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The Legal 500

Edwards Duthie Shamash are recognised in the Legal 500.

The Legal 500

The Legal 500

Edwards Duthie Shamash are proud to be recognised by the Legal 500 in the following:

Housing Team

A firm that specialises in a wide variety of legal aid work, Edwards Duthie Shamash provides expert advice across the full range of housing law, including homelessness and allocations, possession proceedings, disrepair and unlawful eviction. The team is particularly active in possession proceedings; it holds Housing Possession Court Duty Scheme contracts at three county courts. The ‘formidable’ James Harrison leads the team. ‘Exceptional communicator’ Simon Mullings became chair of the Housing Law Practitioners Association in 2020.

Practice head(s):

James Harrison

Other key lawyers:

Simon Mullings;


‘An amalgamation of two very good legal aid firms. Broad and active spectrum of work in the field, including pro bono interventions on important issues. Run exceptionally well – efficient, resourceful solicitors dedicated to their clients

Simon Mullings, James Harrison and Anna O’Connell are very experienced legal aid lawyers dealing with very vulnerable clients. Very good strategic and legal brains.’

‘Excellent team of caseworkers who combine a good depth and breadth of legal expertise with a determined commitment to achieving results for their clients.’

Work highlights

  • Acted for a client who was facing eviction from her local authority flat due to allegations of nuisance and hoarding. The case was defended using arguments under the Equality Act 2010.
  • Secured damages of some £35,000 for a client who was unlawfully evicted.
  • Acted for a number of individuals who have suffered loss as a consequence of a fire at the Barking Riverside development in June 2019. The fire started on a timber clad balcony and spread quickly to the neighbouring flats.

Crime Team

Counting the Labour Party amongst key clients, Edwards Duthie Shamash operates from offices in Waterloo, Ilford and Stratford. The firm’s general crime team is orchestrated by sex offences specialist Shaun Murphy and ‘star performers‘ Rakesh Bhasin and Robert Dynowski. Key cases have touched on the Representation of the People Act 1983, corporate manslaughter (the Grenfell Tower fire) and murder. Drugs offences, kidnapping, and terrorist matters are also pursued.

Practice head(s):

Shaun Murphy; Rakesh Bhasin; Robert Dynowski


‘A strong team of lawyers, who conduct their work to a very high standard. One of their major strengths is the quality of the solicitors, who all have good reputations within their peer group and the market place in general‘.

‘A very strong reputation for defending in “heavyweight” criminal cases, and, increasingly in financial crime too. They are an experienced and well regarded team’

‘Rakesh Bhasin is one of the best and most versatile criminal solicitors I know, whose ability with both client care and case management is first class. He is level headed, calm and has very good judgement’

COP Team

Associate Melissa Law joined Edwards Duthie Shamash from Mackintosh Law in November 2019 and leads the practice following Janice Kaufman’s retirement. The department represents protected parties and family members in complex health and welfare proceedings before the Court of Protection and the High Court. It is primarily instructed by the Official Solicitor, as well as paid relevant person’s representatives and other advocacy organisations, and predominantly acts in Mental Capacity Act cases and deprivation of liberty matters. Law is an accredited legal representative under the Law Society mental capacity accreditation scheme. Associate Laura Dawson also joined the firm from Mackintosh Law in March 2020.

Practice head(s):

Melissa Law

Other key lawyers:

Laura Dawson


‘It has grown into a really strong team with the merger of Edwards Duthie and Steel & Shamash. This brings a strong background in community care law to its welfare work in the Court of Protection, and the team now has the ability to involve other departments at EDS (housing, family, etc) where necessary‘

‘Melissa Law is great: always very responsive and thoughtful. Laura Dawson is also fantastic. Both are very good at going the extra mile to ensure the person they represent is given the best possible opportunity to participate in proceedings‘

Electoral Law

Edwards Duthie Shamash – the result of the 2019 merger of Edwards Duthie and Steel & Shamash – has broad expertise in the area of electoral law, handling important political litigation and advising on matters relating to parliamentary boundary inquiries, codes of conduct and reputation management. Gerald Shamash is highly regarded for his work for the Labour Party, advising on legislative proposals, parliamentary rules and the reformation of election law, and is described as ‘peerless‘, ‘a legend‘, ‘one in a million‘, and ‘the god of election law‘. Frances Randle is the local government solicitor to the Labour Party and has represented councillors before a wide range of panels and commissions across the UK.

Practice head(s):

Gerald Shamash

Other key lawyers:

Frances Randle


‘Gerald Shamash’s inside knowledge of clients and their needs is peerless. It gives him a sound tactical sense of where we are trying to go.’

‘Gerald Shamash is a leader in the field of understanding a political party’s legal needs.’

‘This is a dynamic team with unique insights into the inner workings of the Labour party and labyrinthine rules it works under. Top players at the top of their game. Gerald Shamash is a legend in his own lifetime.

Key clients

The Labour Party

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