Reflections on my first seat: Asset Protection

As the conclusion of the first seat of my training contract approaches, I reflect on the past six months that I have spent as a Trainee in Asset Protection at Michelmores.

If you are a prospective or future trainee, I hope this article gives you useful insight into the role of the Asset Protection Trainee.

Split seat

The Asset Protection Trainee works with both the Family and the Tax, Trust and Succession (TTS) teams within the Private Client department to help provide a seamless service to our Private Wealth clients.

Not only has this given me the opportunity to work with many individuals across the business, but the work has also been incredibly varied and I have learnt the important skill of being flexible to adapt to each team’s best practice and procedures.

The Asset Protection seat is also a testament to the firm’s collaborative approach to providing client service. Often private wealth matters require a collective approach not only across the Family and TTS teams but also with our real estate and business colleagues. It is important to benefit from expertise from across the firm to ensure that we are providing well-rounded and holistic advice to our clients.

To learn more about the Family team from a trainee perspective, please read trainee Milli’s blog here: An Insight into the Family team at Michelmores – for prospective Trainee Solicitors and Paralegals | Michelmores

To find out more about the work of the TTS team, please read here: Tax, Trusts & Succession | Michelmores

Typical work

The nature of the split seat means that the work is wide reaching. We work with entrepreneurs, business owners, generational clients and High Net Worth individuals, advising on methods to protect their assets, inheritance or accumulated wealth and to mitigate the financial impacts of divorce, separation or death.

A flavour of the type of work I do in this seat:

  • Attending client meetings and taking attendance notes;
  • Gathering information from the client on their circumstances, concerns, aims and the assets they wish to protect;
  • Drafting prenuptial and postnuptial agreements to provide for a fair division of assets and finances in the event of divorce;
  • Drafting cohabitation agreements to set out how cohabitants intend to divide their finances during cohabitation and on separation with a view to protecting unmarried clients’ interests in property;
  • Researching various matters of family, trusts or tax law and providing case summaries (including retained EU law);
  • Analysing tax implications of disposals of assets and the creation of trusts;
  • Assisting with advising international clients and clients with assets in other jurisdictions;
  • Drafting Wills, Letters of Wishes, Living Wills and Lasting Powers of Attorney;
  • Drafting Trust Deeds, Deeds of Gift and Personal Loan Agreements to protect assets across generations; and
  • Conducting Land Registry and Companies House searches to investigate assets.

Although the majority of my work has been non-contentious, I have also had the opportunity to assist on contentious family matters, such as drafting separation agreements, compiling an exhibit of evidence for Children Act Proceedings, advising on protecting family assets on divorce and weighing up tax implications of various property orders when making offers to opponents within financial proceedings for the benefit of children.

At Michelmores, you also have the opportunity to experience a full seat in Family or TTS. This is encouraged if Asset Protection is an area you may want to qualify into, to enhance your knowledge and provide you with a well-rounded Private Wealth experience.


The Family and TTS teams work across all five of the firm’s offices: Exeter, Bristol, London, Cheltenham and Sidmouth. During my seat in Asset Protection, I have had the opportunity to work from the Exeter, Bristol and London offices. This has allowed me to spend time with my supervisor and other colleagues across the team in person, to raise my internal profile and expand my network across the firm.

International work

As the Asset Protection trainee, you have the opportunity to assist on various international matters. This may involve considerations for clients relocating to the UK, advising on enforcement against assets in other jurisdictions and international trusts and tax advice. Partner, Daniel Eames, who leads the Family team, is a recognised expert in international matrimonial matters. In this seat, you are encouraged to get involved in often complex international matters, enabling you to expand your knowledge beyond UK law.

The team has both astute technical knowledge of the law and the commercial awareness to provide practical advice for the client. This makes the work particularly challenging and rewarding.

My first seat has been a steep learning curve and I would highly recommend any future or prospective trainees to consider a seat in Asset Protection.