At Boodle Hatfield LLP, Hayden Bailey leads a team of ‘extremely high quality, detail-oriented advisors on complex private client matters’. It is particularly skilled at advising on ‘trust structures holding landed estates or large operating businesses’. The ‘very solution orientated’ team specialises in complex international wealth structuring mandates for business and private assets. In addition, it is renowned for advising some of the largest family-owned businesses and family offices in the UK and internationally on governance, risk management and wealth preservation. Simon Rylatt has an impressive roster of high-net-worth (HNW) clients. Kyra Motley is well known for advising clients in the Middle East and acts for ten different Royal families and 28 billionaires. Salpy Kouyoumjian is another key figure who specialises in succession, tax, wealth preservation and estate planning advice. Laurence Morgan advises international HNW individuals on their tax, estate and succession planning. Other names to note include Sue Laing; Andrea Zavos and Sara Maccallum. Clare Stirzaker regularly advises on succession planning and related legal and tax matters for multi-generational families and their family offices.
Personal tax, trusts and probate in London
Other key lawyers:
Sue Laing; Andrea Zavos; Simon Rylatt; Sara Maccallum; Kyra Motley; Laurence Morgan; Salpy Kouyoumjian; Julie Howard; Clare Stirzaker
‘The team can cover various legal and tax issues such as property conveyance, tax planning, pre-immigration planning, trusts and probate. It is a boutique law firm with a very personal and tailor-made approach. For private client matters, I would say it is one of the best in London’.
‘Very reactive and down to earth with a human touch. I have been working with Salpy Kouyoumjian for many years and she is brilliant. Very knowledgeable and so professional’.
‘Simon Rylatt is an exceptional private client lawyer who is a pleasure to work with. When collaborating with advisors from other disciplines he is keen to understand technical complexities and adds great value to the team’.
‘The firm and in particular Salpy K has an excellent Middle East focus. We have a large ME client base and we find Salpy and her colleagues sensible in how they advise clients in relation to structuring generally and also the tax and legal ramifications of investing into the UK’.
‘The firm is technically excellent and I have worked with Laurence Morgan who has given technically excellent advice in a user friendly manner. Laurence is equally at home advising on cross-border succession law and taxation’.
‘I am always hugely impressed when I deal with Kyra Motley. She has a real depth and understanding of clients’ needs and provides clear, succinct and precise advice. The range of her practice is impressive and the connections and contacts that she has in, particularly, the Middle East family office space is noteworthy’.
‘Kyra is easily one of the top Private Client Partners in London, with a solid book of clients, some of which I have personally introduced, in the UHNW category including billionaire families. Every client has been pleased with the advice and work done by Kyra’.
‘Boodle Hatfield really gets the Middle East market, with Arabic speakers in the London office and a total cultural empathy for the Islamic client. Salpy Kouyoumjian is a supernova in the London galaxy of private client lawyers – super bright, super fun and super talented‘.
The large team at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has a stellar reputation for its advice to HNW/UHNW individuals and their families, family offices, landed estates, private banks, trustees and wealth managers. It also acts as leading advisers to entrepreneurial wealth creating families. The practice is led by Robert Blower, Piers Master and William Begley. A sizeable portion of its work is cross-border and it is particularly skilled at coordinating cross-jurisdictional matters. Highlights included Nicola Saccardo joining the firm from Italian tax law firm, Maisto e Associati in August 2022. It also added Jeremy Arnold to its ranks from Withers LLP in June 2022. Simon Weil specialises in tax planning, trusts, philanthropy and charities. Nicola Thorpe and Sangna Chauhan – who is ‘technically excellent’ – are rapidly building strong client bases. Dominic Lawrance and Alice Wilne are other key members of the team. Clients include some of the world’s wealthiest families. The group also excels in advising on inter-generational succession.
Robert Blower; Piers Master; William Begley
Other key lawyers:
Simon Weil; Dominic Lawrance; Sangna Chauhan; Nicola Thorpe; Alice Wilne
‘CRS is a firm that combines a local and UK focus on private clients with larger offshore trust work. They have good litigation support too’.
‘Bart Peerless is well-respected, full of common sense, excellent at dealing with private clients, a thoroughly easy person to work with. Robert Blower is an intelligent and thoughtful tax and trust lawyer with strong clients in the offshore sector, who is always a pleasure to work with’.
‘Technical leaders in their field of expertise. Technically proficient advice delivered in a highly personable manner’.
‘Dominic Lawrence is the pre-eminent advisor in London on the taxation of non-UK domiciled individuals and offshore trusts. Highly respected by his clients, colleagues and peers’.
‘Sangna Chauhan – technically strong, practical and diligent. Would have no hesitation at referring Sangna to any client’.
‘High quality, strength in depth, value for money. Bart Peerless, Robert Blower and Piers Master are all outstanding; know their stuff, and have ability to convey in simple terms’.
‘Very responsive and a few real stars in the areas of both technical excellence and client service. Bart Peerless-very experienced partner with outstanding client service skills and technical strength’.
‘Piers Master is a highly intelligent and excellent technician with understated but effective style’.
The Farrer & Co private client team ‘continues to deliver a personal and exceptional service. Understanding client personalities, nuances and preferences and being able to tailor their service effortlessly is what’s different about Farrers’. Under the joint leadership of Bryony Cove and Sarah von Schmidt, it regularly advises wealthy families and individuals as well as trustee companies, banks/wealth managers and family offices. The ‘exceptional’ Russell Cohen has a substantial practice advising some of the wealthiest international families in the world and also advises institutional clients. The ‘really fantastic’ Oliver Piper has particular expertise in trust law, advising trustees, settlors and beneficiaries on all matters relating to the formation, administration and restructuring of UK and offshore trusts. Alexandra Hollingshead provides complex trusts, tax and structuring advice to trustees and individuals, family businesses and family offices. Catherine McAleavey is an experienced trusts and succession planning lawyer who acts primarily for UK-based wealthy individuals and families. Jennifer Ridgway joined the team from Michelmores LLP in November 2022.
Bryony Cove; Sarah von Schmidt
Other key lawyers:
Russell Cohen; Alexandra Hollingshead; Oliver Piper; Georgina James; Richard McDermott; Claire Randall; Nicola Pomfret; Jennifer Ridgway; Catherine McAleavey
‘The team are a harmonious bunch with exceptional technical skills and wonderful client service. Bryony Cove, Richard McDermott, Sarah von Schmidt – and others. They all have a passion for outstanding client service encompassing empathy and honesty’.
‘Farrers have a strong reputation as one of the best general practice private client law firms. They have a prestigious client base and are known for providing high end advice to a range of clients’.
‘The Farrer team provides excellent services. They are very personable and their advice is always of the highest quality. Russell Cohen is one of the best Private Client lawyers I have worked with. He is intelligent and knowledgeable while being at the same time very personable’.
‘Strong experts and very cohesive and interconnected teams, able to support UHNW families on all matters. Expert technical advice but also completely client minded, allowing client to properly prioritise their matters and concerns’.
‘They are responsive and knowledgeable and listen rather than giving stock responses‘.
‘Farrer & CO LLP are the Rolls-Royce of the Private Client world. Their Private Client team combine charm, excellent client handling skills and heavy duty intellectual firepower in equal measure’.
‘Russell Cohen – Partner – Calm, reassuring and able to identify quickly, and communicate clearly, the heart of the matter. Claire Randall – Partner – a diamond edged mind capable of handling the most complex tax problems’.
‘Exceptional team willing to find solutions to complex problem. Georgina James is innovative and creative’.
Forsters LLP ‘understands the importance of top quality client service. They deliver consistently high standard work on time and within budget’. Xavier Nicholas heads the department that is praised for its ‘personal and exceptional levels of service’. It continues to be a ‘go-to’ firm for multi-dimensional matters involving billions of pounds of assets. The group acts for wealthy clients, including major entrepreneurs, international and multi-generational families, billionaires, family offices, trustees of significant cross-border estates, in addition to well-known artists and authors. Nicholas Jacob is recommended for his sophisticated private wealth planning advice and for his work on all aspects of international family governance. Anthony Thompson is one of the leading advisers to Middle Eastern UHNW clients. Guy Abrahams is another highly impressive private client lawyer. Patricia Boon works with high-net-worth individuals within and outside the UK. Alfred Liu is also recommended.
Other key lawyers:
Anthony Thompson; Nicholas Jacob; Patricia Boon; Andrew Lane; Kelly Noel-Smith; Jo Thompson; Carole Cook; Guy Abrahams; Jeremy Robertson; Daniel Ugur; Alfred Liu; Rupert Mead; Charlotte Evans-Tipping; James Brockhurst; Catherine Hill
‘The calibre of the partners and associates is very high compared to other firms. They have a broad depth of experience and technical skill which is not always found in other firms. Their staff retention rates seem high too, which helps the client experience’.
‘To me the key point about Forsters is that it is a committed private client firm with a broad range of top level private client practitioners. Xavier is very good and I would have no hesitation in recommending him to clients’.
‘Jeremy Robertson is one of the younger partners and is excellent. extremely approachable, knowledgeable and, importantly, likeable. Guy Abrahams technically excellent , a problem solver and easy to work with’.
‘All in the team are impressive with Patricia Boon, Daniel Uger and Alfred Liu being specifically mentioned for availability (they will really really try to make timings work). All show a maturity and confidence in handling clients (of all shapes and sizes) that belie their age’.
‘Very knowledgeable team, with conservative approach to protect the client in difficult matters. I have worked with Xavier. Technically excellent, good commercial acumen and bedside manner ‘.
‘Rupert Mead is, in my view, the best trust lawyer around. Both he and his team, including Charlotte Evans-Tipping, are extremely knowledgeable whilst also offering pragmatic solutions. They are both team players and a joy to work with jointly for the benefit of our clients’.
‘Personal service and go above and beyond. They are extremely strong on family governance. Nick Jacob and Anthony Thompson are the best in their field’.
‘Patricia Boon – very approachable and pragmatic. Alfred Liu – very hardworking and reliable’.
At Macfarlanes LLP ‘the quality of the advice and attention to detail pervades at all levels of the private client team. They are exceptionally bright and always maintain momentum on any assignment’. Piers Barclay is at the helm – the department is ‘the yardstick of quality in international private client matters. Quite simply outstanding in anything they do’. It is skilled at handling a myriad of complex situations for typically high-net-worth clients with assets, business interests and families across multiple jurisdictions. Among the many ‘highly qualified professionals’ is Nicholas Harries who has a broad practice covering international trust and estate planning as well as assisting entrepreneurial clients fulfil their charitable and philanthropic goals. Charles Gothard spends considerable time in Switzerland developing relationships with key intermediaries and foreign lawyers. Edward Reed‘s practice has a large European element. Other names to note include Richard Giangrande, Alex Jones, who was promoted to partner in May 2023, as well as senior counsel, Paul Hardwick.
