We are delighted that seven of our departments have been ranked in The Legal 500 UK 2016 guide:
- Agriculture and Estates – Tier 2
- Art and Cultural Property – Tier 3
- Charities and Not-for-Profit – Tier 3
- Contentious Trusts and Probate – Tier 3
- Family – Tier 2
- Family: Mediation – Tier 2
- Personal Tax, Trusts and Probate – Tier 2
The Agriculture and Estates department is ranked in Tier 2. The 16-partner team led by Patricia Sykes includes the ‘excellent’ Jonathan Godwin-Austen, who is rated for his knowledge and communication; and the ‘outstanding’ Alexandra Sarkis and Julia Richards.
The Art and Cultural Property department has moved up two tiers, to Tier 3. The team is recognised as ‘one of the few firms with a specialist team in this field’, and advises on art and antiquities across its private client and litigation departments. Hetty Gleave is ‘very well known in the area; practical, with a good range of knowledge and industry experience’. Also recommended is Gregor Kleinknecht, who has ‘a great eye for detail and is very hardworking’, and the ‘outstanding’ Alexandra Sarkis.
Charity stays strong in Tier 3 and has a longstanding track record in the charities sector with an impressive stable of clients including The Independent Press Regulation Trust, the British Sporting Arts Trust and the Architects Benevolent Society. Key figures include senior partner Paul Almy, whose ‘experience is considerable’, and Dominik Opalinski, who is highlighted for his knowledge of the investment powers and reporting obligations of charities.
Contentious trust and probate goes up one tier to Tier 3. Richard Kershaw is noted for his ‘measured, sensible and confident approach to litigation, which ensures that his clients’ best interests are promoted at all times’. Its specialist tax and family lawyers handle a range of contentious trusts and probate matters, enabling it to deliver ‘a comprehensive service’. Associate David Draisey is also recommended.
The Family department has progressed to Tier 2, and described as ‘an outstanding team that places strategic advice, client care and thorough preparation at the top of its list of priorities’. Henry Hood has ‘the Midas touch on high-value cases’ and Richard Kershaw’s ‘tactical and negotiation skills are second to none’. Hazel Wright ‘really knows what she is talking about’. The ‘extremely able’ Jo Carr-West was promoted to partner.
The mediation team remain steady at Tier 2. Key figures include the ‘very calm, reassuring and level-headed’ Hazel Wright and ‘very bright and thoughtful’ Henry Hood. They are both ranked as leading individuals.
The Personal Tax, Trusts and Probate department stays in Tier 2, praised for an ‘all-round technical skills and commercial approach mak[ing] it a very strong offering’. Joe Richardson is ‘hugely experienced, technically brilliant and very wise’, and Jonathan Godwin-Austen has ‘extensive knowledge of trusts and probate’. Also recommended are the ‘technically very able’ Alexandra Sarkis and Julia Richards, and ‘very astute’ Mary Elliott. Jonathan Godwin-Austen and Alexandra Sarkis are listed as leading individuals.
This has been a very successful year with three departments going up a tier and 15 recommended solicitors.
Read Hunters’ full Legal 500 2016 ranking here.