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R&I squad leaves NRF to set up new boutique

A team of Norton Rose Fulbright lawyers, including a restructuring and insolvency partner, has left the global giant to set up a boutique firm.

user iconTom Lodewyke 13 September 2017 SME Law
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Assured Legal Solutions announced today that it has opened for business in Sydney. The boutique firm focuses on commercial and financial services law.

Nicola Cosgrove and Chris Cruikshank, of NRF’s restructuring and insolvency practice, co-founded the new firm. Ms Cosgrove has already left NRF, while Mr Cruikshank has resigned and will leave the global later in the year. 

Ms Cosgrove was a special counsel at NRF, where she spent 12 years in restructuring and insolvency. She has acted for clients including the big four banks and leading insolvency and corporate advisory firms. She also teaches at the University of Wollongong.


Mr Cruikshank is still a partner at NRF for now, specialising in advising banks, financial institutions, financial advisers and insolvency practitioners on debt restructuring. He left NRF from 2009 to 2011 to work as an associate at Latham & Watkins in London.

Accompanying the two co-founders is John Holmes, formerly a consultant at NRF. He spent 19 years at the firm, during which time he served as a partner, chairman of the firm’s Sydney office and a business unit leader. He practises in restructuring and insolvency and front-end lending.

Ms Cosgrove said that despite being on the road to partnership at NRF, she decided to strike out and co-found “a commercially focused and values-driven law firm”.

“I saw an opportunity to work with people I respect and admire, to start from scratch and create a law firm that is innovative, agile and, most importantly, founded on corporate values that align with my own personal values,” she said.

“Assured was built to solve the ‘more for less’ challenge that every business faces. We are focused on delivering smart outcomes based on a pricing structure chosen by our clients and we price our results, not our effort.”

The rest of the firm’s team is comprised of lawyers and advisers who have held positions in top-tier law firms and financial institutions. Assured’s flat structure means everyone holds the title of ‘lawyer’.

NRF and Henry Davis York have seen significant staff movement since announcing their merger.

Five HDY restructuring and turnaround partners left for Corrs Chambers Westgarth in August. 

Pictured: Chris Cruikshank and Nicola Cosgrove