Alex Hall Taylor


B.A. (Bristol) Dip. Law

Tel: +44 20 7822 2075
Email Clerk:

Year of Call: 1996

Conversational French


 L500 Leading Individual    

Shortlisted for Chambers & Partners Professional Negligence Junior of the Year 2015

“Notable for having a very relaxed demeanour, that masks a ferocious intellect”, Alex is a strong, modern, commercial litigator known for leading and working well in large teams of litigators.  He is recognised for providing clear advice and calm tactical guidance, and for setting and delivering strategic goals.  Alex prides himself in developing strong working relationships and in quickly gaining the confidence of those instructing and working with him, including those from other jurisdictions.

The breadth and strength of Alex’s practice and expertise is reflected in his ranking by Chambers & Partners and the Legal 500 in 2016 as a leading junior across four significant areas of work:

Banking & Finance (Legal 500) and Financial Services (C&P)

Chancery Commercial (C&P, where his handling of offshore trust disputes is specifically mentioned)

Civil Fraud (C&P)

Professional Negligence (both Legal 500 and C&P).

Nominated for Professional Negligence Junior of the Year in the 2015 Chambers UK Bar Awards, Alex is also the only member of chambers ranked for Chancery Commercial work and for Civil Fraud work. He is our only practising junior barrister ranked for Banking & Finance work.  He is our only senior junior ranked in four separate areas of work.

The current editions of the directories quote clients, opponents and leaders saying about Alex:

"He's just got everything, and is fantastically hard-working. He has the most reassuring presence in court."

"Confident, clear and cool-headed, and he has an impressive grasp of the detail as well as the bigger picture."

"He is incredibly bright, brilliant with clients and is very good at explaining things in a clear manner even if they are quite complicated."

"First-rate work - he always keeps you in the loop, is very clear in conference and is good on the strategy."

"He's excellent. Client-friendly and hard-working, he's also fun, which is important."

"He has a wonderful, elegant style of advocacy and a calmness under pressure."

Alex has been ranked by the directories as a leading junior for many years.  According to past editions of the two directories, Alex is also appreciated for being “able to quickly assimilate large and complex matters and has an excellent manner in front of clients”.  He is also a “great team player”“a very talented intellect” who does “sterling work”, is “very client friendly”“responsive”“excellent to deal with on a day to day basis”, and has a “user friendly attitude in cases”.

Much of Alex’s work is financial in nature, involving banking, financial products, pensions, tax and trusts disputes both on and offshore.  A number of recent cases have involved disputes within IFA networks and due to consolidation within the financial services market.

Alex also practises across a wide range of professional liability work acting to bring and defend claims against solicitors, barristers, accountants, valuers, insurance brokers, tax advisers, pensions advisers, independent financial advisers and other financial services professionals.  In 2012-13 he was instructed in the case identified by the Lawyer as the “largest professional negligence” case of the year, Langstone Leisure v Pannone LLP.  In 2012 he achieved the summary dismissal of a US$50m claim against KPMG in the Commercial Court.  He is presently defending a claim relating to the management of Standard Life’s portfolio of shopping centres, and pursuing a claim for Barclays relating to the valuation of the Von Essen hotel group.

Alex benefits from having trained and spent his early years in practice in renowned chancery commercial chambers.  He therefore also has broad experience of company, partnership, insolvency, pensions, and property disputes.  He takes and defends claims against fiduciaries or those acting for or advising them, particularly professional company directors, trust administrators, and trustees.  These actions are frequently conducted in offshore jurisdictions.  Related insurance claims are a further area of expertise, Alex having acted for Excess Insurers in the recent Commercial Court dispute brought by Rathbones and Mr Egerton-Vernon, in relation to the cover available to him when acting in his capacity as a personal trustee of the Walker trusts in Jersey.

Alex’s particular expertise is in handling complex, multi-party, document heavy litigation in which he frequently leads more junior counsel.  A significant proportion of his cases involve advancing or defending allegations of civil fraud.  He is regularly instructed at short notice to seek, resist or discharge urgent injunctive and other pre-emptive relief, including freezing injunctions, search orders, Norwich Pharmacal and Bankers Trust orders.  In one year alone he had more than 20 such applications ranging across numerous jurisdictions.

