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Maitland Chambers continues to be considered one of the Bar's first and finest ports of call for technically complex chancery matters, with clients benefiting from an impressively deep stable of elite silks and juniors. The set houses expertise across a full range of commercial work, with its barristers held in high esteem for their abilities in commercial litigation, as well as civil fraud, shareholder disputes and trusts work. "We use Maitland regularly because of the combination of intellectual rigour and teamwork," explains one market commentator, with legal insiders adding that the set is "by far the best in its field."
Client service: "The clerks deserve special mention as they could not be more helpful. No task is too big or small." "Their clerks are very good. I can have a proper conversation with them, and they always get back to me." They are led by senior clerk John Wiggs.
A well-liked barrister with a broad practice, who regularly handles property, banking and professional negligence cases. He takes an intelligent and direct approach to the law, according to sources. McCluskey has particular experience of dealing with applications for freezing injunctions.
Strengths: "He's amazing. If I had to choose a junior I would always choose Alec, he never lets me down. He's good on paper and good on his feet, he's the whole package."
Recent work: Instructed on behalf of the claimants in Red Kite Management v Barclays Bank, following the alleged use of Red Kite's confidential information for Barclays' own trading purposes.
Andrew Ayres QC
An effective silk who is frequently instructed in matters across the spectrum of commercial chancery. He often handles civil fraud, fiduciary obligations and other financial transaction cases. His experience in the business and property law markets is a particular strength.
Strengths: "He is everything you would expect from a QC at a top set. He's got an unrivalled eye for detail, commercial awareness and he's as good as it gets on his feet in court – he's just an absolute natural."
Recent work: Instructed in a GBP9 million alleged MTIC fraud claim brought by the liquidator of an energy trading company.
Andrew Twigger QC
A strong advocate with a good appeals practice. His work is varied and encompasses company law, insolvency and civil fraud cases. He also acts in commercial arbitrations and mediations as well as offshore litigation.
Strengths: "He's the best QC I work with; he has high-level vision of how we can win the case."
Recent work: Instructed for the claimant in Blue Power Group v Eni Norge, a EUR500 million claim for breach of exclusivity, best endeavours and confidentiality clauses related to the potential use of the claimant's technology in an oilfield operated by the defendant.
A well-liked junior with a substantial commercial chancery practice. He has a reputation for working hard on large and complex cases, including the much-watched Article 50 litigation, and is noted for his prowess in shareholder and partnership disputes. His practice also has a strong international element.
Strengths: "A really excellent junior." "He is not a silk but he's like a silk in every other way. He's an extremely effective and very bright barrister who fits in seamlessly with the whole team."
Recent work: Appeared on behalf of the respondent in Tugushev v Orlov, a dispute concerning the ownership of an international fishing business run by the Norebo Group.
Catherine Addy QC
A thorough and technically able member of the Chancery Bar, who has a particularly strong insolvency and company law practice. She has advised and acted for a number of government departments, including HMRC, the former Treasury Solicitor and the Attorney-General.
Strengths: "The most erudite and sophisticated lawyer I've come across. She has a manner with judges that I've rarely seen with other counsel." "The quality of advice and commitment to service are outstanding and engender absolute confidence in the client and those instructing."
Recent work: Instructed by HMRC to handle appeals before the Upper Tribunal concerning tax liabilities related to investment schemes run by Ingenious Media.
Catherine Newman QC
Highly respected silk with a diverse and substantial commercial chancery practice, held in particularly high esteem for her well-honed skills in advocacy work. She makes regular appearances in courts up to the Supreme Court and Privy Council, alongside considerably strong abilities in offshore disputes work.
Strengths: "I think she is a very clever, tactical lawyer who's very experienced. Her ability is to cut through a case, right down to the nub of the facts, and she's really great with clients."
Recent work: Instructed by Red Kite to bring claims against Barclays Bank over the alleged use of the claimant's confidential information for Barclays' own trading purposes.
Christopher Pymont QC
An established silk with an impressive depth of experience in commercial chancery matters. He is highly sought after for company, property and commercial work, and is often instructed on high-profile, high-value and complex cases.
Strengths: "A magnificent advocate." "He has a brilliant strategic brain and a commanding courtroom presence. He's quietly spoken but authoritative." "A brilliant mind and a brilliant barrister."
Recent work: Acted on behalf of the claimant in United Co Rusal v Crispian Investments, in a claim to stop the sale of shares worth USD700 million in breach of rights of first refusal under the shareholder agreement.
David Mumford QC
A well-liked and much-respected silk with a broad commercial chancery practice. He is regularly instructed on complex and high-value matters, including civil fraud, shareholder disputes and jurisdictional challenges.
Strengths: "He's absolutely excellent; a very clear thinker and a sensible adviser." "He's collaborative, great at working as part of a team, very diligent and a good tactical thinker."
Recent work: Instructed by Tesco to defend civil claims brought by institutional shareholders arising out of its accounting misstatement scandal.
Edmund Cullen QC
Handles company and professional negligence cases as part of a broad commercial chancery practice. Several of his cases have a media and entertainment or IP element to them. His work includes cases concerning the enforcement of guarantees and security, breaches of warranty and asset tracing.
Strengths: "A cool, calm advocate. You always want him on your side. He's very astute and good at helping the client see the bigger picture." "His advice is comprehensive, decisive and quickly delivered."
Recent work: Instructed by a tax adviser and alleged shadow director in a GBP35 million claim against the directors and advisers of a property investment company over alleged fraud and conspiracy.
George Hayman QC
A respected silk whose commercial chancery practice includes a depth of experience in civil fraud, company and contractual matters. He is a particularly fine choice of counsel for matters in the British Virgin Islands, as he is called to the Bar in that jurisdiction.
