The Inside Story

"I was also looking for a greater degree of autonomy over my career."

These are very exciting times for our Dispute Resolution Group. In line with the firm's wider objectives, we have implemented a long-term strategy aimed at providing a predominantly commercial client base with specialist advice on high value and complex litigation matters.  We already act for an impressive array of national and international businesses and continue to work alongside the other teams at the firm to ensure that we can offer our clients an excellent service across the full range of their legal needs.

The group is headed up by Steven Richards who joined us three years ago from a global US firm in London. Steven already had over 12 years’ experience of High Court litigation cases under his belt and brought with him a wealth of experience in this practice area to the firm.

Steven explains why he made the move to Devon: “It was time to try something different. I was working with great lawyers and on great cases but the size of the firm meant that I was far removed from the running of the business itself. I still wanted quality legal work but was also looking for a greater degree of autonomy over my career and a substantive involvement in the development of the firm. This is exactly what Foot Anstey offered me. I have to say that I had a lot of preconceptions about a law firm in the Southwest but these were quickly dispelled.

Even on my first visit, I could tell that the firm was something different. Not only did the office in Plymouth have world class views over the marina and out to sea but it was immediately apparent that all of the staff were open, honest and, most importantly, really passionate about the firm and where it is going. Since joining, I haven’t looked back. There’s a subtle but important difference here in that my office and home life thrive side by side. I don’t feel like I’m missing out on my family time or on the quality of the work. It hasn’t been a difficult transition at all and my only regret is that I didn't make the move earlier!”

Nick Loewendahl, an Associate in the Dispute Resolution Group, explains why he enjoys working at the firm. “I had several offers when it came to choosing my training contract and, while I wanted to stay in the South West and enjoy the quality of life here, I presumed by doing so that I would have to compromise to a degree in terms of the quality of the work. However, I realised quickly that this concern was unfounded and that the disputes group was undertaking a number of complex, stimulating and often high profile cases. And because the firm is growing progressively, there are lots of opportunities for me to develop my career. There’s genuinely no other firm I’d rather work for.”

Looking forward, Steven believes that at the heart of the group's growth strategy is the ability to continue developing and recruiting good lawyers. “People are our most critical asset. We’re only as good as the lawyers we retain and we are really proud of our ability to train and attract first class practitioners in this field."