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Practice Summary

Michael Fealy practises across the broad range of commercial law, litigation and international commercial arbitration. He combines a busy and diverse commercial practice dealing with all the major issues of the day, with expertise in Energy Law and particularly Corporate Insolvency Law.  Michael was previously called to the Irish Bar (1995) and is a member of the Law Library in Dublin.

Recommended by Chambers UK (Commercial Dispute Resolution) and Legal 500 (Energy):

"Has a natural feel for the issues in a case and is quite down-to-earth." "He's very approachable and authoritative in the way he explains things." Chambers and Partners UK 2019 - Commercial Dispute Resolution

"Calm and unflappable; his submissions are measured, realistic and persuasive." Legal 500 2018-2019 - Energy

"Utterly tenacious and a joy to work with, particularly on cross-border disputes." "The points he makes are very good, and he gets judges on side." Chambers UK 2018 - Commercial Dispute Resolution

"Extremely diligent, he offers first-class legal analysis." "Utterly tenacious and a joy to work with, particularly on cross-border disputes." Chambers UK 2017 - Commercial Dispute Resolution

Michael enters the full rankings this year following his taking of silk in 2014. "Clients simply love Michael. A smooth and forceful advocate, who is brilliantly clever and and a great team player"."Extremely diligent and someone with first-class legal analysis". Chambers UK 2016

"An iron fist in a silk glove when in court." "He's fantastic at seeing the wood for the trees and being able to navigate all of the complexities in a case. He makes matters simple so that both the client and judge understand his position." Chambers UK 2015 – Commercial Dispute Resolution

"Very hard-working, very thorough and very clever." Chambers UK 2015 – Energy & Natural Resources

"Michael Fealy provides clients with ‘a rare combination of top-level commercial, insolvency and cross border experience.’ Chambers UK  – Commercial Dispute Resolution

“Michael Fealy’s energy work covers litigation, arbitration and expert determination. He ‘adds real value to the client’s case. He is thoroughness personified and is always alive to the commercial angles of any dispute.” Chambers UK  – Energy & Natural Resources

“Michael Fealy has a 'real strength of conviction, which he supports with wonderfully considered legal argument.’” L500  – International Arbitration

Michael has recently acted for the defendant in Canyon Offshore v GDF Suez [2014] EWHC 3810 (Comm) & [2015] BUS.L.R 578, an important decision concerning the jurisdiction of the English courts in contractual matters. The case is on appeal.

Michael acts for the defendants in Ipsos -v- Aegis, a £200 million claim for damages for fraud and breach of warranty following a share purchase. Michael has apppeared in applications striking out large parts of the claim [2015]EWHC 117 (Comm) and [2015] EWHC 1726 (Comm).

Michael acted in the long running dispute concerning control of the Connaught, Berkeley and Claridges hotels: Re Coroin [2014] BCC 14 and Misland v McKillen [2014] EWHC 3859 (Ch). More recently this has involved challenges to the jurisdiction of the English court to deal with further disputes concerning control of the hotels.

Michael also acted for the claimant in Habib Bank v Central Bank of Sudan [2014] EWHC 2288 (Comm) and obtained judgment for US$150m.

Michael also acted for the claimant in Primary Insurance v RBS [2014] RPC 26, an important decision concerning banking confidentiality, and the liability of third parties for breach of confidence.

Michael continues to act for the claimant in Swallowfalls v Monaco Yachting and Technology [2014] 2 Lloyds LR 50 (CA), [2013] EWHC 236 (Comm) and [2015] EWHC 2013 (Comm). The dispute concerns the interpretation of a loan agreement and the relationship between conflicting dispute resolution procedures under a construction contract and a loan agreement.

Michael has also developed an expertise in dealing with disputes under the Consumer Credit Act 1974 as part of his pro bono practice, representing and advising individuals sued by bankruptcy annulment lenders. Consolidated Finance v McCluskey [2012] EWCA Civ 1325.

Michael appeared as sole counsel for the appellant in ParkingEye v. Somerfield [2013] QB 840. The Court of Appeal expressly applied for the first time the concept of proportionality in determining whether the defence of illegality should apply to a claim for breach of contract.

Michael appeared in RTS Flexible Systems Ltd v. Molkerei Alois Muller GmbH & Co [2010] 1 WLR 753, the first contract case in the Supreme Court, restating the principles for contract formation. He appeared as sole counsel at first instance in Macquarie International Investments Ltd v. Glencore [2009] EWHC 2267 Comm and subsequently with Ian Glick QC before the Court of Appeal ([2010] 1 CLC 1035), now the leading case on warranties on company accounts. More recently, he is engaged in disputes relating to: jurisdiction; breach of warranty in the context of the sale of online casino interests; alleged fraud in the context of high level employment; charges and exchange rates applied to financial spread betting; s127 Insolvency Act 1986 proceedings; Offset Retirement Agreements concerning Certified Emission Reductions (CERs) and Verified Emission Reductions (VERs); and variously concerning licence requirements and accreditation under the Feed-in Tariff (FIT) scheme.

Michael has experience in the High Court both at first instance and at the appellate level, including in the Criminal Court of Appeal, the Privy Council and Supreme Court. He has also had involvement in numerous international commercial arbitrations governed by a variety of rules, in FSA disciplinary proceedings and in expert determination.