HFC has again retained its Band 1 ranking for Family/Matrimonial Law in the Chambers and Partners High Net Worth Guide. Frances Hughes is reconfirmed as a Star Individual. Pauline Fowler, Alex Carruthers and Mark Harper all retain Band 1 rankings. Renato Labi retains his Band 2 ranking and Caroline Park retains her Band 3 ranking.
Chambers notes the firm “handles high-value matrimonial finance and children matters.” A market commentator notes HFC provides clients with “loads of partner input,” adding that “they are all good and have a can-do attitude which inspires confidence in their clients.” A client says: “There was no notion of ever feeling ‘lost’ and ‘in despair’, the firm undeniably addressed everything from A to Z.”
Frances Hughes is reconfirmed as a Star Individual and is described as one of the “doyens of family law” who “deals with huge-value and hugely complex divorce matters.” Sources note that she is “intellectually and strategically superb” on such matters and another describes Frances as “the toughest divorce solicitor in the country”. The source adds that she “gets the best cases and knows just how to handle them. She is rightly in the star category.”
Pauline Fowler retains her Band 1 ranking, and is described as “well versed in dealing with high net worth clients on a range of family matters, including divorce, children, adoption and surrogacy.” A source says Pauline is “fabulous, so clever, fantastically good” and that she runs a “varied practice.”
Alex Carruthers retains his Band 1 ranking, and is recognised as “an incredibly clever” litigator with particular expertise in complex high net worth divorce cases involving multi-jurisdictional financial arrangements. According to a source, Alex has “always had great instincts”. Another family lawyer notes: “You can do business with him and get things sorted, and he knows the parameters of what is a sensible settlement and what is not.”
Mark Harper retains his Band 1 ranking. The guide notes he “handles matrimonial cases, with particular expertise in international cases involving trusts” and “also advises high net worth clients on pre- and post-nuptial agreements.” A source notes that Mark is “one of those people who you know is thinking all the time, so he is strategising, he is calming the client. He is thinking about the next step and definitely top tier.”
Renato Labi retains his Band 2 ranking, and is described as a “well-regarded litigator who handles matrimonial finance disputes”. He also handles complex children’s cases. A source notes that “each step is carefully judged, and tenacity is what comes across.”
Caroline Park retains her Band 3, and is recognised for her “wide-ranging litigation background in family law” and is considered the “voice of reason in a lot of cases,” according to a fellow family lawyer. Caroline is known for handling “financial disputes, child arrangements and advises on pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements.” A commentator notes she is “an excellent negotiator” and “highly strategic,” adding that “it is like she is playing chess; she is thinking of all angles and is several moves ahead.”
Hughes Fowler Carruthers is a top-rated, niche family law practice founded in 2001. It is widely regarded as one of London’s foremost family law practices and the partners are recognised in their own right in the leading legal directories. The firm features in The Times ‘Best Law Firms 2019’ guide and won the Family/Matrimonial Law Firm of the Year award at Citywealth’s Magic Circle Awards 2018. Chair of the board, Frances Hughes, and Mark Harper are both ranked in the top ten family lawyers in Spear’s Wealth and Frances Hughes is ranked in the top 10 London lawyers (across all disciplines) in Super Lawyers and is Citywealth Entrepreneur Powerwoman of 2018. Most of the partners are fellows of the International Academy of Family Lawyers and some partners are also members of the International Bar Association. At least 80% of the firm’s work involves international elements and the firm deals with many jurisdictional disputes, having close links with lawyers and many other professionals overseas.
HFC’s full profile can be found on the Chambers HNW website.