Meet the team
Andrew Firman is a partner in our corporate & commercial team. His corporate practice concentrates on buying and selling mainly owner-managed SMEs and associated advice on contractual and banking documentation work. His employment practice covers all aspects of contentious and non-contentious work for both employers and employees. His charity practice majors on compliance and amalgamation matters.
In his work, Andrew looks for proactive and pragmatic solutions derived from a proper understanding of the client’s perspective and against the background of the commercial constraints.
Career highlights include
- running a David v Goliath style battle for a former employee of a US based bank related to the late vesting of share options following that employee’s termination at a time when the US markets were in freefall
- negotiating, finalising and drawing down for an off-shore SPV borrower at £310M facility to buy a group of companies which owned, as an investment, the London HQ of a multinational corporation
- reaching settlement terms on a long running shareholders’ dispute concerning a company running a niche members’ gym in a close knit area of London
More recently, Andrew has advised upon
- the purchase of owner-managed companies across a number of different sectors by a leading SME investor, incentivising existing management via equity and loan note positions in the purchasing entity
- sale by owner managers of a London based estate agency business with multiple sites, whilst preserving the sellers’ ability to continue business activity in the sector
- sale of SPV off shore companies holding UK property assets
- multi facility refinancing of a major UK specialist facilities maintenance company with asset based receivables, property, cashflow and recovery loan scheme elements
- the negotiation and documentation of departure terms for the CEO pioneer of a cutting edge national charity
- the position of a charity trustee in connection with disqualification proceedings and interim manager appointment by the Charity Commission in respect of two charitable trusts
Andrew has over the years enjoyed advising many owner-managed SMEs on the range of their needs for commercial, employment and dispute related legal advice, something for which the firm has received increasing recognition through awards, repeat and new business which in turn goes to the depth of the relationships the firm has with its clients and its target market in terms of size of business clients.
Andrew was educated at Nailsea School and holds degrees in law from Manchester and Leicester Universities. He qualified as a solicitor in 1995. He is a co-author of a Practical Guide to Drone Law.
Away from the office Andrew, married to a local GP and of occasional use to his three children, enjoys running and cycling and being involved in various ways in his local church and the fantastic community that is SE24.
Carmen is a paralegal with over 7 years’ experience in immigration. Her calm and efficient manner ensures matters are dealt with as quickly and cost effectively for clients as possible.
Carmen provides general support to fee earners and Partners within Company Commercial and Immigration teams. She assists in the day-to-day functions of the Immigration team including all aspects of casework and assisting in the preparation of applications. Under direct supervision, Carmen acts as a caseworker on straightforward cases, and supports solicitors in more complex matters. She reviews client queries and drafts responses for review by solicitors and prepares documentation for application under a wide range of visa routes with great skill. As part of the Company Commercial team, she has reviewed share purchase agreements, drafted escrow agreements, prepared bundles for mediation and recently attended a successful mediation meeting over a contract dispute.
She holds degrees in Airline and Airport Management (First-Class Honours), and International Politics and Economics (2:1).
Outside of work, Carmen plays the piano, enjoys trying new activities (the latest being paddle boarding) and is an active church member.
Jarmila’s extensive and well-rounded experience in both corporate and private immigration enables her to advise and assist clients efficiently. Her detailed knowledge of the Home Office policies and her professional manner is a great benefit to clients with tight deadlines.
Her experience also includes applications for the review of public authority decisions by the court, that enable such decisions to be challenged on the grounds of illegality, irrationality and unfairness. Jarmila understands the particulars of bringing or defending a claim. She works with clients from the start to identify the core issues and gain an understanding of the key concerns, which allow her to deliver focused and clear advice. Jarmila works with her clients from the beginning and throughout the preparation to ensure the clients’ actions are lawful, or where a potential dispute arises she assists with a principled, measured and robust defence.
Jarmila receives instructions to prepare appeals to First tier and Upper Tribunals of the Immigration and Asylum Chambers and has been involved in judicial review applications at the High Court.
Jarmila assists clients on HR issues and all aspects of employment law including: employment rights; discrimination, victimisation and whistleblowing; termination of employment and settlement agreements; redundancies and restructures; TUPE; employment policies and employment contracts; HR process, including disciplinaries and grievances.
She has strong links in the Slovak community and cooperates with the Embassy of the Slovak Republic in advising corporate and private clients about sponsoring workers as well as family visas and status under the EU Settlement Scheme.
Jarmila has had articles published in the Employment Law Journal and Law Gazette for Westminster and Holborn.
She is a member of the Immigration Law Practitioners Association.
Katarzyna (Kate) Boguslawska qualified as a solicitor in 2006 and is a Partner in our corporate and commercial department.
Kate’s clients range from start-up owners through to SMEs and some global main-players who need advice on business-related matters. These range from advice on employment and company matters to contract drafting and disputes. Kate understands her clients, their needs and goals. Her clients often praise her pragmatic approach and tailored practical advice.
In her employment practice Kate:
- drafts contracts, handbooks and company policies
- provides regular Employment/HR Advice
- negotiates contracts
- drafts and negotiate settlement agreements
- helps to navigate through TUPE, restructure and redundancies
- advises and represents in claims for unfair dismissal, discrimination, breach of contract, unlawful deduction from wages, etc
- advises on injunctive relief and restrictive covenants
Notable employment work included:
- advising a well-known English designer in company restructure and redundancies;
- advising employers and high net worth individuals on settlement agreements and severance packages;
- regular HR advice to a number of company clients;
- advising media company on contracts and issues relating to confidentiality, IP and restrictive covenants;
- representing high earning claimants in ‘Stress at Work’ personal injury matters.
In her commercial and company practice Kate:
- advises on suitable business entities and company formation;
- advises on company and directors’ duties;
- drafts necessary company documents including amended articles and resolutions;
- drafts and negotiates contracts and shareholders’ agreements;
- advises on shareholders disputes.
Notable commercial work included:
- advising and representing foreign companies establishing business in the UK;
- advising companies on matters involving directors’ duties and shareholders’ disputes;
- advising a Polish PLC on contract matters and negotiating on its behalf with an English PLC;
- representing an international cosmetics company in injunctive relief and restraint of trade matters;
- representing hauliers in representations against Border Force and HMRC in excise duty matters;
- advising EU nationals on immigration issues, residency and citizenship applications in the UK.
Kate has strong links in the Polish community and is recommended by the Polish Embassy in London, having co-written a Guide for Polish Investors in the UK that was published by the Embassy. She has a broad network of international connections and has been instructed by law firms in Poland to assist their clients in matters involving English jurisdiction.
Listen to Kate’s podcast
- Commercial property transactions
- Purchase and sales of commercial properties
- Grants of commercial leases
- Property aspects of M&A transactions
- Over 40 years working in all areas of immigration and nationality
Robert studied Business Management before converting to Law and attending the College of Law in London. Robert qualified as a Solicitor in 1983.
Before qualifying as a Solicitor in March 1983, Robert worked as a property agent and played football at a semi-professional level.
Robert has earned himself the reputation of being both commercial and caring in his approach to clients.
He is a member of the Immigration Law Practitioners Association and The Lawyers Christian Fellowship.
Robert speaks Armenian and Farsi.