Set Profile > Essex Court Chambers > London, England
Essex Court Chambers Offices
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Essex Court Chambers > The Legal 500 Rankings
Commercial litigation Tier 1
Essex Court Chambers is 'top of the pile' with 'fantastic counsel at all levels'. Clients add that the set is 'a market-leader when it comes to the production of know-how and has first-class administration'. The 'great strength in depth' is demonstrated by David Foxton QC's departure to become a judge, and the availability of other tier one silks to step into the breach. Complex international disputes feature heavily, including the $1bn Avonwick v Taruta, in which Nathan Pillow QC and Anton Dudnikov are among those representing the Ukrainian businessman, Sergey Taruta. Paul McGrath QC is also leading David Davies and James Sheehan in Tatneft v Bogylubov/Kolomoisky.
Fraud: civil Tier 1
Essex Court Chambers has established itself 'as a go-to set, not only for Commercial Court work and international arbitration but for offshore international fraud cases, too'. The 'excellent set is teeming with talent at all levels' and 'seems to have monopolised the top senior juniors in commercial fraud', making it 'the leading fraud set, by a significant margin – they have all the good juniors and most of the good silks'. Notable cases include National Bank Trust v Yurov in which Nathan Pillow QC, David Davies and Anton Dudnikov represent the claimant, with James Willan sole counsel for one of the bank's directors. A 'dedicated and valuable team player', Stuart Cribb is a rising star in chambers.
Ruth den Besten - Essex Court Chambers ‘A phenomenal junior for the most hard fought fraud cases - very bright, and knows fraud inside out. A strong advocate, not intimidated by QCs on the other side of the room.’
Essex Court Chambers is 'top of the list for international arbitration' with a 'deep bench of excellent barristers'. The set has been a market leader for some time, but hasn't rested on its laurels, with the arrivals of Alison Macdonald QC and Angeline Welsh from Matrix Chambers and Sean Aughey from 11KBW, which together is considered 'quite a coup' by observers. Notable cases include VRG Linhas Aereas SA v MatlinPatterson Opportunities II LP in which Vernon Flynn QC and Emily Wood are representing the private equity group MatlinPatterson in a challenged arbitral award. Flynn and Lucas Bastin are also facing off against Paul Key QC in Karkey Karadeniz Elektrik Uretim A.S. v The Islamic Republic of Pakistan.
Public international law Tier 1
Essex Court Chambers is 'well known as an excellent PIL set' and the 'counsel are consistently of top quality and involved in some of the highest-profile PIL work around'. The set has 'recruited well recently' with the arrival of Alison Macdonald QC from Matrix Chambers and Sean Aughey from 11KBW cementing its status at the top. Recent cases include Qatar v United Arab Emirates at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), where Dan Sarooshi QC and Vaughan Lowe QC appeared on opposing sides. Macdonald also represented The Republic of Mauritius in a high profile ICJ Advisory Opinion on the Chagos Archipelago, in which Sam Wordsworth QC was opposing counsel.
Essex Court Chambers is 'always one of our first ports of call' for banking and finance disputes, and is 'particularly good on complex cases with an international element'. The chambers stands out for having 'an absolutely fabulous set of senior juniors'. Market-defining cases are a matter of course, such as PCP Capital Partners LLP v Barclays Plc, in which Joe Smouha QC and James Sheehan are representing the claimant. Nathan Pillow QC and David Davies are among a team of four members representing the claimant in Bank Trust v Yurov & others, with James Willan on the opposing team.
Employment Tier 2
Essex Court Chambers is 'a leading commercial set that is also a leader in employment law, not just because of the quality of its advocates but because its employment barristers have cross-over practices into other areas, which give them an edge in contentious and complex employment and employment-related disputes'. Of recent note, Andrew Hochhauser QC acted in an ET unfair dismissal and disability discrimination claim, which was brought by a former senior banker, who had worked for a bank for almost 40 years. Daniel Oudkerk QC has appeared in several significant commercial employment disputes, including Egon Zehnder v Tillman SC, the first employee competition case in over 100 years to reach the Supreme Court.
David Craig QC - Essex Court Chambers ‘A phenomenal silk at the top of his game, he is the natural first choice for the most complex and high-value High Court employment claims and arbitrations. David is an outstanding advocate with devastating cross-examination skills, and his mastery of the detail in hugely complex litigation is without comparison.’
