Vincents Solicitors appoints head of corporate and commercial

Vincents Solicitors has appointed Michael Sandys as director of corporate and commercial. He will be based in the firm's Preston office.

Michael brings more than 20 years of experience as a solicitor in practice. He specialises in intellectual property, commercial contracts, business sale and acquisitions, restructures, refinancing and shareholder agreements.

He also acts for both claimants and defendants in media law and libel cases, including those involving national newspapers, trade unions and broadcasting channels.

Michael qualified as a barrister and was called to the Bar in 1991 before making the switch to become a solicitor a decade later, working in-house for a major telecoms company in Liverpool. He has also worked in-house for a high street and online clothing retailer, and for law firms across the region including Cobbetts and Halliwells in Manchester. Michael retains his Rights of Audience in the High Court but now focuses on corporate legal work and intellectual property, in which he has a master’s degree.

Michael said: "We only tend to hear about intellectual property when it comes to a contentious issue and someone has wrongly used someone else’s creation without permission. Those headline cases are often the result of a missed opportunity to carefully and clearly protect that asset in the first place, and can prove to be an extremely costly mistake for both sides.

"I help clients to identify the assets and rights which should be protected and arrange the appropriate level of protection, then put in place the correct licencing or collaboration agreements to allow the creator to commercialise their rights and generate commercial revenue. This early work aims to prevent issues from becoming contentious but, if an infringement does occur and goes to court, we’ll ensure our client is given the best advice to ensure a successful outcome."

Michael brings with him Karen Sandys, his wife and assistant of 15 years. while trainee solicitor Tia Grimshaw will move from the property team to work with Michael as part of her training contract.

Phillip Gilmore, Vincents Solicitors managing director, said: “A well-known and well-respected figure among businesses in Cheshire and Merseyside, with clients across all sectors from around the North West, Michael is an exceptional addition to the Vincents team.

"As director of corporate and commercial he will be a great asset for our business clients for whom I’ve no doubt he can add significant value in a wide variety of ways.”