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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In the United Kingdon, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for eight years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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United Kingdom > London > Corporate and commercial > Financial services > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



Index of tables

  1. Financial services (non-contentious/regulatory)
  2. Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers
  5. Financial services (contentious)
  6. Leading individuals
  7. Next generation lawyers

Next generation lawyers

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Next generation lawyers

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Who Represents Who

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Able to leverage its huge international network, Clifford Chance LLP’s has the β€˜breadth and depth of technical knowledge’ to handle a tremendous volume of strategically important regulatory issues for a broad range of clients including banks, infrastructure providers and trade associations. The team has also developed numerous internet-based tools to assist clients navigate the vast range of regulatory issues they face, including "The Financial Markets Toolkit", which provides clients with easy online access to key legislation and know-how developed by the firm across a range of key regulatory topics. Active for a plethora of EU and non-EU financial institutions on the implications of Brexit, the team’s work has included developing business impact analyses and developing legal and regulatory location comparisons for operations across the EU countries. β€˜Rising star’ Caroline Meinertz provides β€˜solutions-oriented and pragmatic advice’ and has had a key role in much of this Brexit-related advice. Simon Crown has provided the regulatory input on several large financial services-related transactions including Cinven and CVC Capital Partners’ acquisition of leading consumer finance provider NewDay from Varde Partners. Team head Christopher Bates, Simon Gleeson, Monica Sah and Tim Plews are also recommended on the non-contentious front. The firm’s β€˜market-leading’ contentious team has been at the forefront of the most significant domestic and multi-jurisdictional regulatory investigations in the industry, but also on occasion on behalf top-level executives and as a β€˜result the practice ends up in the Upper Tribunal and gains experience that others do not get’. The β€˜excellent’ Carlos Conceicao is β€˜very well respected in the City with a great variety of clients’ and provides additional credibility with the regulator having himself formerly served as head of the FSA’s wholesale group in enforcement. β€˜The very able’ Kelwin Nicholls is β€˜extremely strong on high-profile cases’ which have recently included rate-setting misconduct on behalf of a major bank and market conduct issues on behalf of several commodities firms. The β€˜massively experienced’ Simon Davis is β€˜very well-thought of in the market’ and is a key member of the team that also includes Dorian Drew, Roger Best, Michael Lyons and Zoe Osborne.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP β€˜oozes class’ and represents an eclectic mix of clients in the financial services industry including investment banks, market infrastructure entities and asset management firms across a range of advisory, transactional, investigative and enforcement matters. The team has recently been particularly active on transactional work within the sector, and as well as advising London Stock Exchange (LSE) on its ultimately aborted merger with Deutsche Borse, also acted for it on its acquisition of US financial data business, Mergent. Michael Raffan provided the regulatory input on both the aforementioned matters and is the relationship partner for a number of high-profile clients of the group including Bank of England - which he recently advised on the structure and terms of the Term Funding and Corporate Bond Schemes put in place as part of the Bank of England’s actions in the immediate aftermath of the EU referendum. James Smethurst led on the LSE’s failed merger with Deutsche Borse and in addition to handling transactional mandates has also been involved in many discrete advisory matters including advising clients on Brexit implications and contingency planning. David Rouch is particularly active in the asset management space and is a key member of the team that also includes Mark Kalderon - who is noted for his regulatory expertise on behalf of commercial and investment banks. On the contentious front, the firm excels in representing clients that are the subject of multi-jurisdictional regulatory investigations (often also involving parallel private litigation) and this has been most starkly realised by the firm’s involvement in numerous market manipulation mandates. Simon Orton, David Scott, Andrew Hart, Ian Taylor and Piers Reynolds are recommended.

Praised for its β€˜excellent industry knowledge’, Linklaters LLP’s integrated ten-partner practice provides a β€˜first-class service’ to investment banks, investment managers and infrastructure providers across the spectrum of contentious and non-contentious matters affecting their businesses. At the forefront of prudential regulation, the firm is a β€˜clear leader’ on ring-fencing matters and continues to be the lead/strategic adviser to two UK clearing banks as they seek to implement this separation of their retail and investment/trading activities As well as being heavily involved in providing strategic advice on other key regulatory issues, including Brexit and MiFID II, the firm has had a key role advising numerous retail and investment banks on ensuring implementation of the recently enacted Senior Managers and Certification Regime. Formerly in-house at a major investment bank, Harry Eddis has excellent insight into the industry and has been active across a wide variety of regulatory issues including those impacting on the clearing sector and Fintech. Eddis recently helped establish LMEprecious, an innovative new suite of exchange-traded, loco London precious metals products. Michael Kent is β€˜very strong on regulatory matters’ and is an experienced member of the team that also includes Peter Bevan (who has developed a strong reputation for advising on MiFID II issues). The β€˜outstanding’ Nikunj Kiri, Martyn Hopper and Christa Band are also recommended. Clients include Citi, UBS, Lloyds, RBS and Aviva. Carl Fernandes joined Latham & Watkins. Sarah Parkhouse and Nadia Swann have left the firm.

Allen & Overy LLP is β€˜absolutely outstanding’ at representing clients throughout the continuum of contentious issues, from internal investigations through to enforcement actions (where it is β€˜able to deliver its outstanding banking and bank regulatory expertise, through contentious lawyers working seamlessly with the firm’s subject matter experts) and any private litigation flowing out of that. Calum Burnett provides a β€˜superb service’ to clients subject to complex domestic and cross-border regulatory investigations and enforcement proceedings. Effectively able to combine commercial litigation expertise with contentious regulatory skills, Mahmood Lone has handled numerous market manipulation matters including his recent work alongside the β€˜very impressive’ Tim House, in relation to the defence of a bank in a global FX investigation. Arnondo Chakrabarti has vast experience across both contentious regulatory matters and corporate crime, frequently in the context of a cross-border scenario. On the non-contentious front, recently promoted partner Kate Sumpter β€˜has an excellent understanding of the regulatory landscape in Europe for both buy and sell side clients’, and continues to advise HSBC on the ring-fencing of its retail and investment banking operations. Etay Katz has a strong reputation in the industry and as well as acting for individual financial institutions, is also frequently called upon to advise industry and trade bodies on regulatory issues of concern. In addition to providing regulatory advice to The Systemic Risk Council, Katz is also acting for Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) on its ongoing work on the European Banking Authority (EBA) consultation regarding an alternative prudential regulation regime for investment firms. Damian Carolan has a focus on derivatives and securities regulation and the development of new markets and clearing settlement systems; he recently advised London Clearing House on a significant new product development, Swap Agent, for the delivery of centralised infrastructure for uncleared "Over the counter" (OTC) derivatives business. The firm’s non-contentious capability was also boosted in March 2017 by the arrival of Nick Bradbury from Herbert Smith Freehills LLP.

