Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon

United Kingdom > London > Transport > Shipping > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

Other

Index of tables

  1. Shipping
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers:

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers:

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Shipping clients in London using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

CLICK HERE TO VISIT THE WHO REPRESENTS WHO SITE

This section covers all forms of dry and wet shipping work, including casualty matters, shipbuilding, bill of lading and charterparty disputes, and marine insurance matters. Ship finance work is covered in the Asset finance and leasing section, and ship-related personal injury matters are covered in the Travel section.

HFW’s β€˜commercially minded team’ is noted for its β€˜vast experience across shipping’, which spans wet and dry mandates; the team is also described as a β€˜top player in international shipping disputes’. It is advising numerous customers, partner lines, insurers and terminal operators in relation to the bankruptcy of Hanjin Shipping. It also represented the cargo insurers in the β€˜Atlantik Confidence’ case which examined liability limitations. In another highlight illustrating the breadth of its maritime expertise, the piracy team secured the release of 26 hostages held in Somalia in 2016. Global head of shipping Craig Neame is a leading expert on container shipping and terminal matters. Other key figures include head of transactional shipping Adam Shire; Jonathan Webb, who heads the contentious shipping practice; Paul Dean, who is β€˜supremely diplomatic’; Daniel Martin, who heads the shipping regulatory team; salvage specialist Andrew Chamberlain; Richard Neylon, who is noted for marine casualty disputes; Rory Butler , who is experienced in handling major containership casualties involving dangerous goods; casualty specialist Jim Cashman; David Morriss, who is experienced in dry shipping disputes; Elinor Dautlich, who handles shipping contracts; litigation specialist Richard Mabane; global crisis management head Toby Stephens; and sanctions specialist Daniel Martin. John Forrester, Stephen Drury, Toby Stephens, Dominic Johnson, Matt Illingworth and Jean Koh, who has β€˜excellent knowledge’, are also recommended. Hugh Livingstone and James Gosling are now part-time consultants.

β€˜A market leader for shipping work’, Ince & Co has β€˜deep industry knowledge allied with first-class legal knowledge; it provides quick, accurate and succinct legal advice, while always keeping in mind the underlying commercial issues’. The practice handles the full range of wet and dry shipping work, with expertise in high-profile casualties and maritime disputes, in addition to offshore, yacht, and regulatory and compliance mandates. It is acting for the owners of a bulk tanker in a $10m dispute with charterers, and represented the Norwegian hull and machinery indemnity insurers, Gard, and the protection and indemnity insurers, West of England, in a $170m Supreme Court case. It is also acting for Visemar and insurer Gard, in disputes relating to a 2014 fire on board the Norman Atlantic. Paul Herring and Faz Peermohamed lead the team, which includes Duncan Bateson, who handles superyachts and commercial shipping matters; shipping litigation specialist Jeremy Biggs; Ian Chetwood , who is β€˜excellent on commercial disputes’; Simon Spark , who β€˜always sees the big picture’; Kevin Cooper, who is noted for large-scale casualty cases; admiralty team head Christian Dwyer; Jonathan Elvey, who is focused on the Greek market; the β€˜experienced’ Fionna Gavin; and Will Marshall, who handles shipping and shipbuilding disputes. Also recommended are David Richards , who specialises in shipping and trade work. the β€˜formidable’ Michael Volikas, Chris Kidd, who leads on shipbuilding mandates, and consultant James Wilson.

Clyde & Co LLP’s β€˜expert’ department handles a range of shipping mandates for shipowners, charterers, traders, offshore energy groups and insurers, ports and terminals, shipbuilders, salvors and banks and brokers. It is acting for the Alpine Eternity and its liability insurers Britannia P&I Club on a casualty case resulting from a collision with an Iranian-owned oil rig, and represented the charterers Containerships Denizcilik and its insurers in an indemnity claim against the owners of the Yusuf Gusuf Cepnioglu and its P&I insurers following the grounding and total loss of the vessel in Greece. It also advising VIS Insurance on a cargo contamination case. The β€˜well-respected’ team includes Andrew Preston, who handles charterparty and bill of lading disputes; Simon Jackson, who specialises in shipping dispute resolution, as well as marine and energy insurance; cargo casualty head Jai Sharma; disputes specialist Andrew Nicholas; the β€˜brilliant’ Edward Mills-Webb; Nick Austin, who handles shipping and trading disputes; Elizabeth Turnbull, who is noted for contractual disputes; Simon Culhane; and the β€˜very responsive’ Irvine Marr. Other recommended individuals include Hatty Sumption, Martin Hall, John Leonida, David Bennet (who specialises in dispute resolution and international arbitration), Rob Collins, and legal director Bethan Bradley. In 2016 Christopher Pratts joined from Waltons & Morse, and Fanos Theophani joined from MFB.

