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Yorkshire and the Humber

Transport - ranked: tier 1


The transport practice at DLA Piper UK LLP is known predominantly for handling matters within the public transport sector, including rail and bus. The team acts for the Department of Transport on multiple projects, recently it has been instructed to advise upon procurement of the South Eastern Rail and East Anglia Rail franchises. It has also represented this client in relation contractual disputes arising from the Thameslink Rolling Stock Project. Robert Smith heads up the team and has particular experience representing local and central government, including Transport for Greater Manchester among other combined authorities. Sheffield-based Petra Billing continues to lead advice to Abellio East Anglia on all transactional matters and property litigation.  Other clients in the rail sector include HS2, Hitachi Rail Europe, and in the aviation sector the team is currently acting for National Air Traffic Services and British Airways plc. 

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Yorkshire and the Humber: Corporate and commercial

Corporate and commercial: Leeds, West Yorkshire, North Yorkshire
Corporate and commercial: Leeds, West Yorkshire, North Yorkshire - ranked: tier 1


DLA Piper UK LLP is ‘unquestionably a top-tier practice’ as ‘one of the best firms in the region’ with ‘exemplary response times, considerable industry insight and an absolutely top-notch team’. Andrew Davies and Matthew Duncombe lead the corporate and commercial practices respectively; Davies is experienced in the retail and aviation sectors, and Duncombe’s expertise encompasses the hospitality, leisure, retail and manufacturing sectors. Jonathan Procter leads the firm’s financial services advice, Stephen Atkinson is the key name for M&A advice for private equity clients and legal director Paul Routledge regularly handles cross-border transactions. Hospitality sector specialist Wendy Harrison and John Gallon, who handles capital markets transactions, are also names to note. Recent highlights include assisting the Wellcome Trust with its joint venture with Queensway and the creation of a new hotel brand, advising Brewdog on its £213m sale of a stake in the business to TSG Consumer Partners and acting for Nisa Retail on its acquisition by the Co-operative Group. Marriott, Yorkshire Water, Booths and Q Hotels are also clients.

Leading individuals

Jonathan Procter - DLA Piper UK LLP

Matthew Duncombe - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Corporate and commercial: Sheffield, South Yorkshire
Corporate and commercial: Sheffield, South Yorkshire - ranked: tier 1


According to one client, what sets DLA Piper UK LLP’s Sheffield team apart is ‘its ability to see the bigger commercial picture and set its legal advice in that real-world context’ thanks to ‘an exceptionally strong team of highly responsive and skilled individuals’. Richard May and Roger Gough lead the corporate and commercial teams respectively; May handles national and international M&A and Gough focuses on IT contract work. Clients also single out capital markets and M&A specialist Rob McKie, who is ‘unflappable, helpful and commercial in every possible way’; Catherine Simister, who has notable strength in the manufacturing and healthcare sectors; and recently promoted partners David Beech and Amanda Pilkington, who specialise in cross-border work and outsourcing issues respectively. Recent highlights include advising Newell Brands on the UK aspects of the $2bn sale of its tool business to Stanley Black & Decker, assisting JustGiving with its sale to Blackbaud, and acting for Axalta Coating Systems on its cross-border acquisition of the Plascoat group of companies including operating sites in the UK and Netherlands and subsidiaries in the US. Yu Group, Maintel Holdings and Playtech are also clients.

Leading individuals

Richard May - DLA Piper UK LLP

Roger Gough - DLA Piper UK LLP

Next generation lawyers

David Beech - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Corporate tax
Corporate tax - ranked: tier 2


Lynda Finan is the key name in DLA Piper UK LLP’s Leeds office and was recently joined by new practice head David Smith  and senior associate Richard Johnson, who were recruited from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP in 2018. Chartered tax adviser Finan specialises in equity incentives, share schemes and employment-related tax issues, Smith handles corporate and employment-related tax matters, and associate Sally Robertson is another key name to note; the team also works closely with Manchester-based David Thompson. Highlights included advising Clinigen Group on the share scheme elements of its acquisition of Quantum Pharma, assisting Proprium Real Estate Special Situations with the tax elements of its acquisition of Admiral Taverns, and handling Sytner Group’s acquisition of Car Shops. NCC Group, Renew Holdings and CVS Group are also clients.

