Birmingham law firm HBJ Gateley Wareing is taking its pensions advice on tour to help out companies struggling to deal with a complex field made more difficult by the financial downturn.
HBJ Gateley Wareing’s Birmingham-based pensions team is one of the largest in the Midlands, with five members. Alongside senior partner Michael Ward and solicitor Emma Lessard, the firm recently added pensions experts Michael Collins and Mario Conti as partners in the pensions team.
The pensions team will be touring around the Midlands over the coming year to help both existing and potential clients get to grips with the rapidly-changing world of pensions through a series of briefings, workshops and seminars which will cover current pension issues.
Pensions have become a thorny issue in recent months as tensions rise between trustees and companies. Many firms are struggling to fund their pension pots because of the pressure on margins caused by the global financial troubles.
Members of the HBJ team will also be spending regular days working from the firm’s Nottingham and Leicester offices to deal with clients in the East Midlands.
Mr Collins joined the firm from the Birmingham office of Wragge & Co, and has ten years experience in advising trustees, employers, financial institutions and investors on all aspects of pensions law. He is actively involved at both a local and national level with the National Association of Pension Funds, and other industry bodies. He is a committee member of the National Association of Pension Funds West Midlands Group.
Commenting on his appointment Michael Collins said: “I am delighted to have joined HBJ Gateley Wareing’s pensions team at such an exciting time.
“The firm’s ambition to expand the team and develop pensions as a key practice area meant that this was too good an opportunity for me to turn down.
“Both Mario and I are looking forward to the challenges ahead.”
Mario Conti joined from the Birmingham office of Martineau, where he headed up the pensions practice. He has over 25 years specialist experience in the sector and has extensive regulatory knowledge.
At HBJ Gateley Wareing he is responsible for providing advice to corporate clients and pension scheme trustees on all aspects of pension scheme management, including drafting trust deeds and rules, mergers, winding up pension schemes and liaising with the Pensions Regulator on corporate restructuring issues.
He said: “I am pleased to have the opportunity to join an expanding pensions team and working closely with one of the most prestigious corporate teams in the Midlands.”
Welcoming them to the firm, HBJ Gateley Wareing senior partner Michael Ward said: “Their expertise will prove invaluable to our clients seeking advice on effective pension scheme management.”