Hill Dickinson LLP has β€˜great depth of knowledge’ and β€˜delivers good response times’ as well as β€˜clear advice’. It handles the breadth of wet and dry shipping mandates, and also advises on ports and terminals work, as well as ship and yacht construction matters. Julian Clark, who joined in 2017 from Campbell Johnston Clark, heads the global shipping practice, which include the β€˜first-rate’ Maria Pittordis, who is the global head of marine, trade and energy; Tony Allen, who heads the yachts team; Jeff Isaacs, who heads the commodities team; Rhys Clift, who handles disputes on contracts of carriage and bills of lading and maritime casualties; Justin Draeger, who specialises in bill of lading and charterparty disputes as well as refrigerated and bulk cargo matters; and Philip Haddon, who handles casualty matters. Also recommended are shipping disputes specialist Russell Gardner, Ian Maclean, who advises on contractual disputes, the β€˜extremely knowledgeable’ David Pitlarge, the β€˜experienced’ Malcolm Entwistle, and admiralty specialist Robert Wallis. The team was bolstered by the arrival of Tony Swinnerton and Lewis Moore.

The β€˜strong and deep’ team at Reed Smith LLP is β€˜highly knowledgeable and is extremely accustomed to thinking through issues from both a legal and a commercial perspective’. It handles a range of contentious and non-contentious shipping mandates and is particularly noted for its expertise in casualty, admiralty, ports and terminals, sanctions and superyacht matters. Highlights included representing The International Oil Pollution Compensation Fund 1992 on a case relating to a 1997 oil spill. It also advised the Greek owners and International Group P&I Club on a range of issues relating to a grounding off the southeast coast of Mauritius. Nick Shaw leads the global shipping team, which includes casualty head Richard Gunn, Charles Weller (β€˜a shining star’ who is active in the Greek, North American and Far East markets), Sally-Ann Underhill, who is an β€˜extremely responsive, diligent, intelligent and practical lawyer’, and the β€˜brilliant’ Andrew Taylor. Also recommended are the β€˜experienced’Stephen Kirkpatrick; Korea group head Alex Andrews; Charles Brown, who handles dry shipping litigation; shipping and trade disputes specialist Jeb Clulow; Marcus Dodds, who handles contract disputes and admiralty matters; consultant Lindsay East; Will Howard; and recently promoted partner Ioli Tassopoulou. Mark O’Neil and Helle Kjaerstad recently left the firm.

Stephenson Harwood’s team, which is noted for its β€˜excellent service, and breadth and depth in the industry’, is regularly engaged in high-stakes disputes in the London shipping market. It is advising war risk insurers (Navigators Insurance Company, Travelers Syndicate 5000 at Lloyd's and others) in relation to the Court of Appeal case concerning the β€˜B Atlantic’, and acted for Vitol in a $18m cargo claim in Nigeria. The team is also acting for a major German bank on the enforcement of its rights under three shipping loan agreements entered into for the purpose of financing three tankers.Mike Phillips leads the marine and international group, which includes Sean Gibbons, who is β€˜considered and easy to work with’; Paolo Ghirardani, who has β€˜great strategic acumen’; shipping disputes specialist Duncan McDonald; the β€˜approachable’ Nick Barber, who handles admiralty and contractual issues; offshore oil and gas and maritime law expert Tony Concagh; Ingolf Kaiser, who is β€˜outstanding on dry shipping matters’; the β€˜supremely confident and reassuring’Max Lemanski; and Stuart Beadnall, who is experienced in the maritime aspects of the oil and gas industry. Cristan Evans, Haris Zografakis and Alex Davis are also recommended.

