Based in Manchester with Irwin Mitchell’s ‘fast-moving’ family team, Bever isn’t deterred or prevented from acting in big London cases. She says she simply spends a lot of time on Skype — and on the train — to and from the capital.
She charges less than the southern-based lawyers featured on these pages, which often means she gets to spend more time with clients — time they value and often desperately need. ‘I see clients in London — and they may want to see me because my charge-out rate is £280, where it might be double that for a lawyer in London,’ she says.
Perhaps what is more attractive for Bever’s clients, most of whom come through recommendation, is her rounded skillset that covers separation, international corporate structures, high value trust instruments, dissolution of civil partnerships, children cases along with pre-nups and pre-cohabitation agreements.
The lawyer ‘oozes empathy’ and is ‘adept at dealing with the complexities of trusts and inheritance claims’ (according to Chambers & Partners) and is often praised by clients and other peers for her understanding approach, which at the same time is objective and realistic. Legal 500 called her ‘knowledgeable, imaginative and good humoured’ and ‘incredibly skilled and delivers excellent client care.’ One client praised her by saying: ‘Ros Bever was outstanding: intelligent, diligent, willing to go beyond the call of duty – and thoroughly nice with it.’
The trained collaborative lawyer is sensitive in handling family law matters and she is also a successful litigator who believes that in certain cases, court processes can solve her clients’ problems. An example of a notable success is her recent representation of divorcees Alison Sharland and Varsha Gohil at the Supreme Court, who had claimed they had been lied to regarding the real value of their respective ex-husbands’ assets. ‘Both husbands denied their dishonesty and hid behind highly technical arguments to avoid these consequences. In both cases, the Supreme Court has seen through those arguments to expose the true picture.’
Her statement on the company website says: ‘It is inevitable that other wives, husbands or civil partners who feel that they too have been misled during divorce proceedings will seek to bring their cases back to court, and we can expect them to see a significant rise in the number of challenges to existing divorce settlements.’
Approachable and soft-spoken, the partner and family team head has sixteen years’ experience exclusively dealing with family law — much of it in complex HNW and UHNW cases, including a recently reported High Court case where assets exceeded £60 million. She has also won several permissions to appeal to the Supreme Court — among other major highlights this year.
She bemoans the lack of court funding and cuts to legal aid. ‘The system is overrun with litigants in person issuing proceedings,’ she says. ‘It means the court doesn’t always have the time to consider or resolve issues. I think people who are involved in the court process may just feel they’ve been run through a process, rather than that someone has genuinely listened.’