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SOMERFIELD HOUSE, 59 LONDON ROAD, MAIDSTONE, KENT, ME16 8JH, ENGLAND
Tel:
Work 01622 690691
Fax:
Fax 01622 681430
DX:
4806 MAIDSTONE-1
Email:
Web:
www.brachers.co.uk

South East: Corporate and commercial

Corporate and commercial: Kent, Surrey, Sussex
Corporate and commercial: Kent, Surrey, Sussex - ranked: tier 3

Brachers

Brachers  is highlighted for combining efficiency with 'good knowledge of a wide variety of sectors and strength across the team'. Led by James Bullock, the team acted on a number of MBOs, including assisting the management team on the MBO of UK Medical from US-based Becton Dickinson, a matter that was complicated due to ongoing services, supply and distribution agreements and the negotiation of a share sale agreement. In other recent work, the group handled private equity acquisitions and transactions in the energy sector that were frequently led by Matthew Simmonds  and Erol Huseyin.

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South East: Dispute resolution

Commercial litigation: Kent, Surrey, Sussex
Commercial litigation: Kent, Surrey, Sussex - ranked: tier 4

Brachers

Brachers acts for a range of clients including SMEs and larger corporates and handles disputes in the financial, healthcare and pharmaceutical sectors among others. Michael Oatham has considerable experience in complex commercial and insolvency actions, including shareholder and contractual disputes. His recent work includes acting for a party with regard to a dispute over a joint venture, and he is also representing separate clients in a dispute with a wealth management company. Allis Beasley is also noted for her specialism in all manner of real estate disputes.

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Debt recovery
Debt recovery - ranked: tier 1

Brachers

Brachers, according to clients, is 'a trusted partner' for debt recovery and debt administration and fields a team that is'well established and that also provides value for money'.Its clients include SMEs and large corporations across a range of industries, especially finance, transport and logistics, and utilities. Michael Oathamheads the litigation and integrated debt recovery practice, Robert Thompson leads the collections and recoveries group and director of operations Graham Wallishandles insolvency portfolios.

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South East: Finance

Insolvency and corporate recovery
Insolvency and corporate recovery - ranked: tier 3

Brachers

The 'approachable' practice at Brachers in Maidstone combines insolvency and corporate recovery work, advising on insolvency proceedings, corporate risk analysis, shareholders' rights and remedies, directors' duties, asset recovery and fraud investigation. Graham Wallis further provides insolvency portfolio management advice to institutional creditors. Clients come from a variety of sectors, including financial services, education, construction, utilities and transport. The 'astute and commercially minded' Michael Oatham represented KPMG as trustee in a bankruptcy, which involved a court application for the realisation of the bankrupt's interest in a property and resulted in a voluntary sale and a payment of more than £191,000 to the bankruptcy estate. Mazars, Grant Thornton, Baker Tilly and BDO also form part of the client base.

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South East: Human resources

Employment: Kent, Surrey, Sussex
Employment: Kent, Surrey, Sussex - ranked: tier 2

Brachers

Brachers has 'a strong employment team with bright friendly personalities and a pragmatic common sense approach to the resolution of issues'.  In addition to corporates, its clients are drawn from public bodies and NHS trusts and it has strong sector focus in areas such as healthcare, education, manufacturing and tourism. It also has a dedicated HR consultancy arm. Practice head Catherine Daw is highly regarded for the breadth of her expertise, as is Colin Smith. Associate Rachael Russell is, according to one client, 'insightful and knowledgeable' and has 'a way of removing the stress from a difficult situation'.

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Health and safety
Health and safety - ranked: tier 3

Brachers

Brachers' health and safety team is 'highly attentive, always available and willing to talk through any issues', with team head Lee May singled out for his 'strong in-depth knowledge of his subject area'. The practice acts for public and private sector clients, and is noted for its construction, healthcare and education sector expertise. John Sheath has more than 30 years' experience handling inquests, corporate manslaughter, and risk management and governance issues.

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South East: Insurance

Clinical negligence: defendant
Clinical negligence: defendant - ranked: tier 1

Brachers

With 'excellent defendant firm' Brachers, clients 'always know that the case will be well prepared and thought through'. The team is renowned for its case work with the Medical and Dental Defence Unions, Specsavers Optical Group, Medway NHS Foundation Trust and Newline Insurance Company, especially on brain injury, cerebral palsy, psychiatric, dental, oncology and ophthalmic claims. Clients recommend 'fantastic and hugely experienced' practice lead Scott Alexander, as well as 'efficient and tireless' associate Harriet Humphrey, the 'hardworking' Frances Cutler and the 'competent' Dana Ellis. Another key team member is experienced healthcare law partner and mediator John Sheath.

Leading individuals

John Sheath - Brachers

Scott Alexander - Brachers

Next generation lawyers

Dana Ellis - Brachers

Harriet Humphrey - Brachers

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South East: Private client

Agriculture and estates
Agriculture and estates - ranked: tier 2

Brachers

Brachers' 'knowledge of agricultural matters is very good - the team always responds quickly with appropriate technical and pragmatic advice'. The firm has longstanding relationships with clients including Hadlow College, East Malling Trust, Kent County Agricultural Society and landowning families, for which it handles overage, conditional contracts and promotion agreements, among other matters. headed by the 'very knowledgeable' Sarah Webster, the practice was strengthened by the recruitment of Deborah Cain from Griffith Smith LLP, Mary Rimmer from Stephens & Son incorporating Parry's & Baillie, and Emma Harris from asb law LLP. Christopher Eriksson-Lee is also recommended.