Other key lawyers:
Edward Reed; Charles Gothard; Nicholas Harries; Richard Giangrande; Mark Hunter; Paul Hardwick; Charlotte Howard; Jennifer Smithson; Charlie Maydon Grace; Michael Shaw; Sebastian Prichard Jones; Alex Jones; Oliver Court
‘Good at matching the needs of a project with the right individual(s) as have resources at all levels from the more senior partners (Piers Barclay and Nicholas Harries particularly strong), younger partners (Richard Giangrande and Mark Hunter) and associates who function at a far higher level than other firms (Paul Hardwick stands out)’.
‘Edward Reed stands out as an all-round advisor, capable of grasping clients’ needs, including international ones, and translating them into wealth management structures tailored to the client’.
‘Piers Barclay and Nicholas Harries have a wonderful talent for connecting with clients understanding their needs and presenting often complex legal matters in a simple fashion. They are leaders in their field. Paul Hardwick is an exceptional associate with a fantastic legal brain’.
‘Charles Gothard: I am glad I have always been on the same side. Rigorous, thorough and gets things done. Jenny Smithson: Brilliant technical adviser with a can-do mindset. In particular in US related matters‘.
‘Knowledge, experience, toughness with the revenue authorities, resolution, calmness under pressure. The key platers in this team are Sebastian Prichard Jones and Richard Giangrande. But everyone is excellent’.
‘Piers Barclay – one of the friendliest solicitors I have ever worked with. Clients are always at ease. The best all around lawyer I’ve ever worked with. Piers has led engagement delivering complex matters for clients of our firm. I trust him completely’.
‘I have worked quite closely with Paul Hardwick on a number of clients. Paul is a very likable individual who is easily trusted and very dependable. His attention to detail means that the advice he offers clients is always top quality’.
‘Special mention of new partner Alex Jones – outstanding technical expertise with strong communication and people skills, ability to explain complex UK tax topics with great clarity. Charlie Maydon Grace – Amazing lawyer, always ‘on’ and thinking about client matters’.
The ‘highly rated’ Fiona Poole has been promoted to the head of department at Maurice Turnor Gardner LLP – she leads a practice which ’provides magic circle advice in a friendly and boutique style way. They are the perfect combination of being intellectual and a pleasure to work with’. The agile team maintains its specialist focus on complex international and cross-border estate planning and succession structuring for UHNW clients. Clients include foreign royalty, English aristocracy, entrepreneurs, businessmen, traditionally wealthy families, trustees and private banks. Ceris Gardner has particular expertise in complex and high-value probates with an international dimension. Clare Maurice receives a steady stream of instructions from trustees, family offices and beneficiaries on a whole host of complex trust, estate planning and personal tax matters. Jennifer Chambers has considerable experience of establishing tax efficient structures for the preservation of assets and succession planning. The ‘extremely clever’ Eesha Arora has an international client base. Paul Whitehead also plays a pivotal role in the department.
Other key lawyers:
Ceris Gardner; Clare Maurice; Jennifer Chambers; Ed Powles; Emma-Jane Weider; Colin Senez; Eesha Arora; Dominic Conde-Cole; Claire Weeks; Paul Whitehead
‘Market leading private client firm. Fiona Poole is entrepreneurial and empathetic. Ed Powles is very bright. Emma-Jane Weider is technically brilliant, with great people skills’.
‘Colin Senez – is well connected in the French speaking world. Eesha Arora – is incredibly bright and personable. Dominic Conde Cole – nothing phases Dominic and he is always available to take a call at short notice‘.
‘The team is very dynamic and able to react on short notice. I also understand that the firm had been strongly promoting women for a long time already. The individuals are very knowledgeable and are good in providing responses to the point’.
‘Claire Weeks and Clare Maurice are excellent. They have all demonstrated an incredible ability to master difficult legal and tax issues and provide advice that is succinct and to the point’.
‘Excellence throughout the team – the perfect private client niche offering. Eesha Arora – brilliant at considering all angles and giving clear, pragmatic advice. Already a star but becoming an ever brighter one, rightly so’.
‘All of the partners with whom I have worked are extremely impressive, as are their associates. They are a top choice for clients with significant wealth who require sophisticated UK tax and estate planning advice, including where there is a cross-border component’.
‘Claire Weeks is a standout partner who is both technically masterful and a delight to work with. The team is easy to reach, a delight to deal with and always churns out comprehensive advice without one feeling that every second is ‘on the clock’.
‘Paul Whitehead is a walking tax encyclopaedia with a superb ability to distil complex issues into easily digestible advice which is commercial and clear. Paul is on my speed dial for any UK tax matters’.
Mishcon de Reya LLP has a ‘strong brand in the private wealth space, with eye-catching thought leadership’. Charlie Sosna is the new head of department. The team consists of ‘very high calibre’ lawyers' and is recommended for its advice on domestic and overseas tax planning and corporate structuring work for private individuals and their families. The focus of the team is on UHNW and HNW clients, predominantly with an international element. Andrew Goldstone frequently advises on domicile and residence issues. Filippo Noseda is well placed to advise on international tax, succession and estate planning issues. Kassim Meghjee advises UK and international clients on all aspects of personal and business taxation. Patrick Harney receives many plaudits for his specialisms in US-UK and UK-Irish cross-border tax advice, trust and estate planning, and for his tax planning work on UK resident non-domiciled matters. Other names to note include Martin Davies , Nicola Simmons and David Whittaker. Stuart Adams ‘combines an acute intellect with a gentle yet steely manner’.
Other key lawyers:
Filippo Noseda; Martin Davies; Patrick Harney; Kassim Meghjee; Andrew Goldstone; Nicola Simmons; Katie Doyle; David Whittaker; Stuart Adams
‘Patrick Harney has established himself in the market as perhaps the predominant legal specialist in the UK/US private client market. He gives carefully considered, pragmatic advice in a manner which is easy to understand. He is in a league of his own’.
‘Andrew Goldstone – thoroughly personable, supporting and technically strong. Very experienced professional, working with complex and challenging client situations. Excellent role model to those working with him. Charlie Sosna – technically ‘top of his game”.
‘Katie Doyle has vast experience advising clients on domestic and international structures, including cross-border estate planning, Family, Corporate and Private Wealth Disputes and cases arising therein. I was very impressed with the strategies she implemented and her leadership’.
‘Andrew Goldstone and Filippo Noseda are always an inspiration to work with due to their vast experience, how they share said experience and their knowledge with their team and colleagues, simplifying complex situations for their clients with long term solutions that have an impact in various generations’.
‘This is a hard-working and high-performing team. Their reputation is excellent among clients for high-end advice delivered responsively’.
‘Charlie Sosna and Nicola Simmons are excellent lawyers, very smart and proactive. They understand the client’s needs and provide comprehensive and solid advices. They are great in advising high net worth individuals in relocation processes to the UK’.
‘Stuart Adams has a cool head, and the ability to digest and explain complex issues in a readily digestible format. Martin Davies’ grasp of the intricacies of advising families from the Middle East, and with particular reference to Saudi Arabia, is unparalleled in the private client arena. Charlie Sosna has a remarkable grasp of the legislation and translates these skills to deliver clear and succinct advice’.
‘David Whittaker is very smart, very aware of the bigger picture and gives excellent commercial advice. A real one to watch. I also know Filippo Noseda well by reputation. He is extremely strong on regulatory issues‘.
Various (advice on the multi-jurisdictional issue of the processing of financial data by governmental bodies)
Jennifer Webster (“Jenny”) (holding HMRC to account on the transfer of personal data)
- Advised various individuals on the multi-jurisdictional issues of the processing of financial data by governmental bodies.
- Advised Jennifer Webster on issues of data privacy and more specifically, the lawfulness of the processing of data between international tax collection bodies.
The ‘very strong and friendly’ team at Stephenson Harwood has ‘continued to expand, the firm is hugely respected within the industry, and the quality of the partners is excellent, as is their advice. They are multi-jurisdictional and have continued to expand their services’. It was pleased to add Beatrice Puoti to its ranks from Burges Salmon LLP. Puoti has considerable expertise in advising UK residents and non-residents, domiciled and non-domiciled individuals, private banks, trustees and family offices on their international tax, trust and estate planning issues. James Quarmby heads the department, which advises many wealthy clients ranging from multi-millionaires to ultra-high-net-worth (often high profile) individuals and families, with billions of pounds in assets. The clients are typically entrepreneurial and international. Emily Osborne leads the team’s family office advisory service. Jonathan Conder is experienced in acting for families with an US connection and also for families from SE Asia. Michael Rutili is another key figure who has become a trusted adviser to numerous, mostly European, private clients, their families and businesses.
Other key lawyers:
Jonathan Conder; Emily Osborne; Beatrice Puoti; Michael Rutili
‘The team give exceptional advice and I use them frequently. They give constructive, creative and innovative advice. They think outside the box. Jon Conder is an exceptionally safe pair of hands and I would recommend time and time again’.
‘The team works closely with other practices within the firm and can really offer full-service assistance. SH people are approachable and have an accurate yet practical approach to matters.’
‘Michael Rutili is pragmatic, technically knowledgeable and has great language skills. We greatly trust his ability to understand matters and foresee and prevent any complications down the line. He is our first port of call whenever matters involve tax or succession planning’.
‘Every excellent team has an excellent leader and James Quarmby’s down to earth, approachable yet highly professional style permeates through the entire team. The sheer expertise and years of experience across the team members, along with the global reach with partners worldwide, makes this firm stand out’.
‘James Quarmby is at the top of his game – his differentiator is that although he is technically brilliant, he speaks plainly and not in legal jargon. This makes him extremely approachable and means the advice he gives is always clear and easily understood’.
‘Emily Osborne’s knowledge of the law is unrivalled. She is conscientious and has great attention to detail; this coupled with her very friendly manner makes her stand out from others’.
‘Beatrice Puoti’s understanding of cross border succession laws is unique – she is the only lawyer I know who can write a Will across jurisdictions. Coupled with this expertise is a truly lovely person, who is extremely approachable and professional’.
‘Jon Conder is simply first class. Excellent lawyer across a range of PC tax issues. Beatrice Puoti is superb on cross border succession, excellent with clients and client service is second to none‘.
Nick Warr heads a ‘professional, personable and knowledgeable’ team at Taylor Wessing LLP. Warr has a strong client following, advising single and multi-family offices in numerous jurisdictions, investment bankers, hedge fund managers and private equity principals. In addition, he acts as trustee for some high-profile families and acts as a strategic adviser to a number of billionaire families. Simon Phelps is recommended for his work on complex estate planning, capital and income taxation, in addition to offshore and onshore trusts. Phelps has an excellent reputation in the Asian market. Sanjvee Shah has considerable experience in advising clients on complex cross-border tax, succession and estate planning matters. Kirstie McGuigan is also highly regarded for her handling of a broad range of contentious and non-contentious matters. Also recommended is Damian Bloom, who specialises in UK and international tax and estate planning matters. Bloom has a particular focus on long-term planning for UK and non-UK domiciled individuals. Ben Lister has recently been promoted to the partnership.
Other key lawyers:
Simon Phelps; Damian Bloom; Sanjvee Shah; Dom Rothbarth; Kunal Vyas; Ben Lister; Joshua Boughton; Kirstie McGuigan
‘Nick Warr leads a diverse and growing team of easy to deal with quality people’.
‘Nick Warr – all round expertise in both tax and trusts. Damian Bloom – great all rounder and excellent client service. Dom Rothbarth – great technical brain and able to explain tough concepts well’.
‘The practice is top notch especially for private clients working in the finance industry. They have definitely an edge in this field and the quality of the work is really top notch. Always available and very nice. Nick Warr, Kunal Vyas’.
‘Taylor Wessing is a global firm with a truly impressive depth of knowledge and expertise within their private client department, and a very impressive roster of partners within their London office’.
‘A number of standouts within their team; Nick Warr obviously who is easily within the top 5 private client lawyers in London; with shout-outs to Sanjvee Shah and Ben Lister who recently (and very deservedly) made partner and is one to watch for the future’.
‘Professional, personable, knowledgeable & detailed. Joshua Boughton – responsive with well considered advice. Simon Phelps – professional at all times, providing comprehensive and well considered advice‘.
‘The team are a very ‘joined up’ unit with strong collaborative behaviours. Technically strong and competent. Whilst not unique, the trust and confidence in the team is high and has been consistently so for a number of years’.
‘The strongest team member in my experience is Kirstie McGuigan who is technically very capable, co-ordinates the relationship management, knows personal limits but where to turn for additional support and engenders trust and confidence’.
Christopher Groves and Dora Clarke co-head the large team at Withers LLP, which has considerable international capabilities. It has long been the advisor of choice for the British and global elite and has the biggest team of US-qualified private client attorneys in London. Patricia Milner is recognised for her expertise in tax, trust and estate planning matters for both UK and non-UK resident and domiciled individuals and their families. In addition, she acts as a trustee and long-term counsel to many established families. Philip Munro’s practice centres on succession planning for international families – he also frequently acts for trustees and financial institutions on trust planning matters. Ceri Vokes is a known name for her work on complex cross-border tax planning. Claire Harris, Richard Cassell and Charlie Tee are all well-regarded. The team added Carrie Duncan to its ranks from Anthony Gold Solicitors LLP in January 2023. Nicolette Bostock joined the firm from Laura Devine Immigration in November 2022.
Christopher Groves; Dora Clarke
Other key lawyers:
Richard Cassell; Patricia Milner; Philip Munro; Ceri Vokes; Claire Harris; Penelope Warr; Stephen Nerland; Charlie Tee; Mara Monte; Alessia Paoletto; Carrie Duncan; Nicolette Bostock
‘Responsive, forward thinking, smart, congenial’.
‘The team is quite unique in London to the extent that they have both UK and US private client lawyers closely working together as one team for clients who are subject to both tax systems. They differentiate themselves by having lawyers who have deep expertise in specialist areas such as trusts, insurance and funds’.
‘I believe they also stand out in terms of the depths of the relationships they have with their clients, and quality of service‘.
‘Highest quality and superb client list. Penny Warr, Charlie Tee and Mara Monte all super knowledgeable and great people too, excellent client service’.
‘This team provides knowledge and skills for international clients, which is vital for the increasing mobile clients where families are linked to multiple countries. They are thoughtful and clear about what they can do for each potential client from the beginning of the relationship, as well as costs that would be incurred’.
‘Alessia Paoletto is knowledgeable, thoughtful and client-centric. She also understands that change is happening across the professions with the rise of technology, and looks to see how clients can benefit from this in relationships she builds’.
Baker McKenzie has a ‘global network of private client specialists’ which ‘is really very useful – very few firms can match this’. Ashley Crossley heads the department, which continues to see a significant inflow of work from the Middle East. The focus of the group’s Middle Eastern practice is centred around ultra-high-net-worth individuals and families from Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the UAE and Bahrain. It continues to be busy providing UK tax advice to some of the largest family offices for UK resident non-UK domiciled families. Phyllis Townsend is well-respected for her advice to trustees, family offices and wealthy individuals – particularly entrepreneurs and Middle Eastern ruling families. Townsend frequently advises on cross-border tax, asset protection and trust planning matters.
Other key lawyers:
Phyllis Townsend; Christopher Cook; Alfie Turner
‘This is one of London’s leading teams and has maintained a deep commitment to the space. In my experience they are particularly expert in combining the non-contentious and contentious teams to deal with developments that inevitably arise in the life of an offshore structure’.
‘Phyllis Townsend is an outstanding lawyer and very easy to deal with. In his role as lead, Ashley Crossley is excellent and has a deep understanding of the macro picture for international families’.
‘Christopher Cook is very responsive and a star of the future. Recent joiner from PwC Alfie Turner is a great addition to the team having dealt with some of PwC’s “crown jewels” clients in the past he brings a very client friendly approach to his practice’.
Alastair Collett heads the practice at BDB Pitmans, which supports a varied client base of some UHNW individuals who have new or inherited wealth ranging in value from tens of millions to billions. It covers a broad spread of matters from estate planning and succession to onshore and offshore pension schemes. Consultant, Helen Ratcliffe, has an international client base. Judith Millar has considerable experience of working with high-net-worth UK and international families. Marilyn McKeever has an interesting tax and succession practice with a focus on the US. McKeever has niche expertise in employee benefit trusts, international pension schemes and ‘disguised’ remuneration. Sophie St John was promoted to the partnership in June 2022.
Other key lawyers:
Helen Ratcliffe; Sophie St John; Susan Johnson; Judith Millar; Elizabeth Neale; Marilyn McKeever
‘We appreciate working with a team where partners are competent, readily involved and accessible. Ability to deal with a variety of work and situations and identify solutions’.
‘BDB Pitmans has a deep private client bench and a culture of respect and collaboration within client advisor teams internally and externally. A pleasure to work with’.
‘Helen Ratcliffe is very strong technically and a pleasure to work with. Sophie St. John’s return to the firm has been a positive in terms of expanding their ability to service clients promptly. Susan Johnson’s organisational/project management skills are legendary’.
‘Innovative and responsive. They take time to understand the clients needs from the scenario and background presented to them to work alongside the client and his other advisors to achieve the best outcomes’.
‘Judith Millar is an excellent private client partner. She is extremely technically sound but is very client friendly and empathetic. For a private client solicitor to have all these qualities is quite unique’.
‘Helen Ratcliffe is absolutely superb she is always cognisant of the Trustees’ perspective and her advice is clear and relatable’.
‘The unique aspect is that they are genuinely nice and warm people -this is a friendly firm who puts their clients before their fees – a client can literally feel at home’.
‘Judith Millar is a stand out lawyer -technically very able and delivers practical advice in a thoughtful and helpful manner. Elizabeth Neale has a wealth of experience, a charming and reassuring manner and total commitment to her clients’.
Edwin Coe LLP is praised for being ‘a very discreet, Rolls-Royce practice, where the client is far more important than the solicitor, and service is everything’. It has some strong relationships with a number of the leading wealth management organisations in the UK and internationally. Alison Broadberry – who has ‘bundles of fizzing legal energy’ – and David Goepel – a ‘deep thinker and clear communicator’– co-head the department. The team is increasingly advising on high-value, complex, cross-jurisdictional estates both during a person’s lifetime and after death. Matthew Barnett is another leading member of the department who acts for high- and ultra-high-net-worth individuals on a wide range of tax, trust, estate and succession planning matters. Ben Harle left the firm in November 2022.
Alison Broadberry; David Goepel
Other key lawyers:
Matthew Barnett; Anna Primrose; Eva Moynihan
‘David Goepel – hides a steely strategic brain behind masses of charm’.
‘The team has some brilliant private client lawyers. Matthew Barnett & Anna Primrose are both excellent private client lawyers. Their mastery of administration of complex estates is extremely impressive’.
‘Excellent at advising private clients and trustees on trust law, tax and insurance related products. Alison Broadberry’s sympathetic manner and in-depth knowledge of trust law, tax and insurance related products cuts through the jargon and delivers brilliant results for the client’.
‘David Goepel: deep knowledge and expertise in trust matters. Solution-oriented. Good communication skills and a very agreeable person to work with. Have worked with David for the past 15 years or so’.
‘David Goepel stands out for his intellect and ability to navigate problems, particularly on the international side. He delivers advice in a simple and clear way, and it is always comforting to have his involvement’.
‘Alison Broadberry has decades of experience in UK private client matters. She is very personable and incredibly thorough’.
‘Partner David Goepel has a brain the size of a planet, an easy manner that his clients love and an even more loveable sense of humour. Senior associate Eva Moynihan is extremely capable, able to handle the most complex files and families’.
‘Partner Mathew Barnett is another tremendous asset for the firm and a rock for his clients’.
St. James’s Place
Led by Liz Palmer, the team at Howard Kennedy LLP is ‘filled with technically excellent lawyers who strive to provide great advice to their clients for reasonable prices’. It advises many wealthy families, entrepreneurs, property owners and artists/performers on how to manage family wealth across the generations. Simon Malkiel continues to act for a growing and diverse client base of UK and international wealthy clients. John Annetts regularly deals with a wide range of high value and complex estates ranging in value from £2m to £350m, many of which are multi-jurisdictional. Reshmi Manekporia is recognised for her expertise in Sharia-based wealth planning. Zahra Kanani is another known name in this space. Melissa Doorman departed in November 2022.
Other key lawyers:
Simon Malkiel; John Annetts; Samantha Curnock; Zahra Kanani; Reshmi Manekporia
‘The Private Client team at Howard Kennedy act for an impressive array of HNWIs and UHNWIs, from both an onshore and offshore background. They excel at sustaining long-term relationships with their clients, many of whom have turned to them for more than one generation’.
‘Simon Malkiel – Calm, reassuring and practical. He balances first class technical abilities with a keen eye for what solutions are best for the client in question.’
‘Prompt, proactive services at reasonable prices. Liz Palmer – prompt replies, excellent technical knowledge applied practically and one of the nicest people in the private client world to deal with’.
‘Liz Palmer is highly intelligent and always a pleasure to work with. Simon Malkiel is very good at keeping track of details crucial to client planning and managing projects’.
‘John Annetts is excellent at English estate administration in cross-border situations‘.
‘ One of the go-tos in London for HNW and UHNW private client expertise for those needing sensible, commercial and straightforward advice on and off shore’.
‘Liz Palmer is extremely smart, pragmatic, and sensible with her fees. She is always a total pleasure to work with, courteous, respectful and thoroughly likeable’.
‘Liz Palmer is a star – very strong technically and lovely to work with’.
Hunters Law LLP has ‘a team that has a broad range of partners and associates who can cover almost any aspect of private client work. They have great technical skills and are very practical in their solutions’. Lucinda Tite and Wilfrid Vernor-Miles co-head the department, which acts for HNW and UHNW individuals, often with have international connections. Its clients also frequently have financial interests and family commitments in multiple jurisdictions. Matthew Yates has particular expertise in lifetime and post-death tax and succession planning matters for UK individuals. Mary Elliott advises many prominent and wealthy clients.
Lucinda Tite; Wilfrid Vernor-Miles
Other key lawyers:
Mary Elliott; Julia Richards; Matthew Yates; Vanina Wittenburg; Louise Walker; Alexandra Sarkis
‘Extremely engaged with their clients. Lucinda Tite, Mary Elliott, Julia Richards, Matthew Yates and Vanina Wittenburg ‘.
‘The team is very proactive and efficient and uses technology very efficiently. They have been consistently excellent in their service, seamlessly working as a team delivering high quality advice efficiently and professionally’.
‘Wilfrid Vernor-Miles is at the top of his game, co-ordinating his team with efficiently and dexterity. His colleague Vanina Wittenburg has shown a high level of sophistication and integrity. We’ve had high quality service that has saved us many thousands of pounds’.
‘I find Hunters friendly, highly professional and a source of great comfort whenever I need legal support or advice. Wilfrid Vernor-Miles – clear, efficient and prompt. I never have a moments doubt as to the correctness of his advice and guidance’.
‘They are approachable, efficient and on the ball! My solicitor is Matthew Yates. He has a very easy manner, he is good at explaining the process and the Law, and is particularly likeable’.
‘A desire to be helpful and proactive and a knowledge of the subject, where appropriate. Being available to deal with telephone calls without the endless holding on which is encountered with so many other organisations in current times’.
‘Louise Walker is very knowledgeable helpful and always goes the extra hundred miles. She explains matters carefully and is totally meticulous in dealing with a problem and highly effective’.
‘Mary Elliott is an adaptive and responsive private client partner who is great with clients and advisors’.
Rosamond McDowell heads the department at Payne Hicks Beach LLP, which advises high-net-worth clients from the UK and internationally (many of whom feature in the Sunday Times Rich List, Forbes 400 and the Arabian Business Rich List). It also continues to receive instructions from Scandinavia and the Middle East. Other core areas of strength include advising UK resident non-domiciled clients on issues relating to pre-arrival planning and structuring. Robert Brodrick’s practice is divided into three main geographic areas of clients: Middle East, US/UK and UK domestic. Other highly regarded members of the department include Frederick Bjørn, Basil Dixon, Martin Paisner and Clare Hetherington. Recent highlights included Emma Harris’ promotion to the partnership and Sara Morgan’s addition to the team from Fieldfisher in November 2022.
Other key lawyers:
Frederick Bjørn; Robert Brodrick; Basil Dixon; Martin Paisner; Clare Hetherington; Emma Harris; Sara Morgan
‘The team are extremely professional and courteous and are always on hand to offer guidance, especially on matters of a potentially complicated nature. They provide updates on workstreams and the expected timeframe for them, so you never feel like any matter is forgotten’.
‘The team I work with at PHB have been professional and personable at all times. They are always contactable and available for calls/meetings, even those that are often called at short notice’.
‘As good as it gets. PHB have a vast wealth of top-notch lawyers, who know all there is to know, and can do all there is to do. Their clients – rightly – love them. Undoubtedly at the top of the tree, but don’t waste time that could be spent on clients blowing their own trumpet’.
‘Basil Dixon has an extremely loyal following especially among clients, trustees and solicitors in the offshore world. Partner James Bacon has an uncanny ability to solve the most exacting tax or trust problems, and is much sought-after by families wishing to makes their estates or trusts future-proof’.
‘A blue chip Private Client firm that is a one-stop shop for wealthy families seeking a discreet first class service. While maintaining their client base of Landed Estates. They are equally excellent attending to the needs of non-UK families’.
‘Sara Morgan is an excellent addition to the PHB Private Client team. She is technically extremely good and combines this with first class client handling skills’.
With Rebecca Fisher at the helm, ‘Russell-Cooke LLP combines the strength and depth of talent of a City firm with non-city firm rates. They are our go-to firm for referrals for a complicated matter which needs careful and sensitive handling’. Fisher has particular expertise in advising multi-generational family businesses, entrepreneurs and family offices. Andrew Godfrey has strength in complex cross-border estates and planning matters. Nicole Gallop Mildon joined the firm from Druces LLP in November 2022 and is a diplômée notaire in France. She brings with her a wealth of experience in UK and French tax and estates advice in the private client sphere. Suzanne Mynors, who was promoted to partner in July 2022, is also recommended.
Other key lawyers:
Richard Frimston; Nicole Gallop Mildon; Suzanne Mynors; Patrick Delas; Andrew Godfrey
‘Russell-Cooke LLP listen to the needs of the client. They realise the client is not a theoretical case study but a living, breathing person with potentially idiosyncratic ideas, values and needs. They do what they promise they will do and they do it in the promised timescale’.
‘They go the extra mile providing flexibility to deliver advice that the big, central London firms do not. I cannot recommend them highly enough.’
‘Rebecca Fisher is an innovative, personable, thorough, determined lawyer. She is incredibly emotionally intelligent to what is going on with a client. At the same time she is also incredibly pragmatic and will not shy away from difficult discussions. All in all, a wonderful lawyer’.
‘My experience with Russell-Cooke LLP has been in connection with the French team and the excellent cross-border and French tax advice they provide. They worked with us to come up with practical solutions for various issues for clients with French assets and French tax issues’.
‘Patrick Delas was very approachable and provided the specialist French advice in a way that was easily understandable by the client’.
‘Nicole Gallop Mildon was very approachable and knowledgeable, working with us to provide the French advice required by the client’.
‘Patrick gives clear, practical advice on complex issues. He takes time to understand what the client wants and then tailors his approach to provide a solution that works for them, and not just doing the ‘standard work. He is proactive where there have been changes in the law‘.
‘They combine top-notch technical lawyering skills with an ability to relate fully to their clients, in a field where effective advice often goes beyond black letter law. Rebecca Fisher is excellent: an all-rounder in the private client field’.
Sinclair Gibson LLP has been praised as ‘typifying the best of the private client boutique approach’. It is skilfully co-led by Keith Bruce-Smith and Lucy Gibson and covers a broad range of private client matters. Core areas of expertise include advising on lifetime wealth and tax planning as well as post-death tax planning and estate administration. It also excels in advising on the establishment and ongoing management and administration of trusts and on the provision of family office services. It deftly combines expertise in advising wealthy UK-based families and landed estates with its work in advising international clients on multi-jurisdictional issues.
Keith Bruce-Smith; Lucy Gibson
‘Extremely professional, extensive knowledge and efficient’.
‘Lucy Gibson is outstanding! Her knowledge is exceptional. The service I receive for all areas of our family needs is superb’.
‘Outstanding private client and trust work’.
‘Keith Bruce-Smith, creative in the extreme and an unparalleled appetite for a solution however complex the challenge’.
‘Very high quality partners who take a hands on approach to their matters’.
Executors of the estate of the late Alexander Thynn, 7th Marquess of Bath
Executors of the estate of the late Guy Innes-Ker, 10th Duke of Roxburghe
- Acts for the executors and trustees of the estate of the late Marquess of Bath, dealing with the ongoing administration of this significant and complex estate which includes cross-border elements, aggregable settled property and settled land with heritage exemption considerations.
- Acts for the executors of the late Duke of Roxburghe, who died in 2019. It advises the executors and trustees of this very large landed estate in Scotland on the devolution of the late Duke of Roxburghe’s estate.
Wedlake Bell LLP fields a ‘strong team’, which covers the full range of issues facing UHNW and HNW individuals in the UK and overseas. Its UK and internationally focused team provides excellent advice to families and private business owners. The group is well placed to advise on numerous complex, cross-jurisdictional matters involving tax and tax regularisation, corporate and contentious issues as well as complicated trust structures. Other areas of expertise include providing tax planning advice for UK and international private collectors, charities and landed estates. In addition, it frequently acts for artists and galleries with heritage assets and other collectibles. Camilla Wallace, Jenny Cutts and Matthew Braithwaite are the practice heads. Andrew O’Keeffe excels in a broad range of contentious matters.
Camilla Wallace; Jenny Cutts; Matthew Braithwaite
Other key lawyers:
Andrew O’Keeffe; Antoaneta Proctor; Victoria Mahon de Palacios; Kate Johnson
‘In short, the team provide a comprehensive tax advisory service in the context of private clients. There is strength in depth and ready access to senior lawyers/partners’.
‘Matt Braithwaite is technically sound and highly responsive’.
‘Antoaneta Proctor has a lot of experience with international clients’.
‘Victoria Mahon De Palacios and the team were very precise in their explanation and very prompt in acting upon our request. Even though the service was offered on pro bono basis at the generosity of the firm, we felt like VIP clients all the way through’.
‘The private client team has depth and breadth to handle comprehensively the needs of individuals, families and their businesses’.
‘Kate Johnson is extraordinary. Her insight brings order to chaos, promptly recognising the practical impact of complex rules. She inspires confidence’.
‘Camilla Wallace is impressive. She communicates marvellously, with humour and compassion, grounded in abundant practical experience and technical acumen‘.
‘Camilla Wallace and Math Braithwaite – they are combined a real force of nature, they are a great team. Matthew is very thoughtful and very clever’.
- Advised (on a pro bono basis) and put in place the structure to set up the charity, Svitlo Education. The aim of the charity is to provide online education and English language classes to children who have been affected by the conflict in Ukraine.
At Weightmans LLP ’what truly sets them apart is their client-centric approach. The team’s collaborative mindset fosters a wealth of diverse and holistic perspectives, ensuring clients benefit from well-rounded advice’. Practice head is the ‘exceptional’ Jonathan Shankland, who garners a lot of praise for his offshore tax and estate planning work. Patrick Malone has particular expertise in complex estates and particularly those with literary and heritage/art assets. Caroline Doyle, now a legal director, is also well-regarded along with associate Joshua Ryan. Arshoo Singh left to join Warners Solicitors in September 2023.
Other key lawyers:
Patrick Malone; Caroline Doyle; Joshua Ryan
‘One of the strongest private client legal teams in Europe, Jon & Patrick have assembled a uniquely talented team. They bring together a unique superset of skills across complex estate management, tax advisory and creation of trusts. There is nobody else I would rather work with’.
‘Jon Shankland – simply the best in class in terms of skills, experience and professionalism. He delivers the best result in every case, no matter how complex. He is globally connected to a wealth of talent, always remains calm and focused and provides exactly the right level of communication on the matters at hand’.
‘Patrick Malone continues to win cases with ease, provide timely and prescient advice. He has on multiple occasions explained a unique solution to me that I could never have thought of. Quite an amazing attorney’.
‘Caroline Doyle – She is a really up and coming force for the next generation of talented tax lawyers. She is incredibly technical and was this year I believe promoted to Legal Director as testimony to her ability. She is a phenomenal tax technician with a real eye for complex detail intensive problems and advice. She is simply outstanding’.
‘Joshua Ryan is a force to be reckoned with, he is a fluent French speaker which has been beyond helpful in a number of UK/France matters. Josh is not only an excellent lawyer but a really well connected individual who is already making waves. Josh is a super star for the future ‘.
‘Jon Shankland has a very strong knowledge on complex international tax and structuring matters. Also his way of understanding the cross-border aspects impresses me. His strengths lie in his calm, reflective and absolutely results-oriented proactive approach. The response times to enquiries are always short and the answers without exception detailed’.
‘Patrick Malone is every bit a leading figure in the Tax Trusts & Estates world; he is very calm and collected when dealing with highly technical, sprawling and ultra-high value clients. Clients in my experience love Patrick and he always seems to be available’.
Codan Trust Company / Nkosi Trust
Gillian HarwoodThe E M Shipping Family
JTC Group PLC (Trust & Fiduciary Company)Gillian Harwood
The Estate of Dorothy BohmJTC Group PLC (Trust & Fiduciary Company)
Lord Angus MacDonald, The Baron of Tradeston CBEThe Estate of Dorothy Bohm
The Baroness Van Dedem & Family Lord Angus MacDonald, The Baron of Tradeston CBE
The Research Partnership: Mark Jeffery and Mary AssimakopoulosThe Baroness Van Dedem & Family
Collas Crill International Law FirmThe Research Partnership: Mark Jeffery and Mary Assimakopoulos
Collas Crill International Law Firm
- Acting for The Baroness Van Dedem and the Van Dedem Family and Trusts International tax, succession and estate planning across multiple jurisdictions for the ultra-high net worth family and related family structures.
- Acting for a global top 10 charity on the UK tax, structuring and advisory work for their entry to UK and the EU. Particular focus on the UK tax advantages of UK incorporation for UK UHNW philanthropists
- Acting for a leading UK entrepreneur and businessman in his tax and estate planning, as well as the management of his UK estate generally. Particularly advising in 2023 on the sale of his UK landed estate.
The ‘truly excellent’ John Barnett heads a large and dedicated private wealth team at Burges Salmon LLP with lawyers based in Bristol and London. The group has immense experience of complicated and cross-jurisdictional work for individuals and trusts. Suzanna Harvey provides tax advice to a wide range of clients, from high-net-worth individuals to leading private banks and other financial institutions. Jim Aveline leads the firm’s family business team. Beatrice Puoti left the firm in January 2023.
Other key lawyers:
Jim Aveline; Suzanna Harvey; Emma Heelis-Adams; Catherine de Maid; Edward Hayes
‘Great breath and depth of technical knowledge and a very likeable and helpful team’.
‘John Barnet and Emma Heelis-Adams are both very experienced and technically outstanding solicitors. They are also two of the nicest people that you could hope to meet’.
‘Approachable, efficient and knowledgeable. Jim Aveline: Approachable, efficient and knowledgeable. Good to have on your side’.
‘Hugely approachable and engaging team. Catherine de Maid – hugely knowledgeable and my South African clients love her!’.
‘Very approachable team very quick response time and as the firm is outside London their fees are very competitive. Advice is clear and concise’.
‘Suzanna Harvey and Ed Hayes are both excellent lawyers and very happy to discuss matters informally beforehand and are therefore good sounding boards.’
‘Knowledgeable and market leading’.
Druces LLP has a particular specialism in family offices. Under the direction of Robert Macro, the group covers all areas of wealth planning, international tax structuring and multi-generational advice for mobile and international families. Matthew Duncan is registered as a will draftsman in the Dubai International Financial Centre’s Wills and Probate Registry. Helen Freely does a broad range of private client work covering tax and trusts as well as advising charities. Paul Levy works with many UK and international families and entrepreneurs.
Other key lawyers:
Paul Levy; Matthew Duncan; Helen Freely
‘They take their time to have a pre call with our colleagues in advance of meeting our client for the first time. This gives an excellent first impression’.
‘We know them from working with them for a number of years which allows us to decide which Lawyer would be best suited to our client in terms of age, sex, experience and how they deliver their work’.
‘The team is incredibly knowledgeable, responsive and able to convey complex matters in clear, concise and commercial terms. It is an incredibly tightknit team and you get the benefit of this as a client as you are getting many minds (rather than just one or two) tackling your complex matters’.
‘Robert Macro has an exceptional mind when it comes to complex matters and finding practical solutions (where perhaps others just would cite the challenges). This is coupled with an understated manner that clients really value and appreciate’.
Directors UK (RXM)
Vistra UK (RXM)
Kleinwort Hambros (RXM)
Harbottle & Lewis LLP has ‘technically excellent and highly collaborative’ lawyers who work ‘hand in hand with trustees to solve problems’. Clients include wealthy families, private individuals and their family offices as well as multinational companies, start-up businesses, established industry leaders and household names. In addition to advising on the preservation and structuring of private wealth, it works closely with its reputation protection team. Jonathan Burt and Chris Moorcroft co-head the department. Alasdair Wilson is another notable member of the team.
Jonathan Burt; Chris Moorcroft
Other key lawyers:
Siena Gold; Alasdair Wilson; Morag Ofili; Zoe Camp; Alexa Collis; Marianne Kafena; Gary Ashford; Caroline Rao
‘Having the right person to support trustees in managing highly complex trusts matters to conclusion is a art and Jonathan has an exceptional talent. He is able to assess relevant matters, find solutions and support in effective communication to stakeholders. Jonathan adds value’.
‘They have particular strengths in US/UK cross border work and in work for Middle Eastern clients. They also have a particular niche in handling difficult, knotty issues (which they tackle head on) which are at a pre-dispute stage and in dispute solutions’.
‘Jonathan Burt is exceptionally bright and thorough. In keeping with her name, Siena Gold is sparklingly bright, quick, knowledgeable, commercial, practical, strategic and delightful with it. She has impeccable judgement’.
‘Chris Moorcroft is understated, quietly sharp and incisive. Morag Ofili is a fiesty and robust litigator. Others of particular note include Zoë Camp, Alexa Collis, Marianne Kafena and Gary Ashford,’
‘Siena Gold and Morag Ofili are superb.’
‘The team is very thorough and knowledgeable, on a par with the best. Chris Moorcroft is very collaborative and helpful, and in a proactive way. I have found him very good on ESG principles for trustees.’
‘Solid team with strong leadership (Jonathan Burt) and several up-and-coming leaders in the field (Alasdair Wilson and others).’
‘Generally, an easy to work with firm. High quality without an over the top approach. Both Jonathan Burt and Alasdair Wilson are very strong as is Caroline Rao and others on the team.’
Alex Ruffel leads an innovative team at Irwin Mitchell, which is best known for its cross-border tax advice. It frequently acts for UHNW families and family offices on an array of tax and succession planning matters for UK-based entrepreneurs. It is also skilled at advising on cross-border succession matters and probates. The group has developed a Sharia-compliant wills practice led jointly from its London and Leeds offices, and this is attracting clients with a Middle Eastern connection. Ashley Hill is also recommended.
Other key lawyers:
Helen Clarke; Yousafa Hazara; Ashley Hill
‘Alex Ruffel is my go-to tax lawyer for private client matters in the UK. Excellent, pragmatic, no ego issues, very thorough and highly reliable’.
‘Excellent knowledge of specialist subject and good communication’.
‘Helen Clarke & Yousafa Hazara are both exceptional at their roles’.
James Ward heads the team at Kingsley Napley LLP. Over the past few years, Ward’s focus has been on business owners needing advice on their business succession or on the protection of their business interests. In addition, he is a trustee of a number of significant trusts and advises a wide range of family businesses on a variety of succession issues. Anita Gill is another key figure who helps individuals who have lost capacity and is often asked to act as an executor. Laura Harper is now a consultant and has a keen focus on international succession planning.
Other key lawyers:
Joseph Austin; Anita Gill; Laura Harper
‘The team now has quite a few solicitors who each tend to develop a specific expertise, either in estate planning or in administration of estate. They are very interested by international matters and understand that the differences between the legal systems lead to a need for adaptation’.
‘Joseph Austin: I have been working with him for many years now and he has very good technical skills and a great ability to adapt the administration of the estate to the requirements of an international matter’.
‘An excellent team to deal with. They provide high quality advice on time and within agreed budgets.’
‘Laura Harper is excellent to work with – and it does always feel like we are working together, as a team, rather than two separate advisers. I have absolutely no hesitation in introducing clients to Laura’.
‘The prompt response to queries, open and clear communication, a willingness to help wherever possible’.
‘James Ward – epitomises everything that a private client lawyer should be to their client and that a client should expect of their trusted advisor’.
The nimble team at McDermott Will & Emery UK LLP has particular strength in international tax matters. It frequently represents wealthy individuals and families, who are typically international and who have financial and family commitments, structures and assets that are located in multiple jurisdictions. Under the joint leadership of Simon Gibb and Nicholas Holland , it represents multibillion-dollar net worth families, structures and fiduciaries. There have been some changes to the team: Andrew Vergunst departed in December 2022, Ziva Robertson and Simon Goldring both departed in March 2023.
Simon Gibb; Nick Holland
Other key lawyers:
Abigail Nott; Astrid B Owen
‘The team provides a first class tax advisory and litigation service. They have great technical expertise in personal tax matters, including matters which have an international dimension. They are very good at dealing with trust and tax issues and personal matters such as residence and domicile’.
‘Simon Gibb is a well respected tax partner who has great technical expertise and gives sound advice. He has an in-depth knowledge of the taxation of offshore trusts and non-domiciled individuals’.
‘Simon gives clear, practical and measured advice and is good at dealing with HMRC. He is very efficient at dealing with matters and manages to turn around difficult questions promptly’.
Abigail Nott is very thorough at researching issues’.
‘Unparalleled expertise in UK/US tax and estate planning’.
‘Astrid Owen – cross border expertise with UK/Europe and US. Thinks outside the box and identifies issues early, from 20,000 feet’.
‘Simon Gibbs – technical expertise’.
‘Knowledgeable and efficient. Well spoken, speaks with authority on their areas of expertise, relationships are good’.
Under the leadership of Clare Archer , Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP is known for its strong international capabilities. It regularly assists UK resident and non-resident, non-domiciled individuals and international families as well as family offices and business owners on a broad range of issues. James d’Aquino specialises in tax, trust and succession planning matters. Ryan Myint is particularly sought after for UK-Singapore cross-border issues. At associate level, Tristan Smale is well-regarded. James Lewis was promoted to the partnership in April 2023.
Other key lawyers:
Tristan Smale; Elizabeth Nicholas; James d’Aquino; Ryan Myint; James Lewis
‘The best private client non-contentious team outside London, with a very strong London presence to compliment their offering. They are a pleasure to work with, combining responsiveness, technical ability, and charm in spades. They have a good client base who return to them and recommend them widely’.
‘Elizabeth Nicholas is a superlative private client partner who has everything that it takes to deliver first rate advice and to look after all her clients’ interests’.
‘James d’Aquino is an old school private client partner with charm, dedication and technical ability’.
‘The team offer experience with both UK clients and international clients.’
‘My dealings with Ryan Myint have been excellent. He is very experienced at dealing with complex issues and is willing to provide guidance to other professionals’.
‘Claire Archer is a fantastic lawyer, and leads by example. She cares deeply about her clients and colleagues.’
‘James d’Aquino is ferociously intelligent. He cannot be stumped on international issues. At the same time he appreciates the need for real world advice to help clients.’
‘Penningtons has a long history of giving trusted advice in this area.’
Victoria Fairley heads the department at Cripps, which is recommended for its work with a variety of wealthy clients ranging from those who have inherited wealth, national and international business owners and directors, through to agriculture and estate owners. In addition, it acts for a significant number of clients with cross-border interests. Jeremy Curtis covers all aspects of estate planning, including UK and international tax and succession. He also excels in advising on issues relating to heritage property, business succession and court of protection matters.
Other key lawyers:
Dominic Ribet; Jeremy Curtis; Greg Fletcher
‘A close involvement with clients leaves the firm well able to understand what the client wants and how to achieve it. Dominic Ribet is clear-thinking and practical’.
‘Jeremy Curtis has very broad experience with a variety of clients nationally, building long-term relationships and inspiring confidence in other professionals’.
‘Work is generally undertaken by individuals with appropriate skills, knowledge and experience for the client and the particular matter. The firm is very well-managed and has invested in sophisticated systems to offer a very efficient service. Fees are competitive’.
‘Jeremy Curtis – his practice has expanded in recent years with clients referred by a number of retiring well known private client solicitors. He is ably supported by Victoria Fairly who joined the firm from Radcliffe Le Brasseur with her practice who I have known for many years’.
‘Dominic Ribet is the senior associate who has been acting for me on various complex and sophisticated trust matters requiring close consultation with trustees and beneficiaries with tact and an ability to explain complex issues’.
‘Always a professional service and excellent response times. Friendly, efficient and professional in my experience…..’.
‘The private client team consistently provide a very high level of service to our clients. The team are very quick to answer correspondence with clear and concise legal advice or direction. The fees for the work done seem very reasonable for a London legal practice. They are a joy to do business with. Victoria Fairly, Greg Fletcher‘.
- Advised the trustees of two long standing family trusts with substantial assets, about a structural reorganisation and specialist advice pursuant to an application being prepared under the Variation of Trusts Act regime.
- Appointed Executor and Trustee of a large estate which comprised of a substantial share portfolio which the deceased managed himself through a trading platform, property in England and in Scotland, chattels, and a significant Lloyds underwriting business.
- Acting for four UK resident and domiciled individuals who have inherited a third of the shares in a foreign holding company. Advising on the most tax efficient way to hold the shares and in particular whether they can be held through the individuals’ own personal holding companies.
The highly regarded team at Fieldfisher advises international and domestic clients on personal tax, asset protection and wealth management matters. This includes the core work of wills, succession planning, trusts, estates, tax advice and mental capacity. Alongside this, the department advises on the specialised areas of private trust companies, offshore structures and other cross-border issues. Peter Golden is the practice head. Elena Tzialli and Alistair Robertson are among the other names to note.
Other key lawyers:
Elena Tzialli; Alistair Robertson
‘Excellent response time, good personal communication. In-depth expertise across the firm. Elena Tzialli: stand-out in terms of communications, expertise, and ability to network/call on others for areas outside her field’.
‘Very good at complicated international private client work, including but not limited to trust and estate planning business, cross border issues, complicated family succession planning and will writing’.
‘Alistair Robertson provides quick thoughtful responses that are well researched and quickly delivered’.
‘Elena is an absolute superstar and her knowledge, expertise and client care skills rival those who have been in her sector for decades longer than she has. My clients always rave about her’.
‘They’re a well diversified team with deep expertise in private client work and corporate clients. Their international network of offices and local capabilities are a strong differentiator’.
‘The level of professionalism and expertise of Alistair Robertson is outstanding in his field’.
‘The team at Field Fisher covers the length and breadth of private client work, but is particularly well known for its capabilities in trust and tax work, covering both domestic and international tax’.
‘Elena Tzialli is extremely personable, incredibly diligent and a delight to know, both personally and professionally. Elena is well connected, and she is always happy to introduce her contacts to each other’.
The private wealth team at Fladgate LLP, regularly advises on all aspects of wealth structuring and transfer. Under the able leadership of Jonathan Riley, it is well-placed to support HNW individuals and families, both in the UK and internationally, on a range of complex tax, succession, asset protection and private wealth management issues. The group represents over 80 family offices. It is also adept at advising active entrepreneurs and has a Middle East team that is skilled at advising on Islamic financing.
Other key lawyers:
Helen Cox; Helena Luckhurst; Mark Spash
‘Everyone I have worked with have been incredibly kind and approachable – not to mention knowledgeable! They are always available. As a lawyer myself, I would not recommend anyone else’.
‘Helen Cox is passionate about her work and her clients. She is always available to help and treats every client she has like they are her own. Helen is a joy to work with and I cannot recommend anyone else in this field’.
‘Quick response times to queries and requests for quotes. Work attended to professionally and I feel confident that clients I refer to the team at Fladgate will be dealt with properly’.
‘They go beyond to add value to answer questions on client cases and are proactive not reactive’.
‘Helena Luckhurst is very able‘.
Saleem Sheikh spearheads the department at GSC Solicitors LLP, which acts for international ultra-high-net-worth, often high-profile clients, such as oligarchs, significant families and owners of blue-chip companies. In addition, Sheikh is qualified as an arbitrator and mediator. James Cohen is also well-regarded for his work on wills, lasting powers of attorney, probate, offshore structuring, tax and other private client matters. Amanda Chapman left the firm in April 2022.
Other key lawyers:
James Cohen; Carey Xu
‘Great understanding of tax matters and tactics, very professional. Very professional and methodical, confident way of handling case work’.
‘They give an excellent service. Salim Sheikh has always been on the ball and very professional’.
‘I had a fantastic experience working with the solicitors at GSC Solicitor LLP. Their team consists of highly skilled professionals who are committed to providing exceptional legal support. The staff was attentive, responsive, and demonstrated a deep understanding of my needs’.
‘Working with GSC has been a standout experience, thanks to their exceptional individuals. From standout partners like James to dedicated associates like Carey, their team possesses unique qualities that set them apart from competitors’.
‘James showcased extensive expertise, clear communication, and approachability. Carey stood out with her attention to detail, problem-solving skills, and prompt communication. Both exemplified professionalism and dedication to achieving the best outcome’.
‘What distinguishes GSC’s individuals is their commitment to client satisfaction. They understand my needs, communicate transparently, and work seamlessly as a team. Their professionalism, integrity, and personalised approach inspire trust and confidence’.
‘Our family had very good experience working with Carey Xu and her team. They gave us very good advice on different scenarios and the correspondent measures. The application process was always smooth and we got the approvals swiftly’.
‘Carey Xu and her team took extra steps to ensure that we are well taken care of. I always felt anxious during the preparation and when waiting for the application results. Her team was very responsive and always gave very professional guidance’.
Herbert Smith Freehills LLP
At Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, Richard Norridge is at the helm of the private wealth practice. The department typically acts for prestigious ultra-high net worth individuals as well as institutions, family offices, private banks and trust companies on various complex and high value matters. These matters regularly involve multiple jurisdictions. William Turner was recently promoted to ‘of counsel’. Turner is a Solicitor Advocate with a specialism in both contentious and non-contentious private client work.
Other key lawyers:
John Mathew; William Turner
‘Richard and his team provide incredibly client-focused pragmatic and practical advice. They know the law inside out, but help the client to come up with solutions, not just information on what the legal position is’.
‘The team has a wide range of backgrounds and language capabilities so they can serve clients from around the world’.
‘Richard Norridge is always helpful and provides timely client-focused advice.’
'Super star' Dhana Sabanathan heads the department at Michelmores LLP, which ‘comprises highly knowledgeable private client lawyers with a high standard of responsiveness’. The group, which includes Sandra Brown, advises on all aspects of wealth structuring for UHNW individuals and their families who are based in the UK and outside of the UK. It has particular expertise in advising US connected clients and advising family-owned businesses. James Frampton is another significant member of the team. Jennifer Ridgway left the firm in October 2022.
Other key lawyers:
Sandra Brown; James Frampton
‘The team is full of great lawyers. They are also very fun to be around and easy to engage with’.
‘Dhana Sabanathan is a super star. She is technically excellent and a truly lovely person to work with. Her advice is very clear and comprehensive’.
‘Extremely good industry knowledge advice is provided in good time and in a format that is clear and concise’.
‘Dhana Sabanathan is technically excellent and commercially astute. She excels at business development through looking after her clients and going over and above for them’.
‘The team is very passionate about client service, very transparent on fees and very responsive. They are also very empathetic to client’s needs.’
‘Dhana Sabanathan is a top professional, very knowledgeable and thorough.’
‘James Frampton is not only an excellent tax advisor for individuals but also has a broad expertise when it comes to cross-border cases’.
The thriving private client practice at Osborne Clarke LLP is led by Stuart Janaway. It frequently acts for HNW/UHNW clients across the full spectrum of private wealth issues. Areas of expertise span international tax and estate planning, advising on UK and offshore trusts as well as on estate administration and inheritance tax issues. Andrew Goodman acts for UHNW international families, private offices, trust companies and banks on a broad array of matters. Bristol-based Shelley Faulkner is also recommended.
Other key lawyers:
Shelley Faulkner; Andrew Goodman
‘Practical advice, given in a timely manner, with a genuine desire to understand the client’s concerns’.
‘Shelley Faulkner was a standout performer for me. She demonstrated a great mixture of technical knowledge and practical experience and, most importantly, she really understood the pressure points for us as a business and worked within tight timeframes to help us reach our desired outcome’.
‘Shelley Faulkner was very professional, thorough and accurate and very good at explaining things’.
‘I deal with Shelley Faulkner on a day to day basis but sometimes things are referred to Andrew Goodman. I find them both really good to deal with. They are very approachable responsive and helpful’.
The nimble team at Seddons often deals with international HNWs who are highly mobile with assets in many jurisdictions. Stuart Crippin leads the offering, which has a particular focus on inter-generational wealth and making sure that the wealth passes on to the next generation, and the right members of the next generation, in a tax efficient way. Crippin regularly deals with high-value domestic and international estates as well as in UK tax and estate planning matters. At partner level, Lewis Edwards joined the firm from Hunters Law LLP in April 2023.
Other key lawyers:
Natasha Southam; Lewis Edwards
‘Good sized firm which is able to offer all of the full suite of legal services, but without the magic circle price’.
‘Stuart Crippin is very knowledgeable and approachable’.
‘The firm’s approach is fresh and collaborative with all professional client advice groups such as IFAs and accountants. It’s really encouraging to see this modern and appropriate approach to client work’.
‘Natasha Southam is a model of what the legal industry should be about. Client focussed and a professional delivery that all private client lawyers should have as a standard’.
‘Stuart Crippin is approachable and giving of his time. He gives good clear instructions’.
‘What stood out for me was that this was personal service, and one where we collaborated for the best outcome for the client. That gave me, and the client, confidence’.
‘What made Natasha stand out from the majority of solicitors is that she was quick to reply to emails, she was courteous and personable, she kept me informed of progress, and she copied me in on correspondence to the client’.
The ‘really knowledgeable and approachable’ team at Stevens & Bolton LLP is adept at advising high and ultra-high net worth clients on a variety of complex matters which often involve intricate holding structures, valuable and varied assets and cross-border issues. At the helm is Daryl Fox, who has a particular focus on estate administrations. Rosie Todd is well-regarded for her work where there is a crossover between private client and corporate structures and for her advice on the UK tax implications of offshore trusts.
Other key lawyers:
Rosie Todd; Matthew Peto; James Hardaker
‘Matthew Peto was extremely personable and helped us to deal with the matter in hand quickly and efficiently’.
‘Matthew Peto was extremely knowledgeable, clear thinking, and dealt with the complex restrictions already in place around the family business (company shares). He was very personable and provided us with reassurance and clear forward thinking’.
‘Very good all round team to work with. Communicative and inquisitive with client centric problem solving a key tenet of their service. Value for money, with tier 1 London advice at Guildford prices’.
‘James Hardaker – Exceptional communication and client management with a drive to put the client at the centre of his thinking and advise and then execute the best plan with buy in from all parties. I have recommended James on multiple occasions.’
‘The Stevens & Bolton private client team provide extremely high levels of service.’
‘James Hardaker is technically excellent and a calm and reassuring presence.’
‘Excellent quality of advice, delivered thoughtfully and with a real feel for what is important. Absolutely top drawer.’
‘I’ve recommended Rosie Todd to clients for years now, and when I needed advice myself, I went straight to her.’
The practice head at VWV is Angharad Lynn, who is skilled at international estate planning and administration. The group regularly acts as the co-ordinator on the administration of cross-border estates as well as receiving a steady flow of instructions on the administration of UK estates. In addition, the team has considerable knowledge of the European Succession Regulation. Through Lynn and Michael Knowles, the group has particular experience of dealing with advisors in France.
Other key lawyers:
Judith Cuxson; Michael Knowles
‘The firm is interested to develop international matters and the solicitors I have been working with understand that, because the legal and tax rules are often different, the solutions to be put into place therefore often have to be adapted’.
‘The team have always acted in a very knowledgeable and professional manner’.
‘Angharad Lynn is a great asset to the company and is highly respected within her field. I have always found her excellent to work with and would trust her judgement and advice on professional matters’.
‘Judith Cuxson and Michael Byrne – their key strength is their knowledge and experience, of trusts in particular, which I find invaluable. The team’s attention to detail and their clear, concise and timely communications make working with them a pleasure and incredibly rewarding’.
‘Strength in numbers. I am always assured when working with the team at VWV that my matter will be handled with prompt efficiency and technical excellence’.
‘Angharad Lynn is a generous and wise lawyer who is a pleasure to work with.’
Hugh MacDougald leads a versatile team at Winckworth Sherwood LLP, which enjoyed another busy year of advising wealthy individuals and family offices on a variety of international tax and estate planning matters. Tim Snaith is also a significant member of the team, which continues to be recommended by clients and intermediaries for its experience in high-end tax, trust, inheritance and probate issues. There have been changes to the team – Dhana Sabanathan departed in January 2023, while James Mabey was promoted to the partnership in April 2023.
Other key lawyers:
Tim Snaith; James Mabey
‘Excellent firm across the board. Have very knowledgeable practical fee earners who go about their business in a calm measured and civil manner’.
‘Partners of exceptional quality include Tim Snaith and Hugh MacDougald. Also James Mabey (senior assoc.) good’.
‘Often flying under the radar, this team has very high quality work which it handles adeptly and discreetly. Tim Snaith, very technically able’.
‘Tim Snaith is a solid operator’.
‘For me, the accessibility of the Partner along with the expertise shown and the adapting of that expertise to fit my family tax planning goals’.
‘Tim Snaith is so knowledgeable in his subjects of (Private Client) Wills, Trusts and Tax Planning. Not only that, he is personable. He has a great art of taking a very complicated Tax or Legal problem and making it easy to understand by the lay person’.
‘The personal client care provided by Tim Snaith and the broader team is outstanding’.
Colin Jaque heads the team at Axiom DWFM, which receives plaudits for being ‘collaborative’ and for ‘genuinely wanting to do the right thing for the client – there is no empire building’. At the London office, it specialises in wealth management advice, in international work and in advising charities. Amanda Chapman is another key contact – her clients include UK domiciled and non-domiciled individuals and families, family businesses, fiduciaries, family offices and charities.
Other key lawyers:
Amanda Chapman; Geoff Dennis; Olivia Cooper
‘Geoff Dennis guided me through every stage explaining in detail and advising me. Felt this was a firm I could trust. A solicitor and team I would recommend without hesitation’.
‘Mr Dennis and his team treated me with the greatest respect and courtesy throughout. Drawing up a new will involved a great deal of work in replacing an earlier will and two trusts. We also sorted out lasting power of attorney documentation, which was a great help’.
‘The practice have excellent knowledge of their subject matter and have a unique ability to explain this to the clients in a way that can be understood and demonstrate patience when working with older people, their families and health and social care professionals’.
‘I have only worked with Geoff Dennis directly. He has presented a calm, empathetic and kind approach to the clients, recognising when he needs to be directive and when he needs to be patient’.
‘Our experience has been with Olivia Cooper, she and her team have been thorough in the crafting of certain business structures and legal outlines we needed for cross border businesses and investments. They are outstanding in every way‘.
‘I work with Axiom DWFM because I have historically followed Amanda Chapman. She’s brilliant, she’s commercially minded, she’s helpful, she’s personable and all my clients love her. I refer my clients to Amanda because she solves their problems and makes me look smarter for having made the introduction’.
‘Olivia Cooper is prepared to stand up for what she believes in. Too many people in the City are too frightened to take a stand outside the crowd, but all successful investors have to be prepared to do this’.
‘Olivia Cooper is very welcoming and knowledgeable in her legal field’.
At Blake Morgan LLP, head of department, Helen Bunker does a considerable amount of complex advisory client work. Bunker regularly advises clients who are both UK and non-UK domiciled individuals, trustees and estates and also acts as a professional executor, trustee, attorney and deputy for a number of families. The team advises on a broad array of succession and tax matters and frequently acts for clients with multi-jurisdictional assets.
Other key lawyers:
Thomas Middlehurst; Karmen Ko
‘Thomas Middlehurst is a very candid solicitor. He works with his client’s best interest at heart and advises on a multitude of scenarios related to very complex matters. This helped us to make the best decisions at each stage of our litigation process’.
‘We work with a number of the solicitors at Blake Morgan. The whole team hold themselves to the highest standards and nothing but perfection will do’.
‘We predominantly work with Helen Bunker and Karmen Ko. The level of detail they require to ensure the correct decisions are being made is outstanding. No stone is left unturned. They are a joy to work with and demand the best’.
Peter Daniel leads an excellent team at Collyer Bristow LLP, which receives a steady flow of instructions from primarily UK and international entrepreneurs and business owners as well as the owners of UK landed estates. The skilled team covers the full gamut of wills, trusts, probate and wealth structuring work. There is also frequently an international dimension to its advice. Senior partner Daniel Simon has particular expertise in UK/US cross-border planning matters. Tulin Hamit focusses on work with Turkish HNW and UNHW clients. James Austen is another key figure.
Other key lawyers:
Tulin Hamit; James Austen; Daniel Simon
‘Communication is excellent, reply to emails promptly. James Austen is kind and thoughtful and very meticulous. All work well researched’.
