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Max joined Atkin Chambers as a tenant in September 2019, following the successful completion of his pupillage. He has gained experience at all stages of litigation, adjudication and arbitration, encompassing a variety of bespoke and standard form contracts including JCT, NEC and ACE forms, as well as PFI contracts.

Max graduated from Cambridge University with a starred double first in History. He ranked first in the country in two consecutive years at law school, on both the law conversion course and the Bar course. Max won first prize in the SCL Hudson Prize 2018 and has been published in the International Construction Law Review.

Max’s recent instructions have included appearing as sole counsel in the High Court and County Court. As junior counsel, Max is currently being led in a $2 billion international arbitration concerning a major airport in the Middle East, as well as in a High Court TCC claim relating to a large residential development project in London.

CONSTRUCTION, ENGINEERING AND INFRASTRUCTURE

  • Appeared as sole counsel in the High Court on various matters, including: successfully obtaining an interim injunction for a contractor; and successfully obtaining an indemnity costs order.
  • Acting as junior counsel in a multi-billion-dollar arbitration regarding a major airport in the Middle East.
  • Acting as junior counsel in three international arbitrations regarding the construction of shopping malls and a luxury resort in the Arabian Peninsula.
  • Acting as junior counsel in a TCC claim relating to a post-termination final account under an M&E contract on a large residential development in London, including preparing a security for costs application.
  • Regular appearances in the County Court, including to apply to set aside Default Judgment in a structural engineering dispute, and to object to the making of a Final Charging Order.
  • Drafted Defence and Counterclaim in a TCC claim relating to termination and defects on a development.
  • Drafted Particulars of Claim in a TCC claim relating to a defective car park.
  • Drafted Particulars of Claim in a dispute concerning the defective design of M&E works for a swing bridge.
  • Drafted amendments to a Defence and Scott Schedule in a TCC claim relating to student accommodation.
  • Drafted Defence to a claim for negligence, nuisance, trespass and breach of the Party Wall Act.
  • Drafted Reply and Defence to Counterclaim in a construction dispute relating to common law termination.
  • Drafted Defence on behalf of a bank to a claim calling on a performance bond.
  • Drafted skeleton arguments for: a summary judgment application; a preliminary issue trial regarding contractual responsibility for design works; permission to appeal a TCC judgment.
  • Drafted advice on numerous matters including: limitation periods; jurisdiction and governing law; assignment; a standstill agreement; merits of a claim against an Approved Inspector; effect of partial possession; procedure for obtaining a costs certificate; enforcement of a charging order; effect of a dispute resolution provision in a rail link contract; independent contractor defence and non-delegable duties; variations under a contract for asbestos removal; application of UCTA; effect of a limitation clause.
  • Drafted a Letter of Claim for a dispute regarding a contract for refurbishment works.

Max has advised on a number of matters relating to guarantees and bonds in a construction context, including: valid execution as a deed; lack of consideration; when and how a call on the guarantee/bond can be made.

Max also has experience of PFI work, including drafting: a skeleton argument contesting jurisdiction in a PFI dispute relating to road maintenance; and advice on limitation in a PFI dispute regarding defective cladding.

ENERGY AND UTILITIES

  • Drafted skeleton and grounds of appeal in relation to a TCC judgment regarding a biomass energy plant.
  • Drafted Defence and Counterclaim in a dispute relating to shutdowns in oil production of an FPSO.
  • Drafted advice on the defective design of parts of a waste processing and anaerobic digestion plant.
  • Drafted arbitration memorial relating to a power purchase agreement.
  • Drafted advice on the effect of retention of title clauses in a contract for the supply of solar panels.
  • Drafted Defence and RFI in a claim relating to the Carbon Emissions Reduction Target scheme.
  • Drafted advice for an offshore windfarm developer regarding rights to carry out surveys and injunctive relief.

PROFESSIONAL NEGLIGENCE

  • Acting as junior counsel in a multi-billion-dollar international arbitration on behalf of an architectural and project management firm, in a professional negligence dispute regarding a major airport in the Middle East.
  • Drafted Particulars of Claim in a TCC claim against an engineer and D&B contractor relating to a car park.
  • Drafted Particulars of Claim alleging negligence by mechanical engineers in designing a swing bridge.
  • Drafted skeleton argument for a defendant’s application for strike out/summary judgment on the basis of a lack of expert evidence supporting a professional negligence claim against a construction manager.
  • Drafted Defence and Contribution Notice in a professional negligence claim regarding septic tanks.
  • Drafted advice on measure of damages and the SAAMCO principle in a claim against a consulting engineer.
  • Drafted Defence in a defective design claim against architects relating to soffit insulation on balconies.

