Firms To Watch: Court of protection

Ashfords LLP fields a ‘really strong team which deals with some of the more complex welfare matters before the Court of Protection’. Katie Webber. Kerry Morgan Gould and Michael Alden co-head the department, which was pleased to add Jess Flanagan to its ranks, as a consultant, from Clarke Willmott LLP.
It is a ‘really powerful’ team at Macfarlanes LLP ‘that offers a Rolls-Royce service to clients from the highest reaches of society: they ensure they have a deep understanding of their clients’ ultimate aims and keep a keen eye on the bigger picture’. Charles Lloyd is at the helm.
Michelmores LLP has a ‘good solid base in the South West of England with a budding new team under Holly Mieville-Hawkins' guidance. Always a solid option to refer to when there is a conflict, and a safe pair of hands is required'.
Mark Keenan heads a multi-disciplinary offering at Mishcon de Reya LLP. It is praised for ‘looking after its clients’ interests with absolute diligence, and pursuing contested litigation with verve and without leaving a stone unturned’.
The ‘collaborative’ team at Moore Barlow has Rebecca Sparrow at the helm. Sparrow ‘is conscientious, thorough, knowledgeable and a very experienced Court of Protection Solicitor’.
The team at Reeds Solicitors is led from Cardiff by Sarah Griffiths-Jones. The practice has continued to grow since its 2019 launch, expanding into Bristol in spring 2022, with recent work of note including some significant High Court cases.
‘All three partners at Rook Irwin Sweeney LLP are exceptional lawyers at the top of their games, with deservedly excellent reputations’. Alex Rook; Polly Sweeney and Anne-Marie Irwin are the heads of department.

Court of protection in London

Irwin Mitchell

The ‘huge’ team at Irwin Mitchell has a ‘highly respected national offering’ across its ten offices. It supports in excess of 1,500 clients nationwide and has over 1,250 deputyships. The group offers expert advice on all COP matters, including litigated complex welfare disputes and deprivation of liberty safeguards. It also covers property, affairs and welfare deputyships. The agile team acts as professional deputy/trustee on many high-value cases involving multi-million-pound funds and manages in excess of £1.5bn of protected parties’ assets. Lucy Nicol frequently acts as a professional deputy and trustee for clients who have received multimillion pound damages as a result of medical negligence claims or serious injury. Yogi Amin undertakes a broad range of judicial review, human rights and mental capacity law cases. In addition, Amin is an Accredited Legal Representative for Mental Capacity welfare work. Damian Hodkinson is also highly regarded. Angela Jackman KC receives a steady of instructions from the Official Solicitor.

Practice head(s):

Lucinda Nicol; Yogi Amin

Other key lawyers:

Damian Hodkinson; Angela Jackman KC; Sean Atwood; Lucy Bazley


‘Irwin Mitchell’s Court of protection team is stellar! I have been working with Lucy Nicol who is absolutely brilliant, she is prepared to grapple with very tricky clients, she is approachable, extremely knowledgeable and absolutely first rate’.

‘The largest cross-country firm with offices local to most areas’.

‘Sean Atwood has a great deal of experience and understanding of their client’s needs’.

‘Extremely efficient with regard to access to funds. Organisationally very capable with big projects such as house extensions’.

Amazing individuals who make you feel respected and considered. We have built up a real relationship with those that we deal with. They show compassion and care and are also extremely capable and knowledgeable about their jobs’.

‘A real family feel which is so needed and appreciated. I find them caring, supportive, and empathic. They work as a really collaborative and fun empowering team. I am so grateful for their passion to get my son what he needs‘.

‘Lucy Nicol and Lucy Bazley -go the extra mile and really care, show compassion and empathy with what can be really difficult scenarios. They are always willing to listen and try. I appreciate them’.

‘Lucy Nicol heads up an exceptional team of hard working and really excellent lawyers, they genuinely care about their clients and go the extra mile. Lucy is exceptional, she is calm and efficient and very client friendly‘.

Key clients

Amy McLennan




LF v A NHS Trust & Ors





Work highlights

  • Represented Amy McLennan, mother of William Verden, in high-profile Court of Protection proceedings relating to whether it was in William’s best interests to undergo a kidney transplant.
  • Represented DC in Court of Protection proceedings in relation to a dispute over whether he should receive a Covid-19 vaccination and the associated boosters.
  • Represented the father of G, a 27-year-old woman who suffered from a serious degenerative neurological condition, in proceedings in the Court of Appeal concerning whether the Court of Protection has the power to make injunctions.

Thomson Snell & Passmore

Thomson Snell & Passmore has a ‘gold standard team’, which has a ‘long-standing reputation that is thoroughly deserved, because year after year it produces excellent work’. At the helm is Brian Bacon. The group acts as deputy in over 250 cases with an estimated value of over £350m in assets. The practice is renowned for its expertise in property and affairs cases, especially in high-value catastrophic injury claims. It continually advises on capacity issues, and frequently acts as an expert witness on such matters. Rosie Hamlyn has a particular focus on helping clients who have been involved in catastrophic accidents. Catherine Fuller is another important member of the department. She specialises in applications for individuals with severe brain injuries, and other complex medical conditions. Newly promoted partner, Louise Mathias-Williams, has particular expertise in advising on care fee funding. In addition, Mathias-Williams regularly prepares applications to the Court of Protection relating to lifetime gifts; statutory wills and Trustee Act applications for elderly clients. Tom Hall is now at Hugh James.

Practice head(s):

Brian Bacon

Other key lawyers:

Rosie Hamlyn; Catherine Fuller; Louise Mathias-Williams


‘Brian Bacon runs a fantastic Court of Protection/Deputy team – I can highly recommend him. The team has huge experience is amazingly efficient’.

‘Brian Bacon is a superb leader of the team: highly intelligent, hugely able and caring. Catherine Fuller is another who is thoroughly deserving of mention. Both are fantastic leaders of the team and inspire utter confidence when advising the most injured and vulnerable clients’.

‘They have a fantastic team including Rosie Hamlyn and Louise Mathias-Williams both of whom have long experience of looking after the elderly and vulnerable’.

Withers LLP

The court of protection team at Withers LLP is 'vastly experienced and has acted in some of the highest profile cases. It traverses this sometimes-idiosyncratic jurisdiction expertly and secures excellent results for its often HNW clients.' As well as acting for families and appointed representatives of older and vulnerable people, it regularly acts for trustees, executors, charities and other professional groups. Julia Abrey has a particular interest in cross-border mental capacity issues. Stephen Richards also garners considerable praise for his expertise in elder law matters. Paul Hewitt specialises in all types of trust and probate disputes, and routinely advises on contentious court of protection matters. Natasha Stourton  covers issues such as statutory wills, lifetime gifts and contested registrations. Senior associate Alice Tomlin is another key figure who covers a range of contentious trust and succession disputes, and has a particular focus on court of protection matters. The team also excels at advising on disabled trusts, and advance decisions to refuse medical treatment.

Practice head(s):

Julia Abrey; Stephen Richards

Other key lawyers:

Paul Hewitt; Natasha Stourton; Alice Tomlin


‘Stephen Roberts leads an internationally recognised team of private client and contentious probate lawyers. All the team are approachable and straight talking. Extremely valuable when difficult decisions need to be made’.

‘Julia Abrey, head of the elder client team has the right balance of empathy and detailed knowledge of complex law to deliver not just a first class service- but one where the client feels truly supported’.

‘Withers Court of Protection Team are second to none. The team have great experience whilst also the sensitivity needed for these matters. Stephen Richards is a leader in the field. Handles multi-party complex matters with ease’.

‘Alice Tomlin is always on top of her brief and always sees the key points. When Alice speaks people listen’.

Stephen Richards is both thorough and strategic, allowing him to see through a problem early and work towards a practical, attainable solution. Natasha Stourton is calm, confident, and knowledgeable. She able to rise above the fray to effectively promote her client’s case;’

‘Simply the market leaders. The gold standard. Paul Hewitt is an extraordinary lawyer. The name you want on your side. Stephen Richards is firmly intelligent, responsive and kind’.

‘Hugely well-coordinated team – they work seamlessly together. They are all very good lawyers, and nice to work with too. Paul Hewitt – excellent and experienced litigator. Stephen Richards – tireless litigator with excellent judgment’.

‘The team has a strong international reach, so you can approach them in relation to most jurisdictions and they will have knowledge, experience or contacts. Julia Abrey has a strong knowledge of many jurisdictions and is pleasant and efficient to work with’.

Key clients

Gopichand Parmanand Hinduja, Prakash Parmanand Hinduja and Ashok Parmanand Hinduja

Abbotstone Law

Francesca Gabbitas heads the team at Abbotstone Law, which is praised for its ‘consistently high-quality work’, and for its skill at dealing with ‘some extremely challenging cases and individuals’. It provides a ‘properly individualised and compassionate service to some of the neediest clients’. The group has an established practice in the mental capacity sector and is adept at dealing with the crossover between mental capacity and complex mental health issues. It represents vulnerable adults and family members in health and welfare court of protection proceedings. In addition, it is regularly instructed by the Official Solicitor. Kate Luscombe and Andrea Spyrou are other significant members of the department. Daniel Bradley joined the team as a consultant solicitor in September 2022.

Practice head(s):

Francesca Gabbitas

Other key lawyers:

Kate Luscombe; Rhiannon Jones; Andrea Spyrou; Angela Smith; Frances Rattray; Daniel Bradley: Lucinda Broad


‘I am currently working on a case with Francesca Gabbitas and she is excellent. Her contact and updates are second to none and she is competent and confident’.

‘Meticulous preparation of cases, careful consideration of best interests and collaboration with others involved in P’s welfare’.

‘Rhiannon has the right balance between working with local authorities to find a way forward, but equally stands firm when local authority is not proceeding as they should’.

‘Andrea Spyrou is an expert in giving a voice to the voiceless, and works tirelessly and compassionately on behalf of all of her clients, including in some of the most complex and difficult cases’.

‘Angela Smith is very experienced Court of Protection solicitor, who will give each case the individualised attention and thought that is required, has exceptional ability to communicate with and support highly vulnerable clients with very complex needs, and family members’.

‘Daniel Bradley is an exceptional lawyer in the field of Court of Protection. He is extremely sensitive to the specific (and often complex) needs of his clients, and he is rigorous in ensuring that their best interests are identified and protected. He is thorough, thoughtful and pragmatic’.

‘Lucinda Broad stands out for me. She epitomises the experienced and conscientious mental capacity law practitioner. I have always found her to be attuned to her Mental Capacity law clients and being able to effortlessly empathise with them whilst remaining professional at all times’.

