Bahamas - Offshore: Trusts Lawyers & Law Firms - HNW - Chambers and Partners
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HNW Guide

Offshore: Trusts — Bahamas

Band 1

From the HNW guide

This pre-eminent Bahamian law firm is recognised for its long history in the Bahamas, and is considered one of the big players in the trusts area by local practitioners. The firm's private client, trusts and estates group represents banks and trust companies, as well as high net worth individuals and families. The private client team handles the preparation and amendment of wills and powers of attorney for Bahamas clients or those with Bahamian assets. Graham Thompson also deals with complex cross-border trust matters, representing both domestic and offshore banks and international families.

Notable practitioners

Sean McWeeney QC heads up the firm's private client, trusts and estates group, and has decades of experience in Bahamian trust law. He represents institutional clients, as well as high net worth individuals and families that have settled in the Bahamas. McWeeney is known for handling both contentious and non-contentious trust matters; his work includes the creation of structures and the resolution of family disputes. One source observes that McWeeney "has a very, very good reputation on the advice side."

Tanya Hanna has a recognised speciality in trusts law. Her clients include trust companies and private individuals, whom she advises on trust and corporate matters. Hanna also handles sophisticated estate planning for high net worth individuals and families, including will preparation, and the creation of foundations, trusts and private trust companies. She is "well recognised on structuring" within the community, and she takes an active role as a speaker and author on trusts-related matters.

Ryan Pinder was recently made a partner at Graham Thompson. He was formerly Bahamas Minister of Financial Services and Trade and has also worked in the banking industry. His practice focuses on planning for individuals and families, both internationally and domestically. Pinder handles trusts, structuring, estate planning and wealth management for his clients, as well as dealing with their various businesses and companies across the world. Recognised for the cross-border elements of his practice, Pinder works with Latin American and US clients in particular.

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Band 1

From the HNW guide

Higgs & Johnson has a well-established private client and wealth management group with extensive trusts and foundations experience. An interviewee says that "they are a first-class firm, very strong, with an institutional client base. They're very highly regarded."

Known for their advisory work, the firm's lawyers principally advise trust companies, particularly on the administration and creation of complex private trusts for high net worth individuals and businesses. "Higgs are pretty big in private client work, and they're very good estate planning lawyers," comments a source. The team also offers wills and probate services and can assist with immigration matters.

Notable practitioners

Philip Dunkley QC is a litigation specialist and is known as a "leading litigator on trusts." He also handles private wealth management matters.

Earl Cash chairs the firm's private client and wealth management group, and has "a good reputation on the island as a private client lawyer." He advises on the creation and ongoing administration of trusts, and is particularly known for his work with prominent trust companies in the Bahamas, acting as a "key adviser." Cash is well recognised in the trusts and estates community, and lectures and writes on trusts-related subjects.

Heather Thompson "is well known to be a good private client and trusts lawyer," according to Bahamian interviewees. One source explains that "she accepts a lot of speaking engagements and she's well versed in the industry. She's a highly regarded lawyer." Thompson "has a strong reputation on the structuring and advisory side," and handles trust and company administration for individuals and corporate clients. Described as the "mainstay of the firm's private client section," Thompson has extensive experience with wills, probates, estate administration, foundations and private trust companies.

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Band 2

From the HNW guide

Lennox Paton's trust and foundations group represents individual clients and institutions, and provides sophisticated estate planning solutions. The firm has an international client base, with clients from Latin America and Europe, and increasingly from the Far East.

Lennox Paton is also noted for its "very strong litigation practice." The firm's litigators deal with trust disputes between beneficiaries and trust companies, and applications to update and amend trusts.

Notable practitioners

Brian Simms QC has an excellent reputation as a litigator in the Bahamas. He is a "very experienced, very capable" trusts litigation specialist, an interviewee notes. Simms is the firm's senior partner and heads its litigation group. Described as "very thorough," he represents trustees and beneficiaries, and has extensive experience with multi-jurisdictional cases.

Michael Paton handles non-contentious trusts work at Lennox Paton. He focuses on advisory work for private clients and trust companies. Described as "very experienced" and "very knowledgeable," he is a non-practising qualified CPA. Sources also highlight his speciality in investment funds matters.

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Band 2

McKinney, Bancroft & Hughes

From the HNW guide

McKinney, Bancroft & Hughes is one of the largest firms in the islands. The firm's trust and private client practice advises high net worth individuals and families on the creation and maintenance of offshore structures. Clients come from all over the world, including the USA, Canada, South America and Europe in particular, with a growing element of Asian work. The firm is best known in this space for its handling of trusts litigation matters.