Maritime and insurance law boutique Bentleys, Stokes and Lowless is a β€˜great example of a small firm that is a real match for the heavyweights’; β€˜it offers its clients an excellent service, combining detailed knowledge and experience of shipping law and the industry, with a very client-friendly approach’. Highlights included acting for the owners of the β€˜Yangtze Xing Hua’ on an arbitration award appeal. Paul Griffiths heads the practice, which includes Vernon Sewell, who heads the casualty team and has β€˜deep industry knowledge’; Nicholas Wilson, who is β€˜a great tactician’; William Chetwood, who is noted for his β€˜vast experience’; and Joanna Steele, who β€˜immerses herself in every case and has a very thorough grasp of the evidence and legal issues, whilst never losing sight of the commercial implications of a case’. Clients also single out Sarah Allan as β€˜particularly good for yacht and superyacht-related work; her practical knowledge of sailing and the industry stand her in good stead’. Andrew Powell is a β€˜details man with excellent technical skills’, and Paul Crane, who is β€˜very methodical in his approach’.

Campbell Johnston Clark delivers β€˜pragmatic, practical and speedy advice’ and has β€˜vast experience of the shipping sector’, advising on a range of admiralty, casualty, commercial shipbuilding, insurance and international trade mandates. It is advising Credit Europe Bank in proceedings brought by the insurers against the owners of the β€˜Atlantik Confidence’ and Credit Europe Bank following its sinking. The β€˜experienced team’ features number of standout individuals, including Jonathan Campbell, who handles transactional matters; Alistair Johnston, who advises on shipping and marine insurance matters; James Mackay, who gives β€˜precise advice on complex legal issues relating to bills of lading’; and Maria Borg Barthet, who handles all aspects of wet and dry shipping litigation. Julian Clark recently joined Hill Dickinson LLP.

The team at Kennedys was bolstered by the acquisition of boutique shipping and marine practice Waltons & Morse in 2016. The team is praised for its ability to β€˜fully understand the current markets’ and for its β€˜no-nonsense approach’. Its expertise covers dry shipping and charterparty disputes, as well as marine insurance and casualty mandates. Christopher Dunn’s β€˜knowledge is second-to-none’; he β€˜understands the individual needs of the client’. Dunn heads the team, which includes David Mckie, who handles marine insurance, shipping, shipbuilding and international arbitration disputes; marine insurance expert Graeme Baird; Jonathan Evans, who specialises in insurance and shipping disputes; the β€˜professional’ Andrew Purssell; and the β€˜extremely well versed’ Mark Lloyd. Consultant David Perry, Eric Sumner and Mark Lloyd are also recommended, as are senior associates John Langley and β€˜future star’ Shaan Burton.

MFB handles a range of shipping work for shipowners, charterers, P&I Clubs and other insurers. Andrew Wright, Mark Seward and Gerard Hopkins regularly advise on contentious matters. Eduardo Prim was recently promoted to partner. Andrew Hughes, Simon Wolsey and Edward Gray are also recommended.

A true specialist in maritime and international trade, Mills & Co. Solicitors Limited handles the full range of contentious matters, and is regularly involved in high-value arbitrations. It is also adept at handling non-contentious shipping-related instructions. Clients include marine insurers, shipowners, ship managers, shipbuilders, ship repairers, charterers, commodity traders and marine suppliers. Key figures include Guy Mills, who specialises in dry shipping, casualty work and shipbuilding; Martin Dalby, who handles casualty work; and Michael Smith, who is β€˜great on the details’. Nicola Jeanes, Simon Williams, Andreas Welz and Jonathan Green are also recommended.

