Professional practice

Katherine has a broad commercial litigation and international arbitration practice in line with Chambers’ areas of expertise. Since commencing practice, she has been instructed on a broad spectrum of commercial work from banking and civil fraud to shipping and marine insurance to art and antiquities. She has also assisted with research for the forthcoming edition of Andrews & Millett on Guarantees.

During pupillage, she experienced a wide range of commercial litigation and arbitration disputes, as well as media, employment, insurance and public international law disputes.

Prior to joining Essex Court Chambers, Katherine studied Law at Merton College, Oxford, where she graduated with a First. She then completed the BCL, for which she was awarded two scholarships. Katherine subsequently taught trusts and land law at the London School of Economics, alongside providing research assistance to Members of Chambers on matters of arbitration law for the new edition of Mustill and Boyd on Commercial Arbitration.

 

Arbitration & related court applications

Acting (led by Jeremy Brier) in a JAMS arbitration arising out of breaches of a securities loan agreement and involving allegations of force majeure, penalty clauses and relief from forfeiture.

Assisted two Members of Chambers with research for the new edition of Mustill and Boyd on Commercial Arbitration, including on s.67 and s.69 of the Arbitration Act, on the applicable law of the arbitral agreement, and on the choice of law principles for issues such as capacity, separability and non-arbitrability.

During pupillage, Katherine assisted with a range of arbitration cases, including commercial arbitrations, enforcement and applications under the Arbitration Act. Examples include:

  • Assisted a Member of Chambers in an ICC arbitration concerning a dispute arising out of an agreement for the supply of specialist telecoms equipment to a state entity.
  • Assisted a Member of Chambers in an ICC arbitration concerning a dispute arising out of the purported termination of a shareholders’ agreement.
  • Assisted two Members of Chambers on an application for an interim injunction under s.44 of the Arbitration Act 1996 to prevent a lender from wrongfully taking collateral under a securities loan agreement.
  • Assisted a Member of Chambers in resisting a s.103 challenge to an order enforcing an investment treaty arbitral award which raised issues of estoppel and waiver.
  • Assisted two Members of Chambers in resisting a s.103 challenge relating to whether there was a written arbitration agreement between the parties. The case raised complex issues including issues as to the applicable law and public policy grounds for refusing to enforce an arbitral award.
Banking & financial services

Provided research assistance to Members of Chambers on consumer credit transactions, performance bonds, bank guarantees, letters of comfort, and the law surrounding contracts of suretyship when the principal becomes insolvent for the 8th edition of Andrews & Millett on Guarantees (forthcoming).

Advised (as sole counsel) on the circumstances in which an all monies guarantee can be varied.

During pupillage, Katherine worked on a number of cases connected to the banking & financial services sector, including in relation to civil fraud and contractual disputes.

Civil fraud & asset recovery

E D & F Man Capital Markets Limited v Come Harvest Holdings Limited & ors. Acting as junior counsel (led by Huw Davies QC and John Robb) in Commercial Court proceedings arising out of a £300 million fraud involving the provision of forged warehouse receipts in a “repo” transaction for the sale and repurchase of nickel.

Acting (led by Huw Davies QC and Felix Wardle) in a high-value Ukrainian oligarch civil fraud dispute.

Acting in an arbitration (led by Jeremy Brier) for the claimant seeking to recover shares transferred under a securities loan agreement.

Advising (as sole counsel) on a potential civil fraud claim for £100,000 against an accountant and financial adviser which raises a number of complex issues of misrepresentation and unjust enrichment.

Commercial chancery disputes

Assisted a Member of Chambers in a dispute concerning whether a trustee was permitted to make relevant payments under a trust deed to certain entitled beneficiaries. The case raised a number of complex issues surrounding Benjamin orders and the circumstances in which such a hearing can be held in private.

Prior to joining Essex Court Chambers, Katherine taught trusts law at the London School of Economics to undergraduates.