Energy Tier 2
Essex Court Chambers is 'at top of the tree with great strength in depth', remarks one client. A prominent set for international arbitration, it has several members who appear in large-scale energy litigation. Although David Foxton QC was appointed to the High Court Bench in early 2020 the set retains 'many junior silks and senior juniors with real strength in this area'. Among these are Jern-Fei Ng QC, who took silk in 2018, and Siddharth Dhar, who acted for Karkey in an $845m dispute concerning the provision of Turkish electric power barges for the supply of electricity to the city of Karachi. Paul Key QC acted as lead counsel for National Iranian Gas Corporation in its on-going defence of a $5bn energy arbitration claim brought by Turkmenistan. One client notes that 'you cannot fault the clerks room, which is efficient and friendly, and Joe Ferrigno is a fantastic senior clerk'.
Essex Court Chambers is a 'first-rate international arbitration chambers' and this reputation extends to its stable of arbitrators. The full-time arbitrators, which include Sir Bernard Eder and several other highly respected former judges, are housed in the associated specialist chambers, 24 Lincoln's Inn Fields. The main chambers has several well-respected counsel who also work as arbitrators, with Toby Landau QC and Jeffrey Gruder QC among the most active. The set, and the market as a whole, mourns the loss V V Veeder QC, who sadly passed away in 2020 and was widely considered to be a doyen of the arbitration world.
Shipping Tier 2
‘A very good and well-respected set’, Essex Court Chambers covers a range of shipping disputes, including those involving shipbuilding, insurance, and charterparties. Highlights of 2019 for the set included the Panamax Trader, in which Steven Berry QC and Jeremy Brier handled a Commercial Court trial and LMAA arbitration involving allegations that shipowners scuttled their ship to claim insurance. Elsewhere, Nathan Pillow QC acted in the high-value Commercial Court case Palmali Shipping vs Litasco, while Christopher Smith QC handled CCNI Arauco, a case related to an explosion on a vessel.
Commodities Tier 3
Essex Court Chambers is 'very user-friendly' and clients note that 'you can always find the suitable barrister and there are juniors who are very intelligent and easy to work with'. The set has a long history in the shipping and commodities arena and continues to be involved in high-value arbitrations. Graham Dunning QC has 35 years' experience in shipping and commodities matters and his recent work includes high-value fraud matters relating to the storage of metal. Nigel Eaton QC recently handled high-value matters relating to coal, mining and energy. Prominent junior David Walsh acted for BMCE Bank International in a two-week trial concerning a cargo of steel billets that went missing in Nigeria. 'You cannot fault the clerks room', notes one source who praises senior clerk Joe Ferrigno.
Insurance and reinsurance Tier 3
Essex Court Chambers is 'a class act and a set full of good counsel'. Its members are experts in insurance disputes, including Bermuda Form arbitrations, but are also recognised in more traditional fields of insurance, such as marine insurance. David Scorey QC acted for Chubb in a $100m Supreme Court insurance policy claim that related to Deepwater Horizon, the worst maritime environmental pollution disaster in US history. John Lockey QC represented Weyerhaeuser in the Commercial Court, which produced the leading decision on resolving jurisdiction battles where the policy contains competing arbitration and jurisdiction clauses. The former head of chambers, David Foxton QC, has been appointed to the High Court Bench.
Offshore Tier 3
'A leading set with an extremely impressive roster', Essex Court Chambers not only has a reputation for handling elite commercial matters before the English courts but is also active in the British Overseas Territories. James Willan represents Barclays in litigation in the Cayman Islands in proceedings against the latter party of the AHAB v Saad case, while Jern-Fei Ng QC and Vernon Flynn QC are both instructed for China Shanshui Cement Group in Caymanian litigation concerning the company's proposed winding-up. As far as the BVI is concerned, Paul McGrath QC represents the former in the Renova Industries v Emerson International dispute, which in 2019 went to the Privy Council on a point concerning freezing orders. Members of chambers are well-connected in the Isle of Man, with Ciaran Keller representing a defunct space tourism company in a long-running dispute with Japanese businessman.
'Experts in their field', Essex Court Chambers has 'a top reputation and lives up to it' when it comes to arts and cultural property instructions. Joe Smouha QC shines in title, dealer commission, authenticity, and purchasing syndicate disputes, as demonstrated in a recent Commercial Court trial concerning the sale of an alleged counterfeit painting by Sotheby's. The Joint Head of Chambers recently acted for defendant Mark Weiss Ltd, leading art fraud and contractual breach expert Claudia Renton. Emily Wood, who also sits as an arbitrator on art-related matters, was instructed by the other side in this $10m claim against the Old Master dealer.
