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Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Work 01483 252525
Fax 01483 252550
Cheltenham, Doha, Geneva, Guildford, London, Luxembourg and 3 more

Duncan Elson

Work 01483 252579
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.


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.

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€˜can match the big London names and provide an excellent result’. Highlights for β€˜tactically superb’ practice heads Duncan Elson and Stephen Burns included Elson’s representation of Fiat Chrysler on several terminations of authorised dealerships, and Burns’ handling of an unfair prejudice shareholder dispute. Senior associate Jamie Cartwright is also recommended.

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Debt recovery

Within: Debt recovery

At Charles Russell Speechlys LLP, Stephen Burns has expertise in automotive claims and auction law. Clients include British Car Auctions and We Buy Any Car. Duncan Elson heads the practice.

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South East: Private client

Charities and not-for-profit

Within: Charities and not-for-profit

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP is highly regarded for its national charities sector expertise. Key figures in the Guildford office include Duncan Elson, who is well known for handling contested legacies, and β€˜responsive’ senior associate Ben Smith. Clients include Cancer Research UK and Save the Children.

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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 β€˜ranks among the very best firms in the country for contentious trusts and probate’. Practice head Duncan Elson is β€˜bright, practical, engaging’ and β€˜an established household name in the field’, senior associate James Lister is β€˜simply outstanding’ and associate Rebecca Piper has β€˜a brilliant attention to detail’.

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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 practice β€˜provides a high level of personal service’ spanning a range of cases, from mental incapacity issues to inheritance tax planning. Key individuals include Duncan Elson and Sally Ashford, who was promoted to the partnership in 2015.

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Legal Developments by:
Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

  • Annual reports and annual general meetings

    With the Summer annual general meeting (AGM) season now on the horizon, many company secretaries and general counsel will be considering the preparation for their AGMs and the publication of their annual reports. 

    - Speechly Bircham

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