David Dorgan is a Group Partner and Group Head of the Private Client & Trusts department in Jersey. David has established himself as one of the leading lawyers in Jersey uniquely combining strengths in private client and trusts, corporate and finance work.

He has a significant specialism in private and commercial trusts and foundations, focusing on providing technical advice on their establishment and on-going administration which is tailored for the practical and commercial requirements of clients. He has extensive experience of drafting bespoke and complex trust instruments and foundation regulations for high and ultra-high net worth individuals and families, preparing bespoke will trusts and providing documentation for SPV, philanthropy, charitable and non-charitable purposes. He is a regular contributor of articles on trusts and foundations issues in the professional press, is the co-author of the ICSA Guide to Jersey Foundations and the author of the LexisNexis PSL Private Client Guides to Jersey trusts and foundations.

David also has considerable experience in corporate and finance matters, in particular transactions involving trustees refinancing or selling and/or purchasing trust fund property and/or high net worth individuals or families entering into entrepreneurial ventures. He has also provided opinions to foreign courts, foreign revenue authorities and institutional lenders on complex issues relating to trust and corporate issues.

David has been ranked by Chambers and Partners since 2012 – in 2019 clients commended him for being responsive and astute; “David is particularly timely in the delivery of his services, and has a keen technical and business acumen, ensuring advice is appropriate and cost-effective.” “He has a pragmatic and commercial approach on difficult matters and is very good at understanding the issues and coming up with reasonable solutions…His drafting is excellent and he can also liaise with other advisers and third parties with a good commercial view for the client.”

David has been reported in the Legal 500 UK since 2010 and in 2018 he was acknowledged for having a “sound knowledge of the law, availability, great communication skills and willingness to go the extra mile”

Citywealth 2016 shortlisted David as Lawyer of the Year – IFC Partner and in 2014 Citywealth named him as one of the future leaders of Jersey’s private wealth industry.

David graduated with a Master of Laws degree, trained with a major offshore firm in Jersey and qualified as a Jersey Solicitor in 2006, as a Jersey Advocate in 2008 and as a Jersey Notary Public in 2011. He is a member of the Jersey Finance Working Groups for Trusts and Foundations, is a full member of STEP and holds the Islamic Finance Qualification from CISI.



Recent highlights have included:

  • Advising the trustees in the interpretation of trusts originally established under Hong Kong Law in the 1980s for an internationally renowned film producer. Some of the trust’s original intentions had become obsolete; circumstances had radically altered since the 1980s to the extent there were questions over the validly of certain trusts, the identity of beneficiaries and excluded persons and how the trustee might restructure accordingly
  • Assisting in the drafting, and related advice, of a new trust structure for the benefit of the wife in the divorce of an internationally renowned UHNW couple. The trust fund was split into different funds, one in particular was for high-risk investments for which the trustee required protection
  • Advising potential trustees in deciding to take-on the administration of a trust from another jurisdiction which was subject to a Suspicious Activity Report and had its assets frozen by a foreign court order pending investigation; in particular assisting the potential trustee with the Jersey regulatory position and the response of the Joint Financial Crimes Unit
  • Assisting in the drafting and related advice of a new complex foundation structure with multiple bespoke requirements including the founders’ powers and the appointment involving persons, currently minors, in place of the principal founder and guardian
  • Assisting in the drafting and related advice of the distribution of substantial sums to a beneficiary of a foundation, but the sum to be provided in such amounts as and when required by the beneficiary and dealing with the requirement of indemnification by the trust company acting as a qualified member of the foundation’s council



The College of Law of England and Wales (England)

The University of Buckingham (England)



25 Jul 2018 | News

Appleby named as a ‘Leading Firm’ in the Chambers Global High Net Worth Guide

Appleby recognised for the third year running in the Chambers Global 2018 High Net Worth Guide for t...

21 Jan 2016 | News

Appleby wins two accolades at 2016 Citywealth IFC Awards

Law firm also listed as runner-up in the Caribbean category

Contributors: David Dorgan


9 Oct 2019 |

Transparency and the Crown Dependencies

Transparency of beneficial ownership information has been a political issue since June 2013 when Bri...

2 Sep 2019 |

Enhancing Jersey’s Philanthropic Wealth Structures

There are distinguishing characteristics between charity (which tends to focus on the relief of a pa...

12 Aug 2019 |

Enhancing Jersey’s Philanthropic Wealth Structures

There are distinguishing characteristics between charity (which tends to focus on the relief of a pa...

26 Jun 2019 |

Regulatory Headwinds

Faced with increased scrutiny from regulators on both global and jurisdictional levels, businesses m...

Contributors: David Dorgan
19 Jun 2019 |

Beneficial Ownership Update: Crown Dependencies

The Crown Dependencies (Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man) have announced a joint policy commitme...

Contributors: Alison MacKrill, Caren Pegg

Related People

Fraser Robertson

Group Partner: Jersey

T +44 (0)1534 818 032
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