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Phillip Patterson
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Phillip has a wide-ranging commercial and insolvency practice with experience of high value and complex disputes in a variety of courts and tribunals.

He has particular expertise in technical company law issues, which makes him an obvious choice for claims involving allegations of mismanagement and breach of duty as well as shareholder disputes. Phillip handles a wide variety of banking and financial services disputes where his postgraduate qualification in banking law gives him a decided edge.

A significant proportion of Phillip’s current and recent work concerns corporate and personal insolvency, a field in which Phillip is fast becoming a go-to junior for a range of matters.

Phillip also has experience of consumer contract issues, professional negligence claims and a variety of private client disputes.

Phillip worked as a support counsel, a judicial assistant and a report draftsman on the high-profile Al-Sweady Public Inquiry and was seconded to a leading London law firm for a period in 2015.

Phillip volunteers for the City Law School pro bono scheme assisting litigants in person in relation to winding up petitions. He speaks and understands French to a reasonable level.

Banking & Finance

Phillip has particular expertise in relation to banking and financial services work having obtained a postgraduate qualification in banking law.

Phillip acts both for and against lenders in relation to disputes concerning mortgage and investment agreements, as well as a range of security documents. He has a significant amount of recent experience in matters concerning guarantees and indemnities.

Recent work:

  • Advising a company director who made erroneous payments to a debtor of the company by way of mistaken payment from a personal account.
  • Representing the defendant in a claim brought by a commercial lender who borrowed money to invest in a Government Private Finance Initiative.
  • Representing a lender in a claim concerning the interpretation of a previously untested and novel mortgage agreement.
  • Representing the defendant in a claim brought by a lender for sums allegedly owed under a personal guarantee.
  • Representing the owners of a safety deposit box in a claim against the bank at which the box was deposited.
  • Jurisdiction challenge in a claim between Cinnamon European Structured Credit Fund and a Portuguese bank arising out of the securitisation of a mortgage portfolio. The proceedings involved the application of the EC Council Regulation on the recognition and enforcement of judgments in civil and commercial matters.
  • Recovery of “client money” held by Lehman Brothers. The matter went to the Court of Appeal and gave Phillip considerable exposure to the regulatory framework of financial services in the UK.
  • Chunilal v Merrill Lynch [2010] EWHC 1467 (Comm): a banker’s entitlement to a discretionary bonus.
  • Representing the defendant and counterclaimant in a high-value dispute concerning alleged breaches of an agreement to loan money to a start-up company in the technology and innovation sector.

Civil Fraud & Asset Tracing

Fraud, asset-tracing and recovery has always formed a major part of Phillip’s practice and he has experience of fraudulent misrepresentation, knowing receipt, constructive trust and restitution claims. He was involved in the leading case of Sinclair v Versailles.

Recent work:

  • Holyoake v Savills plc: Representing high-profile property investor in relation to an application for pre-action disclosure against the large global real-estate services provider. The application concerns allegations of fraudulent conspiracy and breaches of fiduciary duty.
  • Mellor v Partridge: a fraudulent misrepresentation claim in relation to the sale of a well-known antiques company to a consortium.
  • Defended tracing and knowing receipt claims by the alleged victims of a high profile Saudex fraud.
  • Advising the adopted son of an individual who died intestate in relation to a misrepresentation claim. Phillip’s client is seeking to rescind an agreement by which he purportedly waived his rights under the intestacy at a significant undervalue.
  • Advising and representing a commercial user of electricity seeking to recover secret commissions obtained by an agent.
  • Representing a client seeking to recover sums invested in various commercial ventures as a result of the undue influence of her former partner.
  • Benedetti v Sawiris[2010] EWCA Civ 1427: defending a restitution claim in the Court of Appeal brought by an individual seeking payment for services rendered assisting in the acquisition of an Italian telecommunications company. The litigation ultimately reached the Supreme Court and is considered a leading authority on the valuation of quantum meruit claims.
  • Sinclair v Versailles [2011] EWCA Civ 347: A claim by a company for the recovery of sums acquired by a director in breach of fiduciary duty. The judgment of the Court of Appeal was the leading authority on the nature of constructive trust claims for the recovery of bribes and secret commissions until it was overruled by the Supreme Court in 2014.

Commercial Litigation

Commercial work lies at the heart of Phillip’s practice. Whilst a large proportion of his caseload involves larger claims where he acts as part of a team, he is also highly experienced acting as sole counsel.

