Beale & Co > London, England > Firm Profile

Beale & Co

Insurance > Professional negligence Tier 2

Beale & Co is a specialist professional negligence boutique, with one of the largest dedicated teams in the UK. The firm receives regular instructions from numerous major professional indemnity insurers, including Aviva, Chubb, and RSA, among others. Peter Sewell is the sole legal advisor to the Lloyd’s Market Association’s International Professional Liability Business Panel, while Antony Smith has an impressive construction related record internationally. Sheena Sood has almost thirty years of diverse experience in the construction sector. Finally, Ross Baker, Martin Jensen, and Jason McNerlin are all impressive practitioners in construction professional negligence.

Practice head(s):

Peter Sewell; Antony Smith; Sheena Sood; Ross Baker; Martin Jensen; Jason McNerlin

Other key lawyers:

Michael Salau; Eileen Pathiraja; Keith Lonsdale; Nathan Modelll; Ian Masser


‘Beale & Co have a very collaborative approach to involving counsel in their cases. They are hard-working and responsive, and it is clear that their young lawyers are well-supported and trained. Dealing with a whole team that can ‘see’ the endgame and doggedly keep looking for answers is a pleasure.’

‘Beale & Co are tough litigators. They leave no stone unturned in achieving the best result for the client. Their legal analysis is second to none. They have particular expertise on the construction side.’

‘In general terms, what strikes the eye in relation to Beale & Co is that every fee earner in the department – from partner to associate – is prepared to give their utmost to seek to secure the best outcome for the client. Their passion and commitment is second to none.’

‘Extensive understanding of the construction industry and a long history of acting for professional consultants. Understand the challenges from a consultant’s perspective. Provision of an in-house disputes service for both contentious and non-contentious work. Always willing to go above and beyond the day to day with training and broader collaborative opportunities.’

‘Their advice is considered and tailored – easy to say yes to. Both work well with our wider business and comes up with creative/out of the box solutions.’

‘Beale & Co is an excellent practice that stands out in the insurance (professional negligence) landscape. What sets them apart is their unwavering commitment to excellence, and their ability consistently to deliver outstanding results. Clients can have full confidence that Beale & Co will navigate any complex legal challenges.’

‘Ross Baker is a standout insurance solicitor who has great knowledge and expertise, and decades of experience in the area. Ross’s advice is always first-rate, no matter how urgent or complex the problem that his client faces. As proactive as they come, Ross’s approach to client care is to be admired.’

‘Incisive and responsive team, whom I find work very well with counsel in a collaborative way.’

Key clients

Aviva Insurance UK Ltd

RSA Insurance Group

Arup Group Ltd

Jacobs UK Limited

AmTrust Europe

Hardy Underwriting Asia Pte Ltd (CNA Hardy)

Kier Group

Chubb Insurance

Atkins Limited

Channel Syndicate

Hamilton Syndicate

Work highlights

Employment > Health and safety Tier 3

The ‘very experienced’ team at Beale & Co is co-headed by Sheena Sood and Joanna Lewis, who is noted for her ‘real determination to get the best result for the client’. As a construction boutique, the firm is particularly adept in handling complex construction and infrastructure projects in particular, recently having been more involved with related cladding and fire safety cases. Alongside its contentious practice, the team regularly advises its corporate client list on regulatory compliance.

Practice head(s):

Sheena Sood; Joanna Lewis

Other key lawyers:

Zita Mansi; Nathan Modell; Michael O’Brien


‘It is uniquely placed to deal with disputes with a high-degree of technical complexity, giving it an edge in health and safety cases. They are highly knowledgeable and very experienced in managing large and complex litigation as well as health and safety investigations.’

‘Joanna Lewis has all the dedication, attention-to-detail, and absolute mastery of the evidence that is required in this demanding field. She is always completely on top of the evidence, understands the technical issues inside-out and has a real determination to get the best result for the client. She truly cares. The service she provides is second-to-none.’

‘The team has excellent industry knowledge, in-particular the interface between construction & engineering, HSE, regulatory and personal injury type matters.’

