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Wortley Byers LLP

CATHEDRAL PLACE, BRENTWOOD, CM14 4ES, ENGLAND
Tel:
Work 01277 268368
Fax:
Fax 01277 268330
DX:
96155 BRENTWOOD-2
Email:
Web:
www.wortleybyers.co.uk

South East: Corporate and commercial

Corporate and commercial: Essex
Corporate and commercial: Essex - ranked: tier 3

Tees Law

Wortley Byers LLP

Tees Law's corporate practice is able to 'satisfy client expectations in relation to response times, appropriateness of advice, team strength and value for money'. Its main focus lies on M&A, acquisition finance, shareholder agreements and joint venture matters, as well as commercial distribution, trading and agency agreements. Recent highlights include the representation of Keswick European Holdings during the £25m sale of its UK and Romanian logistics businesses to a Japanese corporation. Xpediator, which acquired Benfleet Forwarding for over £10m and Regional Express for £2m, was also a key client during 2017. The 'pragmatic and commercial' Richard Payne joined the Chelmsford office from Aquabridge in summer 2017, while associate Pieta Daglish joined from Herbert Smith Freehills LLP.

The 'approachable' corporate and commercial practice at Wortley Byers LLP is recommended for its 'exceptional "one-stop-shop" service and overall time and cost effectiveness', as well as its 'above-average expertise in the pharmaceutical and healthcare sector'. Here, the respective key clients include Warneford Healthcare and Claridon Group, as well as Martindale Pharma and its parent company Bolt Equity, both of which were advised on Bolt Equity's acquisition by French group Ethypharm. Other strengths include intellectual property and outsourcing projects, as well as corporate work in the leisure, transport and engineering industries. The 'focused' Sue Dowman 'always finds the time to deal with issues promptly'. Lucy Folley represented Benfleet Forwarding's shareholders during the multi-million-pound sale of all of the company's issued share capital.

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South East: Dispute resolution

Commercial litigation: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx
Commercial litigation: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx - ranked: tier 3

Tees Law

Tees Law is 'a solid firm with some very impressive individuals'; clients find 'the service to be excellent, the responses prompt, the knowledge base wide, and the fees fair when compared to other law firms'. The dispute resolution practice's clients include a number of household names, including Greene King Brewing and Retailing, for which Justin Robinson continues to act in multiple cases concerning claims against individuals, partnerships, pub companies, non-league football teams and social clubs throughout England and Wales. In another key mandate, Caroline Metcalf (who is noted for her 'down-to-earth, practical approach, coupled with a careful eye to cost') acted for a commercial property owner in a claim arising from land that was subject to a restriction preventing it from being sold without the agreement of a company that had been struck off the companies register; Metcalf secured an undertaking that the former directors of the company would release the client's land from the restriction.

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Commercial litigation: Essex
Commercial litigation: Essex - ranked: tier 3

Tees Law

Wortley Byers LLP

The commercial litigation practice of Tees Law in Chelmsford stands out for its 'competent, timely and effective service, responsiveness and attention to client needs'. Its long-established expertise includes disputes regarding contracts, professional negligence, property and construction, and insolvency, as well as trusts and probate, while unjust enrichment and misrepresentation claims form new working areas for the team. In 2017, the lawyers represented the National Farmers' Union in connection with the administration of Wellgrain, mainly regarding compensation claims from farmers and in order to enforce a change in conduct of the administration. In another highlight, solicitor Holly McColgan led the representation of air travel equipment manufacturer AEM in a dispute with a Saudi Arabian company, which concerned the recovery of loaned goods held by a German company. Clients recommend 'thorough, professional and commercially minded' team lead David Perry, who is also a 'skilled mediator and superb tactician'.

The 'superb, very professional and helpful' litigation practice of Wortley Byers LLP delivers 'a strong performance, a good balance of pragmatism, first-rate response times and a reasonable pricing dynamic'. It covers a range of services, including contract and negligence disputes and banking, employment, property and insolvency litigation, as well as general contentious corporate management and partnership matters. Review Hotels, Brentwood School, Bank of Cyprus and Donald Moody Investments feature in the current client base. The 'approachable' Nick Hatchett 'explains the matter at hand very concisely' and 'manages contentious situations very well'. The second key partner is the 'very competent, measured and thoughtful' Wendy Beach, who 'brings years of experience to her role' and has an 'impressive ability to assimilate information and draw conclusions'. 'Responsive' employment specialist Sarah Stanyer is also recommended.