Now led on the non-contentious front by James Perry, following the departure of Rob Moulton to Latham & Watkins in June 2016, Ashurst provides a β€˜very strong service’ to a broad range of clients including banks, trading platforms, funds and clearing houses. Perry recently provided guidance on the implications of the Brexit vote to two major financial institutions in the immediate aftermath of the referendum result. Praised for his β€˜up-to-date knowledge of rules and regulations’, Jake Green β€˜really knows his stuff’ and provides β€˜pragmatic and concise advice’ across a range of issues including the regulation of online trading where he recently advised Saxo Bank on the regulatory issues associated with its new robo-self divested platform. Senior associate Tim Cant has developed a strong reputation for MiFID-related advice and was recently a key member of the team that advised numerous buy and sell-side clients on issues related to the implementation of MiFIDII. Edward Sparrow spearheads the firm’s contentious offering and has overseen a team that has been busy across a broad variety of contentious regulatory work and litigation including representing financial institutions in the defence of accusations of market abuse, whistleblowing issues and conflict of interest, among other regulatory sensitive issues. Formerly head of litigation for EMEA at UBS, David Capps has an excellent perspective of the market and in addition to representing financial services clients in enforcement actions/investigations, is also well-versed in handling internal investigations and implementing risk management procedures. Tom Connor is also recommended across a range of financial services contentious matters including derivatives and structured product disputes, wealth management claims and general banking litigation.

The β€˜exceptional’ team at Hogan Lovells International LLP provides β€˜business friendly advice’ to retail and investment banks, asset managers and infrastructure providers. The firm is praised for its β€˜engaging and flexible approach’ which has ensured that it has effectively adapted to changes in the market in recent years and aligned itself at the forefront of areas of growth including Fintech. In this regard, β€˜very sharp’ team head Rachel Kent has worked alongside government backed organisation Innovate Finance on the Regulatory Accelerator tool for Fintech companies designed to assist them understand and navigate their way through the FCA’s regulatory regime. Kent has also been at the heart of the firm’s involvement in the preparation of a high-profile report looking at the third country regimes and other alternatives EU passporting in light of the UK’s exit from the EU. Michael Thomas is also recommended, in particular for his market infrastructure expertise. Jon Holland leads the team on the contentious front that is praised for its β€˜breadth and depth’ including involvement in some significant market manipulation cases over recent years. Other recommended contentious partners include the β€˜thoughtful and considered’ Louise Lamb, for consumer finance matters; the β€˜incredibly experienced, tactical and strategic’ Neil Mirchandani; the β€˜very sharp and client-focused’ Andrea Monks, who is regularly engaged in EU and US-related regulatory investigations; the β€˜excellent’ Philip Parish; and the β€˜incredibly hardworking’ Whiston Bristow.

Norton Rose Fulbright provides a β€˜prompt and knowledgeable’ service to wholesale and retail financial services clients from the banking, markets infrastructure and asset management sectors. MiFID II remains an area of particular activity for the team, as highlighted by Hannah Meakin’s continued representation of CME Group on its implementation of the directive, and Jonathan Herbst’s work for FIA European Principal Traders Association (a forum for firms trading their own capital) on the implications of MiFID II in relation to high frequency trading (HFT) entities and market makers. Praised for his β€˜forward thinking and ability to listen’, Herbst heads up a four-partner non-contentious offering that also includes Peter Snowdon and Imogen Garner, who leads the buy-side regulatory practice. The firm’s seven-partner contentious team has an β€˜excellent reputation’ on behalf of institutions and senior management figures across the panoply of issues affecting the sector, including market manipulation matters, and investigations regarding the Contracts for Difference (CFD) market. The team also includes numerous former regulators in its ranks, affording it strong credibility before the FCA and a strong understanding of its approach. Dual UK and US-qualified partner Lista Cannon is well-versed in handling multi-jurisdictional regulatory investigations and in a case which involves SEC, DOJ and FCA investigations is representing a former senior executive against criminal and civil allegations arising out of multibillion-dollar losses at the Chief Investment Office of JPMorgan. Katie Stephen is also recommended. Chris Warren-Smith joined Morgan, Lewis & Bockius UK LLP and Elisabeth Bremner joined CMS.

Shearman & Sterling LLP’s two-partner team is regularly engaged in high-level issues of strategic importance for a range of financial services clients, where they benefit from a co-ordinated international approach on multi-jurisdictional matters. Praised for his β€˜client- focused approach’, Barney Reynolds has been at the forefront of Brexit thought leadership and recently penned a widely read report - "A Blueprint for Brexit" - detailing two viable models for leaving the EU. Reynolds is also noted for his β€˜leading reputation on market infrastructure matters’ and continues to represent Abu Dhabi Global Market, the new international financial centre in the UAE, including revising the Financial Services and Markets Regulations and Rulebooks to ensure compliance with the Basel III capital requirements. The β€˜solutions-oriented’ Thomas Donegan provides an β€˜excellent analysis of complex matters relating to EU and UK financial regulatory issues’. As well as discrete regulatory advisory work, Donegan also provides the regulatory overlay on financial services M&A including his recent work for SociΓ©tΓ© GΓ©nΓ©rale on its €251m acquisition of Kleinwort Benson from the Oddo Group. On the contentious front, Jo Rickard handles financial services litigation as part of her broad commercial litigation offering.

Benefiting from β€˜strength in depth’, Simmons & Simmons handles a variety of work for its core base of clients in the asset management sector, in addition to a significant roster of sell-side institutions. In addition to receiving direct instructions on MiFID II implementation, clients also benefit from the firm’s MiFID II Manager, a subscription-based tool with a focus on practical implication issues as opposed to merely providing the law. Charlotte Stalin established the MiFID II Manager tool and is noted for her β€˜excellence in the area’. Darren Fox provides market-leading regulatory advice, often at a pan-European level, to hedge funds and asset managers. Jonathan Melrose provides regulatory advice across the non-contentious regulatory aspects of commodities, futures and metal derivatives trading. The β€˜very client-focused’ Penny Miller is also recommended, and the arrival of Rosali Pretorius in February 2017 from Dentons, enhances the firm’s already strong commodities and derivatives regulatory offering. Formerly at the FSA, contentious team head Richard Sims has an excellent perspective of FCA procedures and is frequently involved in the highest-profile investigations handled by the firm on behalf of both institutions and senior executives. Emma Sutcliffe has also recently completed a one year secondment at the FCA and is well regarded for her work on behalf of UK and foreign investment and retail banks, often in the context of a multi-jurisdictional investigation. The β€˜pragmatic and commercial’ Robert Turner is a β€˜trusted pair of hands’ on complex banking litigation as well as regulatory contentious regulatory matters. Stephen Gentle is β€˜at ease advising both corporates and individuals’ and is able to provide a rounded and comprehensive service to clients by dint of his parallel experience in criminal and white-collar matter, particularly in matters of fraud, insider dealing and market misconduct.

