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Bhavesh Patel

Partner  |  Travers Thorp Alberga

Cayman Islands
British Virgin Islands
England and Wales


Dispute resolution (including contentious trusts and insolvency)
Asset protection and holding structures

Enhanced Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

Dealing with the administration of the estate of a wealthy middle eastern UHNW and the interplay between Sharia Law and Cayman Law and how the administration of a Cayman estate can conflict with the process under Sharia Law.

How did you get into private client?

The offshore world, really. I was doing some private client litigation at HSF with Robert Hunter and then moved across to Forbes Hare, who we had instructed on a BVI trusts matter, and that foray into BVI law meant that more and more of my work was private client or for HNWs. The nature of the offshore world is such that at its core, you are doing work for private clients even when you are dealing with corporate entities because they are owned by HNW individuals or families. The more traditional “private client” work has increased during my time with TTA in Cayman because of the nature of our practice and history of the firm.

What advice would you give rising stars/new lawyers in the private client world?

Listen, learn, be inquisitive and never forget that relationships are the most important part of any business - both internal and external.

What is your favourite quote?

“Worrying is like a rocking chair – it gives you something to do but doesn’t get you anywhere.”

Do you have any outside interests or hobbies?

Golfing, cricket and cooking.

When the restaurants reopen, where would you like to go?

We are in a bit of a bubble in Cayman and most restaurants are up and running as normal, but once travel resumes then I am looking forward to getting off island and getting some good Chinese food as that’s the one cuisine we really miss here!

What is the main area of growth you predict for the next 12 months?

Contentious Trusts have seen an increase generally over the past year and we predict that will continue – not necessarily with Court applications/ litigation but certainly with enquiries being made of trustees and/ or advisors. We’re expecting an increase in contentious work generally as the world economies recover from COVID-19.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

1. Move to Cayman earlier!
2. Invest in assets as soon as you can
3. Listen to your parents more

What are three top tips for dealing with your clients remotely?

1. Do not presume that remote working means that people are more available and/or willing to do calls outside of normal working hours.
2. Ask if a video or voice call is preferred.
3. Don’t just dive straight into the work conversation – the usual etiquette of polite conversation should still exist on a virtual meeting!