Leading individuals

Nick Hatchett - Wortley Byers LLP

Next generation lawyers

Holly McColgan - Tees Law

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South East: Finance

Insolvency and corporate recovery
Insolvency and corporate recovery - ranked: tier 4

Tees Law

The 'time-conscious and commercially minded' insolvency team at 'solid and traditional firm' Tees Law has a 'strong following from local businesses and directors'. It has experience in claims concerning wrongful trading, illegal dividends, directors' loans and disqualification. The 'accurate and decisive' team lead David Perry, who 'combines sensible advice with an encyclopaedic knowledge of insolvency law', represented the liquidator of a construction company in its undervalue-transaction claim against a shadow director, which resulted in the recovery of more than £200,000. In another highlight, Perry acted for over a hundred farming clients in relation to the administration of Wellgrain, which included claims brought on behalf of National Farmers' Union members seeking the release of stored grain, as well as monetary compensation. Solicitor Holly McColgan assisted the ex-wife and son of a bankrupt with their claim of interest in a property owned by the bankrupt. Begbies Traynor, LB Insolvency, CVR Global and FRP Advisory are regular clients.

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South East: Human resources

Employment: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx
Employment: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx - ranked: tier 2

Tees Law

The employment practice at Tees Law is headed by Robert Whitaker, who splits his time between the firm's Cambridge, Chelmsford and Bishop's Stortford offices and has more than 17 years' experience in TUPE matters and complex performance and conduct disputes involving senior staff and management. The practice's recent work includes advising on settlements for senior executives, particularly in the technology and telecommunications sectors, handling TUPE matters concerning the logistics, service, manufacturing and agriculture sectors,  and advising the fundraising Regulator on issues related to the gig economy and zero hours contracts.

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Employment: Essex
Employment: Essex - ranked: tier 3

Tees Law

Wortley Byers LLP

During 2017, Tees Law continued to advise senior executives and organisations from the agricultural, education, civil aviation, professional services and logistics sectors, particularly with regard to exit negotiations, settlement agreements, TUPE, discrimination and whistle-blowing tribunal litigation, as well as giving data protection workshops. In a recent highlight, the team advised its key client, the Institute of Fundraising, on the employment and TUPE matters arising from its merger with PFRA. Partner Robert Whitaker, recently promoted senior associate Jonathan Insley and associate Katherine Jameson make up the practice.

Wortley Byers LLP's 'excellent and strong' employment practice mainly acts for companies, but also saw a recent increase in the representation of individuals. 2017 was also characterised by a higher load of tribunal proceedings, unfair dismissal claims in the construction industry and matters relating to working time and agency worker regulations, while the representation of clients in TUPE, redundancy, disciplinary, grievance, and post-termination restrictions proceedings continued. 'Outstanding' associate Sarah Stanyer, who has 'plenty of experience, a high level of responsiveness and good empathy', and litigation partner Wendy Beach, who 'offers commercially practical advice in a reassuring manner', are the key contacts. Clients include Chigwell London, Brentwood School, Shadforth Pharmaceutical and Fire Integrity.

Next generation lawyers

Jonathan Insley - Tees Law

Katherine Jameson - Tees Law

Sarah Stanyer - Wortley Byers LLP

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South East: Insurance

Personal injury: claimant
Personal injury: claimant - ranked: tier 3

Tees Law

'Go-to firm' Tees Law fields a 'first-rate, organised, efficient and client-driven' personal injury practice which 'manages to blend traditional values with a modern approach' and 'provides an excellent and dedicated service'. The team typically handles claims relating to employers', public and product liability, historic sexual abuse, fatalities, and industrial diseases, as well as military and road traffic accident cases. The highlights of 2017 included a social worker's work-related stress and psychiatric injury claim, which was settled for £152,500, as well as the representation of a claimant who suffered from a head injury, vertigo, dizziness and post-traumatic amnesia after a head-on car collision. Clients recommend 'extremely experienced and capable' partner David Jacobs , who 'has a reassuring manner and a good understanding of the merits and risks of settlement terms', and paralegal Nicola Holtham .

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South East: Private client

Agriculture and estates
Agriculture and estates - ranked: tier 2

Tees Law

Tees Law is noted for its 'strong presence in the region and good depth within the team'. Headed by the 'effective, pro-active and user-friendly' David Miller, the practice handles a wide-ranging workload (covering acquisition and disposal of farm land and estates, tenancy advice under the Agricultural Holdings Act and Farm Business Tenancy regimes, and strategic land arrangements, among other matters) for private landowners and family-owned agricultural businesses both small and large. It also acts for a number of agricultural bodies, including the National Farmers' Union and Country Land and Business Association. In an illustration of the firm's track record handling farm sales and acquisitions, Miller acted alongside Sarah Pateman on the purchase of more than 290 acres of land in Cambridgeshire, which involved advising on overages for the benefit of DEFRA and the transfer of Basic Payment Scheme entitlements including a retention provision and re-letting of the land under a new farm business tenancy. Also recommended are Govan Bramley, who regularly advises landowners on strategic land agreements.

