THREE experts in dispute resolution are helping a North East legal practice to keep disagreements out of court in an increasingly tense world.

BHP Law has made Phil Masters a partner, Rosie Woodward an associate and Guy Barr has joined the Dispute Resolution team as a senior associate solicitor.

They join consultant Ken Wiper and trainee solicitor Josh Fraser in a team which tackles commercial matters, neighbour disputes, contract issues, probate disputes, boundary and construction problems, negligence and defamation.

“Even as litigators, our view is that court should be avoided where possible,” said Phil from Darlington, who studied law at Northumbria University and in his spare time plays guitar and rides a mountain bike.

“It’s rare the parties benefit from going to court and settling issues quickly and, where possible, amicably helps both sides. I am delighted to make partner and be in a position to help the firm push forward in this field.”

Rosie, of Newton Aycliffe, originally studied media at Darlington College before switching to law in 2004, with BHP helping her train to become a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives.

“When I studied media the dream was to write scripts one day for Emmerdale,” said Rosie, who is a champion for Dementia Friends and in talks to help the Alzheimer’s Society. “At BHP I still get to write articles, which are published and beneficial to other people.

“Disputes can become very emotional. It could be a probate issue where you have to try and balance the emotions of family members who are still going through the grieving process and it is so rewarding when you come to the end of the matter with a successful resolution for everyone.”

Guy specialises in commercial litigation and contentious probate disputes and hopes to grow those areas within the wider dispute resolution practice at BHP.

“Joining BHP is a very exciting prospect for me, I will be looking to assist and advise the firm’s existing client base across the North East and beyond, as well as looking to expand the litigation practice, with a focus on key areas where we see a potential for growth” said Guy, who plays and renovates electric guitars in his spare time.

BHP Law operates offices in Darlington, Durham, Newcastle, Stockton and Tynemouth, specialising in wills, trusts and probate, family law, court of protection, residential conveyancing, dispute resolution, corporate and commercial, personal injury, commercial and agricultural property and employment law.