Firm Profile > Irwin Mitchell > Southampton , South East

Irwin Mitchell
BRUNEL HOUSE
21 BRUNSWICK PLACE
SOUTHAMPTON, HAMPSHIRE
SO15 2AQ
South East

Agriculture and estates Tier 1

The team at Irwin Mitchell provides specialist advice to private, commercial and institutional clients in the rural sector. Clients’ needs are dealt with 'under one roof’ on work which includes high-values tax planning advice and routine tax compliance work, trusts and strategic property advice. It also undertakes tenancies and property management work and assistance on asset structuring and succession planning.  James Pavey heads the practice in Gatwick. Iain MacLeod and James Letchford are also recommended.

Clinical negligence: claimant Tier 1

'An excellent office in a stellar national firm', the clinical negligence team at Irwin Mitchell has a particular specialism in high-value and high-profile birth injury, stillbirth, and neonatal death matters, and is led by Southampton based Justine Spencer, 'a go-to in the region'. Rebecca Brown is 'thorough, tactical and senior beyond her years' and has particular expertise in spinal injury and general surgical negligence, as well as group litigation. The team also benefits from the firm's public law practice group.

Contentious trusts and probate Tier 1

Irwin Mitchell assists clients with multijurisdictional tax issues, family businesses and governance matters. Asset protection and succession work also drive activity. In addition, the firm handles a steady flow of Inheritance Act claims, challenges to will validity, professional negligence claims and proprietary estoppel claims. Practice head Paula James specialises in complex trust and probate disputes, which usually have cross-border issues.

Corporate and commercial: Kent, Surrey, Sussex Tier 1

In addition to M&A mandates from private businesses and smaller PLCs, Irwin Mitchell attracts a range of private equity and venture capital work, with Dan Bastide leading the small cap group. Regional managing partner Faye Bargery, who 'runs a tight ship', is highly experienced in corporate and commercial matters, especially where private equity is concerned; Stuart Padgham overseas the commercial work and has a background in the IT industry, and Dan Hedley is well rated by technology clients.

Media and entertainment Tier 1

Irwin Mitchell acts for a wide range of clients across the media sector, specialising primarily in commercial contracts work, including branding and sponsorship deals, as well as the sale of media rights. The firm's client list includes large media estates and digital agencies, alongside a substantial base of private, high-profile individuals. Stuart Padgham heads the team, which includes senior associate and fellow commercial contracts specialist Aurelia Butler-Ball, and senior associate Thomas Barnard, who focuses on commercial litigation in the media sphere.

Personal injury: claimant Tier 1

The 'fantastic' personal injury team at Irwin Mitchell has 'a wealth of knowledge' in of brain and spinal cord injury claims, orthopaedic injury matters and fatal accidents. Key figures in the team include Claire Howard, who leads the serious injury group, Andrew Buckman, who specialises in claims related to the armed forces, and Nicola Maier, who heads the asbestos disease team. Managing partner Guy Darlaston has particular expertise in representing mesothelioma patients.

Personal tax, trusts and probate: Kent, Surrey, Sussex Tier 1

Irwin Mitchell's private wealth team is known for its ability to handle complex instructions. 'Exceptional in all aspects of her work'  Caroline Shelton leads the Crawley group and 'measures up to all that would be expected of a good private client partner'. This substantial group is home to experts in every aspect of private client work; the creation and restructuring of trusts, high-level trust administration and exceptional tax expertise. It advises trustees and on a range of high-value estates with UK and international assets. matters  and also advises national corporates on pension death benefit in service cases. Anthony Nixon is expert in inheritance tax and trusts and 'stands head and shoulders above any other tax lawyer'. Head of later life, Kelly Greig is highly rated for her abilities in dealing with complex issues of tax and succession, mental capacity and applications in the Court of Protection. Non-lawyer, tax specialist Michael Taylor  is also a highly rated member of the team.

Planning Tier 1

The planning practice at Irwin Mitchell is particularly highly reputed in mixed-use regeneration schemes involving former brownfield land, where it expertly bridges the gap between planning and development. The group, which is led by Carl Dyer, has recently had an increase in work from clients in the retirement living sector. James Pavey has expertise in contentious planning matters. Another key figure is Nicola Gooch, who is knowledgeable about the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) and town and village green issues.

Sport Tier 1

Irwin Mitchell's cross-practice team advises sport sector clients that include private individuals, companies, associations and governing bodies and the firm's private client team assists prominent sports figures and managers. Its comprehensive offering ranges from disputes and medical negligence to contracts, IP and wealth planning. Outside of the realm of professional sports the firm also acts for clients in the leisure facilities industry.  Dispute resolution specialist Hannah Clipston heads the team, while Michael Taylor is a key contact for tax, trusts and estates matters.

