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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In the United Kingdon, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for eight years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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United Kingdom > Yorkshire and the Humber > Dispute resolution > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



Banking litigation

Index of tables

  1. Banking litigation
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Rising stars

Leading individuals: Hall of Fame

  1. 1

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Rising stars

  1. 1

Addleshaw Goddard's banking litigation team acts for a range of major UK banks and 'consistently delivers high-quality legal advice and litigation services in a cost-effective manner.' Practice head Sally Emerton is 'very experienced but willing to get her hands dirty' and has 'good strategic instincts'; she focuses on representing major retail and commercial banks, while Ben Lowans has a particular specialism in asset finance matters including marine and aviation finance, and fraud-based litigation. The group also fields several talented managing associates including  the 'intellectually able and extremely hardworking' Steve Walpole, 'up-and-coming star' Samantha Hollingworth, Jennifer Hedley, who is noted for her alternative dispute resolution expertise; and Matthew Dibb, who handles a range of strategic disputes. Ian Hastings retired.

Practice head(s):Sally Emerton

Other key lawyers:Ben Lowans; Steve Walpole; Jennifer Hedley; Samantha Hollingworth; Matthew Dibb


'Addleshaw Goddard has the ability to explain complex legal situations to non-legally trained people and boasts in-depth knowledge of the sector.'

'Addleshaw Goddard has exceptional experience in retail banking litigation; the practice takes control of cases at an early stage and knows how to navigate them to a successful outcome for the client.'

'Addleshaw Goddard's banking litigation group is well-resourced, which allows it to engage in more detail and deploy that knowledge at an early stage. It is as good as any London team.'

'Addleshaw Goddard is pragmatic and user friendly, has good attention to detail, and is a go-to supplier for trickier matters.'

'Addleshaw Goddard has the ability to quickly react when required to allow it to secure assets, covering all aspects of the situation and providing excellent advice in very difficult circumstances.'

'Sally Emerton provides business-focused advice on the issue in hand, and is sensitive to costs and outcomes.'

'Managing associate Steve Walpole is very hardworking, personable and pleasant, and always on top of the law. He explores solutions creatively, and always keeps his focus on the practical needs and aims of the client.'

'Managing associate Samantha Hollingworth is proactive, her correspondence is perfectly pitched and she is adept at finding the evidence that will lead to the speedy resolution of a case.'

'Managing associate Matthew Dibb is easy to work with and popular with clients.'

Key Clients

HSBC Bank Plc

Shawbrook Bank

Yorkshire Building Society

West Bromwich Building Society

Aldermore Bank PLC

Nationwide Building Society

Close Bank Plc

Santander UK Plc

Alphabet Leasing

Hewlett Packard International Bank

Work highlights

  • Defended Barclays Bank in  a £17m claim brought by a former corporate customer.
  • Represented  Deutsche Leasing in a dispute relating to the breach of two finance leases by Zaskin College and the breach of a personal guarantee.

DLA Piper UK LLP's banking and financial services litigation team continues to receive instructions from high-profile financial services clients on a range of contentious issues. The group fields individuals across its Leeds and Sheffield offices and is praised by clients as 'one of the strongest banking litigation practices outside London.' Adam Ibrahim heads up the practice and is singled out for handling disputes involving complex financial products including derivatives and foreign exchange transactions, cyber crime issues and related fraud matters, while senior consultant Hugh Evans is active in advising lenders. The team also includes legal directors Sohail Ali, who specialises in complex banking fraud matters; Sharon Duncan who acts for a range of corporates and mortgage providers; and Chris Harvey, whose experience ranges from professional negligence and mis-selling claims to complex possession actions.

Practice head(s):Adam Ibrahim

Other key lawyers:Hugh Evans; Sohail Ali; Sharon Duncan; Chris Harvey


'DLA Piper UK LLP has deep experience and knowledge of the sector and is able to manage large and medium disputes with ease. It has an excellent reputation in the market.'

'DLA Piper UK LLP's banking litigation team is able to provide high-quality work at regional rates. It has a fantastic knowledge of the latest legal developments.'

'DLA Piper UK LLP's banking litigation team has a deep knowledge of retail banking litigation. It is rare that an issue arises in a case that someone in the team has not encountered before.'

'Sheffield-based senior associate Barney Connell is superb, responsive, bright, gives sensible and strategic advice.'

'Hugh Evans is immensely helpful and prepared to help clients at a moment's notice on any issue that is problematic or challenging. He has a huge depth of knowledge across legal developments and case law and can talk on any industry subject with knowledge and conviction.'

'Legal director Chris Harvey is a smart and pragmatic lawyer. He always manages to provide advice in a client focused commercial manner as opposed to lawyer speak.'

'Adam Ibrahim provides good client management; straightforward and easy going while having good focus on getting the job done.'

'Legal director Sohail Ali is organised and efficient and on top of the detail of a case. Very straightforward to work with.'

Key Clients

Alpha Bank


Bank of Ireland

Barclays Bank

Clydesdale Bank

GE Capital

HSBC Bank Plc

Leeds Building Society

Lloyds Banking Group (incl HBOS)

Metro Bank Plc

PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP

The Royal Bank of Scotland Group (incl Nat West & Lombard)


Skipton Building Society

Standard Chartered Bank

Sun Capital

Work highlights

  • Defended Bank of Scotland in a £39m claim brought by the former shareholders of a bank customer alleging fraud and conspiracy.
  • Acting for Alpha Bank in the enforcement  of a judgment of the Athens Court of First Instance.

Walker Morris LLP handles the full range of contentious matters for its impressive financial services client roster. Louise Power heads up the team and focuses on financial litigation involving secured lending elements including multi-jurisdictional fraud issues and surveyors negligence claims. Other names to note include Richard Sandford, whose experience ranges from secured and unsecured debt recovery to professional negligence claims; Andrew Beck, who is a key contact for fraud investigations, and multi-jurisdictional debt and asset recovery partner Rob Aberdein.

Practice head(s):Louise Power

Other key lawyers:Richard Sandford; Andrew Beck; Rob Aberdein


'The banking litigation team at Walker Morris LLP is very approachable and knowledgeable,  quick to respond and proactive with making suggestions and improvements.'

'Director Justin Coley is very supportive and highly professional and diligent in responding to client queries with urgency. He brings a clear and balanced line of advice to a varied range of topics.'

Key Clients

Lloyds Banking Group

Leeds Building Society

Yorkshire Building Society

Co-operative Bank

Admiral Financial Services


Bank of Ireland

Skipton Building Society

Furness Building Society

Atom Bank

Work highlights

  • Assisted FundingSecure with the securing a worldwide freezing injunction over the assets of the defendant after it was discovered that it had fraudulently obtained a number of loans.
  • Successfully represented TMB in an appeal against a district judge's summary judgment made in the client's favour.

Gateley Plc's financial disputes and regulation team counts a range of high-profile financial institutions including banks, building societies and other finance providers among its client base, and handles a variety of matters including asset finance disputes and financial services regulatory matters. James Baird, who is based in Birmingham, heads up the practice, which includes Leeds-based partners Rob Payne and new arrival Roger McCourt, who joined from Dentons; Payne and McCourt have experience assisting financial services sector clients.

Practice head(s):James Baird

Other key lawyers:Rob Payne; Roger McCourt

Key Clients

Macquarie Equipment Finance UK Limited

Henry Howard Finance Plc

Scania Finance Great Britain Limited

Arkle Finance Limited

Tower Leasing Limited

Grenke Leasing Limited

Kennet Equipment Leasing Limited

CIAC Corporation Inc

Cambridge & Counties Bank Limited

Work highlights

  • Representing a large UK clearing bank in the recovery of the proceeds of a £15m fraud.
  • Representing a regulated debt purchaser in negligence claims arising out of an FCA investigation.
  • Represented a major clearing bank in the complex title rectification of multiple properties.
  • Represented a major clearing bank in a £4.4m fraud under an invoice discounting facility.
  • Representing a clearing bank in a complex Libor-linked possession action regarding a major development site.

Gordons LLP acts for a range of commercial lenders, fixed charge and Law of Property Act receivers and corporate pension trustees across the full spectrum of banking disputes. The group's experience encompasses realising security of property, pursuing guarantors and professional negligence claims and also advising on operational loss issues.


'Gordons LLP takes a strategic view from the outset as to the likely course of litigation and, where a defence raised is novel, ensures the proper time and thought is taken at the outset so that the client proceeds on the right path from the earliest opportunity.'

Key Clients

Goldcrest Finance Limited

Goldcrest Distribution Ltd

James Hay Pension Trustees Limited

Computershare Mortgage Service


Work highlights

  • Acted for a clearing bank in a claim brought by two guarantors relating to a commercial lending, successfully obtaining a summary judgment.
  • Acted for a corporate SIPP trustee, which faced two High Court actions in Manchester by an SIPP scheme’s current trustee and the scheme member, alleging negligence and breach of duty following an alleged failure to collect commercial rent arrears.
  • Acted for Goldcrest Distribution in enforcing a legal charge given to support a guarantee and indemnity.

