Mark’s practice encompasses a wide range of commercial litigation and arbitration.
He acts in arbitrations both in London and abroad, and appears regularly in the English Courts, including the specialist Commercial Court, Admiralty Court and the Court of Appeal. During the last few years, he has been instructed to act as sole counsel for clients on appeals to the Court of Appeal on 4 occasions. In many of his cases, Mark is regularly pitted against leading QCs.
His commercial practice has a particular focus on all matters relating to shipping and international trade. His expertise extends to all corners of the shipping industry, from charterparties and bills of lading to salvage, from cargo claims to collisions, from ship finance to performance guarantees, and from marine insurance to general average. He has a particular specialism in shipbuilding disputes and cases arising out of contracts for the sale and purchase of second hand tonnage, and the related finance, security and guarantee contractual arrangements.
Over the years, he has been involved with some of the most important shipping cases, such as the “ATLANTIK CONFIDENCE” (Court of Appeal), the “SEA ANGEL” (Court of Appeal), and the “STARSIN” (House of Lords), and the “MSC NAPOLI”.
Mark has extensive experience of arbitration, having been involved with hundreds of arbitrations during his career. He appears regularly as counsel in arbitrations both in London (under various institutional rules, inc. ICC, LCIA and LMAA) and abroad (e.g. Dubai, Singapore and the U.S.). He is very familiar with the workings of the Arbitration Act 1996, and has conducted and opposed applications under many of its provisions, including s.9 (stay), s.18 (appointment), s.24 (removal), s.44 (urgent relief ), ss.30 & 67 (jurisdiction), and ss.68 and 69 (challenges and appeals). Mark also has experience of various interlocutory applications, including applications for urgent injunctive relief (such as freezing orders) both in the context of domestic litigation and also in support of foreign proceedings and arbitrations.
Mark sits in a part-time judicial capacity as a Recorder (a Deputy Circuit Judge), and is authorised to hear a wide range of cases, both criminal and civil.
Mark accepts appointments as an arbitrator, whether by a party, as a chairman, or as a sole arbitrator. In appropriate cases, he may be appointed as a sole arbitrator to determine lower value or simpler disputes on the basis of papers and written submissions alone. He is always willing to adopt suitable procedures designed to achieve the fair resolution of a dispute in a proportionate, cost-effective and swift manner. Please contact the clerks for further information about appointing Mark as an arbitrator.
Mark also provides expert evidence on English maritime and commercial law for use in foreign proceedings.
Before commencing his career at the Bar, Mark trained as a litigation solicitor at Ince & Co focusing on shipping, trade and insurance.
Appointments & Memberships
- Chartered Institute of Arbitrators – Member (MCIArb)
- London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA), Young International Arbitration Group and European Users’ Council
- London Maritime Arbitrators’ Association (LMAA), Supporting Member
- Commercial Bar Association (COMBAR)
- London Common Law and Commercial Bar Association (LCLCBA)
- British Maritime Law Association (BMLA)
- London Shipping Law Centre (LSLC)
- Association of Average Adjusters (AAA)
Education & Qualifications
- 1988-1993 Winchester College (Scholar)
- 1994-1997 Oxford University: BA (Hons) Jurisprudence
- 1997-1998 College of Law (London): Legal Practice Course
- 1998-2000 Ince & Co LLP
- 2000 Called to the Bar (Lincoln’s Inn, Kennedy Scholar)
- 2018 Appointed a Recorder (Crime & Civil)
Mark was a scholar at Winchester College before going on to study Law at Oxford University (St Edmund Hall), graduating in 1997. He completed the Legal Practice Course at the College of Law in London, and then spent 2 years training as a solicitor at Ince & Co, London, specialising in shipping, trade, insurance and general commercial litigation. Mark moved to the Bar in 2000, and was awarded a Kennedy Scholarship by Lincoln’s Inn. He completed his 1st 6 months of pupillage at Essex Court Chambers (Gordon Pollock QC) and his 2nd 6 months at Stone Chambers (Steven Gee QC). He joined Chambers as a tenant in 2001.