ADJUDICATION, ARBITRATION AND MEDIATION

  • Acting as junior counsel in a $2 billion international arbitration in a dispute over the design, procurement, and construction of a major airport in the Middle East. Individually responsible for producing the response to one section/package of the Statement of Defence and Counterclaim relating to passenger boarding bridges.
  • Acting as junior counsel (drafting memorial statements of claim) in three international arbitrations relating to the MEP works in the construction of two shopping malls and a luxury resort in the Arabian Peninsula.
  • Drafted two Part 8 TCC claims seeking: declaratory relief regarding the conclusiveness of a final account and the effect on the adjudicator’s jurisdiction; and a declaration that a second adjudication decision was made in excess of jurisdiction because it revisited a point previously decided.
  • Drafted skeleton argument for an application to enforce an adjudication decision relating to a final account.
  • Drafted adjudication referrals and responses including for an employer in a ‘smash and grab’ adjudication.
  • Drafted advice on: resisting enforcement of an adjudication decision on the grounds of non-crystallisation of a dispute; severance of part of a decision; set-off; the jurisdiction of one adjudicator to revisit a decision made in a previous adjudication; the effect of adjudication clauses which are non-compliant with the Scheme; options for a claimant where enforcement had been made subject to an unconditional stay.
  • Drafted arbitration memorial relating to a power purchase agreement.
  • Drafted skeleton argument for a stay under s.9 Arbitration Act 1996.
  • Drafted mediation position statement in a claim for negligence/nuisance arising from building works.

GENERAL COMMERCIAL, COMPANY AND INSOLVENCY

  • Appeared as sole counsel in the High Court (Insolvency and Companies List), successfully obtaining an interim injunction to restrain the presentation of a winding-up petition against the applicant company. Also appeared in the Companies Court Winding Up List to apply for a winding-up order.
  • Appeared as sole counsel in the Chancery Division, successfully obtaining an indemnity costs order.
  • Regular appearances in the County Court, including: in a road traffic accident trial; and to object to the making of a Final Charging Order.
  • Drafted a Defence to a claim by a PR company claiming payment following termination of their appointment.
  • Drafted Defence on behalf of a bank to a claim calling on a performance bond. Have also advised on numerous matters relating to bonds and guarantees, including enforceability and the requirements of calling on performance guarantees and on-demand bonds.
  • Advised on the drafting of a Settlement Agreement and a Standstill Agreement.
  • Drafted advice for a purchaser under a contract for the sale of a hotel.
  • Drafted skeleton argument resisting summary judgment in a claim under a vehicle credit hire agreement.
  • Various insolvency matters, including: advice in relation to an appeal against a decision on a creditor’s proof of debt under rule 14.8 of the Insolvency Rules; and drafting skeleton argument for a stay on the basis that the defendant had entered voluntary liquidation.
  • Drafted advice on numerous commercial, company and contract law matters, including: matters of contractual interpretation relating to various insurance policies; jurisdiction and governing law; limitation; agency; ratification; retention of title in goods and s25 of the Sale of Goods Act; the prospects of obtaining an interim injunction; Environmental Impact Assessment requirements .

QUALIFICATIONS, AWARDS AND PUBLICATIONS

2018 SCL Hudson Prize, 1st prize; Times Law Awards, runner-up
2017-2018 Bedingfield Scholar, Gray’s Inn
2017-2018 Bar Professional Training Course, BPP Law School, Outstanding (ranked 1st in country)
2016-2017 Graduate Diploma in Law, BPP Law School, Distinction (ranked 1st in country)
2013-2016 University of Cambridge, Trinity College, History BA (Hons), Starred Double First

  • Ranked 2nd in year in Part I, 3rd in Part II, ranked 1st on aggregate
  • Faculty of History Prize for Outstanding Performance
  • Earl of Derby Prize for highest distinction in History, Trinity College
  • James Webb Prize for the History of Ideas
  • Gordon Duff Prize, Cambridge University Library
  • Bowen Prize and Greaves Prize, Trinity College; Senior Scholarship, Trinity College

‘The Prevention Principle After North Midland v Cyden Homes: Time for Change?’ [2019] International Construction Law Review 375.