Ella joined Chambers as a tenant in September 2022, following the successful completion of her pupillage. Her practice covers all areas of Chambers’ core specialisms, including construction and engineering, technology, energy and natural resources, and professional negligence.

Ella has experience of all stages of litigation, adjudication and arbitration (including ad hoc, CIMAR, HKIAC, ICC, ICSID, LCIA, SIAC and UNCITRAL arbitrations) and has worked with a variety of bespoke and standard form contracts, including NEC, JCT and RIBA.

Ella’s recent instructions include acting as counsel for a major property development company in a multi-million pound construction adjudication and acting as counsel for a firm of chartered surveyors and architectural designers in a professional negligence claim concerning works undertaken to a listed building. She has also worked for barristers in Chambers on several high-value construction disputes.

Ella read Law at Oxford and has a Master of Laws in International and European Law from the University of Ghent. In addition to England and Wales, she also has experience of disputes under other systems of law (including Belizean, Korean and Swiss) and is admitted to practice in New York. Ella was awarded the Queen Mother Scholarship, Middle Temple’s most prestigious award to study for the Bar of England and Wales.

Ella previously lived and worked in France and Belgium, and has a reasonable working knowledge of French.

CONSTRUCTION, ENGINEERING AND INFRASTRUCTURE

  • Acting as counsel for a major property development company in a multi-million pound adjudication claim against a contractor for delay and defective works under a JCT trade contract for the design and construction of two multi-storey buildings.
  • Acting as counsel for a firm of chartered surveyors and architectural designers in a litigation concerning alleged breaches of its duties as contract administrator in connection with a build contract to remove dry rot from a listed building.
  • Acting as counsel for a firm of property development consultants in a claim for unpaid invoices for services it provided on two building projects.
  • Advising a property owner in relation to a prospective claim against a construction company for breach of contract following the contractor’s abandonment of the works, raising issues of unjust enrichment and fraud.
  • Acting as counsel for a builder against a property owner in a litigation concerning a damages claim for alleged defects under a contract for renovation works.
  • Assisted counsel acting for a Russian businessman in an LCIA arbitration (London seat, English governing law) regarding the construction and sale of two multi-use skyscrapers.*
  • Assisted counsel acting for an Asian State in a US$160 million SIAC commercial arbitration concerning the performance and termination of a major road construction contract.
  • Assisted counsel acting for an international oil company in an ad hoc UNCITRAL commercial arbitration (London seat, English governing law) arising from a tender process for the supply of equipment to an oil and gas project in Kazakhstan, concerning issues of contractual breach, misrepresentation and conspiracy.*
  • Assisted the adjudicator in an ad hoc adjudication (Zurich seat, Swiss governing law) between a German conglomerate and a Belgian construction company in an adjudication arising out of a concrete supply contract connected to the construction of a power plant.*

During pupillage, Ella undertook a number of discrete drafting assignments on construction disputes; including:

  • Drafted advice for a maritime construction company on the interpretation of a contract for the installation and building of pre-piling works, pin-piles and jackets for an offshore windfarm in East Asia.
  • Drafted advice to an engineering company on limitation issues arising under a contract for the supply of feed water heaters for an onshore oil-powered steam power plant project in Western Asia.
  • Drafted advice to a water company in relation to its dispute with an insurance company arising out of a performance guarantee bond provided under a contract for the construction of two new water mains.
  • Drafted advice for an electricity company on the interpretation of a joint venture agreement with another electricity company for the installation of an electricity grid.
  • Drafted advice to a project company on the construction of the terms of a PFI agreement with certain hospital trusts regarding a substantial multi-million pound dispute arising out of issues with the fire doors.
  • Drafted a defence for a construction business in a litigation arising out of a collaboration agreement relating to HS2.
  • Drafted advice to a concrete supplier on the interpretation of exclusion and limitation clauses in a supply contract in connection with the construction of a high-rise development.
  • Drafted an advice to a property maintenance company on the parameters for settlement, and drafted a skeleton argument in relation to an application for specific disclosure, in a claim arising under a multi-million pound contract for the inspection of fire doors.
  • Drafted advice for a university on the terms of a draft agreement in connection with a the construction of blocks of student accommodation.
  • Drafted an opinion for a local authority on the merits of the contractor’s extension of time request under a contract for the demolition, reconstruction and refurbishment of a high-rise building.
  • Drafted a skeleton argument for a property developer in its application for summary judgment in relation to a contractor’s claim against it for payment under a settlement agreement.
  • Drafted a skeleton argument for a build contractor in an application to adjourn the trial in a dispute concerning allegedly defective works to an office roof.
  • Drafted a skeleton argument for a construction company in a pre-action disclosure application brought in relation to a prospective claim by a car sales company for the allegedly defective construction of a car showroom.
  • Drafted advice on limitation and a particulars of claim for a private individual against a local authority for breaches arising out of a group repair scheme.
  • Drafted a note and procedural order for a case management conference in a HKIAC construction arbitration in connection with the issue of whether a contractor’s breach of contract which benefits the developer (due to a rise in property prices while the project was delayed) can be taken into account when assessing damages for the breach.
  • Drafted a note on issues of bifurcation and abuse of process for an African state in an LCIA arbitration (jurisdiction phase) arising out of an agreement for a long lease for the development of a hotel and tourist resort.
  • Drafted a note for an international construction company on the interpretation of an exclusion clause in an insurance policy in a claim against an insurance company.
  • Drafted a note on issues of promissory estoppel and fraud for a major property development company in an adjudication against a construction company.