Shipping & International Trade
Mark’s practice has a considerable shipping component (both ‘dry’ and ‘wet’), and covers all aspects of international trade, whether it be the carriage of goods, the sale of goods, or the related financial and insurance transactions. He has been involved with some of the leading shipping cases of the
last 10 years, such as:
- The ‘Sea Angel’  2 Lloyd’s Rep 517 (Court of Appeal),  1 Lloyd’s Rep 335: acted for successful sub-contracting salvors in claims arising out of the large scale “TASMAN SPIRIT” casualty in Pakistan in the Commercial Court and then in the Court of Appeal involving novel and important issues relating to the doctrine of frustration of contract.
- The ‘Starsin’  1 AC 715 (House of Lords): acted for the successful Appellant shipowners / demise charterers on appeal to the House of Lords in one of the most important shipping cases in the last 10 years involving a wide range of issues relevant to the carriage of goods under bills of lading.
Mark has been instructed in many significant high value disputes. This is most evident in his shipbuilding work, where he has been involved with disputes involving sums in excess of US$200 million.
‘Dry’ Shipping: The core of Mark’s shipping practice is “dry” shipping, comprising the full range of bill of lading/charterparty disputes, time charter disputes, unseaworthiness claims, unsafe port disputes and other cargo claims.
The breadth of his ‘dry’ shipping practice can be seen from the following selection of recent and noteworthy cases:
- Acting for owners in significant unsafe port claim (circa US$6 million) concerning open water port in Indonesia – claim settled during arbitration.
- Acting for major shipping company in long-running dispute under pool agreement for liner services arising out of significant loss of containers overboard - case involves proceedings in multiple jurisdictions and arbitration.
- Acting for shipowners and charterers in respect of substantial competing claims made by OW Bunker subsidiary and physical supplier (involving bunkers consumed both before and after expiry of credit period).
- Acting for a division of an oil major in its claim for approx. US$8.5 million against the operators of one of the World’s largest tanker fleets following an explosion on board a tanker vessel.
- Cosmotrade SA v Kairos Shipping Ltd, The “ATLANTIK CONFIDENCE” aka Kairos Shipping Ltd & Anr v Enka & Co LLC & Ors  EWHC 1904 (Comm)  2 Lloyd’s Rep. 535;  EWCA Civ 217,  1 WLR 3883,  1 Lloyd’s Rep 586 (Arbitration, Commercial Court, Admiralty Court & Court of Appeal): acting for the time charterers, Cosmotrade SA, in this leading case concerning the loss of the vessel “ATLANTIK CONFIDENCE”, and all her cargo, in April 2013, resulting in cargo claims in excess of US$30 million; the case has involved various worldwide freezing orders against the vessel’s owners obtained in the Commercial Court and a limitation action commenced by those owners in the Admiralty Court; the Court of Appeal overturned 30 years of practice and assumption among English shipping lawyers and academics, by ruling that a limitation fund may be constituted by guarantee.
- ED&F Man v Unicargo Transportgesellschaft GmbH and Polska Zeluga Morska PP, The “LADYTRAMP”  EWCA Civ 1449  1 Lloyd’s Rep 412 (Arbitration & Court of Appeal): acting for Polska Zeluga Morska PP in its intervention in this case before the Court of Appeal; case concerned the carriage of a cargo of sugar in bulk under the industry standard Sugar Charter Party 1999 form, and in particular the correct interpretation of a clause in that form allocating risk of delays resulting from “mechanical breakdown” in the context of a fire at a cargo terminal; also raised issues as to the proper and correct scope of an appeal on a point of law under section 69 of the Arbitration Act 1996 as the appellants had sought to raise ‘new’ points before the Court of Appeal that had not been taken in the underlying arbitration.
- Acting in multi-party Commercial Court proceedings concerning charterparty claims totaling over US$2 million arising out of a collision; case involved a very wide range of issues, including time bars, demurrage, seaworthiness, identity of contractual parties and more.
