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I head up the Contentious Probate team nationally and handle disputes involving trustees, beneficiaries and executors. I deal with all types of challenges to Wills, which can involve issues relating to mental capacity, undue influence and Will irregularities. I also handle claims for financial provision for spouses, cohabitees, children and maintained parties. I have particular experience handling farming dispute claims involving the doctrine of proprietary estoppel. I also sit on the Private Wealth Executive Board
I'm very passionate about helping people through a dispute. This can be a very trying and emotional time for people who have often lost someone close to them and are then immediately faced with a dispute with a family member or someone close to them. I'm a trained mediator and so keen to find the right resolution for clients engaged in disputes but will adopt a strong line when it is necessary and use the court process to achieve the right result. My aim is to take away stress from clients and to shoulder that burden for them as we find a resolution and solution to their problem.
I've been named numerous times in leading legal guides and was recommended on the City Wealth Leaders List 2017. I've also been shortlisted for prestigious awards such as Partner of the Year in the Yorkshire Lawyers Awards and Woman of the Year at the Magic Circle Awards. My team was named Private Client Team of the Year for 2018/19 in the Legal Business Awards.
Paula Myers heads Irwin Mitchell's contentious trust team and is described as "a very effective litigator and will always be very thorough and meticulous in her handling of cases." She often deals with will challenges, undue influence and financial provision claims on behalf of beneficiaries. A wealth expert explains: "She is a unique blend of ferocious litigation prowess and compassionate client care. In this field, that mix is important." - Chambers & Partners, 2018
"Brilliant" and a "good tactical lawyer" - Chambers & Partners 2017
"Remarkable levels of client loyalty and satisfaction; she is not just tactically astute, with an almost unerring instinct for the opposition’s weakness, but is a rock of confidence to her clients." - Legal 500, 2017
According to impressed sources she "has a limitless ability to carry big cases". - Chambers & Partners 2016
"She is a formidable solicitor. She is very good at explaining difficult concepts to lay clients" - Chambers & Partners 2015
"She is absolutely top class – she tackles probate and estates claims with charm and incredible ability." - Legal 500 2014
Paula was also recommended on the national elite lawyers list and is described as ‘‘a serious player... who is confident and knowledgeable, and gets results". - Legal 500 2014
I like the intellectual challenge of a complicated legal problem and helping clients to achieve a result.
Client satisfaction and developing our junior lawyers.
Our national platform, our fantastic people and the achievements and results that we deliver for our clients.
I like to spend time with friends and family and relax.
"As a trustee of a Will, representing minor beneficiaries, I engaged Paula, as a result of a recommendation, to act on my behalf in a dispute with 2 other trustees.
'Paula was able to quickly recommend a strategy to address the dispute. This gave me confidence to continue to defend the interests of the minors and it was obvious that she was an expert in this area, but also she made the risks clear and throughout the case told me what I needed to hear, not necessarily what I wanted to hear. I was extremely happy with the ultimate settlement that was achieved by the efforts of Paula and her team. It was not inexpensive but in life you get what you pay for. Paula's expertise and approach is well worth paying for and I would not hesitate to recommend her services." – Graeme Hall
“The Irwin Mitchell Charities Foundation has been an incredible success since its launch and its 20th anniversary is undoubtedly something to celebrate. We are immensely proud to have been able to support a host of fantastic causes over the years and are committed to helping many more going forward.
“The fundraising drive across October was fantastic fun and we are delighted to be able to pass on a donation to support the incredible and vital work of Rape Crisis.”
“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.
“These appointments confirm our commitment to providing the vest best service to our clients both in the North and South throughout the life-cycle of a trust or estate dispute. I’m confident that they will soon make their mark and produce some great results for our clients.”
“While the exhumation of a body to establish a claim is unusual, long legal battles are not unheard of. Whilst most cases are resolved quickly and at reasonable cost, it is impossible to predict the behaviour of an opponent and therefore some litigants find themselves engaged in a dispute for the long-haul. If the case is contentious enough or if it involves a unique point of law, it can pass through several courts and take years to pass down a final judgment.
“The difficulty for Ms Abel is that even if she is proven to be related to Dali, she is likely to have to embark on a further dispute with the Foundation and the Spanish state, to which he left his works.”
“Stephen’s varied litigation background is a fantastic addition to the Chichester team, which handles contentious trust and probate work from clients across the South of England.
“It’s great to see that we’re attracting both new talent and experienced lawyers to our nationally recognised team. Our recent appointments serve to highlight the fact that Irwin Mitchell Private Wealth is a great place to work and that our team is well respected across the country.”
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