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Yorkshire and the Humber: Crime, fraud and licensing

Licensing - ranked: tier 1


The licensing department at DLA Piper UK LLP is regularly instructed by clients including educational providers, national hotel chains and cinemas on both contentious and non-contentious matters. Former regulator Teresa Hitchcock heads up the practice which has the capabilities to both, deal with large portfolios of premises licences and also achieve successful outcomes in sensitive matters, avoiding reputational damage. Other key names to note include Charlotte Gibson for alcohol, regulated entertainment and gambling licensing issues and +Eddy Steele who has particular experience resolving disputes.

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Yorkshire and the Humber: Dispute resolution

Banking litigation
Banking litigation - ranked: tier 1


DLA Piper UK LLP’s ‘superb’ practice fields ‘first-class, London-quality lawyers’ who are ‘exceptionally friendly, strong commercially and hugely experienced’. Department head Adam Ibrahim has ‘an enormous amount of expertise that makes him highly dependable’; he handles financial product disputes, cybercrime and fraud issues, insolvency work and retail banking matters. Hugh Evans and Ben Johnson are also names to note; Evans has ‘great instincts’ and Johnson ‘consistently achieves excellent results’. Evans recently defended RBS in an issue relating to the alleged mis-selling of interest rate hedging products and Johnson acts for banks, payment service providers and asset-based lending clients. Other practitioners to receive praise from clients include legal director Sharon Duncan, who is ‘a friendly, client-facing lawyer’; legal director Chris Harvey, who is ‘extremely hardworking’; ‘highly knowledgeable’ senior associate Sohail Ali, and senior associate Claire Clayton-Stead, whose ‘hands-on approach makes her excellent with clients’. Aviva, Bank of Ireland, Barclays Bank, Clydesdale Bank and Standard Chartered Banks are clients.

Leading individuals

Hugh Evans - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Commercial litigation: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire
Commercial litigation: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire - ranked: tier 1


Noted for its ‘incredible industry insight’, DLA Piper UK LLP is ‘unquestionably a top-tier firm’; the disputes practice is ‘easily one of the best in the region but can also hold its own on a national level against the London firms’. David Young leads the practice and is ‘an outstanding lawyer who compliments great intellect with exceptional judgment and has the vision to tell you how to win a case strategically and the raw talent to ensure the win’. Young’s recent highlights include acting for roughly 4000 members of IBM’s final salary pension plan in a case concerning IBM’s decision to close its final salary scheme. Paul Stone is also a key name to note; he recently represented Merseytravel in a challenge brought by Bombardier Transportation to a procurement contract initially awarded to Stadler and acted for Birmingham City Council in a dispute relating to a PFI contract. BBC, British Airways, Heineken, Nisa Retail and Shire Oak Quarries are also clients. Simon Kenyon is the key contact for technology disputes and senior associate Kathryn Ford is ‘very bright and always goes the extra mile to get things done’.

Leading individuals

David Young - DLA Piper UK LLP

Next generation lawyers

Kathryn Ford - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Commercial litigation: Sheffield, South Yorkshire
Commercial litigation: Sheffield, South Yorkshire - ranked: tier 1


DLA Piper UK LLP is praised for its ‘excellent response times, pragmatic solution-oriented advice and incredible business acumen’, with notable expertise in telecoms litigation, cross-border disputes, competition law, construction disputes and finance litigation. Telecoms specialist Richard Norman leads the group; he recently defended The Coal Authority and Wentworth Woodhouse in a mining subsidence damage claim and represented Boots in a claim relating to the historic overcharging for water management services by Severn Trent Water. Arqiva, Atos, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Big Hand are also clients. Other noteworthy practitioners include senior associate Barney Connell, who is experienced in the financial services sector; IT litigator Ashley Mott, legal director Michael Wright, who specialises in mining and minerals issues; and senior associates Mick Lawlor and Harriet Farrant.

