Ian Mason Partner Head of UK Financial Services Regulation and Joint Head of UK Financial Services Sector

Speaks:  English

Qualified: 1991 - Solicitor of England & Wales

Primary office:  London

Ian Mason

Ian Mason has more than 20 years' experience as a financial services regulatory lawyer providing advice on a broad range of matters, including FCA/PRA authorisation, supervision and enforcement. He is a former Head of Department in the Enforcement Division at the financial services regulator, as well as having worked in-house, and advising firms and individuals in private practice. He advises on a broad range of financial services regulatory issues, both non-contentious and contentious. He has significant experience in regulatory investigations, both in enforcement and on the defence side, representing firms and individuals such as CEOs, Heads of Compliance, MLROs and Heads of Trading.

Ian is Head of the UK Financial Services Regulatory team and Joint Head of the UK Financial Services Sector Group.

Ian's clients have included banks, asset and fund managers, inter-dealer brokers, listed companies, senior bankers, traders and Board members. Ian has also provided Skilled Person reports to the regulator.

Ian has significant expertise in advising on market abuse and financial crime issues, both in an enforcement and compliance context.

Ian's non-contentious practice includes advising on the regulatory aspects of corporate and finance transactions, financial promotions and regulatory perimeter issues, MAR, AIFMD, MiFID II, EMIR, payment services, suitability, client money and custody, consumer credit, mortgage regulation, senior management responsibility, post-Brexit and advising on cross-border regulatory issues.

Ian also advises on the regulatory aspects of FinTech, including ICOs, cryptocurrency and blockchain developments. He is one of the contributors of the UK Chapter of the Fintech 2021 book (Global Legal Insights).

Ian is author of a number of books and articles on financial services, including books on hedge fund regulation and money laundering. Previous media appearances and as a commentator include the Financial Times, BBC Radio 4 Today Programme, BBC Breakfast News, and Thomson Reuters. He also has his own Practical Law market conduct column, and is a member of the Practical Law Financial Services Consultation Board. He is a member of the AIMA Market Abuse Working Group and the Society of Pension Practitioners Financial Services Regulation Sub-Committee.

Ian is a frequent speaker at conferences, seminars and webinars on financial services topics, including FCA Enforcement, market abuse and FinTech.

Client testimonials in Legal 500 (2022 edition)

'Ian Mason is a standout star of the London financial services scene, and a tremendous asset to Gowlings friendly and able team'

'Ian Mason is technically excellent with an eye for detail. Having worked at the regulator, he has a great sense of strategy and tactics. A pleasure to work with'

'Ian Mason is a former senior ex-regulator and is astute and pragmatic'

Career & Recognition

Filter timeline:
  • 2018

    • Career
      May 2018
      Gowling WLG (UK), partner
  • 2016

    • Career
      January 2016
      DLA Piper, director
  • 2013

    • Career
      June 2013
      Thomson Reuters UK Legal, head of content strategy
  • 2012

    • Career
      April 2012
      Practical Law Company, head of financial and corporate crime
  • 2010

    • Career
      September 2010
      Baker & McKenzie, partner
  • 2005

    • Career
      Barlow Lyde & Gilbert, partner
  • 1998

    • Career
      Financial Services Authority, head of department, enforcement division
  • 1995

    • Career
      London Stock Exchange, manager
  • 1991

    • Qualifications (Year of Call/Admission, etc.)
      Qualified, Solicitor of England & Wales
  • 1987

    • Career
      Travers Smith
  • 1984

    • Education
      University of Cambridge, MA, Law, First class honours