Alan is a Partner in the private client department, based in Glasgow having been with the firm since 2003.
Alan work covers three main areas: charities, private client and parliamentary matters.
Much of Alan's practice involves advising on charity law. Alan assists charities, individuals and corporates on charity law, social enterprise (including charities engaged in trading and projects such as renewables), CSR, governance training and philanthropy. This involves assisting a variety of bodies across the whole of Scotland and beyond including community projects, family foundations, housing associations, education providers, museums and culture bodies, commercial enterprises with philanthropic and community programmes, national institutions and even space agency NASA. Alan has been heavily involved in early developments in charity law such as Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisations (SCIOs), reorganisations and mergers. Dealing daily with OSCR Alan also seeks consents from other bodies including Scottish Housing Regulator and Privy Council as well as having experience with regulators such as Ofcom. Legal directories have referred to MMS’ “excellence in charity law” and Alan’s “formidable knowledge and legal expertise”. Alan has experience of the "real workings" of charity boards and organisation with the Scottish Youth Parliament and the Scottish Universities Law Institute.
Alan's private client work covers estate planning including wills, executries, trusts and inheritance tax. He is the author of the Scotland chapter in the textbook International Succession. As part of his private client advice Alan often advises on incapacity law (powers of attorney, court appointed guardianship and other methods of managing the affairs of those less able to do so). The legal directory Chambers has referred to MMS' "excellence" in incapacity law matters.
Often as part of advising charities, he has developed rare experience advising on parliamentary matters. Alan has advised a number of organisations on promoting private legislation in the Scottish Parliament (including the Ure Elder Transfer and Dissolution Act 2010), helped organisations consider the impact of draft legislation and carried out monitoring of parliamentary developments.
He was previously a member of the legal staff at the Scottish Law Commission and currently lectures at the University of Strathclyde in property, trusts and charities. Alan has also tutored private client law at the University of Glasgow.
Alan was a member of the Council of the Law Society of Scotland from 2007 to 2009 and the Society's Education and Training Committee from 2007 to 2012. He is currently a member of the Society's Charity Law and Mental Health and Disability Law Committees.