Alex’s practice has a distinctly international flavour, having acted in disputes from Africa to Fiji, from St Lucia and the Cayman Islands to the Channel Islands, and from the BVI to Mauritius.  He has acted as sole counsel in appeals to the Privy Council from the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court.  He frequently travels abroad to meet clients, to appear in court, or to support local counsel.  Born in Sweden and spending part of his childhood in Singapore and then Malaysia, he is comfortable in an unfamiliar environment and enjoys travel and working with clients and lawyers in different jurisdictions.

Alex is a member of COMBAR, the Chancery Bar Association, the Professional Negligence Bar Association, the London Common Law & Commercial Bar Association and the South Eastern Circuit.  He undertakes work for the Bar Pro Bono Unit in London.


Alex wrote the “Property, Planning and Environment” chapter of Leigh-Ann Mulcahy’s Human Rights and Civil Practice (Sweet and Maxwell, London 2001)


International Arbitration

Alex has dealt with a number of UK and international arbitrations, relating to insurance and other commercial disputes.  He will happily work and participate in arbitrations abroad if required.  Recent arbitrations have involved coverage issues between insured and insurers, policy construction disputes, and a commercial arbitration involving financial instruments.  In Shuttari v The Solicitors’ Indemnity Fund [2007] EWCA Civ 244 Alex appeared before the Court of Appeal , defeating an argument that the policy’s arbitration provisions were void or inoperative on the basis that as membership of SIF was compulsory the policy terms were not freely entered into and therefore infringed ECHR Article 6 rights.


As one of our lateral recruits from specialist chancery commercial chambers, Alex spent his early years in practice immersed in all areas of chancery work from company and insolvency work, to partnership disputes, landlord and tenant, real property, pensions, wills, trusts and the administration of estates.  He developed and maintains a particular expertise in mortgage, guarantee and other domestic banking work, receiving instructions from most UK lending institutions.

This broad chancery background has since informed the development of Alex’s ongoing core practice, including his professional liability work which tends towards a chancery specialism.

Much of Alex’s work involves trusts, both domestic and offshore, and the actions of trustees and trust administration companies.

Alex deals with company, insolvency, joint venture, shareholder, director and partnership disputes of varying magnitude and subject matter from vacuum cleaners through to car parks and adult satellite television channels.

Alex also undertakes cases relating to real property, property development and landlord & tenant disputes (both commercial and residential) including the pursuit of leasehold enfranchisement.

Alex has particular expertise in seeking to vary or set aside trust and other arrangements.

Recent work and reported cases include:

Commercial Dispute Resolution

Alex has a strong commercial practice with particular emphasis on substantial, document-heavy group litigation, financial disputes and the issues and claims arising from corporate mismanagement and collapse.  His practice now involves a good mixture of being instructed as sole counsel, leading a team or working with a leader.

Alex acts and advises in all forms of commercial dispute from contractual claims to fall-outs between directors, shareholders or partners.  He frequently acts in civil fraud and tracing claims, often with an international element.  He has extensive experience of pre-emptive and tracing remedies (both within the UK and abroad) such as freezing injunctions, pre-action disclosure orders, search orders, and applications for and against banking institutions to reveal customer identity and asset information.

Alex will happily work outside the UK if required.  His work to date has taken him to Kenya, Mauritius, Canada, the BVI, the Cayman Islands and St Lucia.  He has conducted appeals to the Privy Council as sole advocate.

Alex regularly actively participates in alternative methods of dispute resolution, and adds value through results based advisory input and his recognition of the need to adopt a different advocacy style in mediation.

Recent and reported commercial cases include:

Reference should also be made to Alex’s Chancery profile, particularly in relation to corporate governance and trust related disputes.

Financial Services Regulation

He is technically excellent and provides firm and clear advice. - Legal 500, 2016 (Leading Junior in Banking & Finance)

"He has the ability to see the wood from the trees and drill down to what's important. He's extremely good on the paperwork, very sound and very commercially oriented." "Good at dealing with technical and regulatory issues affecting IFAs, he gives very clear advice and it feels like he knows what to do straight away." - Chambers & Partners (Leading Junior in Financial Services)

Alex has experience in advising as to the effect of the financial services regulatory framework, and conducts litigation in relation to the conduct of financial institutions and financial services professionals, including those involved in the selling and administration of mortgages, pensions, and other financial products.