- Advising major Korean owners in respect of their claim against an oil major for their wrongful cancellation of a charterparty: including the oil major’s counterclaim, the overall value of the case is about US$1.8 million.
- Advising charterers regarding their escape from a very long term charter (in excess of 15 years to run) and very expensive charter (some US$10,000/day over the market rate at the relevant time) in the face of an aggressive stance taken by owners and their bank: the charterers were successful in escaping the charter without repercussions, and in doing so saved themselves in excess of US$50 million (subject to accelerated benefit adjustments).
- Acting for two parties in multi-party arbitration involving difficult questions arising out of the misnaming of contractual parties in the chain of contracts concerned.
- Advising shipowners faced with a claim under bills of lading regarding the carriage of a cargo of rice from Vietnam to Liberia: the case involves disputes as to jurisdiction and the possible application of a time bar extinguishing the claim in its entirety.
- Progress Bulk Carriers Ltd v Tube City IMS LLC, The “CENK KAPTANOGLU”  EWHC 273 (Comm),  2 All ER (Comm) 855,  1 Lloyd’s Rep. 501: Acting in this case about the negotiation of a settlement by an owner following its repudiatory breach of a charter – the case is one of the very rare reported cases on the doctrine of ‘lawful act’ economic duress.
- Acting in well-known multi-faceted and multi-jurisdictional dispute arising out of the total loss of a bulk carrier and its cargo: Mark acted for the charterers in their arbitration against the owners concerning cargo claims worth in excess of US$14 million.
- Acting in legally complex claim for compensation by charterers following the exercise of a contractual withdrawal clause by owners.
- Acting for the owners in a dispute with charterers worth about US$2.75 million about the correct operation of a ‘substitution clause’ and the appropriate adjustment to be made to the hire rate under a long-term charterparty.
- Advising charterers in a significant dispute arising out of the charter of a cruise ship, involving claims in the region of Euro 50 million.
- Buyuk Camlica Shipping Trading & Industry Co Inc v Progress Bulk Carriers Ltd, The “HILAL I”  EWHC 442 (Comm),  1 Lloyd’s Rep Plus 102,  Bus LR D99: Acting for successful charterers in arbitration involving numerous disputes under long term charter, and on subsequent appeal to the Commercial Court (inc. various issues regarding the operation of the Arbitration Act 1996).
- Acting for ship owners in defence of US$3.6m Commercial Court claim arising out of the carriage of a mobile drilling rig.
- Acting for owners in dispute arising out of a Contract of Affreightment involving the carriage of pipes from China to Venezuela in which owners were defending claims made by the charterers for non-performance in excess of US$4.6 million.
- Acting for shipowners and container lines in various major losses of containerized cargoes involving high value claims by multiple parties in multiple jurisdictions and raising complex issues of jurisdiction and marine limitation of liability.
- Edwinton Commercial Corp v Tsavliris Russ (Worldwide Salvage & Towage) Ltd, The “SEA ANGEL”  EWCA Civ 547,  2 All ER (Comm) 634, 2 Lloyd’s Rep 517 (Court of Appeal);  1 Lloyd’s Rep 335 (Commercial Court): Acting for successful sub-contracting salvors in claims arising out of the large scale “TASMAN SPIRIT” casualty in Pakistan in the Commercial Court and then in the Court of Appeal: the case involved novel and important issues relating to the doctrine of frustration of contract, and is the most recent appellate decision on that doctrine.
- Homburg Houtimport BV v Agrosin Private Ltd, The “STARSIN”  1 AC 715 (House of Lords): acted for the successful appellant shipowners / demise charterers on appeal to the House of Lords in one of the most important shipping cases of the last 10 years involving a wide range of issues relevant to the carriage of goods under bills of lading.
