Firm Profile > Macfarlanes LLP > London, England

Macfarlanes LLP
20 CURSITOR STREET
LONDON
EC4A 1LT
England

Contentious trusts and probate Tier 1

Macfarlanes LLP handles a substantial amount of high-value cases, which often run to hundreds of millions or billions of pounds. The 'first-class and highly respected international team of private client litigators' regularly deals with some of the largest structures that hold prominent businesses, sizeable property holdings and large cash and investment portfolios. It acts not just for individuals but also for whole conglomerates and their employees and multiple generations of families. Charles Lloyd heads the team, which acts for beneficiaries, spouses, trustees and financial institutions in addition to entrepreneurs. Other significant clients include individuals with hereditary wealth, protectors and those with significant roles in charities. Jonathan Arr currently has a particular focus on Bermuda, Mauritius, the Bahamas, Jersey and Guernsey. Elizabeth Doherty is well versed in all aspects of trusts disputes, with particular expertise in breach of trust and removal of trustees cases in addition to Public Trustee v Cooper applications.

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Testimonials

Macfarlanes is one of the big players with a hugely experienced team who have been there and done it all. The lawyers are used to working for the most high-net-worth clients and are totally unflappable. They just bring real authority and gravitas to what they do – it really makes you stop and think when they are on the other side

At Macfarlanes the lawyers are real chess players – always thinking so many moves ahead and examining the possible consequences from all angles

Charles Lloyd is the doyen in this field. He is totally unflappable, online at all hours in my experience, and immediately responsive. Jonathan Arr is a talented, clever and well-respected trusts litigator with a particular reputation for offshore work

Elizabeth Doherty is a superb new partner. She has her team performing at extremely high standards and thinks about every angle

Wonderful personalities who make complex, challenging matters a joy to deal with. The lawyers really know their stuff and can translate it into plain English for us to understand. They have great outreach to other leading advisers in other jurisdictions. They understand the commercial position and will give advice, not just sit on the fence and state the theory. Charles Lloyd and Elizabeth Doherty particularly stand out

One of the strongest firms in the field – a good crop of junior partners, trained and raised by the firm, and eager to tackle difficult cases. Jonathan Arr is steady and intelligent. Elizabeth Doherty is enthusiastic and willing to fight a client’s corner

‘Macfarlanes has been a leading trusts and estates firm in this country for years, if not decades. They combine an exceptional private client team with equally exceptional litigators in this area. It is difficult to think of a significant dispute involving a high-value trust or estate which they are not involved with in some capacity

At the very top of the tree when it comes to contentious trusts and probate.  The lawyers deliver an all-round superb service with no weaknesses. Charles Lloyd is a superstar in this area. He is unflappable and can bring home a great result for even the trickiest and most sensitive cases

Key clients

Marko Lehtimäki (founding member of CIFF – Children’s Investment Fund Foundation)

Investec Trust (Guernsey) Limited

Personal tax, trusts and probate Tier 1

Macfarlanes LLP is a 'Rolls-Royce organisation that can be relied upon to deliver at the highest level'. It frequently advises international entrepreneurs, family offices and owner-managed business on all private client matters. The team’s capabilities are also strengthened by its considerable expertise in philanthropic advice, litigation, immigration and high-value real estate matters. Practice head Piers Barclay has a wide-ranging tax and trusts practice with a significant number of Middle Eastern and Greek clients. He is adept at dealing with major cross-border US tax issues and has a particular strength in advising multi-generational families. Recent work highlights for the team include providing technical advice to private banks on their product offerings as well as acting in a major international estate administration.

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Testimonials

Piers Barclay is hugely experienced’

Macfarlanes is an exceptional organisation. Its professional knowledge, its global network, its ability to look three steps ahead, its breadth, depth and capacity, its commitment to the client, and the quality of its people and personal interaction at every level are unrivalled in my experience

‘Sebastian Prichard Jones is outstanding: he is exceptionally sharp and has that rare gift of making the complex simple. His instincts are spot on. His advice is precise and well contextualised. He is highly personable and good company. You could not wish for a better adviser. Mark Hunter is bright and considerate. He has an extraordinary capacity for work, and nothing is too much trouble

‘Excellent client service and relationship management. Charles Gothard is quite simply exceptional in all aspects thanks to his knowledge, team work and a great personality that makes working with him a joy. He is available at all times, night and day, and goes above and beyond client service. His wider team is also excellent

‘Nicholas Harries is very good technically and able to deal with a wide range of issues in the international private client arena, from commercial restructurings to complex family disputes’

Nicholas Harries has a deep knowledge of UK probate and tax matters, as well as cross-border matters. He is always willing to help and goes the extra mile for clients

Jennifer Smithson specialises in US/UK matters as well as matters with a French element. She is a creative problem solver, especially when it comes to structures that need to work in multiple jurisdictions

Isobel Morton is smart and understated – a winning combination

Private equity: transactions - mid-market deals (up to £250m) Tier 1

Macfarlanes LLP advises private equity houses on acquisitions in the high-cap and mid-market space, as well as advising management and working on secondary transactions and credit fund lending. The team works on standard buyouts, portfolio company M&A, public-to-privates, investments, and carve-outs, collaborating with international counsel on cross-border deals. Alex Edmondson leads the team and maintains  relationships with a number of key clients. Former PE head Stephen Drewitt continues to lead on a number of major transactions for sponsors and management teams. Ian Martin has retired.

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Key clients

Exponent Private Equity

Epiris

Glendower Capital

Caledonia

Hayfin

GHO

Charme Capital

Graphite Capital

August Equity

OpCapita

Retail funds Tier 1

Macfarlanes LLP advises many high-profile fund managers on the establishment and maintenance of retail products including internal policy issues, restructurings and financial services regulatory compliance advice. The team recently added Morgan Stanley Investment Management as a key client, and has also been active in advising private equity houses on the creation of new retail products, a notable development in the market. Lora Froud leads the team and is highly active within the space, advising clients on a variety of issues with particular expertise in UK and EU regulatory regimes. Alexandra Cochrane is now senior counsel, and works for major investment funds and managers on regulated and unregulated products.

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Testimonials

‘The team are approachable, responsive and offer commercial advice. They take a proactive approach and will personally reach out to clients to ensure that they are informed of all relevant legal and regulatory developments.’

‘It has been a pleasure working with Lora Froud (partner) and Sandeesh Shah (associate). They have provided us with clear and concise advice and are solution-orientated. The team is extremely dedicated and very responsive and were of enormous help in ensuring that the deadline for our most recent project was met. They continuously demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of our business and industry.’

‘Lora Froud is the lead partner and excellent – really pragmatic and clear.’

‘The depth of knowledge of the team is without equal, in our opinion. However, importantly, it is the manner in which the advice is delivered which is another key aspect for us. The team are great people to work with. Some of us have worked with the team for more than twenty years.’

‘Lora Froud (partner) – I have known Lora for a number of years, and she has both a broad and deep knowledge of fund regulation, and is an excellent problem solver, yet is extremely approachable and able to explain complex legal concepts in a straightforward and comprehensible manner. The quality of her and her team’s work is very high, and they go out of their way to deliver within required deadlines.’

Key clients

Goldman Sachs Asset Management and Goldman Sachs International

M&G

Jupiter Asset Management

BNY Mellon

Legal & General Investment Management

Quilter

Aberdeen Standard Investments

Majedie

Vanguard

Liontrust

Carne

Partners Group

Quilter Investors

Neuberger Berman

Lindsell Train

Commercial property: development Tier 2

On the development front, Macfarlanes LLP handles a range of projects including commercial, standalone residential and mixed-use schemes. Led by Anthony Burnett-Scott , the team is particularly knowledgeable of the public rented sector and undertakes a broad range of investment-related transactions, including those pertaining to hospitality assets. Commercial office lettings and asset management are further strengths for the group which is able to call upon the vast experience of Ian Nisse, a senior consultant well-versed in the structuring and financing of joint ventures, investment transactions and development projects. Another name to note is regeneration and mixed-use development expert Nick Barnes.

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Key clients

Stories

Berkeley Homes

Derwent London

Ecoworld

First Base

Muse Developments

Realstar

Stanhope

Commercial property: investment Tier 2

On the development front, Macfarlanes LLP handles a range of projects including commercial, standalone residential and mixed-use schemes. Led by Anthony Burnett-Scott, the team is particularly knowledgeable of the public rented sector and undertakes a broad range of investment-related transactions, including those pertaining to hospitality assets. Commercial office lettings and asset management are further strengths for the group which is able to call upon the vast experience of Ian Nisse, a senior consultant who is well-versed in the structuring and financing of joint ventures, investment transactions and development projects. Another name to note is regeneration and mixed-use development expert Nick Barnes.

