James Candappa

My experience allows me to offer detailed career and hiring advice to lawyers in specific areas of the law that can be incredibly nuanced. Spearheading our expansion to Singapore has given me both a deeper understanding of the Asian markets and first-hand insights to share with people making an international move.




Ship Finance Associate
Salary Details Available Upon Request

A long-standing client of Wadkins associates have requested assistance in finding a 2-3 PQE asset finance associate to join their experienced and friendly team. The firm have created an enjoyable workplace atmosphere and culture. The team pride themselves on working on market leading transactions in the framework of a truly international firm. However, unlike many of their counterparts in the asset finance space, they can offer a work / life balance that is rarely seen, least of all in the APAC region.

The role would be predominantly focused on ship and offshore finance. Consisting of work such as ship financing, ship building, rig financing, leasing and sales and purchase transactions, working for both borrowers and lenders alike.

After discussing the role closely with the Partner, here are a few differentiating elements of the opportunity:

  • Work life balance- The firm has lower billable hours target and a highly achievable bonus threshold.
  • Low staff turnover- The team is known to retain staff and deliver a truly collaborative and collegiate work environment.
  • Variety of work- The nature of the role will allow the associate to work on both the borrower and lender side in transactions across the ship and offshore space. This will allow for a better understanding of the market and the key players within it.

The team is looking for a 2-3 PQE, England and Wales qualified asset finance lawyer. Alternatively, a candidate with sufficient experience handling international asset finance transactions and qualified in Singapore / common law jurisdiction.

If you would like to find out more about the role and Partner, please do get in touch to discuss this further.

Senior Claims Manager
Salary details available upon request

Wadkins Associates are proud to be working with an IG Club to assist them in their search for a Senior Claims Handler in Singapore. 

The Club is a leading global marine insurer with a strong reputation for handling P&I and FD&D claims. This is an exciting opportunity to break free from the world of Private Practice into the Club environment. 

The candidate’s work will be focussed in on handling complex FD&D claims in-house, allowing direct interaction with your members throughout the process.  

Working closely with the Club, we have collectively come up with some key advantages of joining the team: 

  • Competitive salary: The Club pays above market, promising good remuneration in exchange for your hard work and technical knowledge.  
  • Work-life balance: Unlike Private Practice, the benefits of joining a Club include a better divide between your social/family and work life.  
  • Quality work: The Singapore team is comprised of experts who handle more complex dry shipping than frequently dealt with in a Club environment.  

Our client is searching for an England & Wales qualified lawyer with over five years of shipping experience, preferably from a shipping focused Private Practice background.  

If this role is of interest to you, or you are interested in discussing the market further, please get in touch with us. 

Phone number: +65 9721 3607

Email address: james.candappa@wadkinsassociates.co.uk

Senior Claims Handler
Salary Details Available Upon Request

Wadkins Associates are currently assisting an established IG P&I Club client with their search for a Senior Claims Handler in Singapore. 

The Club and has a strong reputation for being a highly financially stable, with a well managed and enviable list of members. 

The suitable candidate will be working on a variety of P&I and FD&D claims. You will be the first port of call for all claims, while simultaneously being in direct interaction with your members throughout the entire process.  

We have worked closely with our client to come up with some key advantages of joining the team: 

  • Development opportunities: Unlike other club opportunities, this team is keen to help you to continue to develop your skills, and provides fresh opportunities for career progression.  
  • Leadership role: Help your peers become the best that they can be through mentorship over Junior Claims Handlers.  
  • Deal with the best: Expect nothing but the top quality members as you will be working with the best shipping teams in the world.  

Our client is searching for a candidate with previous experience in a club, as well as Private Practice. Preference will be shown to those qualifying in a local Singaporean firm and then moving on to an IG Club. 
If this role is of interest to you, please do not hesitate to get in touch for a more detailed discussion. 

Senior Claims Manager
To be advised

With in-house opportunities becoming increasingly rarer in the market, Wadkins Associates is excited to support a leading P&I Club as they look to grow their Japan office.


The position is for a Senior Claims Manager, with your responsibilities split between handling complex legal P&I / FDD work and managing a team of junior claims handlers.


On the claims side, you will be responsible for investigating, assessing, negotiating and resolving some of the more complicated and high value P&I or Defence claims.


However, the bulk of your work will be providing leadership, coaching and member management. Your main responsibility will be building a team that is professional, efficient and able to deliver market leading claims and advisory services to Club Members. In addition to that, you will represent the Club when meeting new Members or working with existing ones.


The key draws of this position include:

  • Leadership opportunity. Senior positions in Clubs are rare and highly sought after due to the low staff turnover.
  • Prestige. Our client is well-regarded in the market and boasts a significant global tonnage.
  • Member facing. This opportunity allows for significant involvement alongside the underwriters in terms of business development and Member retention.


Due to the complexity and leadership requirements of the work, you will need to be common law qualified, with at least 5 PQE with a shipping focus. An ability to display leadership experience will be a strong advantage.


If the above position has caught your interest, do get in touch.

Ship Finance and Offshore Non-contentious Lawyer
SGD 174000 to SGD 214000

A longstanding client is looking to grow their ship finance and offshore non-contentious practice in their Singapore office. We have successfully supported this practice previously and will be happy to assist you throughout the interview process.


You will be joining an international law firm with deep roots in the shipping industry. The hiring partner is looking for associates who have a genuine interest in the shipping and offshore industry and a desire to be client facing. From a practitioner’s angle, our client appreciates commercial minded, independent, lateral thinkers who never stop learning and ask the right questions.


