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Elite Law Solicitors incorporates HM Law Costs Draftsmen Ltd and

Meet the Team

Our success is largely due to our team of experienced Solicitors, Costs Lawyers, Draftsmen and dedicated support staff. The stability and strength in depth of the company is reflected in the fact that most of our key staff have been together for a considerable period of time, some for in excess of 15 years.

As with any professional organisation, training and continuing education are essential. At Elite Law Solicitors we are committed to the ongoing development of our team. You can be sure that whoever is assigned to your matter they will have the knowledge and experience to deal with it professionally, quickly and accurately.

Esmer Aljkanovic
Partner & Costs Lawyer

After obtaining an Economics degree, Esmer went on to complete his Graduate Diploma in Law and Legal Practice Course at the College of Law.

Esmer started his career in costs at a well known national law firm, as part of the in-house team. He went on to complete his training and studies on the ACL and qualified as a Costs Lawyer in 2015.

From his time working in-house for two large personal injury law firms, Esmer has gained a wealth of experience in all types of personal injury claims, from low value RTAs to complex high value industrial disease claims.

Esmer has a particular interest in the development of costing software, in order to deliver an innovative and market leading approach with the highest level of quality standards for his clients.

Esmer can be contacted by email at

Abraam Azir
Trainee Solicitor

Abraam is experienced in dealing with all areas of costs with particular focus on receiving party work in complex clinical negligence, personal injury and industrial disease matters. Abraam is proficient in dealing with the entire detailed assessment and costs management process and is routinely involved in high value complex cases, where costs are significant.

Abraam often provides bespoke advices to clients in matters where the normal costs provisions do not automatically apply. He is a skilled negotiator and provides pragmatic and commercial advice to ensure the best results for his clients.

Abraam utilises his experience and legal knowledge to offer a tailored service to his clients and assistance to his colleagues. In addition to Abraam's fee earning responsibilities, he also works with clients in order to help them improve internal procedures and maximise their costs recovery.

Abraam started his training contract to become a Solicitor in 2019.

Abraam can be contacted by email at

Vanessa Brown
Costs Lawyer

Following completion of her degree in Microbiology Vanessa went on to study physical geography, during which time she taught surveying and cartography as well as supervising field trips for undergraduate geography students.

Vanessa embarked on a legal costs career when she joined HM Law Costs Draftsmen in 1995. She now deals with a full spectrum of inter partes and publicly funded claims for costs.

Vanessa specialises in multi-party complex commercial claims and also deals with very high cost case plans.

Vanessa can be contacted by email at

Eve Cooke
Conveyancing Executive

Eve is a Conveyancing Executive with over 15 years of various property experience. Eve specialises in all aspects of residential property including acting on behalf of clients selling and buying high value properties in Kent and the South of England. Eve was previously a Partner and Head of the Residential Property Department at the Sevenoaks office of a Legal 500 Firm.

Eve deals with the following types of matter:

- Sale & Purchase of Freehold and Leasehold Properties

- New Build Purchases

- Re-Mortgages

- Transfers of Equity

- Auction Sales & Purchases

- Unregistered Land

- Shared Ownership Leases

- Lease Extensions/Deeds of Variation

- Deputy/Attorney Sales & Purchases.

Eve believes that Conveyancing should be a smooth and stress free process and aims to try and provide this for her clients by offering a pro-active, attentive and bespoke service.

Eve can be contacted by email at

Christopher Dolton
Family Solicitor & Mediator

Chris has been a solicitor for over 30 years having read Law at Exeter University. He specialises in a wide range of family law matters, including divorce, financial matters arising from separation and arrangements for children.

He has considerable knowledge and practical know- how of court proceedings, often undertaking his own advocacy and has dealt with a wide range of cases, including high value cases. He is a member of Resolution a nationally recognised association for family lawyers which promotes high standards and a constructive approach to family cases and is recognised by Resolution as an accredited specialist in both advocacy in financial cases and children cases. He is also a member of the Law Society’s Family Law panel

He also recognises that family law cases often involve highly charged emotional issues which require sensitive handling and that an aggressive approach to such matters can often be counter productive, exacerbating what can be an already difficult situation. He is a keen promoter of alternatives to court process as a means of resolving such issues. He qualified over ten years ago as a collaborative lawyer, a process which enables separating couples to work together with their lawyers to resolve the problems that confront them, avoiding the expense and bitterness that court proceedings can create and, importantly, allowing the couple to make their own decisions as to the way forward.