Benefiting from an β€˜excellent depth of content knowledge’, Slaughter and May is well-placed to represent a broad ranging array of financial services clients including advising non-regulated businesses on the impact of financial services regulation. The team has provided the regulatory input on the sell-side of numerous financial services M&A transactions; Ben Kingsley provided the regulatory advice to VΓ€rde Partners on the sale of leading consumer finance provider, NewDay, to Cinven and CVC Capital Partners. Kingsley also has a burgeoning reputation in the fast moving Fintech space. β€˜Exceptionally knowledgeable’ team head Jan Putnis is praised for his β€˜ability to think through and round complex scenarios’, and alongside newly promoted partner Nick Bonsall, has been representing two UK banks on their structural reform programme including advice on ring fencing and recovery and resolution planning. On the contentious front, Ewan Brown remains active in relation to market manipulation matters and as well as representing JPMorgan in FX regulatory and government investigations, is also a key partner involved in the firm’s work for Deutsche Bank in its LIBOR regulatory investigations. Praised for his ability to β€˜add value’ by virtue of his willingness to β€˜explore all relevant different angles’, Jonathan Clark recently secured a notable success at both first instance and on appeal for Banco Santander Totta in persuading the courts to use English law to govern the dispute regarding interest rate swap litigation. Deborah Finkler is also recommended.

Best known for its β€˜preeminent reputation’ in the asset management and funds space, Travers Smith LLP provides an β€˜excellent service’ across the panoply of issues affecting the sector including matters relating to MiFID II, AIFMD and the EU Market Abuse Regulation. Phil Bartram advised CVC on the UK regulatory aspects of its global fundraise for its seventh flagship fund. Tim Lewis provides β€˜well thought out advice’ to private equity and debt fund managers which is mindful of both UK and EU regulations; his reputation was recently underscored by his recent appointment as the Chair of the British Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (BVCA) Regulatory Committee. Mark Evans has a particular strength advising on clearing and settlement systems and recently advised CLS Bank on the development and implementation of a new service for the settlement of FX option trades and other FX contracts cleared by so-called "CCPs". Jane Tuckley is also recommended. Robert Fell has β€˜excellent client handling skills’ and excels at handling investigations involving senior executives and traders within financial institutions. The β€˜meticulous’ Toby Robinson has an β€˜astonishing eye for detail’ and excels at advising clients facing enforcement action brought by the FCA. Caroline Edwards, Huw Jenkin and Stephen Paget-Brown are also recommended at a partner level, and amongst the firm’s β€˜particularly deep bench of associates’, Stephanie Lee is β€˜clearly a star of the future who shows wisdom beyond her years’.

Praised for its β€˜fantastic business acumen and industry knowledge’, particularly in the retail sector, Addleshaw Goddard has excellent relationships with UK clearing banks (Lloyds), building societies (Yorkshire Building Society) and challenger banks (One Savings Bank). Amanda Hulme has a β€˜deep knowledge of consumer credit law and Fintech issues’; she recently acted for a major UK high street bank on the implementation of the Payment Account Regulations 2015. The β€˜very knowledgeable’ Brian McDonnell covers regulation impacting on the retail and wholesale markets and recently provided highly important and strategic advice to Virtual Auction constituted an organised trading facility under MiFID II. Other recommended practitioners include β€˜pragmatic, thorough and approachable’ Leeds-based Rosanna Bryant, who specialises in mortgage and payment services regulation; the β€˜very analytical’ Ben Koehne, who has β€˜great experience in the building society sector’; and Adam Bennett, who is β€˜the pre-eminent lawyer to go to for anything relating to building societies and has unrivalled contacts in the sector’. On the contentious side, Chris Brennan β€˜uses ex-regulatory experience effectively’, is recognised as a β€˜fighter when he needs to be’, and someone who β€˜has a deep-rooted understanding of the technical side of the regulations but is also able to use his experience to more accurately predict how the regulator might react to a particular point or strategy’. Nichola Peters’ β€˜experience of fraud investigations means she is extremely well placed to deal with regulatory and criminal cross-over issues’.

Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP contentious and non-contentious teams provide an integrated offering to clients, including banks, insurers and funds which require highly informed advice on the whole range of regulations and their options in response. Described by one client as β€˜one of the best financial services litigators around’, team head Nathan Willmott provides β€˜tactically excellent, commercial and responsive’ advice and has been heavily involved in the recent market manipulation benchmark cases (LIBOR and FX), as well as the more recent sovereign, supranational and agency (SSA) bond trading manipulation. The β€˜very responsive, commercial and personable’ Andrew Tuson has a β€˜great depth of legal knowledge’. Sidney Myers and dual UK/US qualified solicitor/advocate Aaron Stephens are also recommended. On the non-contentious front, Matthew Baker advises banks on fund managers across a range of UK/EU regulations including MiFID II and AIFMD. Formerly a secondee at the FSA’s enforcement division, Polly James is well-placed to prepare senior managers for regulatory approval interviews and Section 166 Skilled Person reviews. Clients include AIG, Aviva, Investec and AXA.

CMS’ financial services team displays β€˜great industry knowledge’ and provides β€˜highly commercial’ contentious and non-contentious advice to retail and wholesale banking clients. Benefiting from an β€˜unfathomable depth of knowledge’, Simon Morris β€˜always puts forth the most accurate position’ and is particularly strong in the retail insurance market. Praised for her β€˜cool and considered approach’, as well as her β€˜willingness to take on board comments and points from the client’, Alison McHaffie has vast experience advising financial services entities that are subject to regulatory investigations involving retail mis-selling, conflicts of interest and market abuse. The β€˜client focused and commercial’ Bill McCaffrey has a β€˜detailed knowledge’ of regulatory matters, particularly as they relate to consumer credit. Maxine Cupitt is also recommended. For non-contentious matters, the β€˜client friendly’ Ash Saluja is β€˜extremely knowledgeable and practical’ on the regulatory issues impacting a broad spectrum of financial services entities including banks, broker-dealers, funds and insurers. The β€˜technically excellent’ associate James Dickie is a β€˜rising star’ who is β€˜extremely practical even in the most stressful situations’.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP provides β€˜responsive and proactive advice’ across a wide range of regulatory matters impacting retail and wholesale clients in the financial services industry. β€˜Particularly strong in the alternative investment funds market’, the team has been helping them navigate the increasingly treacherous regulatory terrain including on compliance with MiFID II and regulatory capital requirements. As well as continuing to advise TSB on the regulatory issues associated with its spin-out from Lloyds Banking Group, team head Clive Cunningham also recently provided the regulatory input on Man Group’s $232m acquisition of Aalto Invest. Andrew Procter is recognised as a β€˜good lawyer to have on your side’ and was recently a key part of a multi-disciplinary team which assisted on the establishment of Clear Bank, the first new clearing bank to enter the market in 250 years. The β€˜approachable and diligent’ Karen Anderson and β€˜commercial and responsive’ Mark Staley are also recommended. In a combined effort with lawyers from within the competition group, Jenny Stainsby, Hywel Jenkins and Daniel Hudson continue to represent a leading global investment bank and an international financing group on the global reviews into alleged manipulation in the FX market. Other clients include BNP Paribas, Marathon Asset Management, Santander and UBS.

