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4 October 2019

Norwich law firm, Steeles Law celebrates retaining top tier ranking in The Legal 500 guide

The Legal 500 provides the most comprehensive coverage on recommended law firms in the UK, with the eagerly awaited East Anglian listing launched on the 26th September. Steeles Law is delighted to announce an impressive 13 practice areas recognised, along with 2 elite ‘leading individuals’, 2 lawyers listed as ‘rising stars’ and 12 lawyers are recommended by the Legal 500.

‘I am delighted that our legal team have had their hard work and achievements acknowledged with highlights including top tier ranking, leading individuals and rising stars’ said Nicki Ramsbottom, Director ‘We have achieved one of our best years for Legal 500 recognition, which has highlighted our growth into new business services and recruitment drive attracting top talent. It is fitting that we are able to celebrate these achievements during our 50th anniversary year’

So what does this actually mean to our clients? Andrea Smith, Marketing Executive explains that the Legal 500 rankings give examples of past work, client base and most importantly for prospective clients, work testimonials. ‘As a firm we are extremely grateful for the support we’ve had from clients and referrers with excellent feedback. Prospective clients can be assured that they will get the very best service when they instruct Steeles Law. Every client situation is different, irrespective of what area of law is being addressed, as a firm we take pride on treating every client as an individual and working with them to achieve the best outcome for their needs

Overview:

CORPORATE AND COMMERCIAL
Work highlights include regulation and governance for a political party, renegotiation of a £14m commercial agreement for not for profit organisation and bespoke commercial agreements for an expanding manufacturer developing a revolutionary new product.

‘The firm is flexible and listens to us, providing wise and realistic commercial advice in our best interests that is understandable to laymen; and they are prepared to work late and over weekends to deliver our needs.’

COMMERCIAL LITIGATION
The dispute resolution team acts for a wide range of clients in various industries including food production, education, business advisory and political parties. Recommended solicitor Rachel Sims ‘is really smart, sensitive and persuasive. She understood the problems, reacted quickly and got the job done.’ And Damian Pitts, formerly of Pinney Talfourd LLP.

DEBT RECOVERY
Legal Executive Denise Traube, who has 17 years’ litigation experience, retains her ‘leading individual’ status and 1st tier ranking for Debt Recovery, she is supported by solicitors Rachel Sims and Damian Pitts.

BANKING AND FINANCE
Head of Company Commercial Richard Bailey leads on banking and finance matters with Karen Bacon. The Corporate, Commercial Property and Dispute Resolution practices work together to advise investors and borrowers, including multinational corporations and high-net-worth individuals in the UK and overseas, on financing matters.

EMPLOYMENT
‘The advice given has always been timely and of a very high standard’

Oliver Brabbins leads the employment practice, in which Director Robert Hickford is a rising star. ‘Robert Hickford always makes himself available to help. He is very experienced and gives excellent counsel including ideas, options and other considerations’. The firm acts for a number of notable clients in the food sector and continues to attract prominent clients in other industries for discrimination cases, large-scale redundancies and restructuring, TUPE matters and industrial relations. ‘I trust and appreciate their counsel. Unlike some other firms they don’t sit on the fence and work through solutions with you to enable a decent outcome. They also don’t labour points and issues that don’t need reams of advice, which we appreciate.’

PRIVATE CLIENT – AGRICULTURE AND ESTATES
Karen Bacon has substantial experience in agricultural property transactions in Norfolk and Suffolk and frequently handles matters of inheritance tax and succession planning for agricultural clients.

CHARITIES AND NOT FOR PROFIT
The charities group is led from London by Michael Fahy. The firm acted for a number of high-profile charities during the course of the year.

FAMILY
The small practice handles high-value and complex family cases and is highly regarded among referrers in Suffolk and Norfolk, most notably in Children matters and financial remedy cases. ‘A very efficient practice. A very friendly office. Staff are always polite in person or when receiving calls.’

PRIVATE CLIENT – PERSONAL TAX TRUSTS AND PROBATE
Steeles Law has six specialist fee-earners in its well-established Wills, Probate and Tax group, which has a strong reputation in the administration of estates and matters concerning powers of attorney and mental capacity. Practice head Karen Bacon has 30 years’ experience and is a leading light in the market. She works from both Norwich and Diss to advise clients in Norfolk, Suffolk and further afield. Amy Taylor is recommended as a rising star and is praised by her clients as ‘We appreciated the apparent breadth of her knowledge and the options she presented, while leaving us to make decisions on an informed basis.’

EDUCATION
Led by Corporate partner Richard Bailey, this team focuses predominantly on advising multi-academy trusts. The firm has converted more than 30 schools to academy status and currently act for six multi-academy trusts. The team also undertakes work for further education colleges and a local specialist university. The scope of its work also covers property and employment law.

REAL ESTATE – COMMERCIAL PROPERTY
The Commercial Property group at Steeles Law is led from London but the Norwich office plays a pivotal role in a practice that acts for developers, investors, landlords, tenants and landowners, in sectors such as retail, commercial and residential development, charities, education and agriculture. In Norwich, Simon Button’s caseload includes work for multi-academy trusts and McDonald’s franchisees. Praise from clients include ‘The team is very knowledgeable and always very helpful and attentive to your needs.’, ‘I found them a joy to be dealing with and highly recommend them to other people.’ And ‘Lisha Gorsia is very helpful. She has no arrogance or self-importance.’

PROPERTY LITIGATION
A first year ranking for Property Litigation as a result of the growing caseload handled by Rachel Sims and Damian Pitts. Rachel has a strong track record in tenant insolvency matters, dilapidation’s claims, forfeiture matters and contested break options with Damien frequently representing commercial landlords in claims for forfeiture and dilapidation’s, and for both commercial landlords and tenants in business tenancy renewal claims.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY
Led by Corporate partner Richard Bailey has a niche in acting for clients in the hi-tech engineering sector, particularly those involved in cycling, automotive and motorsport. Bailey also advises publishers on copyright and trade mark issues, and the firm is increasingly active in assisting clients in the creative industries with copyright matters, design rights, patents, trade marks and the law of confidentiality. Denise Traube and Rachel Sims are also building up the firm’s profile in contentious IP matters.

**Current rankings and information taken from The Legal 500 United Kingdom 2020 edition

For more information on services for you, and services for your business, please call 01603 59800 or complete the ‘Get in touch’ online enquiry form and a member of the team will contact you. Appointments available in Norwich, Diss and London.

*The information provided in this article is designed to provide useful information on the subject, not to provide specific legal advice.