McGuireWoods’ private wealth services group earned a nationwide ranking in Chambers and Partners’ latest High Net Worth Guide, with 11 of the firm’s lawyers singled out for recognition — the most for the firm since the guide’s 2016 launch. In addition to being recognized for having one of the country’s top private wealth services practices, the firm earned regional Band 1 practice rankings — the highest possible — for the District of Columbia, Virginia and North Carolina.
Three McGuireWoods partners — Ronald Aucutt, Skip Fox and John O’Grady — were ranked as notable practitioners in the Eastern U.S. region and in their respective states with Aucutt receiving special recognition as a “Senior Statesman.”
Partners Jean Gordon Carter, Andrea Chomakos, Michele McKinnon, William Sanderson, Matthew Sperry, Benjamin S. Candland and Adam M. Damerow and counsel E. Graham McGoogan Jr. earned state rankings in the guide.
McGuireWoods’ private wealth lawyers advise individuals, families, businesses, banks and trust companies in all aspects of wealth management. In the HNW guide, Chambers noted McGuireWoods is “a well-established name in the private wealth market” with a “concentration of national luminaries” on its team.
“They are top-notch, they provide the best service you can get,” an industry observer told Chambers researchers.
Clients and peers also lauded individual lawyers in interviews with Chambers researchers:
Aucutt of Tysons, chair emeritus of the private wealth services group, was described as an authority whose opinion carries weight with policymakers. “Everyone wants to know what Ronald Aucutt thinks,” one observer said. Another called Aucutt “one of the most brilliant guys in the business.”
Raleigh’s Carter, co-leader of the private wealth services group, was described as “a rock star in the North Carolina Bar” who is “very diligent, always responsive and very generous with her time.”
Chomakos of Charlotte was lauded as “a top-tier wealth planner” who impresses clients and peers with her technical savvy and “leaves no stone unturned.”
Charlottesville’s Fox was recognized for his influence in private wealth law and his dedication to clients. “He’s really knowledgeable and well-connected in our community,” one commentator said.
A client said Charlotte’s McGoogan “is the perfect lawyer…. He is very knowledgeable and receptive to new ideas. He is responsive and goes the extra mile to help us.”
McKinnon of Richmond, who leads the firm’s nonprofit practice, was hailed for her knowledge of U.S. charitable organizations and not-for-profit issues across the country and in Virginia.
Richmond’s O’Grady was praised for guiding clients “on every aspect of wealth management” and being “a trusted adviser for all their affairs.” Said one client: “We rely on him completely to advise us through difficult situations.”
Washington, D.C.’s Sanderson, co-leader of the private wealth services group, was recognized for his experience in fiduciary advisory matters and handling of delicate situations. “He can balance between the legal skills required and a sensitive approach to help ultra-high net worth families solve problems,” a peer observed.
Sperry of Chicago, head of the firm’s global private client group, was described by a commentator as “practical” and “dependable” — an adviser who “takes the time to understand the client’s needs and is willing to invest in the relationship.”
Richmond’s Candland and Damerow of Chicago were rated as “Up and Coming” lawyers. “He is maturing into an extraordinary attorney,” a lawyer said of Candland, while a peer praised Damerow for having “a very good understanding of not only trust law but tax law and implications.”