β€˜Up to speed on changes occurring in the market’, Macfarlanes LLP provides β€˜prompt and reliable advice’, in particular on regulatory matters impacting clients in the funds and asset management space. The β€˜pragmatic and business-oriented’ Michelle Kirschner is noted for funds-related regulatory expertise and recently advised Partners Group on the establishment of its first regulated fund. In a matter which attracted particularly heightened regulatory scrutiny given the target’s designation by HM Treasury as a systemically important institution, the β€˜very skilful’ Paul Ellison recently provided the regulatory input for Visa on its €21.2bn acquisition of Visa Europe. Dan Lavender and Matt McCahearty are the primary contacts for financial services contentious matters. Praised for their β€˜excellent technical abilities and commerciality’, Lavender and McCahearty are representing ICAP on all aspects of the multi-jurisdictional investigations by civil and criminal agencies into Yen LIBOR. Barry Donnelly has significant experience defending financial institutions subject to regulatory investigations; he continues to act for The British Bankers' Association (BBA) and BBA LIBOR throughout the Trans-Atlantic investigations, criminal prosecutions and civil proceedings in relation to the manipulation of the BBA LIBOR benchmark. The firm was weakened somewhat on the non-contentious front by the departure in December 2016 of David Berman to Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP.

Reed Smith LLP's practice was substantially enhanced in in January 2017 with the arrival of King Wood & Malleson’s non-contentious financial services regulatory team. One of the new arrivals, David Calligan β€˜brings very wide experience of the regulatory scene’ and has particular expertise on CFD and FX trading-related regulator issues. Tamasin Little is recommended for her AIFMD expertise and continues to act for leading global private equity fund of fund managers HarbourVest Partners on all regulatory aspects of the launch of each of its AIFMD compliant EEA funds. Although she is active across the spectrum of financial services regulatory issues including on behalf of banks, brokers and fund managers, Jacqui Hatfield is particularly noted for her Fintech expertise. Chris Borg and Brett Hillis are well known for their commodity derivatives regulatory expertise, and counsel Joanna Williams has an β€˜excellent capacity to boil down complicated regulate into an intelligible form’. The arrival in May 2016 of Douglas Cherry from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP enhanced the firm’s contentious offering, particularly in light of his strong reputation defending clients in FCA investigations and enforcement matters. The β€˜excellent’ Charles Hewetson and Robert Falkner are also recommended. Clients include Capital One, ANZ Bank and Bank of New York Mellon.

Sidley Austin LLP’s four-partner team provides β€˜practical and pragmatic advice’ to funds, banks and market infrastructure providers, across a broad array of UK and EU regulatory advice. The firm excels at strategic and bespoke advice to clients, often involving advice given with a view to ensuring compliance across numerous regulatory frameworks. Rachpal Thind provides β€˜very thorough advice’ to clients including Bank of Cyprus - which she advised on the regulatory issues surrounding its application for a listing on the London Stock Exchange. β€˜As bright as they come’ and recognised as a β€˜leader in his field’, Leonard Ng is β€˜exceptionally practical in his views on FCA and EU regulation’ and is a β€˜go-to lawyer’ for hedge and private equity funds across the myriad regulatory matters affecting their businesses. As part of his broad-ranging expertise, John Casanova regularly handles payments-related matters. Clients include Managed Funds Association, Citadel Group and Towerbrook Capital Partners.

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP benefits from β€˜good regulatory experience and knowledge’, and is β€˜prepared to provide advice confidently to sell side firms’. William Garner has a focus on UK and EU regulations affecting the wholesale trading and markets work and is appreciated by clients, not only for his legal expertise, but also his former trading experience. Garner continues to provide regulatory support to financial blockchain specialist, SETL, including an analysis of the regulatory impact of using this novel Fintech technology in the global payments and clearing and settlement space and assistance with an application to use the FCA’s new regulatory sandbox. The β€˜responsive’ Jonathan Bayliss has a β€˜good grasp of the issues’, particularly as they pertain to the private banking and wealth management sector.

DLA Piper has an β€˜impressive feel for financial services regulation and is adept at giving a balanced, commercial approach which effectively navigates the complexities of the regulatory framework’. The β€˜highly experienced’ Michael McKee provides β€˜skilful and practical advice’ across a broad spectrum of regulatory issues including MiFID II, payments regulation and the Senior Managers Regime. He recently provided all the necessary regulatory input, as part of a multi-disciplinary group, to enable the successful establishment of new digital challenger bank Masthaven Bank. McKee is also on the FCA’s Skilled Person panel and is therefore a useful resource on contentious matters handled by the firm. Formerly at the FSA, contentious head Tony Katz β€˜knows the regulation and the regulator intimately and is unafraid to make difficult judgement calls’. Sam Millar is also recommended and is part of a β€˜hardworking and strong team’ which is effectively able to mobilise practitioners not only out of London but also throughout its regional network. Clients include Goldman Sachs, HSBC and Noor Capital.

Able to effectively leverage expertise within the firm’s regional offices, and also now benefiting from an enhanced international presence courtesy of the recent merger with Sutherland & Asbill, Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP’s β€˜growing reputation’ in the financial services regulation space has been built around the β€˜astute and commercial’ advice it provides to both buy and sell-side clients across the panoply of regulations impacting their businesses. Andrew Henderson and Ronald Paterson are frequently at the forefront of the most significant matters handled by the group including recent advice on EU Market Abuse Regulation for clients including AON and Bank of China. Henderson and Paterson are also well attuned to the burgeoning robo-advice market and continue to act for M&G and WealthKernel on regulatory issues associated with it. The β€˜very knowledgeable and tactical’ Gregory Brandman leads the firm’s efforts on the contentious front and provides an β€˜effective service’ to financial institutions and executives subject to FCA enforcement actions. Formerly global head of sanctions for Barclays, Zia Ullah β€˜is uniquely positioned to provide advice that takes into account the perspectives of the business/financial crime team’. The β€˜very commercial’ Manchester-based James Southworth leads the firm’s financial services litigation offering for the North of England.

Praised for its β€˜superb industry knowledge’, Fieldfisher provides β€˜business-oriented and pragmatic’ advice to an impressive roster of clients, particularly those within the asset management space. Team head Kirstene Baillie has provided strategic advice to numerous alternative investment fund managers on the restructuring of their products in the aftermath of the implementation of AIFMD. Baillie advised Downing on reviewing one of its discretionary management portfolio products and restructuring it such that it can now be treated as separate portfolio arrangements rather than as an AIF and thereby avoid the extra onerous compliance issues associated with AIFMD. The β€˜experienced and knowledgeable’ John Worthy has a focus on payments work, while the arrival in February 2016 from Shearman & Sterling LLP of Azad Ali has strengthened the firm’s capability on the sell-side. Able to combine regulatory enforcement expertise with criminal capabilities, the three-partner litigation offering is well-placed to represent individuals and institutions in FCA investigations which are increasingly using criminal powers as part of their toolkit. Team head Duncan Black handles work for financial institutions and individuals; he is currently representing the CEO of a listed company on an FCA investigation into alleged market abuse and the criminal conduct of insider trading.

