Dawn Goodman

+44 (0)20 7597 6014

Dawn Goodman

Partner  |  Withersworldwide
JURISDICTION

England and Wales
British Virgin Islands

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Dispute resolution
Asset holding structures
Family office

Enhanced Q&A

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

Acting as a significant fiduciary in a structure similar to a PTC for a UHNW family. There is nothing like the sharp end of being a fiduciary for having a better understanding of the nuanced decisions which trustees and protectors have to make!
I have also become a CEDR accredited mediator and hope to use the skills I have learned (which are very different from being a trust litigator) to help bring about consensual resolutions, particularly between trustees/ family offices and beneficiaries and as between family members. Finally I've also been admitted in Eire.

How did you get into private client?

I started life as a divorce and commercial litigator in Surrey. When I decided to move from there, Withers was advertising for a private client litigator (in the Dark Ages!) I mentioned I had worked on a case regarding a holograph will and taken a tax case up to the House of Lords – this seemed to have impressed them and I got the job! Trust and estates law was not a practice area at the time. A lot of the work was done by clerks in the family law team. I had a blank canvas and had to start from scratch. It took a while to develop and at the beginning it was mostly in Cayman.

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

Take the opportunity to act for those in as many different capacities and coming from as many jurisdictions as you can. Acting for trustees, protectors, settlors, beneficiaries and heirs gives an insight into their perspective.

What is your favourite quote?

“Always forgive your enemies – nothing annoys them so much." Oscar Wilde.

Do you have any outside interests or hobbies?

I don’t have much time but the top one is my family! I also have a very expensive hobby – I love buying old and decrepit buildings and doing them up. We recently renovated a 13th century house in France. I also love music, film, theatre and literature.

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

Anglo, in Smithfields. It’s a small restaurant and the food is glorious.

Where have you seen growth in your practice over the last year?

Political instability in the West over the past year spurred creating trusts/ restructuring for those who were concerned as to erosion of the rule of law. Complex restructuring to address a wide range of political risk was undertaken for those ( including from the US) who were unable to move themselves but were anxious to find a safe haven- usually onshore- for their assets. This involved taking advantage of investment treaties, carrying out risk analysis at all levels and adapting mechanisms usually used for Latin American or Russia and CIS clients.

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

Undoubtedly political instability, the desire to find as safe an environment as possible with good healthcare, increased taxes in the wake of the pandemic and disaster planning against the possibility of the unthinkable happening in terms of succession will continue the surge in structuring and restructuring. On the other hand inadequate planning or the failure - because of a sudden death - of a succession plan widely supported by a family is likely to give rise to unhappiness and contention. I anticipate that this will not only produce will/ heirship disputes but also trust disputes as everyone tries to come to terms with an unexpected outcome.

Can you identify any new areas you have developed within your practice to further benefit your clients?

With the strains of the pandemic on the justice system alternative forms of dispute resolution are likely to become more crucial in finding a quicker, less expensive and more malleable resolution to a dispute. I'm delighted to have become a CEDR accredited mediator last year and anticipate that, particularly in the fields of trust and succession litigation and trusts in divorce the facilitative and imaginative skills I have learned will be really useful, whether advising a client in a dispute or acting as mediator.


Sarah Aughwane

+442075976828

Sarah Aughwane

Senior Associate  |  Withersworldwide
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

England and Wales

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

International trust disputes
International and domestic inheritance issues including a particular focus on 1975 Act claims

Q&A

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

Acting for Mrs Cowan in the landmark Cowan v Foreman 1975 Act claim.

Do you have any outside interests or hobbies?

I’m an obsessive but incompetent skier.

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

The Harwood Arms


Andrea Zavos

+44 (0)207 079 8315

Andrea Zavos

Partner  |  Boodle Hatfield
JURISDICTION

England and Wales

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Succession planning
Dispute resolution
Asset holding structures

Enhanced Q&A

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

A rare but comprehensive victory at trial where the client also recovered 95% of its legal costs.

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

Listen hard to your client. The underlying dispute is not always resolved by winning a point of law.

What is your favourite quote?

“Denial is not just a river in Africa,” Mark Twain.

Where have you seen growth in your practice over the last year?

Partition of trust structures holding family businesses in the third/ fourth generation, which I predict will carry on into the next 12 months.

What do you think will be the biggest three challenges in your practice for the next 12 months?

Covid 19, transparency, the limitations of Zoom.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

Trust your instincts.

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

1. Use the phone
2. Use email less
3. Listen harder


Joe Donohoe

Joe Donohoe

Director  |  Asset Risk Consultants
JURISDICTION

UK
Channel Islands
Ireland
Switzerland
USA (to a lesser extent)

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

The twin focus of my career has been on trusts and investments.

Enhanced Q&A

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

Helping our clients to navigate their way through a dramatically turbulent year in the investment markets.

How did you get into private client?

Having qualified as a chartered accountant in Ireland I joined the trust department of C&L in Jersey and have been working with private clients ever since.

