Jeremy Wessels

+441481739303

Jeremy Wessels

Head of Litigation  |  Mourant Ozannes
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Guernsey

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Dispute resolution

Q&A

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

Victory in the Tchenguiz Litigation. This has been a hard fought battle over nearly 10 years and has seen the end of claims against my client of over £500m as well as a groundbreaking judgment as to the proper interpretation of Article 32 of the Trust Jersey Law that has implications in many offshore jurisdictions.

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

Keep on good terms with your opponents in litigation, trust your instincts and have an interest outside the law.

What is your favourite quote?

"He who fights with monsters should be careful lest he thereby become a monster," Friedrich Nietzsche.


Ian Swan

+441481746176

Ian Swan

Partner and Head of Dispute Resolution  |  Babbe
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Guernsey
England and Wales

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Administration of estates and trusts
Dispute resolution
Asset protection

Q&A

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

Being involved in the biggest cases in the jurisdiction and fighting them to trial and on appeal, including the Tchenguiz trusts litigation and the Carlyle fund litigation.

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

Client service always comes first.

What is your favourite quote?

“Litigators are paid to persuade, not to argue.”


Alison Ozanne

+44 (0)1481 748905

Alison Ozanne

Patner, Head of Dispute Resolution, Guernsey  |  Walkers Global
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Guernsey
England and Wales (non-practising)

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Dispute Resolution
Personal and estate planning
Asset protection

Q&A

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

The Guernsey office's continued integration into the Walkers Global network has been transformational and is my highlight over the last 12 months. More than ever we deliver a truly global offering to existing and new clients. This includes the provision of cross-jurisdictional legal advice in the Channel Islands, Cayman, BVI, Bermuda and Ireland. We can in turn also offer Guernsey law to our international client base. The ability to service clients in this way means that Walkers (Guernsey) LLP has a significantly increased prominence in Guernsey and brings us very much in line with our international competitors on the Island.

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

Work hard and stay true to your principles.

What is your favourite quote?

“Coming together is a beginning, keeping together is progress and working together is success,” Henry Ford.


Christian Hay

+44 (0)1481 734290

Christian Hay

Partner, Head Of Dispute Resolution - Guernsey  |  Collas Crill
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Guernsey
England and Wales

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Dispute resolution: Broad experience of financial services related litigation and particular expertise in contentious trust and probate related matters.

Q&A

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

As a firm we have been involved in a number of high profile offshore cases to come before the courts in Guernsey Jersey BVI and Cayman including Carlyle; Tchenguiz; Crociani; Ocean Rig; Platinum Partners; Abraaj Holdings.

Two particular cases we have been working on include:
· Advising trustees of £80m Guernsey trust on dividing trusts between warring family branches, involving tax planning in UK Australia, Cayman, Canada and USA. Complicated negotiations, a successful Public Trustee –v- Cooper blessing in October 2018 then a massive restructuring to give effect to the deal including the preparation and review of numerous bespoke declarations of trust
· Acting for the illegitimate minor of an international sports personality in a highly contentious and private application to vary a Guernsey trust to enforce an undertaking given to UK family court, a first time application of Mubarak –v- Mubarak principles (extending Saunders –v- Vautier) in Guernsey to infer consent to a variation on behalf of minor beneficiary

Winning a STEP Worldwide Excellence Award was a highlight too!

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

You are never too young to start networking. Collas Crill has been pleased to support the CONTRA network for up and coming contentious trusts lawyers as it provides an ideal and safe learning environment for junior lawyers to meet their peers and we run a number of our own similar initiatives locally and in London to bring rising stars and new lawyers together. The Private Client World is all about relationships.

What is your favourite quote?

"Litigation is the pursuit of practical ends, not a game of chess"
Felix Frankfurter


Matthew Guthrie

+44 (0)1481 731424

Matthew Guthrie

Partner  |  Mourant Ozannes
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Guernsey
England and Wales

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Personal and estate planning
Administration of estates and trusts
Asset holding structures

Q&A

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

Advising an ultra high net worth family on the establishment of a series of bespoke private trust company structures, to provide for the on-going ownership of a very substantial family business which was built up by the patriarch.

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

It is very easy to get lost in the details when advising clients on international tax and succession planning. The rules are increasingly complex and the addition of multiple cross-border elements makes it more difficult still.

What is your favourite quote?

“Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference,” Winston Churchill.


Gavin Ferguson

+44 (0)1481 752307

Gavin Ferguson

Partner  |  Ogier
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

England and Wales
Guernsey (Advocate)
British Virgin Islands

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Asset holding structures
Asset protection
Family office

Q&A

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

Being involved in Guernsey's first successful Hastings-Bass application was a major highlight in terms of instructions and work, but the real highlight has been building the Private Client and Trusts team and client base at Ogier in Guernsey. Building Guernsey's leading non-contentious trusts team from scratch, and under the Ogier culture of "doing things differently", has been a genuine career highlight.

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

There are probably two pieces of advice that I see as critical. Firstly, that client relationships are paramount; and secondly, that innovation and technology are key, in terms of continuing to improve client service.

