Andrew is a Partner in our Commercial Litigation Team and widely recognised as one of the South West's leading dispute lawyers - he is also an ADR accredited mediator. His work principally focuses on commercial contract disputes particularly those relating to franchising, distribution, agency and the supply of goods and services. He also has significant experience of injunctory proceedings including freezing, restraint of trade and search orders.
"My experience gained running a business before I became a lawyer, stands me in good stead for my work as a Commercial Litigator. If you just look at the legal question in isolation, you're doing your client a disservice; you need to put that legal question into the context of the overall business."
"An example might be where your client has, with good reason, entered into dispute with its main supplier - the focus is already on the legal issues, but as an advisor you've got to look at the bigger picture. What if it spoils its relationship with its principle supplier? Where can it get alternate product from? It might be more expensive elsewhere and that other supplier may be less reliable. So there can be good reasons to 'pull your punches' - it amazes me how many lawyers don't grasp that bigger picture. The key difference between Ashfords and many other law firms I've dealt with is that commercial awareness, there is a much better understanding of business issues and I believe that sets us apart."
"The hardest thing litigators and clients are faced with is dealing with litigation in a cost-effective way. It becomes very expensive to pursue points to Court and run disputes 'on principle', which clients often want to do when they start. You've got to come back and understand what the client is seeking to achieve. You should ask the client, "Where do you want to be? What do you want to achieve?" Begin with the solution and work back from there… It's about building and protecting your clients' business."