Chris is also accredited by the Family Mediation Council as a family mediator and is able to bring to the mediation process his considerable experience and knowledge as a family lawyer.

Chris joined Elite as a consultant to develop and promote family law within the practice.

Chris can be contacted by email at

Ian Durham
Costs Lawyer

Ian’s first career was in banking. He embarked on a new career as a trainee costs draftsman in 2003 and became a Associate Member of the Law Costs Draftsman on 1st August 2008. He subsequently qualified as a Costs Lawyer in June 2011.

Ian’s work involves the preparation of bills and schedules of costs and costs budgets in civil matters, with a particular specialism in historic abuse cases.

Ian can be contacted by email at

Hayley Forster
Costs Draftsman

Hayley first started costs drafting in 2000. She went on to become a Fellow of the Association of Law Costs Draftsmen in 2007.

Hayley initially trained with one of the UK’s leading providers of claims services to insurers and other compensators before working in house for a firm of solicitors. She joined HM Law Costs Draftsmen in 2011.

Hayley has a wealth of experience in preparing publicly funded claims for costs and specialises in family and care matters, including Very High Costs Case Plans. 

Hayley can be contacted by email at

Tabassum Hoque

Tabassum started her legal career as a paralegal in 2007 with a well-known national Defendant law firm specialising in Personal Injury Litigation, but also practised in Family Law.

Tabassum started her career in costs in 2011 as a Costs Draftsman as part of an in-house team. She then went on to expand her career by moving to London and working in the City at a costs firm followed by another in-house role at another well-known Defendant national law firm. She qualified as a Solicitor in 2016.

Tabassum has gained a wealth of experience in all types of personal injury claims and has specialised in Defendant matters. She has also gained vast experience in high value shipping cases, Libel/Defamation Cases, Aviation & Travel Litigation, Professional Negligence, Product Liability cases, Clinical Negligence and also dealt with Criminal Prosecution in Clinical Negligence.

Tabassum can be contacted by email at

Stephen Howey
Senior Partner & Costs Lawyer

Stephen has been a Costs specialist for over 30 years. He became a Fellow of the ACL in 1994 and was awarded the Edis Cup for the highest mark of the year. Stephen is a former Council Member and Treasurer of the ACL and was one of the first draftsmen to obtain the status of Costs Lawyer, with rights of audience and the right to conduct costs litigation (a reserved legal activity). 

In 1990 Stephen went into partnership with John Mistri and created HM Law Costs Draftsmen (now Elite Law Solicitors), which practiced successfully for over 20 years. 

Stephen specialises in the preparation of Bills in clinical negligence, catastrophic personal injury and commercial matters. 

Nicola Mooney, Partner at McMillan Williams, described Stephen as “efficient, quick and gave a very good steer on negotiations resulting in a great outcome on a difficult case.”

Stephen can be contacted by email at

Rebecca Humble
Costs Lawyer

Rebecca joined Elite Law in June 2017, having worked in the profession for more than fifteen years. She is a former tutor for the Association of Costs Lawyers and began her career in her home county of Yorkshire, working in-house at a reputable personal injury firm before moving to London to work in-house at a leading international commercial law firm, where she was promoted to Head of Costs.

Rebecca has worked on several high profile, media sensitive cases, in respect of both Claimant and Defendant costs and is routinely instructed in high value, complex matters including catastrophic injuries and group litigation, with a particular focus on medical negligence and industrial disease.

Rebecca has a particular interest in matters held in the Court of Protection and also has experience dealing with costs arising from arbitration, dispute resolution, professional negligence, property disputes and other commercial matters.

Outside work Rebecca enjoys dog walking with her two cocker spaniels and is busy renovating a cottage in Devon.

Rebecca can be contacted by email at

Katerina Irodotou

Katerina studied Law at the University of Surrey and completed the Legal Practice Course alongside an MSc in Law and Business Management at the University of Law.

Katerina then worked as a trainee advocate and legal consultant at an international firm and passed the BAR exams of the Legal Council of the Republic of Cyprus.

