The Legal 500

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  • Wales: Overview >

Wales: Corporate and commercial

Within Corporate and commercial: Cardiff and South Wales, Acuity Legal Limited is a second tier firm,

Acuity Legal Limited is the go-to niche practice in Wales. Stephen Berry receives consistently positive client feedback (he is ‘commercial’, and a ‘good negotiator’), and has built up a loyal client base. Standout deals in 2012 included a £15.5m fundraising exercise for IQE, led by the ‘technically strongRachelle Sellek, and repeat transactional instructions from Capita and Eco2.

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Wales: Dispute resolution

Within Commercial litigation, Acuity Legal Limited is a third tier firm,

Lyndon Richards handles litigation at Acuity Legal Limited, often with a property angle, and is currently advising on a number of property-related disputes for Battersea Place LLP. John Morris is also recommended.

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Within Debt recovery, Acuity Legal Limited is a third tier firm,

John Morris is recommended at Acuity Legal Limited.

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Wales: Finance

Within Banking and finance, Acuity Legal Limited is a third tier firm,

Beverley Jones heads the banking team at Acuity Legal Limited, which advises lenders such as Julian Hodge and the Principality, and borrowers. It punches above its weight in terms of complexity and value of funding arrangements.

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Within Insolvency and corporate recovery, tier 4

At Acuity Legal Limited, Rachelle Sellek and Stephen Berry advise on large corporate restructurings. John Morris advises numerous IPs, including Begbies Traynor.

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Wales: Human resources

Within Employment: Cardiff, tier 4

James Moss at Acuity Legal Limited is recommended, particularly for transactional support and sports contracts.

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Wales: Insurance

Within Professional negligence, Acuity Legal Limited is a third tier firm,

Lyndon Richards is recommended at Acuity Legal Limited.

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Wales: Overview

Wales: Private client

Within Charities and not-for-profit, Acuity Legal Limited is a second tier firm,

Acuity Legal Limited advises charities on a range of commercial issues. Clients include sports and cultural bodies, housing providers, and business innovation projects.

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Wales: Projects, energy and natural resources

Within Project finance and PFI, Acuity Legal Limited is a third tier firm,

Deryn Rees heads the team at Acuity Legal Limited, which has a good understanding of the energy sector. Clients include West Sussex County Council, Eco2, and Dulas.

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Wales: Public sector

Within Public sector , Acuity Legal Limited is a second tier firm,

Deryn Rees at Acuity Legal Limited is recognised nationally for her expertise in the waste sector, advising on long-term projects and procurement. She advises West Sussex County Council across the spectrum of legal issues, including healthcare and education.

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Wales: Real estate

Within Commercial property: Cardiff, Acuity Legal Limited is a second tier firm,

Jonathan Geen at Acuity Legal Limited remains the ‘go-to’ partner for significant property deals in South Wales, punching well above his weight in a competitive market. Geen takes the lead on developments such as the £500m Cardiff Waterfront project, advising Greenbank Partnerships.

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Within Construction, Acuity Legal Limited is a second tier firm,

Lyndon Richards at Acuity Legal Limited has seen his practice move to a more equal balance of contentious and non-contentious contractual work, the increase in the latter area being largely on the back of the firm’s niche commercial property practice.

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Within Planning and environment, Acuity Legal Limited is a third tier firm,

Steve Morris is the name to note at Acuity Legal Limited.

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Within Property litigation, tier 5

Lyndon Richards is recommended at Acuity Legal Limited.

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Wales: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Within Intellectual property, Acuity Legal Limited is a second tier firm,

Rachelle Sellek at Acuity Legal Limited advises on commercial agreements relating to IP rights. Clients include Capita Group and its subsidiaries, and various sports professionals.

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Within IT and telecoms, Acuity Legal Limited is a second tier firm,

Rachelle Sellek at Acuity Legal Limited advises technology businesses such as AIM-listed IQE plc on M&A transactions. The firm is ‘very good’ in terms of level of knowledge and value for money.

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Within Sport, Acuity Legal Limited is a second tier firm,

Acuity Legal Limited’s team is headed up by Christian Farrow, a strong commercial solicitor who ‘consistently delivers’. Clients include The Endgame Group, and the Welsh Rugby Players Association.

