The week on eprivateclient: JTC, Taylor Wessing, Withers and more...

News Team, 10/09/2021

A recap of the most read stories to feature on eprivateclient this week…


London multi-service law firm RIAA Barker Gillette and residential and commercial property lawyers Tibber Marks Solicitors announced that they have merged. The merged firm, to be called RIAA Barker Gillette incorporating Tibber Marks, creates a full-service law firm with 80 staff focused on high-net-worth individuals and entrepreneurial businesses.

International law firm McDermott Will & Emery established a physical presence in Singapore. The office is based in the Raffles Place area at the heart of Singapore’s business district. The office will be multi-practice with a particular focus on commercial transactions, energy and infrastructure, M&A, capital markets, technology, government investigations/arbitration and private wealth/tax.


UK accountancy firm – Tax Advisory Partnership (TAP) – promoted two tax directors to partner. The two new partners – who took on their new roles on 1 September - are former eprivateclient Top 35 Under 35 Sophia Passingham and corporate tax specialist Helen Mallalieu. Ms Passingham – who was named as a Top 35 Under 35 in 2012, 2013 and 2014 – has worked at TAP since 2018, having previously worked at Rawlinson & Hunter, KPMG and EY.

A Durham-based property developer agreed to hand over assets worth £850,000 to settle a civil recovery and tax claim brought by the UK’s National Crime Agency (NCA) which was based on his alleged involvement in drug trafficking, money laundering and tax evasion. The order relates to four residential rental properties, a plot of land and the remaining proceeds of a house sale held in a bank account in Ronald Morton's name. The property portfolio had been amassed over almost two decades and was predominantly bought with cash payments.


The private client sector reacted to the UK Government’s plans to fund its social care reforms through hikes in National Insurance and dividend tax, a move described as a 'nasty attack' on investors and the young.

Newly launched independent trust company Entrust expanded its team with a new hire. Ross McCann joined the firm as a trust administrator, having previously worked at SG Kleinwort Hambros. Entrust launched in Jersey in April this year and is led by managing director Emma Roberts, with Laura Kyle and Scott Cairney joining as directors.


UK-based law firm EMW launched a private client team – EMW Wealth – to serve its growing high net worth client base. Headed by principal Stephen Smith, the EMW Wealth team comprises three principals and seven other lawyers, with the team having recently expanded its offering to private clients. The launch of EMW Wealth adds to the firm’s existing corporate transactions, banking & finance, commercial services and commercial property teams.

Trust services provider JTC Group launched fiduciary services for the US domestic market with a double hire of senior trust professionals on the East Coast. Tim Carroll joined as head of trust and fiduciary – private client services (PCS), Americas, whilst Gregg Homan was appointed as head of domestic business development – PCS, Americas.

With the ESG investment revolution gathering pace and with trustees increasingly being asked by settlors and beneficiaries to take into account factors such as climate change or to exclude certain industries when investing trust assets, Charles Russell Speechly’s senior partner Bart Peerless, alongside senior associate Matthew Radcliffe, examined the challenges this presents for trustees of private family trusts.


International law firm Taylor Wessing appointed its UK head of private wealth - partner Ronald Graham - as managing partner of its Dubai office. A private wealth specialist, Mr Graham has also led the firm's Middle East group. The appointment follows the retirement and completion of Osama Hassan's term as managing partner. Mr Hassan will continue to work with the firm as a consultant.

Rival law firm Withers established a new presence in Texas as the firm looks to grow the its global private client and tax offerings. The practice will be led by Houston-based partner Kevin T. Keen, who joined the firm earlier this year and is qualified in and maintains an active practice throughout both Texas and Florida.

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