Firm Profile > Mills & Co > Newcastle upon Tyne, England

Mills & Co

Transport and shipping Tier 1

Shipping and international trade boutique Mills & Co acts on a range of maritime work for clients including P&I clubs, H&M underwriters, ship owners, operators and managers, charterers, commodity traders and shipyards. Guy Mills has particular expertise in charterparty, bill of lading and MOA disputes.

Practice head(s):

Guy Mills

Commodities disputes Tier 2

Mills & Co in Newcastle upon Tyne is a specialist trade and shipping firm that has more than 25 years' experience in the market and frequently competes with larger London-based firms for a role in Grain and Feed Trade Association (GAFTA) and Federation of Oils, Seeds and Fats Associations (FOSFA) arbitrations. It acts for multinational trading houses, as well as for smaller market participants. Neville Hopper is the key contact and he is often present in shipping and commodity arbitrations under London Maritime Arbitrators Association, GAFTA,  FOSFA, Sugar, London Court of International Arbitration and International Court of Arbitration rules, as well as in High Court proceedings. Key partner Jonathan Green has a similar practice due to his focus on charterparty, international sale contract and bill of lading matters. Simon Williams, who focuses predominantly on ship construction, conversion and repair disputes, is also a key figure in the firm's commodities disputes practice.

Practice head(s):

Neville Hopper

Other key lawyers:

Shipping Tier 3

Newcastle-based specialist maritime and international trade offering, Mills & Co is active across contentious and non-contentious shipping mandates. The team is regularly engaged on admiralty matters such as collision, salvage, total loss, explosions, fire, grounding, and pollution and it has experience assisting in governmental investigations and inquiries. Ship-related personal injury work is also a key focus. The team's disputes practice is often engaged in arbitrations and high-profile matters; in a recent example, it acted for the owners in the closely-watched Supreme Court case, Volcafe v CSAV. Guy Mills handles high-profile disputes.

Mills & Co Solicitors Limited (“Mills & Co”) specialises in international trade, commodities and shipping law, continuing a proud tradition of Newcastle-upon-Tyne based English shipping lawyers.

The firm: The firm offers a broad range of services focussed on the shipping and international trade industries, which allows it to maintain a high level of expertise and market knowledge. The team’s legal advice reflects its detailed understanding of those industries and of clients’ commercial needs.

The firm’s objective is to provide good-quality service at a reasonable price. Mills & Co’s competitors and opponents in most of the firm’s litigation and arbitration cases are London law firms or their overseas offices. The firm aims to provide work to the standards of the best of the London market at a cost which gives its clients the benefit of Newcastle’s lower overheads. This strategy has found favour with many of the world’s leading shipowners, P&I Clubs and commodity traders who form the bulk of the firm’s clients.

Reflecting the firm’s approach, its recruitment policy has always been focussed on quality over quantity. It aims to be able to devote to its junior lawyers the training time and supervision necessary to maintain and build on its standing in the global market.

Types of work undertaken: The firm handles all aspects of shipping law, including both contentious and non-contentious work. The firm’s clients include marine insurers, shipowners, shipmanagers, shipbuilders, shiprepairers, charterers, commodity traders, marine suppliers and many others within the shipping industry.

Shipping – contentious: the firm regularly advises and assists clients in connection with dry and wet shipping disputes, as well as ship building, repair and sale/purchase disputes. It provides urgent legal assistance with live problems as well as acting for clients in court proceedings, arbitration and mediation (whether in London or elsewhere). Several lawyers in the firm handle shipping related personal injury work.

Of the firm’s lawyers, Peter Sim and Andreas Welz are ex-seafarers. Together with Guy Mills they commonly advise on admiralty matters including collision, salvage, total loss, explosion/fire, grounding, and pollution. The firm also has significant experience assisting in governmental investigations and inquiries by bodies such as the MAIB and MCA.

Shipping – non-contentious: the firm handles a large amount of non-contentious work. This includes, for example, giving advice and assistance to clients who are having a ship built, repaired, bought, sold or chartered. The firm also assists in the drafting of terms and conditions of sale or carriage, or shipbuilding or shiprepairing contracts.

The firm’s international trade and commodities practice covers both contentious and non-contentious matters. The firm’s clients include oil majors, blue chip mining and trading companies, independent traders, brokers and other companies involved in international trade.

International trade and commodities – contentious work: the firm advises and assists clients on disputes concerning a variety of different commodities, such as sugar, grains, vegetable oils, metals and ores, coal, biofuels, crude oil or other petroleum products. This work includes consideration of sale contracts or other related trading contracts such as letters of credit, storage agreements, joint ventures, bills of lading and charterparties. The firm also regularly advises on live disputes as well as arbitrations (such as LCIA, ICC, GAFTA, FOSFA, LME and the RSA/SAL), court proceedings and mediation.

International trade and commodities – non-contentious work: the firm advises upon, drafts and reviews many different contracts involved in the international sale and transportation of goods. Examples include one-off or template sale contracts, general terms and conditions for the sale and purchase of commodities, storage and warehousing agreements and other agreements covering commercial services or arrangements.

Mills & Co and Mills & Co Solicitors are trading names of Mills & Co Solicitors Limited.

Photo Name Position Profile
 Jon Boaden  photo Jon Boaden Jon is a director of Mills & Co. Solicitors Limited. Jon advises…
 Mark Doyle  photo Mark Doyle Mark is a director of Mills & Co. Solicitors Limited. Mark specialises…
 Jonathan Green  photo Jonathan Green Jonathan is a director of Mills & Co. Solicitors Limited. Jonathan advises…
 Neville Hopper  photo Neville Hopper Neville is a director of Mills & Co. Solicitors Limited.  Neville specialises…
 Nicola Jeanes  photo Nicola Jeanes Nicola qualified as a solicitor in 1991. She joined Rayfield Mills on…
 Guy Mills  photo Guy Mills Guy qualified as a solicitor in 1991 and founded Mills & Co…
 Peter Sim  photo Peter Sim Peter qualified as a solicitor in 1990 working at Norton Rose. He…
 Michael Smith  photo Michael Smith Mike is a director of Mills & Co. Solicitors Limited. Mike handles…
Mr James Stokoe  photo Mr James Stokoe James is a director of Mills & Co. Solicitors Limited.  He handles…
 Fenella Tookey photo Fenella Tookey Fenella is a director of Mills & Co. Solicitors Limited. Fenella specialises…
 Andreas Welz  photo Andreas Welz Andreas is a director of Mills & Co. Solicitors Limited. He specialises…
 Simon Williams  photo Simon Williams Simon was called to the bar in 1996 and joined Mills &…
Number of UK directors (formerly known as partners) : 13
Number of other UK fee-earners : 10