From its base in London and outpost in Singapore, Essex Court Chambers is one of the leading commercial sets for both domestic and international disputes. The latest guide sees the set among the top ten chambers with the most leading set rankings, the most Tier 1 set rankings, the most overall barrister rankings, and the most leading silks rankings. In recent news, Joe Smouha QC and Huw Davies QC were appointed Joint Heads of Chambers, following the announcement of David Foxton QC’s elevation to the High Court Bench in December 2019. Alison Macdonald QC and Angeline Welsh joined from Matrix Chambers, while Sean Aughey arrived from 11KBW. Toby Landau QC was elected to the governing board of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration. Hugh Mercer QC has been elected to serve as Head of the UK Delegation to The Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe.
Best clerks in any set – they go above and beyond.
Cannot fault the clerks room. Joe Ferrigno is a fantastic senior clerk. Particular mentions also to Jack Wood, Oliver Duane and Oliver Butcher – nothing is ever too much trouble and they are professional but friendly and develop a real rapport with solicitors.
Clerks room excellent – always ready to help in professional efficient way
Jack Wood is, in my opinion, the best clerk in London. Super responsive, helpful and commercially-savvy. Always a pleasure to deal with him.
Joe Ferrigno is a force of nature, who makes my life significantly easier.
Joe Ferrigno is outstanding. Highly responsive and engaged.
Kevin Grubb is very good to work with and attuned to commercial realities and pressures faced by solicitors firms vis-a-vis clients. This makes a massive difference when deciding which set to reach out to.
Ollie Butcher has been outstanding as a clerk, very responsive and savvy. He has done very well with listings.
The best out there – they make a real effort to get to know their solicitors, and to make our lives easier.
The clerking team are consistently great. Ben Perry is the best in the business. His commercial instincts are spot on and he knows exactly what is needed for a dispute.
The clerks are always very efficient and friendly – they will engage effectively on negotiating commercial terms and are happy to be flexible to accommodate client requirements
The clerks are always very efficient, practical and friendly. Good at understanding the commercial framework and happy to discuss rates/commercial terms and arrangements.
The clerks we have communicated with have always been helpful, providing timely and qualified service.
They have been upping their game in terms of service both from the barristers and the clerks room. Definite feeling of greater approachability.
Very good service and I’m particularly impressed with Joe Ferrigno’s hands on approach and can-do attitude. He wants to find ways to be innovative.
Very helpful indeed in sorting out everything from zoom conferencing to prepping bundles/delivery of hard copy documents, in fact pretty much anything you ask of them. Great bunch.
Very responsive. Ben Perry, is excellent and particularly easy to deal with when negotiating fees.
Clearly one of the leading commercial sets. very well clerked and resourced top to bottom.
Deep bench of excellent barristers at Essex Court Chambers.
Essex Court are absolutely top rate and the go to set for complex international disputes.
Essex Court are the top of the tree – great strength in depth and coverage.
Essex Court are top of the pile. They have fantastic counsel at all levels, are market-leaders when it comes to the production of know-how and have first-class administration
Essex Court Chambers has always had a good selection of extremely bright counsel for high court litigation and for international arbitration. The right counsel are not always available but they are always worth an enquiry.
Essex Court chambers has an excellent reputation in the market for VAT, with an all-star team including Roderick Cordara QC, Edmund King QC, David Scorey QC and Jern-Fei Ng QC.
Essex Court Chambers is in my view rightly considered one of the leading if not the leading commercial set in England. Huge strength and choice of counsel to choose from.
Essex court is a powerhouse in commercial litigation for very good reason. Chambers is full of extremely bright and effective advocates.
Essex Court is the go to set for advice on high value complex litigation. All members are immensely bright and able, whilst being easy to work with, and the clerks room is always responsive and eager to help. A hugely well established set, which you can be confident will deliver – whichever member you are instructing.
Extremely professional, quick and effective. Take time to develop a personal relationship by phone and email communication.
The chambers are very easy to work with, highly efficient and flexible, often treating Instructing Solicitors as part of the ‘team’ and assisting with filing documents at court etc when there are time pressures. They are also very accommodating when we find ourselves in London for a trial and in need of a ‘base’, which is very much appreciated.
This is an excellent set, and a top set for international arbitration.
Top set with great clerking and a strong team at QC and junior level. Always think of them when looking for counsel. Reasonable prices and very open to negotiation and the client circumstances.
Very strong team of barristers particularly for complex commercial disputes.