Leading individuals

Richard Norman - DLA Piper UK LLP

Next generation lawyers

Barney Connell - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Yorkshire and the Humber: Finance

Banking and finance
Banking and finance - ranked: tier 1


DLA Piper UK LLP is ‘a top-tier firm’ that is ‘very commercially aware and able to provide advice at a business level and not purely on technical legal points’.  Kirstie Allerton leads the practice and specialises in real estate finance work with notable expertise in the hotel, industrial and student sectors. Clients also praise the ‘incredibly knowledgeable’ Sarah Day and the ‘technically excellent’ Anna Robson, who are experienced in debt finance and asset-based lending; Day recently advised Nisa on its refinancing with Wells Fargo and HSBC, and assisted RBS, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Barclays, HSBC and Wells Fargo as funders with the provision of a debt facility to Speedy Hire. Project finance and legal director Laura Gordon worked with energy expert Natasha Luther-Jones to act for Mitsubishi UFG Financial Group on the financing of a windfarm project by Nanclach in Scotland. Aviva, Sun Capital, Henry Boot, Emerald Publishing and Town Centre Securities are also clients.

Leading individuals

Kirstie Allerton - DLA Piper UK LLP

Sarah Day - DLA Piper UK LLP

Next generation lawyers

Laura Gordon - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Insolvency and corporate recovery
Insolvency and corporate recovery - ranked: tier 1


DLA Piper UK LLP is noted for its ability to ‘keep on top of things and drive matters forward’ and for its ‘brilliant technical capabilities, commercial aptitude and excellent responsiveness’. Richard Obank and Duncan Mosley jointly lead the group from Leeds and Sheffield respectively; Obank is ‘an outstanding distressed M&A expert with great wisdom and judgment that allows him to manage the most demanding and difficult situations’ and Mosley ‘knows the market well’. Colin Ashford focuses on contentious restructuring and insolvency work, Mark Jackson is the UK head of the restructuring team and Barney Smedley handles debt restructurings. Recent highlights include advising Duff & Phelps on the administration of the BHS Group, acting for PwC in a claim brought by Premier Motor Auctions alleging wrongdoing and negligence, and assisting Miller Homes with the sale of the Homes Group to Bridgepoint and the planning for the solvent liquidation of various Miller Group companies.

Leading individuals

Richard Obank - DLA Piper UK LLP

Next generation lawyers

Barney Smedley - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Yorkshire and the Humber: Human resources

Employment: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire
Employment: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire - ranked: tier 1

DLA Piper

The employment practice at DLA Piper leverages its international offices in cross-border matters and represents globally-recognized brands, including Caffe Nero Group, New Balance and Stanley Black & Decker. Supporting its strong corporate department, the team advised John Menzies Plc on employment aspects of its acquisition of ASIG from BBA Aviation plc, including in relation to the application of TUPE. The team continues to illustrate its significant expertise in handling issues relating to the growing 'gig economy' and, led by practice head Jane Hannon, is currently acting for a national delivery company in disputes relating to the employment status of its workers. Following the previous successful defence of related employment tribunal claims, the practice is now representing the company in a class action supported by the GMB trade union. Legal director Louise Hendry – in addition to having considerable experience in equality and diversity matters – has expertise on data protection matters and was instructed by one of the top UK airlines to advise on the implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation in relation to HR data. Another key name to note is legal director Christopher Baker who deals with the full-spectrum of contentious and non-contentious employment advice and leverages his industry knowledge in acting for clients in the media, retail and financial services sectors. David Bradley left the team to head up Ramsdens' employment practice.

