SRA suspends Axiom Ince head Pragnesh Modhwadia

Modhwadia and two other directors of fast-growing UK firm prohibited from practising as solicitors
April 13 2019: Image taken of Aldgate Tower at 2 Leman Street, London E1 8FA. Aldgate station was not busy as this was taken on a weekday late afternoon.

Aldgate Tower, home to Ince & Co Mrtravelbunny; Shutterstock

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has suspended Axiom Ince’s leader, Pragnesh Modhwadia, for suspected dishonesty.

The SRA’s move, which it described as an intervention into his individual practice, came to light yesterday when it published a regulatory notice that said its adjudicator was satisfied “grounds for intervention existed” for breaching solicitors' rules “namely that there was reason to suspect dishonesty on the part of Pragnesh Modhwadia in connection with his practice as a solicitor”. 

A second cited reason for the intervention was that he had failed to comply with solicitors' rules. The decision was made on 10 August and he is listed as being prohibited from practising in the Solicitors Register.

However, the SRA said Axiom Ince, which this year bought out of separate administrations international shipping firm Ince & Co and national insurance practice Plexus Law, was not the subject of an intervention and “continues to trade in the ordinary course of business”.

Modhwadia is listed as one of 15 directors of Axiom Ince, which changed its name from Axiom DWFM in May after its acquisition of Ince & Co. Considered the driving force behind the fast-growing firm, he was managing partner of regional firm Axiom DWFM having founded London firm Axiom Stone Solicitors, which merged with regional outfit DWFM Beckham in 2021.

Two other directors have also been suspended following separate interventions by the SRA for suspected breaching of solicitors’ rules, namely Shyam Mistry, who was head of personal injury and medical negligence at Axiom DWFM, and Idnan Liaqat, who was head of commercial, investment and residential property.

In a statement, the firm said: “The SRA have confirmed that the firm continues to operate and the directors and partners have taken immediate steps to protect the business, our clients and our employees whose wellbeing remains our priority as we navigate the best and most viable way to proceed.”

Modhwadia was the primary spokesperson for Axiom Ince, which operates as a limited company.

In April, he spoke of his enthusiasm when the Ince Group's legal business and associated assets were sold out of administration to AxiomDWFM. “When the opportunity came to acquire a business of the calibre of Ince & Co we were eager to engage and are delighted that the Ince & Co team shared our enthusiasm,” he said. 

His firm hit the headlines again last month when it bought national UK defendant insurance firm Plexus Law out of administration in a deal that secured the jobs of 520 employees and 20 fixed share partners.

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