As illustrated below, his expertise is wide-ranging and covers a wide variety of sectors from the airline industry and investment vehicles to the building trade and the service sector. He has niche experience in consumer law including group and representative litigation and misselling claims. He also handles general professional negligence work.

His specific experience in relation to insolvency, banking and financial services, company law claims and civil fraud is dealt with elsewhere in his profile.

Phillip is a regular contributor to the Practical Law Dispute Resolution Blog and has recently written articles on the decisions of Snowden J and the Court of Appeal in the Premier Motorauctions case concerning security for costs.

Recent work:

  • Advising the CEO of a company involved in a £200m dispute with noteholders in the Commercial Court.
  • Representing a start-up company involved in litigation seeking substantial damages from a lender for breach of a loan agreement incurring large consequential losses.
  • Advising an investment agent in relation to potential claims against an investor for breach of confidentiality agreements made in support of services provided in the acquisition of a mining company and its assets in New Zealand.
  • Representing a Scottish Limited Partnership which has acquired the freehold title of property which is subject to significant fire safety defects.
  • Afriqiyah Airways Advanced Baggage Services Limited: Trial of a dispute between an airline and a General Cargo Sales Agent concerning alleged breaches of an agreement between the parties.
  • Representing various companies and individuals in a dispute relating to losses resulting from an investment in litigation funding.
  • Representing a company defending a claim for significant mobile phone roaming charges allegedly incurred under an airtime agreement.
  • Representing an SME in the construction industry in relation to a claim for the non-payment of invoices for work done on the refurbishment of a school.
  • Acting for the assignee of a debt arising from an adjudication decision determining a dispute concerning the refurbishment of a well-known bar.
  • Holyoake v Savills plc: Successfully resisted an application to transfer a pre-action disclosure application from the Circuit Commercial Court (formerly Mercantile Court) into the Commercial Court in London.
  • Representing the manufacturer and fitter of industrial cooling and ventilation units, designed to be fitted to 3-D printers in a dispute over allegedly faulty equipment.
  • Dispute between a company and its agent in the leisure industry in relation to the switch of its electricity supply.
  • Claim against the purchasers of a business bought through a pre-pack administration in tort for the ongoing use of equipment not transferred during the purchase.

Companies, Joint Ventures & Partnerships

Phillip advises companies, shareholders and directors in relation to a variety of claims such as unfair prejudice claims, derivative claims and other claims of mismanagement as well as applications under section 859F and 859M of the Companies Act 2006.

He also has experience of both contentious and non-contentious aspects of the law of partnerships, having advised and represented LLPs, joint ventures, partnerships and the individuals involved in them.

Recent work

  • Representing the Respondents in an unfair prejudice petition brought in respect of companies providing non-emergency medical transportation services with a combined share price of over £1.2 million.
  • Represented the former director and 50% shareholder of a company providing industrial air-conditioning units in an acrimonious dispute with the company and his former co-director.
  • Representing the Respondent to an unfair prejudice petition arising out of the management of a property investment company.
  • Representing the Claimant seeking payment of deferred consideration owed by his business partner under a share purchase agreement.
  • Advising a partner in a clothing business in respect of claims for breach of fiduciary duty, setting up a rival business and misappropriation of partnership funds.
  • Representing a partnership involved in litigation against a former partner in debt and in respect of allegations of misappropriation of partnership funds.
  • Representing the Claimant seeking payment of deferred consideration owed by his business partner under a share purchase agreement.
  • Representing a Scottish Limited Partnership which has a acquired the freehold title of property which is subject to significant fire safety defects.
  • Advising members of an LLP in the renewable energy industry on the interpretation of the acquisition and transfer provisions in an LLP agreement.
  • Representing the former director and 50% shareholder of a company providing industrial air-conditioning units in an acrimonious dispute with the company and his former co-director.
  • Representing the Respondent to an unfair prejudice petition arising out of the management of a property investment company.
  • Advising the guarantor of a company liability who inadvertently discharged the company’s obligations to a commercial lender by way of erroneous payment from a personal bank account.
  • Working on the team representing Sir Jack Hayward in his dispute with the family of the late Edward St George concerning the ownership of a company controlling a wide range of business interests in Freeport, Bahamas.
  • Sinclair v Versailles [2011] EWCA Civ 347: A claim by a company for the recovery of sums acquired by a director in breach of fiduciary duty. The judgment of the Court of Appeal was the leading authority on the nature of constructive trust claims for the recovery of bribes and secret commissions until it was overruled by the Supreme Court in 2014.

