Olswang for Hammonds" />High-profile property lawyer Michael Cassidy has switched to Hammonds, just five months after the shock demise of DJ Freeman saw him join Olswang.
The move will see Cassidy return to fee-earning, joining the national firm as a non-equity partner. His roles at both DJ Freeman and Olswang have been as a consultant.
Cassidy stressed that the departure from Olswang had been amicable, but he wanted to return to a fee-earning role. "I'm quite content to be back at the coal face," he said.
Cassidy is a non-executive director of both British Land and UBS Warburg, and non-executive chairman of Hemingway Property Group.
He was instrumental in introducing both British Land and Land Securities to Maxwell Batley, where he previously held the position of senior partner.
Along with Land Securities, Cassidy is most well known for his work with Hermes. Because of restrictive covenants, it is understood that he is still unable to approach Hermes until next year, but it seems likely that both will be targets for Cassidy when he returns to fee-earning.
The appointment underlines the national firm's strategy of growing its real estate practice. "We want to increase our growing institutional practice and reputation with property companies," said Jonathan Morshead, who manages the institutional property group in London.
Last month the firm was joined by Eversheds' head of property tax Robert Jones, and last year it took on Paul Groobey from Addleshaw Goddard to head the property finance group.