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Simon Atkinson

Call: 2011   

+44 (0)20 7306


Commercial disputes comprise a significant proportion of Simon’s work. Instructions range from small consumer disputes to multi-party, multi-jurisdictional litigation. He acts both in his own right and as a junior as part of a larger team. He has a particular interest in cases involving civil fraud, company disputes, asset-tracing and cross-border issues and disputes with a Middle Eastern element.

Notable instructions include:

  • Acting as junior Counsel in Asturion Fondation v Alibrahim [2019] EWHC 275 (Ch); [2020] EWCA Civ 32. In these ongoing proceedings, Simon is instructed by Simmons & Simmons and Lalive for Ms Alibrahim, a wife of the late King Fahd of Saudi Arabia, in proceedings brought by a Liechtenstein foundation seeking to set aside a conveyance of property in “Billionaire’s Row”. The litigation raises questions of Liechtenstein and Saudi law. The Court of Appeal judgment is an authoritative restatement on the law relating to abuse of process for “warehousing” litigation.
  • Acting (with Clare Stanley QC) in Interactive Technology Corporation Ltd v Ferster [2017] EWHC 1510 (Ch); [2017] EWHC 1799 (Ch), which concerned the beneficial ownership of an offshore, web-based business and the relief to be granted to a company whose director had been found liable for dishonest breaches of his fiduciary duties.
  • Acting for trustees of an employee benefit trust in relation to the proposed sale of the shares in the company which formed the principal asset of the trust.
  • Acting for members of a private company limited by guarantee who were purportedly expelled under the disciplinary procedures contained in the company’s articles of association.
  • Acting (with James Ayliffe QC) in proceedings concerning a purported joint venture development of land. This ongoing litigation concerns two claims, one a derivative action and the other a direct action, brought by the representatives of one of the parties to the alleged joint venture.
  • Acting (with Nikki Singla QC) for various director defendants of a Jersey-based corporate trustee in a two-day mediation. The Jersey litigation concerned alleged breaches of trust and directors’ common law and fiduciary duties as directors of a corporate trustee of a family settlement.
  • Appearing (with John Wardell QC) in High Court litigation where both parties had brought unfair prejudice petitions under s. 994 of the Companies Act 2006. The case concerned various sale purchase agreements relating to a technology joint venture. The litigation raised, amongst other things, issues of international law, including the existence of constitutional and customary values in foreign countries and their impact
    on disclosure obligations in English courts.
  • Acting (with Joanna Smith QC) in arbitration proceedings concerning a multi-million-pound construction project in the Middle East.
  • Instructed in a case concerning the purported forfeiture of a business tenancy in the Dubai International Finance Centre for non-payment of rent and relief under the DIFC Real Property Law and DIFC Law of Damages and Remedies.
  • Advising on the extent of third-party disclosure obligations in unfair prejudice petitions.
  • Instructed in a landlord and tenant dispute concerning the repairing obligations of high velocity lifts in a newly-built high-rise tower in London.
  • Acting for a business intending to offer will-writing and probate services in relation to regulatory requirements under the Legal Services Act 2007.
  • Appearing for the claimants in Cosmetic Warriors Ltd v Ltd [2014] FSR 31; [2014] EWHC 1316 (Ch), a European Community trademark dispute.
  • Acting for a cosmetics company in relation to its international distribution agreements and alleged breaches of those agreements by the company’s overseas distributors.
  • Appearing for a defendant in proceedings concerning the sale of allegedly defective switchable transparent glass LCD panels.
  • Acting for a defendant in proceedings concerning an alleged joint venture between business partners. Accounts and inquiries were sought as were the repayment of monies allegedly loaned and the recovery of other luxury assets said to be held as part of the alleged joint venture.
  • Acting for a project management business in relation to a claim for breach of contract arising out of a proposed redevelopment of substantial commercial premises and the funding arrangements to be provided by a local authority.
  • Acting in professional negligence proceedings brought by the purchaser of a long leasehold of commercial premises against its conveyancing solicitors in respect of an alleged failure by the solicitors to advise properly in relation to planning matters relating to the property.
  • Instructed in a case concerning the validity of two purported buy-backs of shares in a private company which buy-backs did not comply with the formalities set out in the Companies Act 1985 and the Companies Act 2006.
  • Acting for the managers of a commercial premises following damage to the property and its contents having been sustained and a dispute arising as to whose responsibility it was to insure the contents of the premises under the terms of the service contract agreed between the various stakeholders.
  • Acting for a sub-contractor concerning a potential claim for breach of contract against the head contractor in relation to support services provided on behalf of a local authority.