Jessica HensonPartner at Payne Hicks Beach
Jessica is a private client partner specialising in risk and disputes in relation to trusts and estates.
Jessica has accrued extensive trust litigation experience both in England and offshore. Her cases have included both seeking and defending the removal of trustees, protectors and executors; rectification and variation of trusts; setting aside and defending trusts on the basis of sham allegations; challenging trustees’ decisions and advising trustees on making decisions in contentious circumstances; challenging trustees’ fees; claims for breach of fiduciary duty; and associated professional negligence proceedings against tax and legal advisors.
Equally, Jessica frequently advises on probate and estate disputes, including invalidity claims, capacity and construction issues, as well as claims under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependents) Act 1975.
Jessica has also built up particular expertise in advising trustees and beneficiaries on issues of trust law in the context of divorce proceedings – both in relation to proceedings in the Family Division and in the corresponding offshore trust jurisdictions.
Jessica draws on her wealth of litigation experience to inform asset protection and estate planning strategies designed to avoid disputes in the future. For this reason, Jessica is frequently asked to advise on the establishment of trusts, pre and post nuptial agreements and Wills where there are particular risks or asset protection concerns.
Jessica is the co-founder and co-chair of ConTrA (the Contentious Trusts Association) which runs informative seminars and conferences for over 400 members both in the UK and offshore. She is also a regular speaker at other international conferences and frequently lectures on topics surrounding the psychology of litigation.
Having studied Classics at Cambridge University, Jessica trained at Herbert Smith and worked at Berwin Leighton Paisner before joining Payne Hicks Beach.
Qualified September 2011, joined Payne Hicks Beach as a partner 2020.