- For You
These are some of the cases we have worked on for our clients. Please note all identifying details have been changed, to maintain our clients’ anonymity.
Jemma approached the Shentons Family Law team, having made the decision to separate from her husband Robert. He had always looked after the finances for the family and she felt bewildered as to what she should now do.
We were able to advise Jemma in relation to the matrimonial home and suggest various options to avoid this having to be sold. We employed a financial advisor to assist in valuing the pension and other investments the couple held.
When the time came for submission of financial information to the Court we were in a position to complete all of the relevant forms on Jemma’s behalf. This helped the process to run smoothly and to distance Jemma from the stress of it as much as possible.
Our Disputes team acted for Mr Smith who was a director and shareholder in a successful private company. He and the other shareholders had fallen out with one of their number, who now wished to sell his shares back at a premium price.
The case involved a lot of principle and pride on both sides and needed careful financial evaluation, evidence and negotiation. An experienced solicitor from our Disputes team conducted the case and eventually negotiated an acceptable transaction. Both sides were able to walk away from the disagreement with matters resolved.
Joan lost her father very suddenly. He appointed her as Executor but she was bewildered by what was involved.
Her father had been a very private man and Joan was not even sure where his assets were held. Joan approached Shentons for help and our Wills, Probate and Trusts team were able to assist her in working through his paperwork and sending out enquiries to financial institutions and other companies in order to establish the quantity and size of his investments.
Joan’s extended family did not understand that sums of tax had to be paid before the money could be released. Our team were able to explain the practicalities to the various beneficiaries; thereby assisting Joan in diffusing any hostility.
Our Road Traffics Offences team acted for Melanie who had returned from holiday to find a court summons for driving with no insurance.
Following a number of heated phone calls she found that her bank had returned the direct debit for her car insurance without her knowledge and the insurance had therefore been cancelled.
Our team advised that she was technically guilty but that she could run a ‘special reasons’ argument to ask the Court not to impose the mandatory 6 penalty points. A lengthy written argument was formulated on Melanie’s behalf citing the relevant cases and this was put forward by our advocate at the hearing.
The Magistrates heard from Melanie herself in evidence and were convinced that the case was genuine, they found special reasons and they did not endorse her licence.
The Shentons Property Team acted for Dave who wanted to sell the flat that he bought 6 years ago. When Dave bought the property an extension of the lease term had been agreed. What Dave didn’t know was that the conveyancing company did not register the lease extension when he completed his purchase.
This meant that the property was unlikely to be worth what the seller had agreed to pay for it. Upon instructions to sell the property we noted the problem immediately and arranged to register the lease extension at the Land Registry to enable the sale to proceed.
This involved contacting the lender to explain the position and negotiate a late registration. We also sought to recover some costs from the original conveyancing company on Dave’s behalf but they had since ceased trading.
Josie and Michael approached Shentons to help in mediating a settlement following the breakdown of their relationship. They had been together 15 years but had never married.
Josie owned the house as a result of inheritance but Michael had contributed to the mortgage and maintenance of the house for the entirety of their relationship. Neither wished to go to Court and they therefore approached our mediation team to assist them in reaching a financial settlement.
Our mediator helped Josie and Michael to feel in control of the situation but also to reach a compromise on their finances with minimal stress and expense.
Shentons Criminal Law department acted for Matthew who was accused of possessing indecent images of children on his computer.
Matthew claimed from the outset that he knew nothing of the images and that he believed his computer had been hacked. The police and prosecution were highly sceptical and charged him with the offence regardless.
Matthew approached Shentons as he was unhappy with the firm who had dealt with him at the police station. Matthew was a Company Director and therefore the potential impact of the case could not be underestimated.
We helped him to avoid the Press at Court and instructed a computer expert to analyse the prosecution evidence. At trial our expert testified that there was clear evidence of hacking on Matthew’s machine and the Jury eventually acquitted him of this offence.
James and Molly had lived together for around 20 years but were not married when James suddenly passed away. James left a significant estate but he hadn’t made a Will. All of his belongings and assets therefore passed to his family members in accordance with the law and Molly was left with nothing.
Our Civil Litigation team helped Molly in making a claim for ‘reasonable financial provision’ from James’ estate.
The case went to mediation and Molly was assisted in the negotiating process by one of our specialist solicitors. We eventually secured a sizeable proportion of the estate for Molly and she was able to continue with her life.
Our Wills, Probate and Trusts team dealt with Jenny; a 50 year-old who was given the tragic news that she had just days to live. She wished to have a Will prepared within 24 hours and was resident at the local hospital.