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Employment: Sheffield and South Yorkshire
Employment: Sheffield and South Yorkshire - ranked: tier 1


DLA Piper UK LLP leverages its office network across the UK and abroad to act for national and international clients on contentious issues, as well as ongoing and strategic advice and audits. The practice, headed by Clare Gregory, was instructed by a leading leisure and entertainment brand to advise on engagement of independent contractors, considering legal, tax and regulatory risks. The strong retail sector employment team, led by Gurpreet Duhra, acts for clients such as Mothercare, Puma and River Island. The department acted for Wilko Stores in relation to employment aspects of and relating to its procurement of transport services, including the termination of previous contracts and appointment of Wincanton. On the contentious front the team successfully represented Verizon in a claim for disability discrimination. In another work highlight, the department acted for a leading global manufacturer of packaging on providing strategic GDPR compliance across pan-Europe operations. Other key clients include Paddy Power, Dixons Carphone Warehouse and the University of Sheffield.

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Health and safety
Health and safety - ranked: tier 1


DLA Piper UK LLP's health and safety practice offers integrated contentious and non‑contentious representation and is adept at delivering general risk management and ongoing advice as well as defending clients in investigations and prosecutions. Sheffield-based Teresa Hitchcock heads up the national safety, health and environment practice and leverages her extensive experience as a senior environmental and health and safety regulator in local government in advising clients in both large and small businesses and in the public sector. In addition to having a strong national practice, the team is able to utilise its international office network to provide a global service. The team is currently representing Keller Group plc in producing a comprehensive health and safety guide that is compliant with local law across many jurisdictions. The team is also instructed by Natural Environment Research Council, Pfizer and Fenner plc. Legal director Ailish Oxenforth is a key name to note in the Sheffield office, and has acted in matters requiring complex advice as well as in high-profile investigations. Stuart Ponting departed to the practice to join Walker Morris LLP & Leeds.

Leading individuals

Teresa Hitchcock - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Pensions - ranked: tier 3


The pensions practice at DLA Piper UK LLP is now headed up Andrew McIlhinney (who was previously based at the firm's Liverpool office) following the departure of the former team to establish ARC Pensions Law. The practice regularly advises trustees, sponsoring employers and scheme providers on full spectrum of pensions matters. The group acted for the trustees of a Carbon Black Manufacturer's Occupational Pension Scheme on the buy-out of all benefits and additionally advised, post-closure, on trustee liability. In another work highlight, the team handled all pension issues arising from Link Group's purchase of Capita Asset Services. In Leeds, McIlhinney is joined by the 'very pragmatic and practical' Simon Evans, formerly at Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP, and associates Hannah Watson and  David Molyneux who joined from DWF and Squire Patton Boggs respectively. The practice is also bolstered by pensions litigator David Young.

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Yorkshire and the Humber: Insurance

Professional negligence: claimant
Professional negligence: claimant - ranked: tier 1


The 'excellent' practice at DLA Piper UK LLP has experience acting for claimants and defendants in professional negligence claims. The department is spread across the firm's Sheffield and Leeds offices and is jointly led by Hugh Evans - who has expertise in the banking sector - and head of the litigation and regulatory team +Adam Ibrahim. In a recent highlight, David Young led advice to Goodwood Estate Company and Goodwood Estate Pensions in claims against two of the companies' former law firms for alleged negligent advice. Other key names to note include legal directors Chris Harvey  and Sheffield-based Paul McNamee. Clients include the RBS group, Leeds Building Society, Bank of Ireland and GE Capital. The team has also represented high profile individuals.

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Yorkshire and the Humber: Projects, energy and natural resources (including PFI)

Energy - ranked: tier 1


Teresa Hitchcock and Natasha Luther-Jones jointly lead DLA Piper UK LLP’s department from Sheffield and Leeds respectively. Hitchcock is noted for her expertise in contaminated land, climate law and regeneration projects, and Luther-Jones is ‘a go-to name in the renewable energy space’; Luther-Jones’ recent work includes advising Nord on the financing of a wind farm project in Sweden, acting for Equitix on four separate acquisitions of solar assets including a portfolio of six solar sites from Anesco and six operating ground mounted solar installations from Primrose Solar, and assisting Falck Renewables with various greenfield wind power developments across Scandinavia. Other mandates included handling the acquisition of a grid connected short term operating response (STOR) development project in Doncaster and advising Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group on the financing of a wind farm in Scotland. Zilkha Biomass Energy, Tata Steel, Alcoa and Ineos are also clients. Andrew Batterton is the key name for energy developments, Ian Doig handles construction work and Stephen Atkinson regularly works on renewables projects.

