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James regularly acts in large and complex commercial disputes.

His recent cases include:

  • Acting (as junior to Joanna Smith QC) in Cavendish Square Holdings BV v Makdessi [2015] UKSC 67, [2015] 3 WLR 1373, the leading authority on contractual penalties.  James was part of the team acting for the successful appellant in its appeal to the Supreme Court, where a 7 justice panel held that neither of the clauses in issue in a multi-million pound business acquisition agreement were unenforceable penalties, redefining the test to do so.
  • Acting (as part of a cross-border team) in proceedings seeking a declaration as to the construction of voting rights in the articles of an AIM-listed company incorporated in the Isle of Man (Origo Partners Plc v Brooks Macdonald Asset Management Ltd).
  • Acting (as junior to James Ayliffe QC) in multi-million pound tri-partite litigation brought by a government agency in respect of a failure to destroy documents which were subsequently fraudulently misused. The claim raised a variety of issues in contract (including as to liability, causation, and remoteness), tort, bailment, conversion, and deceit.
  • Acting (as junior to Joanna Smith QC) in the defence of a liquidator accused of having sold millions of pounds worth of assets belonging to third parties (Euromex Ventures Ltd v BNP Paribas & Others [2013] EWHC 3007 (Ch)). The defence was wholly successful, and the Claimants were ordered to pay indemnity costs.
  • Acting and advising in numerous breach of contract claims, both led and unled, and including in matters with an international element and where the governing law of the contract is not English law.
  • Acting (as junior to Martin Hutchings QC) in a claim for breach of contract and for breaches of duty of confidence arising out of a bid for a development site.