Recent work involving financial services regulation has included:

Insurance & Reinsurance

Alex’s work in insurance largely concerns professional liability, BTE and ATE insurance although general experience arising from those fields (and through insurer-backed litigation) has also caused him to work in the wider insurance sphere.  He is frequently instructed by insurers and therefore accustomed to the complex balance of competing interests that may arise between insurers and their insured.

Alex has considerable experience of coverage and policy construction disputes, and his recent work in this field includes:

Professional Liability

Confident, clear and cool-headed, and he has an impressive grasp of the detail as well as the bigger picture.'  - Legal 500, 2016

Nominated for Professional Negligence Junior of the Year in the 2015 Chambers UK Bar Awards (result to be announced on 27 October 2015), Alex has an extensive professional liability practice, Alex has an extensive professional liability practice with a financial, commercial and chancery specialist focus.  His work in this field is therefore principally engaged in the conduct of solicitors, barristers, accountants/auditors, financial services professionals and surveyors/valuers.  He does not undertake work relating to personal injury or family claims, clinical practitioners or construction professionals.  He acts for both claimants and defendants.

Alex’s chancery background means that he is comfortable with professional liability claims arising from complex financial instruments and arrangements, trusts, tax schemes, pensions, insolvency and all kinds of property transactions.  Much of his work involves allegedly negligent tax planning, pensions, investment advice and schemes with an offshore element.  He is frequently asked to undertake claims and applications in mitigation of apparent losses, including seeking the rectification, variation or rescission of trust and other arrangements.

Alex sees a considerable number of new cases each year involving alleged negligence by solicitors in property and mortgage related transactions.

Alex is also always instructed in numerous lost litigation claims where careful consideration has to be given to what should reasonably and realistically have been achieved by competent solicitors and barristers.

Both Chambers & Partners and the Legal 500 have recognised Alex as a leading junior in the field of professional liability.  Amongst other praise, he has been referred to as “a very talented intellect” who does “sterling work”.

Accountants, Auditors & Actuaries

Alex’s understanding of accounts, international auditing standards and general audit methodology has been welcomed and praised by his Big Four clientele, who have instructed him (frequently directly under the DPA scheme) to act in numerous claims in England and around the world (often assisting local counsel and judiciary unfamiliar with professional liability claims and audit approach).

Recent experience includes:

Financial Services Professionals

Alex conducts and defends claims against financial institutions and financial professionals involving allegedly negligent advice or conduct, principally in connection with investment, pension and tax schemes both on and offshore.  He has had to consider and advise on the different financial regulatory systems of England, Jersey, the BVI, and Kenya.

Recent work in this field includes:


Alex’s considerable experience of lawyers’ liability work is very diverse, reflecting the broad range of work undertaken by both solicitors and barristers (although Alex tends to avoid personal injury, criminal, family, immigration or employment related work).  Alex’s cases tend to have a chancery or commercial aspect, and involve transactional work, general advice, or the conduct of litigation.  He also undertakes wasted costs work in relation to both solicitors and barristers.

Examples of recent, ongoing and reported cases include:

Surveyors & Valuers

Alex acts for both claimants and defendants in claims against surveyors and valuers, frequently as part of broader litigation also involving the alleged negligence of solicitors (for example in general lender litigation and claims involving mortgage fraud).

Alex’s recent experience includes:

Tax Related Claims

Alex is a directory ranked junior for professional liability, chancery commercial, civil fraud and financial services claims with particular and recognised expertise in tax related claims.  He is very regularly instructed in claims relating to tax advice and tax mitigation structures and schemes both on and offshore, often involving multiple jurisdictions.  He acts for Claimants or Defendants.

Over the past decade Alex has acted in large numbers of claims relating to film finance and capital losses schemes, remuneration/bonus/employee benefit trusts (EBTs), funded unapproved retirement benefits schemes (FURBS), employer financed retirement benefit schemes (EFRBS), intellectual property and technology schemes, private trust and offshore tax planning, and pension liberation schemes.  Many of these claims have involved multiple parties and multiple third party claims.  Alex often leads more junior members of chambers.  He has also brought in specialist tax silks in high value claims, and been selected as junior to tax silks who have praised his understanding and presentation of highly complex tax structures and legislation.  He is often selected for his ability to make complex scenarios readily comprehensible to clients and for his tactical overview.