* Cases worked on before joining Chambers.

ENERGY AND NATURAL RESOURCES

  • Assisted counsel acting for an oil and gas major in an ICC gas price review arbitration (Geneva seat, Swiss governing law) concerning the German pipeline gas market.*
  • Assisted counsel advising a Russian oil company on issues in connection with multiple-contracts in relation to a prospective HKIAC arbitration.*
  • Assisted the arbitrator in an ICC arbitration (London seat, English governing law), conducted in French, arising out of a farmout agreement.*

During pupillage, Ella undertook discrete drafting assignments in relation to an ad hoc UNCITRAL oil and gas arbitration in West Africa which raised issues of a technical nature, as well as accountancy issues.

* Cases worked on before joining Chambers.

ENFORCEMENT PROCEEDINGS

  • Advised the claimants in connection with the enforcement in England and Wales of a foreign court judgment for over US$150 million.*
  • Assisted counsel acting for the Attorney General of Belize in a dispute before the Caribbean Court of Justice raising constitutional law issues connected with the enforcement in Belize of a BZ$90 million LCIA arbitral award.*
  • Assisted counsel acting for a Hong Kong corporation in connection with the enforcement of a KRW166.6 billion ICC arbitral award (Hong Kong seat, English governing law) in Korea.*

* Cases worked on before joining Chambers.

OTHER COMMERCIAL

  • Acted as counsel for Transport for London at a costs hearing.
  • Acted for Swatch against Samsung in a significant IP dispute concerning the use of trade marks on smart watches.*
  • Assisted counsel acting for an international inter-governmental organisation in four consolidated commercial arbitrations arising under contracts for the provision of goods and services to it.*
  • Assisted counsel acting for a South American mining company in an ICC arbitration (London seat, English governing law) arising out of a dispute over supply of iron ore pellets under two long-term sale and purchase agreements.*
  • Assisted counsel acting for a leading African businessman in court proceedings in connection with the operation of an emerald mine in Zambia.*
  • Assisted counsel acting for a defendant in actions before English courts against multiple maritime car carriers.*
  • Assisted the sole arbitrator in a US$20 million ICC arbitration (London seat, Dutch governing law) arising out of an exclusive distribution agreement for several generic pharmaceuticals in the Middle East.*
  • Assisted the sole arbitrator in an ICC arbitration (Brussels seat, Belgian governing law) arising from a purchase order for agricultural equipment.*
  • Assisted the sole arbitrator in an ad hoc logistics arbitration (Brussels seat, Belgian governing law) between an American online retailer and its European supplier.*
  • Assisted the sole arbitrator in an ad hoc logistics arbitration (Brussels seat, Belgian governing law) between an American online retailer and its European supplier.*

During pupillage, Ella undertook a number of discrete drafting assignments in relation to a jurisdictional challenge before the Court of Appeal in a case against the Secretariat of State of the Holy See connected to criminal proceedings in the Vatican State.

* Cases worked on before joining Chambers.

 

