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Legal 500

The commentary below appears in Legal 500 2015:

Banking litigation: Investment and Retail (London)

Tier 2

Stewarts Law LLP continued to act for more than 300 financial institutions against RBS in respect of its 2008, £12bn rights issue. Clive Zietman 'obtains first-class results' and Keith Thomas 'shows a remarkable understanding of investment banking'. Sean Upson is also recommended.

Leading Individuals: Clive Zietman and Sean Upson

Clinical negligence: claimant (London)

Top Tier

Stewarts Law LLP's 'leading' group has significant expertise in high-value catastrophic injury claims, securing substantial damages awards on behalf of its clients. Department head Muiris Lyons 'commands respect amongst all his peers', and has successfully acted opposite numerous NHS trusts. The 'unflappable' Nick Knowles and 'great tactician' Robert Dransfield are also recommended.

Leading Individuals: Muiris Lyons

Clinical negligence: claimant (Leeds)

Tier 2

Stewarts Law LLP's department specialises in catastrophic injury claims and is praised for its willingness to 'take on hard cases'. 'Very good tactician and litigator' Frank Pinch specialises in cases involving spinal cord and brain injuries in adults and children.

Commercial litigation (London)

Tier 3

Stewarts Law LLP is 'wholly comfortable taking on Magic Circle firms'. The team continues to act for 300-plus financial institutions against the RBS group in respect of its 2008 rights issue. Key names include Clive Zietman, who is 'an excellent strategist'; Sean Upson, who 'inspires confidence at every stage'; Marc Jones, who is 'smart and commercially astute'; and Fiona Gillett, who is 'a most capable practitioner'. Keith Thomas and Paul Brehony are also recommended.

Commercial litigation (Leeds)

Top Tier

Boutique litigation firm Stewarts Law LLP 'punches above its weight in the region', advising on national and international matters for blue-chip clients. Mo Bhaskaran leads the practice, which includes Jonathan Sinclair, who specialises in competition litigation. The firm has considerable strength in fraud and financial services litigation.

Leading Individuals: Jonathan Sinclair

Competition Litigation (London)

Tier 3

Claimant litigation firm Stewarts Law LLP is representing 13 claimants in interchange fees litigation against MasterCard, and a major household appliance manufacturer in the refrigeration compressors cartel litigation. Jonathan Sinclair heads the practice, which includes 'first-class litigators' Kate Pollock, Scott Campbell and Inge Forster.

Employment: Employers and Senior Executives (London)

Top Tier

The 'incredibly switched-on' Tim Spillane leads Stewarts Law LLP's 'strong, sensible and pragmatic team' and 'fights hard for his clients with real tenacity and charm'. The department is 'a leader in the executive field' and has particular expertise in the financial and professional services sectors. Richard Nicolle is 'very detailed and focuses on the real issues'.

Family (London)

Top Tier

Stewarts Law LLP's 'scarily bright' team is noted for its knack for 'unravelling complicated trust structures and assets hidden behind companies'. Stephen Foster is 'a strong leader who can manage any situation or individual and steer things to a successful outcome'. Also recommended are Debbie Chism and Richard Hogwood, who are 'very clever'; Emma Hatley, who is 'as good as you can get'; Helen Ward, who is 'extremely talented and fiercely loyal to her clients'; Sam Longworth, who stays 'very calm under pressure'; and Matthew Humphries, who is 'excellent at tracing the money'. Toby Atkinson joined the team from Charles Russell Speechlys LLP.

Leading Individuals: Stephen Foster, Helen Ward, Debbie Chism and Emma Hatley

Family (Leeds)

Top Tier

Under the leadership of Simon Preston (who 'gets excellent results'), Stewarts Law LLP provides 'excellent, pragmatic advice' to high-net-worth individuals.

Fraud: civil (London)

Tier 3

Through offices in London and Leeds, Stewarts Law LLP has 'a go-to commercial litigation practice with strength in a number of fields'. Clive Zietman's team is one of the few groups of comparable size to accept instructions against banks and financial institutions.

International Arbitration (London)

Tier 6

Stewarts Law LLP's 'dynamic team' regularly advises clients in the oil and gas, commodity trading and shipping and automotive industries in arbitrations. Philippa Charles is 'a great strategist'.

Personal injury: claimant (London)

Top Tier

Stewarts Law LLP provides 'a fantastic service on all levels' and has 'a flawless understanding of each case, particularly the client's diagnosis and personal needs'. Practice head Paul Paxton has been involved in numerous catastrophic and fatal injury cases, and spinal injury specialist Julian Chamberlayne is recommended for claims with an international element. Andrew Dinsmore is 'an excellent negotiator who always remains calm under pressure'.

Leading Individuals: Paul Paxton, Charles Edwards, John Cahill and Stuart Dench

Personal injury: claimant (Leeds)

Top Tier

Led by Daniel Herman, Stewarts Law LLP specialises in high-value catastrophic injuries including amputations, severe orthopaedic injuries and fatal accidents. The firm often acts for clients who have been injured abroad. Ben Townsend is also recommended.

Tax Litigation and Investigations (London)

Tier 3

Stewarts Law LLP stands out for its 'wealth of experience and strong team of very impressive lawyers'. Led by the 'very client-friendly, responsive and knowledgeable' David Pickstone, the practice has been representing individual contributors to tax mitigation schemes in defending them against the HMRC and in claims against the promoters of such schemes.

Travel including Aviation: Personal Injury (London)

Top Tier

'Catastrophic injury specialists' Stewarts Law LLP 'does its utmost to get the best results for its clients'. The 'hardworking and accurate' Julian Chamberlayne heads the team, which includes the 'excellent' Scott Rigby, associate Christopher Deacon, who is 'very able', and Sarah Stewart, who 'has a finely-tuned sense of what a case requires'. Key figures in the Leeds office include the 'highly regarded' Daniel Herman and Ben Townsend, who is 'first-class'. Aviation expert James Healy-Pratt 'pursues his claims with grit and realism'.

Leading Individuals: Julian Chamberlayne and James Healy-Pratt

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