About Us

A law firm designed to make expert legal advice
more accessible for ambitious and entrepreneurial businesses.

Established in 2014 by Toby Harper, our founder and CEO, Harper James is a new breed of commercial law firm.

Our purpose is as clear now as it was in 2014 – we want to enable growth-oriented small and medium-sized businesses to succeed. We do this by delivering top-quality and accessible legal services and acting as partners in our clients’ journeys while operating according to our unique values.

We work nationally with start-ups through to unicorns and long-running established businesses that may now be looking to scale or looking to exit.

The Harper James model of highly experienced remote-working lawyers, clever use of technology coupled with unique subscription plans and fixed fee products, enables us to provide cost effective business legal services without compromising on quality, quite the contrary.

Like many of our clients, we are ambitious and we have high aspirations for the future. Our vision is of a world where all viable businesses thrive and contribute to a healthy economy through access to excellent legal services that are delivered by firms whose people enjoy a true work-life balance.

We’re proud of our roots and encourage you to find out why and how Toby Harper set up the firm.

How we support our clients

A service designed to give you legal peace of mind

We’re a full-service business law firm with a difference. Our experienced partner-level solicitors support our clients with expert legal advice at fees that start from £145 per hour, a fraction of the cost of traditional law firms.

Unique subscription plans 

Access legal support through our subscription plans, Enterprise and On-Demand, to help you spread the cost of advice and get discounted rates – providing you with flexibility, peace of mind and plans that can scale with your business.

Fixed fee products

We offer a suite of fixed fee legal products, which are designed to provide transparent, cost-effective support to solve common issues. Whether you need help reviewing your commercial lease, planning your next funding round, protecting your IP or staying compliant with UK GRPR and employment law, we’ve got you covered.

Exceptionally experienced solicitors

With few exceptions, our lawyers have previously worked for top 100 UK law firms or as in-house lawyers in a wide range of businesses. Many have achieved partner level and the average post-qualified experience is 17 years. They all have a passion for supporting businesses and a deep understanding of how the law should be applied in the ‘real world’. This is hugely important to our clients whose focus, understandably, needs to be on achieving their business growth plans.

Quality enabled by technology

Our innovative use of cloud-based technology ensures efficiency in remote working and service delivery, which helps us ensure our clients receive the highest quality legal support and advice available.

Maintaining low overheads

We are able to offer accessible pricing by keeping our most expensive asset, our lawyers, focused on supporting clients with their legal needs. Other activities that would typically weigh down a lawyer’s workload, such as legal administration, business development and marketing, are carried out by others in the business. Minimising office space through our remote operating model represents another cost efficiency that benefits our clients.

Dedicated client services team

Our subscription clients are supported by our dedicated client services team with very experienced solicitors, who have a combined legal experience of 80+ years. Through regular review meetings they will get to know you and your business and help you identify current and future legal needs. As needs arise, they match you with solicitors with the relevant skills and availability and ensure our service levels meet your expectations. We do this free of charge. Our client services team has a genuine interest in your business, and it will act as a single point of contact and ensure that legal engagements run smoothly, on budget and on time.

Attracting the best talent

We champion flexible working for everyone at Harper James and the reciprocal benefits allow our business model to run as cost effectively and smoothly as it does.

Full service law firm

Our business lawyers provide expert commercial advice on any legal issues you may be facing at any stage of your business’ life cycle, from the big idea stage through to starting-up, getting on with it, scaling-up and exit. Our services include anything from commercial and contractual law to corporate, employment, business disputes, commercial property, banking and finance, IT & commercial technology, data protection, intellectual property, insolvency, and equity incentive arrangements.

National coverage

We are a national commercial law firm and thanks to our unique operating model, we can help your business wherever you are. We are happy to meet at our offices, your offices or at a location of your choice. While we predominantly work remotely, our team has access to offices and meeting facilities in Sheffield, Birmingham, Manchester, Oxford, Cambridge, and London. If we don’t have an office near you, we’re always happy to visit you at a location of your choice.

Our commitment to clients

We have a clear set of guiding principles, which are at the core of how we support our clients.

Accessible and scalable

Accessible and scalable

Making legal advice available when you need it from very experienced lawyers at a fair price. Having a point of contact takes the weight off your shoulders as the ‘problem’ or requirement can be dealt with effectively. Our legal team can be scaled up or down depending on your needs.

