Atkin Chambers Barristers
Omar practises in the fields of construction, engineering and energy. Beyond these specialist fields, he also has experience in a wide range of other commercial practice areas.
In addition to his drafting and advisory work, Omar appears as a sole advocate in the High Court and County Courts, and as junior counsel in larger matters. He is also familiar with the adjudication, arbitration and mediation processes.
Omar has experience of the full spectrum of construction and engineering disputes, ranging from minor residential building works to complex international projects. He is familiar with many of the standard forms of construction contract, including JCT, NEC3 and FIDIC. Examples of his work include:
• Advising on claims in respect of defects in new build housing against a developer and contractor (including potential claims under NHBC warranties and the Defective Premises Act 1972).
• Advising on claims against a contractor and architect for defects and property damage arising out of residential renovation and extension works (JCT Minor Works).
• Acting for an employer in a contractor’s claim for payment on a certificate issued under a JCT Minor Works contract and a counterclaim for damages in respect of defective works and restitution of overpaid sums.
• Drafting proceedings on behalf of contractors (both in Court and for arbitration) for payment of sums certified.
• Instructed as junior counsel for a local authority defending a contractor’s final account claim. Advised on privilege and disclosure issues during preparation for trial. (Domestic arbitration; ICE Measurement, 7th Edition).
• Instructed as junior counsel on behalf of a property developer defending a demolition contractor’s claim for its final account and loss and expense. (Technology and Construction Court; JCT Construction Management Trade Contract).
• Drafting advice for a charterer’s P&I insurer on a claim under indemnity provisions in a shipbuilding contract. Issues included the validity of an assignment of contract rights and the interpretation of exclusion clauses.
• Instructed as both sole and junior counsel in numerous case management conferences and interim applications in the Technology and Construction Court.
• Instructed as junior counsel for a consortium of international oil and gas companies and state-owned energy companies in a claim under a parent company guarantee for completion costs following termination of an EPC contract for construction of a gas pipeline in West Africa.
• Instructed as junior counsel for an energy company in connection with a contractor’s claim for additional payment in respect of unexpected ground conditions encountered during construction of a wind farm. Advised on expert evidence required. (NEC3, Option A).
• Advising on the correct construction of contractual provisions for the charter of a oil drilling rig to be used in an offshore exploration campaign.
Omar has experience of negligence claims against a wide range of different professionals, including architects, solicitors and accountants. Examples of his work include:
• Instructed as junior counsel in a claim against an architect / design consultant for negligent design and contract administration in the construction of containment level 3 microbiological laboratories.
• Advising on, and drafting, a Reply and Defence to Counterclaim in an action for unpaid solicitors' fees met with a counterclaim alleging negligence in the conduct of litigation.
• Drafting a Letter of Claim under the Professional Negligence Pre-action Protocol, alleging negligence in the drafting of an LLP agreement and subsequent breaches of fiduciary duty.
• Advising a restaurateur on the potential for a claim against a former accountant for negligent advice on VAT liability in respect of cold takeaway foodstuffs.
• Instructed to advise and defend an architect in relation to allegations of negligent over-certification and alleged advice in connection with the conversion of a hotel into residential units.
• Drafting advice on potential challenges to the tribunal’s jurisdiction in an ICC arbitration.
• Drafting a skeleton argument resisting an application for a partial award in an ICC arbitration concerning the construction of roads in Eastern Europe. Attending the hearing of the dispute.
• Drafting a skeleton argument for the appeal of an arbitral award concerning the construction of a hospital (FIDIC General Conditions of Contract 1st Ed., 1999).
• Instructed as sole counsel on behalf of a subcontractor in the adjudication of a final account claim concerning the supply and installation of balustrades. The claim gave rise to jurisdictional issues concerning costs and whether more than one dispute had been referred to the adjudicator.
• Instructed as junior counsel on behalf of a local authority in an adjudication concerning the interpretation of maintenance obligations and payment provisions in a PFI contract for the provision of social housing.
• Instructed as junior counsel on behalf of a local authority in a Part 8 claim for a declaration that an adjudicator had acted without jurisdiction in reaching a decision where more than one dispute had been referred.
• Drafting written submissions on jurisdiction and natural justice for a summary judgment application to enforce an adjudication decision. Attending the hearing in the Technology and Construction Court.
• Instructed as sole counsel in an application seeking summary enforcement of an adjudicator’s decision. Summary judgment was resisted on the basis of allegations that claims had been fraudulently submitted to the adjudicator.
• Drafting (as junior counsel) a Referral Notice for a local authority seeking declarations as to the proper amount owed to a contractor, payment of liquidated damages, and restitution of overpaid sums. (NEC3 2005 Ed., Option C).
• Advising the organisers of a music festival on their potential liability for conversion and trespass to goods and their prospects of a successful counterclaim for trespass to land.
• Drafting a Defence and request for further information in relation to a misrepresentation claim against a professional association for healthcare practitioners.
• Drafting proceedings (as junior counsel) on behalf of a telephone marketing company for unpaid invoices and damages for repudiatory breach of a lead generation contract.
• Appearing as sole counsel in a wide variety of interim hearings in the High Court and County Courts including:
o Seeking Part 36 costs consequences for a defendant’s offer only narrowly bettered at trial.
o Resisting an application for relief from sanction (restoration of the claim after strike out).
o Making an application to strike out a claim for payment on the basis on a compromise agreement.
o Resisting an application to annul a bankruptcy order, pursuant to section 282(1) of the Insolvency Act.
o Seeking an interim charging order over property held by a judgment debtor.
• Witney Town Council v Beam Construction (Cheltenham) Ltd
 EWHC 2332 (TCC);  BLR 707 (Akenhead J.)
• West African Gas Pipeline Company Ltd v Willbros Global Holdings Inc.
 EWHC 396 (TCC); 141 Con L.R. 151 (Ramsey J.)
Prior to joining Atkin Chambers, Omar undertook a year’s pupillage at another leading commercial set, where he gained experience in a wide range of commercial practice areas including:
• Conflict of Laws and Jurisdiction
• Banking and Finance
• Professional Negligence, Regulation and Discipline
• Consumer Credit
• Share Purchase and Asset Sale Agreements
Omar has marshalled two High Court Judges:
• Mr Justice Akenhead (TCC): October 2010
• Mr Justice Paul Walker (QBD): September 2006
Omar is a TECBAR accredited adjudicator.
2011: MA (Oxon) (Keble College, University of Oxford)
2009: BVC (BPP Law School, Holborn)
2008: BCL (Keble College, University of Oxford)
2007: BA Jurisprudence (Keble College, University of Oxford)
College Scholarship (Keble College), 2005 – 2007
Harris Prize (Keble College), 2007
Slaughter and May Prize (University of Oxford), 2005
Dartmouth Scholarship (Keble College / Dartmouth College, NH, USA), 2005
Technology and Construction Bar Association
Commercial Bar Association
Society of Construction Law