Norton Rose Fulbright’s β€˜excellent’ shipping team acts for international shipowners, ship managers, charterers, cargo owners, ports, shipyards, banks, trading houses and marine insurers on high-profile disputes. It is advising Lloyd’s Syndicates in relation to current claims brought against Starlight and others arising out of the sinking of Starlight’s vessel, the β€˜Alexandros T’, and is acting for London market war risk insurers in the defence of claims following an alleged piracy attack on a crude oil tanker in July 2011. It is also advising the owners of the vessel β€˜Baru Satu’ as well as its insurers after a collision off the coast of Greece. Philip Roche heads the department, which includes Patrick Foss, who is β€˜exceptional on disputes’; Charlotte Winter (who is β€˜a star’); and the β€˜brilliant’ Chris Zavos. Jo Ward, Kevin Austin and Peter Glover, who are all of counsel, are also recommended.

Thomas Cooper LLP handles a range of wet and dry shipping-related mandates, with an emphasis on cargo claims, marine casualty, insurance, piracy, shipbuilding, and contractual disputes. Wet work specialist Darryl Kennard heads the team, which includes Tim Kelleher, who handles commercial disputes; dry shipping specialist Ceri Done; Tom Moisley, who handles casualty matters; and Richard Morris, who advises on collisions and salvage matters. Lisa Hillary, Charles Williams, John Strange, Rachel Mills and Ben Browne are also recommended. James Severn and Nick Donnelly were promoted to partner, and Mark Sachs recently relocated to the London office to lead the Japan and China team.

Winter Scott LLP handles a range of contentious shipping mandates, including charterparty disputes and insurance matters. It also handles commercial mandates. Recommended individuals include the β€˜experienced’ Glenn Winter, admiralty specialist Ken Scott, Tim Houghton, and Christopher Wood, who handles a range of shipping disputes.

Specialist shipping and commodities firm Waterson Hicks stands out for its β€˜excellent response times’ and for the β€˜high level of knowledge’ in the team. It handles dry shipping, admiralty, marine insurance, shipbuilding disputes, collision and cargo claims. It is particularly noted for its expertise in ship speed and consumption disputes. The firm acts for shipowners, P&I clubs, state-owned organisations, oil companies and commodities traders, and has a vast Greek shipowner client base, acting for some of the largest ship managers in Greece. John Hicks β€˜spends the time understanding the client’s needs and finds quick and commercial solutions’. Consultant Julian Morgan is experienced in shipping disputes, and admiralty manager Stuart Parkin is β€˜first-rate’. Barrister John Bignall is also a consultant at the firm.

Watson Farley & Williams LLP is β€˜especially strong in the ship finance sector’ but also fields a team of β€˜exceptional litigators’ that acts for banks in enforcing loans and ship mortgages, and handles a range of disputes arising from shipbuilding, including sale and purchase contracts, bareboat and voyage charterparties, and management agreements. The team advised Sinoriches, a Chinese shipping company, in a dispute against dry bulk owner and operator Polaris, in relation to an LMAA arbitration award. Andrew Savage is β€˜brilliant on disputes’; Andrew Hutcheon β€˜can pick the bones out of a problem in minutes’; β€˜ferocious negotiator’ Robert Platt is a commercial contracts and dispute resolution lawyer; Charles Buss is β€˜energetic, creative and never gives up in trying to get a result for the client’; and Andrew Ward advises on contentious matters. Rob Fidoe recently re-joined the London office from Bangkok.

The β€˜superb’ team at Wikborg Rein handles a range of shipping and offshore mandates including large casualties and marine insurance matters. Notable highlights included acting for the ferry owners and Gard in a casualty matter relating to a ferry fire in 2015, and representing the owners of β€˜APL Temasek’ on its collision with a container crane in Egypt at the Suez Canal Terminal. London-based managing partner Clare Calnan heads the shipping and offshore group, which includes Chris Grieveson, who handles casualty work; Rob Jardine-Brown, who β€˜is quite brilliant, intelligent, engaging and very popular with clients’, and leads on shipbuilding instructions; and Nick Shepherd, who has a strong following for Greek shipping mandates. Mike Stewart, who is β€˜a good strategist and immensely hardworking’, joined from K&L Gates in 2016. Birgitte Karlsen and Jonathan Page are also recommended.