An extension of your team

An extension of your team

Replicating in-house legal support designed to mitigate risk and maximise opportunity. An objective friend, our lawyers are impartial advisors, empowering you to make the right decisions for your business. Our clients don’t just subscribe to legal services, they subscribe to a professional and enduring relationship.

Industry experts

Industry experts

Our service is delivered by lawyers who understand how businesses operate in the real world, with many coming from industry themselves. We match your ambitions and guide you through the process as we have done it many times before and provide reassurance and certainty: of cost and of quality of advice.

Enablers

Enablers

We are focused on enabling your success by helping you get it right from the start so you can achieve your own ambitions and growth plans for your business when you are ready.


Taking into account the impact of our operations

We are committed to being a responsible and sustainable business that delivers positive impact for our employees, clients, profession, environment and the communities we live and work in. Harper James is a people oriented firm with a strong culture and values, and we are determined to provide opportunities for everyone to succeed regardless of their socio-economic background, race, religion, age, gender, sexual orientation or disability. View a summary of the latest Harper James diversity profile.

Our values

A unique law firm culture

We are very proud of our unique culture. This is lived through everyone in the business in how we work with each other and our clients each day. 

Our values at a glance

  1. We practise flexibility without judgement.
  2. Everyone feels trusted and supported in every aspect of their job. We can do this because everyone is responsible, productive and wants to succeed.
  3. We are relaxed and informal, but super organised. No power-dressing is required, neither is jargon. Say it like it is and do what you say you’ll do.
  4. No politics. People don’t feel like they have to get one over on their colleagues to succeed. If people around us succeed, so do we.
  5. We love to celebrate HJ and each other. There’s no room for big egos though!
  6. We recognise the hardest conversations are the ones we should always have. Handled with openness so we can focus on the solution.
  7. We make decisions with compassion, integrity and responsibility.

Protecting our culture and life at Harper James for everyone is a top priority for us and we do this by embedding and staying true to our values in all that we do.

Our people

Our team works together for one purpose – our clients

We’re united in supporting our clients to achieve success throughout the life cycle of their business.

Our senior leadership team oversees the day-to-day support for our clients, the running of our business and work to achieve our commercial objectives.

Toby is the Founder & CEO of Harper James Solicitors, as well as a corporate & commercial solicitor. He specialises in venture capital and the tech sector.
Ashley is the Legal Services Director at Harper James, responsible for the delivery of quality legal support for our clients. Ashley is also a solicitor, arbitrator and mediator who joined Harper James from DLA Piper where he spent 28 years, 22 as a partner.
Adam is Chief Legal Officer & Head of Corporate, responsible for the legal services aspects of Harper James.
Ben is a dual-qualified solicitor and Chartered Trade Mark Attorney (qualifying in 2016) and assists clients with trade mark clearance searching, brand strategy and world wide trade mark protection as well as dealing with a range of intellectual property disputes and litigation.
Craig's primary focus is on leveraging advanced technologies, particularly AI, to enhance operational efficiency and client service. His responsibilities include developing sophisticated tools, leading the technology strategy, managing system integrations, and providing robust tech support to the team.
Ian joined our dispute resolution team in 2016 and has over 25 years of experience in handling a broad range of commercial disputes.
Jill has specialised in intellectual property protection, dispute resolution, brand and reputation management for over 20 years, having qualified as a solicitor in 1994. Prior to joining Harper James she was a Partner with Blake Morgan who she joined in 1999.
John assists clients with a wealth of specialist knowledge in financial services regulation, payment services, electronic money, consumer credit, and anti-money laundering legislation.
Pam has over 20 years’ experience within private practice and industry. Pam is an expert in landlord and tenant law and has considerable experience in a wide range of commercial property work from portfolio management through to investment and development work. 
Samantha qualified as a solicitor in 2001, she has been advising entrepreneurial businesses on their employee and management ownership programmes for more than 20 years. 
As a previous partner at DLA Piper, Sarah comes with a rich pedigree in providing expert commercial services for her clients.
Simon acts for employers of all sizes, particularly tech and manufacturing, and specialises in managing people matters, including TUPE, sales and acquisitions of companies, and restructures/redundancies.
With over 24 years’ experience advising on commercial matters, Stephen brings a wealth of technology expertise having previously worked in-house as senior counsel to BT before joining private practice.

