Patrick’s practice focuses on trust and succession litigation including Inheritance Act claims, breach of trust actions and applications for construction of trust documents and wills. He also advises on removal of personal representatives and trustees.
He gives advice on all types of charity litigation, dealing with the Charity Commission and Attorney General in latter’s role as protector of charity, as well as fraud and asset tracing. He has a particular interest in SE Asia, having practised in Hong Kong for 16 years.
As wealthy families get larger and issues become more complex, there is a growing need to resolve some of the issues by means of alternative dispute resolution and sometimes, by referral to the courts.
We have one of the largest international teams dedicated to dealing with such issues as they arise, or with such disputes where no internal resolution is possible.
We deal extensively with such claims before probate, surrogate’s and chancery courts in the United States, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong and certain offshore jurisdictions, and in other offshore jurisdictions, where we are not admitted to the courts, we work closely with local lawyers to provide a seamless service to our clients.
Claims take numerous forms, but areas of concentration include working with families to avoid these problems in the first place. In a number of circumstances, issues relate to the performance (or non-performance) of trustees, their relations with beneficiaries, or claims by non-beneficiaries with respect to trust assets.
In many cases we help clients resolve issues without the need for personal details to be made public through litigation.
Withers has been acting for successful individuals, families and institutions for over 100 years. We advise clients on their business and personal legal needs both at home and abroad. In this fast moving and increasingly regulated world the need for integrated and timely advice has never been more urgent.
2014 was book-ended by the opening of our San Francisco office, which was launched in January in order to better service the needs of our growing Californian client-base, and ended with the arrival of our first Australian office in Sydney. This coincided with the launch of Withers SBL, an alliance established by Withers, BLW and SBL Shmith to offer tax and estate planning, corporate and commercial and immigration law services.