Call: 1989 QC: 2013
"Combining high intellect and commercial mindedness”, “utterly fantastic in the defence of substantial claims” and “well known for her expertise in really complex points”, Fiona is held in high regard for her "splendid courtroom performances" and "superb advocacy based on strong analysis". Chambers & Partners 2013 confirms that Fiona “meets with universal acclaim” for the “excellent quality of her work”, is “a standout practitioner” who is “charmingly brilliant with clients” and “her drafting is second to none”.
In a rare dual nomination success, Fiona was shortlisted for the Junior of the Year Award in both the Construction category and the Professional Negligence category at the 2012 Chambers & Partners Bar Awards. She won the Award for Construction Junior of the Year 2012.
Fiona is ranked by Chambers UK (2010 – 2013) in Band 1 for Professional Negligence, in Band 1 for Construction and as the only Band 1 junior for Professional Negligence (Technology and Construction); and by Chambers Global in Band 1 for Construction. The Legal 500 ranks her as a Leading Junior for both construction and professional negligence work.
Fiona’s practice focuses upon commerce and construction. In the field of professional liability, her particular expertise in claims against construction professionals is well-known. She also undertakes substantial construction, transport and engineering cases for employers and contractors, as well as recovery claims for property insurers (fires and floods). Similarly, she is an expert in high-value claims against investment managers, accountants, auditors, insurance brokers, valuers and lawyers; but she is just as often instructed in commercial disputes without a professional liability dimension, especially insurance and reinsurance disputes. Following her postgraduate work in the field of securities regulation, Fiona has a particular interest in financial services law. In short, Fiona enjoys any case with a significant technical content (whether the technicality is financial, scientific or legal) and which involves working as a team with solicitors, experts and lay clients. She relishes the challenge of choosing and using different dispute resolution strategies to achieve the best result for her clients, especially in multi-party disputes.
Fiona appears regularly in the TCC and in the Commercial Court, on appeal, and in arbitrations and mediations. She has provided early neutral evaluations and “paper arbitration” awards. She is a TECBAR-accredited adjudicator.
Fiona has been ranked as one of the foremost leading juniors in the fields of Professional Negligence, Construction and Professional Negligence: Technology and Construction for many years, by both Chambers UK and The Legal 500.In Chambers UK (2013) she is 'recognised as one of 4 New Square's top juniors' who 'meets with universal acclaim''. Described as "the whole package - she is charmingly brilliant with clients, and her drafting is second to none'. In Chambers UK (2012) solicitors report that she provides "superb advocacy based on strong analysis", is "down to earth, reasonable and tough when necessary" and "excellent at professional negligence generally". Chambers UK (2011) noted that clients admire her “deep knowledge of the law”, her “pleasant and persuasive advocacy”, her “ability to analyse facts quickly and efficiently” and “the ease with which she deals with complex counterfactual scenarios”, so that she is "hugely in demand". Chambers Global (2011) reports that she is "highly impressive in court, with excellent skills of judgment." Chambers UK (2010) described her as “tough, charming and intelligent”, “gutsy and fearless” and “a force to be reckoned with”. While describing Four New Square as “without doubt the top set in the field of professional negligence”, the Legal 500 (2010) described Fiona as “particularly good” and (2011) as a "standout junior". In 2009, she was described in the Legal 500 as “fantastic, especially on paper. Her written arguments always look right.” In earlier editions of the directories, Fiona was described as “fearless in the courtroom and a wonderful orator”; “exceptionally bright and pragmatic”; “tough and very popular”; having “real presence in court" and “an impressive ability to handle difficult judges”; “an excellent advocate”. Fiona is among the very small number of junior barristers who have been ranked as international leaders in the field of construction law by Chambers Global (2010, 2011).
Fiona has been an Editor of Jackson and Powell on Professional Negligence (Sweet & Maxwell, 6th edition, 2007) since the 3rd edition (1992). She writes the chapters on Construction Professionals and Expert Evidence.
She is a member of the Technology and Construction Court Bar Association (TECBAR), the Commercial Bar Association (COMBAR), the Society of Construction Law (SCL), the Professional Negligence Bar Association (PNBA) and the Chancery Bar Association (ChBA).
M.A. (Cantab) LL.M. (Cantab)