Richard Portlock Partner

Photograph of Richard Portlock

Contact Details

“Leading Individual in Litigation and Dispute Resolution. Main areas of work are commercial litigation and arbitration, professional negligence litigation, insurance coverage disputes and pensions-related disputes.”

Legal 500 2018

“Richard Portlock has an impressive portfolio of clients and extensive experience acting for claimants in professional indemnity cases, involving lawyers, property professionals and financial advisers. A market commentator says: "Richard is a very competent and knowledgeable individual and has a great reputation behind him."”

Chambers and Partners 2019
Richard specialises in professional liability, including negligence and cases involving dishonesty, fraud and breach of fiduciary duty.

Main areas of practice

As well as professional negligence, he also has expertise in general commercial litigation, in which he has commercial court and arbitration experience, insurance coverage disputes and cases relating to pensions and financial services. His dispute resolution experience encompasses litigation up to the Court of Appeal, international arbitration and mediation.

Significant experience

His Court of Appeal cases include Taplin Ltd v Guyer Ensor Byfield (valuation of the lost chance, unreported) and Westbury v Sampson (2001). He has handled a large number of cases involving allegations of dishonesty, fraud and breach of fiduciary duty, as well as negligence. Richard's court practice areas also include general commercial litigation, in which he has Commercial Court experience, insurance coverage disputes and cases relating to pensions and financial services.

Other expertise

Pensions: acting in pensions disputes for companies, professionals, insurers, individuals and trustees for well over 20 years. In relation to occupational pension schemes, Richard acts and advises in particular in matters relating to claims for and compromises of statutory debt, the construction and rectification of scheme documentation and professional negligence claims against pensions advisers and trustees. Richard led the team acting for the representative beneficiary to trial of the rectification case Drake Insurance v HR Trustees and Another.

In 2001 he was appointed to the Professional Indemnity Panel of PASS (Pension Advisers Support System Ltd).

Public sector: acted in judicial review cases concerning, for example, local authority grant funding and financial services as well as in commercial disputes relating to public bodies. Richard also advises and acts for private sector clients and public bodies in public procurement law challenges.

Risk management: special interest in risk management in professional firms, on which he speaks at seminars and conferences.

Solicitors Regulations Authority: In 2006, Richard was appointed as an Intervention Agent for the Solicitors Regulations Authority.

Expertise

Richard’s Blog

Accountants sued for negligence for failure to advise of a change in the law

We highlight a case that clearly demonstrates why professionals need to advise their clients of changes in the law or legislation if they have promised to do so.

Articles by Richard

QSRC LTD (‘QSRC’), Regina (on the Application of) -V- National health service Commissioning Board (‘NHS England’) and another

News

Judgment was handed down on Monday 21 December in the first case to consider the NHS (Competition, Procurement and Patient Choice) No 2 Regulations 2013, and in which case Blake Morgan acted for the defendant, NHS England.

Claiming costs of mitigation as damages

Article

We consider a recent solicitor's negligence case, which provides useful guidance on how to assess litigation costs as damages when a mitigation defence is successful.

Related Knowledge & Resources

Supreme Court rules on meaning of ‘unfavourable treatment’

Matthew Smith discusses a recent Supreme Court decision that confirmed a common-sense approach to the meaning of ‘unfavourable treatment’ under section 15 of the Equality Act 2010.

Manchester Building Society v Grant Thornton UK LLP: advice or information? SAAMCO explained

A recent Court of Appeal case in January 2019 has provided a useful analysis on using SAAMCO to distinguish between 'advice' and 'information' cases involving financial professional negligence.

What employers need to know about paying life assurance benefits

What should you consider when paying out life assurance benefits – and what are the implications if you get it wrong? Adrian Lamb, Legal Director in our Pensions and Benefits team considers the issues involved for employers and trustees.

Recovering outstanding berthing fees – a guide for marinas and boatyards

Blake Morgan provides a helpful guide for Marinas and Boat Yards on recovering outstanding berthing fees.

Funding commercial litigation

Our Dispute Resolution team guide you through the options for funding commercial disputes.