The team covers a wide area of the country which not all firms can accommodate. The people I work with are empathetic and handle very personal subjects with tact and sensitivity’.

Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP

With Donna Holmes at the helm at Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP, it provides tailored deputy and welfare services for over 190 clients. It helps those who have received high-value catastrophic injury settlements, as well as those who are on state benefits. It is managing over £86m of assets. The team is well-equipped to handle the full spectrum of issues. Many of its cases straddle health and welfare, as well as property and affairs. In addition, it is frequently appointed as interim panel deputy as part of ongoing proceedings, increasingly where there are investigations into the past dealings of abusive attorneys or deputies. Douglas Houghton deals with both property and affairs matters, including statutory wills, financial abuse claims, and contested deputyship applications. He also assists lay deputies.

Practice head(s):

Donna Holmes

Other key lawyers:

Douglas Houghton; Puja Desai


‘They have handled matters professionally and sensitively, giving prompt attention to matters, giving sound advice based on their experience and drawing on their wealth of expertise in this field’.

‘Douglas Houghton has shown that he has excellent knowledge and experience in this field. He makes himself available whenever necessary and is always happy to lend a listening ear and help out in any way he can’. 

‘All team members are always helpful, friendly and know their work well. They manage expectations of time scales well. Douglas Houghton is efficient, deals with issues in a timely way and is friendly and polite. He is helpful and explains the situation well’.

‘In my view Anthony Collins are a standout firm. They have a real sense of purpose and ethical backbone’.

‘Donna Holmes is an absolutely superb practitioner on Court of Protection. She wrote what can only be regarded as an impeccable letter of advice that helped resolve a very long and protracted process. Very good experience levels and sage advice’.

‘Very professional and caring at all levels. Very good, immediate responses’.

‘Donna Holmes leads the team. She is truly inspiring. She is the best deputy I deal with. Her team follows her lead. All superb’.

Puja Desai was sympathetic to our cause and did all she could to help us. It was her application which won the day. Without her we would not have the Deputyship’.

Work highlights

  • Acted for TH in a matter where another firm of solicitors had been appointed as Deputy whilst he was under the age of 18. Assisted him with a revised assessment of his capacity.
  • Acted for DS and his mother and brother in a matter involving an application by a firm of solicitors for their prospective appointment as Deputy for their family member.
  • Acted as Deputy for MM who suffered catastrophic injuries as a result of a road traffic collision and for which an award of damages has been recently secured, it has identified a housing solution to meet the complex care needs of MM herself.

Anthony Gold Solicitors LLP

Anthony Gold Solicitors LLP has ‘a very strong and experienced court of protection team’. David Wedgwood jointly heads the department with Alexandra Knipe – both of whom are ‘very well respected’. Wedgwood undertakes both welfare and financial related litigation in the court of protection. He receives referrals from the Official Solicitor, local authorities and other lawyers. Knipe frequently deals with deputyships arising from complex personal injury and clinical negligence cases. She supports clients with acquired brain injuries, severe physical disabilities and mental illnesses. The team is frequently instructed by other firms to undertake expert witness work as well.  Emma Tante often provides litigation COP support on complex multi-million pound compensation claims. In addition, she is continuing to develop her community care experience.

Practice head(s):

Alexandra Knipe; David Wedgwood

Other key lawyers:

Emma Tante


Ms Alexandra Knipe has always been supportive in her approach, ensuring the case manager’s opinion is always noted. She is very professional in her manner and I feel a sense of relief knowing she is the deputy on my cases’.

‘Strong diversity in the team including offices outside of central London. Alex Knipe is the stand out partner but with strong associates supporting’.

‘Very experienced lawyers in this field dealing with some quite complex cases including overseas elements. Well respected with a good depth of knowledge’.

‘My dealings have been with Alexander Knipe and David Wedgewood both of whom are excellent practitioners, professionals with an excellent client manner. We have a common approach to our deputyships and I would recommend them to others’.

‘ Each team member knows their client’s case very well – there is never a sense of one size fits all. Alexandra Knipe and Emma Tante are stand out leadership individuals, inspiring their teams’.

‘Very hard working, with excellent knowledge and lots of panache. Alexandra Knipe is incredibly dedicated to her work. David Wedgwood has excellent knowledge of niche areas of mental capacity law’.

‘Anthony Gold has a very strong and experienced Court of Protection team. Alexandra Knipe and David Wedgwood are experts, well-known in the field and highly regarded’. 

‘I have worked with Ms Emma Tante for several years and have always found her to be incredibly professional and supportive in her role. She can deal with complex cases and situations with ease and demonstrates clear reasoning in her decision making’. 

Work highlights

  • In the matter of JS -acting for a Chinese resident in applications relating to setting up a support plan in Shanghai and facilitating a surrogacy in California, then to bring the baby from USA to PRC.
  • Acting for The Official Solicitor |Numerous matters involving property disputes and consequential instructions to take deputyships to safeguard assets going forward]
  • The Trustees of the M Trusts – acting to recover stolen trust assets, restructuring trusts, then deputyship application, so as to deliver improved quality of life.

Bindmans LLP

The ‘excellent’ and ‘well-respected’ team at Bindmans LLP has ‘solicitors who pay a great attention to detail to get the best results for their clients’. Led by Laura Hobey-Hamsher, the thriving practice continues to act in both contentious and non-contentious matters for many vulnerable adults and their families. In addition, it receives a steady flow of instructions from the Official Solicitor, Independent Mental Capacity Advocates, NGOs, charities, and other members of the legal profession and judiciary. The group is well-placed to handle issues as diverse as medical treatment cases, cross-border matters, and health and welfare issues. In addition, it is skilled at advising on property and financial affairs matters for wealthy individuals. Karen May is a Law Society Accredited Legal Representative in relation to welfare cases. At associate level, Will Whitaker, is well-regarded.

Practice head(s):

Laura Hobey-Hamsher

Other key lawyers:

Will Whitaker; Karen May; Elizabeth Cleaver; Emma Varley


‘Bindmans provides the full panoply of legal support – great admin; great leadership at a partner level. Will Whitaker is thoughtful and committed and passionate about his work. Emma Varley knows Court of Protection work backwards. Karen May is a brilliant operator’. 

‘Probably the strongest all-round CoP team out there. Significant expertise in welfare cases, medical treatment cases, and also some property and financial affairs cases (including LPAs and statutory wills)’.

‘Laura Hobey-Hamsher – vastly experienced, excellent manner with clients, extremely hard-working I would also recommend Emma Varley and Will Whitaker in this team as particular stars’.

‘Excellent team, with solicitors that pay a great attention to detail to get the best results for their clients. The team has a number of solicitors who are experts in vital adjacent areas of law such as community care, mental health, public law and HRA and negligence claims. Will Whitaker Elizabeth Cleaver’.

‘Breadth of Bindmans public law practice- can offer clients full spectrum of legal services. Karen May is a stand out leader in the field’.

‘Karen May and Emma Varley are brilliant’.

‘Laura was an absolute gem. She was extremely strong, confident and caring. Laura was empathetic to the situation at hand, clearly outlined the options available to me, and was super personable in all dealings‘.

Laura Hobey-Hamsher is outstanding. She is also appointed as agent in Serious Medical treatment cases where she will meet with and liaise with the client at very short notice and convey their wishes and feelings to the court. She is smart, funny and a joy to work with’.

Key clients

Tony Hickmott

Health Service Executive of Ireland

Boyes Turner

The ‘very brilliant and helpful’ Ruth Meyer is the practice head at Boyes Turner. It fields a well-organised team which specialises in the management of the property and affairs of high-net-worth individuals who lack capacity, whether they be children, adults or the elderly. The majority of its clients have substantial claims for personal injury or clinical negligence compensation. As well as professional deputyships, the team is regularly approached to provide advice to support lay deputy applications. Alexander Wright, who is ‘the epitome of a very ethical lawyer, and has a good following’, also acts as a professional deputy for property and affairs and works principally with clients who have suffered injuries at birth with lifelong care needs.

Practice head(s):

Ruth Meyer

Other key lawyers:

Alexander Wright; Lindsay Da Re


‘The team are very responsive. Very approachable, lovely to deal with. Listen well to ideas when advocating for the client’.

‘Very personable and knowledgeable that puts clients at ease almost immediately. Ruth Meyer is one of the most caring and considerate individuals in the field’.

‘Alexander Wright has substantial and high quality technical knowledge’.

‘The team deliver excellence in advice, understanding and care for clients who have sustained serious life changing injuries’.

‘Ruth Meyer is a wonderful example of how a deputy should engage with clients and families’.

‘Everyone I work with at Boyes Turner is competent and organised. Ruth Meyer has built up a very strong team around her. The team’s culture is key and they are determined to do the right thing for their clients. As a result clients trust them’.

‘Ruth Meyer and Alexander Wright know their clients extremely well. Whenever I have meetings with them they appear knowledgeable and professional but willing to take advice when given. Every decision I have seen them make has been solely with the client’s best interest at heart. They are supported by a strong team including Lindsay Da Re’.


Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Suzanne Marriott and Sally Ashford co-head the department at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP, which is an integral part of the wider private wealth practice. As a result, it regularly handles major multi-jurisdictional disputes, as well as cases with fraud and other issues relating to the management of large estates and global asset portfolios. Marriott is a member of the Solicitors for the Elderly and the STEP special interest group on mental capacity. Ashford is also a member of the STEP special interest group on mental capacity. Marriott often acts as a trustee, executor, deputy, attorney and charitable trustee for many well-known clients. Ashford concentrates on deputyship matters, and other issues such as statutory will applications. Ashford deals with complex capacity issues, in addition to acting as a professional deputy on welfare, property and financial affairs.

Practice head(s):

Suzanne Marriott; Sally Ashford

Other key lawyers:

Oliver Auld; Robyn Hack


‘This firm is highly experienced in this area. There are few individuals with more expertise in COP work than Suzanne Marriott’.

‘The team really know their way around the practice area. They have a lot of experience in the area and this allows them to act with great calmness and efficiency, with a strategic eye at all times’.

‘Suzanne Marriott is without peer in Court of Protection work. She is the first port of call both for HNW litigants seeking representation and parties seeking an independent professional deputy in such cases’.

Oliver Auld, having learnt from the likes of Suzanne Marriott, has already carved out his own reputation as a leading practitioner in this area.’

‘The Court of Protection practice at CRS LLP are a pleasure to work alongside. What makes this team unique is the huge depth of knowledge that they bring to each client’s matter, because the firm covers such a range of legal sectors’.

