Tees Law > Cambridge, England > Firm Profile
Tees Law Offices
Tees Law > The Legal 500 Rankings
Tees Law in Cambridge has one of the most well-established, experienced and well-respected claimant clinical negligence practices in East Anglia. Janine Collier leads the personal injury and clinical negligence practice, in which the vastly experienced Vicki Seabrook brings to bear more than 30 years' experience. Collier recently secured more than £2m for a young child injured due to delayed diagnosis of a Group A Streptococcal infection. The 'quite exceptional' Tim Deeming 'manages cases with a light touch and with the client's best interests at heart'; he recently secured a large settlement for the family of a man whose death was due to the delay in diagnosis of a colonic tumour.
‘Tees has been clear and consistent over a number of years to me in cases of personal injury and negligence. Inevitably this involves sensitive material and the need to dissect complex causal relations whilst maintaining empathy and sensitivity to clients.’
‘Tim Deeming has been quite exceptional in the quality of his legal instructions, respect for the independence of an expert and empathy towards clients. He has had to construct coherent analyses of causal relations thereby piecing together multiple different medical specialties, but has managed this with a light touch and with a client’s best interests at heart.’
‘Janine Collier was the first contact with Tees, this was still at a very distressing time for me, she patiently listened as to why we considered the care my wife received was not fit for purpose, and was quite reassuring and understood with empathy why we were so distressed. Tim Deeming also had the same qualities as Janine Collier, before Covid he made a home visit were the case could be discussed within a relaxed environment, and his manner inspired confidence. When we presented Tim with any small detail his telephone or email response would be almost immediate or at least within the day.’
‘The Tees law team has always been supportive and quick in any answer or request, they followed my case in the last two and half years, we always had good communication.’
‘Helpful and through. Excellent knowledge and understanding. Great customer service. Service through pandemic was excellent lots of contact via video call and resolved my whole case virtually.’
‘Very efficient when dealing with medical negligence claims, deep understanding of relevant issues and sensitivity when dealing with claimants.’
‘Great teamwork. Every team member I was in touch with was very sufficient and professional. I was able to trust them all as we were working alongside of my case.’
- Secured an admission of liability and compensation of £3.125m for a negligently performed smear test in a pregnant patient causing their waters to break and the premature birth of her son at 24+6 weeks resulting in severe physical, behavioural and cognitive problems.
- Secured £1.85m for the delay in diagnosis and treatment of Cauda Equina resulting in avoidable permanent bowel and bladder dysfunction.
- Represented a family at a three-day inquest into the suicide of a patient following an inadequate assessment at hospital and the failure to take proper precautions to prevent suicide. The patient was negligently discharged from hospital and died within 1 hour. Compensation was secured for the patient’s family following the inquest conclusion.
Tees Law has a contentious trusts and probate team in Cambridge, and senior associate and ACTAPS member Sara Stabler, who leads the practice and is a Higher Court Advocate, calls upon resources from the firm's other offices to handle a growing volume of high-value disputes. Clients are 'impressed by her knowledge' and note that she is 'approachable, sensible and very client-friendly'. She recently advised on a complex £1.8m property trust dispute involving assets that were held as tenants in common and a main property that was subject to a deed of trust.
‘Sara Stabler – I was impressed by her approach and knowledge. Clearly someone who knows what they are doing in this area. Approachable, sensible and very client-friendly. I would be happy to recommend clients to her and know they were in good hands.’
- Advising on a contested probate matter dealing with complex issues regarding proprietary estoppel, trust law, inheritance tax and capital gains tax.
- Advising on a contested probate dispute acting for the executor and sole beneficiary of the estate who was facing a claim by one of the deceased’s adult children from a previous marriage.
- Advising on a property trust dispute in respect of a beneficial interest in a property.
The 'extremely knowledgeable' team at Tees Law continues to support clients across the South East on all relevant agriculture and estates matters, working with farming families, high-net-worth estate owners, and major corporate landowners on complicated energy projects, strategic land transactions and major commercial and agricultural litigation. Commercial practice leader David Miller splits his time between the firm's six regional offices, working primarily on complicated energy projects, development land sales, and strategic land transactions. Letty Glaister is a 'superb' head of the private client side of the practice and advises on matters such as succession planing, while Caroline Metcalf is an 'excellent' resource for clients.
David Miller; Letty Glaister
Other key lawyers:
James Daynes; Caroline Metcalf
‘Tees Law have been approachable at all times – they are prompt and efficient with quick responses when required. Nothing has been too much trouble and attention to detail is excellent.’
‘Caroline Metcalf – is exceptionally professional, client friendly and approachable, always giving calm and measured advice, and understandable explanations of legal terminology. Caroline is totally dedicated to her work and her clients, her attention to detail is exacting, and her skillful strategy places her at the forefront of her field.’
‘The agricultural team at Tees Law are extremely knowledgeable and are my go-to firm for legal issues within the farming industry. My experience of working with Tees Law puts them head and shoulders above their peers. They consistently deliver work of the highest standard and without unnecessary delay.’
‘Letty Glaister is superb and can immediately relate to client’s issues and address their concerns in the most reassuring way. This allows Letty to build good relationships with her clients and it a pleasure to work alongside her on various projects.’
‘I have used this practice twice, both times with a successful result. They are very friendly and keep you informed of the progress of your case.’
‘Caroline Metcalf was the partner dealing with my cases. She was excellent in steering me in the right direction when I was unsure. I found her to be very friendly with a sense of humour that I found relaxing, taking the stress out of the situation for me.’
- Advised Lightsource BP on the completion of a £35m cap ex 50MW solar site in the Nottinghamshire.
- Advised clients on new wills for their £45m estate comprising farming partnerships and a family company, as well as various assets held in their sole/joint names.
- Advised on the grant of a new 20 year-sublease of a newly constructed 12-hectare glasshouse for the purposes of growing fruit and vegetables to be sold to national supermarkets.
