Firm Profile > Simcocks > Douglas, Isle Of Man
Isle Of Man
Simcocks > The Legal 500 Rankings
The establishment of private family trust and foundation structures for high-net-worth individuals is a particular strong point for the practice at Simcocks which is headed by Phil Games. Associate Caroline Jennings’ family practice also advises on private client matters, particularly will and estate management. The firm advises beneficiaries and trustees on issues regarding trust administration, variation of trusts and applications to remove trustees from office. Trust disputes are another area of expertise, and the team is often instructed by UK law firms, banks and insurance companies on probate issues concerning assets held within Manx trusts. Christopher Arrowsmith, who was active in trust litigation, has been appointed as Deputy High Bailiff.
Banking and finance Tier 2
At Simcocks, Alex Spencer has a track record of handling finance work, particularly covering cross-border security issues. The firm acts for well-known banks, as well as handling borrower-side fund finance work.
Other key lawyers:
‘The team has vast experience, which is immediately apparent in its ability to deal with complex transactions in an efficient and practical manner.’
‘The firm draws on technical knowledge to provide creative solutions.’
Commercial property Tier 2
Commercial property acquisitions are a strong point for the practice at Simcocks. Team head Irini Newby assists a modest portfolio of property development companies with reviewing existing tenancy agreements on newly-acquired property, as well as advising on leasing structures and licensing issues. The practice also acts as counsel to a number of retail property landlords in respect to lease extensions, break clauses and tenancy dilapidation issues.
Employment Tier 2
Simcocks' employment practice handles a number of constructive dismissal claims, as well as advising on the drafting of contracts, remuneration and severance packages. Corporate and commercial law practitioner Irini Newby regularly advises on the employment elements of corporate transactions. Clients range from local construction, health care and property businesses to international financial institutions. Associate Winston Taylor is able to provide advice on immigration law and work permits.
Corporate and commercial Tier 3
Simcocks has varied expertise in the corporate space in the Isle of Man, ranging from competition law in heavily regulated industries to real estate deals concerning London properties. Irini Newby handles, among other matters, M&A deals in the corporate service provider industry.
Dispute resolution Tier 3
At Simcocks, associate Caroline Jennings advises a breadth of clients on family law issues, including divorce and separation agreements and child maintenance issues while associate Winston Taylor is the noted name for immigration issues. Fellow associate Kevin O’Loughlin also works with the firm's private client offering on contentious trust issues. Proceeds of crime is another area of expertise. Christopher Arrowsmith left the firm to become Deputy High Bailiff in September 2019.
Insurance and pensions Tier 3
The team at Simcocks advises on insurance regulatory and issues, captive insurance company formations and other transactions in the industry, with David Spencer being a notable name in the sector. On the pensions front (which is led by Phil Games), the practice assists corporate clients, pension fund trustees and fund members on scheme mergers and restructurings, pension scheme buy-outs, tax compliance and contentious matters.
Simcocks > Firm Profile
Simcocks is one of the longest established law firms in the Isle of Man, having formed an enviable reputation due to its expertise and experience. Founded in 1949 by Alfred Howard Simcocks, the law firm in the heart of the British Isles has grown from strength to strength.
The firm: With a reputation for delivering exceptional results for clients, the firm’s team of dynamic advocates adds real value to each and every case. Simcocks has a commitment to building and fostering strong relationships and, as well as offering a premier service, its lawyers are easy and straightforward to deal with.
The depth and range of the firm’s lawyers’ expertise and experience generates many complex referrals and it is regularly instructed by magic circle and silver circle firms. The group is strong on litigation support as well as transactional, restructuring and complex advisory work.
The firm’s results-driven service has the strength and ability to advise private individuals, Isle of Man-registered companies, multinationals, SMEs, regulators and NGOs. The team of advocates is approachable, dynamic, and highly recommended by Chambers and Partners and The Legal 500.
Types of work undertaken: Simcocks is a leading law firm with offices in the Isle of Man and London. Types of work undertaken include:
Banking and finance: Simcocks’ banking and finance team advises banks, financial institutions and corporates on all areas of finance including general bank lending, project finance, property finance, acquisition finance, asset securitisation and structured finance.
Corporate and commercial: specialists in corporate restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, the acquisition and disposal of business undertakings, the formation of new companies, general and limited partnership matters, joint ventures and shareholder agreements, shareholder and partner disputes, regulatory compliance, pensions, banking and capital markets including AIM listings and corporate legal opinions.
Dispute resolution: the department specialises in international corporate and commercial litigation and has an impressive track record of success in high-stake disputes. Simcocks’ technical knowledge generates many complex referrals, including cross-jurisdiction disputes.
Property: work is undertaken on all aspects of development, retail, contruction and planning, including advising high-net-worth individuals on all aspects of estate planning.
