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Latest ABS to be owned by property management firm

Crabtree Law could expand into commercial property and conveyancing

14 August 2012

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The latest ABS to be licensed, niche property litigation firm Crabtree Law, will be owned by a large property management firm when its licence becomes effective next month.

Crabtree Property Management specialises in running blocks of flats, but also manages shops and offices, and currently has 17,000 units in its portfolio, mainly in London and the south of England.

James Naylor, currently the company solicitor, will become sole partner in Crabtree Law LLP and joined by a non-lawyer assistant.

“Nothing has happened yet, but it is all set up and, as soon the licence is effective, we will start operating”.

He said the ABS would specialise in property litigation, including landlord and tenant and commercial leases.

Naylor said Crabtree Property Management had “a lot of clients and contacts” and the idea was to provide a “low cost base” to service them.

He said he hoped the firm would “eventually” offer other services, such as non-contentious commercial property and conveyancing, but this would require a change in its licence.

Naylor said the ABS would be owned by Crabtree Property Holdings, which owns the property management firm.

He added that appointing a non-lawyer partner at Crabtree Law was not “something we’ve thought about” and “not part of the plan”, nor was external investment.

Naylor will be head of legal practice and Arti Parmar, finance director at Crabtree Property Management, will be head of finance and administration. Their licence will become effective on 1 September 2012.

Naylor will own a minority stake in Crabtree Law.

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Landlord & Tenant