Our team of specialised accountants and tax advisers are here to help you realise your potential and develop new opportunities for your law firm.

Law firms large and small, across the UK, can benefit from our unrivalled legal sector knowledge.

Understanding you

The legal market is changing. There has been an increase in practice mergers and acquisitions, virtual law firms are becoming a reality and technology developments are changing the way lawyers work. We can help you take advantage of the opportunities this presents for law firms and ensure you stay ahead of the game.

Established 30 years ago, our dedicated legal team has an understanding of every type of firm - we work with lawyers all day, every day. Whenever you seek our advice, you can be sure that it will always be expert, relevant and up to date.

Helping you achieve your goals

Are you looking for a comprehensive answer to:

  • What is my law firm worth?
  • How can I increase the value of my business?
  • What if I want to retire in 5 or 10 years' time?
  • What will we need to borrow to pay a retiring partner?
  • What capital should new equity partners contribute?
  • How much should we pay to acquire another law firm?
  • How do I start my own practice? 

Have you read The Law Society's Leadership and Management Section Financial Benchmarking Survey 2023?

The survey is widely regarded as one of the leading annual health check reports for mid-sized practices.

View the full survey

What makes us different

  • The Law Society’s LMS Financial Benchmarking Survey author since 2009.
  • First accountancy practice to join the Law Management Section of the Law Society.
  • Author of CCH's book entitled ‘Solicitors and Legal Services: An Industry Accounting and Auditing Guide’.
  • Retained by over 200 legal practices (nationwide) and their owners personally.
  • Active speakers at national legal sector events.
  • Regular contributors to the legal press.
  • Expert judges at the Law Society’s Excellence Awards in 2019 and 2020.
  • Advised over 100 practices on their conversion to LLP, limited company or hybrid structure.
  • Knowledge of the Private Equity houses that are interested in pursuing the legal sector.
  • On-site training on the SRA Accounts Rules, role of the COFA, becoming a future partner, etc.
  • Training courses for legal cashiers and accounts staff, in varying locations around the country.

Working together

We work with a number of organisations and groups to ensure we can provide you with the most up to date business advice and support for you and your law firm.

Current chair and members of the ICAEW's Solicitors Advisory Group for the last 15 years.

ILFM Executive Council members since 2014. 

Founding partner of Law Firm Ambition, a central resource for law firms. 

Members of the Association of Law Firm Merger Advisers.

Legal Focus            

Read the latest editions of our Legal Focus.

Read more

 Case studies

Background: During the COVID-19 pandemic many people have been required to work from home.  HMRC relaxed the conditions and made it easier for employees to be able to claim the use of home as office allowance of £6 per week.  Whilst this is welcome news, in real terms it is just £1.20 per week for basic rate taxpayers.

How we helped: As well as ensuring that everyone who qualifies makes the claim, we have also been reviewing clients affairs to see whether it is possible for them to make a larger claim, to reflect the actual expenses they have incurred. Using a spreadsheet model we created, we can calculate the claim for self-employed persons, based on their monthly outgoings.  Self-employed persons can make a claim for use of home based on their actual expenses whereas employees, as mentioned above, can only claim the £6 per week.  

For directors of personal companies, we have been looking at using the above basis to make a claim in the company’s accounts by charging rent from the director/home owner.  This is slightly more involved but it can result in a more representative claim for costs incurred when working from home. 

Background: The owners of a practice, who were considering the firm’s succession plan, wanted to know the value of the business and the options available for passing on the reigns, including possible third party sales.

How we helped: We started by reviewing the firm’s financial details to help the owners understand the value of the practice based upon our detailed knowledge of the sector and the current merger and acquisition activity that we are seeing. We compared this to offers from third parties to assess their merits. We then looked at the firm’s succession options internally and how they might play out both from a financial point of view and in shaping the firm going forward. This enabled the owners to take a more rounded view of the firm’s succession and devise a plan that worked best for the business going forward.