Katerina has gained experience in corporate and commercial matters as she dealt on a daily basis with formation and buyouts of companies, corporate finance transactions, security documentation, loan documentation, mergers and acquisitions, liquidations and more.

Katerina also made her first steps in litigation as she drafted various pleading documents and appeared in front of judges to ask for time, directions and even presented her clients' cases.

Katerina can be contacted by email at

Siraj Khan

Siraj started his legal costs career in 2009 with an in-house role at a London based firm of solicitors following the completion of his LLB Law degree and the Legal Practice Course. He then moved to HM Law Costs in April 2011.

As a Costs Lawyer and Chartered Legal Executive, Siraj is dual qualified and is well versed in the preparation of Bills of Costs, Points of Dispute, Replies to Points of Dispute and Precedent H Costs Budgets. Siraj represents clients both in the justification and opposition of costs and has extensive experience of high value personal injury, clinical negligence and commercial litigation matters. He also attends costs related application hearings, directions hearings and represents clients in Solicitors Act matters.

In his spare time Siraj enjoys spending time with his family. He is a keen football fan and organises Bedfordshire's largest annual 5-a-side charity football tournament, raising money for various charitable causes.

Siraj can be contacted by email at

Joe Lewis

Following qualification as a Solicitor in March 2016 at a reputable national law firm Joe joined Elite in November 2016 to be part of the Property Team.

Joe deals with residential property transactions including sales, purchases and transfers for both leasehold and freehold properties.

Outside of work Joe enjoys going to the gym and is an avid football fan.

Joe can be contacted by email at

Samantha MacNamara
Property Solicitor

Samantha is a Solicitor and has been working in property law since 2013 having qualified as a Solicitor in 2015. Sam specialises in all aspects of residential property but has previously worked in commercial property. Having worked in commercial and residential it means Samantha has a broad knowledge of all aspects of property law.

Samantha was previously head of a conveyancing team at a Legal 500 Firm.

Samantha deals with the following types of matter:

- Sale & Purchase of Freehold and Leasehold Properties

- New Build Purchases

- Re-Mortgages

- Transfers of Equity

- Auction Sales & Purchases

- Unregistered Land

- Lease Extensions/Deeds of Variation

- Deputy/Attorney Sales & Purchases.

- Second Charges

- HMO and Student Accommodation

Samantha prides herself on providing a personal service to all her clients to ensure their transactions go through as smoothly and “stress free” as possible.

Outside of work Samantha enjoys the theatre, travelling and supporting charitable events.

Sam can be contacted by email at

Shakeel Mir
Partner & Head of Property

Shakeel qualified in 1990 and as a high street practitioner he obtained experience in a variety of areas of law. Over the last few years he has concentrated on Property Law having worked in both regional firms and firms in central London.

Having found that he enjoyed Property Law he now specialises in this area. This includes both residential and commercial property transactions for both individual and commercial clients.

For homeowners he can help you in the sale and/or purchase of your residential property and deal with the extension of your lease if this is required.

If you are a business owner he can assist with the purchase and sale of business premises and commercial properties such as shops, offices and warehouses. If you are taking on a business lease, or are a commercial landlord who wants to grant a new lease to a tenant he can help you with this.

He can also advise on other property related non contentious matters, such as transfer of part of land.

Whether you are buying or selling your home for the first time or have bought before, or are taking on your first shop lease or you are a seasoned business person who has been involved in commercial property for many years, Shakeel will try and help in making your transaction as smooth and painless as possible.

Outside work Shakeel enjoys the theatre, world cinema, travel and skiing.

Shakeel can be contacted by email at

John Mistri
Senior Partner, Costs Lawyer & Accredited Mediator

John started his career in 1982. Like Stephen he is a past Council member of the ACL where he was responsible for education and was one of the first draftsmen to obtain the status of Costs Lawyer. 

John regularly provides seminars to clients on the impact of new rules and changes to costs litigation. 

John specialises in advocacy and complex matters with a particular interest in solicitor and own client and non-contentious disputes. He is responsible for the supervision of all Detailed Assessment hearings in the SCCO and other regional and County Courts attending many of those hearings personally. John has been involved in very high value assessments, prepared expert evidence for security for costs claims and has been involved in numerous high value group litigation claims. He also assisted with the highest valued claim from public funds in the Isle of Man. 

