Omar Eljadi specialises in contractual and professional negligence disputes within the construction, engineering and energy sectors. He has acted for a wide range of clients based in the UK and internationally, including employers (state and private), contractors, and various types of professional.
Omar’s work frequently has an international dimension. He has experience of disputes concerning projects in Africa, the Middle East (including Dubai, Oman, Turkey and Jordan) and East Asia.
In addition to his advocacy, drafting and advisory work, Omar provides hands-on assistance from an early stage in a dispute, including during the pre-action process, disclosure, the preparation of factual and expert evidence, and interim applications or case management conferences.
Omar is recommended as a leading junior in the most recent editions of Chambers and Partners and Legal 500.
ENERGY AND NATURAL RESOURCES
ENERGY AND NATURAL RESOURCES
Omar has a particular interest in disputes arising out of energy and natural resources infrastructure projects, both foreign and domestic. His experience spans oil and gas projects, and a wide range of renewable resources projects, including wind farms, a hydroelectric dam, water pipelines and various process plants. He is also instructed in disputes arising out of commercial energy supply agreements.
OIL AND GAS
- 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.
- Advised on the correct construction of compensation provisions under a charter of an oil drilling rig to be used in an offshore exploration campaign. Drafted a defence to a claim for payment.
- Advised on frustration and termination of a charter of a drilling rig. Advised on the scope of an exclusion clause incorporated into the charter.
- Instructed as junior counsel in a dispute over responsibility for the costs of repairs to an FPSO provided as part of a contract for the processing, storage and delivery of petroleum.
- Twice instructed as junior counsel for a major UK energy company defending compensation event claims from contractors under contracts for the construction of onshore wind farms.
- Acting for the employer in a dispute concerning the termination of a contract for the design, supply and construction of a processing plant with cogeneration capability.
- Instructed as junior counsel for the contractor in a high value claim arising out of the termination of a hydroelectric dam project in the Middle East.
- Junior counsel for the contractor in a high value claim arising out of a pipeline project in the Middle East.
- Acting as junior counsel for a process designer defending a contractor for alleged defective design of the mechanical pre-treatment section of a waste processing and anaerobic digestion plant in England.
ENERGY SUPPLY DISPUTES
- Acted, as junior counsel, in a dispute concerning overcharging under an electricity supply agreement covering a major UK retailer’s network of stores.
- Instructed as junior counsel in an ICC arbitration concerning a claim for damages arising out of the termination of an energy supply agreement in Africa.
Omar is listed as a leading junior for professional negligence, with sources describing him as “Excellent” and praising his “very good attention to detail” (Legal 500, 2016 and 2017). He has experience of negligence claims against a wide variety of professionals. He specialises in claims against construction professionals, including architects, engineers and surveyors, but also has experience of claims against accountants and solicitors. He is familiar with the particular issues arising out of multi-party disputes in this context.
- Instructed as junior counsel in a university’s claim against an architect, for negligent design and contract administration in the construction of microbiological laboratories.
- Advised, and defended, an architect against allegations of negligent over-certification and alleged advice in connection with the conversion of a hotel into residential units.
- Acting as sole counsel for an employer in a claim against a mechanical engineering consultant for negligent design of variable refrigerant flow air conditioning systems.
- Acting as junior counsel for a process designer defending a contractor’s claim for alleged defective design of the mechanical pre-treatment section of a waste processing and anaerobic digestion plant in England.
- Acted as junior counsel for a design and build contractor in a multi-party dispute concerning the design of air conditioning systems in a further education college.
- Defending, in a multi-party dispute, a project quantity surveyor against allegations of negligently prepared tender documentation and cost estimates.
- Defending a right of light surveyor against allegations of negligent advice on the contents of land registry entries.
- Defending a firm of solicitors against allegations of negligence in the conduct of litigation.
- Advising a restaurateur on the potential for a claim against a former accountant for negligent advice on VAT liability.
Omar has been instructed in in a number of disputes arising out of long term PFI contracts, particularly in the context of household waste. He is familiar with the issues that frequently arise, such as disputes concerning the interpretation of payment provisions, and disputes over the achievement of performance criteria and the application of regimes for performance penalties. Examples of previous cases include:
- Junior counsel for 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 in the north of England.
- Junior counsel for a major UK waste management contractor in an adjudication concerning the application of performance points and deductions for alleged performance failures in the operation of an MBT and IVC plants in England.
- Instructed, as junior counsel, to advise a local authority in relation to potential claims arising out of a PFI contractor’s failure to process waste in accordance with the contract.
CONSTRUCTION, ENGINEERING AND INFRASTRUCTURE
Omar has experience of the full spectrum of construction and engineering disputes, ranging from minor residential building works to commercial premises and larger, more complex, infrastructure projects. He is familiar with the major standard forms of construction contract, including the JCT, NEC3 and FIDIC suites, and the various issues that frequently arise on projects, including payment disputes, delay and disruption, and defective design or workmanship.
Omar assists throughout adjudications, drafting submissions and assisting with the preparation of evidence. He is often instructed as sole counsel on payment and notice disputes, as well as final account and defects claims. He acts as part of a larger counsel team in very high value or complex disputes, By way of example, Omar acted for the employer in a high-value final account adjudication concerning the design and construction of airport crew facilities in England.
Omar also has experience of High Court proceedings related to adjudication, including the summary judgment and Part 8 procedures:
- 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 because more than one dispute had been referred. (TCC, London).
- Instructed as sole counsel seeking summary enforcement of an adjudicator’s decision, which was resisted on the basis of allegations that claims had been fraudulently submitted. (TCC, Birmingham).
- Instructed as sole counsel seeking summary judgment on an adjudicator’s decision, which was resisted on grounds that there was no express right to adjudication under the contract. (TCC, London).
A significant proportion of Omar’s practice concerns arbitration, both domestic and international. Examples of his work in this area are:
- Appeared as junior counsel on behalf of the employer in an UNCITRAL arbitration concerning the termination of a contract for the design and construction of a process plant. (Dubai seat, Eritrean law).
- Instructed as junior counsel for a local authority defending a substantial final account claim under a contract for the renovation of a public park. (English seat, English law).
- Instructed as junior counsel for a contractor claiming an extension of time and time-related costs in relation to the construction of a luxury office and residential tower in Dubai. (Dubai seat, UAE law).
- Instructed as junior counsel in a sub-contractor’s claim for payment under a contract for the construction of a cruise terminal in Hong Kong (Hong Kong seat and law).
Omar has advised and acted at all stages of the litigation process. Examples of his construction litigation work include:
- Instructed as junior counsel on behalf of a Dutch property developer defending a final account claim in respect of a contract for demolition works carried out as part of a luxury hotel project in central London.
- Instructed as junior counsel in a claim for sums due under a contract for the renovation of a high-end residential property in London, met with counterclaims for alleged defective work.
Before joining Atkin Chambers, Omar undertook pupillage at another leading commercial set, where he gained experience of a wide range of commercial practice areas, including banking and finance disputes, professional negligence claims, and cases raising choice of law or jurisdictional issues. Omar continues to take instructions in commercial disputes more generally.
Omar takes instructions as an adjudicator in construction disputes. He is a TECBAR accredited adjudicator and CEDR Construction Adjudication Panel Member.
He is a member of TECBAR, COMBAR and the SCL.
Omar frequently delivers talks and seminars on topics of current interest or significance. Topics have included: negligent cost estimates, latent defects, termination under FIDIC contracts, time at large, and causation in delay claims.