Squire Patton Boggs is instructed by a range of financial institutions, handling the full spectrum of litigation and international arbitration with particular expertise in asset-based lending and fraud-related work. Manchester-based Anthony Taylor heads up the team, which includes Simon Miller in Leeds; Miller has particular experience assisting high-profile financial services clients with professional negligence claims.

Practice head(s):Anthony Taylor

Other key lawyers:Simon Miller;

Commercial litigation: Hull and East Yorkshire

Index of tables

  1. Commercial litigation: Hull and East Yorkshire
  2. Leading individuals

Leading individuals

  1. 1

The team at Andrew Jackson Solicitors LLP has a breadth of experience in contentious matters, ranging from commercial and corporate governance matters to contentious probate, regulatory food law, debt recovery and insolvency. Practice head Hugh Smith handles mediations, shareholder and director disputes, professional negligence claims, injunctions, restrictive covenants disputes and economic torts. Other names to note include property litigator Nick Dean, Peter Duffus, who assists clients with a range of commercial litigation; shipping expert Andrew Oliver and insolvency specialist Christopher Harrison. Health and safety litigator Jeff Swales moved to rradar.

Practice head(s):Hugh Smith

Other key lawyers:Nick Dean; Peter Duffus; Andrew Oliver; Christopher Harrison


'Andrew Jackson has a strong emphasis on speedy and cost-efficient resolution of disputes.'

'It is extremely efficient and flexible in its approach to cases.'

'Peter Duffus sees clearly through the problems and quickly finds the right solution.'

'Nick Dean's experience is highly valuable.'

'Peter Duffus is very knowledgeable and extraordinarily tenacious.'

Key Clients

Kingstown Works Limited

Christopher Healy and the Trustees of the Westerby Pension fund

BHP Chartered Accountants

Associated British Ports

Carpetright PLC

Work highlights

  • Advised BHP Chartered Accountants on a cross-border dispute relating to the sale of a software business.
  • Representing Christopher Healy and the Trustees of the Westerby Pension fund in a construction dispute involving a dilapidations claim and structural engineering issues following a sunken floor.

Gosschalks' commercial litigation group is noted for its retail and gambling sector expertise and also has experience across construction, insolvency, professional negligence, compulsory purchase, pylons wayleave compensation and shareholder disputes.  Matthew Fletcher heads up the team and has a particular strength in construction disputes, while Steve Dillon is a key name for insolvency and corporate recovery matters, and Phil Osborne focuses on breach of contract and professional negligence claims.

Practice head(s):Matthew Fletcher

Other key lawyers:Steve Dillon; Phil Osborne

Key Clients

William Hill Plc

Ei Group Plc

Wellington Pub Company Plc


Svenska Handelsbanken - Hull and Hesslewood Offices

Kingspan Group Plc


Checkpoint Group

Arnold White Estates Limited

Costcutter Supermarkets


Coachman Caravan Company Limited

The commercial litigation team at Rollits LLP has expertise in shareholder and partnership disputes, sale of goods and product liability cases, business protection matters and construction disputes, with particular experience assisting clients in the motor retail and education sectors. Practice head George Coyle regularly handles warranty claims, shareholder and partnership disputes and contract and product liability claims, while Ralph Gilbert focuses on property litigation. Other names to note include Caroline Hardcastle for construction disputes, Andrew Digwood for contentious IP matters, Christopher Drinkall, who is experienced in handling dilapidation disputes and contentious lease renewals; and regulatory defence lawyer Jennifer Sewell.

Practice head(s):George Coyle

Other key lawyers:Ralph Gilbert; Caroline Hardcastle; Andrew Digwood; Christopher Drinkall; Jennifer Sewell


'George Coyle's advice is very practical and he understands the client's need for a quick commercial settlement rather than legal perfection in all cases.'

Key Clients

Cranswick PLC

Allam Marine Limited

Hull City Tigers Limited

Leeds City College

Ideal Standard (UK) Limited

Walker Modular Limited

Yorkshire Housing Limited

J R Rix & Sons Limited

Fenner PLC

Premier Technical Services Group PLC

Superstadium Management  Company Ltd

Fine Organics Limited

Stoneacre Motor Group

Work highlights

  • Representing a chemical manufacturer in a dispute relating to a product, which was supplied in an alleged contaminated state.
  • Acted for a client in urgent proceedings to protect its business interests against former senior executives seeking to divert contracts away from the client.
  • Acting for a manufacturer of modular pods in  a number of disputes with contractors including allegations of defective design and workmanship and the associated claims for loss of expense and remedial works.
  • Assisted a client in a tripartite dilapidations disputes.
  • Acted for a former director in a petition for unfair prejudice and valuation mechanism in a shareholders agreement.

Bridge McFarland is instructed by local family-owned companies, SMEs and private clients in a range of contentious work including commercial disputes, clinical negligence and personal injury claims and real estate matters. Rob Ripley, who focuses on contract, shareholder and director disputes and professional negligence claims, heads up the team, which also includes Mike Wilson, whose experience encompasses the construction, engineering, logistics, professional services and sport sectors; and property litigator Lydia Hamnett.

Practice head(s):Rob Ripley

Other key lawyers:Mike Wilson; Lydia Hamnett


'Bridge McFarland has a highly capable litigation team with substantial experience of employee competition matters.'

'Bridge McFarland's dispute resolution team benefits from strong local connections.'

'Mike Wilson is an exceptionally good litigator. He is calm and clear headed and experienced in dealing with injunction proceedings against ex-employees.'

Key Clients

Associated Cold Stores & Transport

Begbies Traynor

Bristow Helicopters/Eastern Airways

Coletta & Tyson

HETA (Humberside Engineering Training


John Good Shipping

Lincoln City Football Club

MKM Building Supplies

Nautilus International

Online Design & Engineering Limited

Redman Nichols Butler

Work highlights

  • Represented Specialist Engineering Services in a £1.2m damages claims against a manufacturer and UK distributor of specialist vehicles, which has serious design defects.

Commercial litigation: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire

Index of tables

  1. Commercial litigation: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next Generation Partners
  5. Rising stars

Leading individuals: Hall of Fame

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Rising stars

  1. 1

Addleshaw Goddard has 'a proactive and commercial view' and handles a range of commercial disputes as well as 'assisting clients with planning to minimise the risk of needing to invoke dispute resolution'. The team has the ability to operate internationally and acts for a range of local, national and global clients, with particular experience in the energy, IT, industrials, transport and health sectors. The team is jointly led by Simon Kamstra, Bill Gilliam and Sally Emerton; Kamstra acts in international disputes and arbitrations with a focus on the energy, aviation, manufacturing sectors alongside expertise in judicial reviews and public law; Gilliam has expertise in procurement challenges, IT projects, M&A claims, supply and outsourcing disputes, and Emerton is a finance disputes specialist. Louise Dobson is another key name, particularly for her knowledge of the health and pharmaceuticals, local government and retail sectors.

Practice head(s):Simon Kamstra; Bill Gilliam; Sally Emerton

Other key lawyers:Louise Dobson


'Addleshaw Goddard's strong commercial litigation team is not only legally astute but able to provide practical and commercial advice.'

'Addleshaw Goddard provides excellent strategic advice and supports the client's long-term strategic planning.'

'Simon Kamstra is a knowledgeable and commercially astute solicitor.'

'Bill Gilliam is a very good practitioner.'

'Ryan Geldert is an excellent associate, quick to respond and has a good grasp of the law and the commercial realities.'

'Associate Marie Broadhead gives excellent advice in a timely manner, helps to plan client's long-term strategies, gives pragmatic advice an,d at the same time, comprehensively covers the technical detail so as to minimise risk.'

Key Clients

Diageo plc

SSE plc

McKesson UK (including Lloyds Pharmacy Limited and AAH Pharmaceuticals)

Crown Commercial Services

NHS Commercial Solutions Framework

Work highlights

  • Advising a major engineering business on  streamlining and enhancing its internal processes for pursuing and defending claims arising in its supply chain.
  • Acted for SSE as an intervenor in judicial review proceedings brought by various embedded generator claimants challenging an Ofgem decision.
  • Acted for Raphaels in a claim brought by Zebra Finance under a credit broking and outsourced services agreement.

DLA Piper UK LLP has broad expertise across several areas including competition law disputes, contract management claims and international arbitration. Practice head David Young has particular experience in pensions law, trusts issues, competition law and judicial reviews, while Simon Kenyon is key name for technology disputes and Paul Stone is particularly active in public and administrative law matters and contentious procurement mandates.

Practice head(s):David Young

Other key lawyers:Simon Kenyon; Paul Stone


'The team understands the client's needs and gives sound advice based on business needs.'

'DLA Piper UK LLP continues to be a top-tier local firm in commercial litigation in Leeds. The team is consistently professional and effective in its work and communication with regular meetings, emails and telephone conversations from key individuals, allowing for a smooth delivery of legal services. Beyond this, it makes a concerted effort to become familiar with the workings and processes of its client, making it clear that it cares by providing appropriate expertise in order to deliver the best results.'