INVESTMENT TREATY AND INTERNATIONAL

  • Assisted counsel acting for an Asian State against a major engineering company in an ICSID arbitration (jurisdiction phase) concerning a tender bid for a US$ multi-billion refinery improvement project.*
  • Assisted counsel acting for a Finnish national against Egypt in an UNCITRAL investment arbitration (merits phase) concerning an iron ore and steel producing concession.*
  • Assisted counsel acting for a major real estate developer against Croatia in an ICSID arbitration concerning the development of a luxury golf resort in Dubrovnik.*
  • Assisted counsel acting for private investors against Spain in an ICSID arbitration concerning claims of US$490 million arising out of a series of energy reforms affecting the renewables sector.*
  • Assisted counsel advising a biotechnology company regarding an investor-state arbitration related to a pharmaceutical drug approval process.*
  • Assisted counsel acting for over 900 Greek bond holders against Cyprus in an ICSID arbitration (jurisdiction phase) concerning losses resulting from Cyprus’ response to its financial crisis.*
  • Assisted counsel advising a Czech private investor regarding an investment arbitration against a European State concerning claims of judicial expropriation of real estate.*
  • Assisted counsel acting for a private investor against China in an investment arbitration regarding expropriation of agricultural land.*
  • Assisted the presiding arbitrator in the jurisdiction phase of an ICSID arbitration concerning an expropriation claim.*
  • Assisted counsel advising a State in relation to border negotiations with a neighbouring State.*
  • Assisted counsel advising a state-owned investment company in connection with negotiations on the terms of a new draft BIT.*
  • Assisted counsel advising a State with respect to an UNCLOS arbitral award and related island sovereignty and law of the sea issues.*

* Cases worked on before joining Chambers.

PUBLICATIONS

Puchyna, M., Kelly, J. and Rutter, E., Investment protection on the Belt and Road, 2 Journal of Subsoil Use and Law 176 (2019).

Assisted with drafting chapters of the second and third editions of Gary Born, International Commercial Arbitration.

CAREER, QUALIFICATIONS AND AWARDS

Date

 

Qualification

 

Oct 2019 – Aug 2021 Graduate Lawyer (Awaiting English Bar Qualification) – WilmerHale, London – International Arbitration Practice Group

 

Mar 2021 Bar Transfer Test, BPP University

 

April 2020 Admitted as a Solicitor of the Senior Courts of England and Wales

 

Dec 2019 Admitted as an Attorney and Counselor-at-Law of the Supreme Court of New York State

 

Jan 2019 – Mar 2019 Legal Intern – WilmerHale, London – International Arbitration Practice Group

 

May 2019 Queen Mother Scholarship, Middle Temple (Unclaimed)

 

May 2019 Harmsworth Entrance Exhibition, Middle Temple (Unclaimed)

 

Jul 2018 – Dec 2018 Trainee (“Stagiaire”) – Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Paris – International Arbitration Practice Group

 

Mar 2018 – Jun 2018 Legal Intern – Fietta LLP, London

 

Jul 2017 – Dec 2017 Trainee (“Stagiaire”) – Allen & Overy, Paris – International Arbitration Practice Group

 

Jan 2017 – Jun 2017 Legal Intern (“Juriste Adviseur”) – Everest Attorneys (legal assistant to Dr Herman Verbist), Ghent

 

Oct 2016 – Dec 2016 Research Assistant to Professor Maud Piers – University of Ghent, Department of Interdisciplinary Study of Law, Private Law and Business Law

 

May 2016 and Mar 2017 Legal Intern – De Mulemeester & De Brabandere (formerly Lexlitis Ghent) (legal assistant to Mr Dirk De Meulemeester), Ghent

 

2015 – 2016 LL.M. in International and European Law, University of Ghent (summa cum laude, 1st in year)

  • Ranked 14th out of 625 law schools in the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot
  • Team member in the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot; including semi-finalist (out of 16 teams) in the Brussels pre-moot and best individual oralist of that semi-final round against the University of Sydney
  • Team member in the Frits Kalshoven International Humanitarian Law Competition

 

2012 – 2015 Geoffrey Jones (Penreithin) Scholarship [Awarded four times]

 

2012 – 2015 BA in Jurisprudence, New College, University of Oxford (II.i)

  • Finalist (out of 12 teams) in the University of Oxford Monckton Chambers European Union Law Moot
  • Semi-Finalist (out of 24 teams) in the University of Oxford JustCite Procedural Justice Mooting Shield

 

 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Before transferring to the Bar, Ella practiced for two years as a solicitor and New York attorney in the international arbitration practice group of an international US law firm in London (WilmerHale), where she was a member of teams advising on and acting as counsel in high-value arbitrations and litigations, with a focus on complex multi-jurisdictional disputes concerning issues of English law.

Before that, Ella had undertaken intern- and traineeships (“stages”) for two years in the international arbitration practices of several leading law firms, including in the Paris offices of Freshfields (six months) and Allen & Overy (six months), where she assisted counsel in a number of international arbitrations across Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, the CIS, Europe and the Middle-East.

Before that, Ella spent six months working for arbitrators (Dr Herman Verbist and Professor Dirk De Meulemeester), which involved assisting at arbitral hearings and with drafting awards. Between that and graduating, Ella worked for three months as a research assistant to Professor Maud Piers in relation to a series of articles on international arbitration.

Ella is a member of COMBAR, TECBAR, SCL, Young ICCA, ICC YIAF, YIAG, HK45, CEPANI 40 and Young ICSID.