Professional practice

Legal 500 Leading Silk

“Phenomenal in everything he does”, “absolutely top-notch” and “exceptional”.

David Craig QC’s practice encompasses large-scale multi-week litigation (often with an international/multi-jurisdictional dimension), urgent injunctive relief and appellate work, principally founded on disputes arising in the context of employment, partnership and LLP membership. David is generally instructed in high profile and heavyweight cases in the High Court, frequently involving conspiracy and economic torts, unlawful competition, team moves, the protection of confidential information, post-termination restraints, wrongful termination/expulsion, carried interest and bonus disputes (where he has acted in most of the landmark decisions), as well as claims arising in a regulatory context which raise important reputational issues, and whistleblowing and discrimination claims in the Employment Tribunal.

“As good as it gets”, he works “ferociously hard” and in Court “you really feel he is fighting your corner”.

He is often instructed by clients in the financial services sector (including investment banks, inter-dealer brokers, hedge funds, and individual employees in those sectors), but his client base is wide and includes insurers/insurance brokers, PR firms, professionals, and music and publishing businesses.

David was included in the inaugural Chambers UK 100, which identifies the top 100 juniors and silks in the country, where he is described as follows:

“…Craig has ‘a brilliant legal brain’ and ‘inspires trust and confidence from clients and instructing solicitors alike.”

Chambers UK Bar 2018 says David is, “Renowned for his grasp of employment law and brilliance in the courtroom. He handles a variety of issues, including injunctive relief, team moves, restrictive covenants and dismissals. Reassuring for witnesses, great with clients and really clever. Just brilliant in terms of reactivity and willingness to get involved. He is a real team player.”


What others say

The Legal 500 2022: Employment:

  • “He is conscientious, hard-working and tactically astute – a master strategist.” “He is phenomenal in every sense: he is incredibly bright, he is fast, he is much better prepared than his opponents; he is an astonishingly good advocate, who is creative in his approach and super responsive.”

The Legal 500 2022: Employment:

  • “David is the complete package – intelligent, commercial, hard-working, and with gravitas and great client skills. In recent years he has moved to the very elite level of the employment Bar and he never disappoints.”

The Legal 500 2021:

  • “A phenomenal silk at the top of his game, he is the natural first choice for the most complex and high-value High Court employment claims and arbitrations. David is an outstanding advocate with devastating cross-examination skills, and his mastery of the detail in hugely complex litigation is without comparison.”

Chambers & Partners UK Bar 2019:

  • “Fantastic…Brilliant on his feet and a brilliant technician…A really good strategic thinker.”

The Legal 500 2019:

  • “An incredible brain and a superb cross-examiner.”

Who’s Who Legal 2018:

  • “A leading silk in complex employment litigation; reputation for handling high-stakes cases; exceptionally bright, totally dedicated and…first choice for injunctive work.”

Chambers & Partners UK Bar 2018:

  • “Renowned for his grasp of employment law and brilliance in the courtroom. He handles a variety of issues, including injunctive relief, team moves, restrictive covenants and dismissals.”
  • “Reassuring for witnesses, great with clients and really clever.”
  • “Just brilliant in terms of reactivity and willingness to get involved. He is a real team player.”

The Legal 500 2017:

  • “He is meticulous in everything he does and leaves no stone unturned.”

The Legal 500:

  • A first-choice silk for high-value employment disputes, particularly in High Court litigation
  • “Amazing attention to detail.”
  • “Exceptional attention to detail.”

Who’s Who Legal:

  • David Craig QC is a “revered” practitioner and is frequently instructed by clients in the financial services sector. His wide-ranging practice encompasses unlawful competition, team moves, misuse of confidential information and bonus awards”

Chambers & Partners UK Bar:

  • “Absolutely top-notch, he is incredibly user-friendly and works ferociously hard…you really feel he is fighting your corner in court.”
  • “His lawyering is phenomenal. It’s a question of whether or not you can get him on something because he’s so popular…He is truly exceptional.”
  • “Amongst the very best in the business. Frequently referred to as a ‘real superstar’ he is client-friendly, extremely responsive, very commercial and terrific on the strategy.”
  • “As good as it gets.”
  • Clients find that star in the making David Craig ticks all the boxes due to his charm, pragmatism and responsiveness. He seamlessly integrates himself into a team and really puts his back into it. Described by some as ‘Mr Bonus’, Craig is a particular favourite of solicitors”
Examples of recent cases

Tate v Lloyds Banking Group – acting for former director of Lloyds claiming for transfer of shares

ED&F Man v Hussain and others – acting in Dubai International Financial Centre Courts in respect of claims for breach of post-termination restraints and conspiracy

King v Ogilvy & Mather – acting for CEO of Ogilvy & Mather in respect of the latter’s attempted enforcement of post-termination restraints.