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Testimonials

‘Clear and concise solution-driven advice delivered in a timely manner and focused on the client’s business needs, all within a reasonable price, something which is difficult to find in the market today.’

‘The team makes a real effort to understand the business landscape in which the client operates.’

‘A formidable team of lawyers with robust technical ability.’

‘Anthony Burnett-Scott is always accessible and a pure pleasure to work with. One to never over-promise, Anthony is realistic about delivering the right advice within a realistic time frame and is honest about that. A level of honesty that clients highly prize. Anthony is also perceived to be a leader in progressing support initiatives for BAME and LGBTQ lawyers, making him attractive to clients who are likewise looking to amplify these initiatives within their own structures.’

‘Anthony Burnett-Scott is a very safe pair of hands and a good negotiator.’

‘Macfarlanes has great in-depth knowledge of the market.’

‘Clare Breeze is very good at relationship-building, both with her clients and with the counterparty which makes negotiations collaborative and run smoothly.’

‘Dan Marriott is quick and capable and technically exceptionally strong, but also a good communicator and commercially astute. He is very available to his clients and is fully engaged with matters that his team are dealing with. It is clear that he mentors and supervises his team well, which is reflected in their performance.’

Key clients

Integrity International

Ecoworld

Brookfield

Canary Wharf

Realstar

Legal & General

Twenty14 Holdings

Supermarket Income REIT

WeWork Property Investors

Corporate tax Tier 2

Macfarlanes LLP has a strong non-contentious and tax advisory practice, with capabilities in transaction structuring, fund formation, group tax advice and operational taxes. On the advisory side, the firm has developed a niche in work for listed companies and financial services companies. Practice head Damien Crossley focuses on private equity and investment management tax, and works with Ceinwen Rees to advise the firm's key fund clients. Ashley Greenbank, who works part-time as a tax tribunal and deputy high court judge, continues to advise on domestic and cross-border corporate finance and M&A transactions. Mark Baldwin is experienced in the structuring of collective investment vehicles.

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Testimonials

Joined up with other areas of the legal team.’

Key clients

Hayfin Capital Management

Patron Capital

Bridgepoint Advisers Limited

Permira

Alcentra

Partners Group

Aermont

Astorg

Stanhope

L&G

Employee share schemes Tier 2

Robert Collard heads the 'excellent' share plans and remuneration team at Macfarlanes LLP. The team, which is part of the wider tax and reward department, advises on the full range of employee share plans and other incentive arrangements as well as key related areas such as employment, tax, trust law, corporate governance and financial services remuneration regulation. The team has recently seen an increasing amount of work relating to financial services remuneration, advising on regulations and incentives for fund managers. Clients range from large international listed companies, established private companies, financial services firms and start-up ventures to trustees of employee benefit trusts, as well as senior executives who are advised on the compensation and benefits arrangements they are offered by potential employers. Senior counsel Rasmus Berglund complements the team’s offering, in particular within the listed company and financial services remuneration space.

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Rasmus Berglund; Saba Palizi

Testimonials

‘Rob Collard leads an excellent team at Macfarlanes. The combination of a very strong tax team (that covers employee tax) and a transactional mindset makes the team one of the best available.’

‘Super responsive and also business savvy.’

Key clients

J.D. Wetherspoon plc

Revolution Bars plc

XPS plc

Virgin

Stonehage Fleming

Helios Towers

Epic private equity

Smith & Williamson

Improbable

Exotix

eTender

Hogg Robinson

Genius Sports

IGT plc

Financial services: contentious Tier 2

Macfarlanes LLP is known for its 'focus, strategic thinking and precision' in cross-border regulatory advice and global investigations, as well as market abuse matters. The firm has experience acting for a broad client base that includes banks, inter-dealer brokers, trading exchanges and corporates. The ‘pragmatic and effectiveMatt McCahearty handles complex litigation, investigations and regulatory enforcement. He co-leads the practice with Dan Lavender, who specialises in city and financial services litigation and investigations. Also notable is senior counsel Aalia Datoo, who focuses on complex financial litigation and regulatory investigations for banks and financial institution clients.

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Testimonials

‘Very commercially astute, backed up by first class legal knowledge and good strategic decision making’

‘Matt McCahearty provides an excellent service. Clever, commercial, hard working and easy to work with’

‘The team is a group of talented lawyers who have deep understanding of the industry as well as expertise dealing with contentious work before various regulators and courts’

‘Matt McCahearty is a great litigator. He is particularly good at cross-border cases which involve multi-jurisdictional issues’

Key clients

Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS)

British Bankers’ Association (BBA)

FICC Markets Standards Board

Fraud: civil Tier 2

Macfarlanes LLP's 'very professional' team specialises in commercial, private wealth and banking fraud, with a particular focus on cases originating in Russia, Ukraine and the CIS. The practice is also well-known for its litigation funding work, having advised several funders on the structuring of their largest funding deals. The 'strategically brilliant' James Popperwell has a strong track record in a diverse range of international fraud claims, encompassing bribery, corruption, money-laundering and insolvency. Barry Donnelly has a wealth of expertise in investigations and litigation proceedings involving UK and overseas regulatory bodies, such as the FCA, the SFO and the DOJ. Associates Joanna Constantis and Nikolas Ireland are also key members of the team.

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Testimonials

‘James Popperwell, thanks to the efficiency and experience of his team, has been able to provide our clients with advice that has ultimately saved them from incurring unnecessary cost and allowed them to make properly informed decisions. James is also a world-leading expert on litigation funding.’

‘James Popperwell is both into the details and brilliant at seeing the big picture of things. Very pleasant to work with.’

‘James Popperwell is a lawyer of exceptional professional qualities and knowledge. I enjoyed working with him.’

‘Nikolas Ireland and Joanna Constantis are both very professional lawyers; smart, attentive to details and with excellent analytical skills.’

Key clients

Vitaly Orlov

AlixPartners

Primekings Limited, Robin Fisher, Geoff Ziedler, Barry Stiefel

Vitaly Orlov

British Bankers’ Association

BDO

United Company Rusal

Fraud: white-collar crime (advice to individuals) Tier 2

Macfarlanes LLP continues to go from strength-to-strength in the white-collar arena and is currently instructed by clients in some of the highest profile SFO cases. With a large private wealth team, the firm acts for a number of high-net-worth individuals, alongside senior executives, members of family offices and entrepreneurs. It is noted for its expertise in criminal investigations, prosecutions, extradition proceedings and contentious matters.The 'established and very-well respectedNeill Blundell is highly recommended for matters involving fraud, financial crime, bribery and corruption, money laundering, facilitation of tax offences, insider dealing, market abuse, unexplained wealth orders and cartel offences.

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Testimonials

‘The Macfarlanes crime and investigations department is really making waves in this field, garnering some of the highest profile individuals and dealing with them with quiet efficiency’.

‘Neill Blundell brings gravitas to his mandates and commands the respect of individual HNW clients who are more used to being in the driving seat themselves’.

‘Neill Blundell is a good team player who’s clearly respected by his team and by colleagues within the industry’.

‘Neill Blundell is calm and unflappable as well as having considerable charm’.

‘Lorna Emson works with integrity, and efficiency’.

‘The legendary rigor and excellence that the Macfarlanes name evokes has very quickly come to include the corporate crime and investigations practice, which coalesced at the arrival of Neill Blundell’.

‘Neill Blundell is a truly exceptional attorney with tremendous experience handling significant internal investigations and criminal litigation for individuals and corporations’.

‘The team is developing a strong reputation for its effective representation of clients in complex criminal proceedings and internal investigations’.

Key clients

Judith Shepherd (Deputy GC) of Barclays Plc

Michael Curtler

Fund finance Tier 2

Macfarlanes LLP is active in fund financing across a wide range of asset classes, including private equity, credit, infrastructure, and hedge funds. The team has experience in an array of products and issues, such as capital calls, NAV facilities, co-investments, and tax structuring. The firm acts for a number of major banks and financial institutions as both lenders and investors, as well as investment fund sponsors and managers. 'First-class' practice head Andrew Perkins is a highly experienced fund finance practitioner, with extensive lender-side relationships and broad expertise across the space. Richard Fletcher acts for financial institutions and corporates, with a particular specialism in securitisation.

