May 31, 2024
Doyle's Guide

Editorial Commentary – Construction, Western Australia, 2012

This section provides additional information in relation to firm and individuals capabilities as well as any general market trends and influences relating to the legal services aspect of the Western Australian construction market.  It is compiled on the back of feedback from both solicitors practising within these areas and client referees.

Firm Capabilities (Alphabetical Order)

Allens Linklaters’ presence within the WA construction market continues to grow.  Michael Hollingdale continues to be a “polished operator” on front end matters and seen as “technically strong”, while Steve McComish’s work on back-end matters was viewed as “professional” and “sharp”.

Ashurst Partner Paul Riethmuller managed to overcome a lack of visible deputies to position the firm actively in the Western Australian construction market to position the firm as a leading player on front end construction matters.

In the 2011 construction rankings we noted Clayton Utz’s Perth construction practice as the underperformer within both one of the firm’s stronger practice groups and offices.  One year on and the Perth construction practice is on the rise.  Stephen Boyle, despite peer predictions of impending retirement has grown in recognition and the addition of former Minter Ellison and Squire Sanders Partner Clive Luck adds both depth, quality and a not too shabby list of new clients to the Perth practice.  Add to this a pending additional Partner appointment within the team and, all going well the firm may just have enough gas in the tank to outlast its ambitious competitors.

Jackson McDonald’s Basil Georgiou was seen as a “good on litigious jobs”, particularly those with an insurance component.

King & Wood Mallesons WA construction practice, after the death of Simon Lee in 2010, while looking to rebuild with the relocation of Beth Cubitt to the firm’s Perth office (from Melbourne) is yet to gain the local traction required to establish itself in the upper levels of our rankings.

Kott Gunning’s Laurie James was widely viewed as the Western Australian market’s preferred choice of arbitrator and mediator.

Lavan Legal’s Shane Pentony and Robert Shaw run a well respected back end practice with Shaw singled out for his “professional and pragmatic” approach.

Squire Sanders’ Greg Steinepries long a client and peer favourite has managed to uphold his personal brand and

Richard Wilenski at Tottle Partners was seen as a mid-tier contractor favourite on both front and back end matters.

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