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Legal Developments in the UK

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • Home Office announces extension of support service for SMEs

    An online support service for small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) which need to recruit skilled overseas workers has been extended until 28 February 2014. The pilot was launched by UK Visas & Immigration (UKVI) in partnership with the Greater London Authority (GLA) and provides a step by step guide to sponsoring an overseas worker. This service is available via the GLA website.
  • Penningtons Manches' immigration team considers new changes to the Tier 4 Sponsor Guidance

    The Home Office has recently published new Tier 4 Sponsor Guidance, version 12/13. This guidance is to be used by all prospective and existing Tier 4 sponsors from 11 December 2013.
  • Finding the 
right words

    In the recent case of Newbury v Sun Microsystems [2013], the defendant argued that an offer to settle proceedings was ‘in principle' only and that a binding contract could not be formed until further terms had been agreed and a formal contract had been signed. It supported this argument by referring to a statement, in the offer letter, that the settlement was to be ‘recorded in a suitably worded agreement'. 

  • Behind the corporate veil: is that all there is?

    That companies have an existence entirely separate to that of their shareholders and directors is a foundational principle of English law and commerce.

  • Playing fair with penalty clauses

    It is often difficult to predict what will be recoverable as damages for breach of contract. To provide some certainty, parties will often seek to agree the sum that will be payable in the event of specified breaches. 

  • Restoring environmental damage: putting a price on ecosystem services

    On 7 August 2009 a 40-inch pipeline ruptured, spilling 5,400 cubic metres of crude oil into the soil and groundwater of La Crau nature reserve in southern France, a habitat protected under French and European law. The operator had to excavate and replace 60,000 tons of soil, install 70 wells to pump and treat groundwater and 25 pumps to skim oil from surface water, at a cost in the region of €50m. However, this was just the primary remediation (that is, restoring the site to the state it would have been if the damage had not occurred). The operator was also required to compensate for the damage to the habitats and the loss of the ecosystem services that would otherwise have been provided by La Crau nature reserve. Measures included purchasing land outside of the nature reserve and contributing to its management for a period of 30 years (over €1m), monitoring the water table for 20 years (over €500,000), monitoring fauna over three years (€150,000) and rehabilitation in accordance with best available ecological techniques (nearly €2m). Overall, the compensatory restoration (to compensate for the amount of time that the ecosystem was impacted) and complimentary restoration (to compensate for elements of the ecosystem that had been permanently lost) came to more than €6.5m. 

  • The role of arbitrators in EU antitrust law

    In May 2014, it will be ten years since Regulation No 1/2003 entered into force. When the legislator of the European Union adopted this Regulation on 16 December 2002, its main objective was to decentralise the enforcement of the two main provisions of EU antitrust law, Articles 81 and 82 of the Treaty establishing the European Community (now Articles 101 and 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU)). Where do the arbitrators fit in this picture?

  • New Immigration Bill, October 2013: cause for concern or appeasing public sentiment?

    The year 2013 has seen a string of reforms to the immigration system by the current coalition government. On 10 October, the government published a Bill aimed at continuing its drive to reduce net migration figures. 

  • New Schengen EU Regulations: impact on short-stay visa visitors

    The publication on 26 June 2013 of the European Union Regulation EU 610/2013 modified the incumbent Regulation EU 562/2006 in relation to third country nationals (ie non-EU citizens) and those travelling on a short-stay visitor visa, as well as those who do not require a visa to enter the Schengen area, Romania, Croatia and Bulgaria. Exceptions include EU and EEA nationals travelling to other EU/EEA states within the Schengen area together with foreign nationals holding either long-stay or residence permits for their destination Schengen countries.

  • New revised guidelines for administrators in pre-pack sales

    Pre-pack sales by administrators are now used frequently enough for most people in business to be aware of them and many have come across them in their business lives. A small amount of controversy still attaches to pre-packs, but it is probably right to say that they are now an accepted part of the UK business scene as a useful means of rescuing a business in difficulty and preserving some or all of the jobs connected with the business.
    - Druces