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Testimonials

First-class knowledge of the sector and proactive, concise advice delivered by both Alex Pickett and Andrew Perkins. Strong and regular visibility from Andrew Perkins.

Alex Pickett and Andrew Perkins have the sector expertise to identify in advance, allowing them to deliver their advice alongside the issue.

They have demonstrated, on several occasions, that they have our best interests at heart. They work efficiently, diligently, and communicate well with all parties involved. We are very pleased to have found this practice that has thus far offered us the best combination of commercial acumen, technical skills, and communication ability. As a client, we are under the impression that there is a good internal dynamic from partners to trainees, whereby each works hard but doing so respectfully of others.

Richard Fletcher is the soft but strong hand at the helm that allows others within the team to contribute to clients right away, whilst also growing into the next generation of senior solicitors.’

Key clients

Montagu Private Equity

Quilam Capital

Muzinich

Regulatory investigations and corporate crime (advice to corporates) Tier 2

Macfarlanes LLP offers advisory expertise in all areas of financial crime, including bribery, fraud and anti-money laundering. The team also handles POCA issues, compliance matters and sanctions. It is well versed in a broad spectrum of sectors, including financial services, manufacturing and luxury brands. 'Stand out performerNeill Blundell, who heads the practice, is a well-regarded white-collar practitioner who is experienced in FCA, NCA and SFO investigations. Barry Donnelly is recommended for financial litigation, arbitration, international disputes and investigations. James Popperwell handles civil fraud proceedings and criminal matters.

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Testimonials

‘The team attracts very high-quality work and hits above its weight’.

‘They are usually involved in leading investigations, dealing with them discreetly and efficiently to achieve the best result for the client’.

‘Their justified reputation ensures a steady flow of “big name” clients’.

‘Neill Blundell, as team leader, is an impressive departmental head, down-to-earth yet rightly respected both within the profession and by clients’.

‘Neill Blundell’s relaxed approach makes him a pleasure to work alongside’.

‘Since joining Macfarlanes, Neill Blundell has built a very loyal and increasingly well-regarded team around him which bodes well for the firm’s future’.

‘A team that are a safe pair of hands to deal with the range of corporate issues that arise’.

‘Neill Blundell is clearly at the top of his game – he has an excellent understand of the various facets of financial crime and demonstrates great leadership qualities’.

Key clients

The 200+ member banks of the British Bankers’ Association (BBA)

BBA LIBOR Ltd

Tax litigation and investigations Tier 2

Under the leadership of 'class-actGideon Sanitt, the team at Macfarlanes LLP appears before tax tribunals and civil courts in relation to direct and indirect tax disputes involving UK and EU law. Although the majority of clients are corporations, the group has a strong private client practice, where it acts for high-net-worth individuals in matters involving cross-border tax arbitrage trades and disputes involving UK and offshore trusts. The tax department often draws on the expertise of lawyers from other departments and senior counsel Joanna Constantis, who is a commercial litigator, has 'a brilliant legal brain'. Senior solicitor advocate Ben Webster is another noted tax litigator with both corporate and private client experience.

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Testimonials

The most on point of the tax litigation teams we have worked with and the most engaged. Good at communicating at various levels.’

Very strong practice, good depth of knowledge.’

Gideon Sanitt is a class act. Dedicated to his clients. Supremely clever and charming to boot.’

Joanna Constantis has a brilliant legal brain. Her drafting goes straight into the court documents and she comes up with creative arguments which are compelling.’

Key clients

Royal Mail

CDC Administration LLP

Banking litigation: investment and retail Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP' financial services and markets dispute resolution team handles domestic and cross-border litigation, regulatory disputes, enforcement actions and investigations. The group attracts praise for providing 'solid practical advice' and counts major banks, asset managers, inter-dealer brokers and trading exchanges among its diverse client base. Barry Donnelly, a 'very experienced litigator in the banking field' with experience in transatlantic disputes, leads the team alongside Dan Lavender and head of dispute resolution, Matt McCahearty, who handles commercial litigation, investigations and regulatory enforcement.

Testimonials

‘Solid practical advice that is tailored to the client and provided efficiently.’

‘Barry Donnelly – old world charm but extremely tough underneath it. He brings a wealth of knowledge to his cases’

‘Good profile in the field’

 

Key clients

Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS)

FICC Markets Standards Board (FMSB)

British Bankers’ Association (BBA)

Libyan Investment Authority (LIA)

Firth Rixson group

Commercial litigation: premium Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP offers 'invaluable strategic and substantive advice' to entrepreneurs, senior executives, shareholders, private clients and corporates in disputes. The group 'works well with other departments', including on tax and white-collar crime issues, and has particular experience in the automotive, financial services, hotels, IT, and mining sectors. The 'outstandingMatt McCahearty took over as head of the department from the 'cool, calm, strategic' Iain Mackie (who remains at the firm and handles financial services sector disputes, including cases relating to private equity investments). 'Brilliant lawyer' Lois Horne is a name to note for shareholder and contract disputes, while Simon Nurney has experience across corporate, commercial and construction disputes and class-actions. Senior solicitor Christopher Charlton specialises in cross-border issues including issues of jurisdiction and enforcement.

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Testimonials

Quiet, measured and with a strong attention to detail. They think carefully before they shoot! … but every bullet counts.

Extremely well-versed and competent, both substantively and tactically (the latter of which is virtually as important as the law). 

The partners are absolutely on top of the details of the case. This enables them to give invaluable strategic and substantive advice rather than helicoptering above a case being run by others.’

Lois Horne is a stand out partner. She is a brilliant lawyer, prepares meticulously and tactically is always one step ahead. You want her on your team’

‘Max Hobbs is a super-bright and effortlessly charming associate. One to watch.

Iain Mackie is cool, calm, strategic. His level head and careful analysis has been a great benefit to me.’

‘Extraordinarily effective as a bridge to the barrister. The distinguishing feature is that Macfarlanes is able to bring out the absolute best in barrister support to the benefit of the client and the matter

‘Matt McCahearty is outstanding

Key clients

Better Capital LLP

The State of Qatar

Tony Matharu (Grange Hotels)

Elegant Hotels Group Ltd

SAS Institute Inc.

BDO

Nederlandse Industrie Van Eiproducten

Liverpool Football Club

United Company Rusal

Libyan Investment Authority

Avon Products

The Royal Bank of Scotland

Sir Robert McAlpine and Balfour Beatty

Exotix Partners

Commercial property: corporate occupiers Tier 3

On the development front, Macfarlanes LLP handles a range of projects including commercial, standalone residential and mixed-use schemes. Led by Anthony Burnett-Scott, the team is particularly knowledgeable of the public rented sector and undertakes a broad range of investment-related transactions, including those pertaining to hospitality assets. Commercial office lettings and asset management are further strengths for the group which is able to call upon the vast experience of Ian Nisse, a senior consultant who is well-versed in the structuring and financing of joint ventures, investment transactions and development projects. Another name to note is regeneration and mixed-use development expert Nick Barnes.

Testimonials

‘Clear and concise solution-driven advice delivered in a timely manner and focused on the client’s business needs, all within a reasonable price, something which is difficult to find in the market today.’

‘The team makes a real effort to understand the business landscape in which the client operates.’

‘A formidable team of lawyers with robust technical ability.’

‘Anthony Burnett-Scott is always accessible and a pure pleasure to work with. One to never over-promise, Anthony is realistic about delivering the right advice within a realistic time frame and is honest about that. A level of honesty that clients highly prize. Anthony is also perceived to be a leader in progressing support initiatives for BAME and LGBTQ lawyers, making him attractive to clients who are likewise looking to amplify these initiatives within their own structures.’

‘Anthony Burnett-Scott is a very safe pair of hands and a good negotiator.’

‘Macfarlanes has great in-depth knowledge of the market.’

‘Clare Breeze is very good at relationship-building, both with her clients and with the counterparty which makes negotiations collaborative and run smoothly.’

‘Dan Marriott is quick and capable and technically exceptionally strong, but also a good communicator and commercially astute. He is very available to his clients and is fully engaged with matters that his team are dealing with. It is clear that he mentors and supervises his team well, which is reflected in their performance.’

Competition litigation Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP is consistently engaged in standalone competition cases and follow-on damages actions. The team finds itself at the forefront of UK-based litigation in the pharmaceutical industry; Cameron Firth is considered by clients to be ‘ideal for the current wave of competition cases in the pharma sector’. Malcolm Walton leads the department, where recently promoted partner Simon Day is also noted.