Banking and finance Tier 2

Irwin Mitchell focuses mainly on lenders, but also acts for borrowers, assisting clients with general commercial banking matters and secured lending to businesses. Expertise includes complex financings including real estate and development finance transactions. The team is well known for its specialism in the education sector. Daniel Webster heads the practice from the Gatwick office.

Commercial litigation: Hampshire Tier 2

Irwin Mitchell, which is highly active in matters with a cross-border component, is highly regarded by high net worth individuals, multinational companies and other household name clients. It has a notable focus on the sports, media, manufacturing, technology and financial services sectors. Hannah Clipston is an expert in breach of contract cases and associated complex tortious matters, with an industry specialism in sport and leisure. Associate Stephanie Reeves is also recommended.

Commercial litigation: Kent, Surrey and Sussex Tier 2

Irwin Mitchell has outstanding expertise in the financial services, manufacturing, tech, media and sports sectors and offers a strong national network of offices, thus being able to harness expertise in a range of practice areas. Robert Kenyon has many years of experience of High Court litigation and commercial disputes and Sarah Birkbeck specialises in IP, media and technology disputes. An impressive team of associates includes senior associate Robert Parks who is highly valued for his technical ability and commitment to his clients.

Commercial property: Kent, Surrey, Sussex Tier 2

Irwin Mitchell  provides a full real estate service that includes finance, construction and planning and has access to a national network of offices. It also attracts regeneration and mixed-use projects. Tina Webster is the highly rated team head who also heads the firm's education group - she deals with complex development projects, corporate re-locations and land promotions. The 'technically brilliant' Balbit Thandi  includes property investment companies and funds in her client roster, while associate Samual Knight is noted for 'getting good results'.

Construction Tier 2

Irwin Mitchell's 'responsive and thorough' construction and engineering team acts for clients across a wide range of sectors, including manufacturing, energy, public sector and residential development. In addition, the firm's specialist expertise in the education sector attracts numerous complex instructions from higher education institutions. Dispute resolution is an area of recent growth for the team. Practice head Mark Clinton has more than 30 years of construction law experience.

Corporate and commercial: Hampshire Tier 2

In addition to undertaking mid-market M&A, Irwin Mitchell's team also handles joint ventures and corporate restructurings. The team works across offices, enabling it to draw on firm-wide expertise in private equity transactions. Dean Drew is the name to note.

Insolvency and corporate recovery Tier 2

Irwin Mitchell's restructuring and insolvency team in Gatwick comprises  dedicated restructuring and insolvency lawyers who carry out the full-range work in the practice area. The team is headed by Andrew Walker who deals with both contentious and non-contentious matters, advising on high value and complex restructuring work. He has particular experience in restructurings involving defined benefit pension schemes and work involving banks and asset based lenders.

IT and telecoms Tier 2

Irwin Mitchell  provides clients with a range of commercial IT advice, and is particularly adept at handling business-critical procurements in highly regulated industries. Stuart Padgham heads the practice, and has a strong track record in the areas of high-value IT contracts. In addition to Padgham, the team is made up of individuals with substantial technical experience, including former IT professional Dan Hedley and software developer Chris Bridges.

Personal tax, trusts and probate: Thames Valley, Berks, Oxon, M4/M40 Tier 2

Irwin Mitchell’s private client practice combines expertise in trusts, wills and estate planning with in-house complementary tax advisory and compliance services. International tax specialist George Merrylees, who has recently joined the Newbury team from the London office, is experienced in advising on French tax and succession matters and is the key contact for Francophone clients. Practice head Sarah Phillips has a strong track record advising entrepreneurs, business managers and senior executives on protecting their business interests including advising on inheritance and capital gains tax and also advises on Court of Protection matters. Andrew Parry has expertise in tax and succession planning, with substantial experience of advising on matters affecting owners of landed estates and rural businesses. Senior associate Stewart Stretton-Hill is recommended for mental incapacity and Court of Protection work.

Commercial property: Hampshire Tier 3

Irwin Mitchell's Southampton team regularly works with the firm's broader real estate team in the Chichester and Gatwick offices to provide a wide range of expertise to clients. Its varied practice covers real estate finance, regeneration/mixed-use schemes, corporate occupier work and portfolio acquisitions and disposals. One of the key figures in the team is Tina Webster, who excels in complex residential and commercial development projects, large corporate relocations and land promotion. David Fanchi, who has a first-rate reputation in real estate finance, has built up a notable following of lender clients. Philip Gray and Robert Stangroom are also names to note.

Family: Hampshire Tier 3

Irwin Mitchell's family team is supported by the expertise of practitioners in the firm's other private wealth divisions, including residential property and trusts, tax and estates. Post-nuptial wealth protection mandates make up the bulk of the firm's work, with the majority of clients seeking to ring-fence inherited assets. Practice head Katharine Shaw is a key contact.

