Freeths is highly regarded by the UK’s leading law directory for its legal specialisms

03 November 2017

Chambers and Partners, considered the UK’s leading legal directory, has ranked Freeths’ Oxford office as a top tier law firm in the Thames Valley (Oxford and surrounding areas) in its 2018 edition.

The firm is top ranked for specialist legal advice in corporate, private wealth law, agriculture, family, and clinical negligence.  In addition, the directory highly regards their other practice areas such as commercial property, dispute resolution, contentious trusts and probate, and personal injury. Widely regarded as the most authoritative guide to the legal profession in the UK, Chambers & Partners covers 50 cities and counties in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Chambers has been ranking the best lawyers since 1990 and the guide is compiled after detailed interviews with lawyers and their clients. Its rankings are based on certain qualities valued by clients, such as client service, technical experience and expertise, diligence and commercial perspicacity.

This is what the directory says about Freeths’ top ranking practice areas and lawyers:

Corporate (Top Tier)
Interviewees praise the "very high-quality service" that the team provides.
"They were absolutely fantastic. They're very knowledgeable and they really understand their clients," say sources.

Notable practitioners 
Leon Arnold has recently been involved in a series of significant disposals. He is held in high regard by his clients, who say: "He knows his stuff - he's an excellent negotiator and looks at the bigger picture."
Malcolm Sadler's client base includes companies at every stage of their development, from entrepreneurial start-ups to mature entities, and their investors. His wide-ranging practice earns him a reputation among clients as "a very strong and competent all-rounder."

Malin Svanberg Larsson advises clients on such corporate matters as buyings and buyouts, corporate restructurings and shareholder agreements, as well as M&A. One satisfied client states: "I can't sing her praises highly enough. She's very good. Very diligent and very responsive."

Clinical Negligence (Top Tier)
One impressed client reports: "They show compassion and never forget you as a person who has been through medical hell. It was a very long fight, but they kept on fighting and digging, and showed dedication throughout."

Market commentators also praise the team's diligence. One says that the lawyers "handle the most complex, highest-value cases well and do an efficient job," while another remarks: "I'm really impressed by the work. They're a really thorough team to work for, they are extremely well prepared and their client care is fantastic."

Notable practitioners
Carolyn Lowe is acknowledged for her expertise in high-value obstetrics cases concerning birth injury, stillbirth and neonatal death. Sources say that she "knows all there is to know on cerebral palsy birth injury cases," and explain that she "works hard for her clients and manages their expectations well."

Agriculture & Rural Affairs (Top Tier)
Sources say: "They're among the best in Oxford and they're well known. They're good, efficient and pleasant to deal with."

Clients say: "They look after my interests at all costs. They cover everything in detail and make sure you understand the consequences."

Notable practitioners 
Iain Davis advises clients on agricultural property matters including tenancies and environmental matters. One source comments: "He is so very approachable and his people skills are outstanding. He always keeps me in the loop and I have never felt he doesn't have time for me. I am really fortunate to have him as my solicitor and cannot extol his virtues enough. He is wonderful and a rare gem."

Samantha Leigh assists clients on agricultural and commercial property matters. She offers advice to landed estates, tenants and institutions, and is described by sources as "easy and pleasant to deal with."

Sarah Duffy offers advice on agricultural property matters to high net worth clients. One source comments: "I would rate her highly as having a particularly good attention to detail and dealing with things in a prompt manner. She has a good understanding of the needs of private clients."

Private Wealth Law (Top Tier)
Freeths has a "great team in the Oxford area" and is seen as a "top regional firm" handling "high level disputes." The team is able to assist on a wide range of private wealth matters, handling the administration of estates and trusts, wills and probate, and Powers of Attorney. A source reports: "Freeths are very well regarded, they are a very long-established Oxford firm. The team is great, they're ever so good."

Sources further comment: "I would very happily send people to Freeths" and "I have respect for Freeths, they're a good firm, I've been impressed by their work."

Notable practitioners
Nigel Roots is "technically experienced, professional and competent. I would recommend Nigel, he was perfectly good at explaining the law, he was really on top of the details," comments another interviewee, with another adding Roots is "well respected" throughout the private client field.

Jane Maitland is highly regarded for her private client expertise and her client manner. "She's very accessible," says a source, "I've never found anybody quite so easy to work with. If you don't understand, she'll start again from a different angle. She is very patient and thorough. I really found her so good and was happy to work with her and discuss quite personal things." The source adds: "She is relaxed but professional, that's the thing. You don't feel tense, you feel you're in safe hands. I find Freeths and Jane so refreshingly efficient."

Family (Top Tier)
A client notes: "I thought my team was amazing. I was impressed every step of the way and feel I couldn't have been any better represented."

Another client commends the team's "sound advice, given in a very open and non-judgemental way."
Notable practitioners 

Head of department Rachael Oakes has notable experience advising on complex financial matters related to separations. She comes highly commended by clients and peers alike. "She is a class act; she is absolutely brilliant with clients and has a pleasant approach," a source says, with another adding: "I found her warm and friendly, and incredibly efficient."

Claire Colbert assists with divorce proceedings involving significant assets and often a cross-border element. A client reports: "Claire was in absolute control of the case. She was always a few steps ahead, in fact. She is hard-working, thorough, precise." Another source adds: "She is very sensitive to clients' emotional states but firm and honest throughout."

Please go to Chambers & Partners for further details of our rankings.. 

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