‘Joanna Lewis knows her stuff and provides clear, straightforward advice. She clearly has her finger on the pulse in relation to industry trends and developments.’

‘The team provides high-quality, strategic and cost-effective advice.

‘Nathan Modell and senior associate Michael O’Brien provide high-quality, strategic advice, getting to the key issues quickly and effectively.’

‘They have great attention-to-detail and are a constant point of contact for us.’

‘The team has a strong depth of knowledge, experience and the ability to identify the real issues.’

Key clients

Peter Lind & Company (Central Region) Limited

AECOM Infrastructure & Environment UK Ltd

EM Highway Services Limited

Mouchel Limited

Hastingwood Securities Ltd.

WYG Group Limited

Association for Consultancy and Engineering

Ramboll Group

Building Engineering Services Association

Arup Group Ltd

Real estate > Construction: contentious Tier 3

As a specialist international construction firm, Beale & Co delivers a full range of services to its clients across more than 50 countries. The firm adeptly handles complex international arbitration proceedings, construction litigation, and advisory work relating to contracts and projects. Co-heading the team are Sheena Sood and Anthony Smith, whose diverse range of clients includes contractors, engineers, architects, health and safety professionals, and surveyors. Smith is also distinguished for his work on large-scale and high-value disputes and his knowledge of health and safety responsibilities on-site. Michael Salau is notable for his environmental and construction expertise, while Nathan Modell is well-versed in all manner of construction claims.

Practice head(s):

Sheena Sood; Antony Smith

Other key lawyers:

Michael Salau; Nathan Modell; Peter Sewell; Keith Lonsdale; James Vernon; Ian Masser


‘Excellent team – the partners are very prominent and hands-on.’

‘The high volume of experienced practitioners means a consistently high level of service.’

‘Nathan Modell understands a client’s concerns and objectives, but never loses objectivity.’

‘I find this practice to be very responsive to queries I raise in connection with a case. In my dealings with them, they always seem to be on hand to take a call and I have found them to provide good and effective advice.’

‘They are quick to deal with issues and are very approachable.’

‘Innovative team with expert skills in their field. Always available at the highest level. Quick to respond and act in their clients’ interests. Excellent strategic approach to legal problems.’

‘Professional, well-informed and friendly. Always available. Always willing to take the time to explain legal principles. Excellent communicators. Antony Smith is a standout.’

‘James Vernon is personable, down to earth, part of the team and commercial, on top of being a very capable lawyer.’

Key clients

Arup Group Limited

Mace Group

Broadway Malyan


Tetra Tech

Association for Consultancy and Engineering

BHM Construction


BAM Nuttall


Work highlights

Insurance > Insurance and reinsurance litigation Tier 4

Boutique insurance practice Beale & Co is best known for its involvement in major coverage disputes. Ross Baker and Martin Jensen‘s combined expertise spans D&O claims and professional indemnity disputes, as well as reinsurance coverage disputes. Peter Sewell is a regular fixture on high-value international cases arising out of projects in the UK, Europe, UAE, Latin America and across Asia. Also recommended for his global profile, Jason McNerlin is a go-to in product contamination and recall insurance coverage disputes. Another individual of note is Nathan Penny-Larter – promoted to partner in October 2022 – for his established professional negligence practice.

Practice head(s):

Peter Sewell; Antony Smith; Sheena Sood; Ross Baker; Martin Jensen

Other key lawyers:

Jason McNerlin; Nathan Penny-Larter; Ian Masser; Eileen Pathiraja


‘Fantastic knowledge of the market and current issues in the insurance sector.’

‘Ross Baker is a standout individual – knowledgeable with great contacts.’

‘Unlike many firms, they have strength in depth in the key areas we deal with, being professional risk and construction.’

‘The insurance team is absolutely brilliant and always available for any urgency.’

‘Ross Baker is a partner with a great sense of D&O policies. His support has been always productive, commercial and quick.’

‘Incisive and responsive team whom i find work very well with counsel in a collaborative manner.’