Tees Law's family law offering has a wide reach across Essex, with practitioners in Brentwood, Chelmsford and Bishop's Stortford. Its team is well-known for advising on all types of pre and post-nuptial financial issues, including those involving tax planning, overseas trusts and company structures. Joshua Coombe in Chelmsford and Brentwood-based partner Louise Margiotta collectively have almost 50 years of family law experience. Also located in Brentwood is senior associate Caroline Andrews, who is knowledgeable about fertility law, surrogacy law and preconception agreements. Sally Powell is the main contact in Bishop's Stortford. Louise Buttery moved to Family Law Partners in 2020.
Joshua Coombe; Louise Margiotta; Sally Powell
Other key lawyers:
‘Joshua Coombe is a great leader with good knowledge.’
‘Louise Margiotta is dedicated to her clients and ensures the very best outcome for them. She is pragmatic and offers sensible clear advice whilst protecting their position. She is a highly respected member of the legal community.’
‘Attention to detail and efficiency of service.’
- Advised husband on complex financial order proceedings involving experts to report on pension and corporate issues. Final order implementation necessitated share transfer, property transfer and pension share.
- Advised a father on an intended move by his former partner with their six year old child. A child centred and collaborative approach allowed the parties to agree terms, including the move, for the benefit of the child.
Tees Law's real estate practice, which is led by Aaron Cane, is spread between the Brentwood, Chelmsford and Saffron Walden offices. In addition to Cane, other experienced practitioners to note are Jane Winfield (Brentwood), consultant Graeme Atkinson (Chelmsford) and consultant Mark Carter (Saffron Walden). The team handles a diverse workload for clients, including commercial leasing, property finance, commercial property acquisitions and disposals, portfolio management and development matters. The practice is highlighted for its increased activity in sectors such as solar energy, infrastructure and agriculture. Cane is particularly experienced in regeneration and development projects in the south east.
Other key lawyers:
‘Jane Winfield – very commercial minded and practical in her advice. She puts service before fees.’
‘Jane Winfield has always provided us with excellent support – diligent, thorough, responsive and efficient. All other associates from Tees have been equally professional and efficient.’
‘Jane particularly is friendly, realistic and approachable yet single minded and focussed to get the best outcome for the client; very rare these days.’
‘Aaron Cane heads up the commercial property Team at Tees Law and provides pragmatic and accessible advice with a focus on a positive outcome.’
‘We find the commercial property team to be friendly and approachable while maintaining the highest levels of professionalism and thoroughness. They communicate effectively between themselves which enables an accessible service even when individual members are not immediately available. Through the disruption of the last year, they have adapted to working from home and have continued to provide us with a seamless service.’
‘Aaron Cane’s level of knowledge and experience are exceptional and he maintains complete professionalism and upholds the highest standards in the quality of service he provides. He is also fast to respond while being friendly, approachable and a pleasure to deal with. He provides us with an exemplary service. We also deal with Shaun Moody who inspires confidence with his knowledge and professionalism. He demonstrates an ability to focus on detail and has the ability to identify on the important issues.‘
‘A very hands on practice with attention to detail working in an timely efficient manner.‘
‘The key strength of this team is the personal knowledge that the partner has of our situation and of the town in which it works. They are approachable and keen to solve problems, whether a formal lease agreement, or a small question regarding procedure. They have managed remote working well.’
Northumbrian Water Limited
Great Baddow Parish Council
- Acted for an individual on the sale of the golfing and events businesses operated at Warley Park Golf Club worth £5m.
- Advising a local property investment company on the acquisition of various multimillion pound development sites (circa £50m total) across the home counties and dealing with the forward sale of the affordable housing units on various sites golden brick and development agreements.
- Advising a property investor on the sale of a multi-let industrial estate in Essex for £12m.
Tees Law 'always provides a very well balanced and professional service, with very sound advice - they treat their clients like people rather than numbers'. The firm is well-versed in complex contract disputes and 'extremely business-minded and responsive' senior associate Sara Stabler, who leads the practice, is 'always actively involved and brings a pragmatic and hands on approach'. Stabler is a Higher Courts Advocate with more than 25 years' litigation experience.
‘Tees have always been innovative and as a consequence of the early adoption of remote working technology adapted seamlessly to the working practices required by COVID. Their use of video conferencing, telephone conferencing and electronic bundles common to all allowed them to continue to provide advice and representation to their clients.’
‘Sara Stabler is always actively involved and brings a pragmatic and hands on approach. She is extremely business minded and responsive.’
‘Tees have always provided a very well balanced and professional service. They use very sound advice and treat their clients like people rather than numbers. ’
‘I have worked with Sara Stabler on several matters and have found her to be not only very knowledgeable but also extremely approachable.’
Tees Law provides agricultural legal services to clients in East Anglia and across the Eastern region, drawing together a multi-disciplinary team. Catherine Mowat is head of the Cambridge rural team and assists private landowners and farming families with the administration of complex rural estates and succession planning issues, as well as wills and powers of attorney. James Dowson and associate Alex Waples lend the practice considerable expertise in commercial and rural property transactions.
‘I cannot praise Catherine Mowat enough for her knowledgeable advice , patience and professionalism in this matter.’
‘James Dowson is reliable and also ensures the commercial aspects of the deal are not lost in detail.’
‘Good knowledge of client base and provision of good pragmatic advice.’
‘James Dowson has depth of knowledge of the relevant issues for our mutual clients and ability to provide sound guidance through challenging issues.’
‘Alex Waples provided an excellent level of client care and had a full understanding of the property being sold.’
‘Our transaction with Tees was quite protracted and complex. At all stages we were kept well informed and updated regularly. The information we were given was well explained and relevant. We were well taken care of and treated respectfully and courteously. I would recommend Tees Law.’
‘Alex Waples was the person who handled our transaction. Everything was explained carefully and any questions answered knowledgeably and accurately. We were regularly contacted to be updated on progress. Meetings were conducted in a professional but comfortable and relaxed manner.’
‘Catherine Mowat is technically very good and is good at solving client problems by taking a holistic view of their affairs. She has great empathy when dealing with clients. She is also very easy to work with.’
- Handled the sale of a large farming business as a going concern with multiple lots, to a consortium purchasers with clawback overage arrangements and elements of deferred consideration.
