James is a Partner specialising in Trusts, tax and estate planning, specifically acting for high net worth individuals, entrepreneurs and business owners.

James has particular experience in advising business owners and the owners of rural estates about succession and/or exit planning and the applicable tax reliefs. Much of his time is spent advising in the context of contentious and semi-contentious situations, including tax and domicile enquiries and trust disputes.

In addition to his practice, James sits part time as a Judge in the Tax Tribunal, hearing and determining appeals against decisions by HMRC in respect of both direct and indirect taxes.

“James is nothing short of a genius. He is a star player in his field with a real curiosity and deep understanding of his subject, which is manifest in the lucid way he explains how complex and intractable tax provisions work. He has an infectious enthusiasm and is an absolute joy to work with.” – Citywealth client feedback

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James is a Partner specialising in Trusts, tax and estate planning, specifically acting for high net worth individuals, entrepreneurs and business owners.

James has particular experience in advising business owners and the owners of rural estates about succession and/or exit planning and the applicable tax reliefs. Much of his time is spent advising in the context of contentious and semi-contentious situations, including tax and domicile enquiries and trust disputes.

In addition to his practice, James sits part time as a Judge in the Tax Tribunal, hearing and determining appeals against decisions by HMRC in respect of both direct and indirect taxes.

“James is nothing short of a genius. He is a star player in his field with a real curiosity and deep understanding of his subject, which is manifest in the lucid way he explains how complex and intractable tax provisions work. He has an infectious enthusiasm and is an absolute joy to work with.” – Citywealth client feedback

Work highlights

  • Advising the family and trustees who between them owned a famous manufacturing business on the tax and trust issues arising from a proposed sale, including advice on the availability of CGT Entrepreneurs’ Relief on the trust shareholding (dealing with HMRC’s updated guidance), and negotiating complex family relationships in the process.
  • Liaising throughout with the corporate lawyers acting in the sale and providing transactional support to them whenever specialist private client/tax/trusts advice was needed.
  • Advising on and instructing Counsel in relation to Variation of Trusts Act applications extending trust and accumulation periods, and with ancillary amendments to trust powers – obtaining the orders sought in each case.
  • Advising on a renewed domicile enquiry, where HMRC had previously determined that the individual (an international businessman) was domiciled abroad – successfully narrowing the scope of the new enquiry.
  • Devising a wholesale restructuring exercise for a rural estate into unequal parts (including trust and absolute interests) and advising on the most tax-efficient means of implementing the reorganization.
  • Settling an HMRC enquiry into a high value corporate residence matter, having instructed Counsel, corresponded with HMRC and led the settlement meeting – the tax ultimately paid was a small fraction of HMRC’s original determination.
  • Preparing a Will for a famous entertainer with a unique collection of specialist materials and significant intellectual property interests.
  • Dealing with the fluctuating and doubtful capacity of an elderly client and, taking advantage of improvements in treatment and in consultation with medical experts, successfully putting in place a Will governing the substantial UK estate, including Grade 1 listed property.

Qualification date: 2009

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“James is nothing short of a genius. He is a star player in his field with a real curiosity and deep understanding of his subject”

Citywealth client feedback
2017