‘Nathan Penny-Later is a standout individual – he has a brain the size of a small planet is and incredibly diligent.’

‘Approachable, forward thinking and very quick to respond to enquiries. The quality of their advice is exceptional. A real pleasure to work with.’

Real estate > Construction: non-contentious Tier 4

The non-contentious construction team at Beale & Co, a boutique firm specialising in construction and insurance law, concentrates exclusively on drafting and negotiating contracts and handling project-related construction matters. The group is under the joint leadership of Will Buckby, Peter Kitson, and Andrew Croft. Buckby hones his focus on the highway and rail sectors, with UK, Ireland, Middle East and Africa experience. Kitson, who joined from Russell-Cooke LLP in February 2023, is proficient in contract strategy, while Croft brings expertise in advising on international projects, including those in the Middle East and Africa.

Practice head(s):

Will Buckby; Andrew Croft; Peter Kitson

Other key lawyers:

Nadir Hasan; Tim Kittow


‘The Beale & Co team make a real effort to know their clients and teams – both in terms of in-house lawyers and relevant business leads. They are open to feedback and innovation.’

‘Will Buckby is very responsive and great at client service and expectations management. Provides practical advice, as well as being clear on the black letter law.’

‘Andrew Croft is good at responding to queries and making time for clients. Plugged into key industry organisations and clearly interested and on top of key legal developments.’

‘The team at Beales have always been 1st Class. They are responsive, professional and always given us advice that has been appropriate for our business. The finance and billings side is always transparent and they work with us to accommodate our difficult finance system.’

‘The Beale & Co team are standout in being ‘user-friendly’. Their legal advice is robust and impressive (as would be expected from a firm of their calibre), but is unique in that it presented in such a way that it can be easily digested by stakeholders across the business. The team are available, very approachable and personable.’

‘Will Buckby is a standout partner. His advice is not only extremely high quality, but uniquely is able to provide this in a format which is accessible; making very complex issues understandable for non-legal stakeholders. Will has an innate ability to provide succinct, pragmatic and commercially-focused advice. Other standout members of the team include:

‘Always well prepared with a good understanding of both commercial and technical issues.’

Key clients

Arup Group Limited


Broadway Malyan


Tetra Tech


BHM Construction


BAM Nuttall

Atkins (a member of the SNC-Lavalin Group)

Galliford Try

Work highlights

  • Advising a global engineering firm in relation to a c.US$40 billion transport infrastructure project in the Middle East.
  • Advising a pioneering offshore energy design and engineering specialist in respect of the construction of a substantial floating offshore windfarm in Europe.
  • Acting for one of the UK’s largest contractors in reviewing, advising on and drafting the contract documents for the design and construction of a c.£100 million+ highway construction project.

Real estate > Construction Tier 4

Bristol-based but with an international reach, the ‘dynamic’ team at Beale & Co advise on disputes pertaining to the construction of commercial and residential buildings, as well as energy, infrastructure and civil engineering project litigation. David McArdle, who heads up the practice, is noted for his experience handling a range of claims, including multi-party litigation in the TCC. Nic Pegg further strengthens the contentious experience at the practice. Simon Mathews and Giles Tagg left to join DAC Beachcroft LLP in August 2023.

Practice head(s):

David McArdle

Other key lawyers:

Nic Pegg; Thomas Adamson; Jon Quirk


‘The team at Beale & Co, Bristol, has strength in considerable depth and across all levels of practitioner. Flexible and dynamic thinking best characterises the team and sets it apart from other firms.’


Real estate > Environment Tier 5

Beale & Co‘s team is adept in handling environmental matters in both domestic and cross-jurisdictional contexts. Team lead Michael Salau, noted as ‘a safe pair of hands’ is experienced advising and defending clients in relation to environmental damage and pollution in relation to waste and water management in particular.

Practice head(s):

Michael Salau

Other key lawyers:

Zita Mansi


‘Michael Salau is a safe pair of hands with many years of experience under his belt. He consistently provides sensible and pragmatic advice.’

