James Copson

Of counsel

James is special counsel in the divorce and family team.

He has far-reaching experience in all areas of family breakdown, with a particular emphasis on the resolution of complex financial disputes, especially those of an international nature. He has an extensive command of the negotiation and drafting of pre- and post-nuptial agreements. He advises on cohabitation claims and private children law matters, to include residence and sharing of care of children and international relocation of children. He pays meticulous attention to the crucial details whilst maintaining commercial intelligence and striking judgement in achieving sensible outcomes for his clients.

James has acted for many trustees and beneficiaries on trust-related issues in divorce, and for a wide-ranging number of individuals in sport, especially in the world of football. James has particular expertise in Anglo-Italian cases.

Secrétaire Sasha Glassup


My divorce was unpleasant and challenging, and James was absolutely first class. He combined technical legal excellence with humanity, calmness, great patience and humour. He set out strategic aims and principles against which my case would be ‎managed and delivered on all of these. He met aggression with assertion, obstruction with smart tactical engagement, and belligerence with charm and decency. The ultimate outcome of the case was sound, protecting the welfare of my children and finding an equitable balance between the needs of my former wife and myself.

Hotelier and entrepreneur

Thank you Withers, in particular James Copson and Richard Handel, for all your support, hard work and professionalism during my long and difficult struggle. My sincere appreciation for helping me move on to a better life. I would not hesitate to recommend Withers anytime.


I have been a customer of Withers Worldwide for almost 3 years. I have always found James Copson to be very professional, efficient and supportive. I would always recommend James to anyone looking for a family lawyer as possibly, more importantly to me, James has a good heart as well as a good work ethic. He always keeps me calm during times of despair with my daughter’s dad.

Property investor

The ‘extremely good’ James Copson practises across a range of family financial issues and Children Act matters. He is particularly well versed in cross-border issues, particularly those involving Italy and other EU states.

Chambers UK 2018, London

James is a real tactician with a great technical understanding of the law. He’s an absolute delight to work with and knows what he’s doing and you know he’s taking the solid point, you can rely on him to hold a reasonable line.

Chambers HNW 2018, London

James Copson is incredibly good at untangling corporate webs, offshore trusts and tracing assets.

Chambers HNW, 2020

His fellow practitioners say he is ‘really down to earth’ and ‘phenomenally clever.’

Chambers HNW, 2020

He knows his stuff but he really looks to try and see if there can be agreement on things.

Chambers HNW, 2021

Track record




Acting for the successful appellant in the landmark case of Wicks, which confirms current English law on interim capital arrangements in divorce.

Representing the successful appellant in the case of Pearce, which sets out the law on capitalisation of spousal maintenance (alimony) years after divorce.

Representing the wife in TvT, which interprets the meaning of ‘maintenance’ under European Union law.

England and Wales, 1991

Resolution’s Property, Tax and Pensions Committee

International Academy of Family Lawyers

Association International des Jeunes Avocats

American Bar Association (Overseas Member)


Resolution National Conference, annual tax and divorce workshops

Moi en une minute

I enjoy the challenges each day brings

I am the son of a diplomat and as a result a quirky feature of my early life is that I grew up in three countries that no longer exist. I have acted in a number of highly political cases and one of the highlights of my career was representing a matrimonial client in Court defending an application by a foreign government seeking inspection of all papers on the court file in my case. It was very much David and Goliath. Again, David won.

I am the firm’s Diversity and Inclusion partner, a role I find extremely fulfilling as it brings an extra dimension to my day job as a family lawyer.

As a family lawyer I enjoy the challenges each day brings. Each one is different. I try to keep things simple even when technical issues arise. I have been told many times that I am upbeat and my cheerfulness has a really positive effect on my clients.

I live in the countryside and like nothing better than a brisk country walk with the nirvana of a country pub at the end of it.

I am married with two dogs and two cats - and two sons.

My passion is for the game of football and I am an ardent armchair supporter of Chelsea. Sadly the season ticket had to go when moving to the country. It also doesn’t help being married to a Liverpool fan.



  • English


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