Leading individuals

Natasha Luther-Jones - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Infrastructure - ranked: tier 1


Key names in DLA Piper UK LLP’s Leeds team includes Robert Smith, who focuses on the transport sector; Allison Page, who specialises in highways and street lighting projects; Natasha Luther-Jones, who leads the firm’s renewable energy group and Andrew Batterton, who heads the development and infrastructure planning teams. Ian Doig in Sheffield and legal director Ben Peecock are the main contacts for construction and engineering matters. The department covers infrastructure comprehensively covering projects, finance, litigation, regulatory advice, restructurings, competition work, planning, construction and environmental issues. Recent highlights include advising Merseytravel on the construction elements of its new depot facilities on the Merseyrail network, assisting Highways England with its procurement of the Lower Thames Crossing Project, and acting for Gazprom Energoholding on the design, construction and commissioning of a power plant and pipeline for the supply of LNG. The team also advised the Department for Transport on the development of the Southern Eastern rail franchise and is acting for Tyne and Wear Passenger Transport Executive on the MetroFutures project including the replacement of existing rolling stock.

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Yorkshire and the Humber: Public sector

Education - ranked: tier 2


The 'always helpful and knowledgeable' education practice at DLA Piper UK LLP is comprised of specialists based in both the Sheffield and Leeds offices, who 'understand the business and provide pragmatic solutions'. The Leeds-based Andrew Clarke heads the team alongside Richard Taylor, who splits his time between the Sheffield and Birmingham offices. The practice is adept at advising clients across further and higher education in addition to acting for the Department for Education and the London Grid for Learning. The team advised Aston University on reviewing and drafting standard terms for the licensing of its IP. The 'very experienced' Roger Gough has particular expertise advising higher education clients on corporate and commercial transactions.

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Local government
Local government - ranked: tier 2


DLA Piper UK LLP has expertise handling major projects relating to transport, regeneration, housing and waste for its local government clients, and private sector companies partnering with public sector bodies, on projects. The team spans across the firm's two Yorkshire offices and is jointly led by Sheffield-based property law expert Nigel Howard and the head of the projects group in Leeds, Robert Smith. The practice is advising Transport of Greater Manchester on a proposed bus franchise scheme including on procurement documents, regulatory issues and is dealing with the drafting of template franchise agreements. The team is also adept at handling contentious issues, and litigation partner Paul Stone and projects specialist Allison Page are instructed by Birmingham City Council in relation to a dispute, now before the Court of Appeal, relating to a £2bn 25 year PFI contract. Roger Gough is key name to note in Sheffield, particularly for grant funding and procurement issues.

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Yorkshire and the Humber: Real estate

Commercial property: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire
Commercial property: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire - ranked: tier 1


DLA Piper UK LLP’s advice covers regional, national and international mandates across transactional work and real estate investment issues with experience in the retail, financial services, manufacturing, transport and energy sectors. Highlights included advising Ocean Network Express (a new joint venture between NYK Group, K-Line and Mitsui OSK Lines) on the establishment of 49 new offices in multiple jurisdictions, acting for the Royal Bank of Scotland on its disposal of Premier Place and assisting Uber with all its real estate issues across the EMEA region. Tim Field heads the department, which includes renewable energy project specialist Andrew Clarke, Mark Lynch, who focuses on property portfolio work; and legal directors Ruth Williamson and Stacey Brook who handle asset management work and retail sector work respectively. Asda and JD Sports Fashion are also clients; Clarke is assisting the latter with land sales and with obtaining the funding for the extension of its European distribution centre in Rochdale. Valerie Mather retired.