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Contentious trusts and probate
Contentious trusts and probate - ranked: tier 3

Tees Law

Tees Law fields a team of contentious trusts experts who 'respond quickly to queries with sound, well-informed advice based on expert knowledge'. Practice head Caroline Metcalf is singled out for her 'exceptional legal clarity and ability to communicate in a highly effective and personable manner'. She leads a team that has an extensive track record in complex cases arising from estates, inheritance issues, trusts and wills, as well as Inheritance Act cases, Court of Protection applications and cases involving mental capacity issues. Recent work includes acting for a client in a claim for reasonable financial provision from the estate of their late mother, which involved complex issues arising from a number of legacies in the will.

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Family: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx
Family: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx - ranked: tier 3

Tees Law

Tees Law is growing its family law practice, adding three solicitors to the Bishop's Stortford office in 2017, including Elizabeth Gale, who joined in March 2017 from Withers LLP and has extensive experience acting for high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth financial cases, often involving complex international business structures, remuneration and benefits schemes and trusts. Her expertise compliments the practice's track record in financial matters involving estate planning and farming land, financial remedy proceedings involving property, and matters involving overseas assets. Other key figures include Sally Powell, who heads the practice and is noted for her collaborative law expertise; and David Redfern, who handles complex financial issues.

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Family: Essex
Family: Essex - ranked: tier 2

Tees Law

Wortley Byers LLP

The 'experienced, competent and capable' family practice at the 'very good' Tees Law has a 'hardworking, client-focused' approach and 'trains its lawyers diligently'. The team is particularly recommended for its 'incredibly fast response times, high business acumen, amazing industry knowledge and attention to detail'. Divorce, separation, financial and domestic abuse proceedings are the main focus areas, with additional niche experience in national and international child abduction and cohabitation disputes, as well as pre- and post-nuptial agreements. Recent highlights include the representation of a husband, who was primarily based in Saudi Arabia, in high-net-worth divorce proceedings involving historic allegations of domestic abuse dealt with by the criminal courts. 'Calm, helpful and supportive' key practitioner Joshua Coombe, who 'gives sensible advice', is supported by senior legal executive Sue Buxton-Smith. Solicitor Donald Fraser left in 2017 to work as a consultant for two firms in Hertfordshire and London.

The 'excellent and vastly experienced' family practice at 'well-established firm' Wortley Byers LLP has a 'pragmatic and highly professional approach' and a 'long-standing, exceptional reputation' of 'representing clients in a patient, conciliatory and effective manner'. Collaboratively trained partner and mediator Louise Margiotta handles divorce and financial remedy disputes involving substantial wealth, family businesses, company directors and inherited wealth, in addition to private and public law children and domestic abuse matters and the negotiation of marital, civil partnership and separation agreements. She represented a husband who was paraplegic and had complex medical needs in £1.6m financial remedy proceedings involving a large property portfolio. Solicitor Caroline Andrews joined from Giles Wilson LLP  in 2017 and brings niche expertise in fertility and surrogacy matters.

Leading individuals

Louise Margiotta - Wortley Byers LLP

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Personal tax, trusts and probate: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx
Personal tax, trusts and probate: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx - ranked: tier 2

Tees Law

Tees Law attracts praise for its 'swift, efficient, friendly yet professional, appropriate and relevant' service. Cathy Izzard heads the practice, which acts for a large high-net-worth client base on the administration of high-value estates, often with an international or agricultural dimension. It also manages a sizeable portfolio of trusts, and acts for a number of high-profile charities. Nicola Haver is 'a good listener and quick to sum up what needs to be done'.

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Personal tax, trusts and probate: Essex
Personal tax, trusts and probate: Essex - ranked: tier 2

Tees Law

Wortley Byers LLP

The private client practice at Tees Law provides 'a good overall service and appropriate advice', assisting domestic and international clients with wills and succession planning in business and agriculture, probate and relief claims, lasting powers of attorney and Court of Protection matters, as well as lifetime tax planning and the creation, administration and termination of trusts. A highlight of 2017 was the advice provided to a private individual regarding the structuring of their multi-million-pound business, farming and personal assets in order to secure their second wife and childrens' future. Chelmsford-based team lead Ian Johnston, associates Oli Budino and Heather Fuff, and solicitor Hayley Weston are the names to note.

