Dickinson Gleeson > St Helier, Jersey > Firm Profile

Dickinson Gleeson

Dispute resolution Tier 3

Contentious trust and estate matters form the core of Dickinson Gleeson‘s dispute resolution practice. Bankruptcy, breach of duty and fraud proceedings are also areas of strength. Leading the team are founding partners James Dickinson and James Gleeson, both of whom have broad practices spanning commercial disputes, trust litigation and asset recovery. Guillaume Staal counts HNWIs, trust companies and financial institutions among his clients, and specialises in trust and estate litigation. Senior associate Jonathan Barham handles breach of directors' duties and trusts claims, as well as civil fraud and insolvency issues.

Practice head(s):

James Dickinson; James Gleeson

Other key lawyers:


‘James Gleeson is very responsive and handles complex litigation cases with a lot of experience.’

‘You can count on James Gleeson to remind you of the deadlines to be met to ensure that all procedural documents are drafted and filed on time!’

‘The litigation team at Dickinson Gleeson is very experienced in complex, multi-jurisdictional litigation. They work extremely hard for their clients; they understand the client’s commercial objectives and are able to navigate their clients through even the knottiest legal disputes. They are a pleasure to work with, and an excellent firm to instruct if a Jersey firm is needed in a wider multi-jurisdictional dispute.’

‘James Dickinson is a very hard worker and an experienced litigator who can hold the most complex case together and see the key points: he is able to see the wood for the trees. He is a pleasure to work with. His experience in litigation in Jersey – particularly with a multi-jurisdictional element – is worth its weight in gold. Jonathan Barham is equally hard-working. He spots the key points in the case very quickly and is able to break a case open to his client’s advantage.’

‘A strong reputation for litigation.’

‘James Gleeson is an exceptional advocate. I have found him to be insightful and thorough, but also reliable, agreeable, and always willing to go the extra mile.’

‘Dickinson Gleeson is the standout smaller firm in Jersey, free of the conflicts which affect other firm’s abilities to take on litigation and act with a set of deeply experienced principals.’

‘They are nimble and very responsive. In my view, the quality of the legal service provided is as good as any large Channel Islands firm. They work well within a team of lawyers. They punch well above their weight.’

Key clients

Geneva Trust Company (GTC) SA

Redox PLC (acting by its trustee in bankruptcy)

Loan Assignment Group of Association

Jersey > Private client, trusts and tax Tier 3

Dickinson Gleeson‘s private clients practice specialises in supporting owner-managed businesses, and is well placed to handle both contentious and non-contentious trusts issues. Leading the team is Craig Swart, who advises on a range of trusts matters, and also has experience in matters of insolvency and asset tracing. James Dickinson and James Gleeson are litigation specialists who act for HNWIs and their families, trustees, law firms and financial institutions.

Practice head(s):

Craig Swart


‘Dickinson Gleeson is a very responsive firm. They are accessible and reliable and provide advice consistently within deadlines. They are also helpful with exchanging thoughts and examining alternative solutions. Advice provided is clear and concise.’

‘Craig Swart is approachable and knowledgeable. He is responsive and consistently professional.’

‘They are hard-working, experienced, and are able to turn a client’s commercial objectives into legal reality. They are experienced in trusts-related litigation involving Jersey trusts which get embroiled in multi-jurisdictional disputes, including freezing orders in Jersey and disclosure orders.’

‘James Dickinson is a hard worker, an exceptionally experienced lawyer, and I would have no hesitation in instructing him in any private client dispute in Jersey.’

‘DG are very much partner-led in their interactions, with excellent knowledge and capabilities in both contentious and non-contentious offshore matters. This is a differentiator to other firms that we work with.’

‘Craig Swart is commercial in his approach and has a strong understanding of our client needs. Craig regularly has tight deadlines and timelines put on him by us/our clients and always delivers.’

‘Craig Swart brings real experience and savvy to his matters, as well as a very approachable and engaging manner.’

