Divorce boom sees Manches add eight

Manches has ramped up its family practice in response to a rush of enquiries following the economic slump.

The firm has hired eight associates in the last month, raising its fee-earning capacity from 34 to 41.

Family partner James Stewart said the department was now the “largest family practice in England”.

“It’s a terrible financial climate,” said Stewart. “But it’s a brilliant climate for family lawyers.”

Last week The Lawyer revealed that leading family lawyers had seen a significant increase in enquiries as the economy slowed (The Lawyer, 22 September).
Half of the eight new recruits at Manches completed their training contracts with the firm, while the rest were hired from other firms.

The new hires include former Charles ­Russell associate Amy Taylor and Fisher Meredith senior associate Simon Blaine.

The family practice is not the only Manches department to have benefited from the current financial crisis. A boom in wealth-management queries has prompted the firm to hire senior ­associate Emma Sparshott from offshore law firm Harneys.

Stewart added: “Dual-qualified lawyers are particularly valuable in a climate where we’re seeing a marked increase in cases with an international dimension.”