Eleni Polycarpou > Withers LLP > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Withers LLP
20 Old Bailey

Living Wage

Work Department

Commerical litigation and international arbitration.


Partner and co-head of International Arbitration. 

Eleni is a litigation and arbitration specialist with long standing expertise in art law and is responsible for contentious art matters in London. She is described as someone who is ‘highly respected within the sector’ and ‘very knowledgeable and exceptional with clients’, someone who ‘just gets it, knows how cases should be handled especially when it comes to the very sensitive ones’.

Eleni co-heads the firm’s widely respected international arbitration practice and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators acting as counsel and as arbitrator in commercial disputes in many sectors including shipping and banking. She has acted as counsel in many high value commercial arbitration matters in a number of institutions including LCIA and ICC.

Eleni is a trusted adviser to high net worth individuals and their businesses often advising on cross- border matters including wide ranging issues appearing in the covid pandemic. She is acting for art galleries, museums, artists and collectors in all types of art related disputes and transactions and has dealt with high profile international title disputes, consignment, provenance and authenticity disputes.


Italian, Greek


Hellenic Law Association of London; and

London Court of International Arbitration.

Lawyer Rankings

London > Dispute resolution > Commercial litigation: mid-market

Withers LLP‘s commercial litigation practice covers asset recovery and enforcement work, contract and company disputes, financial services claims, fraud, and white-collar defence and investigations. The team also acts in professional negligence, insurance, and restructuring and insolvency-related litigation. Global dispute resolution CEO Peter Woodalways attracts the big cases and the big clients‘; Roberto Moruzzi is a renowned international commercial litigator; and Tatiana Menshenina is experienced in disputes involving Russia, Ukraine and the CIS. Also key to the practice, Andrew Wass acts in financial mis-selling claims; and civil fraud head Stephen Ross is ‘great with clients‘; Eleni Polycarpou co- heads the firm’s international arbitration group; Lesley Timms is ‘an excellent lawyer‘; and Sinead Harris is a specialist in disputes involving contentious insolvency, fraud, asset recovery, and enforcement issues. Financial services disputes partner Henry Farris joined from Mishcon de Reya LLP in March 2023.

London > Dispute resolution > International arbitration

Withers LLP‘s ‘fantastic team of very capable international lawyers‘ consistently handles international arbitrations involving Africa, the Middle East and Asia, as well as Russia and CIS countries. Hussein Haeri is ‘very knowledgeable about international arbitration‘, while Eleni Polycarpou acts in international arbitration proceedings under a range of arbitration rules. Tatiana Menshenina is experienced in disputes involving Russia, Ukraine and the CIS; Peter Wood is dispute resolution head; Roberto Moruzzi acts in commercial arbitrations; and Geoffrey Cox KC is the firm’s consultant global counsel. Other key names are special counsel Robert Kovacs, and senior associates Camilla Gambarini and Ruzin Dagli.

London > Insurance > Professional negligence

Withers LLP has a strong record of delivering both claimants and defendants ‘consistently high quality, commercially savvy advice.’ The firm is particularly active in professional negligence cases against insured parties, including legal, financial, and real estate professionals. Eleni Polycarpou has experience in advising complex, high profile, sensitive matters for both claimants and defendants, and jointly leads the team alongside Caroline Thompson, who specialises in actions against legal professionals, particularly concerning tax and finance. Senior associate Joshua Swift is experienced in both domestic and international matters.

London > Private client > Art and cultural property

Notably featuring Sarah Barker and Eleni Polycarpou, the outstanding team at Withers LLP has ‘incredible depth and can pivot on issues quickly making it a lean, mean and agile litigation and advisory machine’. Barker works with collectors and creative entrepreneurs as well as successful artists and their estates, art dealers and artTech businesses on a whole host of commercial and transactional matters, while Polycarpou specialises in contentious art matters, many of which are multi-jurisdictional, and include stolen art cases, title and authenticity disputes, and consignment cases. The group added Natalie Sherborn to its ranks from Pinsent Masons LLP, who is adept at handling white-collar defence and investigations.