Virginia Ralfe, Director at City Lawyers has described John’s approach as “clear and pragmatic” and that his help was “greatly appreciated in helping to defeat a number of arguments raised by the paying party”. She also believed that John was “very helpful in that the opposing party was respectful of his knowledge and sensible approach which assisted in enabling a settlement to be achieved”.

John is also an ADR Group Accredited Civil & Commercial Mediator and can assist in a variety of disputes.

John can be contacted by email at

Sue Nash
Costs Lawyer & Senior Consultant

Sue has been practicing in legal costs for over 30 years and is well known for her specialist experience in group litigation as well as costs budgeting. She is a former chairman of the Association of Costs Lawyers and a leading authority on costs. As a result she writes regularly for the legal press on costs-related issues. 

As well as co-founding specialist costs consultancy (Group) Litigation Costs Services, she created and founded Omnia Legal Software, the first secure web-based program offering a costs budgeting and management service as an ‘add-on’. 

Sue joined Elite in January 2017 to not only expand our group litigation services and provide consultancy and training on all aspects of costs but also to assist in the development of current and future offerings such as legal project management, pricing and auditing. 

She has been described (by an opponent) as “a breath of fresh air” in dealing with costs negotiations and commended for her “impressive costs knowledge and attention to detail” (Alex Hutton QC)

Sue can be contacted by email at

Kyle Perreaux
Conveyancing Executive

As an Associate member of CILEX, Kyle is continuing his training towards qualification as a Legal Executive. Having spent most of his career to date working in and around the Brighton & Hove area, Kyle was delighted to be invited to help launch Elite Law’s new Hove office.

Kyle oversees a range of residential property transactions including sales, purchases, and re-mortgages of both freehold and leasehold properties. Kyle also assists with more specialist areas such as bridging and development finance, equity release and other more commercial loans.

Outside of work Kyle enjoys going the gym, clay shooting and getting his hands dirty with small-scale property development projects.

Kyle can be contacted by email at

Mark Richardson
Costs Lawyer

Mark began his legal costs career at a national law costs drafting company in 1989. He subsequently joined HM Law Costs Draftsmen in 2006.

Mark became an associate member of the Association of Law Costs Draftsmen in 1995 and subsequently qualified as a Costs Lawyer in 2010 with rights of audience and the right to conduct costs litigation, which is a reserved legal activity.

Mark specialises in the preparation of publicly funded claims for costs in family, care and civil matters together with the preparation of Very High Costs Case Plans. Mark is also an expert in the preparation of inter partes Bills of Costs. 

Mark can be contacted by email at

James Scozzi
Managing Partner of Elite Law & Past President of Surrey Law Society

James started his professional career as a Costs Draftsman in 2001 firstly for a well-known national law firm and thereafter for HM Law Costs Draftsmen. 

He subsequently qualified as a Solicitor and worked for McMillan Williams (MW) as the Head of the Costs Department and subsequently as Head of Revenue Generation. Whilst at MW James was responsible for supervising costs aspects relating to all fee earners practicing in the areas of personal injury, clinical negligence, family, civil and professional negligence. James was also part of the management team that dealt with MW’s expansion from a small high street practice to a practice employing over 250 staff at 16 branches.

James specialises in high value complex matters with a particular interest in clinical negligence. 

In 2016 he was shortlisted as Lawyer of the Year by the Modern Law Awards and is currently Past President of the Surrey Law Society. 

James has been described as “straight talking, no-nonsense and above all commercial. I cannot recommend him highly enough” (Michael Turner, Solicitor and Part time District Judge & Recorder)

James can be contacted by email at

Kashera Swaby
Consultant Costs Draftsman

Kashera is experienced in handling clinical negligence, catastrophic personal injury and commercial matters. Kashera read law at university and went on to study the LPC and LL.M at the University of Law.

Prior to joining Elite, Kashera worked in-house for a national firm where she prepared bills of costs for detailed assessment and advised on an array of costs related matters; streamlining cost management procedures and optimising cost recovery.

Kashera’s work involves the preparation of bills, points of dispute and cost budgeting.

Kashera can be contacted by email at

Georgina Swift
Property Law Assistant

Georgina completed her Law degree at the University of Sussex and is developing her practical legal skills by assisting the other members of the property team in our Hove office.