‘In addition to their excellent work for high net worth clients, their team has a truly impressive commitment to meaningful pro-bono work and it has been a pleasure to partner with them to deliver legal training to the charitable sector’.

‘Sally Ashford and her colleague Robyn Hack stand out for their dedication, enthusiasm and skilled approach to resolving the many tricky aspects of their vulnerable clients’ cases. They are a pleasure to work with – extremely organised and always pertinent’.

‘Sally Ashford’s approach not only demonstrates her skill and experience, but also her human nature. She goes “above and beyond”’.

Clarke Willmott LLP

Clarke Willmott LLP has ‘a fantastic Court of Protection team which has genuine expertise, strength in depth, and can cover contentious and non-contentious work’. It has the benefit of two panel deputies, Anthony Fairweather and Anne Minihane . Fairweather has been appointed as deputy for over 220 people, and specialises in the management of high-value personal injury awards arising from complex catastrophic injury in clinical negligence cases. He also handles a range of cases with cross-border elements, and acts as an expert witness in personal injury litigation. Minihane acts as a deputy for those who have acquired brain injury, had a diagnosis of dementia, stroke or other learning difficulties, as well as those with psychiatric illnesses. In addition, she has a substantial practice in applications to the court of protection for the recognition and/or enforcement of foreign orders.

Practice head(s):

Anthony Fairweather

Other key lawyers:

Anne Minihane; Bonita Walters; Michelle Manley; Victoria Day


‘Anne Minihane has exceptional knowledge in her field and is able to provide in depth information concerning Court of Protection matters and also LPAs’.

‘They are extremely thorough and knowledgeable. They address issues immediately. They know their clients and their families well and always work to improve lives and to secure the best possible solution for each client’. 

‘Personalised attention given with expertise and compassion. Anne Minihane is dedicated to her clients and prepared to go the extra mile in seeking the best outcomes for them’.

‘Anthony Fairweather and Victoria Day are good. I feel we have a great relationship with them. Always there for us’.

‘Anthony Fairweather is one of a kind. He is very down to earth, very honest and extremely supportive to the family too. He listens well without being judgmental’.

‘Good, strong professional deputy offering. Anne Minehane and Michelle Manley excellent with clients at all stages. Anne Minihane is calm and professional, and Michelle is an unsung hero of the team’.

‘The Deputy Anthony Fairweather is one of the most professional and caring individuals I have met in my time within the world of the court of protection. He demonstrates a great knowledge surrounding each of the people who he holds Deputyships for. Anthony has a great team which supports him, in particular Michelle Manley’.

‘Bonita Walters is a superb lawyer who gets great results. Clients including Anne Minihane are fantastically knowledgeable and a delight to deal with’.

DAC Beachcroft LLP

DAC Beachcroft LLP has a large and specialist team, which advises many health and social care commissioners, the NHS, as well as independent health and social care providers. The team is recognised for its skill at advising on the complex legal framework covering mental capacity, mental health and deprivation of liberty. It regularly advises on disputes around mental capacity, best interests, and serious medical treatment. Practice head, Paul McGough is a known name for his work on difficult cases necessitating serious medical treatment, and multi-agency safeguarding issues. Gill Weatherill has a broad practice. She frequently represents providers in high profile court of protection cases, as well as where there are other issues relating to clinical governance and patient safety.

Practice head(s):

Paul McGough

Other key lawyers:

Gill Weatherill; Jemma Gilson; Matt Nichols; Pardeep Biring


‘The whole team are responsive and so knowledgeable around the legal and regulatory aspects. We don’t really use other firms for clinical legal advice and the DACB team can always provide what is needed’. 

‘I think it is their responsiveness. There is no query that they cannot answer. If the person we contact doesn’t know then one of the widely experienced team will be able to help’.

‘Gill Weatherill is the partner we contact in relation to regulatory and legal issues such as CoP; no question of challenge is too much for Gill and her whole team have such a broad range of knowledge and experience’.

Key clients

Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust

Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

York Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust

NHS West Yorkshire Integrated Care Board

NHS South Yorkshire Integrated Care Board

Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

Barnsley Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust

Airedale NHS Foundation Trust

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust

Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Harrogate NHS Foundation Trust


Doncaster and Bassetlaw Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Sheffield Children’s Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

NHS Commissioning Board (NHS England)

Babylon Healthcare Services

City Health Care Partnership CIC

Health Research Authority

Chesterfield Royal Hospital NHS Foundation Trust


NHS Resolution (Lots 1, 2)

North of England Commercial Procurement Collaborative (CPC)

NHS Shared Business Services (SBS)

Crown Commercial Services


NHS Digital

Work highlights

  • Jointly advised and represented two NHS Trusts in Court of Protection proceedings concerning the obstetric care and treatment of a patient suffering from paranoid schizophrenia.
  • Advising and representing an NHS Trust in relation to care proceedings concerning a child with a history of challenging behaviour and self-harm and her ongoing detention in hospital.
  • Advising an acute hospital trust on the need for serious medical treatment of an adult who was assessed as not having capacity to make a decision in relation to which surgical treatment was in her best interests.

Enable Law

‘The team at Enable Law is highly specialist and able to work on complex cases.' The lawyers are ’available, approachable and knowledgeable’. The ‘hugely innovative' Stacey Bryant heads the practice, which supports clients on all aspects of their court of protection applications, hearings and orders. Areas of expertise include ruling on whether someone is able to make their own decisions, supporting on decisions relating to lasting powers of attorney, and dealing with disputes over the decisions made by an attorney or deputy. The group also offers a growing specialism in elder law, brain injury work and trusts involving incapacitated individuals. Other strengths lie in areas such as statutory wills and advising on issues of physical and financial abuse. Alison McClure and Tim Bennett are well-regarded.

Practice head(s):

Stacey Bryant

Other key lawyers:

Asha Beswetherick; Tim Bennett; Alison McClure


‘The team is large and specialist and is a leading practice in the south of England. There are not many teams that compare. Stacey Bryant and Asha Beswetherick stand out for their knowledge and for how personable they both are. They are creative and decisive’.

‘I can reach Tim Bennett by phone or e-mail and get a quick response. I am made to feel like I am part of the team. Every piece of correspondence is friendly and I always feel he listens to what I have to say or my view’. 

‘Asha Beswetherick is an excellent practitioner. Her ability to build rapport and provide a first-class service makes her stand out in her field. Stacey Bryant is extremely knowledgeable and helpful. I am comforted in the knowledge that referrals made to both Stacey and Asha will be dealt with effectively and efficiently’.

‘The COP team in Southampton make a real difference to people who lack mental capacity enabling them to live their lives to the full and help to protect their rights and interests. Alison McClure is an exceptional lawyer who delivers consistently and leads her team by example’.

‘The solicitors are personable, extremely helpful, friendly and they are prompt to reply and get things done! Tim Bennett is possibly the best solicitor and financial deputy we’ve had. He is so up to date with everything concerning our son. He is always helpful; nothing is too much trouble’.

‘Stacey Bryant is an outstanding professional, that demonstrates leadership and excellent professional knowledge at many levels whilst able to communicate effectively and be personable. Ashsa Beswetherick is an excellent member of Stacey’s team’.

‘Stacey Bryant- despite heading up a team, she makes herself available for client matters at short notice, which is a huge plus when dealing with evolving situations. She really understands the broader picture and works collaboratively with other professionals’.

‘Asha Beswetherick really gets to know her clients, their families and the carers supporting them, so that she can use her role as deputy to help them achieve their goals and benefit from improved quality of life’.

Hill Dickinson LLP

The ‘strong’ team at Hill Dickinson LLP 'is extremely experienced in COP matters and has real strength in the depth of knowledge and a number of people of real calibre’. It is a trusted advisor to private sector organisations, as well as NHS bodies. It continues to handle a variety of complex matters under the Mental Capacity Act, the Mental Health Act and the Children Acts, as well as other issues such as human rights and equality matters.  With Kiran Bhogal; Sharon Thomas and Paul Allerston at the helm of this national practice, it continues to receive a steady flow of instructions on various high-profile matters from NHS England, the ICBs and acute trusts. London-based Bhogal regularly advises clients on judicial review challenges and has represented parties in a number of significant public inquiries.

Practice head(s):

Kiran Bhogal; Sharon Thomas; Paul Allerston

Other key lawyers:

Amy Clarke; Louise Wilson; Rachel Watkinson; Rachel Kelly-Brandreth; Ben Troke; Emma Pollard


‘The Team is extremely experienced in CoP matters and has real strength in the depth of knowledge and number of people of real calibre who are there. Amy Clarke is very experienced and first rate. She knows the market well. She engages well with her healthcare clients’.

‘The team’s knowledge of the subject matter is excellent and I always have complete confidence that the advice provided is reliable’.

‘The team have supported in a number of complex court of protection matters with great success resulting in positive outcomes for the person and ultimately reputationally for the Trust’.

Key clients

Greater Manchester ICB

Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust

Lancashire and South Cumbria ICB

Cheshire & Merseyside ICB

Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust

Cheshire & Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Guy’s and St Thomas’s NHS Foundation Trust

King’s College NHS Foundation Trust

Barts Health NHS Trust

Homerton Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

Royal Free London Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Foundation Trust

Surrey Heartlands ICB

North Central London ICB

North East London ICB

Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Manchester City Council (Children’s Team)

Work highlights

  • Acting for King’s College NHS Foundation Trust in a matter responding to the application by Mr Haastrup to lift the Reporting Restrictions Order prohibiting the medics involved in his son’s care and treatment to be named which was heard by the Court of Appeal in November 2022.

Hugh James

Tom Hall now heads the department at Hugh James. Hall joined the firm from Thomson Snell & Passmore in September 2022 and brings with him a wealth of experience in complex deputyships involving other jurisdictions. Hall is also frequently instructed to act as an expert witness on Court of Protection and deputyship costs. The team has ‘great knowledge and expertise, but at the same time is down to earth and makes everything easy to understand for clients.'  Andrew Harding is another significant member of the department. Harding is vastly experienced in assisting individuals with an acquired brain injury as well as their families. Senior associate Charlotte Fletcher is lauded for her work in property and financial affairs deputyships.

Practice head(s):

Tom Hall

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Harding; Charlotte Fletcher; Kate Coles; Joy Davies


‘They provide depth and breadth of resources as Professional Deputies. Whilst providing services they are always willing to listen to the client, our ideas and questions, as well as providing solutions themselves. They have supported us with guidance, structure, and sound feedback’.

‘Andrew Harding has provided a solid sounding board providing clear overviews of needs, opportunities and available solutions. Charlotte Fletcher is accommodating, helpful and available for day-to-day matters’.

