CMS enters fray with hire of London Sedgwick partner

CMS is the latest firm to recruit from Sedgwick’s City office with the addition of London insurance claims partner Tristan Hall, Legal Week understands.

Hall, who also specialises in financial and cyber risks, will depart the US firm after seven years.

He will be joined by associates Andrew Milne and Luke Gething and will begin at CMS on 2 January.

Five out of six Sedgwick London partners have now found homes as the US firm prepares to wind down operations. The only partner whose next move is unknown, is office managing partner Edward Smerdon.

Yesterday (6 December), Legal Week reported that London international property and casualty team head Mark Kendall and litigation dispute partner Duncan Strachan have quit Sedgwick to join DAC Beachcroft in January 2018.

Kendall and Strachan will be joined by senior associates Lucy Dyson and Sarah Hennessy and associates Alison Thompson and Kayleigh Stout, as well as a non-fee earner.

Last week, RPC announced a double partner hire from Sedgwick’s London office. Insurance partner Naomi Vary, who has a focus on political risk, terrorism insurance and trade credit, is set to join the firm alongside professional indemnity partner Karen Morrish.

Legal Week also reported yesterday that Clyde & Co is in discussions to hire up to 25 Sedgwick partners across the US West Coast, as well as talking to a number of individuals elsewhere.

The West Coast partners include insurance litigation partner Bruce Celebrezze and Alexander Potente from Sedgwick’s San Francisco office, who will join Clydes in January.

Sedgwick announced that it would close down in early January, following a string of partner departures and office closures.

The firm’s headcount has been slashed by 39% over 12 months, leaving it with fewer than 160 lawyers, according to data complied by ALM Legal Intelligence. This came alongside closures in Washington DC, Austin, Fort Lauderdale and Houston.

CMS and Sedgwick did not respond to requests for comment.