With 'an all-star team', Essex Court Chambers is a leading light for contentious VAT. In addition to VAT litigation, members have vast experience in matters involving environmental taxation, customs duty and other aspects of indirect tax. Roderick Cordara QC is admitted to practice in England and Wales and Australia, and often appears in the European Court of Justice on tax-related matters. In a recent highlight, he acted for American Express against HMRC in a case concerning how Amex cards work in relation to merchants and cardholders. Edward Brown focuses on VAT and customs duty, acting for and against the revenue; he appeared for News UK in its VAT dispute with HMRC concerning the treatment of digital media. David Scorey QC acted for an NHS foundation trust in The Queen (on application of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust) v The Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs, successfully arguing that it was eligible for a recovery for the input tax on its car leasing scheme.
Essex Court Chambers > Set Profile
Essex Court Chambers is a leading set of barristers’ chambers, specialising in commercial and financial litigation, arbitration, public law and public international law.
Members of Chambers are recognised specialists in all areas of commercial law and handle disputes across the full spectrum of the business and financial world, including banking & finance, civil fraud, corporate/chancery & offshore, insurance & reinsurance, energy, trade, shipping, revenue, and employment.
Chambers is not a firm, nor are its members partners or employees. Rather, Chambers is comprised of individual barristers, each of whom is a self-employed sole practitioner. Members of Chambers are commonly retained by opposing sides in the same dispute, both in litigation and arbitration, with protocols in place to safeguard confidentiality. As well as acting on opposing sides, individuals appear in front of other members acting impartially as Deputy Judges or Arbitrators.
The barristers at Essex Court Chambers advise and act in disputes both in the UK and worldwide. They have a reputation for exceptional talent, top-class advocacy and a client-oriented approach.
The set: Founded in 1961, the then five members of chambers included the future judges Lord Mustill, Lord Justice Evans and Lord Justice Kerr. Other distinguished alumni include Lords Saville and Steyn, Lord Thomas (Lord Chief Justice), Lord Justice Beatson, Sir Anthony Colman, Bernard Eder (now Sir Bernard Eder), Geraldine Andrews (now Mrs Justice Andrews), Simon Bryan (now Mr Justice Bryan), Sara Cockerill (now Mrs Justice Cockerill), Richard Jacobs (now Mr Justice Jacobs), Tim Eicke (now a Judge of the European Court of Human Rights), Dame Rosalyn Higgins (former president of the International Court of Justice) and Sir Christopher Greenwood (formerly a Judge of the International Court of Justice). Essex Court Chambers continues to attract the highest calibre of recruits, and now comprises over 90 members.
Pupillage: chambers typically offers up to four funded 12-month tenancy-seeking pupillages per year. Applications should be made via the Pupillage Gateway. Applications from both law and non-law graduates are welcomed. Applicants for pupillage are encouraged to undertake a mini-pupillage (of 1-2 days). Information about mini-pupillage, including deadlines for mini-pupillage applications and an online application form, is available at www.essexcourt.com.
Types of work undertaken: Annual market research and award ceremonies confirm that members are consistently recognised as leading individuals by clients and peers in a number of key areas, but most notably: international commercial arbitration; commercial litigation; civil fraud; public international law; VAT; energy and natural resources; insurance and reinsurance; shipping; banking and finance; commodities; employment; professional negligence; media, entertainment and sport; civil liberties and human rights; administrative and public law; agriculture; information technology; immigration; aviation; EU and competition; offshore litigation; commercial chancery; and insolvency and corporate recovery.
Members of Chambers have been consistently instructed in many of the largest court and arbitral proceedings of the last 50 years, including the Tin Council litigation, the Lloyd’s litigation, the swaps litigation, Elektrim SA v Vivendi Universal SA, Kuwait Airways Corporation v Iraq Airways Co, the Solitaire arbitration, Fiona Trust & Holding Corporation v Privalov, Cherney v Deripaska and Deutsche Bank AG v Sebastian Holdings Inc.