‘Michael Salau and Zita Mansi make a small but efficient team and are our go-to people for environmental issues.’

Work highlights

  • Advising an international client in relation to their insurance portfolio and the impact of English environmental legislation as well as insurance law.
  • Advising in respect of a potential environmental prosecution concerning the alleged carrying out of a licensable activity without a permit.
  • Advising a national utilities company in relation to a claim alleging defective mapping of a sewer.

Insurance > Professional negligence Tier 1

Beale & Co specialises in defending professionals active in the construction and education fields as well as the legal and financial sectors against claims. Based in Bristol, the practice also counts a number of leading insurers among its client base. Joe Eizenberghas a great deal of knowledge of insurance law’ and leads the team together with Joe Bryant, who regularly acts on behalf of lawyers, insurance brokers and insurance companies. Giles Tagg left for DAC Beachcroft LLP in August 2023.

Practice head(s):

Joe Eizenberg; Joe Bryant

Other key lawyers:

David McArdle


‘Very knowledgeable about the professional indemnity insurance market and professional indemnity claims in general. A friendly team which is a pleasure to work with.’

‘Joe Bryant is a very friendly person to work with, and very familiar with the workings of the insurance market. Joe Eizenberg has a great deal of knowledge of insurance law, and friendly to work with.’

‘The team at Beales have excellent technical knowledge and excel when it comes to delivering results.’

‘Joe Bryant has always provided a service a cut above the rest, with clear concise advice, amazing support and a personable experience.’

‘The team benefits from a lack of red tape in this sphere. They are large enough to be market leaders and have garnered an excellent reputation but not too large as to become bogged down by the usual red tape of a larger organisation.’

‘Joe Eizenberg is exceptional in his approach. He can be everything to everyone and what I mean by that is that he is adept at tailoring his approach to his audience. He can be very down to earth for the person on the street but can also have a very technical and detailed discussion if his audience dictates.’

‘Technical ability apart, Joe Eizenberg is an absolute pleasure to deal with, and his approach definitely rubs off on the more junior members of his team who are also great to work with.’

Key clients





Arthur J Gallaghers


Everest Re




WR Berkley

Miles Smith


Work highlights

  • Acting in the defence of an architect and their professional indemnity insurer in relation to multi-party dispute involving claims of c. £50m.
  • Acting in the defence of an accountant/auditor and their professional indemnity insurer in relation to claims of c. £10m arising from alleged breaches of the Financial Reporting Standards and other accounting irregularities.
  • Acting in the defence of an insurance broker in relation to a claim for c. £10m from an insured following the failure of the insured’s policy to respond to a claim.

The Beale & Company ethos is to deliver commercial and cost-effective legal advice with a commitment to putting the needs of clients first – at every stage.

The firm: Beale & Company has a first-class reputation for advising on complex and technical matters in the fields of construction, engineering and infrastructure, insurance, the professions and technology. It has a firm grounding in London, Bristol, Ireland and Dubai. Its dynamic approach to business, coupled with a sense of togetherness and integrity, is valued by its clients and staff alike.

Types of work undertaken
Professional negligence: a core part of the firm’s insurance practice is its specialist teams acting on claims involving all professions. Experienced in handling complex and high-value claims, as well as more straightforward and cost-sensitive matters, the teams advise a spectrum of national and international insurers and insureds including construction professionals, solicitors, accountants and IFAs.

Insurance: as an integral part of the firm’s work, specialists provide advice on matters arising regarding D&O, financial institutions, property and casualty, product, cyber, education and EL/PL risks, in respect of claims (including claims handling and delegated authority schemes), coverage advice and policy wording.

Construction and projects: having been active in the sector for over 50 years, the firm acts for some of the foremost companies, providing specialist advice in the UK and throughout the world. Its non-contentious work includes advising on projects, from inception to completion, to guarantees and other security documentation. The firm has extensive dispute resolution experience handling large, high-value, technical cases effectively. UK and Irish work includes advising on and conducting arbitration, litigation, adjudication and mediation.