- Acting for a family landowning trust in connection with the sale of 34 acres of land in Suffolk by way of option agreement to a major regional developer, Hopkins Homes.
- Strategic estate planning advice for a farming family, including consideration of trusts, partnership and company interests, and the following sale of commercial site with a view to benefitting the next generation in a controlled and tax efficient way.
'The service was excellent, very professional and polite', remarks a client of Tees Law. The firm acts for numerous high-net-worth individuals, academics, business owners, farmer and landowners in the Cambridge area. 'Efficient and helpful' lead partner Catherine Mowat has more than 20 years’ experience in complex estate administration and succession planning. Associates Heather Fuff, who moved to Cambridge from the firm's Saffron Walden office, and Chris Claxton-Shirley (who is 'cheerful, kind and caring'), along with senior associate James Marsh, play pivotal roles in the practice.
‘The service was excellent, very professional and polite.’
‘Chris Claxton-Shirley helped me navigate my way through all the various tasks I had to carry out to administer my wife’s estate. He was flexible in his approach, and always kept me informed of his progress and likely costs. The billing for the work was always clear and never a surprise. I trust Chris professionally and I like him personally. When the need arises I will happily work with him again.’
‘Absolute professionals and experts in their field.’
‘Chris Claxton-Shirley of Tees Solicitors is professional, cheerful, kind and caring.’
‘The team led by James Marsh worked well together. There was good communication between team members, who were always polite and helpful.’
‘I worked with James Marsh for nearly a year on winding up my late father’s estate. At all times he was professional, dealt with matters in a timely manner and happy to take the time to explain complex legal and tax issues in a clear and concise fashion.’
‘I have used Tees Law to administer a eill of a recent relative who died last year. They were very efficient and thorough. I have been given help and advice with all the aspects that have needed attention. The work has been done as promptly as is possible in these cases.’
‘Catherine Mowat has been most efficient and helpful. I was not knowledgeable at all in these matters and have been guided most diligently through all the necessary aspects by Catherine.’
- Advice on lifetime gifts of £6.8m, creation of trusts and subsequent administration of estate.
- Advised on international estate, with assets based in the UK and Croatia and considering EU succession implications.
- Advice on Court of Protection application to appoint trustee, to enable clients’ property sale to proceed where husband lacked mental capacity, and subsequent Deputyship application, together with associated protection and inheritance tax planning advice for the wife, including lifetime gifts and powers of attorney.
At Tees Law, the team in Brentwood is led by Lucy Folley, and is sought after to advise on M&A, internal reorganisations, joint ventures (and other strategic collaborations), outsourcing projects and governance-related issues. Folley, has over 20 years of experience in this space, and was formerly managing partner of Wortley Byers, which Tees merged with in 2019. She works with senior associate Baljeet Kaur, as well as associates Charles Kirk and Elizabeth de Cruz. Former practice head Sue Dowman left for Aston Park Law Limited in 2020.
‘Lucy Folley has extensive experience in company sales and acquisitions, and her knowledge on the legal and financial process involved and her judgement in handling the personalities involved proved invaluable.’
‘The personal approach and genuine interest in clients’ needs is always apparent. All staff are swift to respond. The collaboration between differing teams and the ability to use other teams to support where required gives me comfort. ’
‘The individuals we work with show professionalism at all times and are genuinely committed to my needs.’
‘The team were always there for us throughout the whole process of the sale of our business, their commitment to what they do was more than we ever expected. Their knowledge and professionalism was second to none.’
‘Baljeet Kaur was very efficient and effective in the work she completed for me.’
‘In our opinion, the corporate and commercial team at Tees Law have always provided a knowledgeable and responsive service. ’
‘The difference I find when dealing with team at Tees is that they offer clear and helpful advice without ‘sitting on the fence’. I am always left feeling both assured and confident after consulting with them and I never feel lost in legal jargon.’
‘Lucy Folley worked with me on my first company acquisition. This was a daunting undertaking but Lucy made the task both simple and understandable as she took me through the process in manageable steps. I was never overloaded with information but Lucy always advised me of the key issues and concerns and advised me where to focus on large documents. The ultimate accolade was the fact the acquisition was very successful.’
Stort Chemicals Limited
The Sellers of Rebura Limited
Brett Essex Golf Club Limited
Ashberry Holdings Ltd/Ashberry Healthcare Ltd
Dunmow Skips Ltd
Grove & Dean Ltd
- Advising Stort Chemicals Limited on an international transaction involving the purchase of shares of three companies Zanos Ltd, Agnichem Limited (both UK entities) and Zanos Europe B.V. (a company registered in the Netherlands).
- Advising the sellers on a complex international transaction involving the sale of the entire issued share capital of Rebura Ltd to Frank Recruitment Group Limited, a US private equity backed company.
- Advising Ashberry Holdings Limited on the acquisition of the entire issued share capital of Ashberry Healthcare Limited from a company incorporated in the British Virgin Islands; including a pre-acquisition reconstruction and post-acquisition refinancing of all operations.
Tees Law provides commercial litigation advice to a range of clients, from PLCs to local businesses and substantial farming clients, on matters including property, defamation, construction and agricultural matters. Located in Bishop’s Stortford, the practice frequently collaborates with other teams across the firm in disputes relating to takeovers and acquisitions, as well as partnership and company disputes. Practice leader Darren Perks has particular expertise in property disputes, such as construction and professional negligence claims. Caroline Metcalf specialises in agricultural disputes, while Polly Kerr advises clients in defamation cases.
‘Tees’ key strength is its undoubted commitment to fight its client’s corner. It has a huge breadth of experience in all aspects of litigation and is as at home in the High Court as in its local courts.’
‘Darren Perks is extremely competent, business-minded and responsive. He brings a pragmatic approach and is always a master of the detail. Always thinks through the issues and is clear in his approach.’
‘Caroline Metcalf is always actively involved in any case and goes the extra mile to achieve the best outcomes for her clients. Has sound judgement, and is responsive and thoughtful.’
‘Polly Kerr is extremely responsive and clear in her approach.’