‘They are a great team. They are all easy to get hold of. Personally, I feel they have made life so much easier for my husband. There is always someone from the team at hand to chat to when needed.’

‘Kate Coles and Charlotte Fletcher have been brilliant at keeping me updated when required answering any questions I have in layman’s terms so I can understand’.

‘Joy Davies is a great help to us. Always on hand to answer any query and happy to talk through in a clear manner on our level’.

‘Tom Hall is both compassionate and professional, a real joy to work with. His understanding of the clients he works with and the other professionals involved makes working together so much easier’.

‘I’ve only worked with Tom Hall, who now heads the team, but he brings something positive to a firm that is already focussed on the relationship with professionals as well as clients and their families’.

‘The CoP team at Hugh James work hard at building individual relationships with clients and get to know each client’s individual circumstances and wishes. A number of my clients are with the CoP team at Hugh James and are all very happy with the service’.

JE Bennett Law

At JE Bennett Law, Jane Bennettas the leader of the firm, has clearly set a very high standard of company ethos and values, which filters down the spine of staff.’ It receives many plaudits for is ‘client-centred’ approach to clients who are rendered physically/mentally vulnerable either by catastrophic accident or clinical negligence injuries. It also covers elderly client-related dementia/illnesses, and mental health disorders. Bennett and new arrival to the team, Ian Macara, are both OPG national deputies. Bennett continues to act as a professional trustee in a growing number of personal injury trust cases, and her expert witness practice continues to grow. Richard Shearing and Lorna Halfpenny-Beeby are both highly regarded.

Practice head(s):

Jane Bennett

Other key lawyers:

Lorna Halfpenny-Beeby; Ian Macara; Richard Shearing; Jemma Cahan


‘JE Bennett Law, for all the years I have worked with them, continue to be client focused and uphold the highest levels of professionalism within this area of specialty. All associate and employees I liaise with are personable, knowledgeable and respond to any queries in a timely manner’.

‘Lorna Halfpenny-Beeby is passionate and enthusiastic about her clients. She is fantastic at advocating for them and gives a sense she really gets to know and understand what their bespoke needs are. Lorna is very approachable and always a delight to talk with’.

‘Jane Bennett is an experienced Court of Protection Deputy, who gives evidence on deputyship fees for both claimants and insurers. She is seen as a realistic witness rather than one who is polarised (and there are many of those). She is also straightforward to deal with and efficient’.

‘Jane Bennett herself is excellent but she is ably supported by her team and in particular Jemma Cahan has been impressive’.

‘I have had experience of working with Ian Macara and supporting with his clients. I have always found Ian to be extremely caring about his clients and passionate about ensuring their wishes are met and they are listened to’.

‘Jane Bennett is just excellent. Whether acting as a Deputy or a litigator or both, she is helpful, well prepared, friendly and approachable to the client and fellow professionals alike’.

‘Ian Macara is a highly experienced panel deputy, in addition to possessing experience in other related private client Court of Protection work, such as attorney disputes. Ian manages his cases attentively and proactively’.

‘Ian Macara and Richard Shearing are great to work with and always put their clients’ needs at the forefront of their work’.

Key clients



Clyde & Co


DAC Beachcroft

CL Medilaw

Dutton Gregory

TG Baynes

Work highlights

  • Assisted the Court of Protection and the Criminal Court with investigating and collating evidence of financial abuse against its client MA which was pivotal in the criminal case.
  • Acted as a panel deputy for AB and represented the client in family proceedings regarding housing and financial support, ultimately reaching agreement in its client’s best interests.
  • Appointed as panel deputy for MM who at the time lacked capacity, was homeless and was subject to a freezing injunction. It was able to lift the injunction and continue to support its client on financial and property affairs.

Kingsley Napley LLP

Kingsley Napley LLPhas a hugely experienced Court of Protection team, which complements its contentious trusts and probate team admirably’. The team, which is led by Simon Hardy primarily focuses on property and affairs matters. Its expertise also now covers health and welfare matters, including decisions regarding care arrangements, personal welfare deputyships and public funding for care. It has a caseload of over 120 regular deputyships and trusteeships. The majority of its clients lack capacity due to a catastrophic brain injury. It has also expanded into the elderly client market through Anita Gill’s role as a court of protection approved panel deputy. The team excels in contentious Court of Protection work too, particularly where there are cases involving serious allegations of fraud and financial abuse. Ryan Mowat is adept at handling these cases. Senior associate Jemma Garside is well regarded.

Practice head(s):

Simon Hardy

Other key lawyers:

Anita Gill; Ryan Mowat; Jemma Garside


‘Ryan Mowat is an absolutely stand-out individual and his versatility in being able to adapt to the demands of various sorts of litigation is impressive. He leads by example and has the support of a keen, bright and incredibly dedicated team’.

‘The Court of Protection team brings a wealth of experience to cases with a mixed property and affairs and health and welfare aspect. In particular, the team’s experience in managing deputyships and associated care issues is particularly impressive’.

‘Jemma Garside is genuine Court of Protection specialist with in-depth knowledge of all manner of property and affairs and health and welfare applications and is very good at client management’.

‘This is a team which is clearly really passionate about protecting the interests of their clients. Simon Hardy is a very sensible Deputy, with his clients’ best interests at heart’.

‘Anita Gill is understanding, kind and pragmatic. Her ability to handle complex family dynamics is second to none and she is a credit to her firm, profession and the Court of Protection’.

‘Simon Hardy is very capable and is very client focused. He is very understanding and respects and empowers clients whenever possible. Simon is very client focused and understands the need to keep costs down whenever possible. He nevertheless will endeavour to go the extra mile’.

‘Ryan Mowat is a brilliant litigator. He is completely unflappable, has a mastery of tactics and strategy, and has an eye for the most important point in a case. Clients love him’.

‘Anita Gill has vast experience, is fastidious and hard-working and provides confidence to clients. First rate’.

Miles & Partners LLP

The ‘committed, efficient and knowledgeable’ team at Miles & Partners LLP is jointly led by Rachel Turner and Floyd Porter . The specialist team regularly works on cases where there are issues of capacity, and concerns over the best interests of vulnerable adults who are unable to make fundamental health and welfare decisions themselves. It is frequently instructed by the Official Solicitor, Relevant Person’s Representatives and relatives to work on s21A cases to challenge deprivations of liberty. In addition, it is sometimes instructed to act on serious medical treatment cases. Andrew Bowmer has been promoted to the partnership and his expertise spans court of protection, housing and community care law.

Practice head(s):

Rachel Turner; Floyd Porter

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Bowmer; Kaileigh Hazeldine


‘Miles & Partners remains a leading firm both in relation to legal aid work and private practice. They have retained their strong ethos in relation to representing vulnerable clients, whilst becoming a City name for private clients’.

‘Floyd Porter is an outstanding Court of Protection solicitor with a strong sense of justice as well as a pragmatic approach’.

‘Andrew Bowmer is an excellent, experienced CoP solicitor. Kaileigh Hazeldine is personable, approachable solicitor, good client manner‘.

‘Committed, efficient, knowledgeable and a pleasure to work with. Rachel Turner continues to impress as a leading expert in mental health and mental capacity law. Always thoughtful with great attention to detail’.

‘Floyd Porter is excellent. He has a calm, reassuring manner that puts the client at ease in what are often very emotional circumstances. He is unflappable.’

‘Patient, diligent, committed lawyers who give clients realistic advice’.

‘Floyd Porter is an excellent practitioner who brings a wealth of expertise and experience to each case. He is adept at maintaining strategic oversight, deals with cases thoroughly and pragmatically, and represents P robustly. He is very personable and has a great way in communicating with P to ensure their voice is heard’.

‘Andrew Bowmer is a very competent lawyer with a strong knowledge of law but also common sense. He is able to deal with very challenging protected parties as well as challenging cases. His team are clearly being trained well and are very well managed’.

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP has ‘one of the largest COP teams in the country, led by the excellent Daniel Toop’. The team receives plaudits for creating ‘very strong bonds with clients and families who trust their legal judgement’. The practice continues to be busy acting as a professional deputy or trustee for individuals in receipt of an award due to a personal injury or clinical negligence claim. Other significant work includes advising on DOLS and other welfare matters; cross-jurisdictional applications, and on applications for attorneys to make gifts for inheritance tax purposes. Julie Burton is a known name in the market. Burton regularly acts as a professional deputy for adult and children clients with complex brain injuries. These injuries have occurred as a result of personal injuries. Managing associate Grace Serwanga is another key contact.

Practice head(s):

Daniel Toop

Other key lawyers:

Julie Burton; Grace Serwanga; James Berry; Rachel Taylor


‘Daniel Toop is very forward-thinking practitioner with a keen eye for detail. Very calm and methodical in his approach when dealing with more complex matters. Julie Burton is a very experienced CoP practitioner. She has extensive skill and knowledge in this area of law’.

‘Daniel Toop is calm and reflective with a sharp legal mind and a pragmatic approach. Julie Burton is a leading practitioner in the field who wields gravitas when needed. Rachel Taylor is a very capable solicitor. Grace Serwanga is a positive addition to the growing team’.

‘The team are a pleasure to deal with. They are communicative, organised and very responsive. James Berry is very motivated and friendly’.

‘Rachel Taylor is approachable, personable, and professional. She makes herself available at short notice even on her non-working day, if necessary. She is very responsive to queries and her advice on matters is always clear’.

‘Daniel Toop has been brilliant, always explaining things. Good advice when asked, very efficient and understanding. Julie Burton has been brilliant too. I know we are in good hands with Julie Burton and Daniel Toop. Excellent service’.

‘Julie Burton is part of a formidable team along with fellow partner Daniel Toop ably backed up by senior associates Rachel Taylor, James Berry and Grace Serwanga. You will be hard pressed to find a more knowledgeable team of partners and senior associates in this practice area’.

Penningtons LLP is a large firm with particular expertise in Court of Protection work. They have an excellent team, with real strength in depth which makes them an obvious choice for high value settlements. They are flexible in their approach and determined to secure the best quality of life for the clients that they support’.

‘They are a very friendly yet professional team and are keen to ensure everything they do is centred fully around the client and in their best interests’.

Rothley Law

Rothley Law has a large and dedicated property and affairs team. Charlotte Dunn, who is based at the office in Milton Keynes, is a panel deputy and a full member of STEP. Birmingham-based Lucy Taylor often acts as professional deputy in property and affairs matters. Principal associate Rebecca Bristow has a special interest in children and young adults who have suffered catastrophic brain injuries.