|Senior Clerk||Joe Ferrignofirstname.lastname@example.org||020 7147 7221|
|First Junior Clerk & Team Leader||Ben Perryemail@example.com||020 7147 7222|
|Team Leader||Jack Woodfirstname.lastname@example.org||020 7147 7223|
|Team Leader||Katie Myles||KGrubb@essexcourt.com||020 7147 7281|
|Team Leader||Kevin Grubb||KGrubb@essexcourt.com||020 7147 7281|
|Tim Akkouh||Tim is a commercial litigator, with a strong reputation for civil fraud…||View Profile|
|Rebecca Akushie||Arbitration; commercial litigation; conflict of laws; insurance and reinsurance; international commercial arbitration;…||View Profile|
|Sean Aughey||Barrister||View Profile|
|David Baker||Barrister||View Profile|
|Lucas Bastin||Lucas has a versatile practice across an array of practices areas, albeit…||View Profile|
|Mark Belshaw||Barrister||View Profile|
|Sir Franklin Berman QC||Specialises in international arbitration and advisory work in international law. 50-year career…||View Profile|
|Steven Berry QC||Has specialised since 1985 in the associated fields of insurance and reinsurance,…||View Profile|
|Claire Blanchard QC||Barrister. Claire Blanchard QC has a specialist commercial practice and is an…||View Profile|
|Adam Board||Adam acts and advises as counsel in commercial litigation and international arbitration…||View Profile|
|Stewart Boyd QC||Has appeared as counsel in the English courts and in other courts…||View Profile|
|Prof Alan Boyle||Specialist in public international law, especially international environmental law and law of…||View Profile|
|Jeremy Brier||Commercial barrister frequently appearing in the Commercial Court and in international arbitrations,…||View Profile|
|Edward Brown||Broad-ranging practice across the following practice areas: commercial litigation; employment; media, entertainment…||View Profile|
|Wei Jian Chan||Barrister||View Profile|
|Charles Ciumei QC||Has a practice covering all aspects of employment with a commercial aspect,…||View Profile|
|James Collins QC||Has a broad-based commercial practice. Recognised as clever, commercial and user-friendly, he…||View Profile|
|Roderick Cordara QC||Has a broad commercial and public law practice with over 30 years’…||View Profile|
|David Craig QC||Widely recognised as a leading junior in employment law. Does the full…||View Profile|
|Stuart Cribb||Stuart has a broad commercial practice in line with Chambers’ profile. He…||View Profile|
|Simon Crookenden QC||Shipping: charterparty and bills of lading disputes; cargo claims; ship building; ship…||View Profile|
|David Davies||Has a broadly based commercial practice encompassing both acting as junior counsel…||View Profile|
|Huw Davies QC||Experienced and effective cross examiner with ‘an incredibly impressive style and approach’…||View Profile|
|Ruth Den Besten||Ruth den Besten is a senior junior practitioner with substantial expertise in…||View Profile|
|Siddharth Dhar||Siddharth acts as an advocate and advisor in substantial commercial litigation and…||View Profile|
|Anna Dilnot||Broad commercial and commercial chancery litigation practice with a particular speciality in…||View Profile|
|Ricky Diwan QC||Ricky Diwan QC specialises in international commercial and investment arbitration and related…||View Profile|
|Stephen Donnelly||Barrister||View Profile|
|Shane Doyle QC||Shane Doyle QC has a commercial practice covering a wide range of…||View Profile|
|Anton Dudnikov||Anton has a broad commercial practice. He is regularly instructed in international…||View Profile|
|Graham Dunning QC||Graham Dunning QC was until recently the co-head of Essex Court Chambers.…||View Profile|
|Nigel Eaton QC||Specialises in international and domestic commercial litigation, with a particular emphasis on…||View Profile|
|Tim Eicke QC||Highly experienced and respected public law advocate with a strong background in…||View Profile|
|Vernon Flynn QC||Vernon Flynn QC is a veteran of many heavyweight litigation and arbitration…||View Profile|
|Tom Ford||View Profile|
|Martin Griffiths QC||Has a busy general commercial practice including a significant proportion of employment-related…||View Profile|
|Jeffrey Gruder QC||Jeffrey Gruder QC is widely recognised as a leading silk at the…||View Profile|
|Naomi Hart||Naomi has a broad commercial litigation and arbitration practice. She has experience…||View Profile|
|Neil Hart||Specialises in the fields of insurance and reinsurance, shipping (dry and wet)…||View Profile|
|Andrew Hochhauser QC||Has a broad-based commercial practice, including a significant number of employment-related disputes…||View Profile|
|Philippa Hopkins QC||Advises and acts in a wide range of commercial disputes, both in…||View Profile|
|Stephen Houseman QC||Handles a wide range of commercial disputes. Many of his cases are…||View Profile|
|Richard Hoyle||Barrister specialising in commercial litigation and international arbitration – most matters involve…||View Profile|
|Ian Hunter QC||Has a broad-based commercial practice in line with chambers’ profile. A major…||View Profile|
|Louise Hutton||Louise’s practice covers commercial and commercial/chancery litigation and arbitration, including banking and…||View Profile|
|David Joseph QC||Has acted as counsel and arbitrator in an extremely wide range of…||View Profile|
|Catherine Jung||View Profile|
|Ciaran Keller||Commercial and chancery litigation and arbitration (domestic and international), including: business agreements…||View Profile|
|Paul Key QC||In private practice as a barrister since 1997, specialising in international and…||View Profile|
|Toby Landau QC||In private practice as a barrister since 1994, specialising in international and…||View Profile|
|Prof Martin Lau||Regularly advises on South Asian law and Islamic law in the form…||View Profile|
