Halliwell Landau's London office has created its own executive committee and taken on Manchester firm Elliotts' head of insurance litigation John Groome as an equity partner
Clive Garston, the firm's former senior partner, has been named senior partner of the London office. Halliwells managing partner Paul Thomas is also on the executive along with London partners Julian Lewis and David Grant. The London office now has six partners in total. According to Garston, the executive committee will focus on "London-specific issues such as junior hires". Groome, though, the new partner for London, was voted in by the whole firm because he is coming straight into the firm's equity. Halliwells has not voted a partner straight into the equity since Stuart Harper joined from Lace Mawer six years ago. Groome was at Elliotts for over 20 years, and Halliwells managing partner Paul Thomas explained that the firm was admitting Groome straight into the equity as a result of his seniority. "We normally have an initial period of salaried partnership with lateral hires, but John was one of the most senior partners at Elliotts and the decision reflects this," said Thomas. Groome's practice is based in London and Manchester, so his move to Halliwells' London office will not affect his client relationships, added Thomas. Halliwells now has six insurance litigation partners. In December, the department acted for some of the successful defendants in the Appeal Court ruling that asbestos poisoning claimants were not entitled to compensation. The case, referred to as the 'Fairchild ruling', is going to the House of Lords.