Gray’s Inn Tax Chambers suffers fifth exit in three months after Devereux raid

Gray’s Inn Tax Chambers (GITC) has seen three silks walk out in the last three months, with Devereux becoming the latest to add a member from the set.

Felicity Cullen QC is to join Devereux, following the departures of GITC tax silks Philip Baker QC and Patrick Way QC who have resigned along with GITC barristers Patrick Soares and Imran Afzal.

GITC tax silks Baker and Way are to establish their own set, Field Court Tax Chambers, which will go live on 1 August. The new set will be headed by Soares, who formerly led 8 Gray’s Inn Square before joining GITC in 2001. 

Baker, who took silk in 2002, joined GITC in 1987 and has always practised at the set. Way, whose high-profile clients have included Andre Agassi and Richard and Judy, took silk in 2013.

Soares, who was called to the bar in 1983, has also brought Gray’s Inn junior Imran Afzal to the new chambers.

Cullen, became the first female silk in specialist tax chambers when she was awarded QC in 2008. She is the second barrister to join Devereux in under a year following the arrival of Jolyon Maugham in September last year from 11 New Square (17 September 2013).

GITC has been left with seven silks and ten juniors following the departures.

Devereux has also undergone a period of change kick-started by the loss of its first chief executive Beverly Landais last year, prompting talk of an administrative overhaul (2 October 2013).

Days after Landais’ exit, head of chambers Ingrid Simler QC was appointed as a High Court judge while Devereux elected new head Timothy Brennan QC to take over (7 October 2013).

Brennan cemented the chambers’ focus on contentious tax advice driven by a rise in the number of HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) investigations (16 October 2013).

Cullen will add to the set’s contentious tax practice. In recent years she has appeared in many important tax cases including RKW Limited v Commissioners for HMRC.