Ship Construction, Sale & Purchase, Management and Finance: Mark has particular expertise in matters arising out of the construction and sale of ships, and the various contracts relating to ship finance (including loan facilities, guarantees, mortgages, assignments, and other securities). He has experience of working with all parties involved with the acquisition, management and financing of vessels, in both contentious and non-contentious situations – whether it be advising on contractual terms, advising on restructuring arrangements, enforcing lender’s securities, or acting for parties to newbuild and sale contracts in arbitration and Court proceedings.
By way of example:
- Acting for buyer against a major drilling company in multi-million dollar claim arising out of the aborted sale of a Semi-Sub Tender Barge (ad hoc arbitration in Houston under hybrid of LMAA / AAA rules, QC opposition).
- Acting for buyers in 4 arbitrations arising out of the cancellation of 4 shipbuilding contracts for 4 multi-purpose container vessels each worth in excess of US$6million; successfully steering the lead arbitration through two preliminary issues, and obtaining a final award for over US$7.5 million enabling buyers to procure payment under the refund guarantee; following yard’s refusal to engage with the remaining 3 arbitrations, successfully obtaining final awards (after overcoming numerous difficulties arising out of the yard’s refusal to cooperate with the arbitrations) resulting in payment being made under remaining guarantees.
- Acting in an arbitration concerning the construction of a super-yacht in which the claims made exceeded Euro 280 million: brought in for his arbitration expertise to handle a rare challenge against one of the 3 arbitrators, a leading commercial QC, on the basis of apparent bias under s24 of the Arbitration Act 1996; drew up what is believed to be a unique form of arbitration agreement involving the appointment of a substitute arbitrator and the creation of hybrid arbitration tribunals to hear different aspects of the case.
- Advising the lead bank financing the owners of 8 VLCCs as to how best to protect its interests in relation to the restructuring of 8 long term charter parties (governed by English law) and the potential insolvency (in Germany) of various of the owners: the case involved complex issues, including the inter-relationship between English contract law and German insolvency rules and the operation of liens over sub-freights, with sums sin excess of US$40 million at stake.
- Advising the banks financing the purchase of two LPG carriers (each worth over US$29 million), as to how best to protect their security interests during the shipbuilding projects.
- Advising the Scottish buyers of two state-of-the-art freezer trawlers (each worth well in excess of US$30 million) to be constructed by a Turkish yard during the course of their negotiations with the yard and the parties’ respective banks about the wordings of the refund and payment guarantees required.
- Acting for the sellers of a second-hand vessel in their defence of a claim brought by the buyers in arbitration on the basis of the vessel’s condition on delivery.
- Advising the guarantors standing behind the buyers of two vessels (each worth over US$30 million) in circumstances where the two buyers (both BVI companies) had gone into liquidation and disclaimed the two shipbuilding contracts under BVI insolvency law: the case raised numerous very complex issues of law, and Mark was responsible for marshalling specialist advice from junior barristers on particular sub-issues (e.g. the cross-border impact of BVI insolvency rules).
- Advising in relation to the cancellation and renegotiation of 10 shipbuilding contracts for the construction of 10 chemical tankers in a project worth over US$260 million.
- Advising the bank standing behind the buyers of 8 newbuild chemical tankers, each with a price of US$26.6million (total project value in excess of US$212million), in the context of arbitrations between the buyers and sellers.
- Acting for the buyers (and their financial backers) of 2 newbuild bulk carriers, in 2 London arbitrations involving potential claims with a total value of US$70 million and raising difficult issues about guarantees, anticipatory breach and renunciation, and the scope of ‘without prejudice’ communications.
- Advising the buyers of 5 vessels as to their rights to cancel the 5 shipbuilding contracts and their prospects of recovering the substantial sums of money already paid under those contracts.
- Acting for sellers of a vessel in their defence of claims in excess of US$12.5million brought by the buyers in London arbitration proceedings.
- Advising managers in dispute with owners about managers’ decision to acquiesce to charterers putting vessel off-hire at a loss of over US$1million in earnings.
- Acting in various cases concerning substantial pleasure yachts (including for Russian owners of a super-yacht in a warranty claim for Euros 1.75 million).
