Prior to joining Dickinson Gleeson, Guillaume worked for Jersey’s Attorney General within the Jersey Law Officers’ Department, providing advice to Ministers of the States of Jersey and governmental departments in relation to a range of issues including human rights law, European law, constitutional law and as to statutory interpretation. He also worked as a legal adviser to the States of Jersey Police making numerous court appearances as a prosecutor
Guillaume Staal > Dickinson Gleeson > St Helier, Jersey > Lawyer Profile
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Guillaume Staal is a Partner at Dickinson Gleeson and an Advocate of the Royal Court Of Jersey who joined the firm in April 2012.
Guillaume’s principal areas of expertise are in trust and commercial litigation. Guillaume advises clients in respect of a range of issues including contractual disputes, enforcement of foreign judgments and associated freezing and disclosure orders and insolvency matters.
Guillaume has been involved in a range of innovative Jersey cases including securing an interim freezing order over a trust in aid of proceedings brought by a non-beneficiary before overcoming the ‘firewall provisions’ of the Trusts (Jersey) Law 1984 to obtain directions in Jersey giving substantial effect to an English order setting aside the trust ( JRC 267A), one of Jersey’s first statutory Hastings Bass and mistake cases ( JRC 048) and working with James Dickinson to establish that a common intention constructive trust may (as a matter of Jersey law) arise in relation to a loan account to a Jersey company ( JRC108) and establishing (on appeal from the Royal Court to the Court of Appeal) that a law firm has locus standi to recover documents that have been improperly obtained from it ( JCA 095).
A current highlight is our instructing by a former trustee of a charitable trust defending allegations that the trust was a sham. The claim is brought by administrators of the estate of a HNWI who is alleged to have been the economic settlor of the charitable trust in circumstances where the assets of the charitable trust are alleged to have been worth circa £30m.
The case is interesting for a number of reasons. Firstly, establishing a sham is notoriously difficult given the legal and evidential hurdles to overcome. Secondly the Jersey law on sham trusts is always evolving and this case will (if pursued to its conclusion) present the Jersey court with the opportunity to develop the law further. Thirdly the events in issue in the proceedings span a period of over 20 years rich in documentary records including in relation to the HNWI’s colourful personal life. Fourthly the proceedings involve different jurisdictions including Jersey, England, Panama and Liechtenstein. Fifthly there is substantial inequality of arms between the plaintiffs (professional accountants funded by the very substantial estate of the HNWI) and our client (a retired investment adviser with significant health issues).
Guillaume is also regularly instructed in relation to probate and employment law matters.
Guillaume is described as “responsive, considered and pragmatic” by Legal 500 (2018) and was named as one of 2019 eprivateclient Top 35 Under 35 – Channel Islands.
ARIES, ConTrA, AIJA
Out of the office, Guillaume is kept busy and endlessly entertained by his three young children.
Lawyer Rankings(Rising stars)
An independent firm with a track record of representing key names in the island’s financial services economy, Dickinson Gleeson is active in a range of Chancery litigation representing various different stakeholders. James Dickinson‘s work includes complex cases with issues of legal professional privilege among others, as well as commercial disputes and asset recovery matters. James Gleeson represents leading trust companies in high-profile trusts cases including the Z Trusts and Crociani cases (in the latter, he represents the new trustees, Ocorian). Senior associate Guillaume Staal is a key name below partner level, and in 2019 well-regarded senior associate Pierre Ali-Noor joined from Mourant.
- Rising stars - Jersey > Dispute resolution > Dispute resolution
- Dispute resolution - Jersey > Dispute resolution