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Catherine is a trusts and succession planning lawyer with extensive expertise advising wealthy individuals and families, executors, trustees and high-profile entrepreneurs. Her clients value both her technical expertise and sensitivity of approach.

A highly regarded private client lawyer with decades of experience, Catherine advises mainly UK-based clients on the full range of private client matters including inheritance tax and estate planning, wills, lasting powers of attorney, trust drafting and restructuring, and the administration of estates.

Catherine has considerable experience in advising the trustees of landed estates and those with inherited wealth. She has particular expertise in restructuring trusts and inheritance tax planning focussing on business property relief involving partnerships. She is also highly regarded for her advice on cross-border succession law.

Acknowledged for her wealth of expertise, Catherine often advises executors of high value, complex estates, particularly those with unusual assets - such as works of art, intellectual property interests, business assets and heritage property.

Catherine takes great care to acquire a full understanding of her clients’ needs and circumstances, often building long-lasting relationships. Prized as a trusted and supportive adviser, clients value her pragmatic and quietly understated approach, her technical expertise and meticulous attention to detail. They also appreciate the thoughtful, sensitive and astute manner in which Catherine responds to their particular - and often complex - circumstances and her clarity of communication. Catherine’s clients often benefit from her many valuable connections with experts in a broad range of related sectors, both in the UK and abroad.

Catherine is a member of the committee of STEP's Cross-Border Estates SIG.

Catherine qualified as a solicitor in 1985.


"Catherine is really good, extremely experienced and very nice to work with. She is great with the clients and inspires confidence." (Chambers HNW 2023)

"Catherine is friendly, open-minded, and does her best to achieve the results we are collectively striving for. She has a wealth of experience and that helps a lot when confronted with difficult situations. She creates a calmness." (Chambers HNW 2023)

" …an excellent private client lawyer; she is technically brilliant...a really safe pair of hands." (Chambers HNW 2021)

Catherine is recognised as a key lawyer for Personal Tax, Trusts and Probate in the Legal 500 2022 Guide. 

"Catherine McAleavey has real gravitas, huge experience and a great manner with clients." (Legal 500 2022)

"Catherine McAleavey – very experienced, pragmatic, cuts to the heart of the issue, friendly, nice to work with." (Legal 500 2022)

Catherine is ranked Band 4 for Private Wealth Law in the Chambers High Net Worth  2021 Guide.

"She is very quick to respond, she is very intelligent and she is also a really trusted adviser to clients, and you can see that." (Chambers HNW 2021)

"She is absolutely amazing; she is really fabulous. She is adored by her clients, she is really thorough and intelligent." (Chambers HNW 2021)

"She is a stellar lawyer. She is technically excellent, she is super with clients and really pragmatic. She has great attention to detail, which is what I really like about her. She has a wealth of experience, she is wonderfully focused and can get to the heart of a problem and address it in a way that is beneficial for clients." (Chambers HNW 2021)

"She is very experienced and client-friendly." Chambers and Partners HNW 2020

“Catherine McAleavey is prized for her expertise on wills, probate, inheritance tax problems and trusts.” Chambers and Partners

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