Our People

John Riches LLB, TEP
John Riches John qualified as a solicitor in 1985. He has spent over thirty-seven years working with international family offices and structuring the personal affairs of UK residents and resident non-domiciled families. He creates structures for active entrepreneurs to hold business interests and frequently advises on issues relating to the interaction of family and business governance.

John is frequently listed in many publications as a leading private client adviser to international families. John has a deep interest in tax and regulatory policy and enters into regular dialogue with national and supranational bodies to represent the profession on these matters.

John has received numerous accolades from his peers over many years, and he is regularly ranked in the top tier of private client lawyers globally in international directories, including Chambers Global, and is widely regarded by his peers. John is also very active in public policy work, particularly in relation to the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners ('STEP') as well advising HMRC, the OECD and the Financial Action Task-Force ('FATF').

In May 2022, John was elected as the President Elect of the International Academy of Trust and Estate Lawyers.

His profile on Chambers and Partners mentions that John is

"highly respected", "a standout lawyer" "absolutely fantastic", "the private client guru,"

and also that John

"works with some of the biggest families in the world and is one of the most important private client practitioners out there."

Awards and Accolades:

  • Outstanding Achievement Award - STEP Private Client Awards 2007
  • Spears Outstanding Contribution to Wealth Management 2008
  • 'Trusted Adviser of the Year' - STEP Private Client Awards 2011
  • Spears Tax and Trust Lawyer of the Year Award 2017

John Riches’ Professional Memberships

  • A Trust and Estate Practitioner of STEP
  • Academician of the International Academy of Trust and Estate Lawyers ('IAETL')
  • International Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Council ('ACTEC')

Roles in Professional Societies

  • Chair of the STEP UK Technical Committee from 2003 - 2009
  • Co-Chair of the STEP Public Policy Committee from 2010 - 2021
  • Vice-President of IAETL for Europe in May 2014 – 2022
  • President Elect of the International Academy of Estate and Trust Law in May 2022
Public Policy Work and publications

As Chair of the Public Policy Committee from 2010 to 2021, John has been responsible for liaising with national and supra-national bodies on matters of tax policy affecting wealthy families and has been consulted by the OECD in respect of its initiative for High Net Worth Individuals; he also attended a number of sessions of the FATF Consultative Forum where FATF seeks views from the private sector on its proposals and guidance to member states. He co-authored the STEP practice note on the Common Reporting Standard and Trusts and attended the OECD’s Global Tax Forum 10th anniversary conference to speak on behalf of the private client community.

John has edited The Private Wealth & Private Client Review each year since September 2012. This book provides an annual overview of the changes in private wealth and private client law in over 30 countries.
John has recently contributed chapters to other publications, including a chapter on "Fiscal Nomads" and the implications for individuals of having either multiple or no tax residence status. He has also contributed a chapter on "The Origins of Beneficial Ownership Registers in the EU".

John regularly speaks at conferences and over webinars. In the past he has led a STEP Roundtable on the Social and Economic Benefits of Trusts. He and Samantha have also contributed to the STEP/ Law Commission Webinar entitled 'Modernising Trust Law for a Global Britain'. He contributed to a panel at the STEP Global Congress in July 2022 on Wealth Creation and Stewardship, entitled ‘The Twain Shall Meet’. In March 2024, he was one of three speakers at a STEP Webinar, exploring wealth planning through a multi-generational lens, focusing on balancing the interests of rising & current generations of wealth owning families.

Samantha Morgan LLB Hons, TEP
Samantha qualified as a solicitor in 1993. She has spent her career to date working with multiple international family offices, advising on all aspects of UK tax and fiduciary issues and co-ordinating foreign tax and other advice for family offices and family members.

Samantha has advised a number of offshore and onshore jurisdictions on legislation relating to trusts, private trust companies and family offices. She also advises trust companies, banks and investment houses on fiduciary and tax issues, which has included such areas as the structure and tax treatment of investments and trust structures and drafting standard trust and other related documentation.

Samantha works with individuals advising them on their personal tax issues, dealing particularly with US/UK tax issues. In September 2023, Samantha received The STEP 2023 Private Client Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Profession.


