Australia - Construction & Infrastructure: The Bar (The Bar) Lawyers & Law Firms - Asia-Pacific - Chambers and Partners
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Asia Guide

Construction & Infrastructure: The Bar (The Bar) — Australia

Band 1

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Greenway Chambers is home to some 31 barristers with nine silks and several mediators and arbitrators. The set has a strong focus on construction matters in addition to its broader commercial offering, and includes expertise in areas such as land and environment law and personal injuries. Tobias O’Hehir is the senior clerk/practice manager.

Francis Hicks SC takes on construction disputes ranging from substantial residential and commercial developments to larger-scale infrastructure projects. He also appears in domestic and international arbitrations. In addition to acting for major developers and mining concerns, he also advises on the Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act. Interviewees point to his "clear analytical approach to construction issues" and his "good rapport with the court and very strong construction pedigree."

Franco Corsaro SC continues to attract high praise for his construction and engineering practice. He has appeared in cases for a range of construction companies and well-known developers at first instance and on appeal, dealing with issues such as undertakings as security for performance, and actions against builders or subcontractors in respect of defective work.

Julie Wright continues to win plaudits for her abilities as a litigator in general and her construction practice in particular. Sources report that she is "briefed a lot in Sydney and has a good reputation in the market" and that "she understands client needs and is incredibly clever and so easy to work with." Her work of late includes acting for an Australian company and a French utility provider in connection with a gas project, and she has also represented a contractor in a dispute concerning the design and construction of a coal terminal. She also assists clients in arbitrations.

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Band 1

Level Twenty Seven Chambers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

This Brisbane-based set has an outstanding reputation for the range of expertise it provides in relation to construction and infrastructure disputes in addition to its well-established general commercial work. As well as acting for major construction and developer clients on commercial and residential building contracts, its members are instructed on disputes relating to hefty transport and onshore and offshore projects in the areas of LNG and other resources-related projects. Alternative dispute resolution skills are also on offer including domestic and international arbitrations. Daniel Perry is the manager of the set.

John Baartz is highlighted by a sources as a "bright, personable lawyer with a strong construction skill set and good client relationship skills." Another interviewee values that "he is very hard-working, is good on analysing issues, and thinks very tactically and strategically." He offers some 25 years of experience in dealing with complex construction and insurance matters in addition to his general commercial practice and also handles arbitrations and other types of ADR. His work includes acting for John Holland regarding a claim relating to the provision of ballast undercutting services to Aurizon.

Shane Doyle QC is considered to be one of the most talented barristers in the country and is prized not only for his commercial practice but also specifically in the fields of construction, infrastructure and restructuring and insolvency. As sources point out, "he is very highly regarded here in the construction space" and "he is one of the best advocates in the Australian market and has superior academic skills." His practice encompasses advisory, trial and appellate work as well as arbitrations, and his busy practice includes advising clients on LNG-related arbitrations and disputes associated with large infrastructure projects.

Michael Trim has excellent credentials in the construction sphere, and is briefed on substantial construction and infrastructure disputes and arbitrations. A source explains the many reasons why he is a popular choice of counsel: "He has a very good rapport with the Bench, he is respectful and courteous, he has a very good technical grounding in construction law and civil procedure, and he is very good at nurturing the junior lawyers who work with him." His work of late includes acting for Laing O’Rourke in an action to recover monies after an adjudication for alleged delays in connection with an LNG construction.

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Band 1

7 Wentworth Selborne

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

This well-regarded Sydney set delivers advice and advocacy across the gamut of commercial and public law but is especially in demand for its outstanding talent in the construction and infrastructure arenas. It is home to some 17 senior and more than 30 junior counsel who appear in appellate, arbitration and statutory tribunal forums. Simon Walker is the managing clerk.

Mark Dempsey SC continues to attract appreciation for his deft handling of construction and engineering disputes including arbitrations. A source reports that he is "a thorough and tenacious senior counsel with an ability to master difficult forensic issues and large amounts of material." A well-liked and respected silk, he also draws such praise as: "Mark is widely regarded as being the leading construction barrister in Australia. He is a gentleman, is easy to work with and provides excellent value." He also practises as an arbitrator and mediator in Australia and elsewhere in Asia.

