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Civil Fraud and Asset Recovery

Members of 36 Commercial have expertise in both breadth and depth in the field of civil fraud (in both private client and commercial contexts), including urgent interim relief, domestic litigation and commercial arbitration.

We are specialists in the recovery, freezing and tracing of assets in the United Kingdom and internationally, which are often concealed or hidden in connection with fraudulent activities.

We focus on fraud claims arising in commercial disputes. We are able to assist from the very initial stages that may include applications for interim relief and the obtaining of worldwide freezing orders, right through to tracing assets into the hands of third parties and the recovery of assets by enforcement of judgments and orders.

Urgent out-of-hours phone number: - *44 (0) 7786 023 245 (Commercial Practice Manager)

Members of 36 Commercial have expertise and experience in dealing with:

  • Freezing and search order relief (including at short notice)
  • Jurisdictional cross border claims
  • International asset tracing and recovery
  • Civil Conspiracy 
  • Dishonest assistance and knowing receipt 
  • Corporate and commercial
    • Banking and financial services fraud
    • Commercial contracts and identity fraud
    • Fraudulent trading and insolvency
    • Fraudulent or improper conduct of partnership business
    • International commercial arbitrations involving allegations of fraud
    • Piercing or lifting the corporate veil where fraudulent conduct is involved
    • Corporate identity theft
    • Directors and fraud upon companies
  • Property and goods
    • Property fraud
    • Fraud (including theft) relating to art and luxury assets
    • Fraudulent acquisition of title to goods
    • Improper administration of estates or trusts
  • Civil bribery and corruption claims
  • Cyber fraud in the civil context
  • Fraud by abuse of position
  • Misfeasance in public office
  • Fraud and digital signatures

Disputes in which fraud is suspected involve from the outset important tactical considerations, including identifying, tracing and preserving assets against which to enforce court orders - at the earliest possible stage. Such court orders are often required at very short notice, sometimes even prior to a letter before claim is sent.

Swift, but difficult, decisions may have to be taken as to whether or not fraud should be expressly alleged or whether reliance should be placed on easier to prove causes of action such as contract or negligence, but where remedies are less generous and issues such as limitation, causation, foreseeability and contributory fault may be more of a problem than where fraud can be proven.

An allegation of fraud carries its own inherent difficulties, not least the fact that by its very nature persons on one side or the other may be dishonest litigants who are prepared to be obstructive in every possible respect.

Fraud litigation may occasionally involve issues such as the right to a civil jury trial and the ability of debts arising out of fraud to survive bankruptcy, which issues do not arise in other fields.

Members of 36 Commercial have the expertise and experience to assist with all of these practical and sometimes difficult issues by providing timely advice, drafting urgent pleadings and applications, and by effective representation in court at interim hearings, domestic trials and international commercial arbitration hearings.

With over 140 barristers, mediators and arbitrators (including 18 Queen's Counsel, 3 Senior Counsel from Ireland and South Africa, and a Senior Advocate of the Supreme Court of India), as well as members based or working in Singapore, Hong Kong and Dubai, The 36 Group is a truly international multi-specialist set.  We are well placed to provide advice and representation relating to multi-jurisdictional fraud - at all levels.

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