is not necessarily open to other firms with just a London office’. Head of department Graeme Kleiner β€˜really knows his stuff and is fantastically good at soothing troubled waters’. β€˜Excellent tactician’ Roberta Harvey β€˜handles complex matters with great skill’, and Tamasin Perkins is β€˜just excellent with clients. Her determination, good sense and diligence all prove to be a case winner’. The β€˜very knowledgeable and capable’ Duncan Elson has β€˜apparently more than 24 hours in his day, as he manages to be personally involved in all his cases’; and Suzanne Marriott is β€˜outstanding’. The team also has some β€˜superb younger lawyers coming up the ranks’: among the senior associates are the β€˜very calm’ Oliver Auld and Aimee West, who has β€˜a lovely manner with clients’, and associate Jessica Stafford is β€˜very hardworking and has an excellent grasp of the detail’. The team had a busy year working on some of the largest and highest-profile cases both domestically and internationally. In a very large ongoing fraud trial with claims in the Cayman Islands and the US, the team is representing AWAL’s subsidiaries in both jurisdictions. It also successfully represented the respondent to a freezing and asset preservation order obtained by his wife in England during the course of divorce proceedings in Israel - the order was granted ex parte and effectively prevented the client from operating his UK-based business, and the team ultimately had the orders discharged as well as obtaining an order for costs against his wife.

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Court of Protection

Within: Court of Protection

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has a team of β€˜very respected practitioners and is recognised for its particular expertise in international matters and acting for high-net-worth individuals with complicated tax and family arrangements’. The β€˜technically excellent, kind and compassionate’ Suzanne Marriott is β€˜one of the biggest names in the world of Court of Protection and is usually the first choice of professional deputy for disputes concerning wealthy individuals’; she is β€˜really a star in this area’, specialising in cross-border and UK mental capacity matters and regularly acting as an independent deputy for finances, health and welfare where the family is in dispute about residency and the tax implications of losing non-UK residency and domicile. The β€˜calm and enormously experienced’ Duncan Elson has β€˜a good eye for his clients’ priorities and how to achieve these quickly and cleanly’. Senior probate and trust manager Grainne Feeney β€˜is becoming well known for her work in this area. Again, she is technically competent and timely in her responses to any questions raised’.

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South East: Dispute resolution

Commercial litigation: Kent, Surrey and Sussex

Within: Leading individuals

Duncan Elson - Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Within: Commercial litigation: Kent, Surrey and Sussex

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP β€˜goes over and above the call of duty’ for clients in the automotive, food and IT sectors. The team represented hairstylist Josh Wood in relation to his business, Josh Wood Hair, in an unfair prejudice shareholder dispute with a former business partner, eventually settling the claim. Other clients include Infor, which the client continued to represent in multiple disputes in 2016 including a reseller agreement dispute in the Middle East. Other highlights included representing We Buy Any Car in a dispute with an auction house pertaining to card transactions at the auction stage. The team is led by experienced high court litigator Duncan Elson, who β€˜is truly excellent very experienced and knowledgeable’; supply chain and automotive sector specialist Jamie Cartwright who β€˜is an up-and-coming star’; and Stephen Burns, who β€˜is a tenacious, but calm and tactical lawyer’.

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Debt recovery

Within: Debt recovery

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP β€˜has an excellent understanding of each client’s business’. The firm focuses on servicing commercial clients on the full spectrum of debt recovery needs, as well as having experience in property debt collection and finance defaults for debtors and lenders. The team continued to advise British Car Auctions on multiple debt recovery matters including unpaid fees and debt litigation. It also regularly assists ITV with debt recovery issues arising from programme and IP licensing matters, often involving cross-border litigation. Other clients include We Buy Any Car, Fiat Chrysler and Infor. The practice is led by the highly regarded Jamie Cartwright, who was promoted to partner in May 2016 and took over responsibility for the practice from Duncan Elson.

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South East: Private client

Charities and not-for-profit

Within: Charities and not-for-profit

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP provides β€˜a gold-standard service’, offering β€˜clear and focused advice and a good application of wider experience’. The firm counts a number of national and global charities and not-for-profit organisations as its clients, some key names including Samaritans and Cancer Research UK. The team acts for Save the Children on all aspects of the management of its leasehold property portfolio, advising on acquisitions, renewals and disposals. The practice is headed by the β€˜vastly experienced’ Duncan Elson, who β€˜has managed a huge range of disputes in his time, and is always calm and accommodating’. Other key figures include tax and succession expert George Duncan; Sally Ashford, who advises on legacy administration and campaign literature; and Ben Smith, who advises charity clients on the full range of employment matters. The β€˜knowledgeable, trustworthy and professional’ Kate Parkinson is also a name to note.

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Contentious trusts and probate

Within: Leading individuals

Duncan Elson - Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Within: Contentious trusts and probate

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP is β€˜top of the range in its field’, and the team β€˜has an unwavering commitment to its clients, excellent knowledge and a no-nonsense approach’. The firm receives mandates from numerous major charities, advising on trust, probate and charity litigation along with contentious Court of Protection matters. Litigation partner Duncan Elson is β€˜a statesman of the field’ and β€˜can smooth over troubled disputes with a calm word’, and practice head Graeme Kleiner is β€˜known for handling complex international trust disputes, fighting for his clients with great tenacity while never losing sight of the pragmatics of trying to reach a commercial deal’. Cancer Research UK is a key client.

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Personal tax, trust and probate: Kent, Surrey, Sussex

Within: Personal tax, trust and probate: Kent, Surrey, Sussex

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP’s Guildford-based team β€˜has all the resources and quality of its London colleagues’. Clients recommend the firm for complex will drafting and inheritance tax planning; other areas of expertise include multimillion-pound estate administrations, Court of Protection applications and wealth protection for high-net-worth individuals. Non-contentious department leader Sally Ashford is β€˜a very well-respected and pragmatic lawyer’ and dispute resolution head Duncan Elson is β€˜the go-to person in the region for family legacy and trust disputes’. Senior associate Gareth Walliss (who is β€˜everything one could hope for in a professional adviser’) is also recommended.

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Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

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