The 'professional, timely and efficient' private client department at Wortley Byers LLP 'keeps clients well informed throughout the process', applies 'prompt internal communication' and provides 'invaluable, appropriate advice'. Its range of work covers tax, trusts and probate. 'Professional, prompt and understanding' inheritance tax, Court of Protection and elderly client specialist Nicola Healy and 'knowledgeable, compassionate and quick-minded' property and trust expert John Southan are recommended. Head of private client Anne Ellis handles residential conveyancing. Solicitor Herman Cheung joined from Gepp & Sons Solicitors LLP in November 2017, bringing experience in Court of Protection work, among other areas. Poh Shan Chong retired in June 2017.

Next generation lawyers

Ian Johnston - Tees Law

Nicola Healy - Wortley Byers LLP

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South East: Public sector

Education
Education - ranked: tier 4

Tees Law

Tees Law is 'a highly professional and competent outfit, with a justifiably growing reputation in the market for education work'. The practice's clients span a variety of player within the sector, including local authority maintained schools, voluntary aided schools, academies, and further and higher education institutions. It also acts for individuals on issues concerning access to education, particularly where special educational needs are involved. Senior associate and practice head Polly Kerr is 'a very creative lawyer who has an excellent knowledge of education law, a sharp eye for detail, and a noticeable commitment to her clients that goes above and beyond what is normally seen.'

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South East: Real estate

Commercial property: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx
Commercial property: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx - ranked: tier 3

Tees Law

Tees Law is praised for its 'very high level of service' and for fielding a commercial property team that 'knows and understand the client's business'. Clients include institutional investors, corporate occupiers, private individuals and developers, for which the practice provides a comprehensive service covering site acquisitions, commercial property sales and purchases, real estate financing, and landlord and tenant work. On the development front, practice head David Miller led a team acting for a consortium of developers and private landowners on the sale of land with the benefit of planning permission for a large number of residential housing units as well as schooling and commercial property. Other key figures include Govan Bramley, who has an extensive track record in housing developments, and associate Bilyana Munic, who is singled out for her 'good knowledge and understanding of the client's business'.

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Commercial property: Essex
Commercial property: Essex - ranked: tier 3

Tees Law

Wortley Byers LLP

Tees Law's 'outstanding and professional' commercial property team focuses on areas including the drafting of promotion and option agreements and overage deeds, as well as lease renewals, landlord and tenant matters and site developments. Recent highlights include the representation of a local consortium in the completion of a £10m promotion agreement, as well as the assistance provided to a local developer regarding the acquisition of a former garage site. Partner and 'exemplary professional' Mark Carter in Saffron Walden and the 'efficient' Chelmsford-based Graeme Atkinson are the key individuals, supported by assistant solicitor Aldene Derrick. Assistant solicitor Daniel Fairs joined the Chelmsford office from Fisher Jones Greenwood LLP in October 2017.

The 'pragmatic, punctual and proactive' commercial property department of Wortley Byers LLP is 'very perceptive of clients' needs' and 'sets a high standard' through 'first-class industry knowledge', a 'very progressive business view' and 'detailed, comprehensive advice of exceptional quality'. Development, finance and secured lending, landlord and tenant, and property management and funding matters, as well as investment acquisitions, comprise the range of services.  The practice has long-standing relationships with Stonebond Properties, MCC Developments and William Thompson Homes, while being retained on several banking panels. Beresfords Group, Ingleton Wood and Hitachi Kokusai Electric in Germany instructed the team for the first time in 2017. Clients recommend 'strong negotiator and excellent leader' Jane Winfield, whose 'knowledge of property law is second to none', 'friendly, approachable and hardworking' partner Aaron Cane, 'insightful and responsive' solicitor David Grainger and 'indispensable' conveyancing specialist Tom Moulsdale. Associate Laura Harrison is another key member of the team.

Leading individuals

Jane Winfield - Wortley Byers LLP

Next generation lawyers

Aaron Cane - Wortley Byers LLP

Laura Harrison - Wortley Byers LLP

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South East: TMT

Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 4

Wortley Byers LLP

With a 'brilliant service and response',¬†Wortley Byers LLP¬†‚Äėalways lays out all the details clearly and concisely‚Äô for IP instructions. The firm attracts clients from a wide spectrum of industry sectors, including pharmaceuticals and healthcare, hotels and leisure, insurance, and transport and logistics. Head of practice¬†Sue Dowman¬†‚Äėis very pragmatic and responsive, with a fair and unbiased viewpoint‚Äô. Dowman has supported APP Wholesale with the management of its trademark portfolio and advised ATP when it was faced with allegations of copyright infringement. Solicitors¬†Baljeet Kaur¬†and¬†Elizabeth de Cruz¬†support Dowman.

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