Pinsent Masons partner James Bullock has died at the age of 47, the international firm announced this morning.

A statement said the firm was shocked and saddened. ‘A well-liked and respected tax giant has left us,’ it added.

Bullock was head of the firm’s litigation and compliance group. He was admitted in 1992 and recognised as one of the UK’s leading tax practitioners, acting in landmark judicial review cases concerning HM Revenue & Customs.

Pinsent Masons said: ‘It is with deep sadness that we confirm that James Bullock, a partner and a member of the senior leadership team at Pinsent Masons, passed away suddenly on the morning of 14 September.

‘James joined legacy firm KLegal in 2000, where he founded one of the UK’s first specialist tax litigation practices. When that business folded back into McGrigors in the wake of regulatory changes, James took on the role of head of risk advisory services and ultimately joined the McGrigors board. James played a lead role in developing McGrigors’ City offering prior to its merger with Pinsent Masons in 2012.

‘Since then he headed up our litigation and compliance practice, which grew domestically and internationally, and received industry-wide recognition under his leadership. James remained a fee-earning lawyer and well-known figure in the tax world throughout his career. He developed a reputation as a passionate and uncompromising litigator while building a tax disputes practice recognised by the legal directories as elite.

‘Outside of work James cared deeply about politics and education, and sat on the board of governors of Blundell’s School in Tiverton. It is hard to overstate James’ impact on our business and contribution to its success. James was an ebullient character and will be sorely missed. Our thoughts are with his loved ones at this difficult time.’

Details have been released on the funeral arrangements for James:

  • The funeral mass will be held at St Stanislaus RC Church, Dulverton, Somerset at 10.30am on Monday 28 September. This will be followed by a private cremation, attended only by family and by special invitation. James’s family invite all to attend a reception afterwards at The Castle Hotel, Taunton.
  • Family flowers only. For details on the funeral and reception, please RSVP to Natalie Devereux
  • A celebration of James’s life will be held at Stationers’ Hall, London on the evening of Thursday 8 October. This will take the form of a reception, at which a number of James’ close friends and colleagues will pay tribute to his life and works. Please note this date for your diary – formal invitations will follow