|Andrew Legg||Andrew has a broad commercial practice in line with Chambers’ profile. He…||View Profile|
|Owen Lloyd||Barrister||View Profile|
|John Lockey QC||Barrister specialising in insurance, reinsurance, commercial litigation, and professional negligence including brokers’…||View Profile|
|Prof Vaughan Lowe QC||Practises as counsel in International Court of Justice, European Court of Human…||View Profile|
|Alison Macdonald||Barrister||View Profile|
|Jackie McArthur||Barrister||View Profile|
|Paul McGrath QC||Barrister with a broad-based practice. Between 1999 and 2001 he was editor…||View Profile|
|Hugh Mercer QC||Court and advisory advocate specialising in EU, competition, public law and cross-border…||View Profile|
|David Mildon QC||General commercial litigation and arbitration including ABCI v Banque Franco Tunisienne …||View Profile|
|Richard Millett QC||Specialises in: banking law, securities, debt and other financing instruments, derivatives, loan…||View Profile|
|Salim Moollan QC||Specialises in international and commercial law, in particular international commercial and investment…||View Profile|
|Bibek Mukherjee||Bibek undertakes a broad range of commercial work, as both sole and…||View Profile|
|Jern-Fei Ng QC||Barrister specialising in civil fraud, commercial litigation, energy and commodities, international arbitration,…||View Profile|
|Freddie Onslow||Barrister||View Profile|
|Daniel Oudkerk QC||Daniel Oudkerk QC has a broad-based trial and advisory practice. He is…||View Profile|
|David Peters||Wide experience of commercial law with emphasis on general commercial litigation, civil…||View Profile|
|Nathan Pillow QC||Specialises in commercial dispute resolution. Practises in the English courts at all…||View Profile|
|Freddie Popplewell||Barrister||View Profile|
|Iain Quirk||Has a broad commercial practice before the English courts and in arbitration.…||View Profile|
|Claudia Renton||Claudia has a broad commercial practice with specialisms in media and entertainment…||View Profile|
|Mr John Robb||John has a broad commercial law practice. He specialises in shipping, banking…||View Profile|
|Jane Russell||Practises in employment and commercial law, acting for mainly city respondent clients.…||View Profile|
|Amy Sander||Amy has a broad commercial practice with a particular interest in public…||View Profile|
|Prof Dan Sarooshi QC||Professor Dan Sarooshi Q.C. has a track record of achieving success in…||View Profile|
|David Scorey QC||Wide-ranging practice in international and domestic commercial law, litigating in both domestic…||View Profile|
|Malcolm Shaw QC||Barrister focusing on public international law. Cases include: R v Mohamed Gul…||View Profile|
|James Sheehan||Specialist in commercial and chancery litigation and arbitration. Practice areas include civil…||View Profile|
|Christopher Smith QC||Chris Smith has a broad based practice covering all aspects of domestic…||View Profile|
|Joe Smouha QC||Has a broad-based commercial practice with a particular emphasis on appearances in…||View Profile|
|John Snider||Barrister practising in the following areas: shipping, insurance, arbitration (including LMAA, ICC,…||View Profile|
|Paul Stanley QC||Prior to being called to the bar, Paul lectured on European Community…||View Profile|
|Luke Tattersall||Barrister||View Profile|
|Mark Templeman QC||Practises primarily in the fields of reinsurance and insurance (marine and non-marine).…||View Profile|
|Benedict Tompkins||Benedict has a broad commercial litigation and arbitration practice. He has experience…||View Profile|
|Damien Walker||Damien Walker is a senior junior counsel specialising in commercial dispute resolution.…||View Profile|
|David Walsh||Barrister with a broad commercial practice. Particularly well-known for his work in…||View Profile|
|Mubarak Waseem||Barrister||View Profile|
|Prof Philippa Watson||Has a practice in London, Dublin and Brussels. Most of her work…||View Profile|
|Peter Webster||Undertakes a broad range of commercial work, as both sole counsel and…||View Profile|
|Jessica Wells||Has a broad commercial practice, with a particular interest in public international…||View Profile|
|Angeline Welsh||Barrister||View Profile|
|James Willan||Barrister with a broad-based commercial practice, appearing before the county courts, High…||View Profile|
|Emily Wood||Has a broad commercial practice in line with chambers’ profile. Focused on…||View Profile|
|Adam Woolnough||Arbitration, commercial litigation, conflict of laws, insurance and reinsurance, public international law,…||View Profile|
|Sam Wordsworth QC||In private practice as a barrister since 1997, specialising in public international…||View Profile|
Staff FiguresLucy Smith : Head of Marketing Jacky Chase : Operations Manager
CLIENT: Andy McGregor, Head of Civil Fraud, RPC
TESTIMONAL: “We have been very impressed and pleased with the completely reliable round the clock service, both in London and Singapore. As you know the best work often comes in on Friday night and Saturday morning and one has to be able to deploy serious combined resources without fuss immediately. On a major multi-party energy dispute we needed to drop everything over a weekend to deliver time critical advice and a top QC and junior worked solidly for three days to get this done. Another QC/senior junior team has been deployed at short notice to great effect on an extremely sensitive contempt application where familiarisation with a huge amount of material has been required. There have been a number of other mainstream matters where everything has gone very smoothly. We consider ourselves to be in extremely capable hands with a depth of resource that can take on whatever is needed.”
