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Practice Summary

Sandy Phipps is a leading commercial junior with a broad, multi-jurisdictional practice.  He has appeared before all levels of the English courts (including two Supreme Court appearances) and is instructed in connection with disputes in foreign courts and in arbitration. He is also developing a substantial advisory practice assisting clients with matters such as internal or regulatory investigations, English law issues arising in foreign disputes, and Parliamentary inquiries.       

Sandy has been instructed on some of the most high-profile commercial disputes of recent times.  These include the long running Algosaibi v Saad fraud dispute, the Berezovsky v Hine oligarch litigation, the NML v Argentina Supreme Court case on state immunity, the Plevin v Paragon Personal Finance Supreme Court case on unfair relationships, the Libyan Investment Authority v Societe Generale bribery dispute, and the Bluewaters v Ecclestone Formula One litigation.

Now in his tenth year of practice at the Bar, Sandy has won praise from his peers as “one of the stars of his generation” (Chambers and Partners) and as “having maturity far beyond his call” (Legal 500).  In 2017 he was named by Legal Week as one of its ‘Stars at the Bar.’  In light of his experience he is routinely instructed as sole Counsel on complex commercial disputes, many of which are in the Commercial Court.  He also has extensive experience working as part of broader, silk-led teams on very substantial cases.

Sandy has particular experience with banking disputes, whether arising in the retail, commercial or investment baking contexts.  Before coming to the Bar he was a litigator in Freshfields’ banking disputes group (2006 to 2009), and his experience during this period included a secondment to the litigation team at Goldman Sachs.  He is therefore familiar with banking documents of all descriptions, including the ISDA form, syndicated lending documentation, brokerage agreements, documentary credits, guarantees and bills of exchange.  Additionally, a number of his recent banking cases have involved advising on the interaction between civil claims and regulatory or criminal investigations by agencies like the Financial Conduct Authority, the Serious Fraud Office and the United States Department of Justice.

Alongside his practice, Sandy maintains an active interest in academic law.  He has published in areas including banking law, contract, jurisdiction and civil procedure.  He is a regular contributor to the Journal of International Banking & Financial Law and writes the chapter on guarantees in one of the leading banking law textbooks.

Sandy is ranked in the legal directories in the areas of Commercial Dispute Resolution and Banking and Finance.  Legal Week has described him as “outstanding – genuinely first class” and someone who “gets things done by combining diplomacy with steel where needed.”  Elsewhere it has been said that he is “decisive, shows excellent attention to detail and offers sound commercial advice” (Chambers and Partners), a “pleasure to work with and very tactically astute” (Legal 500), and “very attuned to what solicitors really want from counsel” (Chambers).

Chambers & Partners (Banking & Finance) 2020 "A calm and thoughtful advocate, who can reduce complex problems to simple propositions."

Chambers & Partners (Commercial Dispute Resolution) 2020"Can digest a large amount of material quickly to provide sound commercial, legal and tactical advice, and shows excellent attention to detail." "A really excellent junior who is thorough and user-friendly."

Legal 500 (Commercial Litigation) 2019 - "Has a razor-sharp brain that cuts to the answer quickly and with no nonsense."

Legal 500 (Banking & Finance) 2019 - "Extremely user friendly and responsive, with an excellent client manner."

Legal 500 (Commercial Litigation) 2018 - "Great to work with, very able, and an impressive all round contributor to the team effort."

Legal 500 (Banking and Finance) 2018 - "Very user friendly, commercial, and has an excellent memory for facts and law."