'Simon Kenyon is always very responsive, answering questions quickly and navigating difficult situations.'

'Paul Stone remains an excellent and trusted adviser.'

'David Young is very calm and strategic.'

'Kathryn Ford is very competent.'

Key Clients

British Airways

Wipro Limited

Birmingham city council

Hitachi Rail Europe

Work highlights

  • Represented Hitachi Rail in its challenge to the award of a £1bn contract by London Underground to a competitor.
  • Acted for Birmingham City Council in a £1bn PFI contract dispute with Amey.
  • Defended Polycom in £10m claim brought by trading partner, Ashton Bentley.
  • Defended Merseytravel in four separate claims brought by Bombardier relating to the award of £600m rolling stock contracts.
  • Acting for Highways England in £70m dispute with an M25 maintenance provider.

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP advises its impressive client roster on a range of contentious matters, with experience handling high-profile litigation and international arbitrations. Gary Pellow (who heads up the commercial litigation group nationally) jointly leads the practice alongside product liability and procurement disputes expert Richard Matthews, and international head of TMT disputes James Hyde. The group's other specialisms include energy disputes, for which Mark Howarth is a key name to note; Chris Buddle focuses on the food and retail, industrial engineering, defence and waste resources sectors, and Deborah Polden is developing a growing expertise in unfair prejudice claims and breach of confidence and restrictive covenant cases.

Practice head(s):Gary Pellow; Richard Matthews; James Hyde

Other key lawyers:Mark Howarth; Chris Buddle; Deborah Polden

Key Clients


McCain Foods

EDF Energy


Johnson Matthey




John Lewis

Yum! Brands (KFC and Pizza Hut)

Work highlights

  • Successfully represented the Canal & River Trust (CRT) before the Court of Appeal in a dispute relating to the price to be paid by Thames Water for water abstracted from a waterway owned and managed by CRT and sold by Thames to its corporate customers and consumers.
  • Acting for a leading automotive part manufacturer in a significant claim before the English High Court arising from a fatality on a motorway in France.
  • Assisted several leading retailers and transport companies in high-profile interchange fee competition litigation against Mastercard and Visa.
  • Acted for the National Iranian Oil Company as defendant in one of the world’s largest oil and gas disputes, in which claimants seek damages in excess of $15bn.
  • Successfully represented Agents’ Mutual in the Competition Tribunal and Court of Appeal in litigation against estate agents, Gascoigne Halman alleging breach of contract.

Boutique litigation firm Stewarts Law LLP has the scope to handle a range of high-value complex commercial disputes. The group is particularly highly regarded for its experience in fraud and corruption, cartel damages claims, IT disputes and financial services litigation. Mo Bhaskaran is noted for his expertise in complex disputes and heads up the practice, which includes 'experienced litigator' Kate Pollock, Martin Walsh, who leads the firm's technology-sector disputes department, and recently promoted partner Nick Haworth.

Practice head(s):Mo Bhaskaran

Other key lawyers:Kate Pollock; Martin Walsh; Nick Haworth


'Stewarts Law LLP is a boutique litigation firm with strong expertise in competition damages cases.'

'Stewarts Law stands out for its ability to delve into litigation, investigate every aspect minutely and think outside the box.'

'The team is fast-moving, always dynamic and energetic, while at the same time being highly meticulous.'

'Kate Pollock has a keen eye for detail and a willingness to go the extra mile for clients.'

'Kate Pollock is a delight to work with.'

'Mo Bhaskaran is especially clever, experienced, strategic and good with clients and opponents.'

'Nick Haworth is incredibly bright, responsive, commercial, and responsive with skills and knowledge that go way beyond what you would necessarily expect from a lawyer, which means that he takes away from you a lot of the investigative work needed for litigation. He is also easy and fun to work with, making the whole litigation experience far better than it might otherwise be.'

Key Clients

Marks & Spencer

Iiyama Corporation

Asda Group Limited

Wm Morrison plc

Home Retail Group plc

BlueOak Capital LLC

Niamac (formerly trading as Safeglaze UK)

Work highlights

  • Acting for Asda Stores, Home Retail Group and Wm Morrison Supermarkets against MasterCard to recover damages for cartel activity. Following a favorable judgement for the claimants at the Court of Appeal, the defendant has been granted permission to appeal to the Supreme Court.
  • Defended Niamac (formerly trading as Safeglaze UK) and others in a trading dispute brought by Safestyle UK relating to the alleged theft of confidential information, poaching staff, passing off, trade mark infringement and other allegations.
  • Acting for iiyama (UK) in a cartel damages claim relating to the manufacturer of LCD screens.
  • Assisting BlueOak Arkansas with an urgent application made for the release of an interim injunction obtained by Tetronics UK preventing HSBC from paying out on a £4.5m on-demand guarantee.
  • Instructed by the Public Institute for Social Security, Kuwait in a claim issued against Man Group for bribes estimated to be in excess of $80m.

Praised for its 'attention to detail, strategic planning and forward thinking', the practice at Walker Morris LLP acts for a range of local, regional and international clients including large UK housebuilders, US-headquartered industrial companies and Western European-based energy companies. Team head Gwendoline Davies is experienced in handling pensions litigation, trade disputes, contentious corporate and partnership matters, product liability issues, nuisance claims and technology sector disputes; Malcolm Simpson has notable expertise in the manufacturing, automotive, power generation, property development and technology sectors, and Nick Lees has particular knowledge of the food and drink sector.

Practice head(s):Gwendoline Davies

Other key lawyers:Malcolm Simpson; Nick Lees;


'Malcolm Simpson is a conscientious lawyer who does a good job.'

'The skillful and intelligent way that Walker Morris LLP  disarms and collapses any opposing arguments that are not founded on the White Book or factual matters of law and process brings a refreshing sigh of relief that they are your lawyers and not the opponents.'

'Walker Morris LLP fields a first-rate team doing superb quality work, outshining many firms based in London.'

'With great leadership by Gwendoline Davies, the team at Walker Morris LLP employs a commercial and tactical approach linked to good technical knowledge.'

Key Clients

Persimmon plc


Caterpillar Group




LF Europe (part of Li & Fung)


Alexander Dennis

Johnson Controls

Wright Leisure Limited (t/a Xercise4less)




1st in Rail

Mibelle (part of Migros)

Work highlights

  • Advising the liquidators of Changtel Solutions in a High Court claim for £38m against the former director involving allegations that the company was knowingly used as a vehicle for fraud and asset dissipation.
  • Acting the former CEO of Kings Security Systems in a dispute between the King family and the investors.

Pinsent Masons LLP handles a broad range of contractual and tortious disputes, particularly in the manufacturing, engineering and chemicals, technology and outsourcing and higher education sectors. Practice head Andrew Masterson specialises in product liability, pensions and IT disputes, while legal director Louise Nahon is particularly strong in engineering-related cases. Pensions litigator Julian Sladdin and James McBurney, who handles a range of corporate litigation, are other names to note.

Practice head(s):Andrew Masterson

Other key lawyers:Julian Sladdin; James McBurney;


'The Leeds team of Pinsent Masons has all of the capabilities of a London-based practice but with the advantages of lower pricing and, critically, far higher partner involvement in a given case. This has allowed it to build up an enviable practice of commercial work from all over the UK (including London) along with international disputes.'

'The team skilfully defends against very difficult and complex issues with absolute attention to detail and analytical thinking, which create a robust and thorough defence. It demonstrates perseverance, patience, absolute legal understanding, superb analytical thinking, dominant negotiating skills, the ability to always give clear and sound advice and guidance, and an overall high level of intellect.'

'The calibre of the team, led by James McBurney, is demonstrated by the national and international nature of its work. It has the strength in depth and capability to deal with large-scale disputes.'

'James McBurney is an excellent lawyer who genuinely cares about the cases he works on and ensures that he gives each case his full attention. He has a good understanding of the commercial value of a claim and is an expert at achieving an outstanding result for his clients but is prepared to take claims to trial if a settlement cannot be reached.'

'James McBurney is a reliable and experienced litigator who "gets the job done". He has a keen eye for detail and is closely involved in his disputes.'

Key Clients

Hamad Aldrees &Partners Holding Co. for Industry and Mining

University of London

Nottingham Trent University

University of Sheffield

Work highlights

  • Acted for Hamad Aldrees & Partners Holding Company for Industry and Mining in a multi-million pound claim against an English company relating to the supply of mineral separating units to process silica sand in Saudi Arabia for use in the glass industry.
  • Advised the University of London on strategic and reputational matters relating to the defense of a claim brought in the US by a student alleging breach of contract.
  • Defended Nottingham Trent University in a long running Equality Act and breach of contract claim brought by a former student who suffers from a number of mental and physical disabilities.
  • Advising the University of Sheffield in a claim before the Court of Appeal challenging the university's decision to remove a student from a social work course following the students homophobic comments made on social media.