Strengths: "A measured and responsive advocate who never irritates the court."
Recent work: Represented Balfour and Sochin in their defence of a charter party claim involving four vessels operating in the Caspian Sea.
James Aldridge QC
An effective and tenacious silk whose practice spans the full range of commercial chancery. He has a particular depth of expertise in contractual disputes, real property and insolvency work.
Strengths: "He has a very effective manner with the court."
Has a broad commercial chancery practice that encompasses insolvency, property, company law and civil fraud cases. He acts both on his own and under the leadership of well-known chancery silks. He also handles trust litigation and landlord and tenant-related matters.
Strengths: "He's very thoughtful and very clever, he's everything you want in a junior and a barrister."
Recent work: Acted for Blue Power Group in a EUR500 million claim against Eni Norge, alleging breach of exclusivity, best endeavours and confidentiality clauses related over the potential use of Blue Power's technology in an oilfield operated by Eni.
Mark Cunningham QC
A strong advocate with a straightforward approach to clients, who is praised for his superior cross-examination skills. He acts in a variety of substantial commercial chancery matters including insolvency, company law and tax matters.
Strengths: "He's an excellent chancery silk, providing pragmatic advice."
Matthew Collings QC
A respected QC with a litigious and advisory commercial chancery practice that is strong on company law and insolvency cases. Sources describe him as a good litigator who is excellent at cases where the client is in a tight spot. He also has extensive experience of working on international matters in Hong Kong, the Channel Islands, the Bahamas, Jamaica and Iceland.
Strengths: "He has a very impressive reputation at the Bar. He's a go-to man for tricky appellate work and is a name known by everybody at the Commercial Chancery Bar. He's a magnanimous opponent."
Recent work: Instructed by Blackpool Football Club in a Court of Appeal decision arising out of a contractual dispute with JSC Baltic Bank concerning the development of a new stand at the club's stadium.
Michael Gibbon QC
A former investment banker whose practice includes complex insolvency and tax matters. He is regarded by peers as a pleasant and forensically-minded individual. Gibbon has particular experience of acting in cases involving financial instruments, insolvency and restructuring, as well as analysis of financial information.
Strengths: "He has an astonishing intellect and an immensely authoritative manner in court. He explains things so clearly and directly and gets a phenomenal result."
Recent work: Represented defendant Turkish airline Onur Air against claims brought by liquidators of the tour operator Goldtrail based on alleged dishonest assistance in relation to alleged breach of duty and misfeasance by the company's owner and sole director.
Although particularly praised for his insolvency practice, he also has expertise in fraud, company law and international commercial litigation. Sources praise his advocacy as well as his technical capabilities. Kalfon has experience of acting in disputes in the Cayman Islands, the BVI and Saint Kitts and Nevis.
Strengths: "He's extremely knowledgeable and someone who I would expect a very strong fight from, regardless of the merits of the case."
Recent work: Acted for a company director accused of multiple breaches of fiduciary duty and acts of deceit against shareholders.
Has a general commercial chancery practice and is highly effective at insolvency and company law cases. She is often instructed in substantial disputes relating to partnerships, insolvency and property.
Strengths: "Exceptionally responsive junior who is very approachable and user-friendly."
Recent work: Instructed in a breach of warranty claim arising out of the sale of an aerospace manufacturing company to a subsidiary of the Better Capital turnaround and restructuring fund. The case involved allegations of misstated and/or manipulated accounts.
Siward Atkins QC
A respected new silk with a broad array of commercial chancery work. He is frequently sought after for civil fraud, insolvency, partnership, real estates and trusts matters.
Strengths: "He's a classic chancery barrister who is able to lend his hand to all chancery matters."
Recent work: Appeared in Kangol v Toll Group to defend the group's finance director against allegations he prepared accounts for the business fraudulently in order to inflate the sale price.
Thomas Grant QC
A well-liked silk who is respected for his advocacy and capable advice. He is co-editor of Sweet & Maxwell's 'Civil Fraud'. Grant is regularly instructed in a wide range of general chancery and commercial litigation including professional negligence and property claims.
Strengths: "He's a fearsome opponent." "We really enjoyed working with him; he was flamboyant and effective."
Has a particular strength in banking and civil fraud cases, as well as property and company law matters. Sources describe him as a clever lawyer with the ability to win the trust of a judge and to work well in a team.
Strengths: "He's extremely bright and hard-working."
Recent work: Appeared unled on behalf of a group of claimants in the Chancery Division, arising out of their investment in an allegedly fraudulent fold-based investment scheme.
A recognised commercial chancery specialist with a depth of experience in insolvency, company, banking and trusts matters. He is also noted for his work in alternative dispute resolution.
Strengths: "He's a technically sound and excellent advocate, with attention to detail." "He's responsive, user-friendly, thorough and extremely knowledgeable."
Recent work: Acted for the liquidators of SGBH Finance in claims seeking to recover millions of pounds of company funds allegedly misappropriated by its former directors in a tax avoidance scheme.
A popular junior with an extensive practice covering the full breadth of commercial chancery work. He is regularly instructed on civil fraud matters and is noted for his expertise in offshore and international work. He is a particularly fine choice of counsel for conflict of laws and jurisdiction issues.
Strengths: "He's a safe pair of hands and very hard-working. He's bright, rolls his sleeves up and gets stuck in."
Recent work: Appeared as sole counsel for the Watchstone Group in Watchstone Group v Sadiq and others, a GBP2 million breach of warranty claim arising out of the acquisition of a business from the defendants.