Established West Coast and Clare Valley law firm, Jenkins Anderson has merged with leading Adelaide law firm Mellor Olsson Lawyers, to create a law firm with one of the largest footprints across regional SA.
From 1 October 2013, the combined firms will trade as ‘Mellor Olsson Lawyers (Incorporating Jenkins Anderson)’.
The merged firm will continue to have offices in Port Lincoln and Auburn, as well as Mellor Olsson’s existing (by appointment) regional offices at Kadina, McLaren Vale and Nuriootpa and its main Adelaide CBD office.
Jenkins Anderson founding partner, Greg Anderson started practising in Port Lincoln in 1975 and in 1976 joined forces with fellow lawyer Noel Jenkins to create Jenkins Anderson. In 2005 Mr Jenkins retired and Mr Anderson's son Joseph has since joined the partnership.
Mr Anderson said, "About 70 per cent of our clients are farming clients, with the other 30 per cent predominantly from towns in the Clare Valley and on Eyre Peninsula.”
He added, “Jenkins Anderson’s five resident country lawyers across both offices will continue to service locals post merger, and will be supported by Mellor Olsson's 29 lawyers when required.”
So Who Is Mellor Olsson?
Mellor Olsson has a long and distinguished history in the South Australian legal profession spanning many decades, and is an Adelaide law firm with strong regional and country connections.
Mellor Olsson managing partner, Andrew Goode has welcomed the merger and commented, “We have a long history of acting for country clients and farmer organisations. For many years we acted on behalf of SAFF (including when it was the UF&S), and in recent times we have acted for Grain Producers SA Ltd (GPSA)."
He added, “We are currently introducing an initial free half hour interview, either by phone or in person, for members of GPSA."
Mr Goode said Mellor Olsson Lawyers had a long association with rural SA, and that connection is demonstrated through Mellor Olsson’s long-time representation at the South East Field Days and in recent years the Yorke Peninsula Field Days and a regular column in the Stock Journal.
Both Mr Anderson and Mr Goode agree the two firms offer each other strengths. Mr Goode said, "One of the things Mellor Olsson brings to Jenkins Anderson is a very large practice in Personal Injury, General Litigation, Planning & Environment, Estate Litigation and Tax."
Mr Goode said modern legal practices required a huge amount of knowledge across complex and varied areas of law and the resources to handle large matters.
"The merger will help us achieve Jenkins Anderson's aim to be the best regional law firm in SA and Mellor Olsson's aim to continue providing services to country clients throughout SA," he said.
"We'll have people on the ground, living in the country, ensuring we have a thorough understanding of country issues.”
"We all think it's a very exciting new venture, that will benefit both businesses and our clients."
What Will Change For Locals?
From a practical point of view, very little will change apart from office branding.
Senior partner, Greg Anderson, will continue to manage and practise in Auburn with re-location to a new Clare office on the cards some time next year. Meanwhile, partner Joseph Anderson and his team will continue to manage and practise in Port Lincoln from the existing Jenkins Anderson location.
Port Lincoln partner, Joe Anderson, said, “Whilst in some ways it is sad that the name ‘Jenkins Anderson’ no longer exists, the merger represents a logical evolution and fulfills our aim to be the premier regionally focussed law firm in South Australia.”
“With Mellor Olsson’s added expertise and resources, we will now be even better placed to meet our clients’ legal needs.”