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Testimonials

High-quality commercial advice provided efficiently

Technically gifted lawyers who act commercially too.

This is a competition team rising in prominence among City litigators with its successful representation of Flynn in the headline phenytoin litigation.

Cameron Firth has a unique combination of in-depth knowledge of competition law and wide experience of pharmaceutical regulation, which makes him ideal for the current wave of competition cases in the pharma sector. His polite exterior conceals a ferocious intellect. He is also a delight to work with.

Cameron Firth and Simon Day have extremely detailed knowledge of the relevant law, which they are able to quickly apply to the facts in order to provide high-quality advice.

Cameron Firth is excellent – he has a wealth of experience and good client skills.

Key clients

Flynn Pharma

RBS

Prysmian SpA

Mylan SAS / Actavis UK

Construction: contentious Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP advises a wide range of clients including developers, investors, housebuilders, occupiers, contractors, institutions and banks, handling a variety of contentious construction matters. The team well-regarded for providing 'a first-class, hands-on partner service.' Mark Lawrence has a strong track record on construction, engineering and infrastructure disputes, taking cases to the High Court, the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. Team head Douglas Wass acts on PFI disputes in relation to projects such as hospitals, roads and universities.

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Testimonials

‘Macfarlanes has been helping us through a very contentious construction project with a side variety of delay and disruption claims. They are fully understanding of the letter of the law (and regulations) but also the personalities on both sides of the dispute.’

‘A great, relatively small team, good collaborative working ethos and team spirit. Hardworking but always with a positive attitude even when under pressure.’

‘Excellent knowledge at all levels in the company. Reliable quick responses to queries and measured and well thought through advice.’

‘Mark Lawrence has been an effective sounding board, letting the frustration flow (internally) while helping to distill the outbound message to a more-appropriate dispassionate tone. It has been a pleasure to work with Mark.’

‘Calm and very easy to communicate with, even with difficult messages. They build up a solid feeling of trust.’

‘Doug Wass and Andy Mather both provide a first-class, hands-on partner service. Everything said and done is carefully thought-through and well researched.’

Key clients

Catalyst Healthcare (Manchester) Limited

Grove Developments Limited

Aggregate Industries

Legal & General

Stanhope

Weston Homes

Brookfield

Realstar

European Land

Kohn Pedersen Fox

Global Switch

Construction: non-contentious Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP assists a premium roster of clients, which include developers, investors, house builders and banks, on a range of non-contentious matters relating to real estate, energy and infrastructure projects. Angus Dawson heads up the team - which is praised for being 'good at building personal relationships' - and is noted for his advice on lease, development and funding agreements.

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Testimonials

‘Macfarlanes are a professional firm and attentive to us as a client.’

‘Very friendly and good at building personal relationships.’

‘Angus Dawson and Alex Crockford are very thorough, understand our business, have a no-nonsense approach and understand the markets.’

‘Angus Dawson is a good negotiator.’

Key clients

Legal & General

Stanhope

CIT

Realstar

First Base

EcoWorld

Royal Marsden NHS Trust

Equity capital markets - low-mid cap Tier 3

Led by Robert BoyleMacfarlanes LLP team provides a full service to issuers, underwriters, sponsors, management teams and trustees, among other clients. It is sought out for advice on AIM and Main Markets IPOs, and also handles a full range of secondary fundraisings, including rights issues, open offers and placings. Dual track processes are another area of strength.

EU and competition Tier 3

The experience of Macfarlanes LLP’ ‘professional and thorough’ competition team spans multi-jurisdictional merger control advice, state aid, compliance and investigations by UK and EU regulators. Alongside its acclaimed work in the pharmaceutical sector, the group is also very active in the media, financial services, manufacturing, retail and consumer goods sectors. Malcolm Walton leads the practice, where clients also single out Cameron Firth, senior counsel Fiona Beattie and Tom Usher.

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Testimonials

A very professional and thorough team

Macfarlanes’ lawyers have unparalleled expertise, they are calm and unruffled, quite simply the best in the business.

The team is very knowledgeable, flexible and responsive whenever we need support, both on self-contained matters which need quick advice or longer-term projects..

Macfarlanes’ competition team delivers advice of exceptionally high quality. Tom Usher deserves a special mention. Tom combines crystal clear commercial advice with a fantastic and friendly approach to client service. It is a delight to work with him.

Malcolm Walton is a strong leader and is developing the practice very well.

Cameron Firth is highly commercial in his advice, but will not sugar-coat it when he thinks the risk profile is problematic. He is excellent with senior colleagues because he is decisive and clear in his advice but also really open to challenge and can absorb a lot of pressure.

Fiona Beattie will always bring a lot of creative thinking to our issues, particularly as she knows our business really well. She is a great team player, endlessly good-humoured and clear in her advice, even when events are moving quickly.’

Hedge funds Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP acts for a number of major fund managers and institutional investors across Europe, advising on fund structurings and investment strategies. The team also notably works with start-up managers, with particular expertise in the formation and structuring of alternative credit funds, aided by in-house tax and regulatory capabilities. Practice head Sam Brooks advises open and closed-ended hedge funds, which are active across a range of asset types and liquidities.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

‘Solid knowledge of UK law, efficient process and high quality of work products. Very good value for money.’

‘Sam Brooks’ team is knowledgeable about UK law, commercial-minded and able to accommodate the client’s business needs to propose viable solutions. Efficient and quick turnaround, work product is of high quality.’

‘Sam and team have been extremely responsive to all of our queries, and have taken an approach that is extremely sensible (including commercially) when working with us, as opposed to simply following the steps out of a playbook. Particularly for a new business like ours, it is essential that our legal advisers are sensitive to the limitations and constraints we face at this point in time, while maximising the flexibility and functionality that we also need – which the team has been excellent at doing.’

M&A: upper mid-market and premium deals, £500m+ Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP has a longstanding reputation advising blue-chip clients on complex M&A mandates, with a focus on public M&A deals. The firm, where  Howard Corney and Luke Powell  co-lead the practice, makes use of its network of overseas firms on international matters. It received a boost in 2019 with the hire of former Ashurst partner Robert Ogilvy Watson  as a partner in the M&A team.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

Good ability to work through considerable legal and corporate finance complexity in the context of a transaction, rather than solely focusing on the academic legal aspects’

‘Able to clearly present and guide their clients through the solutions

Private funds (including infrastructure funds) Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP works prolifically with domestic and international private equity managers on fundraising and equity management matters, advising on innovative products in the private and retail markets. The practice also advises a number credit and preferred equity managers, as well as offering integrated tax advice and expertise in pan-European strategies. The practice is led by Stephen Robinson, who advises private equity, venture capital, infrastructure, and credit funds on structuring and operational matters. Christopher Good is recognised for his fund formation work, advising a number of sponsor clients including AlpInvest and Hollyport. Senior associate Harriet Miller advises sponsors and investors on fundraising matters.

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Testimonials

Commercial, responsive and able to engage with the particular requirements of a fund, rather than simply rolling out the same as the last one. Crystal clarity in their drafting and strong awareness of potential pitfalls and how to avoid them. Supported by a stellar tax team.

At partner level, I would call out Stephen Robinson and Damien Crossley (tax) for particular praise in relation to unregulated funds.

The firm has very strong junior lawyers, who provide an unfailingly excellent service at tremendous value for money relative to peers.

Knowledgeable, professional but personable. A real desire to solve problems for clients.

Chris Good is just great to work with. He’s smart, protects your interests and is always a pleasure to wok with.

Macfarlanes’ Private Funds team is extremely well placed to provide excellent support to UK mid-market participants. The heritage and long term relationship provide strong context, and advice is delivered in a professional and commercial way. The Macfarlanes team is stable and able to cultivate long term relationships with its clients and build on these over multiple funds.

Stephen Robinson is outstanding. His understated nature belies an incomparable understanding of mid-market managers, market standard terms, LP demands and the true importance of issues raised. His advice is always based on a strong technical understanding but is balanced and commercial. He is responsive, available and consistent. He is supported by a strong team.

Harriet Miller is a rising star and definitely one to watch for the future.

Key clients

Hollyport Capital

Alcentra

Muzinich

17Capital

Aberdeen Standard Investments

Cross Ocean Adviser

Hayfin Capital Management

August Equity Partners

Novalpina

Ancala

Property finance Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP mainly advises on the acquisition and development of build-to-rent schemes, student accommodation and hotels, with a growing emphasis on the green lending space. The team is led by Colin Morgan and Clare Breeze, who both advise borrowers and lenders on the above-mentioned asset classes, often in matters with cross-border elements. They are supported by Jat Bains, who is notably strong in fund raising for real estate portfolios.