Birketts LLP’s β€˜responsive team’ has β€˜good industry knowledge and experience’ and handles disputes relating to bills of lading, charterparties, cargo claims, shipbuilding, marine insurance, cruise and ferry line operation, as well as handling salvage, ship arrest and collision claims. West of England, Tradhol Internacional, Raets Marine Insurance, Allianz Global & Speciality France and AXA Corporate Solutions Assurances are clients. Nicholas Woo heads the team, which includes Alex Davey, who β€˜takes a very commercial, pragmatic approach and has good sector expertise’; he handles defence work for shipowners and charterers. Also recommended are Henry Adams, who handles disputes involving cargo damage, as well as marine insurance disputes, and Lisa Wortley, who advises on charterparty disputes and cargo claims.

Gateley Plc’s β€˜excellent’ department handles dry shipping disputes, including marine cargo claims, charterparty and shipbuilding disputes, and also acts on transactional matters relating to the construction, sale, purchase and chartering of small commercial ships. It also has an β€˜experienced’ yacht team. Highlights included advising Fulton Shipping, the former owners of the cruise ship β€˜New Flamenco’, in a charter agreement dispute. Paul Dickie and Nicholas Walser head the team, which includes the β€˜experienced’ Bruce Virgo; Jane Hobbs, who advises on marine and insurance matters; and Andrew Messent, who β€˜gives straight replies’ and handles cargo disputes.

Recently merged firm Haynes and Boone CDG, LLP has β€˜a good understanding of client needs’ and is β€˜very strong’ on transactional and contentious shipping mandates, with particular expertise in shipbuilding and conversion matters. It is acting for Italian shipyard Fincantieri - Cantieri Navali Italiani in a dispute brought by Saga Cruises BDF, the owner of a cruise ship, and Acromas Shipping, who chartered the vessel from Saga Cruises, relating to the refit of the vessel. It is also representing Teekay Tankers and subsidiaries in claims arising from four shipbuilding contracts and an option agreement with STX Offshore and Shipbuilding Cofor the delivery of up to 16 tankers. Practice head Simon Curtis is noted for shipbuilding and offshore procurement matters, while contentious department head William Cecil(who is β€˜wise, sensible and knowledgeable’) and is noted for shipbuilding disputes. Also recommended are James Brown, who specialises in high-value technical disputes, the β€˜excellent’ Andreas Dracoulis and Andreas Silcher are also recommended.

Specialist marine firm Jackson Parton Solicitors handles wet and dry matters, insurance and related litigation and non-contentious mandates for public limited companies, Lloyd’s, P&I and FD&D clubs and shipping and insurance companies. Nick Parton, Nils Dahl Nielsen, Andrew Patrinos, Jonathan Clyne and Maria Gerakaris-Michanitzis are recommended, as are consultant David Hughes and newly promoted partner Alex Askew.

Keystone Law’s β€˜reactive, efficient and knowledgeable’ team handles a range of contentious and non-contentious shipping mandates including insurance disputes, collisions, salvage claims and charterparty disputes. It is particularly noted for its yachting and superyacht sector expertise. Key figures include Jonathan Hadley-Piggin, who focuses on the yachting sector. Andrew Hignett and Ian Sellars are also recommended. Daniel Crockford and Alex Penberthy joined Keoghs LLP.

Lax & Co LLP’s β€˜outstanding’ team provides a β€˜personal service’ and β€˜practical advice’. Highlights included acting for MUR Joint Ventures in a dispute with Compagnie Monegasque de Banque. Team head Mike Lax handles shipping and international trade matters, including arbitration, charterparties, bills of lading, and salvage and collision work. He is assisted by Stuart Dench, who advises on chaterparty and bills of lading disputes, in addition to shipbuilding contracts and sale and purchase disputes; Imogen Rumbold, who handles commodities disputes; and Robert Pollock-Hill.

Andrew Jackson Solicitors LLP β€˜punches well above its weight’ and has a β€˜tight-knit team that works hard and achieves great results for its clients’. It handles contractual and commercial issues, as well as casualties and cargo claims. Department head Dominic Ward is β€˜extremely thoughtful, pragmatic and brings a realistic and commercial approach to all his cases’. Andrew Oliver heads the sea fisheries, regulatory and marine environment unit as well as the ship transactional and finance team.

Established in 2015, BDM Law LLP is a β€˜motivated and responsive’ boutique shipping firm that handles maritime casualties, shipping and maritime insurance and shipbuilding disputes. It is acting for the insurers of a superyacht which was gutted by a fire at a marina in Turkey, and is representing the owners and insurers of the β€˜Kalliopi RC’ on a salvage claim. Nick Burgess is β€˜proactive yet balanced in his responses, with a keen sense of the commercial aspects of a case’. The β€˜pragmatic and thorough’ Bob Deering and David McInnes are also recommended.

DLA Piper handles a range of shipping disputes for blue-chip international shipping and logistics companies, utlitising the firm’s global network for cross-border cases. It is acting for the liquidators of OW Bunkers in a case against ING Bank for the recovery of some of the assigned bunker supplier receipts collected by ING Bank pursuant to security arrangements under a $700m revolving credit facility. The team is also acting for the the liquidating trustee of OW Bunkers in numerous arbitrations against shipowners in order to collect unpaid bunker receipts following the conclusion of the β€˜Res Cogitans’ case in the Supreme Court. Marine practice head Linos Choo handles ship finance and shipbuilding disputes and is particularly active in the Greek and Far East markets.

DWF regularly handles large disputes for marine insurers with a piracy, theft or detention of cargo angle, and is increasingly instructed on non-contentious shipping matters. It is advising Cronimet in two cargo disputes, and is advising a leading independent insurer on a novel claim regarding a vessel that was struck by a whale and sank off the coast of Mexico. Shipping and commodities head Jonathan Moss is β€˜able to identify the real issues in a case’ and is β€˜not afraid to recommend commercial solutions where appropriate’. The β€˜well-respected’ Michael Kingston handles shipping and marine insurance disputes, and has particular expertise in Arctic Circle issues and wreck removal.

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP advises shipowner, charterer and insurer clients on international trade and the movement of goods. Team head Stephen Mackin handles dry shipping litigation, with a particular focus on oil, gas and LNG. Jessica Maitra advises on contentious and non-contentious matters including shipping contracts, marine insurance and international trade.

The β€˜fast and efficient’ team at M Taher & Co Solicitors handles a range of shipping, marine insurance, international trade and commodities matters, and is particularly noted for its sanctions experience. The team acts for shipowners, charterers, P&I Clubs, shipbrokers, commodities trading houses, major insurance companies, insurance brokers, recovery agents, freight-forwarders, and oil and gas corporations. Maryam Taher and shipping and commodities head Andrew Ridings are the key contacts.

Specialist shipping firm Mays Brown acts for owners, operators, charterers, P&I clubs, and underwriters on disputes. Joe Mays, David Wartski and Stephen Grainger are key figures.

Squire Patton Boggs’ β€˜outstanding’ team handles a range of mandates in the shipping sector including instructions relating to bills of lading, collisions, groundings, salvage and pollution, insurance and re-insurance, shipbuilding, piracy and sanctions, often utilising its international network of offices to advise on cross-border mandates. Essar Oilfield Services, Oriental Express Lines (Singapore) and Cedar Petrochemicals are clients. Graham arris is a β€˜highly experienced and knowledgeable shipping lawyer’, who is β€˜not afraid to think outside of the box’; and β€˜formidable tactician’ Dharmendra Nair is β€˜commercially astute’ and a β€˜fantastic team player’, who β€˜understands the client’s needs and concerns completely’.

The β€˜experienced’ team at Weightmans LLP advises on marine disputes, and regularly handles marine casualties. It also acts in contractual claims arising under charterparties, bills of lading and other contracts of carriage, in addition to cargo loss and damage incidents. Highlights included representing Champion Tankers in claims and liability issues relating to the grounding of the β€˜Siteam Anja’. Head of marine Phil James has substantial ports and terminals expertise, advising on port liability incidents and regulatory matters. Consultant Mike Burns advises ship operators and insurers on commercial contracts and disputes. Terry Donaghy is also recommended.

International comparative guides

Giving the in-house community greater insight to the law and regulations in different jurisdictions.

Select Practice Area

GC Diversity and Inclusion Report

In partnership with...

Press releases

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to

Legal Developments in the UK

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to

Press Releases in the UK

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to