Simon Michaels


Personal Profile

Simon is a Partner at Mishcon Singapore and the CEO of MDR Mayfair Singapore. His focus is on advising prominent global high net-worth families, family offices and the institutions that service them, in particular private banks and trust companies. In addition to UK tax, he advises on all issues of family governance, succession and estate planning, often with a particular focus on effective and complex cross-border structuring with integrated tax planning. In addition to this, Simon has been involved in a number of high value, cross-border trust and estate disputes, acting both for trustees and beneficiaries. He is a dual qualified English barrister and solicitor advocate.

Simon was ranked as the only "Eminent Practitioner” by Chambers & Partners in 2018, 2019 and 2020 in Private Wealth Law in Singapore and has been listed as a leading individual in The Legal 500 and as a top-ranked private client lawyer in Chambers & Partners consistently since 2012.

Key Experience

  • Acted for some of the wealthiest (US$billion+) international individuals, families and family offices in SE Asia in respect of tax, succession, governance, philanthropy and holistic structuring
  • In personal capacity, acted as trust protector and personal advisor with prominent SE Asian families
  • Acted for various bank and trust institutions in Singapore, Hong Kong and Switzerland  in respect of tax, trust and contentious trust/probate matters
  • Assisted with the tax regularisation of non-compliant individuals (US voluntary disclosure, Liechtenstein Disclosure Facility)
  • Assisted with initiative, strategy, implementation and use of the Liechtenstein Disclosure Facility
  • UK-specific tax advice (domicile, residency, immigration and migration, structuring and de-enveloping UK real estate, utilisation of various UK Inheritance Tax reliefs and Double Taxation Agreements)
  • Advising in respect of Shariah forced-heirship rules both within and outside Singapore and integrated trust planning

Career History

Partner, Mishcon de Reya LLP
Foreign Law Consultant, Withers KhattarWong LLP
Partner, Withers LLP
Partner, Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP
Senior Associate, Baker & McKenzie. Wong & Leow
Solicitor, Wiggin Osborne Fullerlove
Barrister, Holman Fenwick & Willan
Pupillage, 1 Gray’s Inn Square

Appointments and Publications

  • Guest lecturer at National University of Singapore (2011)
  • Panel member of Ministry of Law roundtable in respect of the potential introduction of arbitration clauses in Singapore trust legislation (2012)
  • Honorary Auditor, Singapore Trustee Association (2019 – 2021)
  • Has banking secrecy come to an end in Singapore?”, The Business Times (8 June 2010)
  • Talib v Talib: Property devolution dispute in which common law took precedence over Shariah law”, Trusts and Estates Law & Tax Journal (September, 2010)
  • Wealthy Families in Asia – Passing On and Preserving Wealth”, Wealth Briefing Asia (October 2013)
  • Investing into UK property”, Q Report, Issue No.2 / 2013



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