Private client: the private client team regularly works with law firms in the UK and overseas to provide Isle of Man advice on estate planning for clients with multinational holdings. The team has experience as trusted advisors to high-net-worth familes.
eGaming: Simcocks deal with regulators in connection with grant of licences, obtaining opinions on the legality of new schemes, and negotiating and drafting commercial partnership agreements.
Shipping: the firm has considerable expertise delivering advice on the legislation, regulatory and commercial issues connected with this sector.
Intellectual property: Simcocks advises on contentious and non-contentious issues arising in connection with computer and software licences, trade mark registrations and disputes, copyright issues and design rights and patents.
Family law: the firm is committed to the constructive resolution of family disputes, including divorce and separation and preparing prenuptial and postnuptial agreements.
|Corporate and commercial||Irini Newby|
|Corporate and commercial||Alex Spencer|
|Dispute resolution and ADR||Caroline Jennings|
|Private client||Phil Games|
|Business and finance||Irini Newby|
|Property – commercial and residential||Irini Newby|
|Property – commercial and residential||Taryn Pyle|
|Shipping and aviation||Alex Spencer|
|Shipping and aviation||David Spencer|
|Notarial services||Phil Games|
|Restructuring and insolvency||Alex Spencer|
|Collective investment schemes or mutual funds||Alex Spencer|
|Collective investment schemes or mutual funds||David Spencer|
Staff FiguresNumber of UK partners : 4 Number of other UK fee-earners : 17
Reyna Soni, PartnerSimcocks Attorney, Reyna Soni, discusses the firm’s experience and expertise in providing Isle of Man legal opinions.
What is your role at Simcocks Advocates?
I assist Simcocks with its own compliance and regulatory matters and I also assist our clients, mainly trust and corporate service providers (“TCSP’s”), with ensuring that their company has a compliant framework, with the necessary procedures and processes in place, to meet their ongoing regulatory requirements.
Part of my role is to assist clients by providing them with a review form ‘package’ which they would use day to day, where I walk them through what needs to be done, with specific regard to their own operational methodologies.
My involvement could go beyond simply looking at what a company is doing in relation to their compliance requirements to actively assisting them in doing what’s needed to get them ‘over the line’ so to speak, usually in anticipation of or in response to a regulatory assessment. This service includes assisting them in completing their internal and/or managed entity compliance reviews, where for example a licensed entity has fallen behind in maintaining their compliance procedures and processes generally. Here I could rally together a task force if needed and our level of engagement would vary depending on the client’s circumstances.
Who would benefit from the Regulatory & Compliance service?
All businesses, by and large, have some regulatory and compliance requirements. These would range from general GDPR and company reporting requirements to the more complex licensing requirements.
The more intricate matters generally come our way from the licensed and regulated entities, such as TCSP’s and banks who have to comply with the Financial Services Act/AML CFT Code and gaming entities who have to comply with the requirements of the Online Gaming Regulations Act.
How can Simcocks’ Regulatory & Compliance team support a company coming up to an assessment?
Simcocks can assist in many different ways, depending on the type of client and the circumstances that lead them to seeking advice.
When looking at the TCSP and banking clients who are regularly assessed by the IOM FSA, we can provide them with ‘General Health Checks’, where we go through their procedures
and processes to ensure that they are meeting the required regulatory standards, in advance of an assessment. We can even, depending on what’s required by the client, go a step further and create a task force to help the client bring their files and records up to date. By way of example, where a TCSP has fallen behind in conducting their mandatory file reviews and needs to urgently bring things up to date in advance of an assessment, we could go through their client entity files, do the review and give them a list of things that need to be done, to bring the records up to date.
What can the Simcocks team do to assist if there has been a breach?
Depending on the nature of the breach, we could review the matter and advise whether we consider there has been an actual breach, and liaise with the IOM FSA in this regard. Where a client elects to challenge the breach, we could assist in mediating the matter with the IOM FSA and if necessary, our litigation team can assist in bringing the client’s case forward.
Alternatively, we could work with the client and the FSA to demonstrate compliance, post breach.
What services do you provide to ensure clients’ regulatory compliance in the future?
Our general health-checks would help our client to determine which aspects of their policies and procedures need to be updated so that they continue to be compliant and we can assist in doing this for clients ourselves, where necessary.
Our review task force can be called in at any time to help a client stay on track, even if an assessment isn’t imminent and our review form package can be used by clients on an ongoing basis to ensure that they continue to do what is required.
We can assist by providing advice to Money Laundering Reporting Officers (MLROs) on whether a suspicious activity report needs to be made in specific circumstances.
Also, importantly, we can provide bespoke training to clients and their staff on the rules that currently apply to their particular office, so they have an understanding about why these tasks and checks are necessary.
Reyna is part of a team of risk advisory and compliance experts at Simcocks Advocates.
Corporate and Commercial
Simcocks’ excellent Corporate and Commercial team prides itself on its extensive expertise and its ability to provide comprehensive advice within very tight timeframes. The team is headed by Irini Newby, who is also an expert in Commercial Property and Employment law, and includes Alex Spencer, a leading individual in Banking and Finance.