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Mark Stephens
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Mark is a commercial practitioner who specialises in employment and executive disputes, restraint of trade, banking and financial as well as insurance claims.

Known for his excellent inter-personal skills, Mark is experienced at acting at all levels of the judicial system (as well as at mediation) for both claimants and defendants, corporates and individuals.

Commercial Litigation

Mark deals with a wide variety of commercial disputes with a particular emphasis on actions upon guarantees and indemnities, restraint of trade, coverage and liability insurance-related cases and claims for and against institutional clients within the banking sector.  He has particular experience of injunctions and freezing injunctions.

Frequently such claims are linked to executive and employment disputes (which are dealt with in a separate part of his profile).

Relevant cases

  • Josa v White Water Recovery Ltd & Anor [2013] EWHC 4755 (QB) Acting for the claimant Mark successfully defended against an application to bring proceedings against a third party for a loan agreement involving the salvage of aircraft.
  • National Westminster Bank Plc v Lotay & Anor [2012] EWHC 1436 (QB) Mark acted for the defendant in a guarantees for a bank loan case and whether there was joint and several liability.

Employment & Executive Disputes

Mark has an extensive employment practice.  He is known for his involvement in complex executive and employment disputes and his work covers discrimination, unfair dismissal, whistleblowing, redundancy and breach of contract and restrictive covenants involving breach of confidence.

He has particular experience in TUPE disputes and group actions and has advised and represented a number of surgeons in employment disputes against NHS trusts.

Mark is a member of the ELA.

Mark has also obtained permission to appeal in the case of Singh v Glass Express UKEATPA/0495/17/DM on 13.3.18 after a Rule 3(10) hearing.

Recent cases

  • Singh v Glass Express Midlands Ltd EAT June 2018: successful appeal in relation to a compensatory award which has in consequence been remitted to the ET.
  • Dr Hamid Mirab v Mentor Graphics (UK) Ltd  EAT January 2018: successful appeal confirming important point of principle – the significance of the internal appeal stage.  It is a rare example of the EAT confirming a first instance decision to have been perverse.
  • Smolarek v Tewin Bury Farm  EAT July 2017: multiple allegations of construction dismissal and discrimination.  Mark had all these claims dismissed and costs awarded to his clients, the respondents.
  • Wee Leong Lum v Bun Chan: Claim for misappropriation and diversion of business opportunities to a competing business.
  • Dr Muttukrishna Sathanandan v Barking, Havering & Redbridge NHS Trust: Mark acted for a renowned obstetric and gynaecological surgeon claiming breach of contract.  The claim was compromised following a finding of liability.
  • Singh v Singh Trustee Representative on behalf of Guru Nanak Gurdwara West Bromwich: EAT October 2016: claim by a former priest which was eventually struck out for breach of an order.  The EAT refused an appeal that the tribunal had erred in the exercise of its discretion.
  • Singh v Asian Care EAT 2014
  • Parker v SSAB Swedish Steel EAT/0170/12/SM
  • Jones v Collegiate Academy Trust EAT/0011/SM: Mark acted for the respondent in a case where it was determined that the Employment Tribunal had correctly directed itself as to a breach of implied term of trust and confidence. Further, it was entitled to conclude that the Claimant had not been constructively dismissed.

Franchising

Mark is experienced in handling franchise disputes.

  • Team 2 Clean Ltd v Maftei [2014] EWHC 2645 (QB) Acting for the claimant in a franchise case involving the grant of an injunction for the alleged breach of a non-solicitation agreement.
  • Advising franchisee members of a proposed group action founded on allegations of deliberate misrepresentation.
  • Advising both franchisees and franchisors upon the construction and enforceability of post-termination obligations.

Professional associations

  • ELA
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