Areas of Expertise

Chris has over 40 years experience in commercial law and specialises in commercial agreements, as well as corporate and trust restructuring. He advises on using family discretionary trusts to protect assets and knows how to structure trusts to make sure rights and powers devolve - or pass effectively from one person to the next.

Chris’s long standing client base turns to him for both corporate and commercial law advice. He’s particularly skilled at working out how to rectify defective trusts so that they can continue to be used. To make sure his clients’ receive accounting advice that complements his legal advice, he also has strong relations with several leading accounting firms.

 

What Chris’s clients say

“Thank you Chris for taking the time both to create this trust structure for my businesses, and for explaining it to me in commercial terms which were readily understandable to me. I greatly appreciated that.“

 

Qualifications/Memberships

  • Bachelor of Arts (Sydney University)

  • Bachelor of Laws (Sydney University)

  • Member of Law Society of NSW (Fidelity Fund Committee)

 

A word from Chris

"One unique characteristic of practising in the corporate/commercial arena is the need to see legal problems through a commercial perspective. Very often clients need to make a quick decision about commercial opportunities. That decision will commonly involve considering a range of legal issues. The consequence is that the lawyer must give clear, correct legal advice in a very short time frame. Practising in these circumstances can be stressful, particularly when the client is anxious for what he/she sees as a potentially lucrative deal to proceed. Good lawyers however tend to thrive on stress, and tend to find such practice stimulating. From expressions of appreciation made to me by clients, I believe that we are satisfying the dual requirements of quality and speed in the legal services we are providing to our commercial clients."

 

Career Highlights

  • Managing a complex negotiation for the $200m sale of a private interest in a company and drafting the security documents for vendor finance.

  • Carrying out a major due diligence on an Australian group listing on London’s AIM market.

  • Acting on the restructure of an Australian petroleum company and the sale of a minority share in its business.

  • Acting on the sale of an Australian manufacturing business, which included complicated land contamination and remediation issues.

  • Acting on the restructure of an Australian company with joint ventures in Singapore, China, Malaysia, Vietnam and Saudi Arabia.

 

Specific areas of focus

  • Compliance and governance advice, director’s duties, shareholder relations, structuring advice and corporate reorganisation.

  • Mergers and acquisitions and sale of businesses and companies.

  • Commercial agreements.

  • Trusts, including advising on existing trusts and trustee powers and creating new family trusts.

  • Business and family succession planning.

  • TGA compliance.