Corporate Insolvency

Phillip is a popular choice as a junior counsel for the insolvency teams of many firms in London and nationwide. He regularly appears in the Companies Court in a range of complex and technical corporate insolvency applications.

Phillip writes articles on recent developments in insolvency law for the publication, Insolvency Intelligence and for the LexisNexis Corporate Rescue and Insolvency publication.

Phillip has undertaken an in-depth study of the Insolvency (England & Wales) Rules 2016 and the likely problems that will arise under the New Rules.  He was part of the team that presented the well-attended and highly acclaimed half-day Seminar on the New Rules on 14th March 2017, which was addressed by the Chief Bankruptcy Registrar, Stephen Baister.  A Handout based on the material used at the Seminar is available upon request.

Phillip is part of the team at Hardwicke currently updating the Corporate Insolvency Chapter of Atkin’s Court Forms.

Recent work:

  • Re First Class Legal (IS) Limited – Representing a major creditor in the liquidation of a litigation funding and ATE insurance company. Phillip will be appearing at a 3-day trial in November 2017.
  • Advising the liquidators of a company which ran children’s homes in relation to potential claims for breach of duty and preferences against the former directors.
  • Representing an airline servicing company in its application for an administration order.
  • Representing a liquidator in misfeasance claims against the former directors of a wholesaler.
  • Advising the assignee of a debt on the impact of insolvency set-off on non-assignment clauses in various agreements.
  • Representing the administrative receiver of a company in relation to claims brought against the company (now in liquidation) for breaches of duty and alleging the existence of transactions defrauding creditors.
  • An application for an arrest warrant against a former director who absconded and refused to attend a public examination.
  • Representing a creditor and former director of a company in relation to claims for unpaid salary and deferred consideration in a CVA.
  • Re Lehman Brothers (Client Money Appeal) – high profile decision of the Court of Appeal concerning the segregation of client money prior to the insolvency of the bank.

Personal Insolvency

Phillip is a popular choice for a wide range of personal insolvency applications and regularly advises in relation to complex and difficult bankruptcies.

Phillip writes articles on recent developments in insolvency law for the publication, Insolvency Intelligence. He has focused in particular on the issue of the suspension of discharge from bankruptcy and one of his articles was cited with approval by Mr Justice Nugee in the leading case of Hilsdon v Weir [2017] EWHC 983 (Ch).

Recent work:

  • Bramston v Harris – representing an individual opposing an application by a trustee in bankruptcy for a Mawer v Bland-type suspension of discharge.
  • Representing a secured creditor opposing an application by a trustee challenging the validity of the security.
  • Representing the partners who owned and operated a popular restaurant in Kent in relation to bankruptcy petitions brought against them.
  • Successfully represented a wealthy business executive facing a bankruptcy petition brought by HMRC after he relocated to Germany.
  • Successfully set aside a statutory demand brought against a guarantor in respect of disputed refurbishment works.
  • Represented a trustee in relation to an application for possession and sale of a residential property and concurrent application for annulment.

Property Insolvency

A significant proportion of Phillip’s work involves a crossover of aspects of property and insolvency law. As a result, Phillip is well placed to handle and advise on technical aspects arising in both of these disciplines.

Recent work:

  • Represented a trustee in relation to an application for possession and sale of a residential property and concurrent application for annulment.
  • Acting for a trustee seeking the possession and sale of various properties of a bankrupt.
  • Representing an individual property developer seeking to set aside a statutory demand served on him.
  • Representing the partners who owned and operated a popular restaurant in Kent in relation to bankruptcy petitions brought against them.

Financial Professionals, Insolvency Professionals, Directors & Officers

As part of his broader corporate and personal insolvency work, Phillip has provided advice and representation in matters concerning allegations of professional negligence against insolvency professionals:

Recent work:

  • Advising a former director of a company dissolved after an administration who alleges that his advisors negligently failed to pursue the option of a CVA.

Languages

French

Professional associations

  • COMBAR
  • ChBA
  • LCLCBA

Publications

Contributing editor for the Companies Insolvency chapter of Atkin’s Court Forms

Qualifications

  • BA (Jurisprudence), Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford
  • LLM, University College London
  • Bar Vocational Course, College of Law

CSR

Phillip volunteers for the Bar Pro Bono Unit and the COIN Scheme assisting litigants-in-person in the companies winding up court.

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