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Emer Murphy

Call: 2009   

+44 (0)20 7306 0102emurphy@wilberforce.co.uk

Commercial

Emer has a broad business and commercial practice, and provides drafting, advisory and advocacy services in a range of commercial sectors.

Emer was ranked as ‘Up and Coming’ in the Chancery Commercial (London) field by Chambers and Partners 2018, and was described as ‘very bright, helpful and practical’ and as ‘an effective advocate who produces especially attractive paperwork’.  The same publication in 2017 described Emer as ‘a thinker and a doer… she adds real value and makes good contributions’.

Emer is a member of the Commercial Bar Association and the Commercial Fraud Lawyers Association.

Notable cases include the following:

Clutterbuck v Cleghorn [2015] EWHC 2558 (Ch), [2017] EWCA Civ 137, [2018] EWHC 2125 (Ch)

  • As a junior to Jonathan Seitler QC, Emer acted for the defendant (representing a deceased’s estate) in this offshoot of the Clutterbuck v Al Amoudi case (discussed below)
  • The claimants alleged that the deceased entered into and subsequently breached various joint ventures relating to numerous expensive properties in West London.
  • The defendant’s legal team successfully had the majority of the claim struck out as an abuse of process relying on the principle in Aldi Stores [2008] 1 WLR 748, as the claimants had failed to bring their claim with other similar claims against Ms Al Amoudi.  The Court of Appeal upheld the striking out of the majority of the claimants’ case in March 2017.
  • A three-week trial of the remaining elements of the claimants’ claim took place in the Chancery Division in June 2018, and raised issues of fraudulent misrepresentation, contractual interpretation, estoppel by convention and proof of loss. Jonathan Seitler QC and Emer again emerged victorious, and the claimants’ claims were dismissed in their entirety.

Confidential (2018)

  • This arbitration concerned a complex tripartite agreement relating to the production and sale of tyres.
  • Emer assisted Alan Gourgey QC with various aspects of the case, which raised issues relating to the meaning of ‘fitness for purpose’ and ‘merchantable quality’.

Confidential (2018)

  • This case concerned a complex joint venture-style agreement between a landowner and a developer, in relation to a prominent development site in London.
  • Valuable planning permission was achieved for high-rise development on the site, and the land was sold with the benefit of this planning permission for more than £100m.
  • The landowner and developer then disagreed as to how the profit arising from this sale should be split, with the parties divided in various respects as to the proper interpretation of the complex (and repeatedly varied) agreement between them.
  • The case settled in 2018 following a successful mediation.
  • Emer acted a junior to Jonathan Seitler QC.

Clutterbuck v Al Amoudi [2014] EWHC 383 (Ch), [2015] EWCA Civ 1593, [2017] EWHC 1127 (Ch)

  • Emer successfully represented Sarah Al Amoudi, dubbed ‘the Vamp in the Veil’ by the Daily Mail, against two property developers who alleged that Ms Amoudi duped them out of millions of pounds of cash and property.
  • Emer acted as a junior to Jonathan Seitler QC at a four-week trial in the Chancery Division involving over 30 witnesses and addressing numerous allegations of fraud.
  • In October 2015, the claimants said they had new evidence that proved that Ms Al Amoudi was an imposter. Emer and Jonathan successfully represented Ms Al Amoudi in the Court of Appeal, where the applications to rely on this evidence and for permission to appeal were refused.
  • In February 2017, acting on her own account, Emer successfully represented Ms Al Amoudi in resisting the Claimants’ application to vary or revoke the substantial costs award made against them, sought on the basis of further evidence allegedly casting doubt on Ms Al Amoudi’s background.  The application was dismissed in its entirety.

Confidential (2017)

  • This action related to a substantial mixed-use property in North London, held by a company which was jointly owned by two wealthy families and later sold.
  • Emer (acting as a junior to James Ayliffe QC) acted for a company associated with one of the families, alleging deceit and breach of fiduciary duty by the other family and its associated companies in relation to the sale of the property for several million pounds.

Abbar v SEDCO and others [2013] EWHC 1414 (Ch)

  • This case concerned the Pinnacle Tower, designed to be the tallest tower in the City of London, which (following a series of delays to its development) was later nicknamed ‘the Stump’.
  • The claim was brought by a disgruntled Middle Eastern investor who had advanced significant sums of money toward the development, and who alleged that he had been misled about the basis of his investment.
  • At a two-week trial in the High Court, acting as a junior to Ali Malek QC and Rupert Reed QC, Emer successfully represented the developer defendants.

Ackerman v Ackerman [2011] EWHC 2183 (Ch); [2012] 3 Costs L.O. 303

  • This case concerned an expert determination in the context of a bitterly-fought division of a very large family-owned property portfolio.
  • Emer assisted John Wardell QC and Andrew Mold on various aspects of this case, including successfully representing the defendants in their application for security for costs.