The founding partner of Levison Meltzer Pigott, Jeremy Levison is truly one of the greatest characters in the divorce law profession – renowned for his depth of knowledge (he has over 40 years’ experience in dealing with complex financial settlements for HNWs), superlative client care, razor-sharp intellect and charm.
He is a passionate art collector, supporting a wide range of artists (including the unknown, emerging and emerged); Works by the likes of Rose Wylie and Andrew Marr can be seen above the photocopiers and in the individual offices of his firm.
He is also a polymath, who counts Henry Moore, Sir Gary Sobers and Pinchas Zukerman among his heroes.
A founder of the International Academy of Family Lawyers, Levison continues to go from strength to strength. ‘My contacts with family lawyers worldwide assist in the successful resolution of a significant proportion of my cases that have an international dimension,’ he says.
And it’s been a fascinating year for Levison, both in terms of personal milestones and in the work that he’s done. On the latter, he is seeing ‘many more prenups’ come across his desk, which he views as a ‘quicker, private, and more efficient way of resolving disputes compared to relying on the court process. This is particularly apposite, given the difficulties the family justice system is currently facing,’ he adds. He also notes ‘an increase in private FDRs, arbitration and mediation – or just plain settling before it goes to court.
However, the profession is adapting too slowly: more progress, please.’ But the real highlight – ‘without doubt’ – was celebrating the firm’s 20th anniversary in June last year; an achievement that the classic car collector is rightly proud of.
‘I founded Levison Meltzer Pigott in June 1998 with Simon Pigott and the late Claire Meltzer,’ recalls this legal legend. ‘Although we’ve doubled in size over the years, we have always remained true to our founding ethos, and have avoided all temptations to be anything other than a perfectly formed, boutique, 100 per cent family law practice.’
It’s high value work, and often high profile as well: Levison counts many politicians, sports personalities and entertainment industry types among his clients. He also recently acted in a case around priority of proceedings under EU Brussels IIA that went to the European Court of Justice.
After such a long period at the very top of his game, one wonders what Levison has left to achieve. So does he still enjoy the job? Of course, he tells Spear’s, before concluding: ‘Like doctors, we take people at a low ebb – and we make them better.’