Fieldfisher Manchester partner duo quit to launch boutique

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Two Fieldfisher Manchester partners are leaving the firm to launch a new boutique, with former Halliwells chief Ian Austin taking over the leadership of the northern base.

Former Manchester head Matt Fleetwood and corporate partner Jim Truscott are leaving after joining Fieldfisher as part of its 2014 merger with Heatons. Prior to the merger, Fleetwood had led the Manchester firm for almost 10 years as managing partner.

Their departure date is not yet known.

Austin, who also joined Fieldfisher as a result of the Heatons merger, replaced Fleetwood as Manchester head this January. He joined Heatons in 2010 as his former firm Halliwells went into administration.

Fieldfisher managing partner Michael Chissick said: “I can confirm that Matt Fleetwood and Jim Truscott will be leaving Fieldfisher. I wish to thank Matt for his contribution to the firm over the last three years. His leadership since the merger in 2014 has helped the Manchester office to grow – both in finance and profile. I wish Matt and Jim well in their new endeavour.

“Ian Austin is the natural successor to Matt and has taken over as managing partner. Ian is ensuring a smooth transition in leadership and is continuing to drive the office’s tremendous growth.”

Austin held various senior roles at Halliwells, including managing partner, litigation head and executive chairman.

Halliwells fell into administration in July 2010. It was then broken up and several firms took over parts of the firm, with teams of partners joining firms including Hill Dickinson, Barlow Lyde & Gilbert, Gateley and Kennedys.