Entry kit

Any private client solicitor/attorney, accountant, barrister, banker, trust manager, financial advisor or other relevant practitioner can enter the Awards. Entries are open to both STEP members and non-member private client practitioners worldwide. Entries for the STEP Private Client Awards 2020/21 are now closed.

To enter:

  • Review the category(s) your firm will enter. Multiple entries by different offices, teams or regions within the same firm for the same category are not precluded. However, such entries will need to explain clearly why multiple entries are appropriate: experience shows that multiple entries from the same firm, for the same category, can count against that firm, so the firm may be better to agree a single entry. 
  • If you are entering multiple categories, please use the ‘Add a Submission’ function during the online entry process. If you wish to submit multiple entries at separate times each entry will need to have a different contact email address.
  • Your entry will be judged using the criteria stated under that category with each criteria point having an equal weighting of 20% with the exception of the Investment Team of the Year category which carries a weighting of 60% for part A and 40% for part B.
  • Ensure you cover all points and note that the awards are intended to highlight those that have achieved particular success over the past year (1 May 2019-30 April 2020). 
  • Download and use the ‘Submission Template’ provided for each individual category. Entrants who do not use the submission template provided for each category will not be accepted. The entry must be saved as a plain text word document (.doc or.docx only). PDF documents or documents containing images, charts, graphs or coloured text will not be accepted unless it is for the Investment of the Year category. 
  • Please ensure you enter the following information as outlined on the submission template:
    • 1. Name of the Company/Invidivual entering the Award                                           
    • 2. Word Count (Excluding criteria headers)
  • For the Accountancy Team of the Year category, all entrants will need to submit additional data on the number of staff in the firm globally, details of which can be found when you upload your submission online. 
  • For the Boutique Firm of the Year category, all entrants will need to submit additional data on the number of fee earners in the firm. The definition of fee earners can be viewed at www.steppca.org/FAQs.
  • For the Contentious Trusts and Estates, International Legal, and Private Client Legal Team of the Year categories, all entrants will need to submit additional data on the number of fee earners in the team and the firm. The definition of fee earners can be viewed at www.steppca.org/FAQs.
  • For the Investment Team of the Year category, all entrants will need to submit additional quantitative data, which carries a weighting of 40%. Please see www.steppca.org/Quantitative-Data for the full details of quantitative data required.
  • For the Trust Company category, all entrants will need to submit additional data on the number of staff in the firm globally (including those who are client-facing, directors, and in a related professional firm within the same group/ownership), details of which can be found when you upload your submission online. 
  • Ensure your entry is no more than 1,100 words. Entries of over 1,100 words will not be accepted by the judges. All text within the document (excluding criteria headers/headers on the submission templates) including links to external text and appendices will be counted in the word count. We would suggest scaling the appendices back or leaving them out altogether if possible.
  • When you submit your entry online you will be required to provide contact details.
  • We do not charge a fee to enter the STEP Private Client Awards, but rather ask for donations to our awards charity. The World Literacy Foundation, a global not-for-profit that works to list young people out of poverty through literacy. Donations last year ranged from GBP150 to GBP2,000 per entry and raised over GBP73, 000. You will receive instructions on how you can make your donation once your entry has been received by the Private Client Awards Team.
  • An email confirmation will be sent following your submission providing you with a unique confirmation number for your entries.
  • All entries received will be treated as completely confidential at all times.
  • All entries will be made available to the presiding judges Panel after 26 June 2020, and then finalists’ submissions will be shared with the Panel of Experts at the finalist stage, August 2020.
  • The presiding judges may decide that there are insufficient entries of a high enough quality to progress with a category and may drop a category under such circumstances.
  • Depending on the entries received, the presiding judges may decide that there is sufficient evidence to split the Accountancy, Contentious Trusts and Estates, International Legal, Private Client Legal, and Trust Company categories into subcategories and entrants will be advised under these circumstances at shortlist stage.
  • A firm/individual is eligible to win up to three consecutive years in a particular category. In the fourth year those winners will be excluded from entering and will be eligible to enter again in the fifth year. This rule does not apply for subsidiary/affiliate firms or teams based in different jurisdictions.
  • All entries must be received by midnight on 26 June 2020.
  • Self-nomination is acceptable for all categories, except the People's Choice - Trusted Advisor of the Year Award, the Young Practitioner of the Year Award, the Geoffrey Shindler Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Profession and the Lifetime Achievement Award. 
  • Entries may be disqualified if application information is found to be false or misleading or previous submission information has been reused. Disqualification is at the discretion of the Judges/Panel of Experts and will be considered on a case by case basis. 
  • It is not usual for awards to be revoked following a ceremony. However should an award have been given based on information which is later shown to be false or misleading or the subsequent behaviour of an individual is considered to bring disrepute upon the trust and estate profession and/or the name of STEP, awards may be revoked. Any such decision will be taken by the STEP Board. 
  • You will find out if you are shortlisted in August 2020.

If you have any questions about the Awards, please email the STEP PCA Team at pca@step.org or call +44(0)20 3752 3700.