You will be doing an even mix of ship finance and offshore non-contentious work. On the ship finance side, you will be advising leading shipowners and occasionally banks. On the offshore non-contentious side, you will be advising construction companies, funds, offshore support companies, drilling companies and FPSO providers. You will be doing project financing, chartering, sale and purchase agreements and the occasional restructuring/ insolvency work.


The key highlights of this role include:

  • Variety of work. This is an opportunity to broaden your specialisation and get a deeper commercial understanding of the shipping and offshore sector.  
  • Collegiate work environment. The team is large but work collaboratively.
  • Work life balance. The hiring partner is keen for his associates to have a life outside of the office.


Common law qualified lawyers of between 3 to 4 PQE with shipping or offshore experience will be considered. Due to the nature of the work, England & Wales qualified lawyers will be preferred.


If the above position catches your interest, do get in touch for more information. 

Aviation Finance Lawyer
SGD 140000 to 160000

We are supporting a leading transport law firm with the hire of a mid-level Aviation Finance Associate into their Singapore office.


The partner you will be working with has a good reputation in the market and has cultivated a collaborative working attitude amongst his team.


Your primary scope of work will be aviation finance. You will mainly be advising lessors but will occasionally do work for banks and airlines.


The key draws of this opportunity include:

  • Opportunity to business develop. The practice has always adopted a client facing approach and is supportive of business development efforts.
  • Transparent bonus structure. Our client awards bonuses for hours exceeding their billable hours target. That target is slightly below the market average.
  • Resistance to market downturns. The asset finance practice has diversified their focus enough to secure work despite economic downturns.


England & Wales qualified lawyers will be at an advantage; however, common law qualified lawyers will be considered. You will also have had between 3 to 4 years of aviation finance experience.


If the above position has caught your interest, do get in touch for a discreet conversation.

Senior Claims Executive
HK$ 1,000,000 to HK$ 1,800,000 (dependent on experience)
Hong Kong

Senior in-house positions are rare and highly sought after. Accordingly, we are very excited to present an opportunity to join an IG P&I Club as a Senior Claims Handler in their Hong Kong Office.


Our client has significant tonnage from China. As a result, you will be advising charterers and traders within that market. Your scope of work will primarily be dry shipping, specifically FD&D with some exposure to P&I work. You will also be expected to train newer members in this regard.


Additionally, due to the seniority of your role, you can expect significant exposure to major members of the Club. Your job is to manage those relationships while traveling with and working with underwriters to develop new relationships.


From our discussions with the hiring manager, the key highlights of this role include:

  • Prestige. Even amongst the IG Clubs, our client stands out in terms of tonnage and reputation.

  • Significant remuneration. Our client pays at the top end of the market.

As the position is relatively senior, you will have at least 5 years of experience in dry shipping law, with a proven track record of operating within the Chinese market and across shipping. Our client has also shown a preference for England & Wales, Hong Kong or PRC qualified lawyers. Proficiency in mandarin is a prerequisite considering our client’s members.


If this position is of interest, do get in touch for a discreet discussion about this opportunity.

Shipping or Trade Litigation In-House Lawyer
To be advised

Wadkins Associates has been instructed by a major player in the commodities trading industry to find an experienced shipping and or trade litigation lawyer for an in-house counsel position in their Singapore office.


Your primary scope of work will be to provide legal advice relating to shipping and trade litigation.


This is also an opportunity to broaden your skill set with more general commercial responsibilities. These include providing advice on legal and regulatory compliance issues for a variety of internal departments. You will also be drafting, reviewing and advising on contracts related to shipping and trade


From our discussions with the hiring manager, the key highlights of this role include:


  • Prestige. This is an opportunity to do some truly international work for one of the biggest commodities traders in the world.


  • Greater commercial focus. This job allows you to develop a more commercially focused outlook working alongside various business units within the company.

  • Work life balance. In this role, you will not have billable hours targets or related Private Practice demands.

Singapore qualified lawyers will be at an advantage, although our client will consider common law qualified lawyers. Due to the relatively independent nature of the work, you will need at least 3 years of contentious shipping or trade law experience.


If this position is of interest, do get in touch for a discreet discussion about this opportunity.

Shipping Litigation Lawyer
£85000 - £105000

The Melbourne office of one of our oldest clients is looking to welcome a Senior Associate of at least 5 PQE into their shipping litigation team. We’ve had regular contact with the hiring partners in their Australian offices and are happy to guide you along the interview process.


Our Managing Consultant, James, has previously visited Melbourne on several occasions and considers it a vibrant, culturally enriched city full of open-minded people, music and art. As the second largest city in Australia, it houses the offices of many of the world’s leading international private practices.


You will be exposed to wet and dry shipping disputes, advising both shipowners and other businesses in some of the biggest cases in the region. You will be working with a highly experienced Partner and several other experienced lawyers in a collegiate and well-run team. As befitting of a more senior position, you will be expected to foster and generate client relationships and business develop frequently.


The hiring partner has highlighted several advantages of joining the team.


  • Career advancement. The partner is looking for someone who is gunning for partnership. Furthermore, the firm provides a structured approach to career development. Opportunities to business develop will be given and talent and ambition will be rewarded.


  • Remuneration. The firm pays in between the market and magic circle firms. In addition, the work life balance in Australia is slightly better than London or Singapore. They also have good bonus payments commensurate with large international private practices.


  • Opportunity to be at the forefront of the firm’s expansion. Our client is looking to lead the transport and offshore sector in the region. This is an exciting opportunity to get in early and build a practice with the support of a team of highly capable and experienced lawyers. 

If the above position is of interest, we will be happy to discuss the specifics of this opportunity or similar opportunities. If you’d like to know more about the team or the APAC market in general, do contact us for a discreet discussion.