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Testimonials

‘When we have dealt with Macfarlanes, they have been responsive and a pleasure to deal with. They offer strong advice, taking sensible views when required.’

‘Strong connection and good coordination between the various real estate teams (ie property, property finance, construction, tax, etc). Colin Morgan has been great to deal with, working well with the various teams.’

‘The right level of engagement, knowing when to lead and when to leave it to their strong line-up of associates. Responsive and fun to deal with. Really strong team, well diversified.’

‘Clear and concise and very easy to deal with. Strength in depth in a partner-led team. Always calm, composed and always able to give clear, technical advice in the context of the commercial position.’

‘Colin Morgan is unflappable and always a pleasure to work with.’

Key clients

Canary Wharf Group

ING Bank N.V.

Genting Casinos

WeWork Property Investors

Venn Partners LLP

Realstar Group

Supermarket Income REIT

Lulu International

Covivio

Westmont Hospitality Group

Constellation Hotels

OCBC Bank

DBS Bank

Legal & General Investment Management

LaSalle Investment Management

National Bank of Kuwait plc

Pluto Finance

Stanhope

Nanyang Commercial Bank

Senior executives Tier 3

Elite City firm Macfarlanes LLP handles the full range of employment law work, with a particular strength in advising major institutions in the financial services sector. Work in this area includes advice on SMCR implementation, investigations and contentious senior executive exits. Employment Tribunal cases and employment law support to corporate transactions are other sources of work for the team. Hayley Robinson heads up the firm’s employment group. The veteran Seán Lavin is another key name in the team.

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Acquisition finance Tier 4

'Very commercial and able to aid quick decision-making on key issues', Macfarlanes LLP's 'strong and responsive' team has deep market knowledge across the spectrum of debt financing techniques for a loyal roster of private equity sponsors and a growing number of credit funds, in their role as lenders. Kirstie Hutchinson 'has a great commercial manner and excellent knowledge of the latest precedents to enable the best outcome for clients'. Andrew Perkins has cultivated a strong following among private credit funds and is overarching head of a banking and finance team that has been significantly bolstered by the arrival of finance stalwart Malcolm Hitching from Ropes & Gray LLP in August 2020.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

The team is experienced enough to achieve a very efficient balance of conservative assessment of their client’s interests and constructive progress in negotiations.

The team is very commercial and able to aid quick decision-making on key issues. It is also able to judge an audience impeccably and explain complex technical concepts with the right tone.

Andrew Perkins is a pleasure to deal with: he is pragmatic, reliable and is available to get involved into the details when needed.

Kirstie Hutchinson has a great commercial manner and excellent knowledge of the latest precedents to enable the best outcome for clients.

 

Key clients

Hyve Group Plc

Epiris Managers

Knight Square Holdings

Silverfleet Capital Partners

BBX Inc.

RSK Group

GHO Capital Management

Origin Equity

Searchlight Capital Partners

Exponent Private Equity

Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans Tier 4

Led by Andrew Perkins, the 'strong and responsive' banking and finance team at Macfarlanes LLP has 'in-depth knowledge' across the spectrum of debt finance products for a borrower-focused client roster, that in addition to its core private equity sponsor clientele, also includes numerous listed companies. 'A great lawyer to have on your side', Kirstie Hutchinson provides 'practical and pragmatic advice' and is a key member of the team that was recently bolstered by the arrival in August 2020 of Malcolm Hitching from Ropes & Gray LLP.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

‘Seamless service. The Macs team is always joined up and pulling in same direction.’

‘Kirstie Hutchison is our relationship partner. Kirstie takes the time to understand our businesses (not always easy, across a diverse portfolio of 20 companies) and also our operating style, in order to tailor engagements. Services have been delivered across bank lending, fund structuring, litigation, tax and compliance. Kirstie sources the right team and ensures a joined up delivery. In terms of professional approach, I find Kirstie easy going, pragmatic and very commercial.’

‘The team has remained consistent over the past two and a half years so they know our business very well. They are extremely well informed with current affairs which means they can pass on excellent advice and advise accordingly. The client facing team have an outstanding support team working in the background who are also very engaging and responsive when needed.’

‘Both the partner, Kirstie Hutchinson, and senior solicitor, George Silber, were faultless. They were always available and pro-active with their engagement, and delivered most if not all work in the time expected even under immense time pressure. In negotiations, they clearly have the best interest of the client in mind whilst trying to strike an amicable balance with the vendor.’

‘What makes them stand out is their personal approach to client management; at times it felt they were not a third-party law firm but rather our in-house lawyers. This makes engaging them second nature and all helps with achieving the common goal.’

‘Kirstie Hutchinson is a tour de force and her skill and expertise (both technical and general commercial) is unparalleled in her practice area. Her attention to detail is exemplary and her advice is at the forefront of legal practice. We feel incredibly lucky to have her as our advising counsel.’

‘George Silber is a senior solicitor at the top of his game and with huge potential. I expect to see him come to the fore in leading roles in the not-too-distant future.’

‘Andrew Perkins, Sarah Ward, Richard Fletcher and team have extensive coverage of the Funds market and are alive to the latest trends and developments in both borrower and lender side requirements. I think they are involved in a broad variety of transactions across the Funds finance space and have a deep bench of associates who can be relied upon.’

Key clients

Anglian Windows Limited (Anglian)

Alchemy Special Opportunities LLP (Alchemy)

Argus Media Limited

Cumberland Farms Inc

Hyve Group Plc

J D Wetherspoon Plc

Smith & Williamson Holdings Limited

Stonehage Fleming & Family Partners Limited

Debt capital markets Tier 4

The capital markets practice at Macfarlanes LLP, which has a focus on the more complex and high-end of the market, is 'always constructive in its approach and displays impressive patience'.  It has experience of assisting clients with the establishment of multibillion pound bond programmes and is also heavily involved in both domestic and cross-border infrastructure developments funded by project bonds. Practice head Richard Fletcher is 'very calm under pressure and an expert in his field'. He frequently acts for financial institutions, corporates, fund managers, investors, servicers and trustees. His work encompasses bonds, MTN programmes, high-yield issuances, restructurings, convertibles and exchangeables.

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Testimonials

Few new bond issues take place without encountering glitches or delays, especially where an issuer is new to the process. I worked with the Macfarlanes debt team on such a “first-timer” bond issue and was pleased to find that none of the many glitches or delays was attributable to the firm, which was always constructive in its approach to resolving them and displayed impressive patience.’

There were three individuals involved in the Macfarlanes team and all performed well without making any mistakes. Claire Golding’s initial suite of bond documents required remarkably little amendment and Richard Fletcher liaised well with the solicitor to the bond trustee.’

Richard Fletcher is very calm under pressure and an expert in his field.’

Key clients

Venn Partners LLP

Beechbrook Capital

Ben Oldman Partners

Derivatives and structured products Tier 4

Macfarlanes LLP has one of the market's most prominent buy-side practices, advising on prime brokerage, derivatives, repos, clearing and debt trading for large and sophisticated funds. It also handles highly structured transactions involving involving fund-based structures. The firm's client base includes US, UK, European and Hong Kong-based fund managers, providing a detailed knowledge of trading issues and local regulations in Europe, USA, China, India and other markets. Beyond its work for funds, the firm also assists financial institutions, corporates, servicers, fund managers, investors and trustees with structured finance transactions. William Sykes leads the derivatives and trading group and Richard Fletcher is head of finance. Christopher Acton is also recommended for buy-side work.

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Testimonials

‘I like working with Richard Fletcher. He is responsive, hardworking and gives sensible measured advice. He has a good team under him and I think he has built up a bank of loyal clients who go to him for “no nonsense” advice and just getting the deal done without much fuss.’

‘The team has a broad and deep experience in negotiating derivatives contracts with the majority of major banks, allowing it focus on the essential points and to provide clients with commercial as well as legal advice including what terms a particular counterparty is likely to accept. What is unique about the team is its knowledge of the fund industry and all the regulatory constraints specific to funds, such that it can autonomously negotiate contracts on behalf of fund clients without much recourse to a separate fund formation team.’

‘Christopher Acton has a remarkable ability to identify and focus on the issues most relevant for a particular client, to explain even complex issues to less experienced clients and to provide the clients with a big picture overview of the likely outcome of negotiations.’

