Strategy and tactical advice

Creating and executing legal strategies that lead to positive change, whether in a contentious or non contentious situation, relies on three main steps: idea creation, planning and development, and execution.

 

Charles Mia provides the services of senior, seasoned professionals whose skills and abilities are often put to work for clients at the front end of the creative process, rather than simply in the execution phase. Our clients value our strategic and tactical abilities, and our problem solving skills, brainstorming with us around existing or potential problems to address or head off issues and to forge a clear path through effective legal risk and change management.

Personal and family wealth

We help our clients to address the challenges specific to them and their lives presented by wealth, whether large or small, simple or complex:

  • domestic and multi-jurisdictional expertise

  • domicile, residence, UK and international tax management

  • estate and succession planning

  • lifetime wealth transfer strategies

  • tax efficient investment strategies

  • planning for school fees and provision for children generally

  • ownership strategies for real estate

  • ownership strategies for art and antiques

  • ownership strategies for car collections

Through Charles Mia Private Office, we also combine the more traditional legal and tax expertise with administrative and management services, providing additional support to families with busy and complicated lives.

 

Wills and estates

  • advising on and drafting provisions for inclusion in Wills and letters of wishes

  • preparing Powers of Attorney

  • preparing Lasting Powers of Attorney

  • tax advice and probate administration

Trusts and structures

  • advising on the legitimate uses of trusts, companies, 
    partnerships, charities and foundations

  • advising on the behaviour and applications of such structures and entities

  • drafting and advising on structure and restructuring documentation, whether in connection with set-up, or changes post set-up, distributions to beneficiaries, reorganisation or winding up

  • advising on taxation of trusts and other structures, and those connected with them

 

Charities and philanthropy

  • advising on strategies for philanthropy

  • regulated and unregulated charities

  • private philanthropic foundations

Collections

We advise galleries and dealers, as well as collectors and their estates, in relation to fine art and collectible assets such as vintage cars and watches, having acted in relation to some of the world’s most prominent transactions. Our work includes:

  • domestic and cross border transactions

  • determining the legal owner with title to sell

  • preparing and negotiating consignment agreements and sale contracts

  • dealing with issues such as VAT, provenance, insurance, secured lending and registration

  • managing the execution of transactions, ensuring that title passes

 

Commercial and contractual arrangements

We advise in relation to a diverse range of commercial and contractual arrangements and transactions for clients, whether acquisitions, investments, disposals or to provide advice on the structuring of high value activities, and in each case to negotiate and prepare the required documentation. In this we work both domestically and internationally, supporting our clients wherever they may be active:

  • business, shareholding and asset acquisitions and disposals

  • joint ventures, shareholder and partnership agreements

  • advising on and setting up companies, partnerships and co-investment arrangements

  • choosing the most appropriate vehicle and jurisdiction for your business

  • structuring relationships between investors and the business

  • advising on how to protect intellectual property in your ideas and business

  • determining where value should rest, before it is realised

  • advising on control mechanisms for your business

  • agency, distribution, licensing and marketing agreements

  • contractual advice, negotiation and drafting

Employees, consultants and directors

We advise across the board in relation to:

  • negotiation and drafting of employment contracts

  • drafting consultancy contracts and directors’ service contracts

  • advising on the tax treatment of employment for both employers and employees

  • advising on liability insurance

  • representing employers and employees in redundancy

 

Direct investments

We provide a mix of advice in relation to the structuring and creation of international investment vehicles, whether single purpose vehicles or investment funds and whether organised in the relevant jurisdiction as unit trusts, limited partnerships, companies or contractual joint ventures.

These vehicles are legitimate vehicles organised for sound commercial reasons within the law and fully tax compliant.

Such vehicles are typically required to bring together a small number of investors to invest in high value private equity, real 

estate or single asset class investments (such as art or car collections).

