Michael is a senior member of the Commercial Litigation team in Southampton. He assists clients in resolving complex contractual and commercial disputes. In addition, Michael acts for clients in claims against professionals in all areas.
Main areas of practice
Michael’s main area of practice is related to a wide variety of commercial litigation and professional negligence. Most of Michael’s work involves significant claims in the High Court with cases also in the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court. Michael has developed particular expertise in negligence, insurance law, regulatory law and intellectual property disputes.
Michael acts for a broad range of clients from individuals to corporate clients including listed companies and well-known brands.
Michael is experienced in advising clients on a wide range of professional negligence issues, cases of note include:
- Conducting a claim in relation to an accountant’s failure to advise on a number of complex partnership taxation issues.
- Acting in relation to a claim against a top 50 firm of accountant in relation to advice given relating to the computation of group company basic corporation tax banding. The claim included losses over a period of 15 years.
- In addition, to claims against accountancy firms Michael has acted on substantial claims against property agents including a negligence claim in excess of £50m in relation to the mismanagement by a leading firm of property agents in relation to a substantial flagship property in the centre of London.
- Michael has also acted on numerous claims against solicitors ranging from conveyancing issues including restrictive covenants and planning issues to issues relating to company commercial matters and contractual drafting.
General commercial litigation
Michael has a broad range of litigation experience in all courts including the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court. His litigation case load varies from without notice injunctions to protect client assets to long-running cases involving complex facts and legal argument. Cases of note include:
- Acting for the SRA in the High Court, Court of Appeal and Supreme Court case of AIG v Woodman  UKSC 18. This is the leading case in respect of aggregation in Solicitors’ Professional Indemnity Insurance.
- Acting in Godiva Mortgages v Travelers Insurance Company and others  EWHC 3687 (Comm) involving a successful application by the Law Society in both its representational capacity and regulatory capacity to intervene into proceedings. This case was listed as one of The Lawyer’s top 20 cases of 2014.
Michael read law at Leicester University gaining a First-Class Honours degree. He completed his legal studies in Nottingham. Michael qualified in 2005 and spent eight years at Russell-Cooke in London before relocating to the South Coast.
- The Law Society Advocacy Section
- The Solicitors' Association for Higher Court Advocates (SAHCA)
- The London Solicitors Litigation Association
- The Association of Regulatory and Disciplinary Lawyers
Within a long history of regulatory experience Michael has worked for a number of regulators including the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), his work includes:
- Acting for the SRA in the case of Wingate & Anor v The Solicitors Regulation Authority  EWCA Civ 366 (07 March 2018). Two appeals to the Court of Appeal in relation to the distinction between dishonesty and a lack of integrity.
- Andrew Roy Williams v The Law Society of England and Wales  EWHC 2302 (Ch)
Administrative / public law
- In the past year Michael has advised several charities in respect of judicial review applications following the cessation of funding by local authorities and/or the termination of projects. Michael also advises on the closely linked area of public procurement and successfully challenged a number of procurement processes undertaken by local authorities.
Michael is a solicitor advocate with Higher Rights of Audience. As an advocate, he has represented clients at numerous hearings including interim hearings and full trials (including small claims, fast track and multi-track).
Insights by Michael
The High Court has recently handed down its decision on a professional negligence claim against a top 100 Law Firm in Cardiff and London, Hugh James: Hanbury & Anor v Hugh...Read More
A 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. SAAMCO is commonly...Read More
The Supreme Court has handed down an important judgment in relation to the defence of negligence claims based on the loss of a chance. The case is significant because it...Read More