Michael Furness > Chambers of Michael Furness QC > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Chambers of Michael Furness QC
Wilberforce Chambers
8 NEW SQUARE, LINCOLN'S INN
LONDON
WC2A 3QP
England

Position

Barrister; formerly first standing junior to the Inland Revenue in Chancery matters; appears regularly in the High Court and Court of Appeal, both for the government and for private clients; outside Revenue litigation, his practice concentrates on pension schemes, trusts, charities and professional negligence, principally in the fields of pensions and tax. Overseas, he has a substantial contentious and non-contentious trust practice mainly in Bermuda, and involving large family trusts. He also appears regularly in the courts of Hong Kong, including three appearances in the Court of Final Appeal.

Career

Called 1982; Lincoln’s Inn; QC 2000; deputy High Court judge 2004.

Memberships

Association of Pension Lawyers; Chancery Bar Association; Revenue Bar Association.

Education

Cambridge University (MA); Oxford University (BCL).

Lawyer Rankings

London Bar > Pensions

(Leading Silks) Ranked: Tier 2

Michael Furness QCWilberforce ChambersHugely experienced with an encyclopaedic knowledge of pensions law.

Considered the ‘pre-eminent set for pensions‘ by its clients, Wilberforce Chambers ‘is unrivalled in the area of pensions’, has ‘unparalleled strength-in-depth‘ and is ‘full of iron brains‘. In one standout instruction, Brian Green QC acted for the trustees of the BT Pension Scheme  on several issues affecting the pensions of 24,000 members and £2bn liabilities. Meanwhile, in the Court of Appeal, Michael Tennet QC was successful for British Airways in a claim that is considered important in clarifying the roles and responsibilities of trustees. Also of note, Michael Furness QC represents ITV In a case regarding the Box Clever Pension Scheme, which consider’s the television network’s liabilities for the scheme’s deficit.

London Bar > Charities

(Leading Silks) Ranked: Tier 2

Michael Furness QCWilberforce ChambersIs very responsive and knowledgeable.

Wilberforce Chambers continues to be involved in some complex and high-value matters across the charity sector. As an example of his expertise, Jonathan Davey QC is leading in the significant case of Life Services Ltd v Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs, which is an important test case about the taxation of charities and similar entities. Michael Furness QC has a ‘good reputation‘ among instructing solicitors for charities-related work, aided by his ‘quick response time and detailed knowledge‘ of the sector.

London Bar > Offshore

(Leading Silks) Ranked: Tier 1

Michael Furness QCWilberforce ChambersHugely experienced, with exceptional knowledge in the specialist area of contentious trusts.

London Bar > Private client: personal tax

(Leading Silks) Ranked: Tier 2

Michael Furness QCWilberforce ChambersProvides incisive, common sense and realistic strategic advice in difficult situations.

London Bar > Private client: trusts and probate

(Leading Silks) Ranked: Tier 1

Michael Furness QCWilberforce ChambersHugely experienced with exceptional knowledge in the specialist area of contentious trusts.

London Bar > Professional negligence

(Leading Silks) Ranked: Tier 3

Michael Furness QCWilberforce ChambersOne of the finest technical lawyers and highly respected by judges and opponents alike.