Gareth specialises in civil and commercial law and private children law. He is based in Walsall and attends courts throughout the Midlands.
Clients appreciate his combination of excellent client care and straightforward, no-nonsense advice. His civil practice is enhanced by his master’s degree in Commercial Law, for which he was awarded a Distinction and came top of his cohort in Banking Law.
As a small business owner himself, he has a level of commercial awareness which gives him a deeper understanding of his clients' needs. His attention to detail and the depth of his research also win plaudits from clients.
Areas of law
- Civil Law
- Commercial Law
- Private Children Law
Civil & Commercial Law
Recent cases include:
- A shareholder dispute where two entrepreneurs were offered shares in a company in return for their work and ending their involvement with their own start-up companies. The dispute arose when the company's directors re-neged on the deal.
- Enforcement of an oral agreement for a contractor to step back from a property deal and forego ongoing fees for development in return for a percentage of future sale value. Complex issues of partnership also arose within this context.
- Defence of a claim to claw back fees paid under a consultancy agreement after termination through no fault of the defendant.
- Representing parties in private law children proceedings before all levels of the judiciary in the lower courts
- Advising and representing parties on appeal from first instance decisions
Away from court, Gareth makes the transition from barrister to barista as a self-confessed coffee snob. He roasts his own beans and tries in vain to avoid getting the next bit of kit. Gareth also works on his conversational Bengali so that he can speak to his mother-in-law more. Bangladeshi words for foods are a speciality.
Areas of Law
Gareth-Lee Smith is happy to accept instructions as counsel who is:
Very experienced in the areas of:
- Business & Commercial Law
- Consumer Contracts
Experienced in the following additional areas:
- Public Access Accredited
- Land & Property
- Business & Commercial Law
- Consumer Contracts
Training in this area in the following additional areas:
- Professional Negligence
- Business & Commercial Law
- Land & Property
Outside of these key areas of law, Gareth-Lee Smith is always willing to consider any enquiry requiring the experience or knowledge needed to help you or your client. Please call Gareth-Lee direct or the support team on 01823 247 247 if you would like to discuss any aspect of this profile.
Cases and Publications
Gareth regularly posts articles on his website (https://birmingham-barrister.com/articles) together with summaries of his cases (https://www.birmingham-barrister.com/my-cases).
Fees and Feedback
Details regarding our approach to fees can be found at the following link: http://www.clerksroom.com/content-html?cid=514
Please see “profile” tab for a description of the legal services provided by this barrister.
We aim to complete and return all paperwork within 14 days (2 weeks) of receipt if no specific deadline is provided. We can work to much faster timescales if requested or we can agree a specific target date for each individual circumstance. We will always advise at the outset if counsel is unable to meet any deadline.
Each barrister has a standard hourly rate for their work. The individual hourly rate can be agreed when instructions are acknowledged if preferred. We welcome early discussion as to the suitability of a specific barrister for a specific case. The right barrister will have the relevant expertise to deal with the case but will not be too junior, or too senior depending on the complexities.
We aim to allocate all cases to the correct level of experience & seniority which we believe will prove most to be the most cost-effective solution for our clients.
If, due to urgency, we allocate paperwork to a more senior member of Clerksroom, we will charge the appropriate hourly rate for the work, not for the barrister. We welcome early discussion to ensure the correct fee is applied to the case at the outset.
All our barristers are regulated by the Bar Standards Board (BSB) and hold a current practising certificate, details can be found at the following link Barristers’ Register
If you are not satisfied with the service provided, you can make a complaint to Chambers. Information on the chambers’ complaints procedure is available at the following link: http://www.clerksroom.com/content-html?cid=416
If you are not satisfied with the response you receive from my chambers, you can make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman. You must contact the Legal Ombudsman either within 6 months following the conclusion of our handling your complaint, within 6 years from the date of the act/omission, or 3 years from the date that you should reasonably have known there were grounds for complaint (if the act/omission took place before the 6 October 2010 or was more than six years ago).
The Legal Ombudsman’s details are as follows:
PO Box 6806
Tel: 0300 555 0333
1. This is a privacy notice that describes how, why and for how long I will process or keep your personal data in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation (‘GDPR’).
2. The GDPR governs how an individual’s personal data is used, and your rights in relation to that data.
3. I, Gareth-Lee Smith, have been instructed by you or your litigation friend (usually a parent), through your solicitor or agent, or via the Bar Pro Bono Unit.
4. It is necessary for me to process your personal data in order for me to provide you with legal services, for example:
· Advise on the prospects of litigation;
· Advise on the value of your claim;
· Representation at a court hearing;
· Representation at trial;
· Advise, review or comment on legal issues or evidence.
5. Processing means anything done to data such as: recording, organising, adapting, altering, copying, consulting, transmitting, combining, erasing or storing it.
6. The processing for the purposes listed above will take place in accordance with either Article 6(1)(a) GDPR or Article 6(1)(b) GDPR, depending on how you instructed me.
7. If you have instructed me on a direct access basis, or engaged a solicitor (or legal agent), to assist you in bringing or defending a claim then the processing is necessary to perform a contract to which you are a party (Article 6(1)(b) GDPR). To give effect to that contract (i.e. to bring a claim) it is necessary for me to process your personal data for litigation purposes.
8. If I am assisting you on a pro bono basis, it will be necessary for me to seek your consent to be able to represent you (Article 6(1)(a) GDPR). In this scenario, you will be sent a consent form.