CLIENT: Michael Leeds, Partner, Grant Thornton UK LLP
TESTIMONAL: “I have worked with Essex Court Chambers for a number of years now and continue to have a very positive experience in terms of both the quality of barristers that I have worked with and the support team in place.
1 – The EC team organise a number of key technical events within the market which have been thorough in content and material. They are well organised and innovative in approach and explore topics not many other organisations look at eg Banking Disputes on insolvency cases
2 – The EC team is innovative in its approach to Business Development for example in the way it targets markets and regions eg the Offshore market, Russia and the Asset Recovery space
3 – My interactions with the support team on events have only been positive and in particular team members at the junior clerk level have pro-actively sought to build relationships with Business Development people within my team to grow a rapport at all levels
4 – When I have sought the input of the EC clerking team on identifying suitable Counsel for matters, I have found them to be adept at recommending the right people, whether they are QCs or Juniors
5 – The EC team is an effective communicator across multiple channels, especially LinkedIn and Email
6 – It is clear from everyone at EC that this is a market leading Chambers.
The service from EC Chambers goes from strength to strength and their support for our Insolvency and asset recovery and Forensics and Investigations practices is outstanding. We thoroughly enjoy working and engaging with their clerking team and their barristers and are always provided with a superb level of service.”
CLIENT: Andrew Savage, Partner, McDermott Will & Emery UK LLP
TESTIMONAL: I have found the Essex Court team to be (as ever) very responsive and attuned to the outlook of the lay client. They are excellent at identifying the right barrister for the job and always reliable. A go to set of chambers with clerks who don’t rest on their laurels.
CLIENT: Sophie Eyre, Bird and Bird LLP
TESTIMONAL: “The team at Essex Court Chambers are forward looking and client understanding. The now clear split between arbitrator clerks and barristers clerks is also of huge assistance and adds an extra layer of separation so that information barriers are all the more visible to clients.
The clerks recognise the pressure solicitors are often put under by clients and the budgetary constraints and various fee structures that we are required to work with now. They are always creative and find counsel that not only specialise in the issues but who culturally suit the client/solicitors.
TESTIMONAL: Joe Ferrigno and his team are a modern group with clear value add above other sets and whose modus operandi is to build long term relationships with solicitors.”
CLIENT: Rupert Boswall, Senior Partner, RPC
TESTIMONAL: “Essex Court’s stellar reputation is driven to a large extent by having a clerking team that is head and shoulders above the competition. Joe and his team are always commercial and a joy to work with.”
CLIENT: Kambiz Larizadeh, Partner, Akin Gump
TESTIMONAL: “Choice of counsel is a very important decision in any significant piece of litigation. A good clerking team is an integral part of that decision-making process and also in ensuring that, once made, the counsel team provide the best possible client service. The clerking team at Essex Court Chambers, led by Joe Ferrigno, is without question the premier clerking team in London, in a crowded field. They are reliable, provide excellent judgment and advice in choice of counsel, and help effectively to co-ordinate with the Courts to administer client cases. All of which enables solicitors to meet and manage client expectations. The team goes from strength to strength, and is one of the key reasons I keep coming back to Essex Court time and time again.”
