Pump Court Tax Chambers

Tax: Private Client Department

London (Bar)
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Pump Court Tax Chambers is highly regarded as "the pre-eminent tax set in the UK." Members handle a wide array of domestic and international private client tax cases including those concerning inheritance tax planning, residence and domicile matters and trust reorganisations, among other issues. Sources note that "this is definitely the go-to set for technical tax advice." "It is a very strong team and a leader in the field for tax."

Client service: Rob Adams is the deputy team leader. "Rob provides a good point of contact and is particularly helpful on VAT procedure. He does all he can to ensure timescales are met."


David Ewart QC

Regarded for his work in both contentious and non-contentious matters, he is instructed by both taxpayers and the Revenue. He is sought after for inheritance tax work and other highly complex issues.
Strengths: "He is a very experienced litigator who is formidable in court." "He is very thorough and he will put points in a low-key way, so they creep up on you."
Recent work: Acted for the taxpayer in R (On the Application of Locke) v HMRC, a case concerning whether, and under what circumstances, Accelerated Payment Notices and Follower Notices should be issued.


David Yates QC

New silk with a strong reputation at the Tax Bar. He is known for his detailed approach and is regularly instructed both by taxpayers and by HMRC.
Strengths: "He is someone who is very thorough; he knows the case inside out and back to front and he is never caught out by unexpected surprises. He is a very good advocate."
Recent work: Acted in Routier & Venables v HMRC, a case concerning inheritance tax in the context of charitable giving.

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Elizabeth Wilson

Highly respected junior with a broad and successful private client tax practice. She is noted for her work for HMRC but also frequently represents taxpayers. She has particular experience in APR and BPR cases, offshore trusts, partnerships and non-domiciliary tax planning.
Strengths: "She possesses a lot of knowledge about inheritance tax, writes really well and is articulate." "She is incredibly sharp and practical."
Recent work: Acted in Hancock v HMRC, a Supreme Court case considering the true interpretation of Section 116 of the Taxation of Chargeable Gains Act 1992.


Emma Chamberlain

An exceptionally well-known and highly respected tax junior with an impressive reputation for her handling of tax and trust advice. She is a particularly fine choice of counsel for offshore matters and is regularly trusted by high net worth individuals. Such is her standing that she was recently awarded an OBE for 'services to government tax policy'.
Strengths: "She is enormously knowledgeable. Emma is a genius; she knows more than almost anyone about trusts and tax."
Recent work: Acted for the estate in Shelford (Executors of J Herbert deceased) v HMRC, a test case on the home loan scheme which was a strategy to save inheritance tax.


James Rivett QC

A personable and impressive advocate who is in high demand, Rivett has particular expertise in the often arcane world of variation of trust, and he is also an expert in heritage property matters for landed estates.
Strengths: "James is excellent. He is very personable and a clear advocate."
Recent work: Acted in Ingenious Film Partners v HMRC, the largest and most high-profile film finance tax scheme case.


Kevin Prosser QC

Often acts in the most highly complex and high-value matters across the full scope of private client tax work. He appears in income tax and employee benefit trust cases in the appellate courts, and also has experience in double taxation matters. Prosser sits as a deputy High Court judge.
Strengths: "Kevin is brilliant; he is extremely clever and gives extremely robust tax advice. You feel very safe with him as he knows exactly what to do. He knows the law and is incredibly robust."
Recent work: Acted in W Reeves v HMRC, a case concerning a taxpayer who was a UK resident member of an LLP and who had transferred his interest to a UK resident company in which he held all of the shares. The matter concerned holdover relief from Capital Gains Tax under Section 165 of the CGA.


Laura Poots

Has particular expertise in offshore trust and family partnership structuring and domicile matters.
Strengths: "She is incredibly clear, good at setting expectations and good at outlining the next steps. She is very good technically, but also very good at spotting those things that lots of people wouldn't think of."
Recent work: Acted for HMRC in a significant case concerning the tax status of loyalty bonuses paid out by the UK’s biggest investment platform, Hargreaves Lansdown.


Richard Vallat QC

Practises in all areas of private client tax work, with a particular emphasis on offshore trusts, tax planning and cross-border and domicile issues. He is regularly sought after by high net worth individuals.
Strengths: "He gives pragmatic and sensible advice and does a very good job." "Good, thorough and fair, he is a pleasure to be against and very amenable."
Recent work: Acted in Ingenious Film Partners v HMRC, the largest and most high-profile film finance tax scheme case.


William Massey QC

Exceptionally well-known and highly respected silk with a commanding reputation at the Tax Bar. He is sought after for the most complex and high-value work, including planning, trusts and estate matters.
Strengths: "He is an incredibly safe pair of hands who is very reassuring. He is the most knowledgeable person around for landed estates work."
Recent work: Acted for the estate in Shelford (Executors of J Herbert deceased) v HMRC, a test case on the home loan scheme which was a strategy to save inheritance tax.