Practice head(s):

Lucy Taylor; Charlotte Dunn

Other key lawyers:

Rebecca Bristow; Andriy Buniak; Lauren Miner


‘The whole team work well together. Each member seems well informed and available for support when required.’

‘Lucy Taylor and Andriy Buniak are both very personable. They have a great deal of empathy in varying situations. They have both taken the time to fully get to know us as a family’.

‘I found the team responsive and accessible. They also are happy to offer support and be part of the daily decision-making process as needed’.

Russell-Cooke LLP

Russell-Cooke LLP advises on a wide array of contentious and non-contentious matters. It regularly provides specialist advice on cross-border issues, particularly those with a French element them. Gareth Ledsham heads the contentious court of protection team. Ledsham is particularly recognised for his work on matters involving overseas assets. He advises on the full range of contested mental capacity issues regarding property and financial affairs. Rita Bhargava leads the non-contentious capacity and court of protection offering. Bhargava frequently helps with the management of financial affairs for vulnerable clients and advises on personal injury trusts for those with acquired injuries.

Practice head(s):

Gareth Ledsham; Rita Bhargava


‘The team acted with compassion and took the time to really understand the complex family situation. This made us feel at ease and allowed the team to build a good relationship with us’.

‘Gareth Ledsham was very knowledgeable and made us feel in good hands. He distilled a complex family situation down and provided good advice and made us feel in control’.

‘I think this team in particular has specialist Court of Protection knowledge. They really know their stuff. Rita Bhargava is empathetic and hard-working with a very pragmatic and sensible approach’.

‘This team is excellent. They have market leading experience and no fuss. Gareth Ledsham leads with experience and authority’.

‘Russell-Cooke LLP has an expert Court of Protection department that has a strong international desk. This allows cross-border expertise’.

‘What makes Gareth Ledsham different is that he has great clarity of thought as well as a sharp mind. He also volunteers his time with the STEP (Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners) Global Steering Committee for the Mental Capacity Special Interest Group where he provides thought-leadership and moderates panels’.  

‘Rita Bhargava is head of the capacity and court of protection team at Russell-Cooke. They are uniquely placed to deal with both contentious and non-contentious capacity issues and also have a cross border team’.

‘Rita Bhargava is one of those unique lawyers who is very experienced in her field yet is also compassionate and caring. Her commitment to her clients is inspiring. She gives clear, reasoned advice and always goes above and beyond for her clients. She genuinely wants to help people’.

Wrigleys Solicitors LLP

The highly professional, knowledgeable and responsive’ team at Wrigleys Solicitors LLP is co-led by Jane Netting and Lisa Eato. This specialist team is well-regarded for its court of protection work, as well as for its experience in the management of personal injury funds. It receives a steady stream of instructions in all aspects of property and financial affairs, and is skilled at providing specialist advice on community care. Its property team deals with property purchases and disability adaptations. Of note too, is the fact that it has been appointed to the Office of the Public Guardian of Deputies since June 2015. In addition, various members of the team often act as expert witnesses. Charlotte Dyson  frequently acts as a professional litigation friend in personal injury proceedings.

Practice head(s):

Jane Netting; Lisa Eato

Other key lawyers:

Charlotte Dyson


‘The Team and particularly Jane Netting are impressively proactive, dealing with urgent matters at very short notice and collating vast amounts of information to make successful statutory Will applications where life expectancy is days. They have a wide breath of knowledge in both the contentious and non contentious discipline of Court of Protection work’.

‘Jane Netting particularly is very able in statutory will applications and acting as litigation friend for minor and incapable parties. The Team has a notable reputation and kudos putting the client at the heart of their decision making under the Mental Capacity Act’.

‘Jane Netting is dedicated to her clients, focused on best interest decision making, putting her clients at the forefront of that decision making, which is informed by her experience, legal knowledge, and respect for her clients’ past and present expressed wishes and feelings’. 

‘Fab team very knowledgeable, helpful and efficient, Charlotte Dyson’.

‘Very good value for money with experienced solicitors. Charlotte Dyson is very approachable and great with clients’.

‘My understanding is that this is a team with a long-standing strong reputation for Court of Protection work, with many years of experience and knowledge’.

‘Jane Netting is (in my view) a very knowledgeable and experienced Court of Protection practitioner. She is easy to work with and generally seems to take a collaborative approach to Court of Protection proceedings where this is productive’.

‘Charlotte Dyson stands out in her willingness to assist protected parties. She is always willing to go the extra mile for her clients and is a great support to the litigation team’.

Ashtons Legal

At Ashtons Legal, Adrian Mundell heads the practice which specialises in acting for clients who have suffered a catastrophic acquired or birth-related brain injury. These clients have received a damages award, or their claim is ongoing. The team then acts as their professional deputy. The practice also has a number of cases where it is supporting family members who are acting as lay deputies. Around 10% of its work is for elderly clients and those with mental health problems.

Practice head(s):

Adrian Mundell

Other key lawyers:

Debbie Holmes; Paul Humphries


‘Very experienced and efficient Court of Protection team. A joy to work with. They are approachable, responsive and make even complex matters easy for their clients to understand’.

‘Also provide excellent litigation support in civil matters where they are deputy as they understand this side of the industry and how this interconnects with their work’.

‘Paul Humphries is an excellent lawyer. Very easy to talk to, liked by clients who feel safe in his hands. Straight talking snf provides realistic advice regarding deputyship matters’.

‘Informality makes the firm more approachable to clients. Adrian Mundell and Debbie Holmes are good’.

Work highlights

  • Acting in over 120 Professional Deputyships with responsibility for managing client assets valued at around £250m.
  • Acting for a minor who suffers from cerebral palsy and now lives with her family in a property that was purchased and adapted to meet her needs.
  • Acting as Deputy for a 30-year-old man whose accident at work claim had settled for £1.8m.

Attwaters Jameson Hill Solicitors

At Attwaters Jameson Hill Solicitors, Lesley-Ann Mayhewis exceptional at what she does.’ ‘She is informative, inciteful and provides a very nurturing approach to clients’. The group routinely acts as professional deputies in cases involving multi-million-pound damages awards for claimants of medical negligence. It also acts as professional deputies for vulnerable elderly people.

Practice head(s):

Lesley-Ann Mayhew


‘Really warm and friendly approach. Lesley-Ann Mayhew is communicative, supportive, and very pleasant to work with’.

‘The team are responsive and easily contactable’.

‘Lesley-Ann Mayhew is interested in her client’s welfare, takes time to understand the issues at hand and provides the level of support that is required, adapting to different situations as needed’.

Bevan Brittan LLP

Bevan Brittan LLP is best known for its work in supporting public and independent sector health and social care organisations, both those which provide the care and those which fund it. Clients include the NHS, local authorities, education providers, housing associations and charities. Tim Hodgetts, Simon Lindsay and Hannah Taylor are at the helm of the department, which has a first-rate reputation for its work nationally. Areas of expertise include advising on mental capacity and mental health, safeguarding issues, and deprivation of liberty matters.

Practice head(s):

Tim Hodgetts; Simon Lindsay; Hannah Taylor

Other key lawyers:

Julia Jones; Ruth Atkinson-Wilks


‘Bevan Brittan have a collection of great lawyers with fantastic administrative back up when you need it. You know all the nitty-gritty – paperwork, bundles, and applications will be dealt with and the clients will be well-served’.

‘Hannah Taylor is a class act. Ferociously committed, hugely insightful and passionate about what she does. Simon Lindsay is a safe pair of hands: cool in a crisis, he’s seen it all. Julia Jones is experienced, professional, calm and smart’.

‘Hannah Taylor is excellent and is highly recommended particularly for medical and welfare cases’.

‘Just an extremely high level of competence and attention to detail. The word gets bandied about, but they are really experts in their fields and are able to advise quickly and extremely accurately on short notice. Always very impressive’.

‘Hannah Taylor is a real star. She has an unrivalled work ethic and focus, and is always on top of her brief. I’ve seen her give truly exceptional advice on essentially no notice in emergency cases. She knows exactly what needs to be done and what the court will be looking for’.

‘Responsive, reassuring and supportive of the staff.’

‘Ruth Atkinson-Wilks is particularly good in her case management style and working with various parties. She always draws on her experience from similar cases she has worked on and comes up with pragmatic approaches/solutions to some difficult situations’.

Key clients

South London and Maudsley Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust

South West London and St George’s Mental Health NHS Trust

NHS Hampshire and Isle of Wight ICB

University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust

Somerset NHS Foundation Trust

West London NHS Foundation Trust

Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust


Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust

Avon & Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust

NHS Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire ICB

University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust

Burke Niazi Solicitors & Advocates

At Burke Niazi Solicitors & Advocates, under the joint leadership of Keith Clarke and Michael Barrett, the team is lauded for its representation of the most vulnerable members of society. It has developed from the firm’s key specialism in mental health, community care and housing. Both Clarke and Barrett are accredited legal representatives. The practice has particular expertise in welfare matters and is also regularly instructed by the Official Solicitor.

Practice head(s):

Keith Clarke; Michael Barrett

Other key lawyers:

Michael Barrett; Nicola Peacock


‘This is a firm with a strong and consistent ethical foundation. They are passionate about the work that they do and work tirelessly for social justice’.

‘They offer a full service across mental capacity law and mental health law and have some exceptionally interesting cases’.

‘The team regularly demonstrate a thorough and professional approach to the cases I have with them and an impressive knowledge of the Mental Capacity Act 2005.  They always provide clear and comprehensive advice in a timely fashion’.

Capsticks LLP

Francis Lyons leads the team at Capsticks LLP, which has a ‘comprehensive, in-depth understanding of the NHS organisations they work for across the whole legal spectrum, which permeates through into work they do in the specific Court of Protection arena’. It has considerable expertise in advising on the interaction between the Mental Health Act, the Mental Capacity Act, and the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards for its large number of NHS and private sector clients. Amy Holden is another key figure.

Practice head(s):

Francis Lyons

Other key lawyers:

Grace Plaxton; Nadine Mansell; Anita Rao; Holly Bridden; Amy Holden; Ellie Ward; Munpreet Hundle


‘Francis Lyons is charming, unflappable and a pleasure to work with. One of the best out there for complex serious medical treatment cases Grace Plaxton. Brilliant under pressure, extremely responsive, makes the most stressful situations manageable through her calm demeanour’.

‘Francis Lyons is a superb CoP partner, knows everything about everything. Really thorough knowledge of health legislation in particular and the complete service to the health sector in terms of Court of Protection proceedings.’

