Dan has a broad practice encompassing all types of commercial disputes, and sports law. He is also an expert in costs. He is ranked as a leading barrister in these fields by Chambers & Partners, Legal 500 and Who’s Who Legal, who describe him as “incredibly talented”, “worth his weight in gold”, “authoritative” and “very commercial, very thorough and also very creative”. He has also been praised as someone who “can put his hand to almost anything”, “commits fully to the cause” and delivers “a seamless service to clients”. Consistent with this in 2014 Legal Week named Dan in their annual “Stars at the Bar” report as one of the leading barristers under 10 years’ call practising at the commercial and Chancery Bar. He prides himself on being tenacious and dynamic in his advocacy, legal arguments and strategic thinking, and always strives to achieve the best possible outcomes for his clients.
Dan joined 4 New Square after training and practising as a solicitor-advocate at City firm Herbert Smith (now Herbert Smith Freehills). He has also worked as a litigator in the British Virgin Islands for leading offshore firm Conyers Dill & Pearman. One of only a handful of individuals at the Bar with this breadth of litigation experience, he is a team player who is typically instructed against more senior practitioners in substantial disputes in the High Court and in arbitral tribunals or as junior to a QC on bigger cases. Quite exceptionally for a barrister of his year of call, and reflecting his wider litigation experience and the trust placed in him by clients, he has appeared as sole advocate in both the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.
More information about Dan’s specific areas of practice is set out below, and further details can be accessed through the links on the left hand side of this page.
Commercial litigation and arbitration
Dan's commercial case-load is broad: he is instructed on all kinds of business disputes, including relating to trade, financial services, company and partnership fall-outs, corporate insolvency, insurance and re-insurance and professional liability in a commercial context. He also has a strong professional interest in civil fraud. Dan is highly numerate and, having worked for two investment banks at the start of his career, is comfortable dealing with sophisticated financial instruments and complex corporate structures where necessary.
His international background - a fluent French speaker, he was educated in the French, British and American systems and has worked in London and Paris as well as the Caribbean - means he is also an ideal choice for disputes with a cross-border or overseas element. He has expertise in all aspects of private international law, enjoys engaging with foreign law and has been involved in a number of high-value international arbitrations as well as in claims for enforcement of foreign judgments.
On the sports law front, Dan has quickly developed a reputation as one of the leading barristers in this arena. A former international standard rowing cox and past member of the British Rowing Council and the Committee of Leander, Britain's leading rowing club, he has first-hand experience of the kinds of legal issues that can arise in sport. He acts for governing bodies, athletes, clubs, agents and other entities on a wide range of contentious and non-contentious matters. He sits on Sport Resolutions’ Panel of Arbitrators and the Lawn Tennis Association’s Disciplinary Panel, giving him valuable judicial perspective, and is a director of the British Association for Sport and Law.
As for costs, Dan is a specialist in cases raising novel or difficult legal issues. He has appeared numerous times led and unled in the Senior Courts Costs Office and on appeals therefrom, and brings a thorough understanding of the law, detailed research and creative thinking to every instruction. He assisted Lord Justice Jackson with his review of costs in civil litigation and has been involved in numerous matters arising out of the subsequent reforms.
Publications / Academic Background
Dan is recognised as an expert by the journals publishing in his practice areas and has recently written for (amongst others) the Journal of the New York State Bar Association and the Journal of International Banking and Financial Law, on topics such as worldwide freezing orders and the ongoing cross-border Lehman Brothers insolvency.
Before commencing practice Dan gained prize-winning first class degrees from the University of Edinburgh (incorporating a year at the University of California, Berkeley) and the University of Oxford, where he was elected to a scholarship. He also taught trusts law at the University of Southampton.