James specialises in private wealth disputes, dealing with trust, estate and succession matters within the UK and internationally. James also deals with disputes where trusts and private wealth issues are involved in wider commercial disputes, such as fraud and asset recovery.
James joined Stevens & Bolton in 2017, having trained and qualified at a Top 50 firm. He became a partner in 2019.
James acts predominately for private clients or for those who advise private clients, such as corporate trustees, private banks and other law firms.
James advises on claims by or involving estates and trusts, most commonly involving high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth individuals. He acts for executors, trustees and beneficiaries, and also specialises in advising on claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975.
James also has a substantial practice advising on claims overlapping the trusts and family court jurisdictions, dealing with trustees and beneficiaries who have become involved in divorce proceedings and on issues arising from the enforcement and implantation of ancillary relief orders made in divorce proceedings.
Recent highlights include:
- Securing a substantial payment from an offshore trust to a disappointed beneficiary
- Advising several minor beneficiaries in a claim against their parent’s estate
- Acting for the trustee of a substantial offshore structure concerning claims alleged against the trustee by the settlor and one of the beneficiaries
- Advising several investors in a fund concerning their claims against the directors of the fund and third parties
- Advising a spouse in her claims to enforce the terms of her divorce order against assets held by her husband in the UK
- Acting for the beneficiaries in a successful claim to remove the executors of their parent’s estate
- Acting for the successful claimant in a claim to set aside a deed which removed the claimant’s interest in her father’s estate
James was shortlisted as “Partner of the Year” at the Citywealth Future Leaders Awards 2019, and has been named as one of Legal Week’s Private Client Global Elite “Ones to Watch” for the last three years. James has also been shortlisted in the “Litigation Rising Star” category at the British Legal awards 2020.
He is ranked as a Tier 1 individual in the Chambers HNW directory 2020, and as a “Next Generation Partner” in the Legal 500.
James was also named in the Spears 500 as a leading advisor outside London.
James is a committee member of ConTrA, the Contentious Trusts Association.