Legal Business Blogs

In-house: Lloyds appoints head of legal for ring-fencing as banks prepare for 2019 deadline

Former Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) corporate partner Frances McLeman has been made head of legal for ring-fencing at Lloyds Banking Group, a prominent in-house appointment made quietly by the bank nearly three months ago.

Since January McLeman has been leading and project managing legal aspects of ring-fencing arising from reforms set to take effect in January 2019; and further coordinates a multi-disciplinary team of over 30 lawyers together with a number of external law firms.

She is understood to be part of the team asking the bank’s core panel firms to pitch for advisory work relating to separating its retail and investment banking operations ahead of the UK’s newly established ring-fencing rules.

McLeman is understood to have been seconded to Lloyds on a temporary basis, initially taking the role of interim head of corporate and M&A legal in 2014, before being moved to project manage the bank’s ring-fencing project in January 2015. Her contract to head legal for ring-fencing was made permanent earlier this year.

McLeman spent 15 years at BLP as a corporate partner where she led both corporate M&A projects and joint ventures. She also oversaw legal aspects of numerous BLP strategic projects including conversion of the firm to an limited liability partnership, the negotiations for a merger with a Russian law practice in 2009, the establishment of the structure for BLP’s Hong Kong office, and additionally led the project team that established its outsourcing arm, Managed Legal Service.

In February Legal Business revealed Lloyds had appointed a specialist sub-panel for commercial mortgage-backed securities work ahead of its global panel review this summer, with US and Magic Circle firms among those taking places, with BLP, K&L Gates, Paul Hastings, Clifford Chance, Allen & Overy, and Ashurst winning spots.

Lloyds did not respond to requests for comment at the time of writing.

For more on bank ring-fencing see: ‘Like Scotland leaving the UK’: Bank ring-fencing reforms herald big changes’