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Ben Hubble QC


Ben has acted and continues to act in the major lawyers liabilities’ claims of the day. Ben’s expertise covers all areas of lawyers liabilities, including in particular lender litigation, defective tax and investment schemes, mishandled litigation, failed joint ventures and confidentiality/privilege issues. Multi-party actions are a particular interest. He acted for the majority of the 650 odd firms of solicitors sued in the TAG Litigation and for the lead defence group in the CLE Litigation. He successfully resisted the application made on behalf of miners for a Group Litigation Order arising from alleged misappropriation of damages paid under the Coal Miners Compensation Scheme. He acted for the solicitor’s firm sued in the Innovator Litigation. He acted for one of the Major Defendants in the Right to Buy Litigation.

Examples of cases leading to judgments include:

  • (1) Ocean Finance & Mortgages Ltd (2) Ocean Money Ltd (Claimants) v Oval Insurance Broking Ltd (Defendant) & (1) Senior Wright Ltd (2) Senior Wright Indemnity Ltd (Third Parties) [2016] EWHC 160 (Comm)
  • E-surv v Goldsmith Williams [2015] EWCA Civ 1147 in which Ben successfully argued that the Bowerman reporting duty on solicitors survives the imposition of the CML Handbook   
  • Hawksford Trustees Ltd v Halliwells [2015] EWHC 2996 (Ch) in which Ben’s client recovered c. £4m having established that a limitation of liability clause was not incorporated into the retainer
  • AIG Europe Ltd v ILP [2015] EWHC 2398 (Comm) which is the leading case on aggregation in solicitors claims
  • Watson Farley & Williams v Ostrovizky [2014] EWHC 160 (QB), [2015] EWCA 457 where a £10m+ claim against Ben’s client was dismissed with indemnity costs
  • the Innovator Litigation [2012] EWHC (Comm) 1321 in which, after a 16 week trial, all claims against the solicitor Defendants were dismissed; the case is presently on appeal
  • claim against innocent partner said to be liable for alleged dishonest involvement of fellow partner in some 500 odd conveyancing transactions, and consideration of the no privilege in iniquity exception: Allied Surveyors Plc v Newcastle Home Loans Limited & Others [2010] EWHC 1548 (Ch)
  • claim against solicitors for losses said to be suffered by pension scheme due to failure to ensure board approval for transaction involving related parties: Youlton v Charles Russell (a firm) [2010] EWHC 1032 (Ch)
  • claim by former leaseholder for failure to serve notice under 1954 Act said to result in loss opportunity to develop jewellery business: Nahome v Last Cawthra Feather Solicitors [2010] PNLR 19
  • claim by ATE Insurer against personal injury solicitors alleging vetting breaches; won preliminary issue on limitation in relation to when actual damage accrued and successfully resisted appeal to Court of Appeal: Axa Insurance Limited v Akhtar & Darby Sols & Ors [2010] PNLR 10 CA, [2010] 1 WLR 1662
  • ruling on validity of service of Claim Form by fax and consideration of new form of CPR 6: Andrew Brown v Innovatorone plc and others [2009] EWHC 1376 (Comm); [2009] WLR (D) 205
  • claim against solicitors for alleged mishandling of underlying commercial litigation: Watson v Irwin Mitchell [2009] EWHC 1376 (Comm)
  • circumstances in which solicitor obliged to afford access to client files: R (on the application of Revenue & Customs Commissioners) v W [2008] EWHC 2780
  • claim by trustee in bankruptcy of former client alleging conveyancing negligence and missed negotiation opportunity: Dayman v Lawrence Graham [2008] EWHC 2036 (Ch)
  • claim for lost opportunity to defend possession proceedings said to result in loss of West Country Hotel: Veitch v Avery [2008] PNLR 7

In addition, Ben has acted and continues to act on large numbers of complex and high value cases, about which confidentiality means relatively little can be said. Some examples include:

  • acting for claimants and defendants on large-scale lender litigation, including dealing with consideration of appropriate causes of action, interaction with contributory negligence and the measure of damage
  • acting on a claim for $100m + loss said to have been suffered by re-insurers as a result of class action in the US being rendered more expensive due to destruction of evidence by defendant solicitors
  • acting for defendant city firm on £25m+ claim arising from consequences of service of notice extending charters for freight vessels
  • acting for claimant on claim for £8m for unauthorized settlement of Sempra type claim against HMRC
  • acting for defendant on claim for £5m for alleged bad advice on attempt to takeover board of company
  • acting for claimant on claim in BVI alleging that on island company officers facilitated unauthorized sale of beneficiary’s property in Brazil