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Two new Will, Trust and Estate Dispute partners join the Leeds and London teams and George Merrylees promoted to partner

Irwin Mitchell Private Wealth’s expertise continues to expand as two new partners join the Will, Trust and Estate Disputes teams in London and Leeds this month.

Claire-Marie Cornford joins the firm’s London office from Mishcon de Reya, where she gained a reputation as an expert in high-value trust and estate disputes, often involving an international element. Irwin Mitchell’s Private Wealth team in London now includes all four strands of Private Wealth, Tax, Trust & Estates, Family Law, Will Trust & Estate Disputes and Residential Property.

In Leeds, James Laycock joins Irwin Mitchell Private Wealth from Gordon’s. James’ expertise lies in Will validity claims, multi-million pound estate disputes, mismanagement allegations against trustees and executors, and financial provision matters for a wide range of clients including families, trustees and private individuals. James’ substantial experience in commercial litigation also means he is adept at advising on disputes involving family businesses.

Independent legal directory, The Legal 500, describes Claire-Marie as ‘very talented’ in its 2017 guide while James is also a recommended lawyer in the latest edition and in 2016 was described as ‘a very able litigator and incisive tactician’.

Paula Myers, National Head of the Will, Trust & Estate Disputes at Irwin Mitchell Private Wealth, said: “We are one of the largest specialist will dispute teams in the UK and the addition of Claire-Marie in London and James in Leeds helps further our reputation as a market-leading practice.

“Claire-Marie and James both have a background in commercial litigation as well as being highly regarded experts in all manner of trust and estate disputes, which means we can utilise their experience in this area to better advise our clients who have business assets. As well as this both are already well-regarded in the legal industry, so we’re very pleased two partners of this calibre have chosen to join Irwin Mitchell Private Wealth.”

We’re also delighted to announce that George Merrylees has been promoted to Partner in the London and International Tax, Trusts and Estates team, effective from 1 November.t. George is an expert across a full range of UK tax advice for international clients, including structuring UK business and property assets for clients abroad. George acts for business owners, high-net-worth individuals and families primarily based in Europe and Africa. He works very closely with French business groups and organisations.

Nick said: “Irwin Mitchell Private Wealth is rapidly moving up the independent legal rankings across the country. We are carving out a reputation for high-quality advice that clients can understand and which really helps them achieve their goals. I’m looking forward to leading the Tax, Trust & Estates team as we seek to help many more private clients in the coming years.

“George is an example of someone who has gone from strength-to-strength at Irwin Mitchell Private Wealth. His work advising clients on international tax, trusts and estates, particularly for matters involving French-speaking countries, has made him a regular fixture of the Anglo-French legal world. As Brexit affects our lives more and more over the next few years more people will need international expertise as they review their lives and finances.”

Published: 22 November 2017


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November 2017


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Nick Rucker