Notable practitioners

Sources say Brian Moree QC is "a real standout, star-quality litigator" in the Bahamas who is "involved in many leading litigation cases." He has decades of experience and was formerly a Judge of the Supreme Court of the Bahamas. "Moree is a leading advocate of the Bahamas Bar," says an interviewee; "he's very skilful, articulate, aggressive and very wise." He has extensive experience in cross-border and international litigation cases.

John Wilson is a "well-recognised" practitioner on the island. He chairs the firm's private client and trusts group, handling both non-contentious and contentious private client work for individuals and families. He specialises in trusts disputes and commercial litigation.

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Philip C Dunkley QC

Higgs & Johnson

From the Chambers HNW guide

Philip Dunkley QC is a litigation specialist and is known as a "leading litigator on trusts." He also handles private wealth management matters.

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Graham Thompson

From the Chambers HNW guide

Sean McWeeney QC heads up the firm's private client, trusts and estates group, and has decades of experience in Bahamian trust law. He represents institutional clients, as well as high net worth individuals and families that have settled in the Bahamas. McWeeney is known for handling both contentious and non-contentious trust matters; his work includes the creation of structures and the resolution of family disputes. One source observes that McWeeney "has a very, very good reputation on the advice side."

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Band 1

McKinney, Bancroft & Hughes

From the Chambers HNW guide

Sources say Brian Moree QC is "a real standout, star-quality litigator" in the Bahamas who is "involved in many leading litigation cases." He has decades of experience and was formerly a Judge of the Supreme Court of the Bahamas. "Moree is a leading advocate of the Bahamas Bar," says an interviewee; "he's very skilful, articulate, aggressive and very wise." He has extensive experience in cross-border and international litigation cases.

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Band 1

Lennox Paton

From the Chambers HNW guide

Michael Paton handles non-contentious trusts work at Lennox Paton. He focuses on advisory work for private clients and trust companies. Described as "very experienced" and "very knowledgeable," he is a non-practising qualified CPA. Sources also highlight his speciality in investment funds matters.

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Lennox Paton

From the Chambers HNW guide

Brian Simms QC has an excellent reputation as a litigator in the Bahamas. He is a "very experienced, very capable" trusts litigation specialist, an interviewee notes. Simms is the firm's senior partner and heads its litigation group. Described as "very thorough," he represents trustees and beneficiaries, and has extensive experience with multi-jurisdictional cases.

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Band 2

Higgs & Johnson

From the Chambers HNW guide

Earl Cash chairs the firm's private client and wealth management group, and has "a good reputation on the island as a private client lawyer." He advises on the creation and ongoing administration of trusts, and is particularly known for his work with prominent trust companies in the Bahamas, acting as a "key adviser." Cash is well recognised in the trusts and estates community, and lectures and writes on trusts-related subjects.

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Band 2

Graham Thompson

From the Chambers HNW guide

Tanya Hanna has a recognised speciality in trusts law. Her clients include trust companies and private individuals, whom she advises on trust and corporate matters. Hanna also handles sophisticated estate planning for high net worth individuals and families, including will preparation, and the creation of foundations, trusts and private trust companies. She is "well recognised on structuring" within the community, and she takes an active role as a speaker and author on trusts-related matters.

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Band 2

Graham Thompson

From the Chambers HNW guide

Ryan Pinder was recently made a partner at Graham Thompson. He was formerly Bahamas Minister of Financial Services and Trade and has also worked in the banking industry. His practice focuses on planning for individuals and families, both internationally and domestically. Pinder handles trusts, structuring, estate planning and wealth management for his clients, as well as dealing with their various businesses and companies across the world. Recognised for the cross-border elements of his practice, Pinder works with Latin American and US clients in particular.

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Band 2

Heather L Thompson

Higgs & Johnson

From the Chambers HNW guide

Heather Thompson "is well known to be a good private client and trusts lawyer," according to Bahamian interviewees. One source explains that "she accepts a lot of speaking engagements and she's well versed in the industry. She's a highly regarded lawyer." Thompson "has a strong reputation on the structuring and advisory side," and handles trust and company administration for individuals and corporate clients. Described as the "mainstay of the firm's private client section," Thompson has extensive experience with wills, probates, estate administration, foundations and private trust companies.

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Band 2

McKinney, Bancroft & Hughes

From the Chambers HNW guide

John Wilson is a "well-recognised" practitioner on the island. He chairs the firm's private client and trusts group, handling both non-contentious and contentious private client work for individuals and families. He specialises in trusts disputes and commercial litigation.

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