Masefields have been providing legal services to the community since around 1836 when George Masefield took over the Holbrook law firm which had carried on its practice on the present site from some time in the 18th century. The middle part of the building is believed to have been used as court offices in the past. On a recent clearout, court documents dating back to 1703 were discovered (not to mention a newspaper report of the battle of Waterloo). The building itself is much older and may have been constructed as early as the 14th century.
Considerable efforts have been made in recent years to modernise the practice and update its systems and today we aim to stay true to our traditions of professionalism and service while embracing modern technology and methods.
Our clients have been entrusting their affairs to us for generations. We are proud to carry on our family tradition of giving sound and practical advice. Acting in our clients’ best interests always informs our approach and is at the heart of what we do.
As a firm of solicitors, we are subject to our professional code of conduct and are regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. While abiding by the professional rules to which we are subject, we have always had our own philosophy of the kind of firm we wish to be. Prompted by our aspiration to adhere to the business principles contained in the sixth generation of the Investors in People standard, for the first time we are setting down in writing the our values which define the way in which we conduct ourselves and our business; for the benefit, we hope, of our clients, staff and everyone else with whom we have dealings. These our values therefore go further than our professional rules and provide a definition of who we are, what we do and how we do it.
Below each value numbered below, we give a brief description of what each one means in practice. That description is not intended to be comprehensive but is indicative of how the value is interpreted.
1. We value our independence
We have been in business as a family firm since 1836 or thereabouts. We are not entirely sure when George Masefield, having moved from Shropshire, took over the law firm carried on then by Holbrook at our premises in Worcester Road. Since then the owners have always included members of the Masefield family. The firm has never been sold, or belonged to any outside body.
We believe we can best serve our clients by remaining independent. Therefore we do not, as some solicitor firms do, pay estate agents or others for referring work to us as we believe doing so would compromise our ability to give impartial advice.
2. We will always give advice in our clients’ best interests
We will do this even though we may lose business as a result. For example, we will never recommend appointment of professional executors, trustees or attorneys unless we think it is in the client’s best interests and then we will explain why we think that. If we think a client does not need advice from us or is capable of doing work themselves, we will tell them. We will always look for the most cost-effective solutions for our clients’ needs.
3. We will always behave with integrity
We will always obey the law and we will not help anyone to break it. We will be honest in the performance of our work and will not provide false or misleading information or statements. We will conduct ourselves in a manner which commands respect and trust in others.
4. We want to provide the best service we can to our clients
In our dealings with professionals and others when acting for our clients, our policy is to be constructive, not confrontational, because this approach more often generates a positive and cost-effective outcome. However, when that policy is not effective or appropriate, we have the experience, and are always ready, to fight our clients’ corner with skill and determination.
5. We will be transparent about how best we can help our clients
We take care to explain our advice as best we can, and be realistic about what is achievable and when, so that our clients have the best information we can provide to help them make decisions. We do not believe that the law needs to be shrouded in mystique. We will use technical language only when it is unavoidable and we will always be ready to explain it.
6. We will be approachable and helpful with everyone
We aim to be courteous and considerate at all times. We recognise that for many people coming to a solicitors’ office is not high on their wish list, and can sometimes be a daunting prospect. We want callers and visitors to feel welcome and valued. We enjoy clients and prospective clients coming to our office and will always try to help as best we can.
masefield solicitors LLP
Charles Masefield and Emma Davies are members of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP). Nia Jones is a technician member of STEP. The Society is the leading international organisation for lawyers and other professionals who deal with will, trusts, estates and related taxes. If you would like to know more please visit: www.step.org.
Linda Beddoes is a member of Resolution. This is an association of family lawyers and other professionals who are dedicated to resolving family disputes in a constructive manner. If you would like to know more please visit: http://www.resolution.org.uk/.