Michael Ridsdale


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Michael advises on all aspects of UK and international taxation affecting businesses situated both in the UK and overseas. He is frequently asked to advise on the structuring of real estate transactions and has extensive experience advising both buyers and sellers on M&A and real estate-related transactions, ranging from FTSE 30 companies to family-owned companies. He also advises owners of all types of property interests be that UK and non-UK resident individuals, companies or partnerships, as wells as offshore and UK trustees on their underlying interests in land be that investment or trading, such as landed estates.

Michael has a particular expertise in indirect tax and regularly advises on the VAT and SDLT implications of a range of transactions.

In addition to his advisory practice, Michael is very experienced at handling enquiries and investigations made by, and appeals against, HM Revenue & Customs.

Recent Experience

  • Advising a non-UK company in connection with its ownership of a luxury London hotel.
  • Advising a UK landowner on its joint-venture arrangements with a developer.
  • Advising a UK investment fund and a non-UK financial services business, on the aspects of the construction of new head-quarter premises.
  • Advising a non-UK business on its expansion into the UK.
  • Advising businesses on non-compliance with UK tax legislation.
  • Advising a UK resident individual in connection with a Code of Practice 9 (COP9) enquiry with HMRC.

Career History

Michael joined Wedlake Bell in 2005, having initially qualified in 2001 at what is now Squire Patton Boggs. He holds an LL.B. (Hons) from the University of Sheffield, an LL.M. in Taxation from the London School of Economics and Political Science, and is part of the teaching faculty on the MSc in Taxation at the University of Oxford. He has lectured on VAT law at a number of universities in London, at the Academy of European Law in Germany and at the Institute for Judicial and Legal Studies in Mauritius.

Michael is the President of the VAT Practitioners Group in the UK and is a member of the respective VAT committees of the British Property Federation and the Law Society.

Michael Ridsdale – excellent partner on all levels, trustworthy and very knowledgeable.

Legal 500, 2023

The team at Wedlake Bell is dominated by one individual – Mike Ridsdale. Mike’s is one of those names that anyone involved with VAT would recognise instantly. He is a former national chair of the VAT Practitioners Group, and lectures regularly on current issues. He has earned universal respect from colleagues, clients, and competitors. A star individual in his field if ever their was one.

Legal 500, 2023

The individuals I deal with are responsive and friendly. I never feel I am encroaching on their time or that my questions are inappropriate. The individuals I have been especially impressed with are Mike Ridsdale.

Legal 500, 2023

Mike Ridsdale’s knowledge on SDLT is second to none. Tax is a very dry subject and Mike is able to communicate in a way that keeps the listener’s attention to enable full interaction with the client.

Legal 500, 2022

Mike is renowned throughout the tax profession for his expertise in VAT and SDLT. As a result of his well-deserved reputation, Mike attracts a quality of work to Wedlake Bell that is unrivalled in a firm of this size. He is an absolute pleasure to work with.

Legal 500, 2021

Mike Ridsdale is extremely professional and always available at short notice – useful in property matters – and particularly adept at handling head-strong investment managers who don’t always see the detail that is required in tax matters.

Legal 500, 2021

Michael Ridsdale [...] has been involved in numerous headline property transactions in 2016-2017; he has also been particularly active in thought leadership in the tax space.

Legal 500, 2017


Wedlake Bell Advises on Sale of CBW to Gravita and the Corresponding Pre-Sale Reorganisation of CBW Group

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Higher SDLT rates for second homes

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