Devonshires secure two new rankings in Legal 500 Guide

The most recent Legal 500 directory has been published, and we are delighted to have not only maintained our previous rankings, but secure two increased rankings for our Debt Recovery and Construction: Contentious practices.

You can read the full Legal 500 breakdown of each of our ranked practices below.

Increased Rankings

Debt Recovery – Ranked Tier 1

Providing ‘a fantastic service from start to finish‘, Devonshires Solicitors LLP has a full-service debt recovery department, which advises SMEs, financial institutions, multinationals, social housing sector clients and local authorities, from its offices in London, Colchester and Leeds. Practice co-head Robert Edge ‘works tirelessly to get the desired results for his clients‘, on matters including secured and unsecured debts within the UK and overseas. Jim Varley is the other team leader, specialising in forensic recovery and contentious insolvency. Litigator Nikki Bowker has developed impressive knowledge in injunctive relief.

Construction: Contentious – Ranked Tier 4

Devonshires Solicitors LLP ‘has a well-rounded contentious construction team who are all commercially sharp and client-focused.’ Mark London heads up the department, and represents residential developers as well as subcontractors. He is well versed in adjudication, arbitration and litigation, acting in the TCC on a variety of disputes. He is supported by the ‘intelligent, commercial and committed’  Matthew Cocklin, who is noted for his work on fire safety and cladding in high rise buildings. The team was boosted in late 2019 by the return of Michael Wharfe after 12 years at Steptoe and Johnson UK LLP.

Maintained Rankings

Social Housing: Finance – Ranked Tier 1

Devonshires Solicitors LLP offers an ‘exceptionally experienced and knowledgeable’ service to registered providers and registered social landlords, both within London and at a national level. The group advises on all areas of finance relevant to the sector, including wholesale and retail bond issues, private placements, and syndicated and bilateral loans, as well as restructuring and property charging. In 2019, head of banking Julian Barker advised the Wrekin Housing Group Limited on a full £350m restructure of its corporate financing including facilities with existing lenders as well as new lenders. Sharon Kirkham leads the securitisation team, which also includes Leeds-based Chris DrabbleAndrew Cowan is heavily involved in the financing of affordable housing projects for the growing urban communities in Africa. Gary Grigor is also recommended.

Social Housing: Local Authorities and Registered Providers – Ranked Tier 2

Devonshires Solicitors LLP is extremely active in the social housing sector, advising all of the London G15 members. The team offers a full service to its housing provider clients, including advising on housing management, regeneration projects, mergers and structuring work. Nick Billingham, Andrew Cowan and consultant Gareth Hall are the key practitioners.

Clinical Negligence: Claimant – Ranked Tier 4

Along with its ‘depth of knowledge in all areas‘, the ‘pragmatic‘ clinical negligence team at Devonshires Solicitors LLP is known particularly for its expertise with claims in the ophthalmic industry. Practice head Nick Grant also leads the specialist eye department, which regularly handles consent-based cases. The firm’s team also includes ‘fantastic solicitor‘ Karen Cathcart, who has experience in claims involving surgical errors, incorrect prescriptions of medication, and delay diagnoses.

Fraud: Civil – Ranked Tier 4

Devonshires Solicitors LLP ‘pragmatic and client focused’ team handles cross-border fraud disputes and investigations. Philip Barden handles a wide range of commercial disputes for corporations, including banking, fraud, insurance, IT, PFI and shipping matters. James Dunn acts for claimants and defendants in civil fraud cases, including asset recovery.

Infrastructure (PFI and PPP) – Ranked Tier 4

Devonshires Solicitors LLP has particular experience in PPP projects and advises on a broad range of matters within project finance. The firm advises on PPP projects in a number of sectors including leisure, housing, transport, and healthcare. Paul Buckland heads the projects department and Robert Turner acts as co-head. Caroline Mostowfi is also noted. Clients praise the team’s ‘incredible commitment and tenacity’.

Construction: Non-Contentious – Ranked Tier 5

Devonshires Solicitors LLP is well-known for its work for housing associations and housing trusts. The firm’s non-contentious team handles all forms of construction contracts as well as development agreements. Mark London leads the team and has assisted developers and local authorities while Kathryn Kligerman acts on developments and infrastructure projects, advising developers and land owners. Asif Patel is a key contact for developers, funders, investment vehicles, local authorities and registered social housing landlords.

Commercial Litigation: Mid-Market – Ranked Tier 6

Devonshires Solicitors LLP’s large following of housing providers represents a broad part of the firm’s client base. The dispute resolution team is particularly focused on insolvency, debt recovery and criminal law, along with fraud, cross-border investigations, regulatory work and private finance initiatives. Philip Barden, James Dunn and Jim Varley are all experienced partners.


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