John McGrath > Dechert LLP > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Dechert LLP
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John McGrath, a senior structured finance partner, primarily represents funds and other buy-side parties on a wide range of performing and non-performing financial products often involving enforcement or restructuring of derivatives, securitizations and other structured financings.


  • University of Oxford, B.A., Law, 1996
  • University of Cambridge, B.A., 1992

Lawyer Rankings

London > Finance > Derivatives and structured products

(Leading individuals)

John McGrathDechert LLP

Dechert LLP is ‘deeply knowledgeable about ISDA documentations and market practice‘, and clients remark that ‘the attention to detail is second to none, turnaround times are fantastic, and nothing was too much to ask‘. The firm acts for both the global buy-side client base and sell-side clients across an array of derivatives  and financial market regulatory issues. Its buy-side client base ranges from hedge fund start-ups to global asset managers, hedge funds, private equity funds and retail funds across the world. Gus Black leads the financial services group, in which John McGrath and Karen Stretch are the key partner for derivatives and structured products. Stretch is ‘dedicated, excellent to work with, very responsive and provides practical advice‘.

London > Finance > Securitisation

Dechert LLP has a large global securitisation practice in which the London office is a key hub. It frequently handles first-of-kind transactions involving new structures, multiple asset classes or jurisdictions, whether for issuers, or underwriters. It also has strengths in key market niches, including repo-based commercial mortgage securitisation. It is also strong in the broader CMBS market and is a key adviser to CLO managers. The London group, led by head of structured finance and real estate Aparna Sehgal, also works closely with its colleagues in the US to advise on securities regulation, and handles a strong flow of restructuring work. Key partner John McGrath frequently handles CMBS transactions and he advised a major investment bank on the development of repo-based transactions. Richard Pugh, who joined from Bank of America, has extensive experience in EMEA securitisation, CMBS and commercial real estate finance matters. The firm’s CLO practice is led by senior associate Glenn Weston, who works closely with associate Rory O’Connor.

London > Real estate > Property finance

The London team at Dechert LLP works closely with the firm’s European offices to support lenders and clients in the financial market on cross-border real estate finance transactions. Aparna Sehgal leads the European structured finance and real estate group and has expertise in complex, multi-jurisdictional transactions. She is praised as ‘a very experienced lawyer, especially on complex asset-backed financings’ and John McGrath is strong in structured finance matters. Richard Pugh joined from the Bank of America in April 2022 with strength in advising on commercial mortgage-backed securitisations, and the team has also grown at the associate level. Sarah Smith joined Baker McKenzie in February 2022.