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Nikki Singla QC

Call: 2000    QC: 2018

+44 (0)20 7306

Trusts, Tax, Probate & Estates

“Incredibly commercial with clients and speaks their language. He gets the balance right between impressing clients, working with solicitors, and understanding the commercial realities of day-to-day business.” Chambers & Partners

His drafting skills are top notch and his knowledge of trusts and offshore litigation is second to none.’ The Legal 500

The majority of his work offshore concerns trust litigation and litigation concerning corporate and fiduciary services providers. He has acted in a number of high profile trust and corporate disputes, and has appeared as advocate in the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands and before the Chief Justice of Bermuda and in the courts of Mauritius. A substantial amount of his offshore practice is in the Channel Islands. His particular value to this area of his practice is his expertise in commercial litigation and witness actions. Many of his cases concern hostile family disputes or divorce where substantial wealth is held in offshore structures.

His recent trusts cases include:

  • In the matter of a Trust (Mauritius): appeared in the High Court in Mauritius to set aside a substantial settlement for mistake.
  • In the matter of a Trust (Supreme Court of Bermuda): Acting for a class of beneficiaries in contested Beddoe proceedings objecting to the decision of trustees to enter into a highly leveraged acquisition of shares for several million dollars based on expert valuations and projections based on the price of oil.
  • In the Matter of the B Settlements (Ch Div): Acting for trustees of three settlements who, it has been discovered, did not retire effectively as trustees and their intended replacements had not been properly appointed. Court applications made to rectify the trusts including reclaiming the trust assets and commencing litigation against the solicitors’ firm who drafted the retirement/appointment deeds negligently.
  • In the Matter of a Trust (Bermuda): Acted for a member of one of the wealthiest Canadian families in the trial of a dispute between him and his father over the application of trust provisions in a complex Bermudian trust and corporate structure. Case was one of the first to consider the application of trust “jurisdiction” clauses.
  • In the Matter of the H Trust (Jersey): Acted for a corporate fiduciary services provider defending beneficiary claims against several defendants for over £30million for alleged fraudulent and negligent investment advice. Allegations made against well-known accountant and adviser for fraud and breach of trust which led to criminal proceedings.
  • In the Matter of a Company (Guernsey): Acted for the defendant corporate fiduciary services provider and director defendants with local leading advocates in the defence of breach of trust proceedings and alleged negligence in respect of investment policy for approximately £10million. Case required consideration of the duties of non-executive directors and offshore corporate services providers.
  • Re R Solicitors (Ch Div): Acted for a former client of a solicitors’ firm in its claim for breach of trust and fraud in the conduct of managing the probate and distribution of a very substantial estate. Beddoe relief sought to pursue the solicitors concerned and compensation sought from the SRA’s compensation fund.
  • In the Matter of the B Family Settlements (Bermuda): Acted for the beneficiary of large Settlements established in Bermuda in his claim against corporate trustees for preferring the interests of another member of the family, a well-known and successful businessman, over his own. Breach of trust proceedings in Bermuda.
  • In the Matter of the H Trusts (Bahamas): Acting for individual and corporate trustees seeking to retire as trustees from large family settlements set up by a well-known English tycoon. Claims brought by rival beneficiaries have prevented the provision of proper and suitable indemnities and security for the trustees.