Fuller Smith & Turner
Turners of Soham
Bishop’s Stortford College
Strutt and Parker Farms
Stansted Airport Limited
Newhall Projects Limited
- Advised on a group action worth £5m, involving the owners of over 100 units in the North of England.
- Advised a local restaurant on resisting their landlord’s attempts to terminate their business tenancy, relying on the intention to redevelop.
- Advised land owning clients in respect of attempts by telecommunication operators to secure rights to install masts on their land.
David Perry leads Tees Law's dispute resolution department, which is spread between the Chelmsford and Brentwood offices, and also counts on the support of practitioners in Bishop's Stortford, Cambridge and Royston. Perry, who has over 25 years of commercial litigation experience, is sought-after for advice on insolvency, company and partnership disputes. In addition to handling general commercial litigation, associate John Fawcett undertakes a mix of contentious property, construction and agriculture cases. Associates Katie Latham and Sarah Stanyer are also highly regarded.
‘We always get a good resolution to any cases we send to Sarah Stanyer and very happy with the communication and costs associated with each case. Sarah has always gone out of her way to help us as a company and we have built a good relationship up with her. Very happy as a company to always use the services provided.’
‘The team has a hard earned reputation for being very thorough and providing a comprehensive service in all aspects of litigation. They have a good depth of adept senior and junior grade solicitors who able to provide a seamless service.’
‘David Perry is very experience and is able to reduce complex litigation to basic identifiable issues for clients.’
‘Katie Latham – very dedicated and fights her clients corner to the last.’
‘Tees are good at recognising great service and recommending it. I have found all staff to be friendly and responsive. I have been instructed as counsel by Tees.’
National Business Crime Solutions Limited
- Advising a large, well known supermarket on the enforcement of an injunction that was breached by a homeless man, who was frequenting the client’s car park, causing a nuisance to and intimidating customers.
- Advising a company director on insolvency proceedings brought against him by HMRC and the subsequent satellite litigation worth in excess of £110m.
- Advising the respondents on proceedings brought by the liquidators of a holiday business against its former directors and company secretary for breach of fiduciary duty and wrongful trading.
Tees Law advises owner investors, business leaders and senior executives across the agriculture, education, transport and logistics sectors on a range of employment matters. The team handles reorganisations, redundancies and restructures, TUPE transactions, disciplinary procedures, settlement agreements and discrimination cases. Splitting his time between the Bishop’s Stortford and Chelmsford office, practice leader Robert Whitaker has expertise in data protection, restructuring and TUPE matters. Based in Bishop’s Stortford, Katherine Jameson deals with disciplinary and grievance investigations, exit strategies and contract reviews.
Other key lawyers:
‘Rob Whitaker is an expert in his field and was consistently excellent in his advice and support. Professional, approachable, calm and reassuring in every call, he effectively guided me through a challenging process providing clear and pragmatic advice, and was always prompt in getting back to me about queries.’
‘The team are personable and hugely knowledgeable. They build relationships with their clients and give a second to none service.’
‘Robert Whitaker is a superb head for the employment law department. His team are reliable and approachable.’
‘Robert Whitaker is exceptional and gives first-class advice, as do his team.’
- Advised a transport and logistics company on a disciplinary procedure and associated matters originally valued at £1m, involving a director and allegations of breach of fiduciary duty.
- Advised a multi-national accountancy firm on various employment matters requiring a holistic approach.
- Advised a construction business with reorganisation, managing sickness absence and furlough related advice.
Tees Law's practice is led by Robert Whitaker, who attracts mandates from national and international clients, and is particularly noted for his expertise in agricultural worker issues. In addition, employment matters connected with the banking, finance and telecoms industries are other areas of strength for Whitaker and his team. Associate Katherine Jameson and Sarah Stanyer are among other names to note in the group, whose experience includes matters concerning restrictive covenants, disciplinary/grievance investigations, contract reviews and exit strategies. Jonathan Insley joined Birketts LLP.
‘The true core strength of Tees’ work is their ability to combine the breadth of expertise and legal knowledge that you would expect from a City firm with the type of close client relationship that you would ordinarily associate with a boutique firm.’
‘Robert Whitaker is the principal individual that I work with. He has dazzling forensic judgement. His great talent is ability to identify quickly the legal nuances on which a case may turn.’
‘Robert Whitaker leads the Employment Team at Tees Law and he is exceptional at what he does. He is all about building strong relationships which mirrors how we run our business. His team is also excellent and I have no hesitation referring them to our clients as we do fairly regularly.’
‘The individuals I have worked with have always been very accommodating in making sure that we understand the legal implications of our situation. They will go out their way to explain to us all aspects of the case that we have asked them to looked into. They are always ready to accommodate request of meeting with the head of our company to present and make our legal positions clear. There were never any instances when we felt we have not been supported all throughout the process.’
‘Strangely we feel part of the company and we buy into their ethos. They are part of the local community supporting such things as health in the community and sports and diversity. Business-wise, one can be absolutely confident in that Tees advice is well thought out and takes into account the bigger picture. The emphasis is on the client not the company. I have used other companies but not for around ten years since we found Tees. They are experts and totally trustworthy in their billing and fees.’
‘We work mainly with the senior partner Robert Whitaker. He is extremely approachable and contactable. His interpersonal skills and his expert knowledge of employment law are outstanding. Robert and his team are a credit to the legal profession.’
‘Sarah Stanyer has really helped me over the year as I had to make four people redundant. She was helpful, professional and very efficient.’
‘Robert Whitaker and Katherine Jameson have very good attention to detail and remember the small points in the case whilst also focusing on the bigger picture. Papers are in excellent order and you feel like you have a safe pair of hands to work with. Very responsive and reliable.’
- Advising a transport and logistics company on a disciplinary procedure and associated matters originally valued in the region of £1 million involving a director and allegations of breach of fiduciary duty by the director, among other things.
- Advising a leading multinational accountancy firm on various factually and legally complex issues arising and requiring an holistic practical approach to resolve the matter.
- Advising a leading construction business with re-organisation, managing sickness absence and Coronavirus and furlough related advice.