Although it is small compared to some of its peers in the ranking, Jones Day’s four-partner financial services team provides β€˜pragmatic and intelligent advice’ across contentious and non-contentious regulatory issues affecting banks, funds and broker-dealers. Usually acting on matters with an international perspective (where the team often partners with practitioners in one or several of its international offices or instructs local counsel should it not have a relevant presence), the London team provided significant regulatory input alongside the Paris office on the firm’s advice to Euronext on its irrevocable cash offer to acquire LCH Clearnet Group. Formerly in-house at Merrill Lynch, team head John Ahern has strong credentials across trading, clearing and settlement work and is β€˜very proficient in EU regulatory law’. The β€˜extremely good’ Harriet Territt often handles FCA investigations for clients, and is also increasingly active in ensuring effective risk management measures are in place for clients to avoid potential litigation. β€˜Proficient and thorough litigator’ Lucas Moore β€˜has the ability to explain technical and complex legalities in a practical and understandable way’; he continues to act in litigation arising from bank failures. Other clients include BNP Paribas, Standard Bank, Fidelity and Tradition Group.

Often working closely with its US offices, Mayer Brown International LLP’s two-partner team is particularly accomplished in relation to sanctions and anti-money laundering issues, both from a risk management perspective, in addition to in a contentious setting. Mark Compton has a strong grounding in UK and EU financial regulation and regularly acts for a range of investment bank, proprietary traders and funds as they seek to navigate the various directives and legislation impacting on their businesses. Formerly at the FCA, Guy Wilkes has considerable experience of corporate financial crime particularly involving the financial services sector.

The β€˜absolutely first-rate’ team at Pinsent Masons LLP β€˜really knows its stuff’, particularly as it pertains to regulation affecting the insurance, asset management, wealth management and retail banking sectors. β€˜Detail-oriented’ and β€˜realistic about what can and cannot be achieved in the regulatory context’, the firm provides standalone advisory work, in addition to regulatory advice which is complementary to transactions in the sector. Described as a β€˜real pleasure to work with’, David Heffron β€˜leaves no stone unturned in exploring options for his clients’. He recently advised E.ON UK plc on its Energy Installation Services business' successful application for FCA authorisation as a consumer credit firm. Elizabeth Budd has long standing regulatory expertise on behalf of general and life insurers and is a key member of the non-contentious team that also include products and payments expert Tony Anderson. Colin Read leads on the contentious front and has a β€˜focus on trouble-shooting for insurers and wealth management clients’. The team has also been particularly active on data breaches and cyber-crime and is well-regarded for its work on redress schemes where the FCA has been unhappy about the customer experience. Clients include AXA, Allianz and HSBC.

At Baker McKenzie, team head Arun Srivastava has significant visibility in the market, from both a contentious and non-contentious perspective. In spite of a relatively small team based out of London, Srivastava is effectively able to marshall teams utilising practitioners spread out across the firm’s broad network on complex multi-jurisdictional matters including the recent LIBOR and FX cases, where the firm had a significant role.

The β€˜high-quality’ team at Dechert LLP handles regulatory work for clients in the investment fund and asset management sector including AIFMD and MiFID II compliance projects. Dual UK and US-qualified Richard Heffner recently advised Investcorp on the Β£222m acquisition of 3i’s debt management business. Heffner also recently acted for T. Rowe Price on the establishment of a new UK UCITS umbrella fund with five initial sub-funds. US-qualified Karen Anderberg is recommended for her ability to advise UK, US and European investment funds and managers on US regulatory issues. The β€˜commercial’ Stuart Martin has a β€˜deep and broad knowledge of collective investment’ and is a key member of the team that also includes the β€˜very knowledgeable’ Richard Frase and Peter Astleford.

Able to leverage the firm’s market-leading roster of funds clients (particularly those in the private equity sector), Kirkland & Ellis International LLP’s two-partner team provides an β€˜invaluable’ service on the regulatory aspects associated with new fundraisings, investments made in the financial services sector and ongoing compliance work. β€˜Very responsive and pragmatic’ team head Lisa Cawley β€˜strikes a perfect balance between technical knowledge and accuracy, as well as market awareness and commercialism’. Cawley recently advised Summit Partners on the regulatory, AIFMD and structuring matters relating to the fund raising of Summit Partners Growth Equity Fund IX, Summit Partners Venture Capital Fund IV and Summit Partners Europe Growth Equity Fund II. Other key members of the team include recently promoted partner Prem Mohan and β€˜very commercial’ associate Adam Skinner. Clients include Starwood Capital, Lion Capital and Warburg Pincus.

Headed by Rob Moulton following his move in June 2016 from Ashurst, Latham & Watkins’s nascent financial services team has rapidly established itself as a significant player in the market following a number of other key hires including Nicola Higgs, also from Ashurst in September 2016 and most recently in August 2017 by that of David Berman from Macfarlanes. The firm has been particularly active advising on MiFID II implementation mandates for a raft of clients including Jefferies, Rothschild and JP Morgan. The team also benefits from the ability to tap into the expertise of practitioners across the firm’s global network and this has already manifested itself in a high-profile project, alongside the New York office, on behalf of Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Merrill Lynch International in relation to a major review of the policies and procedures of the global divisions of research, equities and FICC and their compliance with the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) Principles for Financial Benchmarks..

Providing a mix of standalone advisory work, regulatory advice pursuant to financial services M&A, and the regulatory aspects associated with the bringing to market of new products, Osborne Clarke LLP’s three-partner team is particularly noted for its expertise within the consumer finance, payments and asset management space. Paul Anning spearheads the team’s work on the payments front; he has been advising JPMorgan on the regulatory aspects associated with several payments projects including on the application of PSD2 (the second payment services directive) to all of its Treasury Services products. Tim Simmonds is also recommended, in particular for his regulatory expertise surrounding fund formation within the alternative asset management space, as is Kate Johnson who has a particular niche advising on crowdfunding regulatory work.

Now one of the few firms approved by the FCA for skilled persons conduct issues, RPC’s stature in the financial services regulatory landscape continues to grow. Praised for its β€˜first-rate insurance industry knowledge’, the firm regularly advises underwriters, insurance companies and Lloyd’s of London entities across the spectrum of non-contentious and contentious regulatory work. As well as his insurance market expertise, the β€˜very well-respected and well-connected’ Robbie Constance is also active in the wealth management sector, where his recent work includes a growing number of instructions surrounding the regulatory issues impacting on the burgeoning robo adviser market. The β€˜responsive and dedicated’ Richard Burger is β€˜very strong on regulatory matters’, particularly as they relate to sanctions and financial crime where he is able to β€˜bring a unique insight to his advice’ as a result of his previous experience at the FSA. Burger recently represented CT Capital in an FCA enforcement investigation relating to Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) complaints handling. β€˜First-rate litigator’ Parham Kouchikali is also recommended and regularly defends clients in FCA enforcement actions.