- Acting for well-known individual in dispute over ownership of 2 substantial pleasure yachts.
Marine Insurance: Mark provides advice and appears in arbitration and Court in marine insurance matters. He has handled disputes over policy construction, coverage and non-disclosure in the context of all forms of marine cover: cargo, hull and P&I, and is familiar with the practice of the Lloyd’s market.
By way of example:
- Advising cargo underwriters in respect of a general average claim, the payment of a ransom to pirates in excess of US$7 million, and the impact of ‘waiver of subrogation’ clauses in the context of K&R insurance.
- Acting for cargo underwriters in a claim involving alleged breach of Class warranties, s.39(5) of the MIA 1906, and alleged breach of associated / affiliated company warranty.
- Acting for the London underwriters in their defence of an insurance claim for in excess of US$5.6 million by the owners of the “HANDY V” relating to the failure of the vessel’s main engine; the case involved highly technical expert evidence on various engineering matters, and the scope of the Inchmaree Clause.
- Advising hull underwriters in London arbitration claim for the recovery from their insured of some US$1,750,000 paid out following the grounding of a vessel: position in the London arbitration under the insurance policy is complicated by concurrent Chinese proceedings regarding general average.
- Advising charterers of vessel which suffered significant damage caused by a chemical cargo, involving claims of circa US$12 million made under the relevant charterparties and insurance policies and raising difficult questions about (i) the inter-relationship between dangerous cargo and seaworthiness obligations, and (ii) the application of the doctrine of inherent vice.
- Acting for insurers in a claim arising out of the loss of a significant cargo of livestock following the capsize of the carrying vessel.
- Advising owners in relation to claim for $2.4million under P&I cover, and in particular as to the operation of the “pay to be paid” clause and the proposed structure of the underlying settlement.
‘Wet’ Shipping & Admiralty: Mark is one of an ever-reducing number of junior barristers with experience of a wide range of ‘wet’ shipping and Admiralty matters, including salvage, collisions, general average, marine limitation of liability and pollution claims. He is familiar with the law and practice of Admiralty Court, and has acted in a number of cases involving the arrest of vessels in the English jurisdiction (and the fall out of such arrests).
His ‘wet’ work is wide-ranging, but includes:
- Drafting a Practice Note on a stream-lined procedure for collision claims (as part of a committee comprising the Admiralty Judge, the Admiralty Registrar and senior representatives of the Admiralty Solicitors Group).
- Acting in various collision cases (inc. open sea, in port and on navigable rivers).
- Advising leading cargo recovery agents concerning standard form general average bonds and guarantees, and potential revision of the same.
- Acting in proceedings in the Admiralty Court arising out of a collision involving multiple parties and claims totaling circa US$19 million.
- Acting in the Admiralty Court proceedings following the grounding of the “MSC NAPOLI” for well-known charities seeking to recover pollution clean-up costs.
- Acting in the Commercial Court for the guarantors in a general average claim.
- Acting for owners in arbitration arising out of the collision between their vessel, a fully laden container ship, and a laden oil tanker at Mumbai.
- Acting in various LOF and ad hoc salvage arbitrations for salvors (both professional and non-professional), ship and cargo interests.
- Acting for ship respondents on appeal to the Lloyds Appeal Arbitrator, successfully reducing the salvage award from US$2.75 million to US$2.2 million.
Law of the Sea & Maritime Legislation, Crime & Regulations: Mark also has a niche practice in the field of the Law of the Sea and maritime crime & regulations.
- Advising one of the World’s leading marine exploration companies, Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc, in relation to the exploration and exploitation of the 18th Century wreck of HMS Victory, believed to hold gold bullion worth some £600 million; case involved the as yet untested jurisdiction of the Marine Management Organization under the Marine & Costal Access Act 2009 as regards the regulation of the activities of so-called ‘treasure hunters’ in respect of the exploration, preservation, recovery and exploitation of wrecks and underwater cultural heritage located on the seabed outside UK territorial waters but within the UK’s Exclusive Economic Zone.