‘The firm is experienced, responsive and professional. Chris Acton has a good depth of knowledge, is practical and responsive.’

‘It’s a fantastic team – smart and commercial, very responsive and consistently of high quality. They have great depth of expertise both sell-side and buy-side. They always respond promptly and their pricing is sensible.’

‘Will Sykes is excellent to deal with. Will is smart and analytical and also sensible and pragmatic. He brings a deep understanding of the market, both from the sell-side and the buy-side. He really know us and our counterparties and what is important to both sides. He helps us target our energies and progress negotiations quickly and efficiently.’

‘We wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them for their thorough work product. The team is very knowledgeable, client-focused and good value for money. They go above and beyond to deliver for their clients. They are trustworthy, approachable, commercial and pragmatic. It is important for an in-house legal team to be able to rely on external counsel, as their work product does reflect on in-house counsel – Macfarlanes have never let us down.’

Key clients

Marshall Wace

Cboe Worldwide Holdings Limited

Muzinich & Co

Employers Tier 4

Elite City firm Macfarlanes LLP handles the full range of employment law work, with a particular strength in advising major institutions in the financial services sector. Work in this area includes advice on SMCR implementation, investigations and contentious senior executive exits. Employment Tribunal cases and employment law support to corporate transactions are other sources of work for the team. Hayley Robinson heads up the firm’s employment group. The veteran Seán Lavin is another key name in the team.

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Testimonials

‘Macfarlanes is an excellent firm which has long experience of the private equity marketplace going back into the 1980s.

‘Hayley Robinson is just excellent. Thoughtful, precise and a good lawyer with a strong ability to deal with complex issues.’

 

Environment Tier 4

Led by 'safe pair of hands' Nigel Price, the team at Macfarlanes LLP provides advice on transactions, regulatory issues, and disputes to clients in the corporate, real estate, fund, financial services, private client and infrastructure sectors. The group's main areas of strength include M&A and real estate transactions, environmental insurance negotiations, commercial property development work, site contamination risks, environmental sustainability and company reporting issues, and ESG-related mandates.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

‘The team is lead by Nigel Price. He is a very solid individual with a good grasp of the law and a safe pair of hands.’

Key clients

GHO Capital

Stanhope

Legal & General

St William

Intu

Hovis

Parkdean Resorts

Greenergy

Brookfield Properties

XPO Logistics

Financial services: non-contentious/regulatory Tier 4

The full service regulatory team at Macfarlanes LLP has experience advising in relation to asset management, wealth management, corporate finance, Fintech and the mortgage sector. The firm is active on Brexit and SMCR work, as well as being on the FCA s166 skilled persons panel. Practice head Andrew Henderson joined the firm in 2020 from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP and brings expertise in advising financial institutions and financial technology firms on financial services regulation and risk management. Also notable is Paul Ellison, who focuses on issues relating to Brexit and the senior managers and certification regime. Michelle Kirschner left the firm for Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher in 2019.

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Testimonials

‘Personal service and specialist knowledge of the area’

‘Will Hedges is really knowledgeable and creative in getting contracts concluded to the maximum advantage of the client’

Key clients

Montagu Private Equity

Hg Capital

Scottish Equity Partners

Headway Capital

Smith & Williamson

Stonehage Fleming

Merian

Quilter

Troy Asset Management

Partnership Tier 4

At Macfarlanes LLP, the professional practices group predominantly advises on M&A and structuring work for LLPs, as well as providing employment, tax and regulatory services. Practice head John Dodsworth is a specialist in non-contentious partnership issues.

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Pensions (non-contentious) Tier 4

At Macfarlanes LLP, practice head Camilla Barry assists on the pensions aspects of M&A deals while Andrew Barton leads the firm's de-risking practice. More broadly, clients can source advice on the management of sector issues such as section 75 debts, clearance applications and a range of disputes.

Practice head(s):

Private equity: transactions – high-value deals (£250m+) Tier 4

Macfarlanes LLP advises private equity houses in the high-cap and mid-market transactional space, and has a growing focus on management advice, secondary transactions, and credit fund lending and financing. The team works on standard buyouts, portfolio company M&A, public-to-privates, investments, and carve-outs, collaborating with well-regarded international firms on cross-border deals. Alex Edmondson leads the team, and maintains a number of key client relationships, primarily advising on sponsor-led buyouts. Former PE head Stephen Drewitt works on a number of major transactions for sponsors and management teams. Ian Martin has retired.

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Key clients

Exponent Private Equity

Epiris

Glendower Capital

Caledonia

Hayfin

GHO

Charme Capital

Graphite Capital

August Equity

OpCapita

Securitisation Tier 4

Macfarlanes LLP 'provides dedicated partner-level support' and one client praises the securitisation group as 'good value for money, client-focused, trustworthy and pragmatic, going above and beyond to deliver for its clients'. The firm is most widely known for its work on complex transactions, frequently involving fund-based structures, and its securitisation transactions in the project and infrastructure sectors. It handles a broad range structured finance deals for financial institutions, corporates, servicers, fund managers, investors and trustees. Lead partner Richard Fletcher 'invests time and effort in understanding his client's concerns and working towards pragmatic solutions'.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

‘The firm provides dedicated partner-level support overseeing the process.’

‘Richard Fletcher is knowledgeable and proactive. He invests time and effort in understanding his client’s concerns and working towards pragmatic solutions.’

‘We appreciate their thorough work product. We wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them. They are very knowledgeable, good value for money, client-focused and go above and beyond to deliver for their clients. They are trustworthy, approachable, commercial and pragmatic. It is important for an in-house legal team to be able to rely on external counsel, as their work product does reflect on in-house counsel – Macfarlanes has never let us down.’

Key clients

Muzinich & Co

Charities and not-for-profit Tier 5

The key members of the team at Macfarlanes LLP are well-regarded private client practitioners Jonathan Conder and Nicholas Harries, who have a wealth of experience in advising philanthropic individuals, families and institutional clients, in addition to well-known operational charities. The team is particularly active in charitable sectors such as education, healthcare and sustainable development. The group is well placed to handle complex deals that require both charity law advice and expertise in other practice areas, including commercial and real estate law.

Corporate restructuring & insolvency Tier 5

Led by the 'highly impressiveJat Bains for restructuring and the 'technically very strongSimon Beale on the insolvency front, Macfarlanes LLP's 'smart and commercial' team is well hedged across the range of formal insolvency procedures, as well as distressed investment-related work. On the creditor front, the firm's growing presence at the front end of mid-market credit fund financings has led to a significant deal flow for the restructuring team and is an added source of work alongside the firm's steady stream of mandates for IPs and turnaround investors. Peter Baldwin's arrival in June 2019 from Ropes & Gray LLP has further enhanced the firm's distressed investment capability, given his expertise in the special situations field.    

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Testimonials

Commercial lawyers focused on achieving the best outcome for their clients.

The service and responsiveness of the whole team, as well as the quality of their advice, is exemplary. They have gone above and beyond to be there whenever we have needed them.

Jat Bains’ approach is refreshing, he takes a commercial and pragmatic stance and is always focused on the right outcome for his clients.

Jat Bains: user friendly, helpful, knowledgeable, always makes himself available.

Paul Keddie provides clear and well thought through advice with a real focus on commercial outcomes.

 

 

 

Key clients

Alchemy Special Opportunities LLP

Better Capital LLP

FRP Advisory LLP

Oak Hill Advisors

OpCapita

Property litigation Tier 5

Macfarlanes LLP acts for developers, housebuilders, investors and asset managers in various contentious real estate issues arising from commercial and residential property projects. Practice head Douglas Wass covers associated construction and engineering disputes, as well as related professional negligence claims.

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Immigration

Macfarlanes LLP advises an impressive roster of companies on employment of non-EEA nationals, corporate due diligence and immigration compliance, including sponsor licence duties and responsibilities. The team also supports senior executives and their families with both inbound and outbound immigration advice. Another key area of work is in complex issues involving previous immigration refusals, the prevention of illegal working and TUPE situations. Senior counsel James Perrott heads the team and has experience assisting in matters where there is evidence of immigration non-compliance and in liaising with the Home Office.

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Testimonials

‘I have always found Macfarlanes to be highly knowledgeable in their field and always professional.’

‘The partner and associate that we work with had excellent knowledge about the matter discussed and were able to provide us with good advice to have the issues resolved. They were also diligent in terms of timing to deliver the documents necessary to make the deal.’