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

Technical skills will only get you to the table. Your ability to build relationships by being nice to people will determine how long you stay there.

What is your favourite quote?

“Everybody has a plan until I punch them in the face” – Mike Tyson

Do you have any outside interests or hobbies?

Music (mostly the Bs – Bach, Beethoven, Beatles, Bowie, Billy Bragg…), Sport (especially football, cricket and NFL) and crime fiction.

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

Le Cirque at the Bellagio in Las Vegas and Green Island in Jersey.

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

A continuing and growing focus on ESG and sustainable investments, especially amongst the emerging generations.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

Planning has its place but always embrace change and be prepared to adapt.

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

1. Use their choice of medium not yours
2. Prepare for and attend a virtual meeting with the same thoroughness as you would a physical one
3. Always be available


Rosie Schumm

+442078638582

Rosie Schumm

Partner  |  Forsters
JURISDICTION

England and Wales

INDUSTRY ACCOLADES

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Prenuptial agreements
Complex international divorce & overseas wealth
International children issues

Enhanced Q&A

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

Resolving two very litigious matters in alternative dispute resolution in private hearings tailored to suit the client’s needs.

How did you get into private client?

I’m principally a family and wealth lawyer in domestic cases. However, I realised that the really interesting work came from the private client department that referred international work. The complexity allows me to think creatively, garner advice from multiple jurisdictions and liaise with lawyers from other jurisdictions.

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

Be kind to everyone whatever their station and stay true to yourself as clients are attracted by authenticity.

What is your favourite quote?

“When they go low, we go high,” Michelle Obama.

Do you have any outside interests or hobbies?

Theatre. Shakespeare is a particular penchant. Simple pleasures such as walking and discovering new music.

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

Hyde on Piccadilly and Le Boudin Blanc in London.

Where have you seen growth in your practice over the last year?

Due to the pandemic, I have seen an increase in cases focused on variation of spousal maintenance connected to a change in income. I have also sadly seen a rise in emergency injunctions due to domestic violence and also worldwide freezing orders where one party has tried to dissipate assets. Addressing changes to child arrangements has also been a burgeoning area during Covid as parents have chosen, for example, to relocate internally (from the city to the country) or there have been urgent changes to contact arrangements due to the particular health vulnerabilities of family members.

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

In the next year, however, I imagine as weddings are rescheduled because of the lifting of lockdown restrictions, there will be a sudden influx of instructions to prepare nuptial agreements (with international dimensions and no doubt to be agreed as a matter of urgency). If the economy continues to falter, variation of spousal maintenance cases will continue to grow and there may also be set aside applications where circumstances have changed significantly since financial orders were made.

What do you think will be the biggest three challenges in your practice for the next 12 months?

1. Running big litigations remotely is more of a challenge. Remote hearings are suitable for some interlocutory and smaller matters, but there are limits to their effectiveness in complex contested matters.
2. Finding the new normal for our businesses. There have been many debates about what this might look like. However, it is an exciting time to establish new models and ways of working.
3. Ensuring the wellbeing of our teams in this state of flux. Managing remotely and motivating our teams is more challenging, so finding new ways to engage, focus and effectively support in our new models is fundamental.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

Be bolder in what you do and don’t worry so much about what others think. If you believe in something, speak up and be heard. I do that in spades now.


Sarah von Schmidt

+44 (0)20 3375 7350

Sarah von Schmidt

Partner  |  Farrer & Co
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

England and Wales


Jonathan Riley

+44 0203 0367 310

Jonathan Riley

Partner  |  Fladgate
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

England and Wales


Robert Pearce QC

+44 (0)20 7831 0081

Robert Pearce QC

Queen's Counsel  |  Radcliffe Chambers


Richard Manyon

+44 (0)207 465 4300

Richard Manyon

Partner  |  Payne Hicks Beach
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

England and Wales

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Contentious trusts
Contentious wills
Probate; estoppel

Q&A

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

An appeal to the Supreme Court.

How did you get into private client?

Curiosity!

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

Work hard on the evidence. If the court accepts your version of the facts you are nearly there.

What is your favourite quote?

“If we had had more time for discussion we should probably have made a great many more mistakes." Leon Trotsky.

Do you have any outside interests or hobbies?

Trying to grow vegetables. Cricket.

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

The White Hart, Witley – American BBQ in the Surrey countryside.


Maxine Mossman

+442070064204

Maxine Mossman

Partner  |  Clifford Chance
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

England and Wales

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Dispute resolution

Q&A

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

Settling a long-running case for a key client after many months of protracted and difficult negotiations. And being one of the organisers of the highly successful Fresh Perspectives conference in Barcelona last May.

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

Always remember that even the most entangled trust disputes can be resolved with persistence and, at times, a good dose of empathy.

What is your favourite quote?

“If you're not willing to look stupid, nothing great is ever going to happen to you.” – Dr. Gregory House, House, M.D.