Leveraging the firm’s impressive roster of global funds clients, Ropes & Gray LLP’s regulatory team provides a vital service to these funds as they grapple with the raft of regulations impacting upon their businesses. Praised for her β€˜knowledge of the law and regulation’ surrounding the investment funds industry, the β€˜responsive and commercial’ Michelle Moran has a β€˜keen legal mind and is able to combine legal knowledge with an excellent business sense’ honed by her previous role as head of legal at Invesco. Moran is also abreast of regulatory developments in the market and is well-positioned to provide β€˜proactive advice’ which is cognizant of the mood music coming out of Brussels. Counsel Anna Lawry is also recommended for derivatives advice on behalf of asset management clients. Monica Gogna joined Dechert LLP in September 2017.

Praised for its β€˜excellent technical knowledge’, Taylor Wessing LLP provides β€˜high-quality advice’ to a varied mix of clients including wealth management entities, Fintech companies, banks and consumer finance companies. The β€˜very astute’ Jonathan Rogers provides β€˜sound commercial judgement’, and as well as recently advising challenger bank, Monzo Bank, across a raft of regulatory matters (including securing PRA approvals in respect the bank's tier 1 capital instruments), he also advised high-profile digital wealth manager Nutmeg on the regulatory aspects associated with its latest fund raising. On the contentious front, Shane Gleghorn represents financial institutions in regulatory enforcement actions and private litigation, and David McCluskey is noted for his β€˜dogged and incisive’ work in relation to the criminal aspects of financial investigations and litigation.

Benefiting from expertise across the firm’s network including in the US, White & Case LLP’s two-partner regulatory team excels at advising financial institution clients on regulatory matters with a cross-border complexion. Stuart Willey heads the team out of London and has recently provided regulatory advice pursuant to numerous financial services M&A-related transactions. As well as working with other practice groups, Willey also regularly handles discrete standalone regulatory work for clients and is recognised for his work relating to the risk retention rules associated with the CLO market. The team was strengthened towards the end of 2016 by the arrival of former EMEA regulatory counsel at BNY Mellon James Greig.

Benefiting from β€˜high-level real world understanding of the regulator’, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld’s two-partner team provides an β€˜extremely strong level of industry/regulatory knowledge’ to a range of financial services clients including those in the asset management industry. Active for both individuals and financial institutions, and also able to tap into the expertise of practitioners based out of the US and Asia, the team is well-placed to handle cases involving multiple global regulators. Formerly head of enforcement at the FSA, practice head Helen Marshall has an excellent perspective of the market and someone whose β€˜straight talking style is a refreshing change’. Also formerly at the FSA, the team’s other partner Rosemarie Paul is praised for her β€˜impressive work ethic, her attention to detail and ability to see the big picture beyond the detail’. Paul is also praised for her β€˜genuine interest behind the FCA’s "behavioural economics focus" and has read around this’. On the non-contentious front, despite the recent departure of Christopher Leonard who has moved in-house, the firm still has significant capability at counsel level where its focus is on regulations impacting the investment management sector.

The two-partner team at Blake Morgan LLP has β€˜solid expertise’ across retail and consumer matters, both from an advisory and contentious perspective. Team head Richard Humphreys has particular expertise in the Consumer Credit Act and has been advising consumer credit funders on FCA regulatory issues. Formerly at the FSA, β€˜knowledgeable and personable’ senior associate Felicity Rowan β€˜understand the regulator’s mindset and is exceptionally strong in the current FCA hot topic of retail, conduct, consumer credit regulation and culture’.

Bond Dickinson LLP’s three-partner team provides β€˜responsive, practical, commercial and cost-effective’ advice to a wide variety of clients within the retail sector of the financial services industry. β€˜Very knowledgeable’ team head Andrew Barber has β€˜in-depth knowledge of prevailing market conditions’ particularly as it relates to consumer credit regulatory matters. Barber has recently been particularly active advising clients in the retail (shopping sector) on consumer credit issues including advising New Look Retailers on the regulatory issues linked to the outsourcing of credit services to customers together with the supply and operation of staff and VIP discount cards. The arrival of Emma Radmore from Dentons in August 2016 enhances the firm’s regulatory expertise particularly in relation to advice on the perimeter of the Financial Services and Markets Act, in terms of both products and activities. Clients include TSB Bank, Sainsbury’s Bank, B&Q and Brewin Dolphin.

Covington & Burling LLP is also ranked.

Although the team was weakened on the commodities and derivatives regulatory front by the departure in December 2016 of Rosali Pretorius to Simmons & Simmons, Dentons still remains a presence in the market, particularly in relation to the regulatory aspects associated with retail and wealth management sectors. β€˜Commercial and technical’ team head Michael Wainwright recently provided the regulatory overlay pursuant to Aegon’s Β£140m acquisition of investment platform Cofunds. Wainwright also advised UBS Private Bank on an update of the bank’s mortgage documentation to reflect changes to FCA rules following the implementation of the mortgage credit directive. β€˜Responsive and commercial’ managing associate Nicholas Ralph has β€˜extensive technical knowledge of financial services laws in the UK and is able to identify risks and solutions quickly and succinctly’. Other clients include Skipton Builing Society, The Co-operative Bank and LGT Group Foundation.

The β€˜small but knowledgeable’ two-partner team at Farrer & Co provides β€˜pragmatic and commercial advice’ and β€˜goes the extra mile to deliver a first-class service’ to many leading private banks and wealth management firms. Team head Grania Baird has a β€˜broad knowledge of the regulatory world in which private banks and wealth managers operate’ and is noted for her β€˜appreciation of the practical implications of the law and ability to advise accordingly’. Baird recently undertook a review for a major private bank to ensure that its client money arrangements were in line with the current FCA regulations in this area. The recently promoted Andy Peterkin is also recommended.

Fox Williams LLP provides a β€˜commercial and responsive service’ across both non-contentious and contentious matters. Formerly at the FSA, Peter Wright is well-placed to β€˜advise clients on how the FCA will react and respond’ and provides β€˜clear, accurate and sensible advice’ to clients facing FCA investigations. β€˜An expert on UK banking regulation’, Sona Ganatra regularly represents senior executives who are subject to regulatory investigations. James Carlton specialises in financial crime and has been involved in numerous high-profile FCA and SFO fraud investigations. β€˜Well-versed on market developments’ in the Fintech sector, β€˜very commercial’ team head Jonathan Segal acts for numerous peer-to-peer lenders. Benefiting from former in-house experience within the brokerage industry, Nigel Brahams is β€˜excellent at identifying the key issues that are relevant’ to clients in that space. As part of his broad-ranging regulatory expertise, Brahams also has a particular focus on blockchain matters.

