About Rubric Law

Be confident with our fresh and holistic legal expertise and business experience at Rubric.

Come for our corporate and commercial work. Stay for the enhanced real estate and employment legal services. In a world of standardisation, Rubric speaks volumes with a reasonable and professional legal voice.

  • Our advice is sound and effective – easily accessible with a total package that rivals larger firms.

  • We do what we say – our guaranteed communication charter means you know what to expect from us and when.
  • We celebrate the individual – encouraging dynamic relationships between our team and you.

  • We relish a fresh challenge – every new journey is approached by drawing on our experience and skills.

At Rubric, we use leading legal software to deliver our services and keep us on track. We have a secure and easy to use client-friendly portal to encourage clear communication – between everyone.

If you’d rather use phone calls, apps, virtual meetings, emails or postal updates, that’s no problem. Whatever works for you, works for us.

Meet the team

James Howell

Managing Director

James knew that a traditional law firm was not going to work for him. As a sociable, entrepreneurial person, James established Rubric to deliver approachable, engaging and unstuffy legal services: the way clients want.

His vision is a truly different legal advice service: one that hasn’t always got an eye on the clock and delivers more than just a document and a bill. A big biscuit fan, James enjoys nothing more than long walks on sunny days, playing guitar and watching his son play rugby and football.

Lisa Butcher

Head of Business Operations

Lisa joined Rubric in 2015 to support the office, part-time. Following numerous attempts to convince her to move full time, she did in 2020. Now head of business operations, she handles all things financial, HR and admin and is chief biscuit provider.

She loves walking and getting out at the weekend to see as much of the countryside as possible. Her goal in life is to be happy, find the positive in everything and retire to the North Devon coast, maybe climbing a few mountains along the way.

Nicole Brendel

Employment Solicitor

Following qualification in October 2021 and with previous experience at a national firm working with Union Claimants through the Employment Tribunal process, Nicole joins Rubric ready to grow the Employment Department and expand her knowledge taking on a new perspective of Respondent work. Nicole undertook two training seats in employment law as part of her training contract following extensive paralegal experience whilst completing her LPC part-time.

Outside of work, Nicole enjoys baking, and scuba diving, when the weather (or holidays) permit as well as playing piano and harp.

Ryan Ho


Ready for a new challenge, Ryan left his Police Lawyer role in Devon to join Rubric as a Corporate Solicitor to make full use of his Business Administration degree.  Ryan has a special interest in entrepreneurship and helping businesses thrive and is looking forward to helping clients expand and eventually sell their businesses.

Outside of the office, Ryan realised that city life and the convenience that comes with it is an important factor for both him and his wife, hence the relocation to Bristol. He enjoys discovering new food, travelling to new places and watching the F1 and boxing.

Nick Hooper

Business Development and Sales Manager

Nick came to Rubric with a strong track record in Sales and Business Development, coming from a similar role within construction recruitment. As our Business Development and Sales Manager, Nick is an ambassador of our leading client service and the significant value that we offer.

At home, Nick has his hands full with his 3 daughters keeping him very busy. As they are all very sports oriented, he spends his weekends playing taxi driver, ferrying them to all their different clubs. When Nick gets a moment to himself, he enjoys playing golf and watching rugby.

Sophie McAuley

Trainee Solicitor

Sophie has worked internationally, with experience in magic circle law firms in Spain. She has also worked in house at Santander as a legal project manager. Her background is predominantly in finance and financial litigation, both in a legal and non-legal context. She particularly enjoys contentious work.

Sophie grew up in Madrid and speaks Spanish fluently. In addition she also lived in Italy for a short time and is currently learning Italian (mostly by way of cookery). She has a cocker spaniel called Poppy, who also lived in Spain and Italy and definitely misses the warmer weather!

Nicholas Bridgewater


Nicholas joined Rubric as a paralegal in 2022. He graduated University in 2009 and completed an MA in Linguistics in 2010. He has experience working in the Middle East and the UK. As a career changer, he completed his Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) in 2021. He is also completing the Legal Practice Course (LPC), while beginning his career at Rubric.

Nicholas enjoys travelling, reading, and walking in the countryside. He has travelled to numerous countries in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and enjoys learning about new cultures, languages, and history.

Finlay Duignan


Finlay joined Rubric’s real estate department as a paralegal in 2022, with previous experience working in the mortgage department of another legal firm. He graduated University in 2021 and started his LPC in 2022, alongside working at Rubric Law in order to gain as much knowledge practical experience as possible.

Finlay loves to travel and dreams of one day visiting every continent in the world. He enjoys playing football and rugby locally as well as going to the gym to keep active outside of office hours. He loves dogs and can’t wait to get one of his own!

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Henry Haywood


Henry joined our corporate law department in 2022 as a paralegal, having completed his LPC in the same year. With a goal of practicing as a solicitor in the Corporate and Commercial field, Henry wishes to gain as much as experience as he can before eventually qualifying and putting his knowledge to good use.

Outside of work, Henry enjoys going to the gym and socialising with friends. He also has a keen interest in discovering music, both new and old, and likes to read whenever he feels the occasional inspiration to do so!

Laura Meredith

Business and Legal Operations Assistant

Laura is a recent law graduate from the University of Bristol and has previous experience working as a private client paralegal. She is looking forward to developing her career, particularly in the corporate/commercial sectors.

When not in the office, Laura is an avid theatre fan and enjoys visiting West End and regional theatres frequently. She also enjoys going to gigs/concerts quite often (bit of a heavy metal fan).  At home you can normally find Laura listening to an audiobook or podcast.

Laura Meredith Crop