In her spare time, she enjoys riding her horse, socialising with friends and spending time with her dogs.

Georgina can be contacted by email at

Danielle Syed

Danielle studied Law at Oxford Brookes University, following which she commenced working within Lyons Davidson Solicitors.

Whilst working Danielle completed the Legal Practice Course at the College of Law, London Bloomsbury.

Danielle also gained experience as a MOJ case handler after leaving Lyons Davidson Solicitors.

Danielle joined Elite Law in August 2015 and after completing her training contract qualified as a Solicitor in November 2018 specialising in Wills, Trusts & Probate.

Danielle can be contacted by email at

Heidi Taylor
Costs Draftsman

Heidi has over 4 years’ experience working in the legal sector developing her practical legal skills, having previously worked in a long-standing high-street firm.

Heidi sits in our Guildford office and is currently training as a Costs Draftsman whilst working towards completing her formal qualifications and developing her knowledge of Costs Law.

In her spare time, she enjoys going to the gym, cooking and socialising with friends.

Heidi can be contacted by email at

Craig Tanner
Property Solicitor

Following qualification in 2018 in a Legal 500 Firm Craig has specialised in all aspects of residential property to assist first time buyers and companies with a residential property portfolio alike.

Craig offers a bespoke personal service to make the conveyancing process as stress free and smooth as possible.

Craig can be contacted by email at

Harry Tuke
Senior Property Solicitor

Harry qualified as a Solicitor in 2009 and has a wealth of experience in property law and property finance.

Having spent a number of years specialising in residential conveyancing, small-medium sized developments and light commercial work, Harry launched a ‘Borrower Bridging’ Department at his previous firm in 2016 with a view to streamlining the work required for bridging loans, meeting necessary deadlines and maximising client satisfaction. Harry has acted for countless different borrowers on a variety of different loans ranging from relatively small £30k bridging loans to multi-million pound development loans, and everything in between.

These kinds of loans are specialist areas which shouldn’t be dabbled in. Harry regularly works with all of the main lenders so is familiar with their usual requirements and has good lines of communication with their lawyers, all of which helps to avoid any unnecessary delays.

More recently, Harry launched an Equity Release team to specialise in Lifetime Mortgages, again with the intention of streamlining the process, pre-empting any issues and providing best possible care and service levels to clients.

Equity Release mortgages are becoming an increasingly popular choice for the over 55s to release equity from their home, but these types of mortgage must be entered into carefully. Harry has overseen the completion of multiple different equity release schemes and understands the importance of keeping clients informed at every step of the way. Harry offers a professional, friendly and efficient service to ensure a stress-free completion.

Outside of work, Harry enjoys spending time in and around Sussex with his family.

Harry can be contacted by email at

Meg Wilton
Head of the Private Client Department

Meg was admitted as a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives in 2008 and has been working in private client practice in the local area since 2001.

Meg joined Elite Law in August 2017 as the Head of the Private Client Department and is based in our Amersham Office.

Meg undertakes the following work:

  • preparation of Wills and Trusts
  • preparation of Lasting Powers of Attorneys
  • applications to the Court of Protection
  • advising Trustees, attorneys and deputies
  • administration of Trusts
  • administration of Estates

Meg can be contacted by email at

Joanna Williams
Head of Legal Costs Services & Costs Draftsman

Jo’s first career was as a Senior Registered Sick Children’s Nurse at Great Ormond Street Hospital. Jo is also qualified as an Adult Education Tutor and designed and ran childcare training courses suitable for new parents, nursery workers and child minders for Buckinghamshire County Council.

Jo also sat as an advisory Board member for a UK branch of an international health care product company.

Subsequently Jo embarked on a new career as a Costs Draftsman and joined HM Law Costs Draftsmen (now Elite Law Solicitors) in 1999. She predominantly deals with the preparation of Bills of Costs, with a particular interest in Very High Cost Case Plans in complex publicly funded matters. As a result of Jo’s attention to detail, excellent drafting skills and copious experience she was appointed as our Head of Legal Costs Services in 2015.

Kirti Patel, Partner at CLP has described Jo as a “an amazing fount of knowledge when it comes to the LAA and is always very helpful in preparing responses to various queries raised by the LAA”

Joanna can be contacted by email at