Headed by Gregg Beechey, Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson (London) LLP’s one-partner team provides a β€˜knowledgeable, responsive and practical’ service in support of the firm’s growing asset management presence in the London market, in addition to matters emanating out of the US. Praised for his β€˜sound commercial judgement and ability to recognise the points that matter’, Beechey has a β€˜real depth of industry knowledge’ and recently provided the regulatory overlay to Permira on the raising of its latest flagship buyout fund, Permira VI. Other clients include Duke Street, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan and SVG Capital.

Gowling WLG provides a β€˜responsive and commercial service’ across a broad range of regulatory issues impacting on clients in the consumer credit, Fintech, asset management and insurance space. Associate Richard Ellis has β€˜significant insurance knowledge’ and delivers advice from a β€˜pragmatic industry standpoint’. Alongside Sharon Ayres and Penny Sanders, Ellis has been handling a significant amount of work for Ecclesiastical Insurance Office, including ensuring insurance products are compliant with regulation, structuring and presenting insurance products appropriately and assistance drafting delegated underwriting arrangements. Other highlights included advising the Singapore Exchange on the regulatory aspects underpinning its acquisition of the Baltic Exchange. Other clients include Gravis Capital Partners, Crowdcube Capital and Route 66 Ventures.

Led by Daniel Tunkel, Howard Kennedy LLP’s financial regulation team is particularly active advising small and lower mid-cap investment funds on the regulation impacting their businesses. Tunkel regularly assists foreign clients establish regulated businesses in, or promote their investment products and services in the UK.

K&L Gates LLP is particularly accomplished at providing regulatory advice across the gamut of issues impacting asset management clients including matters relating to MiFID II and EMIR. Andrew Massey is noted for his retail funds expertise and recently advised PanAgora Asset Management on the scope and application of EMIR and on the application of AIFMD and broader marketing issues. The β€˜solutions-oriented and responsive’ Sean Donovan-Smith provides β€˜practical, business friendly legal/regulatory solutions’, particularly in relation to funds-related regulatory matters. The β€˜very knowledgeable and responsive’ Philip Morgan is also recommended. David Savell has a β€˜stellar reputation’ for contentious work and β€˜excels at leading defence teams in complex financial matters’. Other clients include Federated Investors, Wells Fargo and Genesis Investment Management. Jacob Ghanty joined Kemp Little LLP.

Katten Muchin Rosenman UK LLP provides a β€˜creative, practical and business-minded service’ to clients at every point along the trading continuum on both the buy and sell side including broker dealers, clearing houses, and proprietary trading firms. Much of the London team’s work revolves around advising US clients on their activities in Europe and helping minimize the regulations they are subject to. Nathaniel Lalone has been advising the Futures Industry Association on several cross-border initiatives including legal due diligence and analysis to facilitate US futures commission merchants in meeting the new "indirect clearing" requirements under MiFIR for exchange-traded derivatives. David Brennand has a particular focus advising asset managers on the structuring and ongoing operation of hedge and other alternative fund structures investing in a diverse range of asset classes. β€˜An authority in her field’, US-qualified Carolyn Jackson is able to β€˜combine her US and EU regulatory knowledge’ along with former trading experience to provide an β€˜excellent service’ on commodities regulatory issues. Neil Robson is also recommended. Other clients include LCH Clearnet, Flow Traders and TwentyFour Asset Management.

Led by the β€˜vastly experienced and knowledgeable’ Robert Courtneidge, Locke Lord LLP’s two-partner team is noted for its β€˜superb service’ to clients throughout the value chain within the payments and cards industry. Courtneidge has been advising Deutsche Bank on the creation of a virtual leger system using electronic money solutions. Siobhan Moore is the other key partner; she recently advised Sodexo Pass International on the migration of a pre-paid programme to a new e-money issuer. Clients include Blue Snap, Paysafe Group and Tuxedo Money Solutions.

Best-known for its contentious financial services expertise, the β€˜responsive’ team at Mishcon de Reya LLP has a β€˜true expertise in FCA investigations and enforcements’. β€˜Very experienced and calm’ team head Adam Epstein is β€˜particularly highly regarded’ for his representation of individuals who are the subject of regulatory enforcement actions. On the non-contentious front, team head Tim Flood is noted for the β€˜commercial and innovative solutions’ he provides to funds. Flood has provided ongoing advice to Woodford Investment Management on UCITS matters and compliance with AML requirements. Associate Charlotte Davidson is also β€˜able and thorough’.

Paul Hastings LLP’s β€˜proactive and well-connected’ four-partner has an β€˜excellent reputation’ for payments-related financial services regulatory matters including virtual currency, e-money and global money transfer programs. Praised for his β€˜excellent people skills’, Ben Regnard-Weinrabe has β€˜wide-ranging knowledge of the payments regulatory environment’ and takes the lead on many of the most important mandates handled by the team. Ashley Winton is β€˜an extremely strong and commercial data privacy expert’. Clients include Facebook, Lloyds Banking Group, Paysafe Group and Hyperwallet.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (UK) LLP’s four-strong team provides a pivotal service to a range of banks, asset managers, and brokers on ad-hoc advisory work, in addition to providing the regulatory overlay pursuant to transactional work. Counsel Patrick Brandt is well-placed to provide insightful advice, particularly in light of his former role at the FSA, and has been busy advising numerous asset managers on AIFMD compliance. Brandt also regularly works with the firm’s corporate and capital markets teams on the regulatory issues associated with a financial services-related M&A transaction or a capital raising by a financial services entity. Brandt recently advised Janus Capital Group on its $6bn merger with Henderson Group, and provided EU regulatory input regarding for Barclays, Deutsche Bank and HSBC as joint bookrunning managers on American Express Credit Corporation’s €1bn bond offering.

β€˜An ideal choice for clients who want a fairly aggressive approach to dealing with the relevant authorities’, Stephenson Harwood has a β€˜very strong practice, particularly acting for individuals on work that straddles the criminal and regulatory sphere’. β€˜Tough and determined’ team head Tony Woodcock has a β€˜complete mastery of his field’ and has vast FCA and PRA experience, on behalf of both individuals and institutions with β€˜enough criminal law instincts to ensure all bases are covered’. The β€˜clever, committed and charming’ Sara George has been involved in β€˜some of the crucial stand offs with the regulators over the past few years’. The β€˜experienced, approachable and thorough’ John Fordham is also recommended. On the advisory front, Richard Small specializes in market abuse, custody and regulatory issues impacting on the private wealth sector. As well as discrete advisory work, Sean Jeffrey also regularly provides the regulatory input on transactional matters within the financial services sector.

