James is a pensions and rewards partner advising clients on the set up, operation and closure of a variety of pension and benefit schemes. He has extensive experience of big ticket pensions issues in multi-jurisdiction transactions across a variety of sectors, particularly in oil and gas and private equity sectors. 

Making use of the knowledge he gained working at the Solicitor's office of the DWP.DH he has also advised public sector client on cutting edge New Fair Deal matters and on a number of high profile insolvencies.

In addition to pensions James advises clients on holistic benefits issues including share and option schemes, long term incentive plans, healthcare trusts, standalone death benefits and modifying existing international schemes for UK employees. He has particular expertise in acting for US employers looking to extend their benefits offering worldwide or sense check against local legal requirements.

More broadly James writes regularly for a number of pensions knowledge sources and is a member of the Association of Pensions Lawyers and the Association of Share Plan Lawyers. 

Experience
  • Government Department – advice to Government on applying existing policy on the return of former civil servants in the context of a complex insolvency 
  • Private Equity Investor  - providing advice and support during negotiations to a private equity investor involved in a multi-billion pound purchase of a multi-jurisdictional business unit and associated separation issues post transaction
  • Telecoms Company – pensions issues associated with the hive out of a business unit and sale to a third party of a luxury phone business. Supporting client with regulatory issues including Regulator clearance application
  • Railway Franchise – supporting franchise holder through a series of changes to the remit of the franchise and associated transfers of liability within the Railways Pension Scheme
  • Oil Major JV – updating and amending JV documentation to reflect current legal and commercial requirements for a JV set up by two oil majors. Providing client with technical, drafting and negotiation support during discussions on set up of a separate defined benefit pension scheme following update
  • Aviation Company – supporting business in dealing with an open defined benefit pension scheme and negotiations with the trustees of that scheme to provide industry appropriate benefits going forward
  • US Company – assisting Client with modifying existing long term incentive plan for UK requirements in respect of branch office in the UK
  • UK Company – putting in place a new Enterprise Management Incentives scheme to assist new set up in incentivising its staff at a point where cash flow is limited
  • US Travel Company – assisting Client with legacy defined benefit pensions issues for UK staff and advising on limitation of liability
  • UK Bank Pension Scheme – advising the trustees of a large defined benefit pension scheme on a mix of issues in the context of major industry upheaval.