Faieta v ICAP – acting for ICAP defending claim that placing an employee on garden leave, and continuing that period of garden leave for 15 months, was irrational or perverse and in respect of damages claim for various bonus awards during notice period.

Sebares v Cubico Sustainable Investments Ltd – acting for respondent in claim for alleged whistleblowing dismissal

Dyson James Ltd v Conze – acting for the former CEO of Dyson James Ltd in respect of his litigation with the company

AstraZeneca v Miels – acting for AstraZeneca in respect of its enforcement of garden leave provisions against an employee seeking to take up role as President of Global Pharmaceuticals for GSK.

Capital Markets Company v Tarver and others – acting for defendant in conspiracy claim

Spirax Sarco v Aflex House – acting for Spirax-Sarco restraining breaches of post termination restraints in a sale and purchase agreement and employment contracts, and obtaining orders for delivery up and imaging

Johnson v Fortress Investment Group – acting for claimant in disability discrimination claim (motor neurone disease) relating to his dismissal

Bennett and Phillips v Ladbrokes – acting for claimants in whistleblowing claim

Elliston v Glencore [2016] EWCA Civ 407– acting on behalf of Glencore in its bonus dispute with Xstrata’s former company secretary (in the High Court and Court of Appeal)

Tata v Sengar [2016] EWHC 456 – acting for multinational IT consultancy business obtaining injunctive relief for the delivery up and non-use of its confidential information (High Court), and resisting discrimination claim in the Employment Tribunal

Willis v JLT and others (2016) – acting in the High Court for two individual defendants in respect of a “team move” case in which allegations of conspiracy, breaches of contract, duties of confidence and fiduciary duties were made

LIBOR/BBA/unlawful fee arrangements (2015-16) – acting for a number of financial institutions in respect of regulatory-related claims in the Employment Tribunal

Bradbury v BBC (ongoing) – acting for the BBC before the Pensions Ombudsman, High Court and Court of Appeal in respect of a claim concerning a cap on pensionable salary in a final salary pension scheme

Arthur J Gallagher v Ross et al (2015) – acting in the High Court for one of three defendants accused of conspiring and breaching various duties in respect of an alleged “team move”

McIlwee v Tesco (2015) – acting for former director of Tesco in his remuneration dispute with the company

X v Y (2015) – acting for large financial services company in respect of a cap on pensionable salary in its final salary pension scheme

Sunrise Brokers LLP v Rodgers [2015] ICR 272 – acting in the Court of Appeal for an individual enjoined by the High Court from joining a competitor in the USA

Elsevier Ltd v Munro [2014] IRLR 766 – acting in the High Court for an employer restraining an employee from joining a competitor in the USA during his notice period

Clyde & Co LLP and another v Bates van Winkelhof 2014 [2014] 1 WLR 2047 – acting for former member of an LLP in her discrimination and whistleblowing claims (and establishing that LLP members could be workers), and in resisting an injunction seeking to restrain her from pursuing those claims

Anar & others v (1) Dresdner Kleinwort Limited and (2) Commerzbank AG [2013] IRLR 548 – acting for 22 employees in their bonus claims based on the promise by the bank to distribute a €400m bonus pool

Continental Capital v GFI (2013) – acting for the claimant inter-dealer broker in the High Court in its claim for unfair competition under Swiss law in respect of a “team move”

Sugar v BBC [2012] 1 WLR 439 – acting for Steven Sugar in his attempts to obtain a copy of the Balen Report under the Freedom of Information Act

Jivraj v Hashwani [2011] 1 WLR 1872 – acting for the ICC, intervening in the Supreme Court, on the status of arbitrators as “employees/workers”

  • Inns of Court School of Law (Outstanding – awarded Certificate of Honour)
  • City University – CPE (Commendation)
  • Cambridge University – Criminology M.Phil (Distinction – Manuel LopezRey Prize for Criminology)
  • Manchester University – Psychology BSc. Hons (First Class)
  • University College School
  • Inner Temple Major Scholar
  • Duke of Edinburgh Scholar