Overview: Oliver Assersohn – “a truly excellent barrister” (Legal 500) – specialises in commercial matters and particularly in financial services, including regulation, for which he has been ranked by the foremost independent legal directories for many years.
Commercial/ Chancery litigation: A “financial services and banking specialist who has a wealth of expertise in the area” with “… a broad chancery and commercial practice…He is incredibly diligent and hard-working, and continues to impress with his technical knowledge.” (Chambers & Partners). Also ranked by Legal 500 in financial services and in the separate category of banking and finance. Recent work includes:
- Acting on behalf of purchasers of an IFA business suing the sellers for breach of warranty (ongoing). Successfully argued at a trial of a preliminary issue that various breaches of warranty were wilfully concealed and so the claim could proceed (Liberty Partnership Ltd v Tancred &Anr  EWHC 2707 (Comm);
- Successfully argued on behalf of a liquidator of a money-lending business that the assignment of the loan book should be set aside (Barons Finance Ltd v Barons Bridging Finance 1 Ltd & Ors  EWHC 496 (Ch) (due to be heard by the Court of Appeal 2019);
- Acted for a number of years for the second largest organisation in Ethiopia which successfully defeated a US$30m claim on grounds of forum non conveniens (Court of Appeal judgment, Mengiste v EFFORT & Ors  EWCA Civ 1326).
Financial services regulation: Previous accolades in the directories include: a “highly regarded junior”; “an effective advocate”; and, someone who provides “excellent” written work and “clear and practical advice”.
- Oliver was seconded to the Regulatory Decisions Committee of the FSA (now FCA) therefore providing him with a valuable insight into how contested enforcement actions are approached;
- He has acted in a number of the leading cases including, most recently acting for a brokerage in the first ever case to challenge the FCA’s assessment of penalty following a focused resolution agreement (FCA v Linear Investments, March 2019 (judgment reserved)) and advising in a number of high-profile investigations against both individuals and firms (example matters are set in the “areas of experience” section);
- He is the editor of the Decision Procedure and Penalties Manual Commentary in Butterworths Financial Regulation Service.
Arbitration and international law: Oliver is a member of the Swiss Arbitration Association and Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and his recent work includes:
- Acting on behalf of an African State defending a US$300,000,000 claim for alleged breaches of a bilateral investment treaty concerning a construction project. Case involved cross-examination of a number of witnesses as to fact and liability including in respect of the claimant’s DCF analysis;
- Numerous cases for states in respect of a number of litigation issues including claims involving questions of state immunity (e.g. instructed at first instance and for the first appeal in the leading case of Jana v Libya);
- An alleged breach of a commercial arbitration agreement by solicitors acting for one party reporting the matter to their regulator.
Further information: Please see sections below for examples of Oliver’s work. If any further information is required please do not hesitate to contact one of Oliver’s clerks (firstname.lastname@example.org) or, if an existing client, to telephone Oliver direct in Chambers or on his mobile.