At Tees Law, David Jacobs in Bishop's Stortford and Chelmsford-based senior associate Gwyneth Munjoma lead the personal injury and clinical negligence teams respectively. The firm attracts a strong flow of work from clients across a wide range of areas, including employers' liability claims, road traffic accidents, orthopaedic cases, obstetrics, sub-standard surgery and delayed diagnosis cases. In 2020, associate Craig Knightley and senior associate Natalie Pibworth joined from Attwaters Jameson Hill Solicitors and Powell & Co Solicitors respectively. Associate James Sherwin was hired from Hudgell Solicitors.
David Jacobs; Gwyneth Munjoma
- Represented client in respect of a Personal Injury claim for multiple injuries arising from a road traffic accident, including a right below knee amputation, achieving a seven-figure settlement.
- Representing the mother of a missing airman into the upcoming inquest into their death.
- Obtained a six-figure settlement for a client who sustained nerve damage, with a significant impact on her ability to work and quality of life, as a result of the negligent management of the delivery of her baby.
Tees Law acts for high-net-worth individuals and farming families on a range of family law matters including inherited assets, complex financial remedies involving overseas trusts and private law children cases. The family team regularly uses alternative dispute resolution methods such as mediation and arbitration. Executive partner Sally Powell leads the team in Bishop's Stortford, handling complex farming cases involving significant assets and trusts, as well as children matters such as cross-border relocations. David Redfern advises on complex financial issues, while Elizabeth Gale has experience in contentious trusts and nuptial agreements, often with an international element.
‘The team at Tees puts its clients needs first and foremost. Its approach is collaborative, flexible and agile.’
‘Sally Powell is bright, tactical, has brilliant client care and is a superb all-rounder. A leader in her field and a go-to for difficult private law or financial family disputes.’
‘Elizabeth Gale is a standout member of the team. She is a firm but fair negotiator, and not afraid of picking up the phone.’
‘The team work from the heart when dealing with clients, they put themselves in the clients shoes ensuring they fully understand the issues.’
‘David Redfern remains one of the top senior family lawyers in his area. He understands the needs both of high-net-worth individuals who wish to retain their family and business assets and their spouses who are trying to unlock the wealth to secure a fair award. His clients love his calm and reassuring manner. He is excellent at explaining possible options and outcomes.’
‘Helen Midgley is excellent; she offers very sound advice and manages client expectations brilliantly. Her preparation is always top notch. She knows the details of her cases and goes the extra mile.’
- Advised a wife on a complex farming matter involving significant assets.
- Settled a £9.5m claim for a client.
- Settled a £2.4m case involving foreign property.
The personal tax, trusts and probate team at Tees Law handles a spectrum of matters including lifetime tax planning issues and wills for high-net-worth individuals, high-value trusts and the administration of complex estates with an international element or agricultural dimension. Practice co-head and executive senior associate Nicola Havers specialises in complex trusts and property work, while fellow co-head and executive senior associate Sarah Walker advises on Anglo-French private client matters. Cathy Izzard has experience in wills and probates with an international element.
Nicola Havers; Sarah Walker
Other key lawyers:
‘The main feature that makes Tees Law stand out is that they are a very cohesive team, who are prompt and responsive.’
‘I have found Nicola Havers to have a broad depth of knowledge in trusts, and is able to deliver sound practical advice. She is also very approachable, and understanding of wider family issues. This enables her to deliver advice after considering the needs of the whole family. Nicola is an outstanding lawyer, who’s opinions and integrity I value greatly.’
‘The team’s strength is continuity of lawyer and client relationship, which is important in private client work. Their ability to work along with my own business accountants and investment advisors is key to a successful working relationship.’
‘They have helped me in a number of ways over the past few years and I have found them to be very professional and helpful.’
- Advised a retired client, with assets located in multiple jurisdictions with an approximate value of £5m, on protecting inheritance and assets for future generations, as well as making charitable gifts and tax planning.
- Advised a client on succession planning including wills and powers of attorney totalling £17m, where assets are held by way of a combination of partnerships, family trusts and personally.
- Advised on the administration of the estate of a client, held in a discretionary will trust, with assets valued at approximately £4m.
Tees Law's private client practice has wide reach in Essex, with it being spread between the firm's offices in Chelmsford, Brentwood, Bishop's Stortford and Saffron Walden. The team's experience spans a full spectrum of matters, including wills, estate administration, Lasting Powers of Attorney, trusts and tax-related issues. The firm is seen as a key player in the agriculture sector, with it undertaking a significant amount of work for landowners, notably on succession planning and estate administration matters. Elsewhere, the practice has had a marked uptick in mandates from high-net-worth individuals, and it also has a strong profile among owner-managed businesses. Ian Johnston (Chelmsford), Nicola Healy (Brentwood), Nicola Havers and Sarah Walker (both in Bishop's Stortford) are all recommended.
Ian Johnston; Nicola Healy; Nicola Havers; Sarah Walker
Other key lawyers:
Lorna Boorman; John Southan
‘Nicola Healy and her team were most informative and helpful on a personal level.’
‘Nicola Healy was very personable and helped to make the whole process run smoothly. She was always willing to help out and we never felt we couldn’t contact her, even when it felt like a silly question. Nicola was always happy to guide us through paperwork we didn’t understand and was quick to get back to us with any issues raised.’
‘Efficient, friendly team who have quick responses, efficient and professional but also inclusive. Listened and did what we requested as clients with all the advice we needed. Felt like a collaboration and safe hands. Clear billing, good technology around the zoom meetings. Clear explanations of the work that was done for us. Good value for money.’
‘Tees Law have always been quick to respond clearly and resolve matters efficiently whenever needed, I always feel I can trust them to do the right thing which makes dealing with any matters less stressful for me.’
‘Nicola Healy always provides a prompt and comprehensive response to any requests we make. We have received positive feedback from those clients that we refer to her for estate planning matters.’
‘Friendly and approachable team who adapted well to the challenges of Covid.’
‘The firm/practice stands out as a responsive, solid adviser as well as being conscious of professional fee spend.’