Alex has also acted in numerous claims concerning negligent personal or corporate tax advice, in relation to income tax, capital gains tax, EIS/SEIS, inheritance tax, VAT and corporate taxes.  He has acted in numerous rectification and misrepresentation claims, and in actions to unwind trust and corporate structures that have not been fit for purpose or that have created unintended tax and other consequences.

Alex acts for claimants including private individuals, trustees in bankruptcy, liquidators, company directors, trusts, trustees and beneficiaries in pursuing professional tax advisers, accountants, trust companies and administrators, fund managers, and other fiduciaries.

Alex also regularly acts in defending specialist tax advisers, firms of accountants and financial advisers, solicitors and barristers, scheme administrators, trusts and trustees and other fiduciaries.  He has regularly specifically been requested by specialist tax counsel to act in their defence.  He has also had repeated instructions from one of the UK’s principal proponents of remuneration trusts/EBTs and pension liberation schemes.

Due to the highly sensitive nature of this work Alex does not identify cases by name, but recent instructions include:


Alex Hall Taylor is a CEDR accredited mediator and an arbitrator of commercial and general civil disputes, whether involving court-based litigation or not.  Alex is a practising commercial barrister of considerable experience and has been involved in the resolution of more than 1500 cases as he approaches 20 years in private practice.  He is ranked as a leading barrister by either or both of the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners in four particular and complementary areas of practice: Chancery Commercial, Civil Fraud, Financial Services and Professional Negligence.  Those areas provide the general focus for Alex’s selection for mediations and arbitrations. Alex is renowned for his people skills and ability rapidly to build relationships, trust and rapport.  He brings quick but detailed forensic analysis to any dispute, as well as a sense of realism and, when appropriate, humour.  The directories refer to Alex as being: “able to quickly assimilate large and complex matters and has an excellent manner”; “Notable for having a very relaxed demeanour, that masks a ferocious intellect” and that "He is incredibly bright, brilliant with clients and is very good at explaining things in a clear manner even if they are quite complicated." One professional client is quoted as saying: "He's excellent. Client-friendly and hard-working, he's also fun, which is important."

Alex has always considered dispute resolution methods away from the court room to be essential alternatives to trial, as they are the method by which the vast majority of cases are in fact resolved.  This led him to undertake CEDR’s course in commercial mediation, and to obtain accreditation.  He mediates and arbitrates disputes while continuing his litigation practice which continues to give him up-to-date insight as to how disputes might otherwise be determined.  Alex believes that the flexibility of the mediation process and the confidentiality of the arbitration process enhance the prospects of achieving the early and satisfactory resolution of most disputes.

In terms of mediation approach Alex preserves neutrality whilst reality testing each party’s case with them in private in order to make progress in the analysis and potential resolution of their dispute.  He does not believe that a mediator’s necessary neutrality should equate to passivity.  He takes an active and solution-based approach.  He will take as evaluative an approach as is appropriate to each case, and in consultation with the parties.  In addition to the traditional form of mediation, Alex also undertakes early neutral evaluations of cases or can provide an objective second opinion.  Alex will accept appointments for arbitrations conducted on paper or in hearing.

Although Alex is willing to mediate or accept appointments as an arbitrator in most fields of civil practice, the areas in which Alex has particularly relevant experience include:

Financial advice involving IFAs, banks, building societies including mis-selling cases

Legal advice: of solicitors, barristers, legal executives and conveyancing professionals

Accountant’s and auditor’s negligence

Corporate disputes

Corporate and employee fraud

Claims of civil fraud, deceit, dishonesty or misrepresentation

Company director disputes

Shareholder disputes

Contractual disputes


Art and media disputes including auctions, publishing, music, film, theatre, TV and digital media

Property disputes including landlord & tenant and real property

Pensions mis-selling

Offshore disputes

Breaches of trust or fiduciary duty

Trust disputes between trustees and/or beneficiaries

Tax and tax planning disputes