Leading individuals

Tim Field - DLA Piper UK LLP

Next generation lawyers

Ruth Williamson - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Commercial property: Sheffield, South Yorkshire
Commercial property: Sheffield, South Yorkshire - ranked: tier 1


Nigel Howard leads the department at DLA Piper UK LLP, which handles real estate transactions at a local, national and international level. Howard is the key name for development work; he recently advised Rhodia on the demolition, remediation and sale of a former chemical works in Leeds. The team also includes student accommodation specialist Stephen Blacksell, recently promoted partner Mark Keeling and senior associate Marc Harvey. Blacksell’s recent work includes assisting S Harrison Developments with its £14m acquisition of a property in York and advising Harrison Street on its acquisition of a development site next to Exeter City Football Club; and Keeling recently acted for Haworth on the sale of land in London to London & Quadrant Housing Trust. Tata Steel, The Watkin Jones Group, Lloyds Pharmacy and Miller Homes are also clients. -Vikki McKay joined Proskauer Rose LLP's London office.

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Construction - ranked: tier 1


Under the leadership of ‘subject matter expert’ Ian Doig, DLA Piper UK LLP provides ‘perceptive and technically sound advice’ from ‘a team of responsive and well-resourced lawyers who have a commercial focus and an added ability to draw upon global expertise through the firm’s international network’. Doig focuses on non-contentious construction mandates; he recently advised Merseytravel on the construction of new depot facilities on the Merseyrail network, assisted British Airways with the construction of a new facility at Heathrow Airport for express shipments and pharmaceuticals, and acted for Gazprom Energoholding on the construction and commissioning of a power plant and pipeline for the supply of LNG in Serbia. Legal director Ben Peecock is also noted for his ‘clear, decisive and practical advice’; he led advice to Falck Renewables on the construction elements of two wind farms in Sweden comprising 31 wind turbines, and handled Henry Boot Development’s construction of a manufacturing park in the North East. Cadent Gas, Highways England, Yorkshire Water, Sellafield and Unilever are also clients.

Leading individuals

Ian Doig - DLA Piper UK LLP

Next generation lawyers

Ben Peecock - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Environment - ranked: tier 1


DLA Piper UK LLP ‘cannot be faulted’ and is ‘far and away the best’ for its ‘excellent response times and in-depth understanding of the industry’. Practice head Teresa Hitchcock is ‘a straight talker with an exceptional grasp of complex issues and an ability to connect with the client and its needs’; she recently advised the Keller Group on environmental issues and obligations in multiple jurisdictions. The team handles environmental litigation, prosecutions, compliance issues, approvals and assessments, waste disposal work, and matters involving the transportation of dangerous goods. Alastair Clough is the key name for contaminated land and waste management issues and allocating liability risk in transactions; he assisted Cufe Investments with the environmental elements on its sale of Metal and Waste Recycling to European Metal Recycling, and acted for Morgan Advanced Materials on the sale of its electro-ceramic business to CeramTec including site access issues and the negotiation of contractual liability risk allocation. Legal director Ailish Oxenforth is the main contact for Environment Agency (EA) enforcement issues. -Stuart Ponting joined Walker Morris LLP in 2017.

Leading individuals

Teresa Hitchcock - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Planning - ranked: tier 1


As ‘one of the leading firms in the field’, DLA Piper UK LLP is ‘highly professional, pragmatic and always provides appropriate and proportionate advice’. Andrew Batterton leads the department, which handles national and international projects with notable expertise in infrastructure projects, regenerations and energy sector issues. Batterton ‘has a good eye for what really matters to the clients and is very thorough and helpful in his approach’; his recent highlights include advising Highways England on its new highway and highway improvement schemes, acting for Sheffield City Council and Urbo Regeneration on the West Bar Square regeneration project, and assisting Liverpool City Council with the consents required for the dualling of the A565. VPower, National Grid Electricity Transmission, Nexus and Merlin Entertainments are also clients. Associate Claire Stoneman, who handles development and infrastructure matters, is also a name to note.