- Advising a client on mitigating future inheritance tax and avoiding the breaking up of the property portfolio worth £12m.
- Advising executors on an estate worth over £4.5m involving uncovering anomalies in a substantial collection of arts and antiques.
- Advising a client on updating their Wills due to significant changes to their estate worth £7 million, involving livery, European property and a substantial pension.
Private client > Family Tier 3
At Tees Law in Cambridge 'everything is done with transparency and there is complete honesty so that clients are aware of all potential outcomes'. Clients describe 'a solid group of family lawyers who are personable and approachable'. Practice head Clare Pilsworth 'makes clients feel comfortable and provides clear precise direction'. She has a wealth of experience in all areas of family law, is collaboratively trained and is an experienced mediator. She works in close collaboration with the firm's other offices outside East Anglia to handle complex divorce and financial matters.
‘Tees were extremely good to work with as a company as a whole. For somebody like myself who has little to no knowledge on the legal system regarding family matters they were very fast to have me relaxed with completely thorough information. Everything was done with transparency so I always knew exactly what was happening at what time and the next stages, as it were. An extremely good company to be associated with and I would definitely recommend them!’
‘I always felt as though when I was dealing with Tees that my case was top priority. The lengths that in particular Clare Pilsworth went to make me feel comfortable and clear on what was happening made me feel this way. Always contactable with a lovely admin team making everything seamless. Away from the legal obligations they are all just lovely people!’
‘The team are friendly, conscientious and take the time to understand who you are and your requirements. They provide honest advice and feedback which will be in your best interests – even if it’s to advise you against something. They endeavour to always provide good solutions to move forward in the most affordable way. I felt very supported.’
‘Personable and approachable – a solid group of family lawyers.’
‘Clare Pilsworth – a good collaborative family lawyer.’
- Advising a client on divorce, Children Act and financial proceedings with complexities arising for interrelation with criminal matters and interim funding and taking a creative approach to Children Act matters.
- Advising a client in relation to a variation of maintenance and financial remedy order due to cohabitation and redundancy.
- Advising a client on resolving financial matters through a collaborative process.
Tees Law is known for its recent work in strategic promotion and hybrid agreements, both in Cambridgeshire and also surrounding counties, though its broad practice also handles the acquisition of residential development sites, agricultural land. It also advises on landlord and tenant work. Its recent highlights include assisting a local charity with the disposal of a strategic parcel of agricultural land for more than £18m. James Dowson provides 'prompt and efficient service with a high level of expertise'. The firm hired associate Piers Woods from Brachers to bolster the team.
Other key lawyers:
Piers Woods; Catherine Wilson
‘They offer a wide range of in-house services – the partners are well experienced.’
‘James Dowson provides prompt and efficient service with a high level of expertise.’
‘I’m very pleased with the continued quality and depth of service received from the property conveyancing team, both with purchases and sales.’
‘I have worked with James Dowson for many years now and he continues to deliver good, balanced advice in a timely manner. I have and still would recommend him to business colleagues.’
‘Catherine Wilson has been dealing with property sales for us on our last two sites and has proved to be very thorough, whilst actively pursuing the conveyance process and keeping things moving when other firms aren’t quite so active.’
- Advising a local charity in connection with the disposal of a strategic parcel of agricultural land for over £18m to a Cambridge College for commercial development.
- Advising a property investor in connection with the refinance of a portfolio of in excess of 40 city centre Cambridge properties and the subsequent transfer of the entire portfolio to a limited company.
- Advising a confidential client on their large and varied portfolio worth £20m.
Operating out of Bishop's Stortford, Chelmsford and Cambridge, Tees Law advises clients on the full range of relevant matters concerning contentious trusts and probate, such as challenges to the validity of wills and claims for reasonable provision from estates, as well as investigations into mental capacity in the making of wills and advising on inheritance issues related to blended families. Additionally, clients have access to its sister company, Tees Weath, to provide systematic financial planning. Practice head Caroline Metcalf specialises in highly complex trusts and probate cases.
Other key lawyers:
Jason Torrance; Emily Jones
‘I often recommend Caroline Metcalf to anyone seeking advice and representation in contentious probate and trust matters. She is incredibly industrious and very focused on looking after the best interests of the client in a pragmatic fashion. She has also had a lot of experience of contentious private client matters.’
‘Total empathy and understanding.’
Tees Law provides a range of services to clients, including handling renewable energy issues, infrastructure projects, agricultural property work and mineral exploitation matters. Based in Bishop’s Stortford, the commercial property team handles residential portfolio acquisitions and disposals, sales of high-value development land, and commercial and residential management work. Practice leader Kay Piper deals with a range of complex work including leasehold enfranchisement, development and finance mandates, as well as general sales and purchases, while David Miller handles diversification projects and senior associate John Buckley is also recommended.
‘Tees Law has in-depth acumen, experience and knowledge in all matters relating to development, planning and bringing large scale projects to fruition. They helped bring a conclusion during all the vicissitudes of lockdown.’
‘David Miller is incredibly detailed, hard working and imaginative to get the answers you require. Often ends up directing the deal from the off between all the parties involved.’
‘Kay Piper is a partner at Tees Law and we found her very professional, intuitive and she provided a personal service.’
‘John Buckley quickly identifies the key legal and practical issues, and works with fellow professionals to deliver results for clients.’
‘Efficient, knowledgeable and reliable. Response time is excellent to queries and a range of team experience to call upon.’
‘David Miller has very extensive knowledge of the renewables sector and is very clear in his mission to protect his client’s interests.’
‘We have found Kay Piper excellent in her approach, attitude and diligence with a wealth of knowledge on her finger tips to ensure work is carried out proficiently.’
‘I have been using the Tees commercial property team for many years now. Despite the huge challenges of the last year, they have been helpful and responsive. Where government restrictions have hampered normal relations, they have found ways to facilitate ongoing practice enabling us to keep our projects moving forward, mainly by rapidly adapting their use of IT systems.’
Birchanger Investment Company Ltd.