- Advising the Attorney-General of the Bahamas on the possible revision of elements of the maritime legislation of the Bahamas.
- Advising and defending owners, managers and officers in various prosecutions brought by the UK authorities / the Maritime and Coastguard Agency under, inter alia, the Merchant Shipping Act 1985 and regulations made thereunder (having formerly acted as prosecuting counsel for the MCA on various occasions).
- Serving on two of the BMLA’s working groups: one considering the UK Government’s proposals for the implementation of the Bunkers Convention 2001, and the second considering the implementation by the UK of the European Directive on Environmental Liability.
Mark has been instructed in hundreds of disputes that have been referred to arbitration, both in the UK and abroad. Matters of confidentiality preclude mentioning most such disputes by name, but examples of his work include:
- Acting for a major Indian company in an arbitration held in Dubai regarding a significant dispute arising out of the launch and management of a new state-of-the-art hospital in Dubai
- Acting for buyer against a major drilling company in multi-million dollar claim arising out of the aborted sale of a Semi-Sub TenderBarge (ad hoc arbitration in Houston under hybrid of LMAA / AAA rules, QC opposition.
- Acting for buyers in 4 arbitrations arising out of the cancellation of 4 shipbuilding contracts for 4 multi-purpose container vessels each worth in excess of US$6million (including preliminary issues and various applications to overcome respondent refusing to cooperate in arbitrations)
- Acting for applicant in rare challenge against one of the 3 arbitrators, a leading commercial QC, on the basis of apparent bias under s.24 of the Arbitration Act 1996 (including drafting of a unique form of arbitration agreement involving the appointment of a substitute arbitrator and the creation of hybrid arbitration tribunals to hear different aspects of the case)
- Acting for in various s.44 applications for the preservation of evidence and assets
- Polish Steamship Company & Anr v Novel Commodities SA (Arbitration & Commercial Court): worldwide freezing order for the sum of US$5.25 million granted under section 44 of the Arbitration Act 1996; obtaining permission pursuant to the Dadourian Guidelines to enforce freezing order in Switzerland
- Acting on s.30 challenge to scope of jurisdiction premised on mistaken terms of reference
- Acting on s.30 challenge to jurisdiction on basis of ineffective notice of arbitration (including scope of power of tribunal to order security for costs of such an application)
- Acting on s.18 application for appointment of arbitrator when parties failed to agree sole arbitrator
- Acting for two parties in multi-party arbitration involving questions arising out of the misnaming of contractual parties in the chain of contracts concerned
Mark’s general commercial work is wide-ranging, as illustrated by the diversity of the following examples of his work:
- Bonhams v Lawson & Ors: acting as lead counsel for one of the parties against several well-known QCs in high profile multiparty case in the Commercial Court concerning the sale at Goodwood by Bonhams of a Ferrari 375 Plus Grand Prix for a price in excess of £10 million; disputes over title to the car have raged for over 20 years; jurisdictional challenge and anti-suit injunction; preliminary issues due to be heard in late 2015; major trial listed for early 2016
- Berezovsky v Hine & Ors: selected by Mr Justice Mann to act as his judicial assistant (to be funded by the parties) in the well-publicized and exceptionally high value ‘oligarch’ dispute between Boris Berezovksy and a number of others, including Vasily Anisimov and the estate of the late Arkadi Patarkatsishvili; Mark’s role would have been unprecedented and wholly groundbreaking, had the parties not settled the actions during the 2-day pre-trial review shortly before the 6 month trial was due to begin in the Chancery Division
- Progress Bulk Carriers Ltd v Tube City IMS LLC EWHC 273 (Comm),  1 Lloyd’s Rep 501: Acting in the latest reported case about the doctrine of ‘lawful act’ economic duress
- Acting in a dispute between high net worth individuals about the development of property in the UAE, involving complex issues of applicable law and jurisdiction arising in relation to the law of trusts, partnership, property and oral agreements
- Advising a guarantor in a complicated case where the debtors are subject to liquidation in the BVI and have disclaimed the relevant contracts under BVI law
- Gracechurch Capital v Republic of Cameroon: Acting for the Government of Cameroon in Commercial Court proceedings relating to a claim brought by an alleged assignee of significant tranches of government debt
