Firm news

Withers' new partner promotions boost California, Singapore, Tokyo and London

5 January 2021

Withers has promoted 12 lawyers to partner from across its Asia, UK and US west coast offices with effect from 1st January 2021.

The new partner appointees are drawn from all three of the firm's business divisions and are located as follows:

San Diego

  • Helen Cheng is a private client and tax lawyer advising on international tax planning, as well as charitable planning. Helen joined the firm in 2015.
  • Matthew Owens is a trust and estate litigator, representing clients on trust disputes, elder abuse actions and fiduciary claims. Matthew joined Withers in 2015.
  • Catherine Swafford is a trust and estate litigator advising on will and trust disputes, conservatorships and breaches of fiduciary duty. Catherine joined the firm in 2015.


  • Connie Yik Kong is a US-qualified private client and tax lawyer advising on cross-border estate and trust planning, as well as real estate investment and immigration matters. Connie joined Withers in 2013.
  • Kenneth Szeto combines a practice advising on banking and finance transactions and corporate and residential real estate deals. Kenneth joined Withers in 2017.


  • Steven Wheeler is a US-qualified and foreign registered attorney advising on corporate and commercial real estate matters, as well as bank lending, corporate structuring and restructuring. Steven has been with Withers since 2018.


  • Sinead Harris is a litigator who advises on cross-border commercial disputes and insolvency matters. Sinead joined Withers in 2017.
  • Mara Monte is a private client and tax lawyer who frequently advises European clients on issues under English common law and European civil law, including tax, trust and estate planning. Mara has been with Withers since 2009.
  • Natasha Oakshett is a private client and tax lawyer advising on wealth planning, with a particular focus on representing asset managers and entrepreneurs. Natasha joined the firm in 2006.
  • Adele Pledger is a family law specialist, advising on divorce, cohabitation, pre and post nuptial agreements and children matters. Adele has been with Withers since 2009.
  • Natasha Stourton is a trust and estate litigator advising on onshore and offshore disputes including probate and trustee matters and professional negligence in trust administration. Natasha joined the firm in 2007.
  • Ben Williams is an intellectual property expert in the Withers tech team, focused on helping a wide range of technology-based clients protect their innovations and resolve IP disputes. Ben joined the firm in 2013.

Margaret Robertson, Chief Executive of Withers, comments: "We are delighted to be able to make up such a large international group to partner this year. These appointments reflect the equal importance of our three key geographical regions and how our clients around the world are seeking expert advice in the management of private capital, wealth succession and the skilled resolution of problems. Well-deserved congratulations to them all."

This document (and any information accessed through links in this document) is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from any action as a result of the contents of this document.


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