Skip to content
Sub practice
Sub practice

Commercial and Contract Disputes

As one of the world's leading litigation practices, Allen & Overy has enormous experience litigating, arbitrating and resolving corporate and commercial disputes.

Whether it is a dispute involving a merger and acquisition/sale, commercial contract or business competition, our litigators take a practical, commercial approach.

After a thorough analysis of the law and facts, we work with our clients to fashion the right approach: is the dispute appropriate for aggressive litigation, in which case we fight to win, or is a more nuanced approach to resolving the dispute called for?

In each situation, our global network means we can deliver accurate, commercial advice quickly, wherever the dispute takes place. If the dispute covers multiple jurisdictions, our local experts on the ground can quickly form an international team. Our lengthy experience means we know what to expect and how to achieve results. We never lose sight of the need to tailor our approach to the needs of the client we are representing, whether they are a large corporate undertaking or a smaller enterprise.

News & insights

Coloured wool

Publications: 22 OCTOBER 2019

Unilateral notice under an SPA not sufficient to stop limitation period expiring

A unilateral notice relating to a tax liability under a share sale and purchase agreement was not a valid notice within the relevant limitation period for a claim. The construction of a unilateral notice must be viewed objectively, having in mind the relevant factual context. As a matter of construction, the notice had not been sufficiently clear as to which provision of the SPA it related to. The case is a cautionary tale for those involved in sending (or receiving) notices under a contract: (1) Stobart Group Ltd (2) Stobart Rail Ltd (formerly WA Developments Ltd) v (1) William Stobart (2) William Andrew Tinkler [2019] EWCA Civ 1376

Read more
Coloured wool

Publications: 22 OCTOBER 2019

Rectification revisited by the Court of Appeal

The Court of Appeal has clarified that the correct test for rectification of a contract for common mistake will depend on whether or not there is a prior concluded contract (eg an oral agreement). If there is, an objective test will continue to apply. Where there is not, the court will need to decide whether the parties subjectively had a mutually acknowledged common intention that mistakenly was not reflected in the contract ultimately agreed. This endorsement of a subjective test will place a higher evidential burden on parties claiming common intention mistake. Keeping detailed and contemporaneous records of negotiations will be even more important in the future: FSHC Group Holdings Ltd v GLAS Trust Corp Ltd [2019] EWCA Civ 1361

Read more

Publications: 16 AUGUST 2019

State of play: a review of sovereign immunity cases

A tanker truck, converted into a bomb, was detonated near the north face of building #131 at the Khobar Towers complex in Saudi Arabia shortly before 10 pm on 25 June 1996, according to the 2001 U.S. federal grand jury indictment. It killed 19 U.S. service men and injured hundreds. Some 23 years later, in Heiser et al v Iran, the English High Court had to consider whether 12 U.S. civil judgments relating to this and other terrorist incidents could be enforced in the UK. It decided they could not.

Read more
UK Consultation

Publications: 26 JULY 2019

UK consultation on enhancing modern slavery statements: beyond minimum compliance

The UK’s Modern Slavery Act 2015 (the Act) was heralded as the first legislation of its kind globally and is thought to have inspired a number of other governments to introduce their own supply chain transparency and due diligence laws. 

Read more

Compact contract

Wooden jenga blocks scattered across a table

A brief look at topical issues in contract law

A blog where experts from Allen & Overy analyse the latest contract law themes and developments, and what they mean for your business.

Recognition