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Stephen Morris

Partner

Tel: 

+44 (0)1932 590588

Email: 

stephen.morris@mundays.co.uk

Profile


Stephen Morris joined Mundays in 1993, having trained in an established Central London firm, before becoming a partner in a City firm.

Stephen is a partner in Mundays’ Dispute Resolution Department where he heads the Property Disputes team, which deals with the full range of issues arising from the ownership, letting and occupation of commercial and residential property. He specialises in disputes relating to restrictive covenants, rights of way, rights of light, boundaries and other property rights. He is also experienced in dealing with the full range of legal principles relating to commercial leases and long leases of residential property.

Stephen also has a wealth of experience in dealing with disputes arising in respect of the validity of wills, the administration of estates and claims by disappointed beneficiaries under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975. He also advises on issues arising in respect of the legal position of elderly and incapacitated individuals, in particular disputes arising in respect of enduring and lasting powers of attorney.

Stephen has over 30 years’ experience of dealing with the procedural requirements of the court’s rules in respect of litigation. He couples these with long experience and acknowledged skill in the negotiation of constructive outcomes to disputes in the fields in which he operates. Where appropriate, these are achieved through mediation, to which he brings maturity and an ability to get to the heart of the elements which underlie disputes and the personal issues which can make them so hard to settle.

Stephen is acknowledged as a leading individual in Real Estate Litigation in Chambers’ Directory 2017 where clients describe Stephen as "brilliant, charming and clearly knows what he is talking about." According to one source, he "has a wealth of experience. He is approachable and he speaks in layman's terms ." He heads the practice and is a property rights specialist. The 2015 edition he is praised for "explaining the different scenarios, and understanding that each client has a different understanding of the law”. In the 2014 edition, Stephen was described as having “a wealth of experience” and “is punctual, to the point, yet always courteous”. The Legal 500 2017 acknowledged Stephen as a leading individual in Property Litigation.

recent experience

Stephen has recently advised:

  • a developer of luxury housing with regard to the refusal of a residents’ association to consent to a development for which planning consent had been granted, requiring analysis of restrictive covenant and careful tactical and legal advice as to client’s options.
  • the owner of valuable freehold property in central London with regard to the rights of a long leaseholder whose lease was on the verge of expiry in circumstances where there had been a long history of breaches by the tenant, who also sought to exercise statutory rights to acquire the freehold, leading to a series of tribunal hearings. The matter required careful strategic thinking and understanding of the client’s commercial aims.
  • on behalf of the owners of private property who had for many years been in dispute with neighbours in relation to the ownership and use of a strip of adjacent unregistered land. The case involved hearings in court and the relevant tribunal but most significantly, it called on Stephen’s years of experience in mediation and negotiation, which assisted the clients to achieve comprehensive and agreed terms for the settlement of the disputes.
  • the owners of three properties in relation to a successful claim against a firm of solicitors who had acted negligently in advising them on the extension of their leases, making their properties unsellable. Stephen piloted the procedure necessary to make the leases sellable and the consequential negotiations with the solicitors’ insurers which resulted in settlement being achieved through mediation.
  • the daughter of a wealthy deceased businessman in a dispute with her father’s second wife in relation to the division of his multi-million pound estate when the widow sought an increased share of it. He guided the client through the proceedings and helped her to achieve a satisfactory negotiated outcome following a lengthy mediation.
  • the beneficiary of a substantial estate in relation to a challenge to the validity of the will by the residuary beneficiary under a previous will.
  • one of three siblings who, as an executor and beneficiary of his mother’s estate, found himself in a deeply personal dispute with his siblings relating to the validity of his mother’s will and the administration of the estate. The emotional issues contributed to a dispute which required extreme sensitivity and empathy from Stephen, as well as a clear insight as to how to achieve a workable settlement, which also satisfied all three siblings.
  • in a dispute between siblings with regard to the administration of the affairs of their elderly relation under the terms of a joint enduring power of attorney where the parties were no longer communicating with each other.

articles

Ilott -v- Mitson


additional information

Stephen is also Mundays’ Training Principal, responsible for the recruitment of our trainees and the oversight of their development into the solicitors of the future. His success in this role has been reflected in Mundays having been nominated as “Best Trainer – Medium Regional Practice” in the Training and Recruitment Awards 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016; he was also nominated as Best Training Principal in 2014 in firms with a small trainee intake.

In his spare time, Stephen is a keen theatre and opera-goer and has travelled widely. He tries to fend off the advancing years with pilates, squash and gym.


What others say about Stephen


Stephen Morris is acknowledged as a leading individual of Property Litigation in The Legal 500 2016.

The Legal 500 UK 2016


Practice head Stephen Morris advises on restrictive covenants, rights of way and rights of light cases. One client notes: "He is brilliant, charming and clearly knows what he is talking about." Another source says: "Stephen has a wealth of experience. He is approachable and he speaks in layman's terms ."

Chambers & Partners UK 2017

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