Banks get benefit of firm's support

Hammond Suddards has launched a national bank recovery unit offering a wide range of advice and support to banks involved in litigation with borrowers.

The unit will be headed by the firm's London-based partner Ian Searle and senior solicitor Adam Plainer.

Plainer said: “Our aim is to bring focus and additional resources to an already important part of our work. We will advise banks in every situation where they seek to recover loans where borrowers default.

“Borrowers are largely companies, but private individuals are involved as well.”

The unit will also advise on handling influential clients such as TV personalities or barristers who threaten to enlist the help of the Press when disputes occur with bank managers.

“We can offer public relations assistance as well as practical support in these cases,” said Plainer.

The unit will also handle advice on company reconstructions after businesses run into trouble.

Searle said: “There is a growing demand by banking clients for their work to be dealt with by a smaller number of more experienced solicitors attuned to their needs.

“The new unit will enable practical, cost-effective and prompt legal advice to be delivered by experienced solicitors who practise in this area of work full-time.”

The unit, which Hammond Suddards believes is the first of its kind in the UK, has already taken on 15 lawyers.

A further five lawyers may be recruited by the middle of next year to further expand the operation.