Philip Riches KC > Twenty Essex > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Twenty Essex

Work Department

  • Banking and financial services
  • Civil fraud and asset tracing
  • Commercial disputes
  • Commodities
  • Energy and natural resources
  • International arbitration
  • Jurisdiciton, conflicts and enforcement
  • Private international law
  • Public international law
  • Shipping


Philip is recognised as a leading barrister in international commercial dispute resolution. He appears regularly in the English courts and in international arbitrations in England and overseas.

Philip has a strong practice in complex, high-value commercial disputes across a range of business sectors. His work has been particularly focused in recent years on civil fraud disputes, often requiring urgent injunction applications, energy disputes and disputes relating to the enforcement of foreign arbitration awards. Philip’s practice frequently involves state parties or state-owned entities, in both commercial and investment treaty disputes.

Philip is regularly instructed as an expert in foreign proceedings, particularly on issues of English arbitration law.

He accepts appointments as an arbitrator, with experience as an ICC and as an SCC arbitrator. He has also been admitted to the Bar of the East Caribbean Supreme Court, British Virgin Islands and to the Bars of The Cayman Islands and St Kitts and Nevis (on an ad hoc basis).


Spanish (proficient); French (proficient); Mandarin (conversational)

Lawyer Rankings

London Bar > Commodities

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 5

Philip Riches KCTwenty Essex ‘A really approachable KC who gets stuck in and comes up with creative arguments.’

London Bar > Shipping

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 5

Philip Riches KC – Twenty Essex

Praised as a ‘premier set in shipping and commodities with strength in depth at all levels’, Twenty Essex  supports clients in disputes across the whole gamut of maritime matters. Timothy Hill KC, Alex Carless, and Michal Hain all acted on the CMA CGM Libra, which proceeded to the Supreme Court in 2021 and held that a defective passage plan renders a vessel unseaworthy. Elsewhere, Timothy Young KC acted for the Spanish government in London Steam-Ship Owners’ Mutual Insurance Association Ltd v Spain opposite Alexander Thompson; the case concerns one of the largest oil spills in Europe caused by the sinking of the Prestige off the coast of Galicia in 2002. Henry Byam-Cook KC and Philip Riches KC continue to receive instructions on high-profile disputes, with the former involved in two cases arising out of the insolvency of a trading company and a subsequent ship arrest which will be heard concurrently in the Commercial Court. Oliver Caplin, who specialises in dry shipping, has also had a strong year, including acting as sole counsel against silks.

London Bar > Energy

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 4

Philip Riches KCTwenty Essex ‘He is hardworking and creative, with an ability to get to grips quickly with complex factual matters.’