Construction: contentious in London

CMS

CMS' infrastructure, construction and energy practice advises on contentious matters for a broad range of clients such as institutional investors,  consultants and contractors, including some of the largest in the UK. The team is co-led by Adrian Bell and Steven Williams. Bell, described as 'a smooth operator', works internationally, with a particular focus in the Middle East. He has acted in arbitrations in relation to infrastructure projects while his domestic practice covers PFI disputes. Williams, who 'commands huge respect', has acted on UK waste to energy disputes as well as being prominent on issues arising out of infrastructure projects. Matthew Taylor acts for funders, developers and owners with a specialism in handling claims relating to extensions of time - he is praised for his 'understanding of the construction sector'Catherine Gelder deals with a range of litigation, adjudication and mediation in relation to international infrastructure projects.

Practice head(s):

Adrian Bell; Steven Williams

Other key lawyers:

Matthew Taylor; Catherine Gelder

Testimonials

‘Adrian Bell is very focused on responsiveness and client service, he is always available and extremely sensible, pragmatic and commercial.’

‘Steven Williams is a really excellent strategic litigator. Unlike many partners who dip in and out, Steven is all over the detail and has a very clear focus on what they key issues are and how to present them.’

‘Matthew Taylor is down to earth, knows the law inside out and is exceptional at dealing with complex issues and putting them into easily understandable terms. Excellent at strategy, really understands the construction sector.’

‘Matt Taylor has good commercial insight and is a deep thinker.’

‘Steve Williams is hugely experienced and commands huge respect.’

‘Adrian Bell is a smooth operator.’

‘CMS has expertise and experience in advising and representing all those involved in projects including investors, employers, contractors, professionals, insurers and reinsurers. The breadth of experience cannot be beaten.’

‘The fact that they set up a team spread in different countries and timezones gave us the flexibility to work around the clock whenever it was needed. When the dispute extended to other jurisdictions, the firm adjusted the team to the new scenario within few days. All this was transparent to us – we only had to deal with the partner managing our case.’

‘Responsive, informative, knowledgeable, supportive.’

The team has genuine strength in depth with excellent partners and some very good associates too.  They are hugely experienced in complex construction disputes and have a large team that can quickly resource big cases and have things turned around very quickly.’

‘Strength in depth. Very commercially minded, focused on long-term strategy.’

‘A first-rate team of highly specialised and skilled lawyers with a good commercial outlook. The partners are closely involved.’

‘Steven Williams manages the most complex and high value disputes with tact and strategic skill. He is able to manage his own team whilst having the authority and skill to build relationships with counterparties and other interested parties. He plans and builds a case strategy and exercises good judgement in matching team members with the delivery of the plan. He has fought and settled some major disputes over many years.’

Key clients

Lendlease Construction

Mace Ltd

Arup

Multiplex

AECOM

Laing O’Rourke

Balfour Beatty

Wates

Lukoil

Mott MacDonald

TAQA

SSE

NG Bailey

Komatsu Mining Corp

National Grid

Viridor

Acciona

Equitix

Neilson Architects

Técnicas Reunidas

Work highlights

  • Represented Equitix ESI CHP (Sheff) Limited in an injunction application and part 8 proceedings in the TCC as part of advice in relation to an ongoing dispute with its O&M contractor.
  • Represent the fifth defendant, Nillsson Architects, in this multi-party TCC dispute relating to alleged defects within the super-high-end residential development, The Lancasters.
  • Represented the claimant, Técnicas Reunidas Saudia for Services and Contracting, on a gas plant being developed in Saudi Arabia by Saudi Aramco. The client wasthe  beneficiary of an on-demand guarantee provided on behalf of a subcontractor by the Korea Development Bank (KDB), which refused to make payment under the bond; the claimant obtained expedited summary judgment in the TCC requiring payment to be made.

Fenwick Elliott LLP

Fenwick Elliott LLP's team, which is praised for providing 'the right mix of commercial and legal advice', focuses on disputes relating to major infrastructure projects both in the UK and internationally. Simon Tolson, who co-leads the team, has decades of experience appearing in the TCC and before international arbitration tribunals. He works in tandem with Tony Francis, who is well-regarded for 'paying great attention to clients' challenges and needs.' He advises clients on PFI disputes as well as high-profile engineering disputes in the road, rail and water sectors. Richard Smellie is an experienced practitioner in international arbitration with expertise in the oil and gas and power sectors.

Practice head(s):

Simon Tolson; Tony Francis

Testimonials

‘A real customer focus. Provides a team that suits the specific needs of the customer’s particular challenge. Offers the right mix of commercial and legal advice.’

‘Tony Francis pays great attention to clients’ particular challenges and needs, and then creates a team honed to respond to this.’

Work highlights

  • Acting for Briggs in defending a claim brought by Galliford Try Building Limited for £10.4m in relation to alleged delays caused to their main contract works at the Resorts World in Birmingham.

Pinsent Masons LLP

Pinsent Masons LLP has a team of 'very creative problem-solvers' who possess a 'broad range of experience.' The team is led by Neal Morris, Helen Waddell and Jason Hambury. Morris has taken roles on some of the UK's largest and most high-profile infrastructure disputes, while Waddell has strong experience of mediation, adjudication and international arbitration; she is particularly noted for her international expertise, having worked in the firm's Singapore office. Hambury handles arbitrations in relation to energy matters such as LNG facilities and offshore process platforms. Mark Roe has acted on energy related disputes, while Richard Laudy has led on thought leadership matters such as the function of joint ventures in relation to infrastructure projects.

Testimonials

‘They have a very broad range of experience working in particular for contractors, and are very creative problem-solvers. The training/webinars/seminars they offer are always very on point and useful.’

‘Genuine strength in depth in core construction work – the numbers of fee-earners means the breadth of experience in handling specialist disputes is exceptional. Junior associates are given responsibility of running smaller cases from an early stage, which means they gain experience quickly and are capable of contributing beyond their number of years PQE.’

‘Pinsent Masons remain a real force in the construction industry. They are well-known for their commercial approach to cases.’

‘Standout partners are Anthony Bradley, Neal Morris and Shy Jackson.’

‘Zoe De Courcy Arbiser has been invaluable in resolving a long-running dispute with a PFI client. She is not only incredibly smart but also able to apply a common-sense approach to problem solving, which enabled us to resolve our dispute without the need to arbitrate.’

Work highlights

  • Advised the Ferrovial Agroman UK Ltd and Laing O’Rourke Construction Ltd joint venture relating to the £3.8bn ‘Super Sewer’ Thames Tunnel Tideway project.
  • Continuing to advise one of the largest joint ventures involved in the Crossrail project. Advice relates to two of stations as well as other works packages, and has included representing them in negotiations with Crossrail and progressing claims.
  • Representing The Management and Implementation Authority of the Man-made River Project (MMRA) on a major water infrastructure undertaking in ICC international arbitration proceedings defending claims of $250m brought by a contractor joint venture.

White & Case LLP

White & Case LLP is recognised for its international capabilities, handling infrastructure disputes for clients in the power, metals, mining and petrochemicals sectors. The team is led by Ellis Baker who has substantial experience of major arbitrations, including appearances in the ICC. Phillip Capper is noted for his breadth of experience, and is active on disputes concerning rail infrastructure, oil and gas and water plants. His strength lies in international arbitration. Also recommended is David Robertson, a 'strong litigator' with a 'wealth of experience.' His practice has focus on Asia, representing marine engineering and shipbuilding companies in high-profile arbitrations. Mark Goodrich, who has 'strong, in-depth knowledge' has spent time working in Seoul and Tokyo and is noted for his knowledge of construction matters in Asia.

Practice head(s):

Ellis Baker

Testimonials

‘Very deep team with exceptional skills and experience. They are very good at drawing upon resources in multiple offices/regions in order to handle the demands of complex disputes efficiently. Communication was very efficient even when working across multiple time zones.’

‘White & Case provides a higher quality of services than most firms. In-house peers learn from the best and White & Case has some of the largest commissions on which to learn.’

‘Mark Goodrich and Rebecca Shorter have a strong in-depth knowledge of construction.’

‘Other firms tend to get bogged down in theoretical issues and lose sight of the matter at hand. White & Case, however, was excellent, from the beginning, at understanding their client’s goals, learning about the history of what had happened and developing a practical strategy for attaining their client’s goals. ‘

‘David Robertson is a strong litigator. He has a wealth of experience and is very good at finding practical solutions.’

Key clients

Salini Impregilo S.p.A., Jan De Nul N.V., Grupo Unidos por el Canal, S.A

Teollisuuden Voima Oyj (TVO)

Inpex

HOCHTIEF

Carbon Holdings

Senior lenders to Sirius Phase 2

Western Power Corporation

FAST Consortium

Work highlights

  • Ongoing representation of Grupo Unidos por el Canal (Panama) and its shareholders Salini Impregilo (Italy), and Jan De Nul (Belgium) in a dispute with the Panama Canal Authority relating to the $5.5bn Panama Canal expansion project.
  • Represented TVO in a €7bn ICC arbitration against the construction contractor relating to significant delays and cost overruns on the project. The arbitration ran for seven years, with over 100 fact and expert witnesses, with evidence presented at over 18 weeks of hearings.
  • Representing Inpex in respect of numerous arbitrations and project completion issues arising out of the construction of an onshore LNG processing facility. Construction is ongoing and is one part of an overall mega LNG project being developed by Inpex. The overall project has an estimated value of $40bn.

Ashurst

Ashurst's team is noted for its ability to handle multi-jurisdictional disputes, with a particular presence in the Middle East, and has specialist knowledge of distressed projects, as well as strong international arbitration experience. Tom Duncan heads up the practice; he has acted for clients across Europe, Asia and South America on construction and engineering disputes - he is also active on energy matters including renewable energy. Simon Bromwich is noted as an 'impressive and measured' practitioner who provides 'good strategic advice.' His area of expertise is disputes in relation to infrastructure and resources work. Dyfan Owen relocated to London from Dubai in October 2019, bringing four years of major Middle East disputes experience, further strengthening the firm's contentious capabilities.

Practice head(s):

Tom Duncan

Other key lawyers:

Simon Bromwich; Dyfan Owen

Testimonials

‘Ashurst’s contentious construction team has strength and depth, and offers hands on, practical and pragmatic advice, whilst also being very approachable and easy to work with. Their communication skills are excellent. The team is amongst the most impressive I have worked with.’

‘Very good strategic approach, good grasp of issues and pragmatic approach to reaching a conclusion.’

‘Simon Bromwich is very impressive, measured, considered and provides good strategic advice.’

Key clients

Balfour Beatty

British Land

Covanta Energy

Interserve Construction

Lendlease Construction (Europe)

Stagecoach Group

Transport for London (Crossrail and Silvertown Tunnel)

Virgin

Work highlights

  • Advising Lendlease in its defence of separate claims brought by Exchequer Partnership plc and Exchequer Partnership (No.2) plc, both PFI project companies.
  • Advising Lendlease In relation to a third-party claim against Engie Buildings Limited, the facilities manager on the same PFI projects.

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP handles contentious matters for a range of domestic and international contractors in sectors including leisure, transport, energy and oil and gas. The team is led by Richard Davies, who is supported by Alexandra Clough and James Clarke, who relocated to London in April 2020.  Clough is a specialist in construction and engineering disputes, with expertise in arbitration and mediation, while Clarke has advised clients on claims relating to defects, delay and design liability. Associate director Marcus Birch is noted for his experience handling arbitrations and adjudications for clients in regard to international projects. Former team head Bob Maynard left the firm with fellow senior partner Caroline Pope to join DLA Piper in late 2019.

Practice head(s):

Richard Davies

Testimonials

‘A team with excellent experience in both construction and international arbitration. Sophisticated operators in the international arbitration world.   Tough, but fair, litigators, leaving no stone unturned for their clients.’

‘The team is responsive and got up to speed on our matter quickly.’

‘The team was extremely collaborative, diligent and thorough. Excellent multi-office working through London and Singapore, experience of a wide variety of construction and engineering disputes, from medium-sized domestic adjudication to very large oil and gas international arbitrations.’

‘Marcus Birch is clever, very good on his feet and an excellent cross-examiner.’

‘Alex Clough gives sensible commercial advice.’

‘James Clarke was very capable, and was a pleasure to work with over a number of years. He built an excellent team and worked with the client and experts superbly.’

‘James Clarke performs at an extremely high level. Cares passionately about his cases, and his team, gets across the detail but remains sensible and commercial. The complete package.’

Work highlights

  • Advised a joint venture of two international energy companies in relation to two UNCITRAL arbitrations brought by its subcontractor over claims arising out of one of the world’s largest liquefied natural gas plants.
  • Advising a national retailer in relation to claims against a contractor arising out of cladding issues on a large (£90m) mixed use scheme.
  • Advising a JV in relation to two ICC arbitrations, one in which it is responding to a $215m claim by a contractor, and one in which it is claiming against a bank for non-payment of an on-demand bond.

Clyde & Co LLP

Clyde & Co LLP's contentious team has strong capabilities on both the litigation and international arbitration fronts, acting for a impressive domestic and international client base. John Morris, who leads the team, represents purchaser and supplier clients and is also  an approved adjudicator on the Technology and Construction Solicitors' Association's panel. Anthony Albertini is active on construction and engineering disputes, including adjudications, arbitration proceedings and appearing before dispute boards. Mary Anne Roff is another notable practitioner within the team, acting for a domestic and international client base in the energy and infrastructure sectors. Her experience primarily lies in international construction arbitration.

Practice head(s):

John Morris

Other key lawyers:

Anthony Albertini; Mary Anne Roff

Key clients

Standardkessel Baumgarte Gmbh

TOTAL

DLA Piper

DLA Piper's multifaceted team has a strong depth of litigation and international arbitration experience, covering contentious matters relating o real estate development, UK infrastructure projects and overseas work. Sector expertise includes conventional and renewable energy, process engineering and heavy industry. Paul Giles leads the team and is experienced in all forms of dispute resolution, handling weighty matters concerning infrastructure projects both in the UK and internationally. He has been joined by Bob Maynard and Caroline Pope, who came on board from Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP in May 2020. Combined, they bring decades of experience of handling major contentious matters. Anna Mills represents major contractors in the international sphere.

Practice head(s):

Paul Giles

Testimonials

‘Very diligent and detailed. Able to identify the issues quickly and to be able to provide guidance and advice in a clear and concise manner.’

‘DLA’s team were incredible to work with, and supported us on a pro bono basis as a non-profit social enterprise. However, I feel we received the same level of care, attention and service as we would have done if we’d have paid the going rate. For a social enterprise, to have the backing of such a powerful and experienced law firm behind us made an incredible difference and helped us navigate a complex capital project and break down of relationship with our main contractor. It also shows the care and commitment that this firm has to corporate social responsibility, and making a difference where it can to organisations like ours who are doing important work in our communities. The team did everything they possibly could to explore all options with the contractor before we terminated their contract. They have an incredibly reasonable outlook, and attempt to explore both sides to see if there are any other options, using termination only as a last resort. When we got to that point, they also supported the next stage of our work, in appointing a new team of contractors and supporting the next phase of our work. They are truly wonderful people and go above and beyond the call of duty.’

‘Ed Shaw is a very capable lawyer and provides excellent management and advice. He is easily approachable and is able to communicate complex issues in a clear and considered manner.’

Key clients

Erith Contractors Limited

State Enterprise Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant

Work highlights

  • Represented Erith Contractors Limited in a final account adjudication dispute with a sub-contractor, valued at £8m. The project related to the London 2012 Olympic Park.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP represents major UK and international clients on contentious construction matters, resolving complex disputes with its expertise in litigation and international arbitration. The practice is headed up by James Doe, who handles a range of contentious issues relating to major infrastructure, construction and engineering projects. His strength rests in his international arbitration experience and work on energy and power matters. David Nitek, who is 'extremely helpful, knowledgeable and patient', has a broad knowledge of adjudication, arbitration and litigation. Emma Schaafsma joined the firm's London office in September 2019, having formerly headed up the firm's team in Tokyo. She has significant experience of disputes concerning power and process plants, LNG facilities and rail projects, including issues relating to delay and disruption as well as defects.

Practice head(s):

James Doe

Other key lawyers:

David Nitek; Emma Schaafsma

Testimonials

‘HSF have been professional, knowledgeable and very helpful with our case. Their strengths are the knowledge and ability to get a clear picture of heavy technical issues quickly.’

‘I worked with HSF’s team on an international arbitration. I was impressed with the knowledge and understanding of the legal team.’

‘The team showed very good client empathy and an ability to focus upon client needs as well as embrace and align multiple expert disciplines.’

‘David Nitek is the lead for us and has been extremely helpful, knowledgeable and patient with the management of a joint venture issue.’

‘David Nitek is very personable and easy to work with, always remaining calm and ready to consider all angles.’

‘Emma Schaafsma has deep insight how the legal arguments in the dispute resolution process will be deployed in future and grasps the expected legal issues.’

‘Emma Schaafsma is a very good lawyer, who has a very good ability to provide sound legal advice and at the same time manage client expectations.’

Key clients

Transport for London

Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners

HFW

HFW stands out for its work on international construction disputes, especially in the Middle East. The practice handles mining and energy matters as well as contentious issues relating to major infrastructure projects. The team is led by Max Wieliczko who has a focus on offshore projects. 'Outstanding litigatorMichael Sergeant is known for his broad international practice, and is particularly active in the Middle East on high-profile energy and infrastructure disputes. Kijong Nam, who joined from Ince in mid-2018, has relocated to the firm's Dubai office.

Practice head(s):

Max Wieliczko

Other key lawyers:

Michael Sergeant

Testimonials

‘The construction team at HFW has enormous experience of construction disputes both domestically and also in the Middle East.’

‘The team has an in-depth understanding of the construction industry and construction law and are realistic about expectations.’

‘Michael Sergeant is an outstanding litigator, a brilliant manager of very large multinational and multi-disciplinary teams, and has superb commercial awareness. He is a very good lawyer, and astute to the commercial objectives of clients; and he has enormous experience of, and expertise in, disputes in the Middle East.’

‘Michael Sergeant is a very experienced lawyer and knows exactly what legal arguments can be used in the variety of the circumstances he is involved in. He is particularly experienced at resolving disputes through arbitration.’

Key clients

VolkerWessels Group (UK and Holland)

Kuwait Oil Company

Visser & Smit Hanab B.V.

Barhale Limited

Hochtief Solutions AG

Belectric Gulf Limited

Posco Plantec

Robert Bird Group

J Reddington Group

Al Gihaz Contracting Co

Work highlights

  • Advising an international Joint Venture on a £600m claim for extension of time, time-related costs and variations arising from the construction of a new metro line in the Middle East.
  • Acting for a major offshore wind EPC Contractor in a £133m adjudication in respect of the construction of a new UK offshore wind farm.
  • Acting for an international construction Joint Venture in respect of claims against a design consortium for negligence and breach of contract arising from the design of the £1.35bn Queensferry Road Bridge in Scotland.

Hogan Lovells International LLP

Hogan Lovells International LLP 's global construction and engineering practice, which has been 'part of construction and engineering landscape for years', is led by Roberta Downey, who has decades of experience of infrastructure and construction disputes relating to rail infrastructure, telecoms, wastewater treatment, recycling facilities and control systems. Rupert Sydenham is noted for his expertise on procurement disputes, with over twenty years of experienced in the construction sphere. Angus Rankin has acted on issues relating to nuclear power, renewable power, conventional thermal power, chemical plants and rail systems, displaying strong technical knowledge.

Practice head(s):

Roberta Downey

Other key lawyers:

Rupert Sydenham; Angus Rankin

Testimonials

‘The team provide excellent, high quality support to in-house counsel. They grasp complex technical issues and deliver what is needed, quickly and within budget. They are proactive and easy to work with.’

‘They have been part of construction and engineering landscape for years and it really shows. They’ve done all manner of construction disputes in every sector under the sun and this experience is passed down to the next generation, meaning you get excellent service, whoever you are dealing with on matters. The esteem the market holds them in is shown by the amount of repeat work they receive.’

‘The solicitor dedicated to our market has remained in the prime place to assist us for a long time by utilising the firm’s vast resources.’

Key clients

Argent

Bechtel

BP

Department for Transport

EDF Energy

IHI Corporation

Mayer Brown International LLP

Mayer Brown International LLP's team is 'strong, has an attractive culture and is commercially effective', and is headed up by the highly experienced Michael Regan. The practice represents contractors, construction professionals and governments, with sector expertise which extends to process engineering, transport, mining and retail. Regan has advised on claims relating to defects and poor workmanship alongside his deep experience in international arbitration. London managing partner Sally Davies has two prime areas of focus; construction-related insurance matters and all forms of construction disputes, with a notable emphasis on Korean clients. James Morris is noted as being 'very knowledgeable', acting for consultants, insurers and employers. Kwadwo Sarkodie has acted on disputes concerning loss and expense and defective works while Jonathan Stone advises on professional indemnity claims.

Practice head(s):

Michael Regan

Testimonials

‘The team is strong, has an attractive culture and is commercially effective.’

‘I like the combination of very strong legal advice with a practical approach to resolving an issue.’

‘Jonathan Stone is knowledgeable and very commercial in his outlook. In particular, he has an ability to understand the imperatives and relative strengths of all parties involved in an issue and to articulate quite complex issues and ideas. This can be very helpful in resolving contentious issues. Jonathan also appears to be liked and respected by all with whom he comes into contact.’

‘Sally Davies is, in my opinion, amazing. Because of her great personality, knowledge and fantastic advice, she commands huge respect from everyone.’

‘James Morris very good and very knowledgeable.’

Key clients

QBE, Zurich and many other members of the London insurance market

Galliford Try

Kier

Costain

Gardiner & Theobald

Hyundai Corporation

GS Corporation

Nesma & Partners Contracting Company Limited

Alghanim International General Trading & Contracting LLC

Alstom Transport

Work highlights

  • Assisting Costain and its insurers following problems identified with the paving at the Port of Felixstowe. Costain is pursuing a claim for £20m against its design consultant, Haskoning.
  • Advising Costain and its insurers in relation to issues relating to the design and construction of the road widening scheme on the A465. Issues relate to the additional time and expense of constructing large retaining walls in a difficult environment.

Norton Rose Fulbright

Norton Rose Fulbright's contentious construction practice is active across sectors including real estate, rail, roads, ports and airport infrastructure, waste and water. The London team is led by Donald Warnock , whose expertise lies in energy and infrastructure disputes. Simon Ramsden is known for a two-fold disputes practice, first in relation to major infrastructure projects and second in relation to PFI/PPP work. James Rogers is an international arbitration practitioner with a specialist knowledge of infrastructure matters. He has advised in regard to gas power projects and offshore facilities. The practice supports a wide client base of utility companies, developers, contractors and sub-contractors, financiers, consultants, and suppliers.

Practice head(s):

Donald Warnock

Other key lawyers:

Simon Ramsden; James Rogers

Testimonials

‘All members are very knowledgeable, both from a theoretical and a practical standpoint.’

‘Very good lawyers – they know the law and the practice. Indeed, they have absolute availability for the client.’

‘The NRF team serving our company combines the extensive resources of London office with on-the-ground team in the United Arab Emirates. They provide clear, sound and commercially pragmatic legal advice in a responsive and timely manner. We have found them very cost effective/efficient for our needs compared to other firms.’

Donald Warnock is very knowledgeable, both from a theoretical and a practical standpoint.’

‘James Rogers is really sensible with the important issues.’

‘Donald Warnock is a valued business partner who always makes himself available and is a pleasure to work with. We appreciate his experience and insights and ability to tap into extensive network and of leading experts and arbitrators.’

Key clients

BAM Nuttall

Thales

Ferrovial Agroman UK Limited

UBB Waste (Essex) Limited

Sacyr

Sumitomo Mitsubishi Banking Corporation Europe Limited

Husky Energy

Work highlights

  • Acting for the Spanish construction company, Sacyr, in relation to its role as lead member of the consortium which undertook the expansion of the Panama Canal. This includes representation in ICC arbitration proceedings in Miami, defending claims by the Panama Canal Authority for the return of advance payments in excess of $800m. Representation in parallel English court proceedings concerning efforts by the Panama Canal Authority to call on certain advance payment guarantees in excess of $300m.
  • Acting for Hyde Housing Association in connection with disputes with claims arising out of the design and installation of defective cladding systems on seven high rise buildings in the UK in connection with the Grenfell fire. Proceedings have been commenced against Rooff Limited and Mulalley & Co Limited in the Technology and Construction Court.
  • Continuing to advise UK Green Investment Bank PLC, Bayerische Landesbank, Shinsei and SMBC as the Lenders on the Derby Waste to energy PPP project.

Addleshaw Goddard

Addleshaw Goddard's 'well-balanced' practice is present on PFI construction disputes in the TCC, multi-party extended process adjudications, as well as international arbitration over infrastructure and energy disputes. Jonathan Tattersall heads the team; he has grown the firm's healthcare expertise and represented sponsors and project companies in health sector projects. Gerlando Butera acts in international arbitration concerning overseas projects while Julia Court is active in the transport, student accommodation, logistics and energy sectors.

Practice head(s):

Jonathan Tattersall

Other key lawyers:

Julia Court; Gerlando Butera

Testimonials

‘The Addleshaw Goddard construction dispute resolution team is very well balanced, with the right and flexible mix of lawyers of varying levels of seniority and experience. The team draws seamlessly on lawyers based both in the City and regionally to ensure the right skill mix and to deliver value for money.’

‘I received very sensible advice from the team throughout a very testing period involving a deadlocked corporate board, an impending termination of a major project agreement and a fraught construction project.’

‘Jonathan Tattersall is experienced, sensible, pragmatic and calm.’

Key clients

Konoike Construction Co. Ltd

Resource Recovery Solutions (Derbyshire) Limited

BAM Nuttall Limited

Suez

Work highlights

  • Acting for a global contractor in relation to a healthcare PFI dispute valued in excess of £38m.
  • Acting for an Italian contractor in relation to a dispute valued at approximately $136m regarding refurbishment of a motorway in Eastern Europe.
  • Advising a global contractor on the ongoing dispute relating to a transport project in the East of England.

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie's contentious construction team has two principal focuses; disputes relating to major commercial, residential and industrial developments in the UK; and matters concerning heavy engineering and process plant projects. Team head Steve Abraham is a specialist in the realm of international arbitration, with mining, energy and infrastructure being key areas of his practice. Also of note is practitioner Kate Corby, who resolves construction and engineering disputes via both litigation and arbitration.

Practice head(s):

Steve Abraham

Other key lawyers:

Kate Corby

Testimonials

‘The Baker McKenzie team were able to give advice on the laws of different countries at the same time. This was especially important as were doing business in Russia with an Austrian company under English law.’

‘The Baker McKenzie team have excellent communication abilities, and they respond punctually.’

Key clients

Anaklia Development Consortium (ADC)

State of Kuwait

Work highlights

  • Acting for Anaklia Development Consortium in its ICC arbitration claim in Geneva against the Government of Georgia under the Investment Agreement for the construction, development and operation of the Anaklia port project. In parallel, advising on the negotiations with the Government of Georgia, including on the implications of restructuring the investment and/or the project.
  • Obtained instructions from the Saudi Binladin Group on a portfolio of construction related disputes, most of which are worth over $100m. These cover a range of construction projects in Saudi Arabia, the Maldives and Qatar, including: two airports, a hotel, convention center and mosque complex and buildings in the new financial.
  • Continue to act for a US/Saudi Arabia based titanium products company on a host of inter-connected issues arising from the catastrophic failure of its new smelting plant in Saudi Arabia. Assisted client with achieving a settlement in relation to its $144m insurance claim as part of an arbitration.

Beale & Co

Beale & Co has a strong set of 'very experienced construction lawyers.' Sheena Sood leads the practice and has significant experience advising contractors, engineers, architects, health and safety professionals and surveyors, working on a range of civil claims in the construction sphere. Antony Smith has acted on a wide variety of construction disputes, with a focus on health and safety, advising on on-site responsibilities. Michael Salau is experienced in arbitration, adjudication, mediation as well as litigation,  defending clients on issues arising from pollution and contamination. James Vernon is able to 'deal with issues in a quick, intelligent and efficient way.' 

Practice head(s):

Sheena Sood

Testimonials

‘Very experienced construction lawyers.’

‘Easy to communicate with and first-class quick response times.’

‘James Vernon has great communication skills, deals with issues in a quick, intelligent and efficient way, leading to cost-effective solutions. Very personable.’ 

Key clients

Arup Group Limited

Mace

NIRAS

WSP

WYG

Association for Consultancy and Engineering

Colas

Aecom

BAM Nuttall

Atkins (a member of the SNC-Lavalin Group)

Work highlights

  • Advising a multinational company on a dispute arising out of the construction of a Hydro Electric Power Station in Central Africa that is being undertaken by an SPV set up by the client – a case arising from the poor performance of an EPC contractor which has resulted in the completion date being missed.
  • Acting for a multinational construction consultancy in Dispute Board and Arbitration proceedings arising out of the design and construction of a number of wharves and jetties as part of a large-scale international shipping support project in the Asia-Pacific region.
  • Defending a firm of consulting engineers in relation to claims by a tier 1 contractor concerning defects in a mixed-use development project in London, allegedly caused because the client’s designs failed to take into account risks associated with rising groundwater, which caused cracking and flooding at the site – a complex, high profile and substantial claim.

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Steven Cary leads the team at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP - with a background in civil and structural engineering, he is strongly placed to advise on technical construction matters. He is able to resolve disputes through all forms of DR including mediation, expert determination, adjudication, arbitration or litigation. Fiona Edmond handles commercial property construction projects such as hotels and mixed use developments. Kevin Forsyth is a key partner, and is noted for his knowledge of the renewable energy market, especially wind power projects. The firm's broad client base is catered to by the practice's experienced bench of practitioners including Rupa Lakha who advises developers and sub-contractors, and Michael O’Connor, who handles both domestic and international disputes.

Practice head(s):

Steven Carey

Testimonials

‘A very responsive and hardworking team who have a good knowledge of the technical aspects of construction and seek to provide pragmatic and commercial advice to their clients.’

‘The team is not too big that it becomes impersonal, but is large enough to have specialists covering all required areas. The size of the firm means that good relationships can be built up, and a collective team spirit is important when dealing with problems or complicated agreements that requires patience.’ 

‘Rupa Lakha is very approachable, hardworking and professional in her approach. Rupa is always keen to find solutions and she is very attuned to business issues. Rupa is always very responsive to requests for advice and assistance and works hard to create and develop a strong partner/client relationship.’

Key clients

Atkins

BioMed Realty LLP

Countryside Properties

Derwent London PLC

Ferrovial Aggroman

Mace

Manhattan Loft Corporation

Permasteelisa Group

Reynolds Polymer

Ridgeford

Salamanca Group

Siemens Postal, Parcel and Airport Logistics Limited

Sipral

United Living Group

London Array Limited

Clifford Chance LLP

Clifford Chance LLP's practice is active on disputes relating to infrastructure, energy, oil and gas in the construction sphere. David Metzger is the global head of the magic circle firm's international construction group.

Practice head(s):

David Metzger

Corbett & Co International Construction Lawyers Ltd

The team at specialist firm Corbett & Co International Construction Lawyers Ltd are described as 'true professionals.' They act on disputes arising out of FIDIC contracts and also handle international construction arbitration. Edward Corbett and Andrew Tweeddale jointly lead the team; managing director Corbett 'has a keen intellect and a very quick mind' while Tweeddale handles contentious matters across Europe, the Middle East and Africa, advising contractors, engineers and architects. Dominic Helps is another key member of the team.

Practice head(s):

Edward Corbett; Andrew Tweeddale

Other key lawyers:

Dominic Helps

Testimonials

‘The team at Corbett & Co are unique in their focus on FIDIC related international construction work. They are entirely objective in their advice to clients. They strive to achieve the best outcome available. They are true professionals.’

‘This practice is unique in their knowledge, skills, client care and attention to detail. It is the best legal practice I have come across.’

‘All personnel at Corbett & Co are personable and approachable. Edward Corbett has a keen intellect and a very quick mind.’

‘Andrew Tweeddale has a prodigious memory and a huge appetite for work.’

‘Dominic Helps is just so brainy.’

Key clients

H.F. Wiebe

Emek Insaat Sti Ltd.

WTE Wassertechnik GMBH

Ethiopian Roads Authority

Struijk Group

Work highlights

  • Advised international engineering consultant Poyry on the termination of an Italian-led JV’s contract on a major hydro-electric construction project in Laos.
  • Instructed by Ethiopian Roads Authority on three disputes relating to delay and disruption and termination.
  • Advising H.F. Wiebe on various claims and on general contractual matters in relation to a railway project in Eastern Europe.

Dentons

Dentons' 'first class' contentious construction team acts for housebuilders, retailers, developers and PPP stakeholders. The practice is led by Akin Akinbode who is 'an excellent strategist' and by Gurbinder Grewal, 'one of the sharpest minds in construction disputes.' Akinbode has a broad construction and engineering disputes practice but focuses particularly on PFI-related disputes. Grewal has been active on UK and international disputes work including energy matters and issues relating to defects in infrastructure projects. Esther McDermott is noted for her arbitration practice as well as her litigation experience  in the TCC.

Practice head(s):

Akin Akinbode; Gurbinder Grewal

Other key lawyers:

Esther McDermott

Testimonials

‘This team is first class. There are no weak links. The partners have a great flow of work from tier 1 contractor and consultant clients. They are all sector specialists with good profile. The associates are bright and totally specialised.’

‘Real strength in depth and industry big-hitters. Key strengths: client service and great capacity to get to the job done.’

‘The Dentons team is truly global with expertise in most jurisdictions. They also work on a wide range of projects. Their real strength is their in depth technical knowledge. They have a technical understanding of engineering and construction projects which allows them to get to the heart of the dispute.’

‘Gurbinder Grewal builds a fantastic rapport with clients. A pleasure to work with and work for.’

‘Akin Akinbode is an excellent strategist and analyst on complex contractual issues. Also a calm presence under pressure.’

‘Gurbinder Grewal has one of the sharpest minds in construction disputes. This combined with a near encyclopaedic memory makes him a fierce advocate.’

‘Esther McDermott works exceptionally hard and is deeply committed to assisting her clients. No task is too great.’

Key clients

G.E. C.I.F. Trustees Ltd

Galliford Try Building

Leonardo S.p.A.

Morgan Sindall Infrastructure Limited

Sainsbury’s Supermarkets Limited

Work highlights

  • Representing an Italian multinational company responsible for the construction of an installation in Qatar in a €14.6m dispute heard in the Qatar Financial Court. The dispute was against a Qatari financial institution relating to the wrongful rejection of demands on advance payment and performance securities.
  • Advising Morgan Sindall in relation to a multi-party dispute in the TCC arising in relation to the redevelopment of Old Trafford Cricket Ground, Manchester. The dispute relates to a claim for reimbursement of multimillion-pounds worth of remedial costs arising out of negligence on the part of Morgan Sindall’s sub-contractor and consulting engineer.
  • Acting for Galliford Try Building in respect of its dispute with its lead design consultant and steelwork subcontractor on a development on the South Coast of England. The dispute relates to a multimillion-pound claim for losses arising out of delays caused to the project by delays and negligence on the part of the consultant and subcontractor.

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP has a strong international arbitration practice and handles contentious matters across the Middle East, Europe and East Asia. Jonathan Douglas and Simon Oats lead the team; Douglas acts on a range of construction and engineering disputes, with experience in various sectors such as retail, logistics and clean energy. Oats is the global head of the practice and works across multiple jurisdictions. Jessica Neuberger is active in the built environment, renewable energy and infrastructure sectors with nearly two decades of experience in the field. The well-regarded Nick Pinder also acts on international matters with a specialism in energy work.

Practice head(s):

Jonathan Douglas; Simon Oats

Other key lawyers:

Jessica Neuberger; Nick Pinder

Testimonials

‘Eversheds Sutherland has a longstanding record of work on complex energy projects in the UK. The team stands out from their competitors due to their a unique appreciation and understanding of our business, which arises from their knowledge of the industry. They fully integrate with our business and project teams, to understand our business needs and then tailor their strategy accordingly.’

‘Nick Pinder has an in-depth knowledge of the energy market, and is able to provide astute strategic advice to all areas of the business. He stands out as a lawyer who can really get his teeth into the engineering issues and whilst he is tenacious, his advice is pragmatic.’

‘Nick Pinder’s attention to detail is second to none and his planning is truly excellent. He has tremendous foresight and structures the work and responses to the other side in order to maximise our position.’

Key clients

The Hospital Company (Liverpool) Limited

Lendlease

Glennmont Partners

Thames Water Utilities Limited

Dairy Crest

Jean François Clin

60 Curzon Street Developments Limited (an SPV of Brockton Everlast Inc)

Blackrock

Work highlights

  • Instructed to provide advice to The Hospital Company which was set up to deliver the £400m Royal Liverpool Hospital PFI Project.  Advised in relation to the restructuring of the project and its transfer to the NHS Trust.
  • Advising LendLease Construction (Europe) which was was employed as part of a Project Finance Initiative (“PFI”) to design and build Student accommodation at the University.
  • Advising Glennmont Partners, in their process of acquiring the Piiparinmäki windfarm from Ilmatar Energy, a joint venture between Omnes-managed Capenergie 3 and Ilmatar Windpower plc. Advised on all aspects of the transaction including: (1) the corporate and financing; (2) drafting and negotiation of the construction and project agreements to be entered into with the seller group on completion; and (3) drafting and negotiation of a power purchase agreement with Google covering a significant portion of the total future production of the asset.

Fieldfisher

Fieldfisher significantly boosted its contentious construction offering with the hire of an RPC team in early 2019. The practice is led by Dan Preston, who has experience of handling major adjudications and high-profile TCC litigation, representing clients on issues relating to infrastructure and commercial property. He works alongside David Thorne who represents suppliers in disputes regarding construction, infrastructure and PFI/outsourcing matters. New partner Jamie Key is also of note, working on defects claims on major infrastructure projects and disruption claims on energy matters.

Practice head(s):

Dan Preston

Other key lawyers:

David Thorne; Jamie Key

Testimonials

‘Fieldfisher have an excellent construction team.’

‘David Thorne and Dan Preston are both standout partners, taking on high profile and challenging cases. David is a consummate professional, able to manage very complex multi-party disputes, and is always focused on the commercial needs of his clients. Dan is an excellent litigator, fierce negotiator and someone you would always want on your side.’

‘They have a clear and active understanding of our business – they focus on solutions and do not over-lawyer every aspect of a problem.’

‘The team have a good all-round perspective on the construction market and the position of the various different participants in that market.’

Key clients

Morgan Sindall Group

VolkerWessels Group

Sir Robert McAlpine

Hammerson plc

DAFA Properties Group

M Group (including Morrisons Utility Services)

SPIE

ENGIE

Costco

United Living

McLaren Construction

Rocket Properties

Muse Developments Limited

City Developments Limited (including Singapura)

Royal Academy of Dance

Royal Bank of Canada

Interserve Construction

Shepherd Building Group (including Portakabin)

Work highlights

  • Advising Volker in relation to TCC litigation concerning the new tram stabling and maintenance depot in Blackpool.
  • Acting for Waterside Places (a JV between Muse Developments and the Canal and River Trust) in pursuing claims arising from the design and construction on Islington Wharf.
  • Acting for Interserve in the successful defence of TCC proceedings brought against them in relation to the construction of the Liberty Stadium in Swansea.

K&L Gates LLP

K&L Gates LLP's contentious construction practice represents employers, contractors and consultants in every forum of dispute resolution, including adjudication, international arbitration, mediation and expert determination. Matthew Smith and Kevin Greene jointly lead the team. Smith handles disputes in relation to energy and infrastructure projects in the UK and internationally. Greene has acted on major developments across the UK and has a long and broad practice acting for investors and employers.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Smith; Kevin Greene

Testimonials

‘The K&L Gates construction team is second to none. Advice is always on point, practical and timely. Trickier issues are dealt with in a straightforward manner without recourse to legal jargon, and all the members of the team provide the right level of support at the right time and go above and beyond to deliver to demanding time scales.’

‘Real depth of experience clear instruction and positive support/direction. Respectful and supportive challenge to draft opinion was much appreciated. Collegiate attitudes prevail across the team.’

‘Their knowledge, capability and customer service are exceptional, however it is their teamwork that sets them apart, and it is always a pleasure to work with them.’

‘Matt Smith is something of a legend, but free of any affectation that might otherwise be expected. He is always in command of the subject matter, no matter how arcane.’

Key clients

Nuveen Real Estate and group companies including St James Edinburgh Unit Trust

Hitachi Ltd

Transport for London (including London Underground Limited, LUL Nominee SSL Ltd and LUL Nominee BCV Ltd)

Crossrail Ltd

Qatar Rail

Laing O’Rourke Group

Grupo Pacadar

Renfe

Halcrow (Consulting Engineers & Architects)

Mass Rapid Transit Malaysia

Crown Commercial Services (appointed to the panel – see below)

Angola LNG

Kennedys

Kennedys' contentious construction practice, which provides 'very clear and to the point' adviceis headed up by Iain Corbett, who has decades of experience in litigation and international arbitration. He has a track record of dealing with disputes relating to infrastructure projects and commercial and residential developments, and health and safety issues stemming from fire damage and flood risk. Paul Carter is noted for representing contractors, construction professionals and infrastructure companies in disputes. The 'very professional' Michael Hogg has worked with insurers on construction and property damage matters while senior associate Louis Foscolo is praised for 'working unbelievably hard'.

Practice head(s):

Iain Corbett

Testimonials

‘Very good value for money. Advice is very clear and to the point. A good team with good knowledge.’

‘Kennedys understand the insurance business from our perspective. They have learned how I and my company wants thing done. They are able and not afraid to tell us when we are wrong. They are constructive and eager to find ways to accommodate us.’

‘Iain Corbett is very technical. His reports and advice is clear. He understands clients well.’

‘Louis Foscolo is a very good associate. Will happily run claims as per client wishes. Works unbelievably hard. Partner material.’

‘Michael Hogg is direct in a constructive manner. He is very professional and is not easily brought out of balance. He keeps his calm and is consistent in his work and behaviour.’

Key clients

Paul Hastings (Europe) LLP

ISG Plc

Bam Construct UK

Protector Forsikring ASA

Willmott Partnership Homes Limited

Volkerfitzpatrick Ltd

Donald Insall Associates

Hannover Re

Kier Group

Fletcher Priest

Work highlights

  • Advising the Norwegian insurer of the Grenfell Tower. Acting for the Protector Insurance, the property and liability insurer of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea and the RBKC Tenant Management Organisation.
  • Acted for the main contractor and their insurers following the discovery, close to practical completion, that a care facility in Basingstoke was structurally unsound. Guided the client through the claim by their employer, a local authority, rectification of the works and the subsequent claim against the negligent subcontractor who designed and built the key parts of the steel framed structure.
  • Acting for Cambridge Polymer Roofing in a case concerning a fire at a school under construction in Lewisham, for which the roofing sub- contractor was assumed to be responsible.

Macfarlanes LLP

Macfarlanes LLP advises a wide range of clients including developers, investors, housebuilders, occupiers, contractors, institutions and banks, handling a variety of contentious construction matters. The team well-regarded for providing 'a first-class, hands-on partner service.' Mark Lawrence has a strong track record on construction, engineering and infrastructure disputes, taking cases to the High Court, the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. Team head Douglas Wass acts on PFI disputes in relation to projects such as hospitals, roads and universities.

Practice head(s):

Doug Wass

Other key lawyers:

Mark Lawrence; Andy Mather

Testimonials

‘Macfarlanes has been helping us through a very contentious construction project with a side variety of delay and disruption claims. They are fully understanding of the letter of the law (and regulations) but also the personalities on both sides of the dispute.’

‘A great, relatively small team, good collaborative working ethos and team spirit. Hardworking but always with a positive attitude even when under pressure.’

‘Excellent knowledge at all levels in the company. Reliable quick responses to queries and measured and well thought through advice.’

‘Mark Lawrence has been an effective sounding board, letting the frustration flow (internally) while helping to distill the outbound message to a more-appropriate dispassionate tone. It has been a pleasure to work with Mark.’

‘Calm and very easy to communicate with, even with difficult messages. They build up a solid feeling of trust.’

‘Doug Wass and Andy Mather both provide a first-class, hands-on partner service. Everything said and done is carefully thought-through and well researched.’

Key clients

Catalyst Healthcare (Manchester) Limited

Grove Developments Limited

Aggregate Industries

Legal & General

Stanhope

Weston Homes

Brookfield

Realstar

European Land

Kohn Pedersen Fox

Global Switch

Work highlights

  • Represented Catalyst in an adjudication in relation to claims by an NHS Trust for substantial deductions from monthly service payments arising from allegedly defective fire doors at Central Manchester University Hospital. Representing Catalyst in court proceedings which it has commenced against the NHS Trust and the contractor, Lendlease, for a final determination of the issues in dispute.
  • Representing the successful Claimant in the Court of Appeal case of Grove Developments Ltd v S&T( UK) Ltd [2018], one of the leading construction law cases of the last five years.
  • Acting for Aggregate Industries in a dispute with Amey LG Ltd concerning substantial claims for additional payment in relation to works carried out by AI on the Sheffield Streets Ahead PFI project. The dispute involved several adjudications and a litigation claim which was heard in the Technology and Construction Court in October 2019.

Reed Smith LLP

Reed Smith LLP is highly rated for its ability to 'achieve successful results on high complexity construction and technology cases.' The practice is headed up by the 'extremely practical and commercially aware' Vincent Rowan, who has an active international arbitration practice in relation to infrastructure projects. He is supported by Shareena Edmonds who acts on energy disputes and is praised for her 'brilliant client management and expert management skills'.

Practice head(s):

Vincent Rowan

Other key lawyers:

Shareena Edmonds

Testimonials

‘A very experienced team on complex construction and engineering disputes, particularly in the process, pharma, oil and gas and energy sectors. They take a very practical and intelligent approach to complex matters. Great to work with and always seeking to provide clients with best advice in the circumstances.’

‘An impressive commercial litigation and dispute resolution team. Highly rated, above other firms, for their ability to develop cases and achieve successful results on high complexity construction and technology cases.’

‘Reed Smith’s team is simply the best at dealing with large complex construction disputes. Their honest structured methodical approach brings along with it as much confidence as a client can get in the likely result.’

‘Vince Rowan is a very experienced lawyer who is always a pleasure to work with. Vince is extremely practical, very commercially aware and always provides well considered advice to clients. Vince is the go-to lawyer for complex energy and process projects.’

‘Shareena Edmonds is very bright with brilliant client management and expert management skills. Shareena is a pleasure to work with and just like Vince, is an automatic choice for complex energy and process projects.’

‘Vincent Rowan is a valued business partner for both our UK and international litigation teams. Provides direct and pragmatic advice. Highly knowledgeable of key experts in the international arbitration and litigation arena.’

Stephenson Harwood

Stephenson Harwood deals with construction and engineering disputes for clients in the oil and gas, power and energy, real estate and rail sectors, acting for both supplier and purchaser clients. Ron Nobbs co-leads the team, providing 'strong, focused advice' on mediation and adjudications. Co-head Paul Thwaite handles work such as contractor claims for delay and disruption. Charlotte Heywood was promoted to partner in 2019.

Practice head(s):

Ron Nobbs; Paul Thwaite

Other key lawyers:

Charlotte Heywood

Testimonials

‘Experienced in complex construction related disputes, including NEC forms of contract; ability to identify the need for and to access relevant experts to develop independent opinions.’

‘Excellent client service.’

Sound, honest, commercial and practical advice.’

‘Competent, diligent, flexible, accessible, responsive. Capable individuals with a good understanding or ability to form an understanding, that are able to make themselves available as and when needed in order to progress and resolve specific issues and to respond well to changing requirements.’

‘Ron Nobbs is quick to understand the issues and provides strong, focused advice.’

‘Paul Thwaite manages very large and important procurement challenges. His clear advice on strategy is key to a successful outcome.’

Key clients

ENGIE

Veolia

Multiplex

ABB UK

Mala Engineering

The Royal College of Art

University of Greenwich

4C Hotels Group

LaSalle Investment Management

Thornsett Developments

CAF (Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles)

Giffen Group

Work highlights

  • Advised Veolia in relation to its claims against its Employer (an Equitix entity) arising out of the Sheffield biomass fuel plant, including the related Part 8 proceedings issued by Equitix against Veolia in relation to the interpretation of the ‘tripartite’ adjudication procedures in the O&M Agreement and the EPC Contract.
  • Advising Multiplex in relation to a claim arising out of its appointment in September 2011 to carry out design and construction works at 100 Bishopsgate, a £400m 39-storey tower development in the City of London pursuant to the terms of a design and build contract.
  • Advising ENGIE in relation to two sets of related court proceedings: a dispute with Lend Lease Construction (Europe) arising out of a claim brought by Exchequer Partnership (No 2) Plc against Lend Lease; and a related claim brought by ENGIE against Exchequer Partnership Plc and Lend Lease. The claims relate to alleged defects in the design and construction of the major refurbishment of the government building at 100 Parliament Street  and alleged failures in facilities management under a 30-year PFI agreement.

Trowers & Hamlins LLP

Trowers & Hamlins LLP has a 'very diligent and thorough' team led by Anthony Yates, who has particular expertise on contentious issues concerning cladding and fire safety, acting for a range of clients in both the private and public sectors. The team  was strengthened by the hire of Louise Elmes in January 2019; she has brought her international construction expertise from Fieldfisher, where she led the contentious construction team. Theresa Mohammed is another key practitioner - she advises clients in the hotel and residential development sectors on high level technical disputes.

Practice head(s):

Anthony Yates

Other key lawyers:

Louise Elmes; Theresa Mohammed

Testimonials

‘Very diligent and thorough.’

‘The team has the ability to work with the client’s interests at heart – they offer clear advice and have the ability to make you understand relatively complex issues and their position within the wider picture. This is very helpful both when making decisions, and when stresses and concerns come to the fore.’

Key clients

The Berkeley Group plc

Apache Capital

Secretary of State and LocatED

Bouygues UK Limited

ST Interiors (UK) Limited

Cannon Corporate Limited

Cannon Corporate UK Limited

Cannon Corporate International Limited

Farm Renewables Limited

ABC Electrification Limited

Broadley Energy Limited

Poplar Harca Projects Limited

Rossair Limited

Paradigm Land Limited

Cambridge Industries Limited

Swan Housing Association

London Borough of Camden

CDS Co-operatives

The Guinness Partnership

Reading Borough Council

Mount Anvil Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for S&T, seeking payment of £14m due to a payment notice default and then will be seeking the remainder of its final account sum of £28m.
  • Acting for the London Borough of Camden in relation to a dispute concerning the Chalcots estate housing PFI project. This has arisen due to the type of ACM building cladding used (which is similar to that used at Grenfell), along with other defects within the building.
  • Acting for ABC Electrification Limited including in respect of the interpretation of ‘Disallowed Cost’ in clause 1(1)(j)(iii) of the standard form ICE Conditions of Contract (Target Cost) as amended by the industry wide bespoke set of amendments, NR12.

Vinson & Elkins RLLP

Vinson & Elkins RLLP is praised for its 'very business-minded and solution oriented team' led by Nick Henchie, who primarily focuses on international arbitration for construction and engineering clients. His most prominent work has included acting for the Panama Canal Authority in a number of ICC arbitrations, and is described as 'a masterful tactician'. Scott Stiegler is also noted for his expertise in energy and infrastructure disputes, especially in the international arena. An area of growth in his practice is energy from waste disputes.

Practice head(s):

Nick Henchie

Other key lawyers:

Scott Stiegler

Testimonials

‘This is a very business-minded and solution-oriented team; this separates them from other law firms. I have not worked such a law firm that is so good at providing solutions. They’re good team players. They also work very closely with business colleagues – they don’t proceed without input or approval from in-house legal counsel. They take quick actions and respond in time. They have a capable team, experience and expertise. I would highly recommend working with them.’

‘Nick Henchie is a fantastic lawyer and has built a great practice.’

‘Nick Henchie is a masterful tactician and has the rare ability to skilfully handle multi-faceted large scale construction disputes. Nick’s strength lies in his technical ability to dissect complex disputes and to cut through to the true issues that are at play and driving the parties’ positions. Such precision and acumen brings with it decisiveness of action. In short, he is a fearsome opponent – clients want him on their side and despair when he crops up on the other side against them.’

‘Scott Stiegler has been critical to the growth of the team in London and the profile of the practice globally. Scott is highly competent, exceptionally capable and a broad strategic thinker.’

Key clients

Panama Canal Authority

Saipem S.p.A

Hitachi Zosen Inova AG (Limited Publication)

Work highlights

  • Handling a series of arbitrations for the Panama Canal Authority.
  • Represented Saipem in the South Stream arbitration.  

Akin Gump LLP

US-based firm Akin Gump LLP has a strong presence in the domestic UK market, as well as handling high-profile international construction arbitration. Hamish Lal heads the team, and noted for his 'capability to clearly distil the most complex issues and disputes into concise and understandable terms.' He is supported in the practice by associate Josephine Kaiding who has the 'ability to quietly and confidently execute instructions to a high standard.' The team also represents oil and gas companies in complex litigation.

Practice head(s):

Hamish Lal

Other key lawyers:

Josephine Kaiding

Testimonials

‘Hamish Lal leads the team at Akin Gump and is one of the pre-eminent construction and engineering lawyers in the world. Hamish very quickly determines the key issues in disputes and works tirelessly with his clients to establish and execute the most effective and efficient dispute resolution strategy. I have always been impressed at Hamish’s capability to distil the most complex issues and disputes into concise and understandable terms. Hamish is supported by Josephine Kaiding. I have been impressed by Josephine’s desire to learn and develop her legal and professional skills and ability to quietly and confidently execute instructions to a high standard.’

‘Hamish Lal is a lawyer that any sensible person involved in contentious construction litigation would want advising them. He has prodigious energy and a superb technical knowledge of construction law.’

‘Hamish Lal is the best construction and engineering disputes lawyer that I have instructed. His understanding of the law, the complex factual and technical matters at play in construction and engineering disputes, and the commercial pressures facing clients is unmatched by his peers.’

Key clients

LUKOIL

HSM Offshore

First Abu Dhabi Bank

Work highlights

  • Acting for LUKOIL in a number of arbitrations related to EPC contracts and seated in London, Singapore, Dubai and Stockholm under the LCIA, SIAC, DIAC and SCC Institutional Rules.
  • Acted for First Abu Dhabi Bank in the Qatar Financial Centre Court of Appeal.
  • Advised a FTSE 100 company on a series of adjudications relating to defects, bonds and the final account.

Baker Botts (UK) LLP

Baker Botts (UK) LLP is particularly prominent on construction disputes for international energy clients, acting on both the contractor and developer side. Led by Stuart Jordan, the team's specialism resides in disputes concerning LNG and oil and gas. Jordan has strong experience of cross-border disputes and is noted for his work in the Middle East. Poupak Anjomshoaa provides expertise in the fields of petrochemicals and power projects.

Practice head(s):

Stuart Jordan

Other key lawyers:

Poupak Anjomshoaa

Key clients

National Petroleum Construction Company

Steelhead LNG

Jazan Energy & Development Company

Koch Industries, INC

Dar Al-Riyadh Holding

SCF Managements Services (Cyprus) LTD

Sovocomflot

Gore Street Capital Limited; and Gore Street Energy Storage Fund

Work highlights

  • Advising NPCC, one of the world’s biggest oil & gas contractors, on EPC and FEED contracts from a National Oil Company for a multibillion-dollar project offshore UAE.
  • Advising Steelhead LNG, a leading Canada-based energy & natural resources company focused on LNG project development in British Columbia.
  • Advising Jazan Energy & Development Company on its joint development of a second-generation biodiesel refinery in Saudi Arabia with the Shaikh Group of Pakistan.

BLM

BLM acts for a range of clients including consulting engineers, building surveyors, architects and design and build contractors. The team is co-lead by a group of lawyers, including Robert Stevenson, a chartered arbitrator and an accredited adjudicator with decades of construction experience. Gary Wicks has pursued claims against architects and engineers including claims for damages. Gary Thwaites has managed disputes for design consultants and structural engineers while Dileep Pisharody handles professional indemnity claims. The firm is also active across the Middle East and Africa.

Key clients

Aviva

Network Rail

RSA

Adam Architecture

Adjaye Associates

Fanshawe LLP

Browne Jacobson LLP

Browne Jacobson LLP acts for a range of clients in both the private and public sectors, including contractors, insurers and local government bodies. Tim Claremont, who heads up the practice, has strong experience of both UK and international construction issues, handling litigation and arbitration, including contentious energy matters. The team has been strengthened by the addition of legal director Jo Phillips, who joined from Hogan Lovells International LLP in late 2019.

Practice head(s):

Tim Claremont

Other key lawyers:

Jo Phillips

Key clients

Mace Limited

Centrica

Zurich Insurance plc

Yara International ASA

Golder Associates

IHI

Tokio Marine HCC

BAM

F3Group

Alpha Real Capital

11.Aspen Insurance

Work highlights

  • Assisted a major façade designer and its professional indemnity insurer in dealing with and defending two adjudication actions in relation to an ongoing £52m claim regarding HSBC’s retail banking HQ.
  • Working with Biomass Energy Renewables LLP, the purchasers of a biomass plant in Scotland, in relation to various disputes, including its right to terminate the original EPC Agreement for breach, its right to claim LADs, issues with appointing a new contractor, the risks of a formal dispute, and the passing of title to equipment.
  • Advised North Bristol NHS Trust in relation to a dispute with Vinci Construction UK Limited regarding Vinci’s design and construction of specialised laboratories facilities. Following an adjudication in which the Trust was successful, Vinci sought to overturn the adjudicator’s decision, and claimed additional time and money on various different bases.

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP handles high-value construction disputes and international arbitration, with a growing team providing the firm with a deep bench of construction expertise. Tony Dymond - 'the crown jewel of the firm's construction practice group' - leads the team; he stands out for possessing 'unsurpassed knowledge and experience of complex construction matters.' He is active on cross-border disputes in the energy and infrastructure sectors. Senior associate Robert Hoose, who has a 'superb grasp of the detail' is also an international arbitration practitioner.

Other key lawyers:

Robert Hoose

Testimonials

‘The team has a deep knowledge of industry and set-up of major infrastructure projects.’

‘They handle very large, complex arbitrations. The senior members of the team are intelligent and commercial.’

‘Tony Dymond, is the crown jewel of the firm’s construction practice group. His knowledge and experience in complex construction matters is unsurpassed, and even amongst his peers, he is highly regarded for both his advocacy and his detailed knowledge of the case.’

‘Tony Dymond is extremely driven, and he always takes the initiative to propose new ideas or next steps.’

‘Rob Hoose has a superb grasp of the detail, is practical and easy to get along with.’

Devonshires Solicitors LLP

Devonshires Solicitors LLP 'has a well-rounded contentious construction team who are all commercially sharp and client-focused.' Mark London heads up the department, and represents residential developers as well as subcontractors. He is well versed in adjudication, arbitration and litigation, acting in the TCC on a variety of disputes. He is supported by the 'intelligent, commercial and committed' Matthew Cocklin, who is noted for his work on fire safety and cladding in high rise buildings. The team was boosted in late 2019 by the return of Michael Wharfe after 12 years at Steptoe and Johnson UK LLP.

Practice head(s):

Mark London

Other key lawyers:

Matthew Cocklin; Michael Wharfe

Testimonials

‘Devonshires has a well-rounded contentious construction team who are all commercially sharp and client focused. They provide an exceptional service and will turn things around quickly, with a real attention to detail to the betterment of their client’s position. I have used them over a significant period of time and they have been able to turn the tables on significant claims from contractors who at first appeared to have a bullet-proof claim.’

‘The firm is traditionally known as being a specialist for housing associations and associated work, but their construction practice is much wider, also taking in PFI projects, infrastructure work, and high-end residential projects. They have an excellent mix of lawyers at all levels, so they can find the right team for each case.’

‘Devonshires have a wealth of experience which is invaluable to us as a client. The strengths of the organisations lies within the people and the service levels they provide.’

‘Mark London provides highly commercially focused and pragmatic advice that goes far beyond setting out purely the contractual position and instead strives to achieve the best commercial outcome for his clients. Mark is an expert in construction contracts and has the ability to quickly understand the issues, cut through the detail and get to the heart of a dispute.’

‘Matthew Cocklin is a star. He is intelligent, commercial, committed, knowledgeable and, to top it off, very easy to work with.’

‘Mark London is vastly experienced, highly commercial, but rolls his sleeves up and gets stuck in on behalf of his clients whenever needed.

‘Matthew Cocklin is an exceptional lawyer, highly cerebral, but also very commercially savvy – he gives sharp, practical advice and works extremely hard. He is a real fighter on behalf of his clients – someone you want in the trenches with you.’

Key clients

Yuanda (UK) Co. Ltd.

F3Construct Limited

Liberty Gas Company Limited

Clarion

Home Group Limited

Notting Hill Genesis

Peabody Housing Trust

London and Quadrant Housing Trust/Quadrant Construction

Flagship Housing Association

Pocket Living

Southern Housing Group

Your Housing Group

Metropolitan Thames Valley

Work highlights

  • Represented a dry-lining sub-contractor in complex, multi-party proceedings in the Technology and Construction Court in respect of a claim for contribution, breach of contract and restitutionary damages brought by the main contractor. The claim relates to alleged latent defects across a large development (circa 400 properties) in Canterbury, part of which was destroyed by a large fire in 2015.
  • Acting for Flagship Housing Association, whose contractor RFT, were prosecuted by the HSE in relation to a fall from height by a roofing operative. The fall occurred in September 2016 at a property owned by Flagship HA.
  • Advising Yuanda on numerous high profile projects in London and was recently involved in a landmark judgment on the interpretation of the ABI Model Form bond which is an important form of security used as an industry standard for many high-profile projects.

Fladgate LLP

Fladgate LLP advises clients across numerous sectors such as hotels and leisure, renewable energy and oil and gas. The firm acts for a range contractors in domestic and international adjudications and arbitrations. David Weare, who leads the team, is a 'heavyweight construction practitioner', handling both litigation and arbitration and taking cases to the  High Court and Court of Appeal. He is supported by two recent additions to the firm, Olivia Bateman  and Elliot Lewis, who joined from Squire Patton Boggs and Brecher LLP respectively. Digby Hebbard is also noted for his knowledge of healthcare and energy disputes.

Practice head(s):

David Weare

Testimonials

‘The team is hugely dedicated and has a real understanding of the client’s commercial imperatives, as well as a detailed grasp of the technical issues. They have worked on some of the most high-profile and important cases in the construction field in recent years, which is testament to their strength in depth, and their impressive handling of difficult and complex cases.’

‘David Weare is hugely experienced and a real heavyweight construction practitioner. His commercial judgement and strategic instincts are second to none, and he has a deep understanding of the law in this field. He is someone you really want on your side in a difficult battle.’

‘Digby Hebbard is a really impressive lawyer with an in-depth understanding of the construction industry and a highly effective approach to complex and heavy litigation.’

Key clients

Equitix

Base Contracts Limited

West Midlands Trains

Science Museum Group

National Portrait Gallery

Michael J Lonsdale Limited

Vivalda Limited

Somerset House

Bennett Construction

BW Interiors Ltd

Cleveland Cable Company

Linklaters LLP

LJJ Limited

Innisfree

Van Oord

CIMC MBS Ltd

CIMC Developments Ltd

Nooter Erikson

Work highlights

  • Acted for Michael J Lonsdale Ltd in a Supreme Court case concerning the rights of insolvent companies to refer disputes arising under construction contracts to adjudication.
  • Acted for CIMC in High Court and Court of Appeal proceedings which raised the issue of whether the payment provisions of a construction contract complied with the Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 (as amended).

Hamlins LLP

Hamlins LLP has a broad contentious construction practice, acting on a wide array of disputes including claims for delay, loss and expense, claims for negligent design or workmanship and project overspends. Amanda Burge leads the department; she is praised for her 'very good understanding of the law and the needs of her clients.' Alongside her traditional construction and engineering experience, she has advised on IT and software aspects of construction projects and their implications for disputes. She is supported by Sarah Finch who resolves disputes through adjudications, especially involving delay claims. Senior associate Laura Daly is active on a range of construction disputes in multiple sectors.

Practice head(s):

Amanda Burge

Other key lawyers:

Sarah Finch; Laura Daly

Testimonials

‘The team understands the developer side of the industry particularly well and is well placed to deal with the needs of that side of the industry.’

‘The team always has high quality work, drawn from interesting and high-profile projects. They are focused on using their experience to get a good result for the client with the minimum of fuss.’

‘The team at Hamlins provides a genuinely personal service to clients; there is no feel of nameless lawyers in a big team who have no real idea who the clients are and how to meet their needs. The team is particularly dedicated to serving its clients’ needs – it is very responsive and proactive and offers a good breadth of experience.’

‘Amanda Burge came in when our transaction became contentious. She grasped the problem immediately and put a plan in place to resolve the matter. Tried to avoid going to court to be resolved and pursued a settlement strategy in our favour, which was ultimately successful and cost-effective.’

‘Amanda Burge is a delightful person to deal with, who has a very good understanding of the law and the needs of her clients.’

Key clients

India Buildings Development Limited

The William Pears Group

Palace Capital

Dobler Metallbau GmbH

Volker Fitzpatrick

Structadene

Work highlights

  • Acting on behalf of a large development company in respect of their role in the development of a several hundred thousand square foot building in the UK; assisting with various disputes.
  • Acting in a trade contract dispute against a large manufacturer in relation to provision of naked lift carts.
  • Acting on behalf of a football club in a claim against contractors for a substandard design and installation of a 3G football pitch.

Jones Day

Jones Day's practice offers 'specialist expertise and understanding of the construction sector.' The team is headed up by James Pickavance, who joined from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP in October 2019. He is noted as a 'standout partner', an expert on international construction arbitration, having acted for contractors, developers and consultants. The 'extremely impressive' John J Crowley is noted for his work in the energy and infrastructure sectors. The London team are also able draw on the expertise of the wider firm's top-tier US practice.

Practice head(s):

James Pickavance

Other key lawyers:

John J Crowley

Testimonials

‘As well as boasting specialist expertise and understanding of the construction sector, Jones Day’s broad experience in a range of fields – including private equity, finance, cross-border, and intellectual property – makes its construction team uniquely placed to provide developer and commercial clients with bespoke and focused advice and litigation representation that takes account of the full picture of challenges faced by the client.’

‘The London office is one of the key offices in which the firm focuses its international construction disputes practice. The team has access to the world’s leading-edge projects which means their knowledge is relevant and current. The London team is very much an international team. It seems to be completely connected with the construction, energy and infrastructure teams elsewhere and in our experience puts forward the best team is put forward to assist, rather than a team limited by the capabilities of one office.’

‘The team has strengths in depth from juniors to partners and across a very wide range of specialisms. They produce extremely high quality work (the best I have come across) and their office coverage is truly global.’

‘I’ve worked closely with John J Crowley who is extremely impressive and a rising star. He is exceptionally thorough and rigorous in his analysis of the client’s legal and commercial position, and leaves no stone unturned. He has considerable experience in acting for developer clients in technically complex and difficult cladding claims. He brings dedication, great intelligence, and excellent industry understanding to the task.’ 

‘James Pickavance is the stand out partner and leads the team in London. We have dealt with him for a number of years and in our view is one of the best construction solicitors in the market. He is well known in the construction legal market.’

Key clients

Omega Engineering LLC

Windoor AS

Work highlights

  • Representing US engineering company Omega and its CEO in a $100m claim against the Republic of Panama arising under the US-Panama BIT.
  • Representing Windoor, an Estonian architecture and construction company, in an ICSID claim against the Republic of Kazakhstan, for Kazakhstan’s expropriation of its investment.

Osborne Clarke LLP

Osborne Clarke LLP's contentious construction practice handles key mandates for government bodies, universities and project developers. Construction and engineering disputes and risk head Rob Horne acts as a Chartered Arbitrator and adjudicator on several UK and international panels, and has decades of experience of advising on complex contentious construction and infrastructure matters. Daniel Cashmore is another key member of the team; he resolves construction and engineering disputes via mediation, adjudication and arbitration, and was recently promoted to the partnership.

Practice head(s):

Rob Horne

Other key lawyers:

Daniel Cashmore

Testimonials

‘We have a strong business partnership with the firm – they have an excellent understanding of our business, as well as good industry knowledge.’

Key clients

Midas Construction Limited

M&G Real Estate

Northacre Renewable Energy Limited

NordLB

Civitas Living

Gazeley

Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advising Midas on a claim for £10m arising out of construction of a care home.
  • Acting for Babcock Marine (Clyde) Limited in relation to works taking place at a major military naval base.

Simmons & Simmons

Simmons & Simmons has a 'very capable team of all levels of experience, with strong inter-office links.' At the helm is Emily Monastiriotis, a 'vastly experienced practitioner' who is an expert on cladding, a particular area of focus in the wake of the Grenfell disaster. James Pollock, works with construction professionals and brokers, taking disputes to the High Court, while the 'very sharp and focused' Jonathan Spencer, who was promoted to partner last year, has experience of both domestic and international disputes.

Practice head(s):

Emily Monastiriotis

Other key lawyers:

James Pollock; Jonathan Spencer

Testimonials

‘A very capable team of all levels of experience, with strong inter-office links, means that cases are well resourced, irrespective of the office from which they are operating. Diligent and comprehensive advice provided and a real focus on ensuring that clients’ needs are met.’

‘They do high-end complex cases, are a niche team, with a big focus on cladding post-Grenfell.’

‘Jonathan Spencer is a very sharp, focused partner – a pleasure to work with. Organises his team(s) well.’

‘Emily Monastiriotis is a vastly experienced practitioner – her reputation speaks for itself.’

Key clients

Bouygues Energies & Services Ireland Limited (BYES)

Willmott Dixon

Work highlights

  • Defending a global architect in relation to a claim concerning the extension and refurbishment of a major international school in Qatar. The matter successfully settled at a mediation in Doha in February 2019.
  • Defending an engineer in a multi-party multimillion-pound complex matter involving the design and construction of a substantial development in London. The matter successfully resolved at a multi-party mediation in March 2019.
  • Representing a core participant (construction consultant) in the Grenfell Tower Public Inquiry.

Burges Salmon LLP

Burges Salmon LLP's 'highly commercial' and 'creative' team deals with a range of contentious matters for energy, transport and infrastructure clients. Steven James leads the team and has experience on major energy disputes while William Gard is head of the practice's arbitration and adjudication offering. Marcus Harling is also noted for his long-term expertise. Richard Adams possesses 'excellent client skills' and has acted on a range of infrastructure disputes.

Practice head(s):

Steven James

Testimonials

‘They are practice-oriented and scientifically substantiated, and unlike other law firms they dare to give you unpleasant answers or legal opinions if necessary.’

‘Each member punches above their weight. You get the impression that everyone knows exactly what they are doing.’

‘Best team in the business; creative in trying to solve problems rather than being prescriptive. Highly commercial which is a rare commodity with lawyers.’

‘Richard Adams has excellent client skills and is a pleasure to work with.’

‘Richard Adams has a key ability to absorb the technical facts and opinions and present them well in a legal framework.’

Key clients

Costain

Highways England

Affinity Water

Crown Commercial Service

Transport for London

AEG

Serco/Abellio

National Trust

HSBC

Engie

DAC Beachcroft LLP

DAC Beachcroft LLP acts for a range of clients including contractors and housebuilders. Mark Roach leads the offering and acts on a variety of contentious matters, covering adjudication and litigation. He has also acted on several defects claims. Michael Blackburne has acted on cladding cases and has a general expertise in domestic and international disputes in the natural resources, infrastructure and energy sphere.

Practice head(s):

Mark Roach

Other key lawyers:

Michael Blackburne

Work highlights

  • Representing Cleveland Cable Company in relation to a dispute over the supply of electrical cables to a mechanical and electrical contractor.

Forsters LLP

Forsters LLP acts on a variety of contentious construction matters relating to defects, loss and expense and delay. Andrew Parker is the key contact at the practice; he handles a range of disputes, including delay and defects claims caused by poor workmanship and negligent design.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Parker

Goodman Derrick LLP

Goodman Derrick LLP's contentious construction practitioners are active on adjudications, litigation and ICC arbitrations, providing the full range of dispute resolution services to clients. In recent years the firm has looked to increase it focus on international arbitration by building its links with firms in jurisdictions including Germany, where it has connections with Munich-based firm TopJus. Richard Bailey is noted for his experience in multi-party litigation in the TCC.

Practice head(s):

Richard Bailey

Other key lawyers:

Kieran Fano; Nick Cook

Key clients

Essex Services Group Limited

Modus Workspace Futures

Alfa Lavell

BN Rendering

West Country Renovations Limited

Gowling WLG

Gowling WLG acts for developers, contractors and institutional purchasers/investors across a multitude of sectors including retail, leisure, hotels and energy. The practice is jointly led from Birmingham by Richard Green and Mike O’Shea. Sue Ryan heads up the London office and is an expert in construction and engineering issues and has represented professionals and employers in multi-party disputes.

Practice head(s):

Richard Green; Mike O’Shea

Other key lawyers:

Sue Ryan

Key clients

Wates

The National Farmers Union Mutual Insurance Society

Royal London Mutual Insurance Society

AXA

Canada Life

BAE Systems Pension Funds (Trustees) Limited

Work highlights

  • Represented BAE Systems Pension Funds Trustees Limited in a multi-party action in the TCC arising out of the defective design and construction of a 10,000m2 High Bay Warehouse in Cheshire which has a defective slab and is suffering from differential settlement.

Haynes and Boone CDG, LLP

US firm Haynes and Boone CDG, LLP is prominent in the offshore energy and construction field, primarily resolving disputes through international arbitration. Melanie Willems and William Cecil jointly lead the team. Willems heads up the firm's international arbitration group but is also experienced in litigation and expert determination; she is active on matters across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Markus Esly focuses on infrastructure and energy disputes and is noted for his broad dispute resolution experience.

Practice head(s):

Melanie Willems; William Cecil

Other key lawyers:

Markus Esly

Mishcon de Reya LLP

Mishcon de Reya LLP's team deftly handles 'complex and difficult cases', for a client base of developers, property investors and funders. The highly regarded Richard Gerstein leads the team, and is noted for being one of the 'big-hitting partners in the real estate and construction space.' He has many years of experience handling cases in the TCC, as well as arbitration and adjudication proceedings.

Practice head(s):

Richard Gerstein

Testimonials

‘This team handles a large number of complex and difficult cases, many of them multi-party, and has good relationships with many in-house heads of legal. The team brings a very high level of legal knowledge and has good people at all levels, so they have the right people doing the right job. The success of the team is very much linked with the skills of Richard Gerstein, who heads the team.’

‘Richard Gerstein is a real industry leader and very much one of the big-hitting partners in the real estate and construction space. He has a very good legal mind and does not shy away from expressing his views. That said, he takes advice and makes astute tactical decisions. He has a good relationship with clients built on trust and years of good service.’

‘Richard Gerstein is seamless in approach, and always has an eye for the commercial outcome.’

Key clients

Delancey, Qatari Diar, APG and Oxford Properties

Capital & Counties Properties PLC (Capco)

Ocubis

The Office Group

Fizzy Living

Mears Group PLC

Brookfield

AEW

Almacantar

City Grove

Accor (Accor Hotels)

Work highlights

  • Acted for housing maintenance provider Mears Limited in their dispute in the Technology and Construction Court with Metropolitan Housing Trust arising out of the latter’s wrongful termination of a contract for the maintenance of the defendant’s housing stock.
  • Continue to act for housing and social care provider, Mears Group PLC, in the Technology and Construction Court and the Court of Appeal against Costplan and two other companies. Mears entered into an agreement for lease of two high rise buildings in a student housing scheme in Plymouth where consequently, the rooms sizes were substantially smaller than which Mears had contracted to build to.

Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP

The contentious construction offering at US disputes heavyweight Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP is led by James Bremen who has acted for owners, developers, contractors, consultants and lenders during more than two decades of practice. His scope of work has an international focus, especially in the Middle East and Southeast Asia, with notable experience representing the State of Qatar and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in construction disputes. Anthony Sinclair is another key figure in the team; he handles international construction arbitration matters across a number of sectors such as infrastructure and mining.

Practice head(s):

James Bremen

Key clients

Qatar Petroleum

Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development

Al Jaber Group

SOCAR Turkey

Petronas

Qatar Solar Technologies

Tenaga Nasional Berhad (“TNB”)

Qatar Railways Company

Dragon Oil

Capital Market Authority of Saudi Arabia

Saudi Comedat

TAQA

Work highlights

  • Advising the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development in relation to two ICC arbitrations concerning the design and construction of the Sidra Hospital in Doha, Qatar.

RPC

RPC has a strong focus on acting for architects involved in construction disputes, and also works with a range of insurers, contractors and other construction professionals. The team is led by Alan Stone in London and Ben Goodier in Bristol. Recent work of note has included advising a number of clients on cladding issues relating to the Grenfell fire. Tom Green was promoted to partner in 2020; he regularly works alongside Stone on major disputes.

Practice head(s):

Alan Stone; Ben Goodier

Other key lawyers:

Tom Green

Key clients

Studio E Architects

NHBC

Clague Architects

CBRE

Vinci

Gleeds

White Ink Architects Limited

Broadway Malyan Limited

Urban Innovations Limited

EPR Architects Limited

Ridge & Partners

NMCM

Work highlights

  • Advising Studio E Architects Limited, the architect appointed in relation to the refurbishment works at Grenfell Tower, in relation to potential systemic cladding related issues.
  • Advising a number of clients such as Studio E, Urban Innovations, BPD, White Ink and others on cladding issues related to the Grenfell case.
  • Secured a positive commercial settlement for Clague Architects, which designed a large housing development, consisting of apartments and town houses constructed from a timber frame design, that suffered fire damage.

Sharpe Pritchard LLP

Sharpe Pritchard LLP's contentious construction team have 'enormous specialist expertise in local government disputes' - the firm is regarded as a go-to name for public sector clients requiring advice on contentious matters. The practice is led by the 'exceptionally client-friendlyJustin Mendelle, an adjudication specialist who also has impressive credentials on the non-contentious side. David Owens, who joined from Clyde & Co LLP in early 2019, has a strong record of work on disputes in the health and IT sectors, as well as work on PFI/PPP disputes. Since 2016 the firm has operated a dedicated stand-alone adjudication unit which focuses solely on construction disputes.

Practice head(s):

Justin Mendelle

Other key lawyers:

David Owens

Testimonials

‘Extremely collaborative team willing to deal with the simplest issue to the most complex. Always made to feel part of a whole team. A very holistic approach to big projects and always on hand for help and advice. Great at reaching strategic aims by understanding our values and visions. Great bespoke advice.’

‘Excellent construction law and contract knowledge; sound practical advice along with astute tactical and strategic advice for clients.’

‘Justin Mendelle has been seen to consistently provide sound legal, practical, cost-effective and appropriate strategic advice.’

‘An excellent, client responsive PFI team headed up by David Owens and Justin Mendelle.’

Key clients

Buckinghamshire County Council

West Sussex County Council

Bilby PLC

Milton Keynes Council

Kings College London

Imperial College

London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham

Lewisham Homes

Cornwall County Council

Derbyshire County Council

Work highlights

  • Advising a county council in its claims against a construction contractor and operator of its energy from waste plant, in relation to claims that the operator is not properly calculating the income share from the plant.
  • Acting for a major London hospital trust in disputes under its PFI construction and maintenance agreement with the SPV Project Co, and through them, the facilities management contractor.
  • Acting for a central London University in relation to a number of issues arising under an office refurbishment construction contract, including one  which relates to a £2m asbestos claim.

Taylor Wessing LLP

Taylor Wessing LLP's practice has a record of work on multi-party TCC claims, arbitration proceedings and adjudications. Matthew Jones leads the team and has over two decades of experienced in the field. Jonathan Hutt is notable in the infrastructure and energy sectors on a range of construction and engineering disputes. Senior counsel Natalie Pilagos works with energy, retail and infrastructure clients on disputes including defects claims.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Jones

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Hutt; Natalie Pilagos

Testimonials

‘I like Taylor Wessing’s helpful, proactive and commercial approach to matters.’

‘The team shows high competence, a great attitude to clients and professionalism.’

‘Jonathan Hutt is always a pleasure to deal with.’

Key clients

Tritax Big Box REIT

Natwest

Barclays Bank

Burntisland Fabrications

Imagile Group

J&A Young (Leicester) Ltd (Jayplas)

InfraRed Capital Partners

Buxton Building Contractors

R&F Properties

Chesington Investments

Watson Farley & Williams LLP

Watson Farley & Williams LLP's practice is led by Rebecca Williams, who 'gives everything for her clients in each and every case.' She is experienced in all forms of dispute resolution including litigation, domestic and international arbitration as well as adjudication. The petrochemical and energy sectors are key areas of focus for her practice. The team has been boosted by the 2019 addition of Barry Hembling, who joined from Fladgate LLP and works with clients in the hotel, energy, sports and leisure sectors.

Practice head(s):

Rebecca Williams

Testimonials

‘The team are always professional, supportive and offer good, to the point advice. In contentious and legally challenging situations they are able to step in and provide the required clarity.’

‘A small and effective team; lots of continuity and a dogged determination to find a solution for their clients.’

‘The WFW construction team is unique because of the service it provides with the client and professional care it delivers.’

‘Rebecca Williams gives everything for her clients in each and every case. She is a real winner, and leads with confidence and tenacity a large team, who all support her completely. That support and loyalty is a real testament to her. Rebecca has great energy and enthusiasm for each case, which drives the team.’

‘Barry Hembling is particularly well organised, Reliable, knowledgeable and always willing to analyse issues in detail.’

‘Mark McAllister-Jones is highly able and experienced. He is extremely well-liked by clients and peers, thoroughly charming and a good leader. He is always calm under pressure and finds detailed, practical solutions for his clients. ‘

Key clients

Equinor

Bester Generacion

Zaha Hadid Architects

Sonnedix

Ropemaker Properties

PTT

Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners

Colas

Bondcare Care Homes

Sustainable Development Capital

The Gemdale Group Ltd.

Work highlights

  • Represented Bester Generacion UK Ltd in the 2019 case of PBS v Bester, the first occasion in which the English court refused to enforce an adjudication award on the grounds that the award had been obtained by fraud which could not have been evidenced at the time of the adjudication itself and which could only have been evidenced in the subsequent enforcement proceedings (a decision which was upheld by the Court of Appeal).
  • Acted for Bester in the principal Technology and Construction Court proceedings, brought by PBS Energo, which concerned a multimillion-pound termination dispute.
  • Acted for The Gemdale Group Ltd in a payment dispute with an employer under a JCT 2016 design and build contract for a mixed commercial and residential development in Manchester.

Wikborg Rein

Norwegian firm Wikborg Rein has an international English law practice in London, which covers contentious construction matters led by Mike Stewart, who handles disputes relating to energy and infrastructure projects, particularly in the Middle East. The firm's global practice and undertakes international arbitration to resolve construction disputes. Shawn Kirby is also recommended; he is dual-qualified as an English solicitor and as a barrister and solicitor in New Zealand.

Practice head(s):

Mike Stewart

Key clients

Veolia

Elkem ASA

Yara International ASA

Kvaerner

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP's team act in contractor and employer disputes in the TCC and in arbitration and adjudication proceedings. Simon Rowland and Hannah Cane jointly lead the team. Rowland heads up the national team from Newcastle, while the London-based Cane provides expertise in the defence of claims made against construction professionals. She is also a specialist in construction insurance matters. Managing associate Emily Leonard has an 'encyclopaedic knowledge' and has represented developers, funders, contractors and insurers.

Practice head(s):

Simon Rowland; Hannah Cane

Other key lawyers:

Emily Leonard

Testimonials

‘Womble Bond Dickinson are have an impressive team of lawyers that are practical, thorough and client friendly. Their USP is that they are better value than many of their better known counterparts specialising in international arbitration. Despite being better value, WBD can go toe to toe with their more expensive counterparts.’

‘The team are all smart and understand what it is their clients need – whether lay clients or insurers. I have worked with the team on a variety of matters, including large adjudications and litigation, both for claimants and defendants.’

‘Emily Leonard is a very able lawyer, who is keen to get the ball rolling so that the real issues in the case can be quickly identified.’

‘Emily Leonard is knowledgeable and always has an encyclopaedic knowledge of the case we’re working on. She – like the rest of the team – is extremely easy to work with, which in my experience always brings out the best in the team and often translates into a better result for the client.’

Key clients

Venator Materials UK Limited

South Tees Site Company Ltd

Synthomer Plc

Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution

Huntsman Group

Venator P&A France SA

Centrica