Samantha Morgan's Professional Memberships

  • Member of the STEP UK Technical Committee
  • Member of the STEP Public Policy Committee

Samantha Morgan's Awards

  • The STEP 2023 Private Client Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Profession.
Public Policy Work and publications

Samantha has advised a number of offshore and onshore jurisdictions on legislation relating to trusts, private trust companies and family offices.

Samantha has worked with STEP in relation to the FATF Guidance for Trust and Corporate Service Providers, liaising with the OECD in relation to the Common Reporting Standard, preparing responses to the consultation document issued by the OECD in relation to the Mandatory Disclosure Rules and responding to HMRC with respect to the consultation document on DAC 6 and the EU 5th Anti Money Laundering Directive. Samantha also co-chaired the FATF review into AML Guidance in 2019 for the trust industry globally.

Samantha was part of the STEP team working directly with the OECD and interested parties in discussing the implementation of the Common Reporting Standard and draft guidance, including attending meetings with OECD and HMRC and preparing draft guidance on behalf of STEP.

Samantha also worked on the STEP response to:

  • the Mandatory Disclosure Rules
  • the consultation document on preventing abuse of residence by investment schemes to circumvent the CRS
  • HMRC's consultation on trusts
  • HMRC's consultation document on DAC6
  • HMRC's consultation on trust registers and the implementation of the Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive.

Samantha has also led seminars on anti-money laundering legislation at UK and international conferences, focusing particularly on the application of such rules in relation to trusts. She chaired a panel at the STEP Global Congress in July 2022 on the legitimate use of trusts, entitled Trusting trusts: keeping the faith in a hostile world.

Stuart Skeffington LLB Hons TEP
Stuart qualified as a solicitor in 1999. He started his career at Clifford Chance LLP, working with business owners and senior figures in the financial markets, and then moved to Withers LLP in 2003. Stuart became a partner at Withers LLP in 2005, and a year later was asked to become European Head of the Funds, Investments and Tax Group. In 2008, Stuart joined Stevens & Bolton LLP, where he ran the private client group for over 10 years and sat on the firm’s Management Board.

Quotes about Stuart include

"incredibly technically skilled both in the onshore and offshore arenas. He really does have an encyclopaedic knowledge. He’s also got the ability to make tax concepts and issues palatable for people. A lot of lawyers get caught up in the excitement of the complexity, but Stuart puts the client first." Chambers High Net Wealth Guide

"He has an outstanding, strategic brain" and "is pragmatic when it comes to the commercial impact of tax issues". Chambers UK

Throughout his career, Stuart has enjoyed acting for a wide range of clients. He has a particular specialism in relation to self-generated wealth, including planning prior to liquidity events and helping families manage their legal and taxation affairs post-liquidity (including acting for generations down the line). Stuart is also very interested in investment taxation (including the taxation of carried interest) and acts for many senior figures in the financial services world. Other specialisms include the taxation of non-UK domiciliaries, advising in relation to complex onshore and offshore structures, cross-border taxation matters, employee
incentives, UK and international succession planning and philanthropy.

Stuart is equally at home acting for ultra-high net wealth families with international interests as he is acting for successful clients based in the Home Counties and other parts of the UK with a greater domestic focus. He is recommended as a leader in the field of private client in both Chambers and the Legal 500. Stuart is also listed in the Citywealth Leaders List and Spears list of top professionals. He has previously been a member of the Alternative Investment Management Association, sat as part of the STEP Awards judging panel and acted as an Expert Witness at the Royal Courts of Justice.

Eleanor Riches-Lenaghan, MA (Cantab.), LLM, TEP

Eleanor qualified as a private client solicitor in October 2020. She advises clients in relation to UK and cross-border estate and succession planning, Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney and Trusts. She also assists Samantha, John and Stuart with designing and setting up structures for international and entrepreneurial families, as well as business and family governance structures.

Eleanor has a particular interest in cross-border policy, writing dissertations on beneficial ownership registers and deemed domicile for her Master of Laws. Since qualification, Eleanor has undertaken significant research into international tax policy issues. She has also co-authored chapters on The Origins of Beneficial Ownership Registers in the EU and Fiscal Nomads: the Impact of Relocation on CRS and DAC6.

Eleanor has obtained her STEP Diploma in Trusts and Estates with Distinction, and she also received the STEP Worldwide Excellence Award for her STEP Advanced Certificate in the Administration of Estates in May 2021.

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