John Melville-Smith > Seddons > London, England > Lawyer Profile
120 New Cavendish Street
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John is a Partner in our Dispute Resolution team, with over 20 years’ experience, particularly in challenges to wills, contested probate and inheritance disputes, commercial partnership and contract disputes, professional negligence, insolvency and debt recovery.
John has a reputation for giving his clients candid and clear advice both on the prospects of success in law and on the commercial realities of the situation. He is experienced in negotiating settlements from positions of both strength and weakness and always advises his clients to seek a negotiated or mediated settlement in preference to incurring the costs and uncertainties of trial.
Wherever possible, he conducts his own advocacy, in both the County and High Courts, and has conducted many trials himself, mainly of fast track contract disputes in the County Court.
John is a member of the Association of Contentious Trusts and Probate Specialists (‘ACTAPS’).
- 2006 – Present | Seddons, Partner
- 1999 – 2005 | Gillanders, Partner and Head of Litigation
- 1996 – 1999 | John Martlew & Co, Assistant Solicitor
- 1994 – 1996 | John Martlew & Co, Trainee
John is a full member of the Association of Contentious Trusts and Probate Specialists (‘ACTAPS’)
St Edwards’s, Cheltenham; University of Birmingham (1991 LL.B); College of Law, Guildford (1993 Solicitors’ Finals); De Montfort University (2011 LL.M); College of Law, Guildford (2013 ACTAPS ‘diploma’); Open University (ongoing, French and Spanish)
Seddons has a strong track record in representing both claimants and defendants in litigation involving foreign governments, steel production, mining, fashion, and real estate. Dispute resolution head Christian Smith has particular expertise in corporate disputes, shareholder conflicts, and commercial agency matters; John Melville-Smith is an expert in challenges to wills, contested probate and inheritance disputes, and contractual and professional negligence claims; and David Wheeler is ‘highly experienced‘. Marvin Simons recently stepped down as department co-head, but stays on as consultant.