We are a distinctive London-based law firm, focused on our clients and on delivering excellence in the international legal market.

We understand that because the world in which our clients operate is complicated, unpredictable and pressured, you need clear, concise advice that is attuned to your needs. That takes experience, so our partners get involved and stay involved. With the support of tight-knit teams, they advise on your most critical matters with clarity and confidence.

That leads to great ideas, stronger relationships and greater efficiency. It’s a quality of experience that distinguishes us from our larger competitors, but only enhances our reputation for solving our clients’ most complex legal issues.

We’ve made a deliberate choice to remain smaller than many of our peers. The tight-knit, cohesive nature of our firm means you benefit from our collective experience. We talk to one another.  We’ve kept things simple. We’ve decided against growth at the expense of quality, against size at the expense of efficiency and agility.

So whilst we’re large enough to advise on your most complex matters, we’re also small enough to ensure that our people and our work are exceptional, without fail.

You will have issues and needs that are unique. These differences, be they commercial imperatives or personal pressures, will always be high in our minds: we have a collective sense of responsibility towards the people, not just the institutions we serve.

Internationally you want the best advice from the best lawyer – irrespective of the jurisdiction they are working in, or where they are based.  You also want it integrated and interpreted for you. Our independent approach gives you just that, wherever you are.

Whether you need advice on corporate and commercial matters or on your private affairs either in the UK or overseas please contact us. We would be pleased to hear from you.

Department Name Email Telephone
Senior partner Sebastian Prichard Jones
Managing partner Julian Howard
Commercial, brands and IP Malcolm Walton
Competition Malcolm Walton
Construction & engineering Angus Dawson
Corporate and M&A Luke Powell
Corporate and M&A Howard Corney
Derivatives & trading Will Sykes
Employment Seán Lavin
Employment Hayley Robinson
Finance Christopher Lawrence
Financial services regulation Paul Ellison
Insurance Andrew Barton
Investment management Stephen Robinson
Litigation and dispute resolution Iain Mackie
Pensions Camilla Barry
Private client Piers Barclay
Private equity Stephen Drewitt
Real estate Anthony Burnett-Scott
Restructuring and insolvency Jat Bains
Tax and reward Damien Crossley
Photo Name Position Profile
 Peter Abbott  photo Peter Abbott Partner advising on a wide range of tax and structuring matters but…
 Christopher Acton  photo Christopher Acton Partner advising hedge funds, managed account platforms and proprietary trading houses, on…
 Jessica Adam  photo Jessica Adam Partner working for a range of clients from private equity houses and…
 Alexander Amos  photo Alexander Amos Partner advising a wide range of asset managers and investors on the…
 Jonathan Arr  photo Jonathan Arr Partner specialising in international contentious trust, probate and succession disputes, high-value family…
 Jatinder Bains  photo Jatinder Bains Partner specialising in a range of debt finance transactions, acting for credit…
 Peter Baldwin photo Peter Baldwin Partner specialising in advising clients on a broad range of innovative special…
 Mark Baldwin  photo Mark Baldwin Partner practicing on a broad spectrum of corporate tax work. His particular…
 Piers Barclay  photo Piers Barclay Partner specialising in succession, tax and estate planning advice for individuals and…
 Nick Barnes photo Nick Barnes Partner advising on commercial real estate work, including development and investment work,…
 Camilla Barry  photo Camilla Barry Partner advising corporate groups, trustees and insurers on all aspects of UK…
 Andrew Barton photo Andrew Barton Corporate insurance partner with expertise in a wide range of insurance transactional…
 Neill Blundell  photo Neill Blundell Partner and head of the firm’s corporate crime and investigations practice. He…
 Robert Boyle  photo Robert Boyle Partner active in all fields of corporate law, advising on a broad…
 Clare Breeze  photo Clare Breeze Partner regularly advising investors, developers and funders on a wide variety of…
 Sam Brooks photo Sam Brooks Partner primarily representing sponsors of both closed-ended and open-ended alternative investment funds,…
 Anthony Burnett-Scott  photo Anthony Burnett-Scott Partner and head of the commercial real estate practice. He has a…
 Richard Burrows  photo Richard Burrows Partner advising on all fields of company and corporate law, including private…
 Adam Campbell  photo Adam Campbell Partner advising on a broad range of domestic and cross-border M&A transactions.
 Harry Coghill  photo Harry Coghill Partner with broad transactional experience, including in the areas of public and…
 Robert Collard  photo Robert Collard Partner specialising in employee share schemes and incentives and head of the…
 Jonathan Conder  photo Jonathan Conder Partner advises UK and international private clients, trustees, foundations, family offices and…
 Howard Corney  photo Howard Corney Partner advising on a broad range of M&A work with a particular focus…
 Oliver Court  photo Oliver Court Partner advising individuals, families and trustees based in the UK and abroad…
 Damien Crossley  photo Damien Crossley Partner and head of the tax and reward group. He advises on…
 Dominic Cunliffe  photo Dominic Cunliffe Partner working exclusively on commercial real estate transactions and specialises in both…
 Angus Dawson  photo Angus Dawson Partner and head of the non-contentious side of the construction and engineering…
 Simon Day  photo Simon Day Partner specialising in competition litigation and other complex multiparty disputes, and has…
 John Dodsworth  photo John Dodsworth Partner with considerable deal experience over a 20 plus year period advising…
 Elizabeth Doherty photo Elizabeth Doherty Partner specialising in international contentious trust, probate and succession disputes, high-value family…
 Barry Donnelly  photo Barry Donnelly Partner with more than 30 years’ experience in international disputes and investigations,…
 Stephen Drewitt  photo Stephen Drewitt Partner specialising in private equity, acting predominantly for private equity sponsors and…
 Alexander Edmondson  photo Alexander Edmondson Partner advising on a broad range of M&A transactions and corporate advisory…
 Paul Ellison  photo Paul Ellison Partner specialising in advising on UK financial services regulatory matters. He advises…
 Cameron Firth photo Cameron Firth Partner with over 15 years’ experience practising all aspects of antitrust law…
 Richard Fletcher  photo Richard Fletcher Partner advising financial institutions and corporates on a range of financing matters,…
 Lora Froud  photo Lora Froud Partner advising clients on the structuring and operation of onshore and offshore…
 Richard Giangrande photo Richard Giangrande Partner advising on all aspects of estate planning and personal taxation and…
 Christopher Good  photo Christopher Good Partner advising on private fund formation, looking after fund sponsors who are…
 Charles Gothard  photo Charles Gothard Partner specialsing in advising international families and entrepreneurs as well as the…
 Alexandra Green  photo Alexandra Green Partner advising asset managers, wealth managers, banks, mortgage providers, insurers, corporate finance…
 Alex Green  photo Alex Green Partner working on a broad range of corporate matters, with a particular…
 Ashley Greenbank  photo Ashley Greenbank Partner advising on the full range of corporate tax issues, but particular…
 Nicholas Harries  photo Nicholas Harries Partner advising on the full range of tax, estate and succession planning…
 Will Hedges  photo Will Hedges Partner 2018
Mr Andrew Henderson photo Mr Andrew Henderson Partner advising financial institutions and financial technology firms on financial services regulation…
 Justin Hope  photo Justin Hope Partner advising on all aspects of domestic and cross-border M&A transactions, including…
 Lois Horne  photo Lois Horne Partner advising financial institutions, corporates and entrepreneurs on a broad range of…
 Julian Howard  photo Julian Howard Partner and firm’s managing partner principally involved in acquisition finance, international capital…
 Mark Hunter photo Mark Hunter Partner advising on a broad range of tax, trust and estate planning…
 Kirstie Hutchinson  photo Kirstie Hutchinson  Partner acting for private equity sponsors, corporate borrowers and issuers, credit fund…
 Gerald Kelly  photo Gerald Kelly Partner specialising in joint ventures and property development and advises developers, institutions…
 Dan Lavender  photo Dan Lavender Partner specialising in city and financial services litigation and investigations. He is…
 Sean Lavin photo Sean Lavin Partner advising corporate clients on TUPE, collective and union issues, the employment aspects…
 Mark Lawrence photo Mark Lawrence Partner
 Christopher Lawrence  photo Christopher Lawrence Partner and head of the finance group, with over 20 years’ experience…
 Charles Lloyd  photo Charles Lloyd Partner specialising in international commercial litigation including fraud and asset tracing, large scale…
 Iain Mackie  photo Iain Mackie Partner specialising in large-scale corporate and financial services litigation and arbitration for…
 Dan Marriot  photo Dan Marriot Partner working on property development, the negotiation of commercial leases for both…
 Charles Martin  photo Charles Martin Senior partner working principally in M&A and private equity, acting for sponsors…
 Andy Mather  photo Andy Mather Partner acting on a wide range of substantial international and domestic arbitration,…
 Matt McCahearty  photo Matt McCahearty Partner’s whose practice focuses on complex commercial litigation and arbitration, white collar…
 James McCredie  photo James McCredie Partner advising on a wide range of tax matters, including the establishment…
 Jeremy Moncrieff  photo Jeremy Moncrieff Partner advising on a broad range of tax and structuring matters with…
 Colin Morgan  photo Colin Morgan Partner and head of the firm’s real estate finance practice. He has…
 Guy Morpuss QC photo Guy Morpuss QC Barrister with a wide-ranging commercial practice, both in court and in arbitration.
 Isobel Morton photo Isobel Morton Partner advising ndividuals, family offices and trustees on tax, trust and succession…
 Simon Nurney  photo Simon Nurney Partner specialising in large scale corporate, commercial and construction disputes for a…
 Tom Pedder  photo Tom Pedder Partner whose practice encompasses a wide range of commercial real estate matters,…
 Andrew Perkins  photo Andrew Perkins Partner acting for alternative lenders, credit funds, banks and financial institutions on…
 Simon Perry  photo Simon Perry Partner undertaking a broad range of domestic and international M&A and private…
 Stephen Pike  photo Stephen Pike
 Steven Pitchford  photo Steven Pitchford Partner advising a diverse range of clients on domestic and international corporate…
 James Popperwell  photo James Popperwell Partner and head of the firm’s fraud practice. He specialises in asset…
 Luke Powell  photo Luke Powell Partner and co-head of the mergers and acquisitions group.
 Gregory Price  photo Gregory Price Partner focusing on ax consultancy, providing tax advice to UK and international…
 Sebastian Prichard Jones  photo Sebastian Prichard Jones Partner specialising in advising high-net-worth individuals and families on tax and succession…
 Edward Reed  photo Edward Reed Partner advising internationally mobile families on their asset structuring, personal tax and succession…
 Ceinwen Rees photo Ceinwen Rees Partner advising on a broad range of tax and structuring matters with…
 Hayley Robinson  photo Hayley Robinson Partner and head of the employment team, advising on the full range…
 Stephen Robinson  photo Stephen Robinson Partner advising a wide range of investment managers, fund sponsors and investors…
 Tom Rose  photo Tom Rose Partner advising on a wide range of corporate matters, including public and…
 Gideon Sanitt photo Gideon Sanitt Partner specialising in tax litigation but has a background in transactional tax…
 Mark Slade  photo Mark Slade Senior counsel working on a broad range of corporate matters but with…
 Jennifer Smithson  photo Jennifer Smithson Partner advising on all areas of personal tax and succession planning, with…
 William Sykes  photo William Sykes Partner and head of derivatives and trading practice, and advises investment and…
 Alicia Thomas  photo Alicia Thomas Partner advising on on a broad range of tax and structuring matters…
 Tom Usher  photo Tom Usher Partner advising on all aspects of EU and UK competition law including…
 Malcolm Walton  photo Malcolm Walton Partner and head of the firm’s competition group and his experience covers…
 Sarah Ward  photo Sarah Ward Partner advising banks, financial institutions, debt funds, investment funds, borrowers and sponsors…
 Douglas Wass  photo Douglas Wass Partner acting on a wide range of substantial international and domestic arbitration,…
 Robert Ogilvy Watson photo Robert Ogilvy Watson Partner specialising in corporate law, particularly mergers and acquisitions involving listed companies,…
Number of UK partners : 89
Number of other UK fee-earners : 439

