Stephen Atherton KC > Twenty Essex > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Twenty Essex

Work Department

  • Banking
  • Civil aspects of international and domestic commercial fraud
  • Company law
  • Domestic and international commercial litigation;
  • International and domestic corporate insolvency and restructuring
  • Personal insolvency


Stephen’s practice comprises of international and domestic corporate insolvency and restructuring, company law, civil aspects of international and domestic commercial fraud, personal insolvency, banking, general offshore and international commercial litigation, and international and domestic asset tracing.

He has considerable experience in commercial litigation, civil fraud and contentious insolvency proceedings in the UK, Hong Kong, Brunei Darussalam, Malaysia, Singapore, the Cayman Islands, Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands (BVI), Jersey, Guernsey, Samoa and the Isle of Man.

Stephen is admitted to the Bar of the Eastern Caribbean (BVI). He is also called to the Bars of Bermuda, the Cayman Islands, the Isle of Man and Samoa for specific cases. Stephen has rights of audience in Brunei Darussalam for specific cases.

He was named as Insolvency/Corporate Restructuring Silk of the year at the Chambers Bar Awards 2014.

Stephen has also provided expert evidence on English, Bermuda, BVI and Cayman Islands law for use in foreign proceedings, including proceedings in Singapore, Hong Kong, New Hampshire and the Netherlands.

Lawyer Rankings

London Bar > Insolvency

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 4

Stephen Atherton KCTwenty Essex ‘Stephen is clearly an expert on insolvency.‘

London Bar > Company

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 3

Stephen Atherton KCTwenty Essex ‘Able to explain the law in a very straightforward and simple way, both orally and in writing.’

London Bar > Commercial litigation

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 6

Stephen Atherton KC – Twenty Essex ‘What sets him apart is that he is able to explain the law in a very straightforward and simple way (both orally and in writing) which my clients (who are not familiar with common law insolvency law) can easily understand.’

Twenty Essex is a ‘ go-to set for substantial commercial disputes, particularly with an international angle‘. Clients appreciate its ‘good strength in depth and a dazzling array of legal talent,‘ who bring experience of handling the largest cases. Notable instructions include Abdulhameed Dhia Jafar v The GHF Group Limited and GHF General Partner Limited, a case arising from the collapse of the Abraaj emerging markets private equity house, in which Stephen Atherton KC  is leading Sarah Tresman for GHF, which sits within the Abraaj fund structure. Another major case involving several members is PJSC National Bank Trust; PJSC Otkritie Bank Financial Corporation v Boris Mints; Dmitry Mints; Alexander Mints; Igor Mints, a fraudulent conspiracy claim in relation to the restructuring of loans, with Philip Edey KC and Tresman representing Boris Mints and Duncan Matthews KC representing his son, Igor Mints.

London Bar > Fraud: civil

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 3

Stephen Atherton KCTwenty EssexClearly an expert on insolvency. But what sets him apart is that he is able to explain the law in a very straightforward and simple way – both orally and in writing – which lay clients can easily understand.’

The English Bar Offshore > The English Bar Offshore

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 2

Stephen Atherton KCTwenty EssexStephen really knows insolvency law inside out and is able to provide expert, comprehensive advice on very short notice.  Moreover, he is able to provide this advice in a clear and layman friendly manner.’   

Twenty Essex are well known for their fraud, insolvency, banking and financial services based casework. Members are often involved in cases with parties from Asia who have their companies structured through offshore vehicles. Stephen Atherton KC is the joint Head of Chambers and has a practice encompassing areas such as international and domestic corporate insolvency, restructuring and company law. Tony Beswetherick KC works on cases with a strong international element, with experience of cross-border issues arising in connection with foreign insolvencies. Sarah Tresman is a renowned junior for offshore work, having spent three years at the Cayman Islands as a litigation attorney before returning to London and has featured in cases such as Abdulhameed Dhia Jafar v The GHF Group Limited and GHF General Partner Limited, a case that is part of the fall-out from the collapse of emerging markets private equity house Abraaj.