Work with like-minded individuals

Careers at Harper James

In line with our ambitious growth plans, we are always looking for talented lawyers and other professionals to join our team. While our lawyers and some other teams work remotely, we work very hard to ensure everyone feels part of a team so they can collaborate, share ideas and enjoy each other’s company. We want our people to feel that they are part of an ambitious organisation and that their contribution towards our growth is recognised individually and as a team.

We offer career opportunities for all levels of experience to meet and evolve with individual needs, whether that means intellectually stimulating work for interesting and inspiring clients, building and leading a team or an opportunity to accelerate a career in a role supported by an experienced mentor.

Testimonials

What our clients say

Harper James provides my small growing business with a scalable, reliable, team-oriented approach to legal advice. Whenever we face a problem, I know that Harper James are there to provide helpful and cost-effective advice, to scope out the options, make clear the costs and risks, and give me the information I need to make decisions.
Bryn Richards CEO, Aeristech
As a University spin-out getting the right team of lawyers to support our emerging business was fundamental and the team are always available to provide us with the invaluable guidance and support we require.
David Hodgson CEO, Amalyst
Our longstanding relationship has enabled us to get deals over the line quickly and efficiently, with minimum fuss or kickback from opposing lawyers representing the companies we’re investing in. I find the legal team at Harper James efficient, smart and personable. Speed is of the essence for early stage investing and Harper James recognises this and acts accordingly.
Kieran Hill COO, Ascension Ventures
The team at Harper James have demonstrated time and again that they have a deep understanding of the issues facing entrepreneurial businesses and their funding.
Charles Smith Director, Interpac Limited
They adopted a proactive approach to overcoming issues, and their knowledge of the sector and investors and preparedness to identify novel solutions has proved extremely beneficial.
Charles Smith Director, Interpac Limited
Harper James swiftly solves problems with a minimum of fuss. I strongly recommend them and they are a pleasure to work with.
Jean de Fougerolles CEO, Ascension Ventures
Harper James provides my small growing business with a scalable, reliable, team-oriented approach to legal advice. Whenever we face a problem, I know that Harper James are there to provide helpful and cost-effective advice, to scope out the options, make clear the costs and risks, and give me the information I need to make decisions.
Bryn Richards CEO, Aeristech
As a University spin-out getting the right team of lawyers to support our emerging business was fundamental and the team are always available to provide us with the invaluable guidance and support we require.
David Hodgson CEO, Amalyst
Our longstanding relationship has enabled us to get deals over the line quickly and efficiently, with minimum fuss or kickback from opposing lawyers representing the companies we’re investing in. I find the legal team at Harper James efficient, smart and personable. Speed is of the essence for early stage investing and Harper James recognises this and acts accordingly.
Kieran Hill COO, Ascension Ventures
The team at Harper James have demonstrated time and again that they have a deep understanding of the issues facing entrepreneurial businesses and their funding.
Charles Smith Director, Interpac Limited
They adopted a proactive approach to overcoming issues, and their knowledge of the sector and investors and preparedness to identify novel solutions has proved extremely beneficial.
Charles Smith Director, Interpac Limited
Harper James swiftly solves problems with a minimum of fuss. I strongly recommend them and they are a pleasure to work with.
Jean de Fougerolles CEO, Ascension Ventures

Press

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Our offices

A national law firm

A national law firm

Our commercial lawyers are based in or close to major cities across the UK, providing expert legal advice to clients both locally and nationally.

We mainly work remotely, so we can work with you wherever you are. But we can arrange face-to-face meeting at our offices or a location of your choosing.

Head Office

Floor 5, Cavendish House, 39-41 Waterloo Street, Birmingham, B2 5PP
Regional Spaces

Stirling House, Cambridge Innovation Park, Denny End Road, Waterbeach, Cambridge, CB25 9QE
13th Floor, Piccadilly Plaza, Manchester, M1 4BT
10 Fitzroy Square, London, W1T 5HP
Harwell Innovation Centre, 173 Curie Avenue, Harwell, Oxfordshire, OX11 0QG
1st Floor, Dearing House, 1 Young St, Sheffield, S1 4UP
White Building Studios, 1-4 Cumberland Place, Southampton, SO15 2NP
A national law firm

To access legal support from just £145 per hour arrange your no-obligation initial consultation to discuss your business requirements.

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