‘The team at Capsticks has a great reputation for CoP welfare work. Anita Rao stands out as exceptionally dedicated to progressing cases swiftly and working collaboratively with opponents to do so’.

‘Francis Lyons has made himself available to assist with urgent queries and in the event that he doesn’t have capacity to assist, he has provided me with the contact details for a colleague who is readily available to provide advice’.

‘They have an accessible, responsive and knowledgeable team. The experience they have of working with NHS bodies translates seamlessly into an efficient yet empathetic approach to the challenging cases in this area of practice’.

‘Ellie Ward is outstanding. I particularly enjoy working with her as her judgment is impeccable. The considered and comprehensive advice which she provides to clients is faultless’.

‘Holly Bridden is top-notch, completely calm in all situations, and has great client-handling skills. Ellie Ward is a dream to work with, providing a perfect service to her clients. Munpreet Hundle is an absolute star and works with great effectiveness and with a deep understanding of the sector’.

‘Francis Lyons is the consistent figure and he is always approachable and responsive’.

Key clients

NHS Kent & Medway Integrated Care Board

NHS South West London Integrated Care Board

NHS South East London Integrated Care Board

North Middlesex University Hospitals NHS Trust

Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust

London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust

NHS Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Integrated Care Board

NHS North West London Integrated Care Board

Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust

Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust

Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Northern Lincolnshire and Goole Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Work highlights

  • Representing all Integrated Commissioning Boards in Greater London in relation to challenges to deprivations of liberty and packages of care in the Court of Protection.
  • Supporting professionals of acute hospital and mental health service providers with urgent medical treatment, with its expert knowledge of the overlap between the Mental Health Act and Mental Capacity Act.
  • Assisting COPDOL11 with providing general services to many NHS Integrated Care Boards nationally to enable them to apply for judicial authorisations of deprivations of liberty for health funded patients in the community.

Duncan Lewis Solicitors

Gillian Alysia de Freitas and Angela Sandhal co-lead the department at Duncan Lewis Solicitors, which frequently represents vulnerable clients and family members in disputes pertaining to mental capacity and best interest welfare decisions. These cases mostly relate to residence, contact, care and medical treatment. The practice is now also regularly receiving instructions to advise trust corporations and other firms of solicitors on health and social care matters.

Practice head(s):

Gillian Alysia de Freitas; Angela Sandhal

Other key lawyers:

Fernanda Stefani


‘Well established Court of Protection team that balances sensible practical advice with a thorough understanding of the jurisdiction’.

‘Angela Sandhal is able to be robust in her approach whilst being sensitive to client needs’.

‘The team is incredibly professional, friendly, reliable and always willing to offer fantastic advice on individual cases. I have found that Duncan Lewis have been incredibly responsive’. 

‘The communication styles, compassion and understanding of an individual’s needs, views and wishes have always been their priority’.

‘Duncan Lewis have a strong team of Court of Protection lawyers who understand the subject well, including the interaction with public law, which is a distinct advantage in cases that also require judicial review’.

‘Their cases are always well prepared, and it is evident that care is taken to obtain the views of the protected party, even by visiting their home if necessary’.

‘The team is small and therefore knows each other’s strengths and expertise. When I am instructed by this firm I know that there is not just one solicitor dealing with a matter, the whole team assists’.

‘Angela Sandhal is a safe pair of hands for Court of Protection matters involving particularly vulnerable individuals’.

Work highlights

  • Represented RC in his s21A and s16 challenge against his placement in a care home.
  • Represented MM in his s21A challenge against his placement in a care home.
  • Represented GB in his s21A challenge against his placement in a care home. Ultimately, her client’s DOLS was rescinded by the court and GB was able to decide where he should live.

Edwards Duthie Shamash

At the helm at Edwards Duthie Shamash is the ‘brilliantMelissa Law who is a ‘highly experienced Court of Protection practitioner, who is meticulous in her case preparation, skillful in maintaining the strategic oversight, and tenacious in securing the best possible outcome for P’. The agile team continues to be instructed in complex health and welfare cases, as well as increasingly being instructed to act as agent for the Official Solicitor in serious medical treatment cases. Laura Mannering is another name to note.

Practice head(s):

Melissa Law

Other key lawyers:

Laura Mannering; Kris Jackson; Sarah Lerner


‘The team is led by Melissa Law. I have worked most closely with Laura Mannering and Kris Jackson, both of whom are excellent. They have a team with some very experienced COP practitioners’.

‘Kris Jackson has excellent judgment. Laura Mannering is extremely experienced. She is a fantastic lawyer, with a good eye for the points that should be taken.’

‘Edwards Duthie have an excellent Court of Protection team. They are dedicated, hard-working and knowledgeable. Melissa Law is very good. She has clear analytical approach which makes her a pleasure to work with’.

Key clients

Office of the Official Solicitor


Advocacy for all


Anna Bond heads the department at Fieldfisher, which is praised for being ’accessible and knowledgeable’.  The group is ‘very capable of managing complicated legal and relational situations in high value brain injury cases’.  It is a specialist team with a focus on high-value, complex property and affairs deputyships for adults and children across the country. These clients have suffered life-changing catastrophic injuries as a result of serious accidents or birth trauma. On  a capitalised basis, it is currently managing in excess of £350m of client funds and other assets. Robin Tubbs is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Anna Bond

Other key lawyers:

Robin Tubbs; Kirstie Chambers


‘Great people with full knowledge about what they are doing. Robin Tubbs, truly amazing lawyer and goes out of his way to help his clients as much as possible. Anna Bond, incredibly knowledgeable and helpful in all aspects’.

‘The people are of first class quality – very professional with vast experience. Totally responsive and excellent communicators.’

‘They are professional and with the human touch. Kirstie Chambers very friendly and always engaging with us when we have a query. Giving us different options with pros and cons and explaining in a manner that we can understand clearly’.

‘Anna Bond runs a fantastic deputy department and I highly recommend her. She has a fantastic way of dealing with the problems that arise in respect of deputyship’.

‘The Deputyship Team is totally client focused. Kirstie Chambers – really cares about her clients’.

‘Anna Bond is exceptionally knowledgeable and builds excellent relationships with clients in the most challenging of circumstances. She heads an extremely capable team of fee earners ; particular stand outs being Robin Tubb and Kirstie Chambers all of whom have excellent experience, kind dispositions and efficient working styles’.

‘The CoP team led by Anna Bond is one of the leading teams in this field. The service provided is excellent – the team members are responsive and pro-active. They are also patient, kind and practical’.

‘Anna Bond – so experienced, always provides sound advice and quickly if required. Also, an excellent communicator who is adept at explaining complex concepts to clients in plain English. Incredibly accessible’.

Gillhams Solicitors LLP

Under the joint leadership of Christopher Poxamatis and Shareen Tanvir, Gillhams Solicitors LLP currently manages 120 deputyship cases. Poxamatis, who is a panel deputy, frequently acts as a property and affairs deputy for many clients. Tanvir is experienced in dealing with a wide array of court of protection matters. She often acts for incapacitated clients through their litigation friend. In addition, she acts for family members who are involved in these proceedings, and her work covers matters relating to property and affairs as well as health and welfare.

Practice head(s):

Christopher Poxamatis; Shareen Tanvir


‘They are a great team, well resourced and collaborative in their approach to teamwork internally and externally with experts. Particularly given how little information they have about the vulnerable client at the start of any new Panel Deputy case, their knowledge of the client and the records that they build up to resolve the various issues are impressive’.

‘Chris Poxamatis is an inspiring head of the Court of Protection Team. He is committed to his team’s learning and development, to the benefit of their clients’. 

‘The team are professional friendly and helpful. Availability and efficiency’.

Hodge Jones & Allen

The versatile team at Hodge Jones & Allen specialises in property and affairs deputyships. It has considerable expertise in acting for clients with large damages awards for injury claims. Practice head, Christine Dyson, oversees the firm’s 40 professional deputyship and 40 professional personal injury trusts. Patrick Allen frequently acts as a deputy and trustee for many severely brain injured children who have received substantial damages.

Practice head(s):

Christine Dyson

Other key lawyers:

Patrick Allen


‘The team are strong, organised, consistent and fair’.

‘Christine Dyson is a fantastic to have as any part of the team. She is pragmatic and strong. Her decisions are always in the client’s best interests and she holds firm despite the behaviours of the difficult clients that we share’.

‘HJA have an excellent legal team in the private client department’.

‘Christine Dyson goes above and beyond for her clients. She is efficient, responsive and is very knowledgeable. She has a good team around her’.

‘Excellent communication Friendly Supportive’.


Hyphen Law

Christine Bunting and  Kelly Knight co-head the team at Hyphen Law, which is praised for providing a ‘highly personalised service. They are fully committed to their clients, often going above and beyond to meet their needs’. It is known for helping clients nationwide in receipt of substantial compensation awards as a result of severe and complex injuries. The group is skilled at helping these clients in the management of their property and affairs. In addition, it acts in various joint deputyships with lay deputies, and acts as professional trustees for personal injury trusts.

Practice head(s):

Christine Bunting; Kelly Knight

Other key lawyers:

Elizabeth Metcalfe


‘Christine Bunting and Kelly Knight are clearly very experienced and knowledgeable within their area of expertise, and this feeds through the remainder of the team. Both Christine and Kelly take a very practical approach to matters, and always available to discuss issues and explain the decisions they have reached and the reasoning for doing so’.

‘Christine Bunting and her team are, in my opinion technically very competent. They produce work within their fee and time estimates. They are pleasant to deal with, always willing to review and reconsider in the light of additional information. They are, in my experience, extremely responsive’.

‘Christine Bunting is one of the most competent COP experts I have dealt with’.


IBB Law has three Grade A fee earners – Jacqueline Almond, Russell Hallam and Elena Hall, and a Grade B fee earner, Michael Charalambous. In addition, Hallam is a member of the Office of the Public Guardian’s panel of professional deputies. It currently acts for approximately 100 clients. The team helps clients with acquired brain injuries, mental health issues, dementia, learning disabilities, alcohol and drug abuse.

Practice head(s):

Jacqueline Almond; Russell Hallam

Other key lawyers:

Michael Charalambous; Elena Hall


‘The Practice has an excellent knowledge base. Jacqueline Almond is fantastic. Her knowledge and expertise on Lasting Power of Attorney, Wills, Trusts is brilliant’.

Jacqueline’s presentation skills are excellent. Jacqueline’s presentation was brilliant. She explained such a difficult topic so clearly and concisely’.

‘The team is approachable, knowledgeable and empathetic. They work collaboratively with clients and their advisers which helps to bring good client focussed outcomes’.

