60-second interview with Andrew Rogerson

Andrew Rogerson, 15/10/2012

After more than 25 years practising cross-border litigation and structuring, in five overseas jurisdictions and one other Canadian province, Andrew Rogerson TEP established Rogerson Law Corporation at Bay Street, Toronto, in 2006.

How did you hear about STEP?

I knew about STEP shortly after it was formed. At the time I was practising in the Turks & Caicos Islands. I felt the fledgling STEP had considerable potential – bringing together lawyers, accountants, trust officers and bankers. I had a lot of time-consuming trials on and I was travelling a great deal and never go round to it, but I watched its growth, from a distance, as it were.

A few years later, I went to practise in Jersey and was surrounded by members. Every member I met was very enthusiastic about STEP and I observed a very active organisation in Jersey. Through the encouragement of many good people in Jersey, especially James Hardcastle, the then branch president, and Rosemary Marr, who was, I believe, the secretary, and Ed Buckland, my former colleague at Bedell Cristin, I finally submitted my application. Almost immediately, I realised my mistake in not joining at inception, because by this time I had to enter via the experienced practitioner route. This involved submitting redacted copies of opinions on trust law, which I had drafted over the years.

Why did you join STEP?

I felt the synergy of the different disciplines was a good one and that would enable me to learn from others, particularly those practising in different jurisdictions.

What does being a member mean to you/your organisation?

The STEP Journal, which has improved dramatically in recent years, is my daily reminder of membership. I read articles frequently over mid-morning coffee. I learn things by doing this. In regard to the news items, I get to catch up with news on former colleagues in the offshore world, often now practising thousands of miles away from where we first met. I read about promotions and successes of former colleagues, practising in different parts of the world. I feel proud to be a member, and try to contribute in a small way by writing articles for the STEP Journal. I felt really honoured earlier this year when Laurence Black, then chair of STEP Arabia, and his committee asked me to be the Canadian panellist at the STEP Arabia conference in Dubai. I feel membership does give me a degree of additional credibility with clients.

Private client practitioners comprise a broad spectrum. What do you think links practitioners/STEP members around the world?

I think a common desire to serve their clients better, by learning from other disciplines and modestly helping to educate their fellow members.

What’s been the best STEP event you’ve attended and why?

I have attended many STEP events in different parts of the world where I have practised. I always get the feeling of members really giving so much of themselves to make the event a success. I always enjoyed monthly meetings held at Bankers Hall in Calgary, in the days when Nancy Golding QC was chair. A good set of speakers and most convivial atmosphere –very collegiate. The annual STEP Canada conferences held in Toronto are hugely well attended from within Canada and internationally. I always leave with a mine of information and good feelings after meeting up with friends from many different jurisdictions. I recall Professor Donovan Waters giving a most erudite and entertaining speech a few years back. In Jersey, we had excellent meetings. A great buzz from committed members.

The STEP Arabia conference in Dubai in March, which I reviewed for the STEP Journal, [link to http://www.stepjournal.org/journal_archive/2012/step_journal_june_2012/l... was magnificent in terms of location. It was very well organised. I recall a particularly illuminating traverse from the Chief Economist of the Standard Bank. I find it difficult to select one event as being the best. I always leave a STEP function the better for having attended.

What are the main challenges facing your organisation/practitioners at the moment?

A continuing stimulation is selecting which different offshore jurisdiction to use. The overall rise in professionalism across the offshore world often narrows the choice down to how user-friendly the offshore provider is.

How will you deal with these challenges?

I keep up to date with the various jurisdictions by reading the STEP Journal and by reviewing work performed by relevant offshore providers.

What else is keeping you busy at work at the moment?

Advising Canadians and would be Canadians in the Persian Gulf.

What’s been your career highlight?

There have been many, but recently, obtaining a Mareva injunction restraining CAD185.5m assets in proceedings involving Ontario, Hong Kong, BVI and the Cayman Islands. Last year, we obtained a Mareva injunction in Ontario and worked with Ogier’s Cayman office to restrain substantial lottery winnings. The latter resulted in a change in the common law of the Cayman Islands.

Who has been your greatest mentor and why?

The late W A Raby OBE, who taught me much about advocacy.

What do you do in your spare time?

Currently, spending time with my two-month-old daughter.

What’s the best book you have read this year?

The E-myth: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to do About it by Michael E Gerber. I use the concepts in discussions with my entrepreneurial clients.

After more than 25 years practising cross-border litigation and structuring, in five overseas jurisdictions and one other Canadian province, Andrew Rogerson TEP established Rogerson Law Corporation at Bay Street, Toronto, in 2006. His firm opened an office in Ottawa in 2011. Clients in Dubai and London are serviced with bi-monthly visits. Andrew is a regular contributor to the STEP Journal.

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