Background: A shareholder wished to retire from the practice and negotiations were underway for the company to purchase his shares. The tax implications had not been fully considered and the practice wanted to ensure the best outcome for the shareholder.

How we helped: We explained the conditions to be met for the shareholder to benefit from capital treatment, i.e. for the payment from the company to be subject to capital gains tax rather than income tax, and the type of deal that would be likely to be given approval by HMRC. We also considered whether business asset disposal relief would apply to secure a 10% tax rate. We helped the practice shape the deal to arrive at a point where the company and the shareholder were happy with the terms and HMRC gave approval for capital treatment.

Background: The owners of a successful practice were concerned about the operational risk to which the company’s assets were exposed.

How we helped: We advised on the introduction of a holding company into the ownership structure, into which the assets could be transferred and held separately from the trade. We dealt with the HMRC clearance application to ensure there were no adverse tax implications for the company or the owners and dealt with all company secretarial matters required to form the holding company, execute the exchange of shareholdings and file the necessary paperwork with HMRC and Companies House.

Background: The cash requirement for additional funding has been essential for a number of law firms over the past year. In the most part this has been for a safety blanket due to the unpredictability of the pandemic. But for some this additional funding has essential and ensured businesses can continue.  

How we helped: Firms have been unable to accurately show how the pandemic might affect them and so we have prepared detailed forecasts to incorporate all business expenses and owners’ remuneration, showing a number of difference scenarios.

This helps to give strong evidence that funding is required for the benefit of the business but also gives confidence that the business will improve its position had funding not been secured.

Background: We are often approached by taxpayers who are looking at getting their tax affairs in order. Over the years HMRC have issued various disclosure facilities to enable taxpayers to do this without punitive penalties. This can be a big worry for people, whether they have received communication from HMRC or not. Generally, we find that people want to pay their share of tax and ultimately be able to sleep at night.  

How we helped: We prepared and submitted disclosures to HMRC and advised taxpayers of the amount to pay. After getting the taxpayers affairs in order some have no further need of our services, but many stay on as clients and we help them to keep up to date with their compliance requirements.

We are also able to advise clients on ways to structure their tax affairs and mitigate their tax liabilities going forward.

Featured news

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"Because they specialised in working with firms in our industry they knew the issues that we were facing as a business and they knew how they could help us, that was the major contributing factor to us going with them"

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"Hazlewoods have got inside detail of what’s going on in my world, which is very helpful"

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"Hazlewoods niche expertise with firms in our industry sets them apart from all the others"

Testimonial from Anonymous

"We were all very impressed with the audit work. [The auditors] were extremely professional and polite, having worked with many auditors and as an auditor myself in the past, they were genuinely exceptional in comparison to others I’ve worked with. We really appreciated the detail of the work you carried out and your helpfulness in answering various SRA related queries. The issues highlighted will definitely help us tighten things up as a business going forwards and will help us revise our…"

Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Jon Cartwright
Jon Cartwright
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Patricia Kinahan
Patricia Kinahan
Partner, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Andy Harris
Andy Harris
Partner, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Ian Johnson
Ian Johnson
Partner, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Mike Ingmire
Mike Ingmire
Tax Director, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Jenny Staight
Jenny Staight
Director, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Gill Kempster
Gill Kempster
Associate Tax Director, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Ellen Capewell
Ellen Capewell
Associate Director, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Faye Warren
Faye Warren
Associate Director, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Jack Hayman
Jack Hayman
Associate Director, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Hayley Dickinson
Hayley Dickinson
Associate Director, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Maria Curtis
Maria Curtis
Senior Manager, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Karl Millward
Karl Millward
Senior Tax Manager, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Cheryl Thomas
Cheryl Thomas
Tax Manager, Legal
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Kurt Lawrence
Kurt Lawrence
Tax Manager
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Content image: /uploads/team/unknown.jpg Luke Dickinson
Luke Dickinson
Associate Manager
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