- Advising a major company in the paper business in a dispute arising out of a contract for the disposal and relocation of extensive plant and machinery among group companies based in the UK, China, Spain, India and Germany
- Acting for a well-known internet service provider in a number of significant commercial disputes, some involving successful High Court proceedings and others involving advising / preparation for mediation
- Advising an international firm of solicitors facing claims of professional negligence from their former client arising out of their handling of a long term and significant arbitration on their behalf (successfully settled in mediation)
- Acting in High Court proceedings for the enforcement of German Judgments by way of charging orders over share holdings
- Pakistan International Airlines Corporation v IAA(UK): Acting for the defendants in a Commercial Court claim for US$1,5000,000 by a major airline regarding the storage and sale of aircraft parts
- The Car Agency (International) Ltd v Daimler Chrysler UK Limited: Acting in a dispute involving the import of a significant number of cars into the UK from the US and allegations of (inter alia) malicious falsehood
- JP Morgan Chase v Peraticos & Ors: Acting in Commercial Court proceedings involving claims of approximately US$11million arising out of the collapse of the Pegasus shipping group
- Miller Brewing v Mersey Docks & Harbour Company & Ors  FSR 81: consideration of how the rights of third parties should be protected when the court grants a party interim relief
Banking and Finance
Mark has acted in cases involving loan agreements, guarantees and performance bond disputes, as well as trade-related finance (including documentary credits and bills of exchange). His experience extends beyond advising on the relevant agreements to include acting for institutions financing major projects that encounter serious difficulties and is therefore familiar with the longer term strategic thinking required when such parties are standing ‘behind’ the principal parties involved with the projects in question.
- Advising a UK bank in relation to facilities that it provided to customers operating in international commodity markets as to the proper operation under English law of mechanisms used in international trade such as ‘trust receipts’ and various negotiable documents
- Advising a major German bank as to its, and its customer’s rights, under instruments issued by a Chinese bank (involving as to whether the documents were guarantees or performance bonds, the effects of variations to the underlying contracts, and so on
- Acting for the banks standing behind the buyers in various major shipbuilding projects that have stalled, and in some cases, been cancelled (One such case involves the construction of 8 chemical tankers, each with a price of US$26.6million (total value well in excess US$200 million), and another involves a US$260 million project for the construction of 10 vessels)
Mark has been instructed in various insurance matters, and is frequently asked to advise and act for both insureds and underwriters in a wide range of
disputes. He is familiar with the workings of the London market.
- Acting for London underwriters in their defence of an insurance claim for in excess of US$5.6 million by the owners of the “HANDY V” relating to the failure of the vessel’s main engine
- Acting for underwriters seeking to recover from their insured the sum of US$1.75m following over-payments made on account
- Advising on claim arising from the theft of a ‘super car’
- Acting for cargo underwriters in a claim involving alleged breach of Class warranties, s.39(5) of the MIA 1906, and alleged breach of associated/ affiliated company warranty
- Advising the charterers of a vessel which suffered significant damage caused by a chemical cargo, involving claims of circa US$12million made under the relevant charters and insurance policies and raising difficult questions about (i) the inter-relationship between dangerous cargo and seaworthiness obligations, and (ii) the application of the doctrine of inherent vice
- Advising the insured in relation to claim for $2.4million under liability insurance, and in particular as to the operation of the “pay to be paid” clause in the policy and the proposed structure of the underlying settlement
- Acting for political risk insurers in claim arising out of expropriation of geothermal power station
- Advising cargo underwriters in respect of a general average claim, the payment of a ransom to pirates in excess of US$7 million, and the impact of ‘waiver of subrogation’ clauses in the context of K&R insurance