George Inatey SC is a hugely experienced and "excellent" practitioner who has acted for many of the major domestic and global construction companies in an array of disputes. He has also acted as an arbitrator or mediator on construction and engineering disputes in relation to building developments and energy infrastructure projects.

Duncan Miller SC is "one of three specialist construction barristers recommended for international arbitration," according to a source. Another refers to his "long-standing experience in construction and infrastructure" and his "rigorous approach." With some 25 years of experience in the construction, infrastructure and insurance fields, he brings a wealth of expertise to complex construction projects.

Nuala Simpson is considered a "terrific" practitioner who is highly rated for having "a good rapport with Sydney firms." She is in particularly high demand for her skills in relation to engineering and construction disputes in addition to her general commercial practice. She appears in a range of courts including the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of New South Wales and the Federal Court acting for clients such as Adani Abbot Point Terminal and for Transport for NSW on the Sydney light rail project.

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Band 1

7 Wentworth Selborne

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Mark Dempsey SC continues to attract appreciation for his deft handling of construction and engineering disputes including arbitrations. A source reports that he is "a thorough and tenacious senior counsel with an ability to master difficult forensic issues and large amounts of material." A well-liked and respected silk, he also draws such praise as: "Mark is widely regarded as being the leading construction barrister in Australia. He is a gentleman, is easy to work with and provides excellent value." He also practises as an arbitrator and mediator in Australia and elsewhere in Asia.

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Band 1

Level Twenty Seven Chambers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Shane Doyle QC is considered to be one of the most talented barristers in the country and is prized not only for his commercial practice but also specifically in the fields of construction, infrastructure and restructuring and insolvency. As sources point out, "he is very highly regarded here in the construction space" and "he is one of the best advocates in the Australian market and has superior academic skills." His practice encompasses advisory, trial and appellate work as well as arbitrations, and his busy practice includes advising clients on LNG-related arbitrations and disputes associated with large infrastructure projects.

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Band 1

Jeffrey J Gleeson QC

List A

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Jeffrey Gleeson QC of List A (Isaacs Chambers) continues to be recommended for his building and engineering practice including arbitrations and mediations, in addition to his commercial practice which covers areas such as insurance.

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Band 1

Greenway Chambers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Francis Hicks SC takes on construction disputes ranging from substantial residential and commercial developments to larger-scale infrastructure projects. He also appears in domestic and international arbitrations. In addition to acting for major developers and mining concerns, he also advises on the Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act. Interviewees point to his "clear analytical approach to construction issues" and his "good rapport with the court and very strong construction pedigree."

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Band 1

7 Wentworth Selborne

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

George Inatey SC is a hugely experienced and "excellent" practitioner who has acted for many of the major domestic and global construction companies in an array of disputes. He has also acted as an arbitrator or mediator on construction and engineering disputes in relation to building developments and energy infrastructure projects.

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Band 1

7 Wentworth Selborne

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Duncan Miller SC is "one of three specialist construction barristers recommended for international arbitration," according to a source. Another refers to his "long-standing experience in construction and infrastructure" and his "rigorous approach." With some 25 years of experience in the construction, infrastructure and insurance fields, he brings a wealth of expertise to complex construction projects.

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Band 2

Gareth Beacham QC

Callinan Chambers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Gareth Beacham QC of Callinan Chambers is characterised by a source as "an up-and-coming QC" who is "very practical and extremely good with clients." He is briefed on substantial construction and engineering cases, in addition to handling a range of general commercial and real estate matters.

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Band 2

Michael Christie SC

Sixth Floor Selborne Wentworth Chambers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Michael Christie SC of Sixth Floor Selborne Wentworth Chambers is highlighted for his long-standing specialism in construction. Interviewees report that he has acted for major Australian and overseas corporates in a variety of matters, and that "he has an extensive practice in complex contractual disputes in the construction industry."

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Band 2

Franco Corsaro SC

Greenway Chambers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Franco Corsaro SC continues to attract high praise for his construction and engineering practice. He has appeared in cases for a range of construction companies and well-known developers at first instance and on appeal, dealing with issues such as undertakings as security for performance, and actions against builders or subcontractors in respect of defective work.