International arbitration/dispute resolution: with expertise in all types of dispute resolution across numerous jurisdictions, the firm advises on every aspect of litigation and alternative dispute resolution, including: international and domestic arbitration and adjudications; expert determination; mediation and negotiation. The firm provides clear, unambiguous strategic advice on both avoiding disputes and, where this is not possible, taking disputes through to a successful resolution. Its lawyers have many years of experience in handling complex disputes under all major arbitration and ad hoc rules, as well as DAB/DRB proceedings.

Corporate and commercial: the firm provides advice and services to a range of clients, including global corporations, SMEs, and professional practices. Corporate services include: business reorganisation and restructuring; company sales and purchases; corporate recovery; incorporation of companies and LLPs; joint ventures and strategic alliances; management buy-outs and buy-ins; M&A; private equity, finance; shareholders/partnership agreements; and succession planning.

Health, safety and environment: the firm has a dedicated team with a record of achieving results for its consultant, contractor, employer and insurer clients. It advises on: coroners’ inquests; corporate and gross negligence manslaughter prosecutions; drafting CDM-C and other appointments; drafting policies and procedures and advising on compliance, HSE, EA and police investigations; improvement and prohibition notices; insurance issues and coverage; offences and sentencing; representation.

Regions: a powerful base in Bristol gives a strong national dynamic to the insurance services provided in respect of all areas of claim, together with a highly regarded claims handling resource.

Ireland: the Dublin office provides specialist insurance and dispute services to the London market and other insurers across the professions, providing experience and expertise in the resolution of disputes across Ireland.

International: the increasingly strong practice in Dubai acts for clients throughout the GCC and operates as a hub for the work undertaken for clients in Africa. The firm has a wealth of experience advising developers, contractors, consultants and their insurance providers in international construction and engineering, infrastructure, and power and energy projects. It has provided legal advice to clients in respect of some of the most iconic construction projects in the GCC. Beale & Company is a founding member of the European network, Lexicom. It has relationships with the African Legal Network, which has over 580 lawyers in 14 major African cities.

Recruitment: the firm recruits, on average, six to seven graduate trainees each year across its offices.

Other offices: Bristol, Dubai, Dublin

Department Name Email Telephone
Chairman Antony Smith
Senior partner / construction disputes Sheena Sood
International Arbitration Antony Smith
Professional Negligence Peter Sewell
Projects and construction Will Buckby
Health, safety and environmental Sheena Sood
Competition and Public Procurement Paul Henty
Corporate and commercial James Hutchinson
Regions Joe Eizenberg
Ireland Tara Cosgrove
Dubai Claire Miller
International Arbitration / construction disputes Claire Miller
Photo Name Position Profile
Michael Archer photo Michael Archer Michael trained as a solicitor with the firm and over a career…
Will Buckby photo Will Buckby Partner
John Henderson photo John Henderson Dispute resolution is John’s main expertise. Most of his cases are settled…
James Hutchinson photo James Hutchinson James is a Partner in the Corporate team at Beale & Company.…
Joanna Lewis photo Joanna Lewis Jo is a partner in the construction and engineering and professional indemnity…
Ian Masser photo Ian Masser Ian is a partner in the Construction, Engineering and Infrastructure group. Ian…
David McArdle photo David McArdle David is a partner in the Bristol Office, specialising in defending claims…
Damian Mcphun photo Damian Mcphun Damian specialises in professional liability claims. He has considerable experience of acting…
Nathan Modell photo Nathan Modell Nathan specialises in contentious construction matters and has advised a range of…
Stephen Reilly photo Stephen Reilly With a strong focus and expertise in Professional Indemnity, D&O, FI, Crime…
Antony Smith photo Antony Smith Antony is well known and widely recognised in the construction and insurance…
Sheena Sood photo Sheena Sood Sheena qualified in 1992 having trained with Beale & Company. She has…
James Vernon photo James Vernon James joined Beale and Company in 2003, qualifying in 2005, and is…
Number of partners : 23
Number of associates : 12
Number of assistant solicitors : 18
Number of other fee-earners : 23