‘Jacqueline Almond – has a comprehensive skill set which means I can be confident that my referred clients can be confident that they are receiving the most comprehensive advice’.


Leigh Day

Newly promoted partner Anna Moore, and Amy Chater (who joined the firm from Freeths LLP ), now co-head the department at Leigh Day. The ‘hardworking, sharp and insightful’ team covers the full range of matters including health and welfare matters, and property and financial affairs. The group receives regular referrals from the Official Solicitor in matters relating to deprivation of liberty, contact, residence, and other issues such as sexual relations.

Practice head(s):

Anna Moore; Amy Chater

Other key lawyers:

Sophie Wells; Sarah Westoby


‘They are very focused on trying to understand what is best for the client. The communication between parties and professionals is excellent and it is clear that the client’s needs are being addressed at all times. Amy Chater is fully engaged, responsive, and client focused.  She is a pleasure to work with.’

’Leigh Day have a team of human rights lawyers who are able to turn their hand to complex Court of Protection cases. This is helpful as it means that their team can do collateral civil claims and public law challenges’.

‘Sophie Wells is a stand out associate who is able to engage with the most vulnerable of clients’.

‘Leigh Day have a very good Court of Protection team working predominantly on welfare matters. The team are hard working, sharp and insightful. Anna Moore has a very strong reputation’. 

‘The solicitor that I rate most highly from Leigh Day is Sarah Westoby. She is extremely intelligent and dedicated to her clients’.

‘Amy Chater is an excellent practitioner driving this growing team forwards’.

‘Amy Chater is a very personable court of protection deputy, with wide ranging skills (wider than finance) to provide a holistic & deep duty of care to her clients’.

‘Very skilful practitioners, leaders in the litigation cases that most commercial firms would walk away from, huge social heart beating throughout the firm‘.

Work highlights

  • Acting in a significant case setting out the legal duties for children who should be taken into local authority care, due to be heard in Court of Appeal in April.
  • Acting for the mother in a case involving the withdrawal of medical treatment for her son, including persuading the court to allow the family to have one last Christmas together .
  • Acting in complex proceedings regarding whether AHK should receive a kidney transplant.

Mills & Reeve LLP

The large team at Mills & Reeve LLP has an impressive client base of acute, mental health and community trusts, as well as commissioning bodies and independent sector providers. It is skilled at advising clients on High Court inherent jurisdiction cases for children, and deprivation of liberty matters. It frequently deals with complex matters such as end of life, significant restrictions of movement and sexual relations matters. Jill Mason and Neil Ward are the heads of department.

Practice head(s):

Jill Mason; Neil Ward

Other key lawyers:

Ruth Minnis; Sarah Garrood; Samuel Lindsay; Kirstie Lennox


‘Mills and Reeve have great knowledge in respect of NHS providers be they commissioners or those providing treatments. Ruth Minnis is hyper efficient’.

‘Responsive, large enough so if someone is on leave, cases are still progressed. Manages several cases for us at a time. Able to summarise issues clearly. Sarah Garrood is particularly helpful’.

‘The team have always been supportive and extremely knowledgeable and have provided support and guidance way and above’.

‘Samuel Lindsay was always available for support and guidance. Samuel’s knowledge was outstanding. Samuel was always on hand to answer any questions or concerns’.

‘I have found Mills and Reeve’s Court of Protection team to be friendly, responsive, well-led and adaptive. The team respond quickly to queries and when needed dealt with urgent welfare matters diligently’.

‘The team are enthusiastic with a range of individuals with diverse knowledge and backgrounds that can provide advice across a wide range of welfare matters’.

‘Jill Mason and Neil Ward lead an incredible team by example, providing a direct and calm approach in complex and fraught circumstances. I have notably worked with Ms Lennox’.

‘Kirstie Lennox is an associate to watch. She has recently moved to Mills and Reeves. She has a good eye for detail, focuses on the issues, and is responsive to queries’.

Key clients

Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust

NHS Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Integrated Care Board

NHS Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Integrated Care Board

NHS Black Country Integrated Care Board

NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire Integrated Care Board

NHS Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust

South Warwickshire University NHS Foundation Trust

Black Country Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

NHS Norfolk and Waveney Integrated Care Board

Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust

NHS Coventry and Warwickshire Integrated Care Board

NHS Hertfordshire and West Essex Integrated Care Board

NHS Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes Integrated Care|Board

NHS Mid and South Essex Integrated Care Board

NHS Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin Integrated Care Board

NHS Birmingham and Solihull Integrated Care Board

NHS North West London Integrated Care Board

NHS Derby and Derbyshire Integrated Care Board

NHS Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Integrated Care|Board


At MJC Law, ‘there is a huge depth of knowledge and experience across the founding partners, who provide a robust and tenacious offering to clients’. Conor Maguire ;Kate Jackson and Lauren Crow spearhead the department, which specialises in court of protection (health and welfare) matters, alongside community care and mental health work. It regularly represents clients through their litigation friend, the Official Solicitor or other professional litigation friend services.

Practice head(s):

Conor Maguire; Kate Jackson; Lauren Crow

Other key lawyers:

Rosie Banks; Ashley Bradley


‘Connor Maguire, Lauren Crow and Kate Jackson are all known for their experience, tenacity and ability to achieve results for their clients. They are extremely knowledgeable, independent minded’.

‘A collection of seriously experienced Court of Protection solicitors supported by an enthusiastic group of young lawyers. Kate Jackson is a force of nature and takes no prisoners when it comes to putting forward her client’s case. Lauren Crow is charming and clever’.

‘MJC is an excellent niche firm working almost exclusively in Court of Protection and related fields of mental health and community care. Its specialist team is strong at every level’.

Simpson Millar LLP

Led by Melanie Varey, the agile team at Simpson Millar LLP has considerable expertise in the full range of property and affairs, as well as health and welfare work. It frequently acts as a professional deputy, and also provides a full range of support to lay deputies and families. Varley, who has ‘bundles of experience’, specialises in complex cases concerning capacity and sexual relations, and is regularly instructed by the Official Solicitor. Kate Edwards is now at Fletchers Solicitors.

Practice head(s):

Melanie Varey

Other key lawyers:

Aimee Last; Jamie Gordon; Caroline Hurst


‘Really talented, dedicated team with excellent knowledge of both property and affairs and health and welfare’.

‘The solicitors at this firm are extremely knowledgeable and experienced in Court of Protection law and procedure. They are genuinely invested in each client they represent, and this is clear in their diligent preparation of case.’

‘Aimee Last has considerable knowledge of Court of Protection law and procedure’.

‘Simpson Millar has a large team of specialist lawyers that patently draw upon each other’s experience and knowledge to create a highly successful team’.

‘Simpson Millar have an excellent Court of Protection team, with national reach and strength in depth. I can be confident that they will provide high quality representation and will conduct proceedings in a professional and efficient manner’.

‘Mel Varey leads the Court of Protection team. Mel is an outstanding lawyer who is determined and tenacious in the way she represents her clients. Jamie Gordon, an Associate in Mel’s team, also stands out for his compassionate and professional work in representing often very vulnerable clients’.

‘The excellent team is a nationwide presence‘.

‘Caroline Hurst delivers well measured, clear and concise advice. She has the ability to build a fantastic rapport with some of the most vulnerable clients in our society’.

Switalskis Solicitors

Switalskis Solicitors fields a well-established and ‘strong’ team, which is renowned for dealing with complex mental capacity and welfare cases. It also handles deprivation of liberty challenges in the court of protection, alongside community care challenges. It is frequently instructed by the Official Solicitor. Head of department, Alison Kaye, has extensive experience of dealing with complex cases revolving around issues of consent to sexual relationships and deprivation of liberty. Michael Kennedy specialises in mental health and mental capacity law.

Practice head(s):

Alison Kaye

Other key lawyers:

Michael Kennedy; Leesa Hullah


‘Switalskis are leaders in the field. The quality of their health and welfare work is extremely impressive. They attract instructions in interesting and complex matters including serious medical treatment cases’.

‘They have an excellent relationship with the Official Solicitor’s office and regularly receive instructions from the Official Solicitor’.

‘They are extremely knowledgeable, efficient and excellent at developing rapports with clients. They are dedicated and committed to upholding the human rights of people with disabilities, who lack capacity’.

‘I have worked with Michael Kennedy and Leesa Hullah on several tricky and complex and unusual cases in which they have been instructed by the Official Solicitor’.

‘The quality of their instructions are extremely impressive. They are extremely proactive and communicative in their cases. They really go the extra mile and fight for their clients’.

‘The teams that I work with from Switalskis are thorough, reliable, punctual, friendly, knowledgeable and helpful’.  

‘Michael Kennedy, Leesa Hullah and Alison Kaye are excellent. What shines through is their dedication to putting the wishes and feelings of P first and striving to achieve the best outcome for P’.

Work highlights

  • Assisted in a case regarding a young woman with learning disabilities who was removed from the home she shared with her partner after he carried out a violent attack on her. The court decided it was not in her best interests to have unsupervised contact with her partner.
  • Assisted in a case regarding a residential care patient with schizophrenia who has been subjected to a host of allegations by her mother. Injunctions are now in place against the mother. The matter is now listed in the High Court.

Warners Solicitors

Martin Terrell  has an excellent reputation for his work at Warners Solicitors. The team covers the full range of deputyship matters. It frequently acts for the elderly (including wealthy clients and those on benefits), and those who have received damages through brain injuries. The versatile team works on contentious and non-contentious matters, and deals with diverse matters such as lasting powers of attorneys and trusts. It is skilled at advising on other related issues such as tax, welfare benefits and funding issues.

Practice head(s):

Martin Terrell


‘Martin Terrell has a detailed knowledge of the area’.

Very understanding and really put you at ease with their professional but friendly approach‘.

‘Deep knowledge of Court of Protection matters and the MCA 2005. Friendly and responsive partners and associates‘.

‘Knowledgeable, calm, diligent and client focused. Attentive to best interests of vulnerable clients’.

Warners is a regional firm but its Court of Protection team is large and extremely experienced and capable’.

Martin Terrell is a well-known and highly experienced Court of Protection and private client lawyer whom I would recommend without hesitation‘.

‘The Court of Protection Team are very proactive in their approach to managing the client’s affairs. They “think outside the box” and welcome innovative solutions that help to not only manage the properties but prevent future issues’.

‘Martin Terrell and his team are highly professional’.