Commercial dispute resolution

Katherine has a range of experience involving commercial dispute resolution, including tort, contract and unjust enrichment claims. Many of the contractual cases she has assisted with have also raised complex issues of construction. Examples include:

  • Acting (as sole counsel) in a dispute arising out of a consultancy agreement which gives rise to issues relating to implied terms and unjust enrichment.
  • Acted (as sole counsel) in a dispute between a finance company and borrower involving allegations that the finance company failed to mitigate losses by using an auction process rather than a private sale.
  • Assisted two Members of Chambers with a dispute between an investor and an investment manager operating an algorithmic trading strategy concerning allegations of misrepresentations and breach of contract.
Conflict of laws & private international law

Katherine has a particular interest in private international law, having studied conflicts of law on the BCL. She is currently acting (led by Huw Davies QC and Felix Wardle) in a Ukrainian oligarch dispute, seeking to resist a jurisdiction challenge. During pupillage, she worked on a number of cases concerning issues of jurisdiction and/or applicable law, including in relation to Articles 28 and 29 of the Brussels Regulation and applications for permission to serve out of the jurisdiction.

Employment

Assisted a Member of Chambers in a dispute relating to the enforceability of an agreement settling an unlawful dismissal claim.

Advises pro bono on employment law issues including claims for constructive dismissal, discrimination and victimisation.

Energy & natural resources

Assisted a Member of Chambers in a dispute relating to the application of a costs option in an agreement to transport oil.

Insurance & reinsurance

Libyan Navigator Co Ltd v Libya Insurance Company (The “BADR”) Acting (as junior counsel) in marine insurance proceedings involving a c.US$40m claim for the total loss of a vessel following a prolonged stay in Bulgaria.

During pupillage, Katherine worked on a number of insurance claims, including the FCA test case concerning whether business losses suffered as a result of COVID-19 fall within the scope of business interruption insurance. Katherine also assisted two Members of Chambers in an arbitration relating to an insurance claim arising from a $300 million loss.

Media, art, entertainment

Katherine has a particular interest in cases relating to media, art and entertainment. She is presently acting in proceedings arising out of the sale of antiquities, as well as representing an auctioneer as sole counsel in relation to a claim arising out of their lease. During pupillage she assisted a Member of Chambers with advising on media law issues, including potential claims arising from the publication of personal information in newspapers and the availability of injunctions for defamation and the publication of confidential information.

Public international law

Assisted a Member of Chambers in an arbitration involving issues of state immunity and of when an entity will be treated as an organ of the state.

Shipping & admiralty

Instructed (with David Walsh) in Libyan Navigator Co Ltd v Libya Insurance Company (The “BADR”) for underwriters in a c.US$40m claim for the total loss of a vessel following a prolonged stay in Bulgaria.

Advised charterers on a claim arising out of the fouling of the chartered vessel which was unable to enter the port where it was due to deliver cargo.

Advised on a defence to a demurrage claim and a potential unjust enrichment claim relating to the failure to deliver vessels to the owner.

Unjust enrichment & restitution claims

Many of Katherine’s cases involve claims arising out of unjust enrichment, which is an area of English law in which Katherine has a particular interest having studied restitution on the BCL. Katherine is currently advising as sole counsel on a potential civil fraud claim which raises issues of failure of consideration and undue influence and has also recently assisted with research for a claim relating to mistaken forbearance. During pupillage, Katherine worked on a number of unjust enrichment cases including claims arising from a breach of privacy and in relation to a proprietary claim for the return of Bitcoin.

Career

2020: Tenant at Essex Court Chambers

2019-2020: Pupillage at Essex Court Chambers

2019: Called to the Bar (Gray’s Inn)

2018-2019: Guest Teacher in Law at the London School of Economics

Education

2020: BPTC, City University, Outstanding

2019: BCL, Merton College, Oxford (studied conflict of laws, restitution, commercial remedies and corporate insolvency)

2018: BA Law (Jurisprudence), Merton College, Oxford, First Class

Awards

2018: Bedingfield Scholarship, Gray’s Inn

Third in the OEC Times Law Awards 2018

Highly commended in the Bar Council Law Reform Essay Competition 2018

2017: South Square Chambers Scholarship for the BCL

Merton College Barton Scholarship for the BCL

Gibbs book prize for Finals

2016: Reached national semi-finals of the Philip C. Jessup moot, representing University of Oxford

Winner of the Herbert Smith Freehills Disability Moot and the Oxford University Legal Assistance Public Law Moot.

2015: Slaughter and May Prize for Criminal Law, University of Oxford

Academic Scholarship, Merton College

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