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Toby Graham contentious trusts lawyer

Toby specialises in contentious trusts and estates, usually of high-value with international elements. He has recently been involved in trust disputes before courts in England, The Bahamas, Bermuda, BVI, Cayman, Cyprus, Guernsey, Jersey, New Zealand, Singapore, Switzerland and TCI.

Head of Farrer & Co’s contentious trusts and estates group, Toby has experience of a broad range of disputes such as third party claims; validity issues; breach of trust; Hastings Bass; applications for approval under VTA; disputes over investment performance; Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 and validity challenged to wills.

Toby works with an international network of experienced advisers, ensuring his clients receive first class advice within their jurisdiction.

Toby qualified as a solicitor in 1992 and joined Farrer & Co in 2007.

Memberships and Accolades

Toby is listed in the Private Client Global Elite 2021 directory, and was also listed in ALM's Private Client Global Elite 2019.

Toby is a member of the Trust Law Committee, the Chair of the STEP Contentious Trusts and Estates Special Interest Group and a member of the International Academy of Estate and Trust Law.

Toby has, since 2007, co-edited Trusts & Trustees (published by Oxford University Press), is a member of the editorial board of Wills & Trusts Law Reports; is a co-editor of "A Practical Guide to the Transfer of Trusteeships" (3rd ed, published by Globe Law and Business),  is the author of the course notes for the STEP Certificate in Trust Disputes (3rd edition),   the editor of International Guide to Money Laundering Law and Practice (2nd edition, Butterworths) and co-author (with Nicholas Elliott QC and Evan Bell) of 'Money Laundering' (2003, Butterworths Compliance Series). 


"Toby Graham is a very sound strategist and extremely experienced. Very nice to work with." (Legal 500 2024)

"Toby Graham has a wealth of knowledge and experience and offers a highly effective client-focussed approach." (Legal 500 2024)

"Toby is a superb solicitor at the top of this field. He is extremely focused on the needs and wishes of the client and works hard and intelligently to deliver on them. He would be my go-to partner in this field." (Chambers HNW 2023)

"Toby Graham is a stellar litigator, with a habit of identifying left-field arguments which advance cases very significantly." (Chambers HNW 2023)

"Toby Graham – massive experience and knowledge, combined with a debonair charm." (Legal 500 2023)

"Toby Graham is one of the best known partners in this field – he is hands on, really knows his trust law, has great judgment and is very good at managing very large scale litigation." (Legal 500 2023)

"Toby is simply a star performer. He brings a wealth of academic and practical knowledge and experience ... He is also extremely dedicated to achieving the client’s goals" (Legal 500 2023)

"... a superb operator at the top of his game ... with sources praising his 'unbelievable appetite for work' and 'tenantious' nature." (Chambers HNW 2022 - Private Wealth Disputes)

Toby is listed in the Hall of Fame for Contentious Trusts and Probate within the Legal 500 2022 directory.
"Toby Graham has a formidable reputation and fights hard for his clients." (Legal 500 2022)
"Toby Graham remains at the top of his game and combines natural charm with a steely edge." (Legal 500 2022)
"Toby Graham is at the top of his game and is able to comprehend and assist with absolute precision the challenges of each matter with a mix of absolute competence and reactivity and are a delight to work with." (Legal 500 2022)
"Toby Graham is an able and technical lawyer who knows a lot of law and enjoys looking at all angles of a dispute." (Legal 500 2022)
"Toby Graham has a top-notch understanding of the field and an unparalleled breadth of experience. He also has a relentless focus on the interests and wishes of his clients." (Legal 500 2022)
"Toby Graham – incredible work ethic and ability to run the biggest and most complicated litigation and keep momentum going. Great fun and an absolute battler for his clients." (Legal 500 2022)
"Toby Graham, while known principally for his work in contentious trusts, is also very strong in civil fraud. He is a great choice for a large civil fraud case, particularly one with a trusts dimension. His stand out feature from a client perspective is an absolute determination to deliver for the client." (Legal 500 2021)
"Toby Graham is an outstanding team leader and manager for large-scale litigation. He is strong across the board but I would say his standout attribute is a relentless focus on achieving what the client wants." (Legal 500 2021)
"The Rolls-Royce of private client litigation firms. Toby Graham stands out." (Legal 500 2021)

"Toby Graham is an excellent litigator in the trust and probate field with some very good support at associate level." (Legal 500 2021)

"Toby Graham has years of experience. He has a very deep knowledge of trusts and knows how to deal with private clients matters. He is a big asset for Farrers, and the people who have the chance to work with him are really lucky as he is a source of knowledge in the area of trusts." (Legal 500 2021)

Toby is ranked Band 1 for Private Wealth Disputes in the Chambers HNW 2021 Guide.

"Absolutely charming. An astute, clever and brilliant lawyer." (Chambers HNW 2021)

"Toby is an excellent leader and manager, marshalling the various elements of the team and ensuring that everyone remains focused on what matters most to the client." (Chambers HNW 2021)

Toby Graham is head of the firm's contentious trusts and estates group, and a barrister states that "he really is the best in London for this kind of work." One market source says: "He is intelligent, focused and very hard-working," while another source comments: "Toby is a force of nature and a truly brilliant solicitor." "He is brilliant with clients and so forceful on their behalf," notes an interviewee, who adds: "He is a real star performer." (Chambers HNW 2020)
"Toby Graham has "the best manner with lay clients of any solicitor - he has a wonderful way of making them feel confident in him." (Chambers UK)

"Sources describe him as 'a fantastic litigator with a major reputation in this market,' and he also wins praise for having 'a real understanding of trusts disputes.' Further interviewees describe Graham as 'a top-tier litigator - he is always a prominent speaker at seminars and has a serious reputation in the market'."

Toby was named the Private Client lawyer of the year (Who's Who Legal) (March 2014). Their research describes him as "the most highly regarded lawyer in our research" and "a 'pre-eminent' practitioner" who is "noted for his 'expert handling of complex multijurisdictional disputes'" who is "considered a 'point of reference' by many in the sector". He was the winner of the STEP "outstanding achievement" award (2007/8). 

Reported cases

Sir Owen George Glenn KNZM ONZM & Anor v Eric John Watson & Ors [2017] EWHC 256 (Ch) and [2016] EWHC 3346 (Ch) and [2016] EWHC 3259 (Ch).
Novatrust Limited v Kea Investments Limited and others [2014] EWHC 4061 (Ch)
Stiftung Salle Modulable (2) Rutli Stiftung v Butterfield Trust (Bermuda) Limited [2013] SC (Bda) 47 Civ and [2014] SC (Bda) 13 Com (21 February 2014)
Re Patarkatsishvilli, Deceased
Rybolovleva v Rybolovlev
Q v Q [2010] SC (Bda) 40 Civ
Gomez v Gomez-Monche Vives [2008] EWCA Civ 1065
Alhamrani v Alhamrani [2007] JCA 164 and others
Wingate v Butterfield Trust (Bermuda) Limited [2008] WTLR 543,
Weissfisch v Julius and others [2006] EWCA 218 Court of Appeal
A v A (Richards J, unreported) 2004 
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