Professor Graham Virgo KC (Hon)

Professor Graham Virgo KC (Hon)

Call: 1989 | Silk: 2017 (Hon)

Graham read Law as an undergraduate at Downing College, Cambridge and the BCL at Christ Church, Oxford. He is Professor of English Private Law at the University of Cambridge. He is also the 19th Master of Downing College, Cambridge and an Academic Bencher of Lincoln’s Inn.

His academic interests include the law of restitution, equity and trusts, contract law and criminal law.

Graham was appointed Queen’s Counsel honoris causa in 2017 for service to legal education and private law. His work has been frequently cited in the English courts, including in the Supreme Court, and has shaped the direction of the law of unjust enrichment, mistake, and other related areas of restitution, as well as the law of trusts and Equity.

Graham has advised members of Chambers on various cases, notably Foskett v McKeown (2000) on tracing and proprietary remedies and Patel v Mirsa (2016) on the defence of illegality.

Other information

  • Publications

    Principal publications

    The Principles of the Law of Restitution (4th ed., 2024)

    Equity and Trusts: Text, Cases and Materials (Davies and Virgo)(3rd ed, 2019)

    The Principles of Equity and Trusts (4th ed, 2020)

    Contributor to Chitty on Contracts (ed. Beale) (34th ed., 2021)(author of the restitution chapter)

    Editor and contributor, What About Law? A Guide to Studying Law at University (ed. Barnard, O’Sullivan and Virgo)(3rd ed., 2021)

    Contributor, Simester and Sullivan’s Criminal Law: Theory and Doctrine (Simester, Sullivan,      Spencer, Stark and Virgo) (8th ed. 2022)

    Editor and contributor, Contractual Duties: Performance, Breach, Termination and Remedies (Andrews, Clarke, Tettenborn and Virgo), (4th ed, 2022)

    Graham’s other recent publications include:

    ‘Whose conscience? Unconscionability in the Common Law of Obligations’ in Divergences in Private Law (ed. Robertson and Tilbury) (2015)

    ‘Justifying Necessity as a Defence in Tort Law’ in Defences in Tort (ed. Dyson, Goudkamp and Wilmot-Smith) (2015)

    ‘The Defence of Illegality in Unjust Enrichment’ in Defences in Unjust Enrichment (ed. Dyson, Goudkamp and Wilmot-Smith)(2016)

    ‘Gain-based remedies’ in Commercial Remedies; Resolving Controversies’ (ed. Virgo and Worthington)

    ‘The Illegality Revolution’ in Revolution or Evolution in Private Law (ed. Robertson, Virgo and Worthington)(2018)

    ‘Illegality and Unjust Enrichment’ in Illegality after Patel v Mirza (ed. Bogg and Greene) (2018)

    ‘A Taxonomy of Defences in Restitution’ in Research Handbook on Restitution and Unjust Enrichment (ed. Bant, Barker, Degeling) (2020)

    ‘Unjust Enrichment’ in Challenging Private Law: Lord Sumption on the Supreme Court (ed. Day and Worthington)(2020)

    ‘Abuse of Trust’ in Modern Studies in the Law of Trusts and Wealth Management: Asian Wealth and the Global Context (ed. Nolan and Wu)(2022)