Squire Patton Boggs' litigation and international dispute resolution team has experience handling a range of contentious matters at local, regional, national and international levels with expertise across a variety of sectors including the manufacturing, education, technology, retail, IT, property development and logistics industries. The group is led by Jason Blakey, who joined from DWF and is frequently instructed on a range of contractual and tortious disputes; other noteworthy individuals include Simon Lucas, who specialises in export controls and international trade compliance, and Simon Miller, who has now taken a consultant role at the firm. Lucci Dammone retired.

Practice head(s):Jason Blakey

Other key lawyers:Simon Lucas; Simon Miller

Key Clients

Quartzelec Limited

Komori UK Limited

Contact (Print and Packaging) Limited/Contact Holdings Limited

Kwik Fit

Optare PLC

Bluestone Leasing Limited

Ikonic Technology Limited

Clipper Logistics PLC

Vodafone Limited

Contis Group Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for Quartzelec in a £2m claim against Weir Engineering Services relating to electrical engineering work done at geothermal power plants in the Philippines.
  • Acted for Contact Holdings in a £1.2m claim against its insurer, Travelers, for an indemnity following the failure of a printing press at its site in Stockport.
  • Defending Contact (Print and Packaging) against allegations brought by Glossop Cartons and Print for breach of warranty, misrepresentations and breach of contract relating to an asset purchase agreement entered into by the parties.

The commercial litigation team at Clarion has an impressive client roster and a breadth of experience in domestic and international disputes, with growing expertise in the technology, outsourcing and food sectors. Practice head and 'heavyweight litigator' Simon Young has 'a strong reputation in the Leeds market' and attracts praise for 'his diligence and judgement'; other key names to note include Dominic Higham, particularly for IT and outsourcing disputes, experienced litigator and mediator David Williams, and senior associate Kayleigh Fantoni, whose experience spans IT software agreement disputes and acting for financial services businesses in guarantee claims.

Practice head(s):Simon Young

Other key lawyers:Dominic Higham; David Williams; Kayleigh Fantoni


'The litigation team at Clarion is well coordinated, efficient and responsive.'

'The personable and hardworking commercial litigation team at Clarion is always quick to respond and very professional at all times.'

'Clarion's litigation experience is hard to beat, it is one of the best for value for money.'

'Clarion's litigation team punches above its weight.'

'Simon Young is an excellent and highly experienced litigator, who is clearly tactically very astute at directing complex and high-value cases.

'Simon Young performs with the confidence that comes from being an experienced and top-notch litigator.'

Key Clients

Silverstone Circuits Ltd

Kingspan Insulation Plc

Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Foundation Trust



Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies UK Limited

Communisis plc


LNT Group Ltd



Best Western Hotels Group

Gulf Gas & Power

Impact Oil & Gas Limited

The Shard

Caddick Group plc

Wilton UK Ltd

Bayford & Co Ltd

Work highlights

  • Acted for Silverstone Circuits in high-value contract disputes.
  • Represented the Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Foundation Trust in its £8m claims regarding system implementation and service and support issues arising out of the Trust’s five-year healthcare IT contract with Atos.
  • Represented Wilton UK and others in £50m derivative, contract and professional negligence claims.
  • Acting for four clients in a fraudulent misrepresentation claim against a large plc in the pharmaceuticals sector.
  • Acting for Ten Acres Holdings in declarations to challenge the validity of certain security documents.

Schofield Sweeney's team includes individuals based across Yorkshire in the firm's Bradford and Leeds offices. It is frequently instructed on a range of complex litigation in the region and nationally; recently the group has been particular busy handling shareholder and other corporate disputes. Bradford-based James Staton, who has significant experience in a range of High Court and Commercial Court litigation as well as mediation, heads up the team, which includes Leo Jones-Rowe in Leeds, who has particular experience handling tax disputes.  Alistair Kennedy and Mathew Fidler left the practice and set up new firm Tyr Law.

Practice head(s):James Staton

Other key lawyers:Leo Jones-Rowe


'Schofield Sweeney's litigation team is very engaging, keeps the client informed and is willing to challenge clients' perceptions in a positive way.'

'Richard Stockdale does a very good job.'

'Leo Jones-Rowe is a good lawyer.'

Key Clients

GMI Construction Group Plc

Greenhous Group Limited

A Shade Greener

IHDL Group

DS7 Limited

Work highlights

  • Defended three former company directors in a £39m claim brought by a former shareholder.
  • Acted for a car finance company in a £30m shareholder dispute under the Companies Act 2006.
  • Represented a former director of a large umbrella employment company relating to personal liability notices issued by HMRC following the company’s insolvency and the related commercial claims against their former advisers.
  • Acted for Romac Logistics in defending an application for interim relief and an underlying claim for misuse of confidential information made by Moran Logistics.
  • Acted for an individual in a farming partnership dispute relating to £7m of assets.

3volution Limited has experience across a range of corporate, contractual and tortuous disputes. Practice head Tim Stone has particular expertise in pensions disputes, while recently promoted partner Samantha Wragg counts financial services, professional negligence, defamation and contentious trust and probate disputes among her areas of focus. IP litigator Sara Ludlam is another name to note.

Practice head(s):Tim Stone

Other key lawyers:Sara Ludlam; Samantha Wragg


'Tim Stone is an intelligent lawyer, with a strong reputation for pensions disputes in particular.'

Key Clients

FP Processing Limited

Print Express

Goldnch Entertainment Limited

TSA Service Limited

Evolution Technical Services Limited

Yesterday and Today

Fresh Pastures CIC

Nexus Vehicle Management Limited

Quirky Ales Limited

CGF Marketing Limited

Cape Industrial Services Limited

Work highlights

  • Defending Omega Atlantic in a claim brought by Hawksmoor Property Services, Comino Investments and Lambert Smith Hampton Group relating to monies owed for the provision of professional services.
  • Acted for Print Express Partnership in a contractual dispute with Asendia UK regarding postal services provided throughout 2015.
  • Acting for Haandle in allegations of patent infringement brought by a German-based patent owner and the English licensee.
  • Representing an individual in claims brought against his former independent financial advisors.

Freeths LLP handles a range of issues including international dispute resolution and arbitration, trusts, estates and private litigation, pensions matters, competition litigation and insurance sector claims. James Hartley, who has expertise in litigation funding, heads the team, which includes Lindsey Clegg, who is frequently instructed in cross-border commercial disputes, and legal director Stephen Lewis, who has particular expertise in insurance litigation. The team benefits from the addition of senior associate Laura Short, a trusts and estates dispute specialist, who joined from Jones Myers LLP.

Practice head(s):James Hartley

Other key lawyers:Lindsey Clegg; Stephen Lewis; Laura Short


'Freeths LLP's dispute resolution team has been making an impact on the Leeds legal market and is developing a reputation for handling some good work.'

'The individuals at Freeths are clearly experts in their field.'

'Freeths LLP's dispute resolution practice provides customers the best answer for the best value for money, with no hint of complacency.'

'The litigation team at Freeths LLP  is very personable, easy to work and communicate with, and combines good team spirit with a competent professional approach to issues.'

'Freeths LLP has excellent technical skills and awareness of the law, combined with a practical approach to cases and a very pragmatic approach to solving the problem at hand and finding the solution for the client.'

'Senior associate Laura Short is very on the ball, technically excellent and a great advocate to have fighting your corner.'

Key Clients

Peerless Europe

North Tyneside Council

Onur Air T.S.

Work highlights

  • Acting for over 550 sub-postmasters, against Post Office regarding alleged faults in the Post Office’s national computer system, Horizon.
  • Represented Onur Air in its defence of Commercial Court proceedings arising out of the catastrophic failure of an aircraft engine leased to it by a major aviation lessor.
  • Advised a client in a claim for breach of trust and account of profits arising out of the wrongful division of business revenues and the misappropriation of a portfolio of properties.
  • Successfully resolved a long-running family partnership and trust dispute.
  • Representing a Brazilian subsidiary of a UK manufacturer in an £11m dispute arising out of the manufacture and distribution of heavy plant for the oil and gas industry.

Gateley Plc is instructed to advise clients on the avoidance, management and resolution of a range of contentious matters. It has particular expertise in handling disputes relating to residential developments, procurements and the higher education, retail, energy and engineering sectors. Practice head Gerard Khoshnaw and Andrew Johnson are active in the team's sector specialisms; Simon Ingham has particular expertise in construction disputes and counts several large housebuilders as clients, and Gavin Winter focuses on property litigation.

Practice head(s):Gerard Khoshnaw

Other key lawyers:Andrew Johnson; Simon Ingham; Gavin Winter


'The commercial litigation team at Gateley Plc is very responsive, commercial and pragmatic.'

'Andrew Johnson's provides commercially-oriented and pragmatic advice.'

Key Clients

Royal London Insurance

Marshalls Plc

Persimmon Plc

Taylor Wimpey Plc

Bellway Plc

Crest Nicholson Plc

Miller Homes Limited

Birmingham City University

FCC Environment UK Limited

Bovis Homes Limited

Leeds Playhouse

J LIvesey Group

Harron Homes

Work highlights

  • Representing a FTSE 250 construction company in pursuing a claim for final payment due pursuant to the terms of an SPA.
  • Defending Persimmon in a £3.3m claim brought by 69 residents who purchased apartments on Swansea Dock.
  • Acted for FCC Environment UK in a procurement challenge against Wychavon Borough Council relating to a waste contract, which FCC was the incumbent supplier but had been unsuccessful in its tender.
  • Acting for a wealthy farming family in a dispute with a developer regarding the terms of an overage agreement regarding a 300 acre development site in the North East.
  • Acting for Bovis Homes in a claim for damages and injunctive relief for nuisance against an occupier of a neighbouring site.

With Gordons LLP's sector specialisms firmly rooted in retail and food, the dispute resolution team frequently acts for these clients in a range of contentious matters. The group also has particular experience in the manufacturing, chemicals and banking and real estate sectors. Stephen McVey focuses on retail, as well as IP and media litigation. Bradford-based Graeme Davy, (who splits his time between debt recovery, commercial litigation and property disputes) and Mark Jones (who acts for a large number of food businesses in supply chain-related disputes) are other key names to note.

Practice head(s):Stephen McVey

Other key lawyers:Graeme Davy; Mark Jones

Key Clients


Wren Kitchens

Glen Dimplex

Morphy Richards

Freemans plc and Grattons Plc

Moss Bros. Group Plc

Nisa Retail Limited

Original Factory Shop Limited

Pavers Limited


Molson Coors Brewing Company (UK) Ltd

Safestyle UK

Work highlights

  • Acted for Mezzino in a dispute with the landlord of large-scale student accommodation relating to the termination of property management agreements.
  • Acted for a liquidator in pursuing claims for recovery of payments made by a former law firm, which is now in liquidation.

Irwin Mitchell handles a range of commercial, corporate and contractual litigation. IP litigator Alex Newman heads the team, which includes James Laycock, who has particular expertise in contentious wills, trusts and estates; and senior associate Richard Payne, who has experience in breach of warranty, breach of fiduciary duty and breach of restrictive covenant disputes. The group's other specialisms include handling franchising disputes and construction sector claims.

Practice head(s):Alex Newman

Other key lawyers:James Laycock; Emma Yates; Richard Payne


'James Laycock is a good lawyer and is well-respected in Leeds.'

'Irwin Mitchell has an excellent ability to look at the problems from all angles.'

'Emma Yates is a tenacious solution finder.'

Key Clients

Christeyns UK Limited

Transcal Holdings Limited

Pirtek (UK) Limited


Rullion Group

Taskmaster Resources Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for Christeyns UK in a claim for breach of fiduciary duty and conspiracy to injure against the former managing director and former sales director of Alex Reid (a subsidary of the client) and two other individuals.

The disputes team at Langleys Solicitors LLP is frequently instructed on commercial contract disputes between business entities as well as matters involving European Institutions, shareholders and directors disputes and IP litigation. The group also frequently assists various departments of the European Commission with several matters including the enforcement of community judgments in the UK courts. 'Very sound and articulate commercial lawyer' James Henson leverages his broad commercial disputes experience in heading up the team.

Practice head(s):James Henson

Other key lawyers:Elizabeth Turner


'The cohesive and tight-knit team at Langleys Solicitors LLP knows its areas of law well.'

'James Henson is able to cut to the essence of a dispute quickly and explain the process well to his clients.'

'James Henson is intelligent and easy-going; a combination that serves him well with his client base.'

Key Clients

European Commission

Electricity North West Limited

Software Box Limited

Helmsley Securities Limited/ Helmsley Group Limited

W Boyes & Co Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for a builders merchants in a tripartite dispute over the quality of manufactured goods.
  • Acted for a media sector client in a dispute relating to  allegations of wrongful termination of contract, inducing breach of contract and breach of copyright.
  • Represented an IT sector client  in a breach of warranty claim arising out of a share sale and purchase agreement.
  • Defending a manufacturer in allegations of patent infringement.
  • Acted for a transport sector client in a breach of contract claim.

The disputes team at LCF Law includes individuals based in Leeds and Bradford and is frequently instructed by well-known national and international companies on a range of contentious matters. Practice head Charles Abraham is noted particularly for his financial services expertise and experience in preparing applications for injunctive relief. Associate Roger Raper has acted for clients in a range of commercial litigation including  insolvency and corporate recovery matters.

Practice head(s):Charles Abraham

Other key lawyers:Roger Raper

Key Clients



Anglian Water Limited

PTSG (Premier Technical Services Group)

VP Plc.

Brandon Tool Hire Limited

MKM Building Supplies Limited

Emerson Group (USA based)

G S F Limited

Jeremy Benn Associates Limited

Exapol Limited

Haztec Limited

J P D Distribution Limited

IXL (Malta) Limited

Mitie Pest Control (MPCL) Limited

Work highlights

  • Defended the Emerson Group against substantial claims arising from energy supplies to several group companies.
  • Acting for a care homes group in a multi-million pound claim concerning break costs against a bank.
  • Represented Stage Coach Southwestern Trains in several matters including legal actions against trespassers at train stations.
  • Acting for an organisation providing services to public authorities in a procurement claim against a drainage board relating to breach of procurement regulations.

Lupton Fawcett acts for a breadth of commercial clients as well as universities, landed estates, global ecclesiastical entities, property-holding businesses and investors. Jonathan Cripwell, who leads the team in York, has a niche specialism in civil fraud cases. Howard Rutter heads up the contentious probate practice and also has expertise in dealing with professional partnership matters.

Practice head(s):Jonathan Cripwell

Other key lawyers:Howard Rutter


'The team at Lupton Fawcett is extremely knowledgeable, approachable and technically excellent.'

'The dispute management team at Lupton Fawcett really cares about getting the best results for its clients and is a delight to work with.'

'Lupton Fawcett is particularly strong in litigation and, while it is a large firm, it deals with clients on a personal basis.'

'Associate Daniel Edwards' legal knowledge is encyclopaedic, but he is also very commercially astute. He's a real star.'

'Howard Rutter has unrivalled experience in dealing with solicitors partnership disputes.'

Key Clients



Seabrook Crisps


Redhall Group Plc

Hand Picked Hotels

Urbanest Uk

Chaucer Foods Limited

Crossroads Truck & Bus Company

Victoria Hall Management

Work highlights

  • Acted for an individual in successfully defending an application to rectify a legal charge granted in favour of the firm's client.
  • Acted for an individual in a partnership dispute.
  • Acting for a multi-national company in multiple arbitrations arising from a construction project in the food manufacturing sector.
  • Representing a food manufacturing client in a multi-million pound claim for loss of profits arising from a contract with a large supermarket.
  • Acted for two former directors of a leisure and tourism sector company that had recently been sold in a breach of warranty claim brought by the purchasers.

Harrogate-based firm McCormicks is recognised for its representation of sports sector clients, which includes participants and regulators. The team has experience handling a range of contentious matters including contractual claims, construction disputes, debt recovery issues, professional negligence matters and contentious probate work. Beyond the sports sector, the group is growing its digital sector expertise with several new client wins. Philip Edmondson leads the department alongside senior partner Peter McCormick.

Practice head(s):Philip Edmondson; Peter McCormick


'McCormicks provides excellent advice and the outcome is delivered by consummate professionals.'

Key Clients

The Premier League

Rudding Park Ltd

Leeds United Football Club

GMI Construction Group PLC

Oracle Finance Limited

DFS Furniture Company Limited

Solicitors Indemnity Fund Limited/Legal and Professional Insurance

The Isthmian League (Bostik League)

Lunchbox Theatrical Productions Limited

InTechnology PLC

The Estate of the late John Strutt and associated Trusts

Work highlights

  • Defending the Premier League in an FA Rule K Arbitration brought by Leyton Orient regarding the Olympic Stadium.
  • Acted for the Premier League in a multi-million pound dilapidations dispute relating to its former headquarters.
  • Acting for the Premier League in a competition law action brought by Doyen Sports via the EU Commission and in multiple other jurisdictions.
  • Representing the Premier League in a dispute with the FA regarding potential reforms to home grown player rules.
  • Advising on the liquidation of a firm of solicitors.

Shulmans LLP provides 'clear and concise advice' on a range of contentious matters covering contentious trusts and estates, technology disputes, IP matters, professional indemnity work and consumer credit claims. The team counts high-net-worth individuals and families as well as corporates among its client base. Richard Wadkin, who specialises in high-value business and family disputes, injunctions and road transport work, heads up the practice, which includes Mark Lumley (who acts predominantly for technology businesses) and environmental and regulatory specialist Lyn Dario.

Practice head(s):Richard Wadkin

Other key lawyers:Mark Lumley; Lyn Dario


'Shulmans LLP has an extremely strong dispute resolution team, which is committed to its clients and securing the best outcome.'

'Shulmans LLP offers a careful and well-balanced approach to understanding all the issues surrounding litigation.'

'Shulmans LLP is a highly professional firm that treats every case individually and gives excellent advice and detailed responses, all at reasonable costs.'

'Associate Eleanor Stenson has a very calm and careful manner when advising and is very good at minimising the pressures associated with litigation.'

'Solicitor Clare Benger has passion and dedication to each matter.'

'Commercially astute solicitor Sophie Brackenbury is diligent and committed with exceptional client care.'

Key Clients

MHH Contracting Limited/Martin Hague

City Electrical Factors Limited

Tony Armitage

Work highlights

  • Acting for MHH Contracting in a multi-million pound claim alleging breaches of fiduciary duties.
  • Acted for City Electrical Factors in a claim for the recovery of a debt under various personal guarantees.
  • Represented a manufacturing sector client in a claim for the recovery of money relating to a disputed unpaid invoice.
  • Acting for the former director of Montpelier Business Reorganisation in claims worth £1m made against him and other shareholders for the repayment of deferred consideration and claims for other damages and injunctive relief triggered by alleged breaches of various agreements.
  • Advised a private client in a contentious probate matter involving two competing wills.

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP regularly handles contentious matters in the public sector, financial sector and chemical and manufacturing industries. It has a client roster including a mix of regional and national businesses and organisations and leverages its network to handle instructions with cross-border elements. Practice head Nick Mason has broad expertise, with particular experience in the public sector.

Practice head(s):Nick Mason

Other key lawyers:Tom Graham


'Womble Bond Dickinson fields a team of excellent commercial litigators, who are capable of dealing with a wide range of commercial disputes equally well.'

'Nick Mason's well-researched approach to getting to know his clients provides a great foundation for a working relationship. His advice and approach to problems are informative and practical. Associate Tom Graham is also worthy of a special mention for his able and responsive approach.'

'Tom Graham is hardworking, dedicated and excellent with clients. Nick Mason has his finger on the pulse and gives good, strategic advice.'

Key Clients

NHS Digital

David Brown Gear Systems Limited

Anpario plc

Roballo Engineering Company Limited

City of York Council

Post Office

Sanderson Weatherall LLP

The dispute resolution practice at Blacks Solicitors LLP acts in a variety of contentious commercial and civil matters. Luke Patel has a broad client base, which includes owner-managed businesses, charities and international organisations. Darren Morgan has particular experience handling shareholder and partnership disputes, breach of commercial contract claims, professional negligence claims  and tax-related litigation.

Practice head(s):Luke Patel

Other key lawyers:Darren Morgan


'The entire team at Blacks is very friendly, efficient and robust. The practice seems to really care about its clients.'

'Blacks has transformed itself from a modest Leeds player to a single office with local and national capability.'

'Blacks has a clear strategy and vision for the future. Its client care is impressive and partner led, and communication with Blacks is first class both with counsel and clients. It adheres to timelines and responds to requests for information immediately. Its service standards are impressive.'

'Luke Patel has a loyal client base and for good reason. He is personable, knowledgeable, persistent and very good at his job.'

'Luke Patel is a first-rate litigator. He is strategic and enthusiastic and works very well with his team to get the best out of them. Luke shows real commitment to the client and works very hard to achieve favourable outcomes. He clearly thrives on the cut and thrust of commercial litigation.'

The corporate and commercial litigation team at DAC Beachcroft LLP handles dispute resolution as well as providing risk management advice to its clients, which are predominantly in the healthcare and local authority sectors. Duncan Greenwood heads the practice from Leeds and frequently works alongside the firm's other offices in the North.

Practice head(s):Duncan Greenwood

Key Clients

Sheffield Children's Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Lynne Young Associates Limited

Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Fullers Foods International plc

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Ascribe Limited (part of Emis Group PLC)

Chesterfield Royal NHS Foundation Trust

Doncaster and Bassetlaw Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Harrowells Solicitors' client roster spans large corporates to high-net-worth individuals particularly in the agricultural, horse racing and related business sectors. Simon Black is instructed on a range of commercial and civil litigation including contractual and company, shareholder and partnership disputes, while Richard Hugill handles a range of litigation and mediation. Paul Burkinshaw, who is based in the firm's Thirsk office, focuses on agricultural litigation.

Practice head(s):Simon Black

Other key lawyers:Richard Hugill; Paul Burkinshaw

Work highlights

  • Acted for leading insolvency practitioners in claims arising from corporate insolvencies.

Boutique firm Metis Law Limited acts in a range of contentious matters including contractual disputes and shareholder litigation. Founder and practice head Rajat Sharma has significant experience in the  industrial, commercial, property and media sectors.

Practice head(s):Rajat Sharma

Key Clients

Karras Food Group

Jungle Creations

Northern Powerhouse Developments


Whyte Group

Grosvenor Chemicals

Interparcel Group

Chelsea Food and Wine Group

Yoo Group

Samara Group

Work highlights

  • Acted for Gaia Ventures in a £1.9m breach of contract claim relating to the development of Milton Keynes Ice Rink.
  • Successfully represented C21 London Estates in the Court of Appeal on liability issues in a £1m claim for breach of contract against the holders of the Century 21 franchise.
  • Acted for Yoo Group in a construction dispute against Aqua Boracay relating to the construction of a £150m hotel island resort complex.

Ramsdens has the ability to assist clients with a range of civil and commercial litigation, and is active in professional services litigation and agriculture disputes. Steven Singh heads up the group which includes Paul Booth, who has experience in construction and engineering work, sale of goods, IP and company and commercial disputes, and Jeremy Cook, who has particular expertise in the manufacturing, environmental, health and food sectors. Nick Armitage is a key name for property litigation.

Practice head(s):Steven Singh

Other key lawyers:Jeremy Cook; Paul Booth; Nick Armitage

Work highlights

  • Acted for Daniel Johns Manchester in an application for the judicial review of a decision by the local authority not to sell the freehold of part of a development site.

Harrogate-based firm Raworths is regularly instructed by high-growth privately owned businesses and entrepreneurs on a range of commercial litigation. Matthew Hill, who has particular expertise in handling complex agricultural and rural disputes in the region, heads up the practice, which includes experienced commercial and civil litigator Jonathan Mortimer.

Practice head(s):Matthew Hill

Other key lawyers:Jonathan Mortimer;


'Raworths is definitely the long-standing leader in the Harrogate market; it combines the friendliness of a small(ish) firm with the expertise associated with a larger firm, but without the extortionate prices often associated with Leeds firms.'

'Raworths is a highly regarded law firm in Harrogate. It combine a quality of service and expertise to be expected in larger commercial centres with a sensitivity to what is important to its local clients.'

'Raworths has a grounded practice which is approachable and has the ability to work with a diverse range of clients.'

Key Clients

The Trustees of the Rockspring Hanover Property Unit Trust

Dishang Cherry Limited

Dishang Imports Limited

Dishang Exports Limited

The Royal Antediluvian Order of the Buffaloes

Financiere Mademoiselle Desserts

Environmental Technologies Limited

Neoceuticals Limited

Cars on Demand Limited

Adler & Allan Limited

Technology Sciences (Europe) Limited

Zeal Media Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for Financiere Mademoiselle Desserts in a £30m fraudulent misrepresentation claim brought against the majority of the sellers of Ministry of Cake, which the claimant had recently acquired.
  • Defended Technology Sciences (Europe)  in a high-value and technically complex breach of contract claim.
  • Assisted a leading businessman whose assets of £50M were at risk as a result of a complex trust arrangement.
  • Acted for Dishang in a complex and high-value commercial dispute with its former agent.
  • Acting for a leading pharmaceuticals company in a complex distributor dispute.

The litigation services department at Shoosmiths LLP handles a range of contentious corporate and commercial matters and has particular experience in shareholder and warranty disputes. The group's client rosters spans numerous sectors including the retail, healthcare and manufacturing industries. Practice head Matthew Howarth has broad expertise and the ability to act in complex and cross-border disputes.

Practice head(s):Matthew Howarth

Other key lawyers:Emma Lowe

Key Clients

Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc

Xyfil Limited

Tefen Global Management Consulting Limited

Alliance Healthcare

Curotec Team Limited

Healthcare Environmental Services Ltd

Core Civils Ltd

Work highlights

  • Acted for Xyfil in an claim relating to the alleged misuse of confidential information by a former employee and his new employer regarding the creation and manufacture of vaping liquids for e-cigarettes.
  • Representing Curotec Team in a claim of malicious falsehood relating to the design and manufacture of vibration monitoring equipment for powered tools.
  • Advised an Austrian and US-based oilfield equipment manufacturer and distributor and its UK subsidiary in an investigation into the potentially fraudulent behaviour of a UK-based director.
  • Representing Tefen Global Management Consulting in a claim for breaches of an international joint venture arrangement with subsidiary companies in Israel, Italy and England and Scotland.
  • Advising Healthcare Environmental Services on possible actions as a result of 27 NHS Trusts exercising their step-in rights and subsequently terminating their contracts.

Commercial litigation: Sheffield, South Yorkshire

Index of tables

  1. Commercial litigation: Sheffield, South Yorkshire
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next Generation Partners
  4. Rising stars

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Rising stars

  1. 1

The commercial litigation team at CMS is frequently instructed in a range of commercial, contract and corporate disputes and is developing a particular niche in the healthcare, public procurement and technology sectors. Names to note include 'ingenious innovator' George Lubega, who heads up the team and has a broad practice assisting public and private sector clients, and senior associate Richard Wilson, who has particular experience acting for international clients in overseas matters and excels in the financial services, sport and infrastructure sectors.

Practice head(s):George Lubega

Other key lawyers:Richard Wilson


'George Lubega acts as a seamless extension of client's in-house teams and is genuinely driven to understand the client's objectives.'

'George Lubega demonstrates the candour to manage client expectations and displays a brilliance in forward planning and strategy.'

'George Lubega is a trusted adviser to clients; he is always available and has the ability to reach practical solutions in technically complex matters.'

Key Clients

Cantel UK Limited

Community Resourcing Ltd

Consort Medical Plc

Holland & Barrett

Industrial Chemicals Group Limited

New Balance Athletic Shoes (UK) Limited

Qatar Airways

Verity Trustees Limited (trading as TPT Retirement Solutions)

Wildlife Group Limited

Writtle Holdings Limited

Work highlights

  • Represented Consort Medical in a cross-border dispute over the agreement for the development and manufacture of a medical device.
  • Acted for Community Resourcing in a dispute relating to the lawfulness of a procurement process for HR services.
  • Instructed by Qatar Airways in a number of passenger disputes, including complex compensation claims and general contractual disputes.
  • Defended New Balance Athletic Shoes in a claim brought by the management companies of footballer Marouane Fellaini relating to a product endorsement contract.
  • Acted for Wildlife Group in a contractual dispute with an information technology company, which involved issues of unjust enrichment, damages and the delivery up of property.

DLA Piper UK LLP assists its impressive client roster, which spans a broad range of public and private sector clients across the IT, engineering, manufacturing and transport sectors, with a range corporate, commercial and contractual disputes. Practice head Richard Norman is highlighted for his expertise in handling IT, outsourcing and telecoms disputes, while senior associate Barney Connell has particular experience advising the financial services sector. Other names to note included senior associates Harriet Farrant, James Watson and David Molyneux for construction industry, technology sector and pensions disputes respectively.

Practice head(s):Richard Norman

Other key lawyers:Barney Connell; Harriet Farrant; James Watson; David Molyneux


'The dispute resolution practice at DLA Piper UK LLP provides clear, practical and honest advice and deals with matters as economically as possible, taking into account the long term interests of the client.'

'The commercial litigation team at DLA Piper UK LLP has the ability to understand the central issues and to recommend the most appropriate means of dealing with them as quickly as possible.'

Key Clients



Boots plc


Coal Authority

Merlin Entertainments

Tata Communications





Colt Technology

Work highlights

  • Acted for Boots in a claim for significant historic overcharging for water management services provided by Severn Trent Water at Boots' Beeston site.
  • Defended The Coal Authority in a subsidence claim relating to Wentworth Woodhouse.

Freeths LLP handles a variety of contentious matters ranging from shareholder and partnership disputes to public procurement challenges, contractual claims, insolvency matters and reputation management work. James Hartley, who splits his time between the Leeds and Sheffield offices, heads up the team alongside the 'super smart' James Berry, who attracts praise for being 'very personable and quick on the uptake' and focuses on the manufacturing, construction and technology sectors. Senior associate Mark Gudgeon acts for clients in a range of commercial disputes including public procurement challenges.

Practice head(s):James Hartley; James Berry

Other key lawyers:Mark Gudgeon; Ciaran Dearden


'Freeths LLP commercial litigation team provides a very professional and pleasant approach to clients.'

'Freeths LLP is an excellent choice for anyone (claimant or defendant) who requires advice or representation in commercial disputes, whether in Yorkshire or indeed nationally.'

'Freeths LLP's dispute resolution team is very experienced, competent, professional and good value.'

'Freeths LLP's provides partner-led client engagement with a broad range of specialist areas and an effective network of wider business contacts.'

'Freeths LLP litigation team provides clear advice, unwavering support, genuine interest in the client's business, unprompted updates and engagement.'

'James Hartley has a great reputation in Yorkshire for commercial litigation.'

'James Berry is quick to respond and is able to confidently and concisely provide sound advice that is understandable and clear to a lay person.'

'James Berry is absolutely first rate — he is highly intelligent, strong analytically and strategically, extremely hardworking and excellent with clients.'

'James Berry is the man you want on your side in commercial litigation; he is the complete package.'

'Associate Ciaran Dearden is one to watch as he is smart, diligent and dedicated to the client's interests.'

Key Clients

Global Technologies Racing Limited

MGS Technical Plastics Limited

Paragon Quality Foods Limited

Additive Manufacturing Technologies Limited

Advanced Alloy Services Limited

Solpro Manufacturing Limited

C Spencer Limited

EMP Technologies Limited

EMC Solihull MBC


Healthcare Business Solutions (UK) Limited

FISC Limited

Engie Fabricom UK Limited

Zoll Medical UK Limited

EMC Melton Borough Council

Rafico Engineering Ltd

Work highlights

  • Acted for Global Technologies Racing in a dispute relating to the manufacturing of hydro-foils for use in the round the world yacht race, The Vendee Globe.
  • Represented Jacobs in a case brought by Marston challenging the public procurement process taken by The Ministry of Justice in awarding five regional contracts for national enforcement and debt collection services, two of which had been awarded to Jacobs.
  • Acted for a metropolitan borough authority in a public procurement challenge brought by a prominent waste provider.
  • Advised a metropolitan borough authority in human rights and personal injury claims brought by two minors relating to the authority's alleged failure to place them into care early enough to avoid psychological harm.

Irwin Mitchell's team handles a range of commercial, contractual and corporate disputes including shareholder and derivative claims and restrictive covenant litigation. The group counts retail, professional services, insurance, IT and manufacturing companies as well as high-net-worth individuals among its client base. Steven Beahan heads up the team and has particular experience in insurance sector disputes, while Dorrien Peters focuses on IT, manufacturing, engineering and construction disputes.

Practice head(s):Steven Beahan

Other key lawyers:Dorrien Peters


'Dorrien Peters has extensive experience of heavy litigation and shows great coolness of thought under pressure, good judgment and excellent strategic analysis.'

'Dorrien Peters  is a quality lawyer.'

Key Clients

Westfield Health

Arc Legal Assistance Ltd


Natural Instinct Limited

Aviva PLC


Laver Leisure

Janspeed Technologies Limited

Pegler Yorkshire

National Grid

Work highlights

  • Represented an offshore investment fund in an expert determination worth over £2m.
  • Acted for a training provider in a complex claim involving allegations of fraud with a value of over £450,000.

Keebles has notable experience handling a range of contentious matters, with particular expertise in the manufacturing, creative and digital industries and healthcare waste management sectors. Michael Peacock heads up the team, which includes Giles Searby, whose experience includes handling contentious IP and international trade issues; property litigator Andrew McKenzie Smith and Doncaster-based Sarah Burton, who is frequently instructed in disputes with a cross-border element.

Practice head(s):Michael Peacock

Other key lawyers:Giles Searby; Andrew McKenzie Smith; Sarah Burton


'Keebles provides an excellent commercial litigation and dispute resolution service, combining a high level of legal expertise and efficiency with a practical and business like approach to dispute resolution which fulfils the commercial needs of its clients. It is a leading firm in Sheffield.'

'All of the solicitors at Keebles are thoroughly professional and effective lawyers and also a pleasure to work with.'

'Andrew McKenzie Smith in particular is efficient, diligent and always delivers on time.'

Key Clients

Sharpsmart Ltd

Franke UK Ltd

Riverside Park Ltd

Electrosteel Castings Ltd

City Estates Ltd

Independent Forgings & Alloys

Palram Group

Chesterfield FC

Motorway Direct plc

Purex International Ltd

Delicious Alchemy Ltd

Togel Construction Ltd

Work highlights

  • Represented Sharpsmart in a claim against Healthcare Environmental Services for sums payable for services rendered.

Wake Smith Solicitors Limited handles a range of contentious matters spanning contractual disputes, tort and professional negligence claims and property litigation. Nick Lambert, who focuses on handling complex contractual disputes, heads up the team, which includes IP litigation expert Mark Serby, and directors Holly Dobson and Elizabeth Shaw, who specialise in inquests and data protection, and property litigation respectively.

Practice head(s):Nick Lambert

Other key lawyers:Mark Serby; Holly Dobson; Elizabeth Shaw


'Wake Smith Solicitors Limited's dispute resolution team is very professional and provides excellent advice.'

'Nick Lambert is very pragmatic and deals with matters extremely effectively and efficiently.'

The commercial litigation team at Bell & Buxton is instructed by a combination of private clients and SMEs on a range of contentious matters from property disputes to passing off claims and professional negligence matters. Practice head Emma Digby has broad experience in contentious matters relating to employment, property and contractual issues.

Practice head(s):Emma Digby

Work highlights

  • Advised a professional executor on forfeiture and commercial debt recovery matters relating to a substantial estate.
  • Acted for a client in a passing off claim against a competitor.
  • Defended a substantial dilapidations claim made following the departure of commercial premises.
  • Acting for a client in the property sector with a professional negligence claim brought against the managing agent of several of the client's properties.
  • Acted for an engineering company in a threatened passing off action.

Lupton Fawcett is instructed by private clients and companies in the manufacturing, trading, property and educational sectors. Simon Lockley handles a range of litigation spanning shareholder and partnership claims, civil fraud and contractual disputes, while Rob Cooke has particular experience in acting for pub landlords in disputes arising from The Pubs Code Regulations 2016.

Practice head(s):Simon Lockley

Other key lawyers:Rob Cooke


'The dispute resolution team at Lupton Fawcett is on the ball, positive and ready to come up with good solutions to all issues.'

Key Clients

Seabrook Crisps




TNT Fireworks

Yorkshire Cancer Research

Hand Picked Hotels

Chaucer Foods Limited

York Mailing Group Limited

Survey Roofing

Work highlights

  • Acting for a private individual looking to recover around £750,000 that has been misappropriated by a limited company.
  • Defending the sole director of a company in a £2.6m claim for employment benefit trusts.
  • Successfully represented a client in a claim against a party wall surveyor for a seven-figure sum of damages.
  • Defending a client in a complex contractual claim, and acting for the same client in a counter claim.
  • Successfully acted for a property developer in obtaining an injunction for a client, enabling a large development of residential houses to proceed.

Taylor & Emmet LLP is instructed by a range of private clients and corporates and has notable expertise in the automotive, retail and manufacturing industries. Paul Smith, who has a breadth of expertise in a range of commercial disputes, arbitrations and adjudications, leads the practice, which includes associate Adam Hollis, who has particular experience in handling residential landlord and tenant matters and insolvency disputes.

Practice head(s):Paul Smith

Other key lawyers:Adam Hollis

Key Clients

Televideo Limited

Greenhill Air Conditioning Limited

Dealer Management Systems Limited

Carrs of Sheffield (Manufacturing) Limited

Gemini Computer Systems Limited

Work highlights

  • Represented several individuals in disputed multi-party leasehold enfranchisement proceedings.
  • Advising property search companies in a high-value claim against a number of national water and sewerage undertakers.
  • Represented individuals in a multi-party neighbour dispute over an easement.
  • Acted for a director and shareholder, who had been excluded from his business by his co-director and co-shareholders.
  • Acting in an agricultural partnership dispute, with claims by the exiting partner for estoppel against a farm owned by his father, who is also a partner in the business.

Debt recovery

Index of tables

  1. Debt recovery
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next Generation Partners

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1
    • Charise Marsden - Keebles

Debt recovery specialist firm drydensfairfax solicitors has expertise across the full breadth of matters including unsecured and secured recoveries, high-volume litigation, and asset-based, insolvency and defended claims. The high-value insolvency team is jointly led by Philip Holden, who focuses on high-value litigation, and insolvency expert Tim Pope. The group also benefits from the addition of associate John-Paul Murphy, who joined from Cohen Cramer and heads up the unsecured litigation team.

Practice head(s):Philip Holden; Tim Pope

Other key lawyers:Sue Nickson; John-Paul Murphy


'drydensfairfax solicitors has a wide range of capabilities in the field of debt recovery, offering deep experience across all practice areas. The group is exceptionally professional and diligent in client delivery and provides commercial, pragmatic and practical advice.'

'drydensfairfax solicitors has a great range and depth of people across the organisation, and is very flexible to client requirements.'

'Philip Holden is well regarded as an expert in his field.'

Clarion is instructed by a range of corporate clients to handle high-value debt collection and credit control services. Practice head Daniel Carlton has particular expertise in the leisure, construction, manufacturing and property sectors, while corporate insolvency specialist Ryan Millmore is noted for his retail, manufacturing and waste sector specialisms. Associate Dale Fawcett is another name to note.

Practice head(s):Daniel Carlton

Other key lawyers:Ryan Millmore; Dale Fawcett; Dominic Blakely; Kayleigh Fantoni

Key Clients

Shred-It Limited

SRCL Limited

Encon Insulation Limited

Bruntwood Investments PLC

Sanderson Weatherall LLP

Asics UK Limited

Admiral Taverns PLC

Communicorp UK Limited

Work highlights

  • Instructed by Encon Insulation to collect substantial outstanding debts.
  • Assisting SRCL-ERS Medical with debt collection.
  • Acting for Bruntwood Investments on the collection of commercial rents from tenants.
  • Acted for Tunstall Healthcare on the recovery of two aged debts, which had been outstanding for years.
  • Assisted a client with the recovery of £350,000 of debt, where the debts were over 4 years old.

The recoveries team at DWF handles a range of debt collection work, focusing on business to business debts, for its impressive client roster, which includes large corporates, blue-chip companies and local authorities. The team is jointly led by national head of recoveries David Scottow, civil recoveries expert Kevin Feehan and James Perry, who heads up the recoveries technical team and focuses on non-standard cases.

Practice head(s):David Scottow; Kevin Feehan; James Perry

Key Clients

Anglian Water Services Ltd

Fleetcor UK

Sainsburys Supermarkets Ltd

High Court Enforcement Officers Association

Controlaccount PLC

Hirestation Ltd

DX Network Services Limited

Marks And Spencer Plc

Asda Stores Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advising the High Court Enforcement Officers Association on various complaints made against High Court enforcement officers.
  • Assisting Hillsborough Steelstock with the recovery of unpaid invoices, interest and late payments for the supply of 20 tonnes of steel.
  • Acted for Chester Wharfe in a contractual dispute regarding the recovery of recruitment fees, which was eventually settled through negotiation.
  • Representing a large healthcare provider in the recovery of care home fees and defending a clinical negligence counterclaim.
  • Assisting a technology sector client with a £350,000 claim for the recovery of unpaid invoices concerning the supply of Sim cards.

The debt recovery team at Gordons LLP has the capacity to handle a range of business to business debt collection instructions, with particular experience in the manufacturing, retail and food and drink sectors. Graeme Davy, who has experience in a range of complex and defended debt recovery matters, heads up the practice, which includes the Bradford-based Sallyanne Phillips.

Practice head(s):Graeme Davy

Other key lawyers:Sallyanne Phillips


'Gordons has an excellent balance between commerciality and objectivity, and takes a customer-focused approach.'

'The team is approachable and easy to deal with, and speaks in plain English!'

Key Clients

Molson Coors Brewing Company (UK) Limited

Core Communications

Safestyle UK

Work highlights

  • Instructed by Molson Coors Brewing Company as the company's sole debt recovery provider.

The debt recovery team at Keebles handles a range of claims from fast-track matters to contractual disputes and issues involving emergency injunction relief and breaches of restrictive covenants. Rachel Crookes, who has particular experience assisting clients in the manufacturing and engineering sectors, jointly heads up the team with Charise Marsden.

Practice head(s):Rachel Crookes; Charise Marsden


'Keebles provides a proactive service giving practical assistance wherever possible, and it has a strong and helpful team.'

'Keebles' debt collection solution takes a personal approach and always has the clients best interests at heart. Rather than just trying to chase for a fee, it will look at the best opportunities for collection.'

'Keebles offer an exemplary service for a price below the market average.'

Key Clients

Actavo (UK) Ltd

Aggregate Industries UK Ltd

Kettlewell Fuels Ltd

Vink UK Ltd

Brown McLeod Ltd

Eyre & Elliston Ltd

Galaxy Insulation and Dry Lining (Holdings) Ltd

Menzies Distribution Ltd

Sheffield Credit Union

Synseal Extrusions Ltd

Oak Tyres UK Ltd

Work highlights

  • Acted for several clients across multiple sectors on the recovery of outstanding invoices.
  • Assisted a client with the recovery of an over-payment from an ex-employee.
  • Acted for a client in the real estate sector on the recovery of an outstanding deposit.

Lupton Fawcett's team handles a variety of private and contentious corporate matters ranging from advice on terms and conditions and credit control procedures to enforcement matters and claims. Practice head Nigel Whitfield, who splits his time between York and Leeds, has a broad range of experience with particular expertise in insolvency-related work.

Practice head(s):Nigel Whitfield


'Lupton Fawcett's debt recovery team provides a quick, friendly and polite service.'

'The team at Lupton Fawcett is very polite, prompt and informative.'

The commercial business debt recovery team at LCF Law assists its client roster, which ranges from SMEs to large plcs, with a range of claims, from commencement of collection proceedings to the enforcement of judgments and insolvency issues. It has particular experience advising on the recovery of debt arising from contracts in the construction industry. Andrew Langton heads up the team from Bradford.

Practice head(s):Andrew Langton

Key Clients


MKM Building Supplies Limited

Mabey Hire Ltd

Andrew Page 1917 Ltd


NWG Business

Ameuri Ltd

Lyreco UK Ltd

Smiths News Trading Limited

Woodhead Investments

Adler and Allan Ltd

Abacus Express Ltd

JP Distribution Ltd

Work highlights

  • Instructed by Mabey Hire to review and consult on it’s internal risk and collection strategies.

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