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Contentious trusts and probate
Contentious trusts and probate - ranked: tier 2

Brachers

Brachers' reputation in this area was further strengthened by the recruitment of the 'redoubtable' Deborah Cain, who is 'a very experienced and thorough contentious trusts and probate lawyer'. working closely with the firm's private client department, the practice acts for clients in the full range of contentious trust matters, including disputes concerning the validity of wills, Inheritance Act claims, disputes between executors, trustees and beneficiaries, and proprietary estoppel claims.

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Family: Kent, Surrey, Sussex
Family: Kent, Surrey, Sussex - ranked: tier 2

Brachers

Brachers¬†fields¬†'a good strong team‚Äô from its Maidstone base. Its recent work includes substantial nuptial agreements, a complex relocation case, domestic abuse and matrimonial cases with complicating international aspects including the removal of children from the jurisdiction. Financial cases often involve businesses and trust structures, where it is able to draw on the firm's tax, commercial and property experts. ‚ÄėFantastic lawyers‚Äô Mei-Ling Nab¬†and Mark Leeson¬†jointly head the team and associate Sophie Read¬†undertakes both Children Act and financial proceedings.

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Personal tax, trusts and probate: Kent, Surrey, Sussex
Personal tax, trusts and probate: Kent, Surrey, Sussex - ranked: tier 2

Brachers

The team at Brachers is 'knowledgeable and professional' and provides 'pragmatic' advice. The group acts for an impressive range of clients including high-net-worth individuals and families, as well as business-, landed- and agricultural estates owners. It handles the gamut of advisory and contentious matters pertaining to tax and succession planning and the administration of estates and family trusts. Christopher Eriksson-Lee, who heads the department, is 'very client focused and easy to work with and is alive to the issues that matter most'. Other key names include consultant Simon Palmer, senior associates Justine Sloover and Mary Rimmer and Deborah Cain, who joined in April 2017 from Griffith Smith LLP and heads the firm’s contentious trust and probate department. Solicitor Amy Lane is 'personable, empathetic, professional and thoroughly effective'.

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South East: Public sector

Education
Education - ranked: tier 3

Brachers

Brachers fields a cross-disciplinary team that acts for a range of academy schools and further education colleges, as well as a number of free schools, foundation schools, SEN schools and private colleges. The firm is acting for Hadlow Group on the restructuring of its asset portfolio, which involves the disposal of land to government agencies and housebuilders. Other recent highlights include advising Canterbury College on its merger with East Kent College, which involved the transfer of the client's estate to East Kent College and the dissolution of Canterbury College. Commercial property specialist Bill Butler heads the practice, which includes Ash Jilani, who is leading on the Hadlow Group matter, and employment specialists Joanna Worby and Catherine Daw.

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Health
Health - ranked: tier 1

Brachers

Brachers fields a team with extensive experience in healthcare matters, as illustrated by its presence on the NHS Commercial Alliance framework panel and its work for a number of NHS trusts and medical defence organisations. The practice also acts for GP federations, corporations and individual practices, for which it handles merger and succession issues. Recent work includes acting for Medway NHS Foundation Trust in an inquest concerning the death of a patient from suspected pre-eclampsia, and advising Tonbridge Medical Practice on the development of a new surgery. John Sheath leads the healthcare team and has more than 30 years' experience handling clinical negligence inquests, health and safety issues, and Court of Protection declaration work, among other areas of expertise. Employment specialist  Catherine Daw is also recommended.

Leading individuals

John Sheath - Brachers

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South East: Real estate

Commercial property: Kent, Surrey, Sussex
Commercial property: Kent, Surrey, Sussex - ranked: tier 1

Brachers

Brachers¬†fields 'a¬†first-class team' and department head Sarah Gaines¬†is noted for her handling of contentious issues and her¬†‚Äėcan-do attitude'.¬†William Butler, who has a focus on the health and education sectors,¬†applies 'methodical patience to complex land issues'. The team has comprehensive expertise in all aspects of real estate including¬†planning, environment, construction, property finance and litigation. A multi-disciplinary team acted for¬†Sea Street Development on a complex ¬£20m project involving the¬†purchase of disused land from Canterbury City Council for a mixed-use development, which also involved planning permissions and which faced considerable resistance from local residents.¬†Ash Jilani,¬†Sarah Webster¬†and Emma Andersen¬†are other noted practitioners.

Leading individuals

Sarah Gaines - Brachers

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Construction
Construction - ranked: tier 4

Brachers

Brachers has a track record handling contentious and non-contentious construction matters for developers and contractors. Michael Janney left the firm in 2017.

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Environment
Environment - ranked: tier 2

Brachers

Brachers is a regular fixture in environmental prosecutions and enforcement, as well as statutory nuisance cases, including claims under s.82 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. On the non-contentious front, the practice acts for developers and planning authorities in environmental impact assessments, and for landowners and purchasers on contaminated land issues. Other areas of expertise include advising on environmental issues related to corporate transactions, including warranties and indemnities related to potential environmental liabilities. Lee May heads the practice.

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Property litigation
Property litigation - ranked: tier 2

Brachers

Brachers fields a 'very professional' property litigation team that is appreciated by clients for its 'broad industry knowledge and experience'. The practice continues to act for NHS trusts, public bodies and local councils, as well as commercial clients on a range of property-related matters, including a recent workload of development disputes. Michael Oatham heads the team, which includes Allis Beasley, who is 'very good at quickly identifying the crux of an issue and providing sound tactical advice with regard to the relevant risks and their weightings'. James Millis handles a range of property disputes, and is continuing to act for a number of tenants of the New Covent Garden Flower Market in court proceedings related to their move to an interim site during a multimillion-pound redevelopment of the site.

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