Commercial & Regulatory Disputes
Our Commercial and Regulatory Disputes Solicitors are experienced in conducting litigation in the High Court, arbitration and alternative dispute resolution (ADR) such as mediation or expert determination. The team includes an in-house QC capable of representing you before regulators or authorities and a specialist insurance team accustomed to securing policy coverage as part of any crisis management.
In an increasingly global market, we routinely represent clients with an international reach. We are members of the International Bar Association and have a tried and tested network of overseas firms who assist us and our clients in support of cross-border disputes or enforcement action in foreign jurisdictions.
In addition to advising on breach of contract claims and emergency injunctions, our team has a breadth of expertise to call on and is ranked in the legal directories Chambers & Partners and Legal 500 in relation to commercial litigation, policyholder coverage disputes, fraud and regulatory investigations.
Our team advises companies and their General Counsel, directors and shareholders in dispute. Our experience extends to resolving board room deadlock, the removal of directors, breach of shareholder agreements, unfair prejudice on minority shareholders, derivative claims, breaches of fiduciary duty or misfeasance, post transaction warranty or indemnity claims, earn-out or completion account disputes and expert determination clauses. Our market leading corporate team can also advise on how to prevent disputes arising in the first place or mitigate the risk of them escalating unnecessarily.
We know that familiarity with the regulatory landscape is essential to resolving financial services disputes or investigations. The Senior Managers & Certification regime, fitness and propriety, self-reporting, the FCA's investigatory powers, the FOS or FSCS and professional indemnity insurance can all unlock successful outcomes for our clients. We understand that plotting the right course of action depends on whether you are an authorised firm, an approved person, investor or a customer. We have experience of acting on high profile instructions for fund management companies, financial planning firms and group actions supported by litigation funders.
Fraud and Financial Crime
Steps taken by corporates, directors and managers in the immediate aftermath of an incident or the emergence of wrongdoing are crucial in determining their impact on you or your business. Under the leadership of Andrew Oldland QC, our team is uniquely positioned to provide clear insight into the functioning and requirements of regulators, prosecutors and investigators. We can also formulate strategies for the freezing, recovery and repatriation of assets and for reputation management during these sensitive times. We will provide continuity of representation and seamless advice across the criminal, civil and regulatory aspects of your matter and have particular experience in financial regulation, fraud, bribery & corruption and money laundering.
We can advise on the full range of regulatory issues and have particular experience in investigations by the FCA, SFO, CMA, HSE and HMRC. If you are facing an investigation or think that you may soon be investigated for a regulatory breach or a criminal offence, it is essential that you seek legal advice immediately. Our experienced team will provide expert guidance throughout any investigation with a view to minimising any disruption or damage to your business. If proceedings follow, we provide continuity of advice and representation of the highest quality throughout. The strategies we develop cover important ancillary issues such as civil claims, disciplinary action against employees, insurance cover (D&O or PII) and reputation management.
If your business has an international reach it is essential that you have a clear and informed understanding of the laws and regulations for the territories that you operate in and your ability, if required, to enforce Judgments or Awards and preserve assets in foreign jurisdictions. When a cross-border crisis arises, our experienced lawyers will engage with our established global network of trusted legal advisors and rapidly assemble a specialist team to deal with all aspects of your international dispute or investigation.
Our Commercial & Regulatory disputes team are well versed in advising and representing policyholder clients in relation to insurance coverage.
Our experience extends to claims on D&O, professional indemnity, public liability, business interruption (including infectious disease and prevention of access clauses) and other specialist policies on either a claims made or occurring basis.
The strength and depth of the firm's litigation offering also means that we can provide strategic advice where the resolution of your insurance claim dovetails with the conduct of any ancillary commercial or corporate dispute and regulatory investigation.
See our specialist webpage for further details of our expertise and experience.
Intellectual Property & Technology
We advise on all aspects of intellectual property law including disputes and contentious matters. We support our clients by identifying, protecting, exploiting and enhancing their intellectual property rights. Our lawyers are specialists in this field and have considerable expertise in enforcing IP rights both domestically and overseas. Our work covers the full range of rights from copyright and designs, through trademarks, confidential information and patents.
Reputation Management & Privacy
We recognise that protecting your brand and reputation is critical and that social media can be a challenging information platform to manage. Our reputation management lawyers are dedicated to dealing with defamation, breach of privacy, online abuse and harassment claims as well as infringement of intellectual property rights, misuse of confidential information and data protection. We can advise on reputation management as a standalone issue or as part of a wider commercial or regulatory dispute resolution strategy.