Members of Essex Court Chambers are involved in a variety of initiatives for the furtherance of equality and diversity and promoting access to the legal profession and to the bar. Examples of these include:
The Social Mobility Foundation
For the last five years, Essex Court Chambers has been an official supporter of the Social Mobility Foundation, and a large number of members of Chambers are regularly involved in running workshops and activities for students identified by the Social Mobility Foundation. Essex Court Chambers was the first (and still the only) chambers to become an official supporter of the Social Mobility Foundation. One of the key focuses of the Social Mobility Foundation is to support talented students from non-traditional backgrounds to focus on both thinking about careers and university choices whilst at school, and to support students in these endeavours. Supporting the Social Mobility Foundation came as part of a recognition by members of chambers that more needs to be done, far earlier in the recruitment process, and with a long term focus: supporting talented students to achieve their potential at school and university, enabling them to be the barristers of the future. Members of Chambers run at least four events per year with the Social Mobility Foundation, including a public speaking workshop for sixth form students, a mooting workshop for students at university, attending the Social Mobility Foundations career events, giving feedback on draft personal statements for university law degree applications, and providing mock university law interviews.
Essex Court Chambers is one of six Barristers’ Chambers who created a mentoring scheme for underrepresented groups at the Bar. The mentoring scheme, aims to support and encourage individuals from groups which are underrepresented at the Bar of England and Wales (and in particular the commercial bar) to pursue careers as barristers. Those underrepresented groups include women; people from minority ethnic backgrounds; people with disabilities; LGBT+ people; people who spent time in care; and people from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds.
Outreach to potential candidates to widen the pool of potential applicants, for instance sponsoring QMUL’s diversity event, providing speakers or participants to student events, providing mentors for students as part of the KCL Bar & Mooting Society’s Social Mobility Mentors Scheme, putting on student open days, assisting with the Bar Council’s Bar Placement Week, participating in the Inner Temple’s Pegasus Access and Support Scheme. In 2019, one of our current pupils, Lorraine Aboagye, spoke as a panelist for BME Legal, which caters to aspiring barristers from a black/minority and/or low socio-economic background, providing support, one-to-one mentoring and workshops on the pupillage process. The event was a workshop on networking tips and tricks, and general pupillage application advice.
Assisting with the work of COMBAR, the specialist bar association for the commercial bar, which has recently been supporting a series of diversity events with ‘Cake and Counsel’ in Birmingham and London with an emphasis on informal networking with aspiring lawyers. Several members of chambers are involved in COMBAR’s governance, and Bibek Mukherjee is a member of the Junior COMBAR Committee.
Annual Student Open Day
Essex Court Chambers led the way in introducing an annual student open day, in addition to traditional mini-pupillages, as a way of running an event specifically focused on giving students an opportunity to learn about the different areas of the bar and the routes to the bar, the available scholarships and financial support and where they are encouraged to freely ask questions and meet current members of Chambers. This annual event has proved very popular, including attracting many students not yet studying law and attracting equal numbers of male and female students.
Members of Chambers regularly undertake pro bono work, including via the Bar Pro Bono Unit and the Employment Law Appeal Advice Scheme (“ELAAS”). Notable pro bono cases undertaken by members of Chambers include appearing in the Supreme Court in (1) Jivraj v Hashwani, in which the Supreme Court held that an arbitrator was not a person “employed” within the Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulations 2003; and (2) Bates van Winkelhof v Clyde & Co LLP, in which the Supreme Court held that members of limited liability partnerships are workers for the purposes of whistleblowing protection. Further information on pro-bono work undertaken by members of Essex Court Chambers can be found on individual members’ CVs. In addition to arguing cases pro bono, many members of Essex Court Chambers are individually involved in supporting charitable causes, including working with legal advice clinics and acting as trustees. In 2019 Essex Court Chambers was acknowledged as a Gold Patron of the Bar Pro Bono Unit.
XTop Tier Set Rankings
- London Bar Commercial litigation
- London Bar Fraud: civil
- London Bar International arbitration: counsel
- London Bar Public international law
- London Bar Banking and finance (including consumer credit)
- London Bar Company and partnership
- London Bar Employment
- London Bar Energy
- London Bar International arbitration: arbitrators
- London Bar Travel law (including jurisdictional issues)
- London Bar Shipping
- London Bar Commodities
- London Bar Insurance and reinsurance
- London Bar Administrative and public law (including elections)
- London Bar European Union law
- London Bar Environment
- London Bar Business and regulatory crime (including global investigations)
- London Bar Offshore
- London Bar IT and telecoms
- London Bar Civil liberties and human rights (including actions against the police)
- London Bar Media and entertainment (including art and cultural property)
- Regional Bar Set overviews: England and Wales
- London Bar Set overviews: England and Wales
- London Bar Tax: corporate and VAT/indirect tax