Midlands firm Gateley Wareing has poached Pinsent Curtis partner David Williams to lead its corporate team in Leicester.
Williams, formerly a private equity partner at Pinsents' Leeds office, is the fifth partner to leave the national firm in four months.
Williams will be joined by two associates from Gateleys' Birmingham office in the firm's revamped corporate department in Leicester.
The new team is charged with drumming up business in the region, rather than acting as a satellite office for the Birmingham centre.
Williams joined Pinsents from Leicester firm Harvey Ingram Owston in 1998.
Gateleys' senior partner, Brendan McGeever says: "Gateley Wareing is gearing up for corporate work from the East Midlands, with both out Leicester and Birmingham offices seeing an increase in the number and size of transactions we advise on. David is the ideal candidate to raise our profile."
A Pinsents' spokeswoman says: "David came to us from a small Midlands firm in Leicester in January 1998. Our parting is perfectly amicable and I think he has gone back to where he feels he belongs.