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Commercial Disputes

Saturday, 17 August 2019

We regularly represent clients in most courts in England, including the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.


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Head of Dispute Resolution

Rob Fell

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+44(0)20 7295 3292

Rob Fell is a partner in our Dispute Resolution Department and Regulatory Investigations Group.  Rob also sits on the firm's Partnership Board and on its International Committee.

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Our disputes experience covers a wide range of business sectors and legal practice areas in the commercial sphere, including intellectual property and patent disputes, banking and insolvency disputes, professional negligence claims, disputes arising from the acquisition of businesses or companies, property and construction cases, trust and pensions disputes and financial services disputes. The broad spread of our commercial disputes practice and the strength of our reputation is such that we regularly attract instructions in high value claims not only from major UK entities (particularly banks and other financial institutions and major UK corporates) but also, increasingly, from international clients who wish to pursue claims through the English courts. 

"Provides 'proactive advice' and is 'very effective in all respects in terms of running a litigation process'."

The Legal 500

The range of significant cases handled by the department is considerable.  In addition to the cases cited elsewhere, the following are good examples of the diversity of our work.  We have recently represented:

  • the Republic of Argentina (RoA) in connection with claims worth £285m brought against it in the Commercial Court and Court of Appeal in London by a US vulture fund seeking enforcement of a judgment given in its favour in New York arising out of the RoA's default under certain bonds following the collapse of the Argentine economy in 2001.  Following an appeal to the Court of Appeal, judgment was handed down in RoA's favour ([2010] EWCA Civ 41).  NML Capital have now been granted permission to appeal to the Supreme Court.  We are also acting for the RoA in relation to similar proceedings brought against it by another vulture fund in the Commercial Court
  • Nomura International plc in defending a Commercial Court action brought by executive search firm Hogarth Davies Lloyd Ltd for fees for recruitment services provided in connection with the transfer to Nomura of employees from Lehman Brothers
  • Rosneft, the largest oil producer in Russia, in connection with a £425m freezing injunction and the underlying claim by Yukos to enforce, both at common law and under the Arbitration Act 1996, four Russian arbitration awards against Rosneft
  • Host Hotels & Resorts Inc in High Court proceedings against Whitehall (the property arm of Goldman Sachs) concerning the disputed termination of a share purchase agreement for the acquisition of a number of European hotels
  • Galiform plc, the former owner of the MFI retail furniture chain, in connection with Commercial Court litigation concerning Aon's administration and underwriting of extended warranty insurance cover sold to owners of MFI products
  • the company responsible for managing one of the largest ports in Europe in the defence of proceedings brought by Barclays Bank to enforce facility agreements and guarantees.  The sums in issue exceeded £50m and were part of a series of cases pending abroad on which we also advised
  • one of the world's largest insurance companies in a high-profile dispute between its subsidiary and a major business competitor asserting claims of over $600m.  The English arbitration and high court proceedings were part of a wider campaign in the US and involved very serious and complex issues of English and American law
  • a Mexican state-owned bank in connection with freezing order proceedings and seeking to enforce a £100m Italian judgment against the Cuban national telecoms company's assets in the UK