‘James Dickinson is incredibly able and available and works all hours for his clients. Excellent strategically. A real wordsmith when it comes to his drafting, which is superb. From what I have seen of his associates, they are cut from the same cloth.’

Key clients

Geneva Trust Company (GTC) SA-Z Trusts

Geneva Trust Company (GTC) SA – Tchenguiz

 Dickinson Gleeson is a multi-award-winning, dynamic and innovative specialist disputes firm which acts in relation to contentious trusts and estates, commercial, fraud, company, funds and insolvency litigation. The firm also provides non-contentious trust, corporate and lending advice.

The firm is conflict-free and has acted in some of the highest value cases to have come before the Jersey Courts, on behalf of both claimants and defendants. It also regularly acts for clients in complex trust matters and on Jersey aspects of international transactions. Clients include financial institutions, government agencies, professional firms, religious bodies, executors, trustees, protectors, ultra-HNWIs and HNWIs.

Its litigators, who have historically been involved in some of the Island’s largest cases, continue to be involved in complex, cutting-edge and high value cases, in which claims run in to the tens of millions and the courts make new law.

The firm’s non-contentious trust advisory/corporate practice continues to see an expansion of its trust company client base. Highlights of the last 12 months have included complex and high value trust restructuring work.

Types of work undertaken
Contentious trust and estates: representing UHNWI and HNWI settlors, trustees, executors, protectors and beneficiaries in relation to high profile, high value and complex contentious trust and estates cases, including breach of trust claims, sham claims and all types of administrative directions applications.

Fraud asset tracing and insolvency: representing clients in relation to fraud, asset tracing claims and insolvency procedures, including securing worldwide freezing and Norwich Pharmacal orders with and without gagging orders.

 Company and funds litigation: representing clients in company and funds litigation, including shareholders disputes, unfair prejudice claims, derivative claims and the defence of director’s liability claims.

 Corporate and finance: advising on a wide range of corporate matters through the life cycle of a Jersey entity, including establishing, buying and selling, re-domiciling, winding up and reinstating Jersey companies and assisting clients to structure groups to acquire assets. Also advising in relation to loans made to Jersey entities and security taken under Jersey law.

 Non-contentious trust advisory: advising trust companies, UHNWI and HNWI settlors, protectors and beneficiaries in relation to all issues affecting the establishment, administration and termination of all types of Jersey trusts.

 Private client: advising UHNWI, HNWI and professionals (both based in Jersey and overseas) in relation to the structuring and administration of Jersey estates and related matters.

 Regulatory: advising trust companies, beneficiaries and UBOs in relation to compliance with regulatory and anti-money laundering legislation. The firm has undertaken investigative work pursuant to directions of the Jersey Financial Services Commission.

 Employment: advising in relation to non-contentious and contentious employment matters, including the dismissal of employees and enforcement of restrictive covenants.

Department Name Email Telephone
Dispute Resolution James Dickinson
Dispute Resolution James Gleeson
Private client, Trusts and Tax Craig Swart
Probate and Employment Guillaume Staal
Photo Name Position Profile
Jonathan Barham photo Jonathan Barham Jonathan is a Senior Associate in the Dispute Resolution team and deals…
Emma Broster photo Emma Broster Associate
James Dickinson photo James Dickinson James is the firm’s Managing Partner and a partner in the Firm’s…
Isaac Freckleton photo Isaac Freckleton Associate
James Gleeson photo James Gleeson James Gleeson TEP is an Advocate of the Royal Court of Jersey…
Rachel Moynihan photo Rachel Moynihan Associate
Guillaume Staal photo Guillaume Staal Guillaume Staal is a Partner at Dickinson Gleeson and an Advocate of…
Craig Swart photo Craig Swart Craig Swart TEP is an Advocate of the Royal Court of Jersey…
Photo Name Position Profile
Correen Begeman photo Correen Begeman Associate
Julia Smirnova photo Julia Smirnova Solicitor
Number of UK partners : 4
Number of other UK fee-earners : 7