Employment: Kent, Surrey, Sussex Tier 4

Irwin Mitchell's Gatwick team is headed by London-based Sybille Steiner. It provides a comprehensive range of advisory and disputes-related expertise and it can call on experts in areas such as immigration, regulatory, safeguarding and pensions in addition to corporate and litigation teams. Senior associate Charlotte Sloan heads the Gatwick division and together with Matthew Irvine and Sarah Burke, serves an impressive range of clients from large PLCs to smaller regional businesses and includes a strong involvement with the education sector.

The firm Nationally acclaimed, and with strong international capabilities, Irwin Mitchell is one of the few law firms that provide a diverse range of legal services to businesses and private individuals. It has a strong customer facing culture, and impressive client retention levels.

The company, which employs over 3,000 staff, operates out of 15 locations in the UK and has a modern, agile workforce with more than 400 staff adopting formal flexible working patterns and a dress-for-your-day policy among other popular initiatives.

Irwin Mitchell has won 15 awards in the past 12 months, including a LawWorks pro-bono award, best training contract for a national firm, firm of the year at the British Wills and Probate Awards, corporate lawyer of the year at the Insider South East Dealmakers Awards, excellent in client service awards for both business and private clients at the Birmingham Law Society Awards and personal injury team of the year at the Northern Law Awards 2019.

On top of its commitment to reducing its environmental impact and providing pro bono legal advice to those who cannot afford access to justice, the Irwin Mitchell Charities Foundation (IMCF), the firm’s independent registered charity, has made over £2m of charitable donations since its formation in 1997. In 2018, the IMCF donated more than £280,000 to 13 good causes around the UK, through Irwin Mitchell’s Charity of the Year programme.

PRINCIPAL areas of work One of the largest law firms in the UK, Irwin Mitchell provides a wide range of legal and financial services to individuals and businesses.

The firm was the third most active litigation firm in the UK courts in 2018 and is ranked as one of the most active deal-making law firms for corporate M&A by Experian.

Its legal and financial services are complemented by an extensive client feedback programme which helps refine the offer to provide what clients truly value. This is one of the reasons that clients are increasingly using more than one legal service line from the firm across both business and personal teams.

Personal Injury: The firm continues to be the market-leading personal injury and medical negligence litigation team in the UK. It offers a wide range of services covering all of the key injury types, from road traffic accidents and international personal injury claims, to product liability claims and catastrophic brain and spinal injury cases. The firm also has a national public law team and the UK’s leading Court of Protection practice.

Private Wealth: Irwin Mitchell advises on a full range of private client matters including ultra-high-value family and divorce law, international tax and trust work, succession planning, rural estates matters, and high-value residential property financing and sales. Its prestigious client base includes high and ultra-high-net-worth individuals including business owners and entrepreneurs, high-level executives, investors and multi-generational families.

Services to Businesses: The firm offers a wide range of commercial services. Areas of expertise include banking and finance, commercial litigation and dispute resolution, construction and infrastructure projects, corporate and commercial, employment, environmental, insolvency, international, investigations and prosecutions, pensions, planning, real estate, recoveries, restructuring and tax. The firm also has strength in several sectors including manufacturing, TMT, financial services, consumer businesses, education, media and sport.

Subsidiaries: Irwin Mitchell’s investment management business (IM Asset Management Ltd) provides specialist fund management services for private individuals. It acts for a wide range of clients including high-net-worth individuals and personal injury claimants. IM Wealth Management, which is part of and owned by IM Asset Management, provides expert financial planning, helping clients of all ages prepare for their current and future financial needs.

Irwin Mitchell owns a full service DCA (debt collection agency), Ascent Performance Group Limited, which covers all types of debt across the UK and Northern Ireland.

Coris UK Ltd, part of the Coris Group, is also part of the Irwin Mitchell Group, providing a worldwide network of services to a range of independent clients in the travel and insurance industries.

Department Name Email Telephone
Group chief executive Andrew Tucker
Group chairman Glyn Barker
Chief executive, personal legal services Craig Marshall
Chief executive, business legal services Vicky Brackett
Group finance director Richard Allen
Photo Name Position Profile
 Rebecca Brown  photo Rebecca Brown
 Andrew Buckham  photo Andrew Buckham
 Hannah Clipston  photo Hannah Clipston
 Rob Coleridge  photo Rob Coleridge
 Guy Darlaston  photo Guy Darlaston
 Dean Drew  photo Dean Drew
 David Fanchi  photo David Fanchi
 Lauren Haas  photo Lauren Haas
 Claire Howard  photo Claire Howard
 Andrew Jackson  photo Andrew Jackson
 Nicola Maier  photo Nicola Maier
 Stephanie Reeves  photo Stephanie Reeves
 Katharine Shaw  photo Katharine Shaw
 Justine Spencer  photo Justine Spencer
 Kim Walker  photo Kim Walker
Number of partners : 249
Number of other UK fee-earners : 1,500+