Recipients of your data
9. I may also be required to share your data with others, depending on the nature of your case. This may include:
(i) Courts and other tribunals to whom documents are presented;
(ii) Your solicitors, or agent representing you, through whom I have been instructed;
(iii) Potential witnesses, experts and other persons involved in the case;
(iv) Solicitors, barristers, or other legal representatives;
(v) Ombudsman and regulatory authorities;
(vi) Education and examining bodies; and
(vii) Current, past or prospective employers.
Special Categories of Data
10. In some cases I will have been given your personal data that is within the ‘special categories’ of data described in GDPR Article 9(1). For example, personal data that reveals your race, ethnicity, sexual preferences, political or religious beliefs, trade union membership or health. There are also restrictions for processing information regarding criminal convictions.
11. This type of personal data will only be processed where it is necessary in order to represent you in your legal claim, or advise on the prospects of a legal claim.
12. I will retain your personal data for no longer than is necessary, and where it is possible, I will anonymise your data.
13. How long your personal data is kept will depend on a number of factors. The retention period will be reviewed when the service I am providing you with is complete. However in general, I am obliged by the Bar Code of Conduct to retain records of my cases, and by HM Revenue and Customs to retain records for 6 years.
14. Once your case has concluded and fees have been paid, I shall retain only the personal data necessary for the following purposes:
(i) The legal and professional obligation to retain information relating to my cases;
(ii) To check for any potential conflict of interests that may arise in the future when I am instructed on other cases;
(iii) For use in the defence of potential complaints, legal proceedings or fee disputes;
(iv) To refer back to in future cases which raise similar legal, factual, or procedural issues.
15. The processing for the purposes listed in paragraph 14 (ii), (iii), and (iv) above, will take place in accordance with Article 6(1)(f) GDPR. That is, for the purposes of legitimate interests that are not outweighed by your interests or fundamental rights and freedoms.
16. The processing for the purposes listed in paragraph 14(i) above, will take place in accordance with Article 6(1)(c) GDPR. That is, the processing is necessary for me to comply with a legal obligation.
17. Where processing of your personal data was based on your consent (see paragraphs 6 and 8) you have the right to withdraw that consent at any time. This does not affect the lawfulness of the processing based on consent before its withdrawal.
18. Withdrawal of your consent to process such data will most likely mean that I am no longer able to provide you with the legal services you seek.
19. You may request confirmation that your personal data is being processed by me and details about the personal data, the source, the processing, the purposes of the processing, the recipients and the retention period.
20. You may request a copy of your personal data that is being processed by me. You may also request rectification (i.e. correction) where there are inaccuracies in the personal data.
21. You have the right to object, on grounds relating to your particular situation, at any time, to processing of your personal data in paragraph 14 of this privacy notice. Should you object, the processing will only continue where there are compelling legitimate grounds for the processing which override your fundamental rights, freedoms and interests.
22. Where the processing or retention of your data is necessary for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims, it will not be possible to object.
23. You have the right to request that your personal data is erased where any of the following apply:
(i) The personal data are no longer necessary in relation to the purposes for which they were collected or otherwise processed;
(ii) You withdraw your consent where the basis of processing was based on consent and where there is no other ground for the processing;
(iii) Where your fundamental rights, freedoms and interests override the legitimate interests of processing in paragraph 14;
(iv) The personal data has been unlawfully processed; or
(v) The personal data have to be erased to comply with a legal obligation.
24. You have the right to request that your personal data is restricted from processing, so that it is simply stored, for the following reasons: as an alternative to deletion; so that it can be corrected; for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims; to verify if a legitimate ground exists (paragraph 14).
25. Where it is necessary to correct your personal data, or you have requested the restriction or erasure of your personal data, I shall endeavour to contact the recipients of the personal data, unless this involves disproportionate effort.
26. I take appropriate physical and technical procedures to safeguard your personal data to prevent it from being accidentally lost, used or accessed in an unauthorised way. The I.T. systems used by Clerksroom are ISO27001 compliant.
Complaints or Queries
27. If you have any questions regarding this privacy notice, or how I use your personal data please email me: Gareth.Smith@clerksroom.com, or my clerks: mail@clerksroom telephone 01823 247 247.
28. I shall aim to respond as soon as possible, and within 30 days.
29. You have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) if you believe I have not handled your request in an appropriate manner. For information on contacting the ICO please go to: https://ico.org.uk/global/contact-us/
FT, Direct Access Client Public Access
I enrolled the services of Gareth for a Family Court Case (2020) and what a difference this man made. His understanding of what was important just by reading the case files prepared for him was excellent. His communication in final preparation was empathic and thorough to the point I believed I would succeed before attending court. His command of the courtroom was a joy to watch and the cross examination of all parties Gareth performed was again superb. Gareth was calm and full of honest application, keeping me informed of all possibilities throughout the day in court. I may be biased as I won the case but this was very much down to the knowledge of law and the application of the law that Gareth brought to my case and it was most definitely money well spent. Very highly recommended!
Alec Hancock MJW Law
Gareth is beyond amazing. I was assisting a law firm with an issue, requiring relief from sanction on a matter and I needed Counsel. Gareth was recommended to me by Clerksroom. I’d never worked with Gareth before but it didn’t take long to install confidence in me. I would have no hesitation in instructing Gareth again, if anything, I would actively seek him out as a preference.
Jaskaran Dhillon Partner at D & N Solicitors
Gareth is a dedicated and well prepared Advocate who goes the extra mile to meet the client’s objectives. Would highly recommend in family law cases.