Leading individuals

Andrew Batterton - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Property litigation
Property litigation - ranked: tier 1


DLA Piper UK LLP’s ‘brilliant’ department is jointly led by Petra Billing in Sheffield and John Kittle and Matthew Lonergan in Leeds; Billing specialises in minerals litigation, Kittle handles commercial landlord and tenant matters and portfolio management work, and Lonergan is recognised for his dilapidation and possession claims experience. Billing’s recent mandates include representing Telereal Trillium in the Court of Appeal relating to issues surrounding a non-domestic rating decision regarding an empty commercial property, and successfully acting for Aggregate Industries in litigation regarding nuisance, trespass, injunctive relief and damages claims against two individuals who built a log cabin in a non-operational mine owned by the client. Kittle handles all property litigation for Heineken UK’s portfolio of public houses including issues arising from legislative changes, and Lonergan defended the Royal Bank of Scotland in claims for misrepresentation and breach of lease covenants. Legal director Michael Gaughan is recommended for retail work and senior associate Rob Shaw is another name to note.

Leading individuals

Petra Billing - DLA Piper UK LLP

Next generation lawyers

Rob Shaw - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Yorkshire and the Humber: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

IT and telecoms
IT and telecoms - ranked: tier 1


Key names in DLA Piper UK LLP’s ‘technically brilliant’ practice include Mark Vipan, who heads the Leeds intellectual property and technology group; Roger Gough, who leads the Sheffield non-contentious team; Simon Kenyon, who is head of the technology disputes practice; and Sheffield-based litigation and regulatory head Richard Norman. In a recent highlight, Vipan advised Haven Power on a major IT transformation including drafting and negotiating supplier contracts; he also assisted Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust with software licensing agreements, the procurement of a service desk provision and handled its proposed IT services collaboration with Leeds City Council. Andrew Dyson is head of the cyber and data privacy practice while recently promoted partner Amanda Pilkington is the key name for outsourcing work; Dyson recently advised Aviva on its GDPR programme and Pilkington acted for the Department for Work and Pensions on the supply contracts for its IT, telephone and network service infrastructure. Senior associate James Watson is also a key contact.

Leading individuals

Mark Vipan - DLA Piper UK LLP

Next generation lawyers

James Watson - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 1


As ‘a firm that sits very comfortably in the top tier’, DLA Piper UK LLP has ‘developed and maintained a real strength in IP litigation’ alongside its expertise in anti-counterfeiting, brand launches and IP licensing. Leigh Martin and Richard Taylor head the team from Leeds and Sheffield respectively; Martin recently rejoined the firm from Clarion and is ‘a superb litigator who works swiftly and tirelessly for his clients’, and Taylor is ‘highly knowledgeable and commercial in his approach’. Recent highlights for the practice include assisting Heineken with its trade mark portfolio, advising the University of Sheffield on its global trade mark portfolio and acting for Ardagh Group on trade mark issues including pre-filing and clearance advice, filings and prosecutions. GE Healthcare, Spin Master, British Airways, the Coal Authority and Tata Steel are also clients. Legal director Rebecca Piper regularly handles contentious IP work, trade mark matters and transactional-related IP issues; and senior associate Jim McDonnell has ‘excellent legal knowledge’. Chris Tulley retired.

Leading individuals

Richard Taylor - DLA Piper UK LLP

Next generation lawyers

Rebecca Piper - DLA Piper UK LLP

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Legal Developments by:
DLA Piper LLP (US)

  • Sentencing guidelines for corporate manslaughter

    In February 2010 the Sentencing Guidelines Council (the SGC) issued definitive guidelines to courts on imposing appropriate sentences for corporate manslaughter and health and safety offences causing death. The SGC states that fines imposed on companies found guilty of corporate manslaughter should not fall below £500,000, while fines in respect of health and safety offences that are a significant cause of death should be at least £100,000. Crucially, the SGC declined to provide for a fixed link between the imposed fine and the turnover or profitability of the offending company.

    - DLA Piper UK LLP

Legal Developments in the UK

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