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First pensions hire for Shoosmiths London office

UK law firm Shoosmiths has hired its first pensions partner in London to boost its national team.

Julian Richards has joined the firm as a partner from BDB Pitmans and brings ten years’ experience as a pensions lawyer. Prior to qualifying as a solicitor, Julian spent 15 years as an officer at the trade union Amicus (now Unite), advising exclusively on pensions issues.

Shoosmiths partner and Head of Pensions David Thompson said Julian had first-rate experience of advising both employer and trustee clients on all aspects of pensions law and practice. Added to his niche expertise in advising trade union clients, his recruitment would complement the firm’s pension offering.

David said: “The London pensions market is substantial. We have not previously had pensions lawyers based there, and we very much look forward to building our pensions offering in London through Julian’s experience in that market.

“It is part of the team’s strategic ambition to grow our capabilities in London and Julian’s appointment will provide us with the opportunity to do so.”

Julian said: “I’m delighted to be joining Shoosmiths and it is exciting to be the first pensions partner based in the London office. The firm has a fantastic growth strategy and I am looking forward to making my mark in the national team and collaborating with David and other colleagues to grow the offering in London.”

Shoosmiths’ national Pensions team advises the trustees or sponsoring employers of more than 250 occupational pension schemes, ranging from £1 million to £2 billion by asset value, including defined benefit (both final salary and career average), defined contribution and hybrid schemes, and life assurance arrangements. The firm has specialists in pensions-related disputes, projects, Pension Protection Fund assets and public sector pensions.

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