Braybrooke Settled Estate
Greene King Brewing & Retailing
Hastingwood Developments (Harlow) Ltd.
Haverhill Properties Ltd .
Hereward Estates Ltd.
Pub Prop Ltd.
Vacton Properties (South) Ltd.
- Advised a client on the sale of 350 acres of development land at a price in excess of £60m.
- Acted for a global logistics service provider in the sale of its UK commercial premises for £2m.
- Advised a renewable energy client on the development, acquisition and long-term management of large-scale solar projects and smart energy solutions.
At Tees Law, seasoned litigator David Perry attracts a strong flow of referral work from accountants, insolvency practitioners and other law firms. Under his leadership, the practice is seen as a go-to for high-value and complex contentious insolvency cases. Perry particularly excels in acting for both insolvency practitioners and individuals or directors who are faced with proceedings against them. Matters involve issues such as wrongful trading, fraud, and validity and enforcement of security, among others.
‘I am impressed with the knowledge and experience of the partner I have been dealing with.’
‘The partner always responds in a timely manner, often outside of normal working hours. I am made to feel confident and supported.’
‘David Perry is the standout partner for commercial litigation. He can can be counted on for realistic, commercially savvy and almost encyclopaedic knowledge of insolvency law.’
- Advising a director of a company in respect of insolvency proceedings brought against him by HMRC and the subsequent satellite litigation worth in excess of £110 million.
- Acting for the respondents in proceedings brought by the liquidators of a holiday business against its former directors and company secretary for breach of fiduciary duty and wrongful trading.
- Providing bespoke insolvency advice to a parent company client on debts owed to its subsidiary.
Public sector Tier 4
The team at Tees Law is well regarded for its work in the education sector, in particular working with special educational needs and disability matters. Senior associate Polly Kerr - who divides her time between Royston and Bishop’s Stortford - leads a team which advises parents, teachers, students, schools, local authorities and educational organisations on a range of contentious and non-contentious matters.
‘The practice has specialist expertise in the area of education. This is particularly important to schools where understanding of the context within which the organisation operates is imperative.’
‘My public law/sector work with Tees focuses on education law, particularly relating to SEN, exclusions, discrimination and public law. They offer a great deal of expertise in these areas. ’
‘Polly Kerr has exceptional knowledge and understanding of the area she works in. She demonstrates extremely good working relationships with the families and professionals she works with. Her dedication and commitment is exceptional. ’
‘Polly Kerr has very good instinctive judgment, knows the law in this area well, and works tirelessly for her clients. ’
Bishop’s Stortford College
- Acting for a client following their son’s permanent exclusion from two schools, both of which subsequently withdrew the permanent exclusions and neither of which were reviewed by Governor’s Disciplinary Committees. The matter involved advising on both judicial review, Governor’s Disciplinary Committees review and a disability discrimination claim.
- Advising clients in a successful Section I Appeal on behalf of their child who has a diagnosis of ASD and is pre-verbal, where the Local Authority tried to send the child to a closer school, rather than one that met their needs best.
- Representing client parents in successfully bringing an appeal against the Local Authority for the content of their child’s Education, Health and Care Plan.
Tees Law > Firm Profile
Tees offers support to clients in all categories, from private individuals and independent businesses through to professional partnerships and national corporations and institutions.
The firm: Tees has a strong reputation for excellence and commitment to providing the highest levels of service to clients from across the region and nationwide. Its approachable lawyers offer an in-depth, responsive and cross-disciplinary service. Tees philosophy is to take time to get to know clients, their goals and circumstances, so the lawyers can achieve the best possible results for them.
Wortley Byers and Tees merger: Wortley Byers, based in Brentwood, Essex, merged with Tees with effect from 1st January 2019. The merger has increased the range of services and the depth of resources significantly and provided additional sector expertise in addition to Tees serving an even larger geographical area. The merger unites two firms who have long respected each other’s successes and approach to client care.
Tees history: Tees has been part of the local community for over a century, supporting our clients from generation to generation. Historically, Tees growth has been driven by strategic mergers. Established in 1913, Tees has grown from a traditional family firm with a strong agricultural bias, into a dynamic full-service practice with six offices across East Anglia and the South East, employing more than 300 staff including our financial services team. In 2016 the Tees merged with Limbach Banham Solicitors to create the Royston office. Merging with Irena Spence and Co Solicitors in Cambridge brought significant extra depth to Tees residential team in the city. Wortley Byers from Brentwood can trace its history back over 50 years to Stamp Wortley, a well-established law firm which merged in 1967 with another firm to become Wortley Byers.
Tees offices: Tees has six offices: Brentwood, Bishop’s Stortford, Cambridge, Chelmsford, Royston and Saffron Walden. Its ultra-modern 20,000sq ft offices in Bishop’s Stortford offer exemplary client facilities. Tees is close to Stansted Airport and the M11 and M25, with fast road and train connections to London, the Midlands, the South East and East Anglia.
Tees growth: With turnover of £22m last year, the firm is currently on track to increase this to £24m in the next financial year. The strategy is to attract the best legal talent in the region and combine that talent with a £1.5m investment in IT that is already making working processes more efficient. This will allow lawyers to spend more time with their clients.
Tees awards: Recent awards include:
- Winner of the Excellence in Technology and Innovation Firm Award at the Cambridgeshire Law Society Excellence Awards 2021
- Winner of the Residential Property Team of the Year Award at the Cambridgeshire Law Society Excellence Awards 2021
- Tees were also Highly Commended for Injury Litigation Team of the Year, and Private Client Associate Chris Claxton-Shirley received a Highly Commended as a Rising Star.
- Best Trainer – Medium Regional Firm 2019 at the LawCareers.Net Training & Recruitment Awards recognising the hard work put into making Tees training scheme a success
- Janine Collier, Executive Partner and Co-Head of the Cambridge office, Cambridge District Law Society’s ‘Woman Lawyer of the Year’ Award 2019
- Ashton Hunt, Group Managing Director, Small-Medium Business IoD East Director of the Year Award 2019
Types of work undertaken
Private client: the firm is renowned for its specialist private client team. The team advise on the preparation of wills, wealth protection and inheritance tax planning, the administration of complex estates, inheritance and trust services and on all elderly client matters. The firm provides the whole range of complementary private client services to individuals, with high-quality advice in family matters, litigation, property, conveyancing and regulatory areas.