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Band 2

Nicholas Hopkins QC

List A Barristers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Nicholas Hopkins QC of  List A (Owen Dixon Chambers West) acts on substantial court actions and international arbitrations in the construction and infrastructure arenas. He has represented a number of global construction corporates as well as local authorities and energy and resources companies.

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Band 2

Nicholas Nicholls SC

13th Floor St James' Hall

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Nicholas Nicholls SC of 13th Floor St James' Hall continues to attract praise for his construction skills including for his handling of ADR. He maintains a general commercial as well as construction practice, acting on matters in the High Court, Court of Appeal and Federal Court.

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Band 2

Patrick O'Shea QC

North Quarter Lane Chambers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Patrick O'Shea QC of North Quarter Lane Chambers in Brisbane has a wealth of experience in conducting cases in state and federal courts, in addition to acting in arbitrations and appeals on arbitral awards. His practice spans insurance and property matters as well as construction.

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Band 2

Thomas Sullivan QC

Level 14 Quay Central Chambers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Thomas Sullivan QC of Level 14 Quay Central Chambers is highlighted by interviewees for his arbitration work and for being instructed on high-profile disputes. One commentator reports that he has "a very good practice and is a well-respected silk" who combines a focus on both insolvency and construction matters.

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Band 1

Level Twenty Seven Chambers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

John Baartz is highlighted by a sources as a "bright, personable lawyer with a strong construction skill set and good client relationship skills." Another interviewee values that "he is very hard-working, is good on analysing issues, and thinks very tactically and strategically." He offers some 25 years of experience in dealing with complex construction and insurance matters in addition to his general commercial practice and also handles arbitrations and other types of ADR. His work includes acting for John Holland regarding a claim relating to the provision of ballast undercutting services to Aurizon.

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Band 1

Banco Chambers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Tim Breakspear of Banco Chambers continues to attract glowing praise from market sources, one of whom comments: "He is the best junior barrister in construction. He is an intelligent lawyer, is excellent on his feet, and has a great rapport with the Bench." He is in high demand on many of the most significant infrastructure cases and is also developing an arbitration practice. Of late he been instructed on a Singapore arbitration in an energy-related matter and acted on a AUD30 million claim in the Supreme Court of New South Wales in relation to the development and production of a copper mine owned by a subsidiary of Vedanta.

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Band 1

Level Twenty Seven Chambers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Michael Trim has excellent credentials in the construction sphere, and is briefed on substantial construction and infrastructure disputes and arbitrations. A source explains the many reasons why he is a popular choice of counsel: "He has a very good rapport with the Bench, he is respectful and courteous, he has a very good technical grounding in construction law and civil procedure, and he is very good at nurturing the junior lawyers who work with him." His work of late includes acting for Laing O’Rourke in an action to recover monies after an adjudication for alleged delays in connection with an LNG construction.

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Band 2

Level 16 & 17 Quay Central

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Scott Hooper of Level 16 & 17 Quay Central is considered to be "an excellent junior who is good on his feet and one to watch." He combines a broad commercial litigation practice with construction disputes and arbitrations.

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Band 2

7 Wentworth Selborne

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Nuala Simpson is considered a "terrific" practitioner who is highly rated for having "a good rapport with Sydney firms." She is in particularly high demand for her skills in relation to engineering and construction disputes in addition to her general commercial practice. She appears in a range of courts including the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of New South Wales and the Federal Court acting for clients such as Adani Abbot Point Terminal and for Transport for NSW on the Sydney light rail project.

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Band 2

Greenway Chambers

From the Chambers Asia-Pacific guide

Julie Wright continues to win plaudits for her abilities as a litigator in general and her construction practice in particular. Sources report that she is "briefed a lot in Sydney and has a good reputation in the market" and that "she understands client needs and is incredibly clever and so easy to work with." Her work of late includes acting for an Australian company and a French utility provider in connection with a gas project, and she has also represented a contractor in a dispute concerning the design and construction of a coal terminal. She also assists clients in arbitrations.

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