James Brightwell


Year of Call: 2000

Very measured and very bright, you are reassured when you know he is on your side. He is very user-friendly and can turn around advice quickly when required.” “Always sees the bigger picture and really gains the trust and confidence of clients.

Chambers & Partners, 2019

Practice Overview

James is top ranked by Chambers Global for his trusts and offshore work: "he is quick and clever and he understands everything. You can count on him to do exactly what he says he will", he has "strong tactical nous" and "marvellous attention to detail."  Much of his work is offshore and almost all of it has an international aspect. He has particular experience of litigation in Jersey and Guernsey.

A co-author of the 19th edition of Lewin on Trusts, James is recognised as an expert in trusts law and is described in Legal 500 as a "hardworking and enthusiastic trust specialist".  He has acted in Jersey as an expert witness in English trust law.  He is particularly sought after for advice on novel questions where the case law does not directly assist.

News & Events

  • News

    The Lawyer recognises four cases involving Serle Court members in its ‘Top 20 Cases of 2019’

    Today The Lawyer revealed its Top 20 Cases of 2019.  The write-up notes that four members of Serle Court are instructed... Read More

    News

    International Trusts and Commercial Litigation Conference 2018

    “…thank you Serle Court for another interesting conference - informative and enjoyable - a great combination!” On... Read More

  • Events

    Serle Court International Trusts and Commercial Litigation Conference in New York

    Location: InterContinental New York Barclay Hotel, 111 East, 48th Street, New York 10017 Read More

    Events

    Trusts and Commercial Litigation Conference - Jersey

    Location: The Royal Yacht Hotel, Jersey Read More

  • Technically excellent and has an encyclopaedic knowledge of trust law. He can think outside the box and you can rely on him totally.” “Extremely user-friendly and flexible.” “He is as knowledgeable as anyone on English trusts law, and has an instinctive feel for how trust cases will go.”

    Chambers Global, 2019
  • Very thoughtful and measured in his advice, which gives him a consistency solicitors can rely on.”

    Legal 500, 2019

Education & Qualifications

1995-1998 B.A. Emmanuel College Cambridge (1st class) (placed 2nd in year)

1998-1999 LL.M. Emmanuel College, Cambridge (1st class) (starred 1st in tax)

1998-1999 British Academy Studentship

1999-2000 Bar Vocational Course (Inns of Court School of Law)

Appointments

Deputy District Judge (Northern Circuit)

Memberships

Chancery Bar Association

Association of Contentious Trust and Probate Specialists

Languages

French (competency); Italian (basic); Spanish (basic)

BSB Registration

James Robert Brightwell

VAT Number

778 692 066

Awards

1999-2000 Hardwicke Scholarship; Thomas More Bursary (Lincoln’s Inn)

1998 Cambridge University George Long Prize for Jurisprudence

In the Press

Byline "Court Asserts How Jersey Law Applies in Trust Cases" Wealth Briefing with Kathryn Purkis, 25 April 2018

News & Events

  • News

    The Lawyer recognises four cases involving Serle Court members in its ‘Top 20 Cases of 2019’

    Today The Lawyer revealed its Top 20 Cases of 2019.  The write-up notes that four members of Serle Court are instructed... Read More

    News

    International Trusts and Commercial Litigation Conference 2018

    “…thank you Serle Court for another interesting conference - informative and enjoyable - a great combination!” On... Read More

  • Events

    Serle Court International Trusts and Commercial Litigation Conference in New York

    Location: InterContinental New York Barclay Hotel, 111 East, 48th Street, New York 10017 Read More

    Events

    Trusts and Commercial Litigation Conference - Jersey

    Location: The Royal Yacht Hotel, Jersey Read More