Private Wealth & Trusts
Our experienced team brings together the expertise of private wealth, trusts, and tax lawyers with highly experienced litigators to advise clients on complex and often sensitive disputes. We work with private individuals, beneficiaries and trustees across many jurisdictions, including the UK, Jersey, Guernsey, British Virgin Islands and Cayman Islands.
Our specialist professional negligence lawyers provide advice to both claimants and defendants on claims involving a range of professionals, including solicitors, accountants, surveyors, financial advisors and architects. We provide a full service using our extensive experience handling matters from the initial letter of claim through to trial as well as our knowledge of litigation funding and insurance coverage. We will build the right team for your case – including carefully selected experts, mediators and barristers. Our team is also able to draw on a depth of expertise within Michelmores across the financial services, agriculture, construction and private wealth sectors.
Our highly talented team of specialist litigation, arbitration and regulatory lawyers make up our International Arbitration Group. The team practises general commercial arbitration, and includes specialist insurance & reinsurance, IP/IT, construction and engineering lawyers. We have experience of both ad-hoc and institutional arbitrations and have acted for clients in complex, high-value disputes under the rules of the LCIA, ICC, SCC and DIAC.
Litigation Funding and ATE Insurance
We understand that litigation is often a substantial financial investment and that funding fees or managing adverse cost risk can be a challenge for our clients. There are a variety of alternative funding arrangements which may assist you in reducing the costs of litigation or sharing the risk of those costs with another party such as a specialist insurer/funder. You can find out more about these here.
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- Advising and representing Ticketus LLP, an advance purchaser of match tickets, in connection with a variety of matters arising out of the collapse of Glasgow Rangers FC, including bringing proceedings against the former owner of Glasgow Rangers FC pursuant to a personal guarantee, and obtaining a substantial summary judgment against him (reported in 2013 EWHC 4069 (Ch)).
(1) Ticketus LLP (2) Ticketus2 LLP v (1) Craig Thomas Whyte (2) Rangers FC Group Ltd (3) Liberty Capital Ltd (2014)
- Advising a household name client on the termination of a problematic overseas distributor without incurring exposure to compensation. The matter concluded speedily without protracted litigation and resulted in the appointment of a new distributor with resulting significant savings for our client.
- Defending a claim brought against a large business for alleged misuse of a competitor's confidential information. The case has involved instructing a forensic IT expert and a consideration of complex disclosure issues.
- Advising and representing claimants in a substantial breach of trust claim over the sale of a holding in a family company resulting in a significantly improved return to the beneficiaries following a mediation.
- Successfully negotiating a very large settlement in a complex claim for breach of contract against a major bank.
- Advising numerous well-known brands on brand protection issues, including pursuing claims for copyright and design infringement.
- Defending a group of independent financial advisers being pursued by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme in relation to the distribution of Keydata investment products (an overseas provider, which collapsed during the credit crunch as a result of fraud and illiquidity). We conducted litigation in the High Court, advised on professional indemnity insurance coverage and negotiated settlements.
- Pursuing a US$multi-million contractual claim against a major Nigerian television station. The claim has involved working with a law firm in Nigeria to initiate winding up proceedings locally and take other cross border enforcement measures, and resulted in a substantial recovery for our client.
- Acting for an NHS Trust defending a highly sensitive, high value contractual claim by a care home owner relating to the commissioning of care for vulnerable adults. The case involved contractual, safeguarding adults and Mental Capacity Act issues and was successfully defended at trial.
- Successfully concluding an international arbitration in Dubai against a UAE company in accordance with the rules of the Dubai International Arbitration Centre and which was subject to English law.
- Acting for a leading multi-national satellite communications company. Our current caseload includes claims against companies based in France, Greece, Italy, Macedonia, Cyprus, Turkey, Romania, Ukraine, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Senegal, Nigeria, Uganda, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, Guinea Bissau, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Bolivia, and Nepal.
- Representing an Israeli company in a multi-jurisdictional commercial contractual dispute with a US group.
- Pursuing a contractual claim against a satellite telecommunications company based in Uganda and part-owned by a Libyan entity. This involved a consideration of complex issues relating to the UN sanctions position both in England and Wales and Uganda. The claim has settled successfully.