Agriculture: the excellent reputation of the Tees agricultural team is reflected by the firm being one of just 16 legal practices on the national NFU panel. In 2018, Tees was successful in its bid to be re-appointed to the panel for the next three years. It advises in all aspects of agricultural law, including restructuring farm enterprises for inheritance tax and capital gains purposes. The firm continues to act for farming and land-owning clients in contracting the acquisition and sale of farmland for development.
Commercial property: the reach of the Tees commercial property team goes far beyond its geographical locations of the South East and East Anglia, and it receives many instructions from London and across the UK, acting in transactions ranging from retail and development projects through to agricultural businesses. The team handles options, overage and subject to planning deals, and also acts for development funders. Its lawyers have extensive experience in all aspects of commercial conveyancing including portfolio work, acquisitions and sales, landlord and tenant matters, planning and licensing.
Family: the family department specialises in high-value and complex claims, including those involving foreign property and cross-border or cross-jurisdictional issues. Whilst the firm offers a constructive and conciliatory approach to family law through their mediation and collaborative practice, it is also highly effective in litigation when required. The family department is also highly regarded for its expertise in representing parents and grandparents in children’s proceedings.
Corporate and commercial: Tees’ corporate and commercial team acts for clients in corporate finance, mergers, acquisitions and disposals and structured shareholder agreements, company restructuring, data protection, intellectual property, partnership (including LLPs) and employment matters and advise on a wide variety of commercial arrangements in various business sectors including transport and logistics, agriculture, hotel and leisure, professional services, technology, pharmaceuticals and education.
Clinical negligence: the firm boasts one of the foremost groups of clinical negligence solicitors in the region, with a team of experts specialising in brain injury, cancer, psychiatric injury, obstetric and gynaecology cases.
Litigation: the firm’s strong litigation team specialises in tailored solutions for clients in all forms of litigation, arbitration and ADR with a reputation for its ability to handle complex matters involving multiple issues. The team deal with all types of dispute both for large corporate clients, smaller businesses, entrepreneurs and individuals, ranging from contractual disputes and shareholder agreements, through to negligence, insolvency and contentious property issues for landowners, landlords or tenants. The department is experienced in handling high-value as well as high-volume cases, fixed fee debt collection and recovery work through to group actions.
Financial services: In addition to our legal services listed above, Tees also has a complementary and integrated independent financial services team which offer financial planning advice including investments, retirement planning, family and business protection, estate planning and wealth preservation, long-term care and equity release, together with pre-paid funeral plans. They are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
|Senior Partner||Catherine Mowatfirstname.lastname@example.org||01223 702304|
|Group Managing Director||Ashton Huntemail@example.com||01279 710660|
|Head of Commercial and Civil and Regulatory litigation||Darren Perksfirstname.lastname@example.org||01279 710619|
|Head of Agriculture, Private Client||Letitia Glaisteremail@example.com||01763 295850|
|Head of Clinical Negligence||Janine Collierfirstname.lastname@example.org||01223 702303|
|Head of Agriculture, Commercial||David Milleremail@example.com||01279 710657|
|Head of Family||Sally Powellfirstname.lastname@example.org||01279 710651|
|Head of Business Law, Employment||Robert Whitakeremail@example.com||01245 293197|
|Head of Residential Property||Anne Ellissfirstname.lastname@example.org||01277 268304|
|Head of Commercial Property||Aaron Caneemail@example.com||01277 268398|
|Joint Head of Private Client||Nicola Haversfirstname.lastname@example.org||01279 322516|
|Joint Head of Private Client||Sarah Walkeremail@example.com||01279 322518|
|Chris Claxton-Shirley||Associate Chris is an Associate Solicitor in the Private Client team at Tees.…||View Profile|
|Janine Collier||Executive Partner, Clinical Negligence and Personal Injury Janine is the Head of the Medical…||View Profile|
|Tim Deeming||Partner specialising exclusively on medical negligence claims specifically including catastrophic injury claims;…||View Profile|
|James Dowson||James Dowson is a partner and heads up the Cambridge property team.…||View Profile|
|Catherine Mowat||Senior Partner Partner in private client department, leading the Cambridge team, specialising in…||View Profile|
|Clare Pilsworth||Partner and Head of the Cambridge Office Clare is a partner at…||View Profile|
|Vicki Seabrook||Consultant. Vicki is a medical negligence solicitor with over 40 years’ experience.…||View Profile|
|Angela Sewell||Solicitor Specialises in the area of wills and estate planning, Trusts and…||View Profile|
|Irena Spence||Consultant specialising in Property work.||View Profile|
|Sara Stabler||Senior Associate Focussed on commercial and proactive advice on law and strategy so as…||View Profile|
|Alexander Waples||Associate. Alexander specialises in acting on sales and acquisitions of commercial property,…||View Profile|
Staff FiguresNumber of UK partners : 22 Number of other UK fee-earners : 128
- Insurance > Personal injury and clinical negligence: claimant
- Private client > Contentious trusts and probate
- Private client > Agriculture and estates
- Private client > Family: Essex
- Real estate > Commercial property: Essex
Top Tier Firm Rankings
- Dispute resolution > Commercial litigation: Cambridge
- Private client > Agriculture and estates
- Private client > Personal tax, trusts and probate: Cambridge
- Corporate and commercial > Corporate and commercial: Essex
- Dispute resolution > Commercial litigation: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx
- Dispute resolution > Commercial litigation: Essex
- Employment > Employment: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx
- Employment > Employment: Essex
- Insurance > Personal injury and clinical negligence: claimant
- Private client > Family: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx
- Private client > Personal tax, trusts and probate: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx
- Private client > Personal tax, trusts and probate: Essex
- Private client > Family
- Real estate > Commercial property: Cambridge
- Private client > Contentious trusts and probate
- Real estate > Commercial property: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx