Commercial litigation: Liverpool in North West

Brabners LLP

Brabners LLP is adept at handling mainstream commercial litigation and finance, recoveries and enforcement litigation particularly in relation to sport and media. Areas of expertise include partnership, director and shareholder disputes, professional negligence claims, warranty claims, defamation, insolvency, real estate dispute resolution, Judicial Review, freezing injunctions and charity litigation. Paul Lunt heads the team. Phil Sheard joined as partner from Hill Dickinson LLP along with associate James Stephenson.

Practice head(s):

Paul Lunt

Other key lawyers:

Phil Sheard; James Stephenson; Philip Steel; Jacqui Lloyd; Andrew McGregor; Simon Morris


‘Phil Sheard is very proactive, responsive and knowledgeable, acts very fast and is easy to deal with’.

‘The team are knowledgeable and easy to work with’.

‘Phil Sheard is always available to assist, discuss and provide advice’.

‘Phil Steele offers sensible and very timely advice. He makes time for us, knows our business well and is very supportive. He is especially good in times of crisis.’

‘Paul Lunt and Phil Steele are the go-to lawyers in commercial dispute matters. The are dynamic and direct in their approach, often enabling issues to be resolved or settled before proceedings have to be issued.’

Key clients

Bibby Factors Northwest Limited (Bibby)

Kingsway Asset Finance Limited

4Syte Funding Limited

Nichols PLC (brands include Vimto)

Arnold Clark Finance Limited

United Utilities

Work highlights

  • Defended England cricketer Ben Stoke, against charges of affray arising from a fight in Bristol in September 2017 and ongoing related matters.
  • Acting for Cellular Services Limited on a breach of contract claim arising out of capital investment provided for the purchase and restoration/repair of second hand motor vehicles which has involved a successful application for interim injunctive relief.
  • Acting for promising young footballer in a £30m claim brought against an opponent who caused him a career-ending injury in a negligent challenge.
  • Acting for Bibby Factors following the assignment of invoices to it by AMP in the sum of £262,606 in respect of the supply of TK Maxx Carrier bags and gift sacks for its UK and European stores.
  • Acting on behalf of a firm of solicitors who had its offer of professional indemnity insurance coverage for 2018/19 (wrongfully and unlawfully) withdrawn by its prospective insurer two working days before the policy was due to take effect.

DLA Piper

DLA Piper UK LLP represents clients in multi-jurisdictional cases, High Court proceedings and international arbitration. Areas of expertise include technology disputes, outsourcing disputes, professional negligence, corporate and M&A transactional disputes, pensions disputes, data breach issues and contractual disputes. It also advises on data breaches, cybersecurity, regulatory matters and GDPR. The team is now headed by legal director Christina Sharma and Manchester-based Stewart Plant , after former team head Mark Goodwin and legal director Catherine Radcliffe left the firm to form litigation boutique Fortuna Business Litigation.

Practice head(s):

Stewart Plant; Christina Sharma

Other key lawyers:

Hannah Catterall; Emma Charnock; John Gollaglee; Ben Miller

Key clients

Information Commissioner Office

Lonrho Limited


Liverpool Football Club

United Utilities

Liverpool City Council

International Cotton Association


Westminster City Council

Delta Airlines

Lloyds Banking Group

Work highlights

  • Freezing order and court appointed receiver order obtained to assist Lonrho in enforcing its $13m judgment.
  • Advising the ICO in relation to the investigation into the activities of Cambridge Analytica, GSR and Facebook.
  • Carrying out investigations in to the transfer of academy players to and/or from Premier League clubs.
  • Regularly advises the ICA Tribunals on discreet legal issues and English law principles.


DWF is adept at handling contractual and company disputes including reach of warranty disputes, indemnity claims and shareholder and partnership disputes. Other areas of expertise include professional negligence, Judicial Review, competition, directors' disqualification, contentious probate, arbitration, procurement litigation and injunctions. Key client sectors include telecoms, utilities and energy, public sector, food and drink, retail and education. Andrew Whalley, Graham Dagnall and Matthew Stoll head the team, and Whalley has been leading the firm's work for O2/Telefonica on a £300m claim against Ofcom. Director Chris King and senior associates Helen Otty and Lyndsay Crowder-Barton are also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Whalley; Graham Dagnall; Matthew Stoll

Key clients

Telefonica UK Limited (O2)

Burton’s Foods Limited

Stage Capital (formerly NBGI)

Crown Paints Limited

giffgaff Limited

DAS Legal Expenses Insurance Company Limited

Liverpool John Moores University

Chess ICT Limited

Lloyds Banking Group

Liverpool City Council

Work highlights

  • Acting for O2 in its claim for restitution of annual licence fees paid to Ofcom in respect of wireless telegraphy licences. Similar claims have also been brought by the other mobile network operators against Ofcom with a combined claim value of more than £300m.
  • Advised Liverpool City Council on complex breach of contract claim relating to waste services contract for the Liverpool city region.
  • Advised on complex dispute concerning deferred consideration/adjustment to purchase price dispute under SPA.
  • Advised Burton’s Foods Limited on complex nuisance claim against developer of new housing estate.

Hill Dickinson LLP

Hill Dickinson LLP handles shareholder and partnership disputes, professional negligence claims, breach of contract claims, international arbitration, breach of confidence and misuse of confidential information claims and tax disputes. Other areas of expertise include multi-jurisdictional disputes, mis-selling claims against financial institutions, IP disputes, defamation, group litigation, judicial reviews, procurement claims and product liability claims. Fiona Parry  and Manchester-based Geraldine Ryan head the team. Newly promoted legal director Daniel Keating is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Fiona Parry; Geraldine Ryan

Other key lawyers:

Daniel Keating


What makes this team unique is their cohesion’.

They operate extremely well as a unit and whilst they fight incredibly hard for their clients in what is normally very complex litigation, they are also approachable, personable and easy to work with’.

Paul Walsh is an exceptionally talented lawyer, he has a fantastic breadth of knowledge and experience, a keen intellect and an impressive ability to keep a cool head whilst working under immense pressure’.

Paul Twigg and Jon Scally are also highly recommended; both are very bright, hard-working and personable individuals who go the extra mile to get the right result for their clients’.

Key clients

Bourne Leisure

Stobart Group

Agilent Technologies LDA UK Limited

Direct Accident Management Limited

FS Commercial Limited

Hazedrive Limited

Poundland Limited

Coffee Republic Retail Limited

Ged Lynch-Smith (Lloyds Autobody)

Cheshire East Borough Council

MJ Quinn

Work highlights

  • Advised Direct Accident Management Limited on claim for injunctive relief/search order arising from claim for misuse of confidential information.
  • Advised on minority shareholder unfair prejudice dispute and partnership dispute.
  • Advised Poundland Limited on claim for damages in excess of £5m for breaches of competition law.
  • Advised F S Commercial Limited on appeal in the First Tier Tax Tribunal against determinations in respect of allegedly underpaid PAYE and NICs.
  • Advised Agilent Technologies LDA UK Limited on £26m claim for damages for breach of contract.


Bermans focuses on the banking, invoice and asset finance, property and construction, IP, media, insurance, professional services, employment, environmental, education, leisure, sport, entertainment, publishing, consumer credit and tax sectors. Areas of expertise include contractual disputes such as shareholder, partnership and franchisor issues, and property, tax and licensed leisure litigation. The firm has a unique commercial dispute resolution product for SMEs called Escalate which it launched with Moore Blatch LLP and accountants PKF Littlejohn, which works on a no win, no fee basis. Nick Harvey heads the team. Former Premier League footballer Gareth Farrelly joined as solicitor from Peters & Peters Solicitors LLP.

Practice head(s):

Nick Harvey

Other key lawyers:

Gareth Farrelly; Jonathan Berkson; Michael Smeaton; Andrew Koffman

Work highlights

  • Advised a firm of chartered accountants in the defence of a professional negligence claim for up to £5m which settled following mediation.
  • Represented a national telecommunications provider in defence of a claim valued at £750,000 relating to the design and build of a high-profile broadband network
  • Acting for a national textiles company in proceedings under the Communications Act against two major telecommunications and mobile network providers

Weightmans LLP

Weightmans LLP is particularly focused on commercial contract disputes. The IP sector is also a key focus where the team advises on copyright infringement, trade mark infringement and passing off as well as other general brand and reputation protection work. Another key sector is education where the team advises on contentious matters for universities. the firm also advises clients in the manufacturing industry. Andrew Roberts and Sarah Conroy head the team. Michelle Connor joined as associate from DLA Piper UK LLP and James Walsh joined as solicitor from Aaron & Partners LLP.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Roberts; Sarah Conroy

Other key lawyers:

Michelle Connor; James Walsh

Key clients

Peel Ports Limited

Sovini Group

Equality & Human Rights Commission

University of Wolverhampton

The Cabinet Office

Thomas Hardie Commercials

Liverpool Hope University

BMP Europe Limited

Elmgrove Foods Limited

Kirkby (Tyres) Limited

Newcastle University

Middlesex University

Ventcroft Limited

School Letting Solutions

All About Food Limited

Bangor University

Best Storage Limited

Work highlights

  • A claim was brought against the university in respect of their decision in March 2017 to reject an a appeal against the outcome of a FTP panel of 31 January 2017 that excluded a student for failing to disclose his spent convictions on his application.


DTM Legal LLP handles disputes relating to contracts, finance, IP, construction and procurement often with cross-border elements. Other areas of expertise include, negotiation, mediation, expert determination, other forms of ADR, adjudication, arbitration and High Court proceedings. The 'commercially minded' and 'exceptionally responsive'  Jim Morris, who is based in Chester and Liverpool, heads the team.

Practice head(s):

Jim Morris

Other key lawyers:

Anna Duffy; Kate Roberts; Richard Harris


‘A very strong team in construction litigation with a great deal of experience throughout the sector.’

‘An exceptional, diligent, approachable and knowledgeable team that really gets to know the client. They are highly professional and very focused providing expert, accurate and pragmatic advice in a straightforward manner. They are proactive and have a can-do attitude that is first rate.

‘Jim Morris is a commercially minded, client-facing lawyer who works hard to get a good result.’

‘Jim Morris is exceptionally responsive, very reliable and thorough. His expertise and attention to detail is second to none and he gives excellent quick, practical and commercial advice.’

Key clients

The Atmore Group

Funding Circle Limited

Rotex Europe Limited (part of Hillenbrand Group listed on NYSE)

Foundation For Art and Creative Technology t/a FACT

CRS Plant Ltd

J R Pickstock Ltd

J Ross Developments Limited

Elements (Europe) Limited

Begbies Traynor

Edge Recovery

Clancy Consulting Limited


Zodeq Limited

Pen-Y-Bryn EMI Ltd

Upex  Employment Limited

Global Baggage Solutions

Upex Hotel Services Limited

Carpenter Build Ltd

Work highlights

  • Representing Rotex Europe Limited against a £38m claim brought by a Saudi Arabian company in the Technology and Construction Court in London.
  • Represented Johann Van Den Noort in a case involving cross-border patents against Global Flood Defence Systems.
  • Repeat instructions for Funding Circle Limited in high value and complex collections and recoveries.
  • Acted for a client in regards to a dispute in respect of property investment.
  • Represented a client in his claim for the recovery of his possessions which were being unlawfully held by the defendant following the forfeiture of a lease.