Weightmans LLP

Weightmans LLP fields an excellent national team, which covers a wide range of health & welfare, as well as property & financial affairs matters. It acts for a large number of local authorities, NHS Trusts and private health and social care providers. Areas of expertise span advising on consent to medical treatment, the overlap between the Mental Health Act/Mental Capacity Act, and issues surrounding safeguarding. At the helm are Simon GoacherRichard JollyRichard Bate and Sarah Louise Walker.

Practice head(s):

Simon Goacher; Richard Jolly; Richard Bate; Sarah Louise Walker

Other key lawyers:

Morris Hill


‘Very experienced across a range of Court of Protection issues. Morris Hill’.

‘What makes this team unique is that many of them have had prior experience of working for local authorities which means they are uniquely aware of how local authorities work and the legal issues we face’. 

‘Morris Hill is always very knowledgeable and approachable. He is comfortable with the most complex of cases and always gives useful and practical legal advice’.

‘This is a global powerhouse of a firm’.

‘Weightmans have an excellent Court of Protection team. They are experienced in representing public bodies in the most complex of matters. They are trusted as a safe pair of hands by many local authorities’.

‘Morris Hill is exceptional. He gives pragmatic advice and gets to the heart of the issues. He is excellent with clients’.


Key clients

The Christie NHS Foundation Trust

Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust

Derbyshire County Council

Gateshead MBC

Stoke-on-Trent City Council

Wigan MBC

Wakefield MBC

Kirklees MBC

Leeds City Council

Cheshire West & Chester Council

Work highlights

  • Acts on behalf of The Christie NHS Foundation Trust in relation to a patient with cancer. P lacks capacity to make decisions in relation to his treatment and he requires surgery otherwise he has a very poor prognosis.
  • Acts on behalf of Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust in ongoing Court of Protection proceedings concerning a patient that lacks capacity in relation to his care and support needs and residence.
  • Acts on behalf of Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust in Court of Protection proceedings concerning P who had an acquired brain injury. He was a patient on the Trust’s rehabilitation unit and had reached his rehabilitation potential.

Freeths LLP

The majority of Freeths LLP ’clients are brain injured and have received multi-million-pound compensation awards. It also has considerable experience of working with elderly clients. The group is particularly skilled at handling welfare work, as well as property and affairs matters. Natasha Molloy and Melanie Williams co-head the department. Williams and Jane Maitland are both appointed to the Office of the Public Guardian’s Panel of Deputies.

Practice head(s):

Natasha Molloy; Melanie Williams

Other key lawyers:

Jane Maitland; Navada Ward


‘Melanie Williams is the head of the team. Melanie has been appreciative, I believe, of our collaborative approach and I feel we work well together in solving issues that arise’.

‘Melanie Williams is an experienced and highly capable practitioner’.

‘I have worked with the CoP team for many years and am always impressed with their dedication and particular attention to detail’.

‘Focused, engaged, personal, and real knowledge of the clients as people’.

‘Freeths CoP team works in a collaborative way with the client, their family members and also the wider professional network. They are approachable and flexible in their approach’.

‘Natasha Molloy heads the service and provides stability and expertise in supporting her colleagues. She has a straightforward approach and is clear and articulate when querying issues or when taking decisions’.

‘Navada Ward is responsive and clear in her manner. She is organised and open to discussion over decisions to be made’.

‘Always keeping the best interest of her client at the front of their minds the team at Freeths offer a professional and supportive service’.

JMW Solicitors LLP

JMW Solicitors LLP fields an agile team which manages assets at a value of approximately £750m, plus property for around 900 children and vulnerable adult clients. Key names to note are Manchester-based Megan Christie-Copeland, and Kiran Vasudeva who is at the London office.

Practice head(s):

Megan Christie-Copeland; Kiran Vasudeva

Other key lawyers:

Rebecca Brown; Andrew Cusworth


‘Rebecca Brown is experienced and sensible, providing detailed and sound advice on Court of Protection and Deputyship costs in clinical negligence proceedings. She is my ‘go to’ advisor for this type of work’.

‘The team as a whole are very accommodating, friendly and client driven. They go above and beyond to assist you and always put the clients’ best interests first’.

‘The individuals I have dealt with from JMW Solicitor have been very knowledgeable and experienced with excellent expertise in our field. They are organised and honest and transparent. Always getting back to you in reasonable time and answering any questions that have been asked’.

‘A brilliant team’.

‘Andrew Cusworth’s expertise and professionalism in moving things forward is very much appreciated’.

‘I have worked with the London court of protection team and they are one of my go-to firms for introducing clients who need post-settlement advice on trusts and court of protection matters’.

‘Kiran Vasudeva is outstanding. She is incredibly knowledgeable, frank in her approach, superb with clients, a team player and is always looking ahead and anticipating what might go wrong and how it can be avoided. She is one of my reliable and trusted advisors in the field’.

‘Most lawyers we have dealt with over the years can come across as ‘removed’ and speak in a way that makes them appear obviously as a lawyer. In many cases this is right and proper, but it can add to the tension meaning that our clients rely on us too much to interpret what the lawyer meant. We don’t have to do this with JMW Solicitor’.

Lanyon Bowdler

Led by Neil Davies, the deputyship team at Lanyon Bowdler is praised for its ‘strength in depth' and being 'a safe pair of hands’. The practice deals with a range of complex property and affairs matters, as well as receiving instructions on welfare cases. The department manages approximately 60 deputyships and trusts with assets in excess of £120m.

Practice head(s):

Neil Davies

Other key lawyers:

Lucy Speed


‘Neil Davis is very experienced and approachable. He always has the clients’ best interests at the heart of his work’.

‘I think the team members are friendly and approachable which is an important feature for professionals, clients and their families. Neil always makes himself available for zoom meetings and contribute to discussions constructively’.

‘Neil Davies is calm and professional in his approach and is always clear and concise in his feedback regarding CoP matters. He is very clear about the information he would need to see in order to consider a purchase and is thorough in his feedback if declined’.

‘They are responsive, resourceful helpful kind, open honest and very hard working. The team knows its clients well and its subject matter well. They are well coordinated and professional at all times’.

‘Lucy is a great partner for the firm and a pleasure to work with. She is dedicated to her job and to her clients and approaches them in a person centred way. She pays high attention to detail and is pragmatic and realistic in her approach to problem solving’. 

‘I have worked with Neil Davies Partner and Lucy Speed Partner at Lanyon Bowdler. The qualities that stood out for me were as follows. They are approachable and available when a client is in need urgently. Understanding changes that present with clients’ needs. Ability to engage with difficult families’.

‘The team remains constant. You are always able to contact the person you want. The response from them is timely. Lucy Speed is approachable and always helpful. She is more like a personal friend than a lawyer’.

‘Neil Davies has been a fantastic Deputy for my son’s case. He is always supportive of my son’s needs and ours as a family. He goes out of his way to deal with issues to take the stress away from us. Lucy Small has also been outstanding. Her knowledge has helped us get to where we are’. 

Work highlights

  • Acting as professional deputy for a large number of families affected by the Shrewsbury & Telford Hospitals NHS Trust enquiry and consequent Ockenden Report.
  • Acted for daughter of JX seeking emergency injunction to prevent mother’s removal from care home.
  • Acted for Bespoke Health & Social Care Ltd in proceedings brought by CCG concerning the care and residence of young person with complex behaviour, learning disability and autism.

RWK Goodman

The ‘collaborative, approachable and empathetic’ team at RWK Goodman, is led by Tracy Norris-Evans, Maria Meek , Sara Isenberg and Louise Nettle. It advises on all aspects of court of protection work, whether assisting lay clients, or acting as professional deputy /attorney for incapacitated individuals.

Practice head(s):

Tracy Norris-Evans; Maria Meek; Sara Isenberg; Louise Nettle

Other key lawyers:

Eirian Hitchmough


‘They genuinely care and put the end client’s needs and wishes at the centre of everything. They take such a personal approach to it. They take the time to really know the important points such as the wishes of their client (e.g. on a deputy case), the views of the family, and so on’. 

‘The team are great – in particular Sara Isenberg, who is in my opinion, just immense. I’ve been blown away with the care and attention she places in her work. She knows the answers there and then – no looking things up and coming back to you’.

‘Maria Meek and Eirian Hitchmough from RWK Goodman are amazing’.

TV Edwards Solicitors LLP

TV Edwards Solicitors LLP has ‘very committed lawyers who are able to give sound legal advice and manage clients with challenging cases with ease’. It is co-led by Jacky Starling and Katie Brown. The group has particular expertise in dealing with matters of abuse, neglect and deprivations of liberty.

Practice head(s):

Jacky Starling; Katie Brown

Other key lawyers:

Monica Kreel; Nilufer Ozdemir


‘Monica Kreel is meticulous in her careful examination and analysis of the written evidence. In meetings she is highly effective at uncovering concealed facts. She can be relied upon to keep the case process on track when the other legal teams are struggling to do so. Her diligence and commitment are exemplary’.

‘I find that the Court of Protection team prepare cases with considerable care and regard to vulnerable clients’ interests. Further, I find they take a pragmatic approach to cases, often proposing sensible methods of taking cases forward’.

‘The individuals in the Court of Protection team have considerable experience in welfare work and they bring their knowledge of related areas such as housing and community care to Court of Protection cases, which is of great assistance’. 

Ward Hadaway LLP

Under the leadership of Lisa Evans, Nicola Richardson and Georgina Rowley, the team at Ward Hadaway LLP, frequently advises on a wide array of matters such as section 21A challenges to deprivations of liberty, and applications to limit or withdraw treatment. It has specialist expertise in all aspects of the Mental Capacity Act, and on its interface with the Mental Health Act.

Practice head(s):

Lisa Evans; Nicola Richardson; Georgina Rowley


‘What sets Ward Hadaway’s Court of Protection team out from any other is their willingness to provide prompt support for their clients, with different skill sets within the team and the wider organisation which they do draw on if needed’.

‘They are always realistic and practical and keen to find a solution, just as we are. I don’t need to spend time explaining how we work, they just “get it”’.

‘Georgina Rowley has helped me with complex cases, and she has the ability to independently and robustly enter the room and provide very authoritative advice and representation. Georgina was clearly able to explain processes and procedures to me and others’.

‘Lisa Evans has exceptional problem-solving skills and is always on hand to provide urgent Court of Protection advice and support, being very responsive and approachable’.

Key clients

North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust

North East and North Cumbria ICB

NHS South Tyneside CCG

County Durham and Darlington

SH Foundation Trust

South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust

Gateshead Health NSH Foundation Trust

Hartlepool and Stockton-On-Tees CCG

South East London ICB

Tees Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust

North East Commissioning Services

Tees Valley Clinical Commissioning Group

Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Sheffield Children’s Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Dorset University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust