Agriculture and estates in Wales

Agri Advisor Legal LLP

As the firm's name suggests, Agri Advisor Legal LLP is focused on advising farming clients across the spectrum of contentious and non-contentious matters impacting on their livelihoods. The majority of the 13-strong team, which is spread across the firm's Carmarthenshire and Welshpool offices, come from farming backgrounds and are thereby well-equipped to deliver legal advice with due regard and empathy to the often unique needs of the clients in the sector. Herself a farmer, Nerys Llewelyn Jones exemplifies this approach and is consequently 'excellent at cultivating long-lasting relationships' with clients who also appreciate her Welsh speaking capabilities. As well as her day-to-day work for clients on issues such as succession planning and agricultural tenancies, Llewlyn Jones is also 'very well-versed in advising on pure agricultural law matters', including as it relates to Common Agricultural Policy. The 'very knowledgeableManon Williams  has a particular forte advising farming clients on succession planning matters and is also continuing to develop niche expertise of tax in an agricultural context. Welshpool-based partner Rachel Phillips excels at advising on property-related matters for agricultural clients.

Practice head(s):

Nerys Llewelyn Jones; Manon Williams; Rachel Phillips

Other key lawyers:

Elin Owen

Testimonials

The team has an excellent relationship with clients, many of whom have agricultural livelihoods and who often are not technologically adept, or available during normal working hours. They also have an excellent command of the Welsh language, which for many clients is their primary language.’

Nerys Llewelyn Jones is very well-versed in advising on pure agricultural law matters and is excellent at cultivating long-lasting relationships.’

Nerys Llewelyn Jones is excellent. Broad knowledge, and practical, understands all aspects, and our family values. And how things work in this part of the world. Welsh speaking and community engaged.’

What singles Nerys Llewelyn Jones out as one of the undoubted leaders in the field of agricultural law is the fact that she is a working farmer herself which enables her to get to the heart of the client’s problems in no time.’

Manon Williams is very knowledgeable on farming issues.’

Work highlights

  • Advising farmers and landowners about all aspects of law, and in particular in relation to succession planning in terms of their businesses to include a review of their Inheritance Tax position.

JCP Solicitors

Benefiting from a 'deep understanding of, and interest in, the work and surrounding lifestyle of agricultural clients', JCP Solicitors is well-positioned to provide 'very practical advice' across the spectrum of their needs, including on common land and policy matters. 'Very accessible' team head Rory Hutchings has 'extensive in-depth knowledge' for clients in the sector, including National Farmers' Union (NFU) members, which continues to generate significant work flow, including as it relates to the dairy sector and common land issues. Praised for her 'willingness to go the extra mile', associate Alice Dearden Cobbett is a core member of the team, and is appreciated by agricultural clients for her empathetic approach, garnered in part due to her first-hand experience of rural life and her niche expertise in equine matters. Richard Howells  is an 'excellent and thoughtful litigator' and regularly handles highly agricultural contentious proprietary estoppel cases    as part of his role as head of the firm's lifetime planning disputes practice.

Practice head(s):

Rory Hutchings

Other key lawyers:

Richard Howells; Alice Dearden Cobbett; Beverley Bowen

Testimonials

‘I cannot speak highly enough about their professionalism, attention to detail, sector knowledge and customer care.’

‘A deep understanding of, and interest in, the work and surrounding lifestyle of agricultural clients is displayed by the whole team, allowing better and often more practical advice to be offered.’

‘All team members are excellent, but stand out members are Rory Hutchings, and Alice Dearden Cobbett, both of whom display extensive in-depth knowledge and empathy for agricultural clients and are always willing to go the extra mile to offer the best service possible.’

‘Rory Hutchings is very accessible, easy to speak to and provides clear advice.’

Hugh James

Although lacking a standalone agriculture practice group, Hugh James handles a considerable volume of work in the space under the umbrella of the firm’s private wealth offering, which is led by the ‘personable and intelligent‘ Matthew Evans. Much of this work is litigious and both Evans and ‘fierce litigator‘ Roman Kubiak regularly handle contentious probate and proprietary estoppel cases for farming clients. The firm’s broader property litigation and commercial property teams’ clients also elicit some work within the agricultural sector from time to time.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Evans

Other key lawyers:

Roman Kubiak; Eleanor Evans; Elizabeth Webbe; Andrew Jones; Caroline O’Flaherty

Testimonials

I was very impressed with the team on acquisitions of land. Many complex issues arose and were delt with efficiently.’

Elizabeth Webbe is expert at problem-solving in unusual and complex situations.’

Matthew Evans is personable and intelligent.’

Roman Kubiak is a fierce litigator.’

Caroline O’Flaherty is excellent.’

Key clients

Natural Resources

Welsh Government

Isle of Anglesey Council

Coleg Gwent

Work highlights

  • Advising Natural Resources Wales in relation to a very large area of agricultural uplands forestry land.
  • Acting for the family of a deceased North Walian farmer in relation to claims seeking to set aside the deceased’s last will by reason of lack of testamentary capacity, lack of knowledge and approval and undue influence, as well as a claim in relation to the deceased’s farmland and business by reason of a proprietary estoppel.
  • Advising a developer client on the acquisition of a ten-acre agricultural site for future development.

RDP Law

Regularly acting for local farming clients and also broadening the geographical scope of its work, in part due to its deepening ties with the Farmers Union of Wales, Newport-based firm RDP Law has a strong reputation in the market across a range of contentious and non-contentious matters private client, property and litigation matters. 'Very proactive' team head Sioned Thomas comes from a farming background and is consequently well-attuned to the specific needs of her clients, including as it relates to their estate administration and succession planning requirements. The 'pragmatic and empatheticJames Davies  also regularly advises farming clients as part of his broader real estate offering.

Practice head(s):

Sioned Thomas

Other key lawyers:

James Davies

Testimonials

They are one of the few firms locally with a good working knowledge of agricultural problems.’

The standard of understanding of our needs is second-to-none. The individuals we have worked with are very quick with solving our problems and we have always found it easy to be able to contact them.’

James Davies is pragmatic and empathetic.’

Sioned Thomas is very proactive.’

Key clients

Farmers Union of Wales (FUW)

Work highlights

  • Providing regular advice to the Farmers Union of Wales across a range of commercial, agricultural, real estate and litigation matters.

Red Kite Law LLP

Practice head(s):

Lucy Hollis

Lanyon Bowdler

Benefiting from already well-established ties with England and Wales-based farming sector clients, developed primarily from its Shrewsbury office,  Lanyon Bowdler has effectively solidified and expanded on the client base in mid and north Wales in the last couple of years by virtue of the launch of an office on Conwy in 2019.  A first language Welsh speaker, the 'very switched on and commercial' Edward Nutting is based out of Conwy and is the primary Wales-based contact for agricultural/rural clients, which are appreciative of his 'intimate knowledge and personal experience of farms.'

Practice head(s):

Edward Nutting

Testimonials

The firm covers a wide range of agricultural and private landlord legal matters. It always provides clear and actionable advice.’

Edward Nutting is the best private client and agricultural solicitor that I have worked with. His knowledge and attention to detail are first-rate, he regularly goes above and beyond to exceed expectations. He is personable and a Welsh-language speaker which is also extremely helpful.’

‘Edward Nutting’s advice is always clear and practical which gives the client courses of action, whereas other solicitors can often be vague or non-committal.’

Edward Nutting is very switched on and commercial.’

‘Edward Nutting’s intimate knowledge and personal experience of farms and estates is of massive benefit to us.’

Key clients

Baylis Farming Limited

Work highlights

  • Acting on behalf of Mr Tecwyn Jones and Mrs Janice Jones (who are well known across the UK for their success in the livestock sector) on the sale of their farm.