TLT has a focus on advisory and contentious work across the retail sector. Russell Kelsall is active across both non-contentious and contentious work and is noted for his β€˜knowledge in relation to consumer credit matters, in particular’. Kelsall and Emily Benson, who was herself formerly at the FSA, have been involved in a considerable amount of advisory work for consumer credit sector clients following the transition of regulation from the OFT to the FCA. Formerly head of investigations and enforcement at Barclays, Jake McQuitty heads the firm’s contentious offering. Clients include RBS, Nationwide Building Society and Santander UK plc.

Led by the β€˜very experienced and straight-talking’ Peter Bibby, Brown Rudnick LLP’s two-partner team represents individuals and corporates engaged in FCA investigations and enforcement actions. Himself previously head of enforcement at the FSA, Bibby has a β€˜thorough knowledge of the regulator and its rules’; he recently achieved a successful outcome for a major UK fund manager in an FCA investigation into alleged front office failings which made the firm vulnerable to an attempted fraud worth around $120m. Bibby is also representing an executive of a major UK bank in a joint FCA/PRA investigation regarding his conduct as well as that of other senior members of the management during the financial crisis. Neil Micklethwaite is well-versed at representing hedge funds accused of insider trading and market abuse offences.

Boutique firm Corker Binning has β€˜huge expertise and experience in advising senior individuals in high-profile, complex and sensitive criminal investigations’. A β€˜doyen of the field’, Peter Binning specialises in regulatory cases with a significant criminal overlay and has experience defending individuals accused of a range of offences including insider dealing, sanctions and tax evasion. Binning also has experience of handling some of the more esoteric cases around including his recent cold shouldering case on behalf of the respondent in what was only the third such case in the history of the Takeover Panel. The β€˜excellent’ David Corker is also recommended, as is the β€˜incredibly talented’ Jessica Parker and the β€˜very erudite and savvy’ Andrew Smith. The team was also enhanced by the arrival in October 2016 of Claire Cross from the criminal prosecution team within the FCA.

Irwin Mitchell’s two-partner team has a strong reputation in the market for advising both corporates and individuals as defendants in criminal and civil regulatory investigations. In addition, the team continues to handle a growing amount of work on behalf of corporates in internal investigations involving potential criminal and regulatory breaches. β€˜Very canny’ team head Sarah Wallace is a β€˜streetwise financial services lawyer and is very alive to the interplay of civil and criminal aspects of an investigation or dispute’. Wallace recently successfully persuaded the FCA to drop its investigation brought against a UK company which had been accused of providing advice and promotion of an unauthorised collective investment scheme. Senior associate Katie Byrne was also involved in the aforementioned matter, and like Wallace is particularly adept at handling matters where there is a significant interplay between civil and criminal proceedings.

A β€˜standout performer’, Kingsley Napley LLP’s β€˜corporate criminal expertise affords it greater bite in the area’. The β€˜highly intelligent and calm’ Stephen Parkinson is β€˜admired by those who lead the prosecuting authorities, from whom he obtains, as a consequence, results which appear impossible’. The β€˜very well respected’ Louise Hodges is the β€˜first choice for traders and other regulated persons who find themselves in the line of fire’. Blessed with β€˜extraordinary emotional intelligence’, Eve Giles has a true β€˜dedication to her clients’ cause’ and is also appreciated for her β€˜mastery of interview tactics’.

Specialising in regulatory investigations at the nexus of civil and criminal liability, Peters & Peters Solicitors LLP has an β€˜exceptional reputation defending individuals’ where it is able to provide β€˜practical, subtle and precise advice’. Hannah Laming β€˜combines exceptional knowledge of the law with acute tactical awareness’ and is representing a company executive in an FCA investigation as to potential insider dealing. β€˜Highly respected for his modesty, integrity, balance and his calm’, Neil Swift provides β€˜excellent judgement’ to clients across a broad array of conduct issues including handling numerous matters for individuals accused of market manipulation. Described variously by clients as the β€˜Godfather and Gandalf in one body’ and a β€˜market legend’, Monty Raphael QC has β€˜seen it all’ in the white-collar arena and remains a key member of the team that also includes β€˜fantastically creative and tenacious litigator’ Sarah Gabriel.

WilmerHale has a β€˜fantastic reputation’ representing individuals who are the subject of regulatory investigations. The team continues to be involved in many of the most high-profile scandals affecting the financial services industry, including numerous engagements relating to market manipulation. The β€˜commercial and tactical’ Stephen Pollard is an β€˜excellent advocate’ and leads the team that also includes β€˜clever and confident’ counsel Elly Proudlock, who is noted for her β€˜excellence on the details’. Senior associate David Rundle also has a burgeoning practice and has an excellent perspective of the regulator, having previously spent time within the FCA’s enforcement division.

Withers LLP has a β€˜strong financial services practice, particularly when it comes to representing individuals facing regulatory action’. Formerly at the FSA for a number years, Harvey Knight β€˜knows the system inside out’ and will β€˜really go the extra mile for his clients’.

Litigation boutique Bivonas Law LLP provides β€˜high service levels’ to individuals facing regulatory investigations or criminal charges. A β€˜credit to the industry’, Cindy Dorrington displays β€˜great tenacity and work ethics’ and has been involved for individuals in numerous benchmark cases. Dorrington also has significant expertise in relation to fraud matters including money laundering cases. β€˜Dedicated and hardworking’ managing partner Antony Brown is also recommended, as is civil fraud expert John Bechelet, who has a β€˜great ability to get to the nub of a problem and to explain complex issues in layman’s terms’. Although the firm is largely focused on contentious work, it also provides a considerable amount of advisory assistance to clients on matters relating to the implementation of the Senior Managers Regime.

Traditionally one of the β€˜leading conflict-free banking litigation firms’, Cooke, Young & Keidan LLP has, since its establishment in 2009, supplemented that expertise β€˜with an excellent and increasing reputation in contentious financial services, particularly with banking litigation becoming ever more complex with regulatory elements and issues’. The β€˜conscientious and personable’ Stephen Elam heads the firm’s FCA regulatory practice and has expertise across many of the most pressing issues occupying the minds of the regulator including recent work relating to benchmark and fix manipulation. The β€˜hugely energetic’ Marc Keidan has a β€˜key ability to think outside the box’ and regularly acts in financial disputes in opposition to the banks and in hedge fund related work.

Praised for his β€˜exceptional industry knowledge and awareness’, Justin McClelland is the sole partner within Winston & Strawn London LLP’s financial services contentious team. Active across both the retail and wholesale arena for both individuals and institutions, much of the work handled by McClelland is of a cross-jurisdictional nature and often involves co-ordinated investigations/enforcement actions by the UK regulators as well as in the US in the form of the DOJ and SEC. Recent work has included representing individuals in relation to LIBOR and FX.

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Legal Developments in London for Financial services


    Aziz Rahman explains the latest legal test for dishonesty and its importance in investment fraud cases.
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