We are committed to fostering an inclusive culture throughout the firm, from entry level to partnership. It is about recruiting, retaining and promoting all groups in the firm fairly, and we have invested in our processes to ensure that everyone has the same chance to develop and advance. 2020 has been a particularly unique year due to Covid-19. Although there are unprecedented challenges, it also demonstrates what can be achieved when businesses, charities and communities come together. Following on from key initiatives delivered in 2018 and 2019, during 2020 we have continued our work within D&I delivering our programmes virtually, with a focus on allyship, ethnicity and social mobility.

  • Inclusive leadership programme: delivered in 2018, this programme included consultation with all members of the firm and culminated in the launch of 25 People Commitments aligning to three main strands: Balance, Clarity and Development. Under the Balance strand, we reviewed our parental leave policies and in 2019, were ranked first place in the legal sector in the My Family Care Parental Leave Policy & Reward Benchmark.
  • The Female Lawyers Forum: this development programme consisted of five modules and was delivered over the course of 2019 with the support of the senior leadership team and clients.
  • The Male Lawyer Roundtables: delivered in 2019, this was a forum for our male lawyers to discuss the 25 People Commitments and to reflect on feedback from our female and BME lawyers.
  • BME fee earner initiative: a series of workshops with our BME lawyers provided a forum to discuss BME inclusion at the firm. We are now implementing the proposal including the launch of a BME reverse mentoring programme in February 2020, enabling our most senior partners to be mentored by BME solicitors and trainees.
  • A focus on allyship: in 2020, we have identified allyship as an area of focus. In February 2020, we celebrated LGBT+ history month by placing a spotlight on LGBT+ icons and hosted weekly stalls in the Kitchen area to allow people to physically sign up to be an ally. In early 2020, we also launched a toolkit on “how to be an effective ally” at a cross-sector event we hosted in conjunction with InterLaw.
  • Our response to the Black Lives Matter movement: building on our work around allyship, in support of the BLM movement, we consulted with our REACH network and developed a programme to support colleagues, encourage discussion and enable learning. This included: two reflection sessions during which colleagues spoke about personal experiences, a seminar looking at race relations in the UK and US delivered by Afua Hirsch (who is also facilitating our reverse mentoring programme), and the launch of a resource hub which provides employees with an extensive list of materials to educate themselves on race-related issues. In July 2020, we were one of the first firms to sign up to the Race Fairness Commitment and we are currently collating and analysing our ethnicity data as part of this commitment.
  • A focus on social mobility: in 2020, we have identified social mobility as a key focus area. We currently work with a number of organisations to recruit socially mobile candidates at a graduate level, including Rare Recruitment, Aspiring Solicitors, Bright Network and PRIME. The recruitment process includes CV blind interviews and the use of contextual recruitment which enables us to understand the context of a candidate’s experiences and qualifications. In order to further our work in this space, we are in the process of designing a bespoke school pipeline programme to support 40-60 candidates from socially disadvantaged backgrounds throughout sixth form and university each year.

All of these programmes have been supported by our four staff networks, which provide opportunities for peer support, networking and personal development: Balance (for everyone balancing home and work commitments), LGBT+ & friends, REACH (race, ethnicity and cultural heritage) and EnABLE (for disability, neurodiversity and mental health). The networks are consulted on particular issues and help to inform key decisions around the firm’s strategy.

The Lex 100 Verdict

'Fantastic training, excellent quality of work and lovely people' seems to sum up London's Macfarlanes. Indeed, the 'strong emphasis on trainee development' is manifested in training which is 'consistent, structured and delivered by specialists'. What's more, the 'small-ish intake and size of the firm provide trainees with the opportunity to get real responsibility from day one'. This high level of responsibility translates into best moments such as 'arranging a major fund closing as a first seat trainee', 'leading a conference call' and 'attending court as the sole representative solicitor'. This certainly makes recruits feel like 'valued members of the team'. Macfarlanes is a deserved winner of Lex 100 Winner awards for quality of work and confidence of being kept on post qualification. A few trainees raised concerns about the lack of diversity, something which they feel Macfarlanes 'has taken a long time to engage with', although it was acknowledged that the firm is 'working hard to deal with this'. The 'quality of dinner in the canteen' and the work/life balance in certain departments were also criticised. Encouragingly, though, 'most people tend not to take themselves too seriously, but at the same time take pride in their work'. Moreover, 'working alongside such nice and bright people makes being at work much more enjoyable', an example of which is when 'a partner emailed me to say thank you for sending out some emails while on annual leave'. Late nights were of course lamented, with recruits definitely not enjoying 'long hours and pressure', the odd 'all-nighter' and stressful days leading up to deal completion'. But for thorough training, a friendly and open culture and a 'great breadth of work', consider Macfarlanes.