‘Collyer Bristow have a well established team in the personal tax, trust and probate space, and have been particularly successful at bringing on trainees and retaining team members over time’.
‘Peter Daniel continues to stand out; a calm demeanour combined with a sharp mind making him an excellent advocate for his clients and trustworthy and knowledgeable source of advice’.
‘The bottom line is that this team cares deeply for its clients. That is what I have come to appreciate and what makes this firm stand out for me’.
‘Collyer Bristow is as solid a pair of hands as you are going to get. I think what distinguishes this firm from others is the high quality of each member of staff. They are all trained and expected to act with utmost attention to detail. This is very much a hallmark of a Collyer Bristow lawyer – an exceptional standard of service, across the board’.
‘Daniel Simon is the Senior Partner of the firm and he leads by example. He runs an extremely tight ship and is behind the firm’s unrelenting standards on all of its lawyers. Daniel has an ability to draw big clients whilst staying under the radar’.
‘The team are efficient, well qualified and attentive. Excellent qualities’.
- Represented Jason Wilkes pro-bono in his successful Upper Tribunal and Court of Appeal cases against HMRC concerning the “High Income Child Benefit Charge”.
- Advising a Singaporean-based billionaire, his family and the trustees of their family trust on all of their UK legal and tax matters.
- Acting in a domicile dispute in which the primary issue at stake is HMRC’s ability to “go behind” a previous domicile ruling, and issuing parallel proceedings for Judicial Review in the High Court and a statutory appeal in the FTT.
At Greenwoods Legal, Ian Bowyer is recommended for his work with wealthy individuals, families and business owners on issues as diverse as onshore trusts and probate work, through to taxation matters. Bowyer also acts as a professional executor and trustee for a number of families and deals with various complex and high-value estates that have heritage property. Clare Harris is the head of department. In September 2023, the firm took a nine-strong team from Ince & Co, including former practice head Matthew Biles.
Other key lawyers:
‘Ian Bowyer and his colleagues were unfailingly helpful and friendly, answering all the questions I raised, explaining the legal ramifications in a way that I could fully understand, explaining options to me and preparing detailed notes’.
‘Ian Bowyer has been acting for me, and I am extremely pleased with his services. He is very responsive and understands my concerns and my attitude to risk. He stands out for his careful handling, and clear (but not patronising) explanations’.
- Advising MD of a multi-million-pound family business in relation to transfer of shares to a family trust.
- Administering a complex intestate estate and advising widow on her IHT position and benefits of a deed of variation as a means of utilising the deceased’s nil rate band and achieving tax efficiency.
- Conducting estate planning for a client in his late thirties, who owns several businesses and has a blended family to consider.
The private client team at Keystone Law covers both onshore and offshore work. Alex Boothman is highly regarded. Barry Adamson focuses on high-net-worth individuals and their families and on how best to arrange their affairs to protect them for future generations. Luke Micallef Trigona advises on a wide range of issues from trusts, wills and lasting powers of attorney through to estate planning and trust structuring.
Other key lawyers:
Alex Boothman; Barry Adamson; Luke Micallef Trigona
‘Exceptional intellectual and legal skills. The interpersonal side is excellent and appreciated by clients who use them’.
‘The team have both youth and experience and have the flexibility to engage with clients and potential clients at all levels. The strength of the team is clearly evidenced by the client profiles they are able to deal with’.
‘Luke Miccallef Trigona for me is the stand out person, engaging professional and engaged at all times. Very competent and thorough. Pleasure to deal with’.
‘Barry Adamson is a leading individual. Broad capability, good value, highly discrete’.
‘Luke Micallef Trigona is experienced, gritty and highly international in outlook’.
‘In this team of private client lawyers a substantial number provide international private client advice and have a wealth of experience in this area, which is unusual for the majority of private client practices’.
‘Barry Adamson is extremely diligent and has professional international experience, which is deep and wide, is essential for this kind of work.’
‘ I value Barry Adamson’s experience, depth of knowledge and ability to cut through to the crucial point in his analysis. He is an excellent reader of family dynamics in potentially difficult negotiations’.
Alice Killingbeck heads the department at KPMG Law. She has developed a focus on integrated, cross-border advice for wealthy individuals, trustees and family offices. The practice has attracted work from a number of UHNW individuals and families with multijurisdictional assets, as well as from businesses seeking to establish charitable trusts or foundations.
‘I could not speak more highly of Alice Killingbeck. Her knowledge of the law and attention to detail is second to none. She is pragmatic, on the ball and a real pleasure to deal with. Highly recommended’.
- Advising a dual national who is resident in Switzerland and has £45m worth of assets in a number of jurisdictions on design and preparation of a global will structure.
At Mills & Reeve LLP, Sarah Cormack leads the London offering. She is well-regarded for her work with UNHWs and for her advice on international asset holding structures. Other strengths lie in advising on international family offices and on governance matters. Katharine Watson plays a pivotal role in the department as well, frequently advising on a wide range of succession planning matters for wealthy individuals and families.
Other key lawyers:
‘The team are very responsive, knowledgeable and helpful. They have assisted our clients with numerous complex cross jurisdictional tax, succession planning and estate administration matters’.
‘Nimble, do not have large central costs, pragmatic’.
‘Sarah Cormack is highly personable and a great client handler’.
‘International tax expertise within a national firm’.
‘I principally work with Sarah Cormack, who is a very knowledgeable lawyer, who is able to provide considered advice’.
At North Star Law, Benedikte Malling Bech heads an agile team, which typically advises multi-millionaires and some billionaires. Its core strength is acting for clients with origins from Scandinavia and the US. The firm is adept at advising wealthy individuals, their families, family offices and businesses. Consultant, Sarah Noake, is also highly regarded for her work in this space. Gita Patel specialises in UK probate matters, estate planning and preparing lasting power of attorneys.
Benedikte Malling Bech
Other key lawyers:
Sarah Noake; Gita Patel
‘Personalised service & dedication to the small tasks as much as the more important ones’.
‘Attention to detail & relationship builder, long term oriented, and bespoke care’.
‘The team is known for the exceptional quality of its service, and its work for HNW individuals, including international clients’.
‘Benedikte Malling Bech is hugely committed and goes the extra five miles! As a result she has earned herself a very loyal client base of HNW clients, but we also refer senior professionals, who are equally impressed, to her’.
‘North Star Law have a strong track record in serving clients with a Nordic background, and a good awareness of international issues in general’.
‘Sarah Noake is great to deal with. Helpful, calm and solutions minded’.
- Assisting a US Citizen and non-UK domiciled who has substantial assets in the US but no UK property and a high income stream due to work in the UK.
- Advising a US/UK married couple on how they own their property to minimise US CGT on a future sale by restructuring the ownership of the property.
- Advising a Scandinavian businessman who has an expanding business and approached the firm when he started considering relocating to the UK.
The ‘approachable, friendly and motivated’ team at Osbornes is led by Jan Atkinson. It receives a steady flow of instructions from high-net-worth individuals and families on an array of tax planning, wealth preservation, estate and succession planning issues. It also frequently advises on family governance matters. Clients include entrepreneurs, wealthy families and individuals.
Other key lawyers:
Samantha Tayler; Jenny Walsh
‘An efficient firm which provides an excellent service at highly competitive charging rates’.
‘I have been a client of this firm for a number of years and been impressed by particular individuals, the care and thoughtfulness with which they have worked. Jenny Walsh and Suzanna Baker’.
‘Working with Janet and Suzanna has always been a very smooth process. They render advice that is practical, often going beyond what was required of them and they respond very swiftly’.
‘Reliable and knowledgeable. They have always been very on top of things and given sound advice. Gives a sense of security when they are involved that matters will be dealt with efficiently’.
‘Suzanna Baker is very easy to work with. She has great knowledge on tricky areas and is practical and sensible’.
‘ Jan Atkinson is very client-focused and responsive, and seems very much on top of both the relevant law and of the details of my matter’.
‘A private client team offering a range of services to assist with private client matters including trust and probate services. A friendly approach with a keen eye for detail‘.
‘Samantha Tayler has been the key person for making a huge difference’.
Devorah Ormonde is at the helm at Ronald Fletcher Baker LLP . It is increasingly advising on the tax implications of lifetime transfers and on the creation and registration of lifetime trusts for tax planning purposes. As well as acting on the administration of estates worth several million pounds, Ormonde advises on cross-border tax planning matters for both domiciled and non-domiciled clients. Chris O’Callaghan is another name to note.
Other key lawyers:
‘Devorah Ormonde is very controlled and effective and able to give clear advice. Her focus and clarity to date have been impressive.’
‘Partners have been excellent through a long drawn out process – always explaining the position to protect me, ensuring I have all information required. Often listening to strategy and advising best solutions with risks explained for each. Very helpful’.
‘We worked directly with Devorah Ormonde on a cross-border probate and estate administration matter. She is responsive to queries and attuned to the culture and complexities of working with people from another culture and jurisdiction’.
‘Devorah Ormonde who is dealing with my father’s estate has been exemplary all the way through, and still is, kind and considerate and extremely helpful in everyway’.
‘Devorah Ormonde, excellent communication and helpful advice from the onset, carried out brief and instruction accordingly, extremely pleased with the professional manner the work was carried out’.
‘Ms Devorah Ormonde is very competent and knowledgeable and she provides my family and I with much needed very efficient and prompt service. I am sure that testimony applies to her team as well’.
‘I had to speak to Devorah on many occasions. She was excellent. She knows probate law inside out. She is extremely dedicated and hard working’.
Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP
The experienced team at Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP advises high-net-worth clients on a broad range of private client matters, both domestic and international. It has a particular concentration on US/UK matters. In London, Will Ford , Alexander Dickinson and Neil Long are vastly experienced in advising on wealth structuring and business succession planning for HNW UK and non-UK domiciled individuals. Long's clients are largely entrepreneurs with complex business and financial interests.
Other key lawyers:
Neil Long; Will Ford
‘US/UK practice is well integrated and therefore ahead of competitors. The UK team is based in several offices allowing geographic spread, as well as exposure to the Scottish market. In the US whilst the focus is on the East Coast, there are strong offices in several of the most vibrant states’.
‘The ability of the team to work across offices and across the Atlantic is a key strength and delivers value to the client. Transparency on billing, a strong record in promoting internally and working with professionals from different fields, again, differentiates the firm’.
‘In London the office is led by Alexander Dickinson who spearheaded the firm’s development of a London based Private Wealth practice and who in turn brought in Neil Long on the contentious side and Will Ford on the international side’.