RWK Goodman hires employment team from Ince & Co in latest round of exits

At least 15 lawyers have quit the troubled Axiom Ince group over the past week

Marta Mendiondo (left) and Martin Pratt Photo courtesy of RWK Goodman

UK national firm RWK Goodman has hired a four-strong immigration and employment team from Ince & Co, the third set of departures from the group this week as it continues to deal with fallout from the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s suspension of the head of Ince’s parent company Axiom Ince.

The outgoing lawyers joining RWK Goodman include Marta Mendiondo, Martin Pratt, Holly Freuchen and Sudipta Dey. Mendiondo joins as head of immigration London and employment lawyer Pratt joins as a partner. Freuchen joins as a senior associate in the employment team and Dey joins as an associate and a senior immigration advisor.

They follow Ince & Co’s head of corporate James Channo and a three-strong team out of the door, along with a team of seven property lawyers from Axiom Ince including head of property Agnes Gay. Channo and his team have moved to RPC, while Gay and her team have moved to Mezzle.

Head of Axiom Ince Pragnesh Modhwadia was suspended by the SRA in mid-August for suspected dishonesty. While Axiom Ince is unaffected by the ruling, it has created a fresh bout of turmoil for Ince & Co, which was rescued from administration in April by Modhwadia’s firm AxiomDWFM, with the parent company then being rebranded Axiom Ince.

Speaking after the team’s departure, Mendiondo said: “We are very excited to join RWK Goodman to expand the existing immigration and nationality offering, both for corporates and private clients. We understand the challenges that the current immigration landscape poses for employers and individuals, and we are committed to providing the best support for them to achieve their goals.”

Mendiondo had been with Ince & Co since 2016, when it acquired her previous firm Platt & Associates, where she worked as an immigration consultant. Prior to that she worked in the UK Home Office as an entry clearance officer and before that for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office as a passport and consular assistant based in Moscow and Rome.

Pratt, meantime, arrives after a decade at Ince, most recently as head of employment law. He previously worked at Kingsley Napley, DLA Piper and legacy firm Campbell Hooper, having trained at Sharpe Pritchard Solicitors.

Malcolm Gregory, partner and head of employment at RWK Goodman, said: “The team have a leading reputation and will be a huge asset to our employment clients in London and further afield.”

Meanwhile, in the wake of Modhwadia’s suspension by the SRA, Axiom Ince has secured a £64m High Court freezing order against him ahead of the firm issuing a claim against him for alleged breach of fiduciary duty, the Law Society Gazette reported last week (12 September).

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