Practice

Lara has a busy commercial chancery practice spanning the full range of Chambers’ work. She appears frequently in the High Court, in both the Insolvency and Business List, led and unled, and has experience of trials in both the High Court and County Court. Most notably she appeared as junior to Richard Hill QC in Sharp and Ors v Blank and Ors, a twelve-week trial in the Chancery Division concerning Lloyds’ takeover of HBOS in 2008.

Lara has particular experience in shareholder disputes, directors’ duties and cases concerning issues of company insolvency. She also has a strong background in cases involving the energy sector. She has experience of dealing with disputes in other jurisdictions, and is a registered Part II practitioner in the DIFC.

Her priority is to give practical advice tailored to suit the client’s particular needs.

Prior to joining Chambers, Lara read History at the University of Cambridge before going on to gain a Distinction in the Graduate Diploma in Law at City University.

Practice areas

Commercial dispute resolution

Lara has experience in a wide range of commercial litigation matters, both in the Commercial Court and the Chancery Division, and her work frequently features contractual disputes. Examples of her work include drafting a statement of case in respect of an agreement deferred consideration in a sale and purchase agreement and appearing in a County Court trial concerning breach of contract for coach hire. She is presently instructed on a c. £4 million claim in the DIFC concerning a breach of contract, fraudulent misrepresentation and conspiracy in the context of a securities trade.

Company law

Lara is interested in all areas of company law. She has a particularly strong background in dealing with shareholder disputes, having appeared in the Lloyds/HBOS Litigation for the Claimant shareholders and having drafted and advised on a number of s. 994 petitions both in and out of the jurisdiction. She was also recently involved in proceedings concerning a derivative claim in the High Court for the repayment of expenses by shareholders. She has advised companies and liquidators in relation to breaches of directors’ duties.

Insolvency & restructuring

Lara has a strong interest in insolvency work and was a contributor to Lexis Nexis’s Insolvency Rules 2016 forms, replacing the prescribed forms under the 1986 rules.

She regularly deals with proceedings under the Insolvency Act 1986, in the context of both company and personal insolvency. Most notably she appeared alongside Nicholas Cox on behalf of OFGEM in Gas and Electricity Markets Authority v GB Energy Supply Ltd [2016] EWHC 3341 (Ch), a successful out of hours application for a declaration of insolvency in relation to an energy supply company. Lara has since appeared in a number of similar cases on behalf of OFGEM.

Other experience includes proceedings to set aside statutory demands, applications for permission to commence and continue proceedings in the context of an interim moratorium imposed under the Insolvency Act, proceedings challenging an administrator’s conduct under Schedule B1 of the Insolvency Act, advising liquidators on director misfeasance and bankruptcy petitions raising issues of whether the debtor’s Centre of Main Interests is England and Wales.

Financial services

Lara has strong financial regulation experience, having undertaken a secondment to the Financial Conduct Authority in the context of regulating peer-to-peer lending firms. Her experience of financial regulation work also includes advising in relation to the scope of activities caught by the Regulated Activities Order, the need for authorisation by individual members of a company and possible claims relating to breaches of the FCA Handbook.

Offshore litigation

Lara has experience of claims in a range of jurisdictions. Particular experience includes advising on and drafting a claim for unfair prejudice in Singapore, and being instructed on a c. £4 million claim for breach of contract, deceit and unlawful means conspiracy in relation to a securities trade in the DIFC, which is due to come on for trial in 2019.

Additional info

Education and awards

Education

BA (Hons) Historical Tripos – Girton College, University of Cambridge
Graduate Diploma in Law (Distinction) – City Law School
Bar Professional Training Course (Outstanding in Civil Litigation and Cross Examination) – City Law School

Scholarships and Prize
2013-2014 Astbury Scholarship – Middle Temple
2nd prize in the 2012 Times Law Awards
3rd prize in the 2013 Times Law Awards

 

Career & appointments

Member of the Chancery Bar Association and COMBAR

Publications

‘Commercial Law and Financial Regulation’, United Kingdom Supreme Court Yearbook vol. 7 (2016) (co-authored with Jonathan Crow QC and Emma Horner)
“Investigations by BIS”, Tolley’s Company Law Service (Co-contributor with Donald Lilly)
Contributor to Lexis Nexis Insolvency Rules 2016 forms