Call: 2006

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For practice areas see below

"He is always very diplomatic and polite, but he is direct"

"He's technically superb, is very good with clients, and is a very persuasive advocate who provides a tremendous service"

Chambers UK 2017


"He is very, very good on his feet. He is just a fantastic advocate"

Chambers UK 2016


"He also has a fantastic eye for detail, and is able to see the bigger picture"

"He's extremely thorough and very personable"

Chambers UK 2015


"He has practical, approachable, pragmatic style"

"He is very friendly, which makes things so much easier"

Chambers UK 2014


"Excellent value for money"

Legal 500 2013


"Has earned the respect of both his peers and instructing solicitors"

Chambers UK 2012


Practice

Mark has a thriving traditional Chancery and Court of Protection practice and accepts instructions in both contentious and non-contentious matters across the full range of Chambers' core practice areas, with a particular emphasis on:

  • Wills and probate
  • Estates and family provision
  • Trusts
  • Personal taxation
  • Real property
  • Relates professional negligence

Notable Cases

  • Randall v Randall [2014] EWHC 3134 (Ch), [2016] EWCA Civ 494: Instructed at first instance in High Court and on appeal to Court of Appeal in leading case, and only modern decision not limited to 1975 Act, on standing to challenge or propound a Will under Part 57 of the CPR.
  • Colling v Ripley [2016]: Successfully applied for removal of sibling beneficiary as executor, notwithstanding intimated dispute over validity of two codicils to Will which amended appointment of executors, with effect of avoiding need for contentious probate claim; claim issued in 2015 but secured order for defendant to pay claimants' costs since 2006.
  • Harris v Earwicker [2015] EWHC 1915 (Ch): Successfully defended residuary beneficiary's claim for removal of executors, and obtained indemnity costs against all residuary beneficiaries notwithstanding application made by only one of them.
  • Swetenham v Walkley [2014] WTLR 845: Successfully brought claim under Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 on behalf of co-habitant where co-habitation disputed on basis deceased retained own house and often slept there.
  • Worgan v Savory [2014]: Instructed in claim for rectification of a Will which created life interest in main asset of estate and directed reversion to be held on trusts of residue, which also held for life tenant.
  • Ritchie v Joslin [2009] EWHC 709 (Ch): Successfully established invalidity of Will on ground of lack of testamentary capacity by reason of the testatrix's delusions as to the character and conduct of her children.
  • Glass v Segelman [2008] WTLR 1615: Rectification of a deed of gift in the context of related testamentary provision.

Recent Court of Protection Work

  • Application for authority to invest part of P's significant wealth in co-ownership of home for parent following sale of co-owned family home on divorce of parents.
  • Disputed property and affairs deputyship application in respect of multi-millionaire P in circumstances where one of P's major assets and sources of income was her shareholding in a family company; acting for the proposed deputy, who was a director of and shareholder in the company.
  • Disputed Statutory Will application which went to final hearing with 5 represented parties. Acted for litigation friend for P's minor children and successfully argued (against the professional deputy and two other parties) that the Will should provide for lower capital provision for P's spouse, with an additional life interest trust in their favour, so as to achieve an inheritance tax saving to the benefit of the children by using the spouse exemption.
  • Advice in respect of the administration of a personal injury trust for the benefit of a minor who will lack capacity on attaining the age of 18 years, and in particular the Court of Protection's jurisdiction and power to direct the trustees to use the Trust Fund to purchase a home for P and family outside of the jurisdiction, and the structure the Court of Protection would require for the ownership and administration of such property and any other money from the trust transferred out of the jurisdiction.
  • Representing one of several charities in complex Statutory Will case in which P was intestate and without close relatives, but had made a lost Will many years previously and given instructions for a Will after losing capacity.

Professional memberships

Mark is a member of the Chancery Bar Association and the Property Bar Association, and is secretary of the Denning Society.


Publications and lecturing

Mark is co-author (with Martyn Frost and Penelope Reed QC) of Risk and Negligence in Wills, Estates and Trusts, published by OUP (1st ed 2009, 2nd ed 2014).

Mark speaks regularly to solicitors, STEP branches and special interest groups, and professional conferences, and records webinars for a variety of providers, on all areas of his practice.


Education

Mark read law at the University of Bristol, graduating with First Class Honours and winning both the Herbert Smith Mooting Competition and the Maitland Essay Prize. Mark is a Hardwicke, Lord Denning, and Sunley Scholar of Lincoln’s Inn.