Kevin So

Partner

Personal Profile

Kevin So is an experienced litigator whose practice spans across a wide range of civil and commercial disputes (including, in particular, trust/probate/inheritance disputes, mental health disputes, shareholder disputes and debt/insolvency matters) as well as regulatory investigations.

Kevin is a dual-qualified solicitor (in Hong Kong and England & Wales) as well as a notary public. He is trilingual, being fully proficient in English, Cantonese and Mandarin. 

Kevin is widely recognised in the profession as a market-leader and has received a number of prestigious awards and accolades, including:

  • Ranked by Chambers and Partners, Greater China Region Guide (2022), which noted he is “an exceptional litigation lawyer who knows the market and adopts a practical and effective strategy to get to where his clients want to end up”, “very knowledgeable in private wealth and estate dispute matters” and “very client-oriented and responsive”.

  • Described by testimonials in Legal 500, Asia Pacific (2021) as "one of the best litigators in town and a go-to solicitor for private wealth, trust, and commercial disputes. His experience is unusually well balanced, having acted for high-profile private wealth clients and large multi-national commercial institutions in litigation, while also enjoying a thriving practice serving mid-sized clients (which provides him with more frequent court experience especially on bread-and-butter matters). His breadth of experience and ability to communicate with all types of clients makes him easy to recommend."
  • Top 100 Trust Litigators and Polymaths (Global), Citywealth (2020), with clients and peers describing him as having "Extensive skill with colossal UHNW (ultra-high net worth) families. Formidable."
  • Leading Estates, Probate & Succession Litigation Lawyers (Hong Kong) (Tier 2), Doyle’s Guide (2020, 2021)
  • The Rising Star of the Year Award (Asia-Pacific), Asialaw and Benchmark Litigation Asia-Pacific Dispute Resolution Awards (2018)
  • Future Star (Commercial and Transactions), Benchmark Litigation Asia-Pacific (2018, 2019 and 2020, 2021)

Kevin is the Co-Convenor of the Dispute Resolution Sub-Committee of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) in Hong Kong. He is also a member of the Mental Health Law Committee of the Hong Kong Law Society.

Key Experience

Private wealth / trust / probate / family
Advising in a high-profile dispute in relation to a prominent, multibillion-dollar family in Hong Kong. Prevailed after a 24-day High Court trial.

Advising on the administration of and legal proceedings relating to the estate of a billionaire tycoon in Hong Kong, with cross-border elements spanning across PRC, the US, BVI and Japan.

Advising a professional trustee institution in Hong Kong in respect of trust/family proceedings relating to a family with net worth over HK$20 billion (involving PRC, Cayman Islands and Jersey elements).

Advising a professional trustee institution in Hong Kong relating to the estate of a well-known singer in Hong Kong. The proceedings were commenced under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Ordinance (Cap. 481).

Advising in probate, trust and inheritance proceedings relating to the estate of a Taiwanese businessman with net worth over HK$500 million, with cross-border elements spanning across the PRC, USA and BVI.

Advising in various cases involving mentally incapacitated persons (MIPs) and issues under the Mental Health Ordinance (Cap. 136).

Company (including insolvency)
Advising the founder of a leading coffee chain in the PRC on various legal proceedings and debt restructuring issues.

Advising in various significant shareholder disputes involving derivation actions and unfair prejudice petitions.

Advising on a US$800m+ debt restructuring of a Hong Kong-listed energy group.

Advising on issues arising out of a high-profile restructuring of a Singapore-listed, Hong Kong-based energy commodity trading group.

Advising on claims and issues arising out of the liquidation of an airline company in Hong Kong.

Banking
Advising a leading international bank in a case involving a fraud perpetrated by its PRC business partner in respect of a real estate investment trust listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Prevailed at first instance and on appeal.

Advising a leading international bank in a case involving a large-scale fraud perpetrated by one of its bankers that affected hundreds of customers (in Singapore and the USA).

Advising banks on various mis-selling claims brought as a result of the Lehman Brothers minibond saga.

Successfully obtained (numerous) Mareva injunctions in cyber fraud cases.

Regulatory / White collar crime
Advising a leading international bank in an investigation by the SFC and the ICAC as a result of an alleged fraudulent scheme perpetrated by some of the employees.

Advising a PRC-based securities firm in an investigation by the SFC for allegedly conducting regulated activities without the requisite licence.

Career History

  • Partner, Karas LLP, 2022
  • Partner, Howse Williams, 2019
  • Associate / Counsel, Davis Polk & Wardwell, 2017
  • Associate / Senior Associate,, Clifford Chance, 2009
  • Trainee Solicitor, Johnson Stokes & Master (now known as Mayer Brown), 2007
  • London School of Economics and Political Science, Bachelor of Laws, 2006

Admissions

  • Hong Kong, 2009
  • England & Wales, 2012