A member of our team dropped all other commitments and visited Jenny to take down her express wishes.
Our team member then returned to the office, drafted the Will and was back at Jenny’s bedside later that day with witnesses so that everything could be completed.
Jenny was able to then have peace of mind that her final wishes were taken care of.
Of course, whilst we were able to assist in this emergency situation, such matters should not be left to the last minute. If you have not yet made your Will, or your Will needs updating, do please contact us.
Business partners Malcom and Robert approached the team at Shentons in relation to selling their mixed-use building. Their potential buyer wanted to execute the deal in a very quick timeframe and this presented something of a problem; in most circumstances notices would need to be served upon the tenants of the residential parts of the building under the Landlord & Tenant Act 1987, certain timescales would need to be observed before the property could be sold, if at all.
Our team carefully considered the 1987 Act and calculated the internal floor space applicable to the elements of the building. An exception to the 1987 applies if more than 50% of the building is attributed to the parts (not including common parts). This calculation allowed the transaction to proceed legally within the desired timeframe.
The Shentons Family Law team acted for Graham in relation to his daughter. His ex-partner was the primary carer for the child but our client had concerns regarding the child’s attendance at school and the housing provided for her.
We advised Graham regarding his options and eventually assisted him in make an application to the Court for an Order that his daughter reside with him on a full-time basis. The proceedings were fully contested by the mother and we therefore spent time gathering evidence to support his case.
We were mindful that this was extremely difficult emotionally for both parties and that everything should be dealt with sensitively throughout.
The Court eventually found in favour of our client and his daughter went to live with him. His ex-partner has since tried to make further applications to the Court to overturn the decision despite clear indications from the Court regarding the poor prospect of success to her case.
We have been able to secure an Order from the Court that she is prevented from making any further applications to the Court without being granted permission to do so. This will avoid Graham having to repeatedly deal with spurious applications to the Court.
Our Road Traffic Offences team dealt with Robert who was facing an allegation involving a car accident.
Robert had been at a party that night and was accused of taking the keys to his friend Simon’s car. Robert’s DNA had been found on the airbag and it was alleged that he had fled the scene before police arrived.
Robert emphatically denied ever driving the vehicle and we employed our own forensic expert to examine the vehicle.
We were able to show that following the crash the airbag had sagged onto the seat of the car thereby contaminating any DNA evidence available on it. Robert had travelled in the car on several occasions previously and therefore his skin cells and hair were understandably in the car.
At trial the independent witness who saw the driver run from the car described someone wholly dissimilar to Robert and in fact very much like Simon, the owner of the car which cleared up what had happened. Robert was found not guilty.
Our Property department acted for Marie whose mother, Janet, had inherited a large area of land which included a private road and a number of residential homes. Janet lived on the land but was in poor health and Marie wanted to arrange for the land to be registered.
We collated the title deeds, took statements of truth from various parties and hired surveyors to produce new, compliant plans of the property. The title was complex and challenging but we successfully registered the land which was a welcome relief for both Marie and Janet.
Mike and Yvonne were seeking a divorce and had embarked upon mediation in the hope of settling their finances. They had initially approached a mediator who was not also a qualified lawyer and found after a number of sessions they could not reach an agreement that would be approved by the Court.
They were both exasperated by the situation and finally approached a Shentons mediator to try and resolve things.
As they had already spent considerable time on the matter, they had both become entrenched in their positions and neither was prepared to compromise further.
Our skilled mediator was able to assist the couple in reaching a position that could satisfy both of their needs.
The agreement was then ultimately met with the approval of the Court which is the desired outcome for any mediation of financial issues in divorce as it gives certainty and protection to both parties.
Our Criminal Law department acted for Jon, a 16-year-old boy who had been accused of dealing drugs.
At first the case seemed simple; Jon had been caught with a large quantity of drugs on his person and it was clear they were not for personal use. He was also in possession of a knife. Jon himself would say very little about what happened and another firm might have advised him to plead guilty.
Our team took time to speak to Jon’s mother, other agencies and to have a psychiatric assessment undertaken.
It transpired that Jon had essentially been ‘groomed’ by a London gang to work for them, he had then been taken from his home in Hampshire and dumped in Gloucester where he was told to deal drugs or he would not be returned to his home.
Working with Barnardo’s we were able to establish that Jon was a trafficked child in accordance with government guidelines; he was essentially the victim and we argued he should not be criminalised.
The expert assessment showed Jon to have severe learning disabilities and he was therefore incredibly vulnerable to pressure from sophisticated criminals.
We submitted a legal argument that his case should be thrown out and eventually the Prosecution dropped the case.