Tax and regulatory compliance

We advise on tax and regulatory compliance for private individuals in relation to their personal affairs and for trusts and other structures in relation to their activities and the interests of beneficiaries.

We help clients answer to requests for information from HMRC, as well as to represent clients in the face of tax enquiries and investigations from HMRC.

We handle tax treaty and ongoing regulatory and compliance initiatives affecting our clients and their activities domestically and internationally. We are experienced in advising on how to cope with the burden of regulatory compliance, including the wave of disclosure requirements of recent times, including:

  • FATCA

  • Common Reporting Standards

  • UK Swiss disclosure regulations

  • PSC Register

 
 

Trustees and corporate service providers - Non-contentious

We specialise in providing clear, solution orientated, independent and pragmatic advice to offshore and onshore trustees serving high net worth individuals and families with multi-jurisdictional issues arising from the nature and location of trust assets, the location of settlors, beneficiaries and protectors and the evolution of international regulation.

  • use of trust and foundations

  • use of private trust companies

  • advising trustees on trust administration issues

  • interpretation of trust and trust law issues

  • advising on beneficiary rights to information

  • advising on trustees’ duties and exercise of powers in any given situation

  • advising on directors’ duties

  • helping trustees to diffuse tension with beneficiaries

  • advising on taxation of trust, corporate and foundation structures

  • due diligence on acquisition of trust and CSP businesses

Trustees and corporate service providers - Contentious

The families that we, and our trustee clients, serve often have interests around the world. The key to successful planning for them lies in identifying where claims might be made, and which law courts will apply, as it does on the detail of the relevant law.

 

However, many families, whatever their internal differences, prefer a more private way to resolve their disputes, as do most trustees. Mediation of such disputes is an area in which we have considerable experience and offer a pragmatic solution oriented approach.

  • risk audits and risk assessments

  • advising on proper exercise of trustees’ powers and discretion and in relation to commercial dealings with trust assets

  • dealing with requests for information from beneficiaries or third parties with possible hostile intentions

  • how to handle conflicts between trustees and beneficiaries in a constructive manner

  • how to avoid litigation and settle conflicts via negotiation

  • how to handle retirement or removal of trustees effectively

  • representation in disputes with settlors, beneficiaries, protectors or third parties, whether involving mediation, arbitration or litigation

 

Dispute resolution and litigation

We work for clients to develop and implement effective strategies for the resolution of disputes, but we are also equipped to prosecute or defend claims through the courts where necessary. Our work includes:

  • trust disputes of all kinds

  • property disputes

  • commercial and contractual disputes of all kinds

  • shareholder, partnership and joint venture disputes

  • investment disputes

  • employment disputes

  • defamation disputes

  • commodities disputes

Family law

Our family law practice is second to none, advising on separation, divorce, financial settlements and child custody. Our work for our clients includes:

  • representing clients going through divorce

  • acting for and against mid and high net worth individuals on the financial implications of divorce and separation

  • negotiation of financial settlements, often complex and multijurisdictional in nature including in respect to tax and trust matters

  • renegotiating financial settlements and challenging previous consent orders, separation agreements and pre or post nuptial agreements

  • we seek to bring negotiations to a sensible conclusion quickly so that individuals can move on with their lives, and to protect the wider interests of the family

 

Commodities and trading

We have developed a niche practice through client led work, advising soft

commodities traders on terms and financing of cross border trading, and

handling disputes connected with default and unwind of trades.

Immigration

With increasing numbers of families seeking to relocate to the United Kingdom, we have been particularly active advising individuals on:

  • international relocation

  • immigration law and visa applications

  • citizenship and residency programmes

 

Intellectual property

We act for a number of well-known individuals who have successfully developed brand businesses on the back of their celebrity, as well as commercial ventures looking to protect their intellectual property, and our work in this area includes:

  • trademarks and protection of rights

  • exploitation of image rights through brand licensing and joint ventures for well known individuals in sport and fashion

© CHARLES MIA LIMITED 2019