Harneys promotes three litigation and restructuring senior associates

Harneys is pleased to announce the promotions of three members of its litigation and restructuring department in Hong Kong – Fleur O’Driscoll, Michael Snape and David Smith – to senior associate level, effective Wednesday 6 December 2017.

The promotions mean almost half of Harneys’ Hong Kong litigation and restructuring team is now comprised of senior lawyers. With 23 lawyers and continuing to grow, the team is by far the largest offshore litigation team in Asia, and is unmatched in terms of depth and breadth of experience as well as diversity of work.

Ian Mann, Head of Harneys’ Litigation and Restructuring practice in Asia, commented: “At Harneys we recognise and reward hard work, and each of these individuals has consistently demonstrated outstanding legal capabilities in conjunction with an unwavering commitment to exceeding clients’ expectations. Their promotions come at an exciting time when our team is expanding its reach into mainland China, and I wholeheartedly congratulate them on this well-deserved progression of their respective careers.”

The three senior associates in question have 38 years PQE between them, including extensive offshore experience gained in both the BVI and the Cayman Islands. Fleur O’Driscoll specialises in insolvency and restructuring and has worked on a wide range of matters in the Cayman Islands and the BVI on behalf of liquidators, creditors and other stakeholders. She also has significant offshore litigation experience in a broad range of cross-border commercial disputes, including shareholder disputes, contractual disputes and fraud claims.

Michael Snape is a barrister by training and has regularly appeared as an advocate in the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands and the Cayman Islands Court of Appeal. His practice focuses on high value contentious insolvency, general commercial litigation and shareholder disputes, often with a multi-jurisdictional element.

David Smith specialises in insolvency and restructuring as well as high value contract and trust disputes, usually with a cross-border element. He advises clients from a range of industry sectors, including international trade and financial services. Prior to joining Harneys in 2017, David worked at leading commercial law firms in London and Sydney.

Their promotions come just days after the firm’s announcement that London litigation partner Vicky Lord will relocate to Shanghai in the new year to head up Harneys’ litigation and restructuring team there, following the office’s procurement of a licence to offer international legal services from China’s Ministry of Justice earlier this year. Vicky will be supported by a team of eight offshore litigation and restructuring lawyers, to be hired in 2018.

The planned expansion will significantly bolster Harneys’ market-leading litigation and restructuring practice in Hong Kong, which is recognised as the lodestar of the offshore litigation and restructuring landscape in Asia. The team’s unique business model involves housing several advocates of the Cayman Islands, BVI and Bermuda courts in Hong Kong, who fly regularly to those jurisdictions to represent Asian clients in Court. It is also the only offshore litigation team to have a dedicated restructuring department within it, which is regularly lauded for its advanced restructuring expertise and has won numerous high-profile awards.