What is your favourite quote?

"The more you know, the more you know that you don't know," Aristotle.


Chris Edwards

+44 (0)1481 739322

Chris Edwards

Partner  |  Mourant Ozannes
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

England and Wales
Guernsey
Western Australia

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Dispute resolution
Administration of estates and trusts
Other – dealing with requests for information and the impact of money laundering and regulatory issues

Q&A

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

Acting for the branch of a family and advising them on the negotiation sale of a significant business, the decanting of the proceeds of that into a complex trust structure and the partition of a portion of that structure for the benefit of that particular branch. That required sensitive and often time pressured negotiations with other branch members, the trustee and outside parties and the hearing of several court applications, all of which were resolved successfully and achieved a pleasing harmonious confidential and constructive outcome for all involved.

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

Whilst it is important to understand the legal framework within which we give advice to our clients, ultimately we are dealing with individuals and it is equally, if not more important, to understand their circumstances, needs and expectations as well as the legal options which may be available to them.

What is your favourite quote?

“Do. Or do not. There is no try,” Yoda, Star Wars.


Simon Davies

+44 (0)1481 737175

Simon Davies

Partner  |  Ogier
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Guernsey
England and Wales (non-practising)

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Dispute resolution, especially trusts and estates (including Public Trustee v Cooper and Beddoes types of applications of all kinds, breach of trust claims, investment disputes, Hastings Bass and mistake claims, disclosure applications (including by beneficiaries against trustees) and all regulatory matters/investigations)
Commercial and fund litigation (including directors’ duties and shareholder disputes)
Contentious insolvency work of all kinds

Q&A

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

My career highlight in 2017-2018 was successfully defending The Carlyle Group and Carlyle Investment Management (“Carlyle Entities“) against more than 187-claims that they were in breach of duties owed to an insolvent fund called Carlyle Capital Corporation (“CCC”). CCC and its liquidators sought “not less than US$1 billion” against the executive and independent directors as well as the Carlyle Entities who were the promoter and investment manager of CCC. The claims alleged numerous breaches of directors’ fiduciary duties and duties of skill and care – including against the Carlyle Entities who were alleged to have become de facto or shadow directors of CCC. There were also claims for breach of the investment management agreement, wrongful trading and unjust enrichment. All of the claims were rejected against all of the Defendants after a 6-month trial in a 525-page judgment. In part the decision is appealed and the appeal will be considered in October 2018 by the Court of Appeal of Guernsey.

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

Keep things clear and simple. Treat everyone you come across with courtesy and respect. Listen and learn. Later teach, nurture, listen and learn.

What is your favourite quote?

“Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler.” This is often wrongly attributed to Albert Einstein but is a misquotation. For lawyers I think it means that we should communicate everything that a client or judge needs to know to make a decision in as clear and simple way as possible.

What Einstein actually said is reported as: “It can scarcely be denied that the supreme goal of all theory is to make the irreducible basic elements as simple and as few as possible without having to surrender the adequate representation of a single datum of experience.” I can see that the simplified misquote is more user-friendly!


Alasdair Davidson

+44 (0)1481 812819

Alasdair Davidson

Partner, Head of Litigation and IPC (Guernsey)  |  Bedell Cristin
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Bailiwick of Guernsey
England and Wales
Turks and Caicos Islands
British Virgin Islands

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Administration of estates and trusts
Asset holding structures
Dispute resolution

Q&A

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

Securing the first successful relief in Guernsey law under the refined/modified “rule in Hastings-Bass”. This application took many months to prepare, and it involved careful consideration of tax issues arising out of a transfer to a trust executed by a settlor, whilst literally being wheeled into the operating theatre for major surgery. I made submissions predicated on unique aspects of Guernsey’s Trust Law, which have since been referred to by others before the Court of Appeal in another matter. Securing this result has meant a personal tax liability of several millions being lifted from the shoulders of my client.

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

Always keep a commercial weather eye out for what is going on worldwide rather than taking a blinkered approach to what’s just happening at home (and always buy your round!)

What is your favourite quote?

“There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch,” Robert Heinlein.


Russell Clark

+44 (0)1481 732049

Russell Clark

Head of Trusts and Private Client Guernsey  |  Carey Olsen
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Guernsey
England and Wales

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Personal and estate planning
Administration of estates and trusts
Asset holding structures

Q&A

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

We have seen a number of complex trust restructurings caused by trustees trying to segregate trust assets as between beneficiaries who have different views as to how the trust should be invested. The Middle East countries, particularly the GCC, remain key markets for new business coming into Guernsey. These clients are wanting to establish trusts for the traditional reasons; asset protection and estate planning.We are also seeing the establishment of new charities and new philanthropic entities.

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

It is vital to develop strong, long term relationships with clients and prospective clients to become a "trusted adviser". Make an effort to understand your clients’ business and objectives and become an extension of their team.

What is your favourite quote?

"I told the Inland Revenue I didn't owe them a penny because I lived near the seaside," Ken Dodd.