700 professionals at Knights service 10,000 clients across the full spectrum of legal & professional services.
David is a Partner in the Dispute Resolution team.
David specialises in resolving contractual disputes, particularly complex multi-party actions. His cases include trading disputes such as breach of contract about payment, delivery, quality, agent compensation, misrepresentation, termination, real estate problems including service charge, rent review, break notices, restrictive covenants, trespass and rights of way issues, construction disputes, infringement of intellectual property rights and defamation.
David also has experience of fraud, professional negligence, insolvency, and disputes between partners, directors and shareholders. David's clients range from small professional practices and service companies, through to real estate developers, leading retail and leisure brands employing up to 3,500 people.
Recent examples of how David has helped clients include:
• putting a stop to a company which had been passing itself off as a subsidiary of a leading telecoms brand, obtaining compensation for loss of revenue and damage to the reputation of the brand owner;
• winning on behalf of 13 national businesses who were facing claims in excess of £1.7 million in the High Court;
• saving over £4.2 million for a group of commercial tenants, whose landlord pursued a rent review claim to the High Court; and
• defending the reputation of an international company against a product liability claim over three years, with the final judgment in our favour including full recovery of legal costs.
Mark is a Partner in the Dispute Resolution and Restructuring and Insolvency teams.
Mark advises on a broad range of disputes, including professional negligence, breach of contract claims, shareholder and director disputes, default loan matters, claims of financial wrongdoing and the fraudulent use of trusts and other devices to shield wealth. He also advises on corporate and personal insolvency issues, including the instigation and defence of insolvency proceedings, the prosecution and defence of director disqualification claims and the investigation, prosecution and defence of deprivation of assets allegations against corporate owners.
Mark acts for high-net-worth individuals, owner-managers, corporations, accountants, insolvency practitioners and bridging finance houses. He works across a range of sectors, including leisure, professional services and finance.
Recent examples of how Mark has helped clients include:
• recovering substantial damages for the lender of a hotel and apartment block in a claim for professional negligence where it was alleged damages should be capped at £2 million;
• setting aside a financial settlement agreed between a banking client and a customer, which the bank had been induced to enter on the basis of inaccurate and dishonestly provided information;
• successfully overturning a family trust settlement which had been fraudulently created to deprive our client of their rightful inheritance; and
• securing the withdrawal of a bankruptcy petition maliciously issued against a client by their bank.
David is a Partner in the Restructuring and Insolvency team.
David provides advice on personal and corporate insolvency and on the rescue and recovery of businesses in financial distress.
David acts for insolvency practitioners, business owners and directors, private individuals, secured and unsecured lenders and financial institutions.
David provides advice on contentious issues that arise in the context of corporate restructures, company voluntary arrangements, administrations and liquidations and asset realisation. This includes advice on disputed debts and creditor claims, the investigation of preferential or pre-insolvency transactions at an undervalue, allegations of wrongful trading or misfeasance by former directors, directors’ disqualification proceedings and the recovery of company property from the UK and Europe.
David also specializes in contentious issues in connection with bankruptcy and individual voluntary arrangements. This includes advice on beneficial interest claims, admitted debts and liabilities, asset realisation and asset location and recovery.
David is a member of the Solicitors’ Assistance Scheme whereby he provides free advice and guidance to other legal professionals on insolvency matters.
Before becoming a lawyer, David was a recoveries specialist for a high street bank and now acts as a trusted adviser for a number of mainstream commercial and asset-based lenders.
Recent examples of how David has helped clients include:
- settling a beneficial interest claim on commercially acceptable terms for a trustee in bankruptcy whose entitlement to monies raised from the sale of the bankrupt’s home was challenged under an equitable exoneration claim;
- negotiating the settlement of disqualification proceedings on behalf of four directors on terms which enabled them to continue trading subject to restrictions contained in an agreed undertaking; and
- recovering significant assets from a former company director on behalf of an administrator where there was evidence of misfeasance and wrongful trading.
- advising the managing partner of a multi-office law firm through a successful re-structure and partnership voluntary arrangement.
Will is a Partner in the Restructuring and Insolvency team.
Will provides legal support to distressed companies and Insolvency Practitioners, whether they are looking to restructure or turnaround an existing business or are required to go through an Insolvency process. He has considerable experience of the various insolvency processes and procedures available to companies in distressed circumstances.
Will is well versed in the potential pitfalls facing directors or individuals trading in difficult periods and often advises directors in respect of their duties and with regards to strategies to minimise the risk of personal liability and allegations of misfeasance.
Will also acts for lenders whose investment is at risk if a business fails by assisting them to consider the various options available to them and the impact of any particular option.
Will acts for companies and individuals who want to purchase assets or business interests from an insolvent company, and he advises landlords who want to mitigate their exposure following a tenant’s collapse.
Will is best known for providing specialist legal support to insolvency practitioners. In particular providing advice as to the handling and implementing of corporate insolvency processes as well as providing advice in respect of complex bankruptcies.
Recent examples of how Will has helped his clients include:
- supporting the administrators and secured lender of a well-known restaurant and hospitality group in the managed closure of underperforming outlets followed by the sale of the flagship restaurant to achieve the best outcome for the stakeholders;
- legal support to a Venture Capitalist in the acquisition of the business and assets of a forensic science company from its administrators, including dealing with the Home Office to ensure a seamless transition of the existing contracts. The delivery of the transaction saved hundreds of jobs;
- assisting the Administrators to manage a competitive marketing process before negotiating and completing the sale of the business and assets of a media company in administration for £17M; and
- advising the board of a plc in respect of their fiduciary duties as the group of circa 80 trading companies was restructured by their secured creditors
Monica is a Partner in the Restructuring and Insolvency team.
Monica is a personal and corporate insolvency specialist providing advice on a range of contentious and non-contentious matters. Her experience includes the issuing and defending of statutory demands, bankruptcy petitions and winding-up applications, the investigation, prosecution and defence of preference claims and breach of directors' duties charges, the bringing and defending of proceedings based on alleged transactions at an undervalue, the bringing and defending of claims for the possession and sale of property.
Monica investigates beneficial interest claims based in equity, obtains income payment orders and directions permitting the recovery of book debts, and issues or defends UK-based or Europe-wide freezing orders.
Monica represents private individuals, company directors, insolvency practitioners and financial institutions.
Recent examples of Monica's recent cases include:
• successfully applying to vary a Europe-wide freezing order over the assets of a UK-based individual which resulted in the release of more than £3 million to their trustee in bankruptcy;
• settling a breach of directors' duty claim for £1,000 on behalf of a former director, after the claim had been valued by liquidators at more than £140,000;
• recovering in excess of £500,000 from the wife and extended family of a bankrupt individual who, through a series of transactions, had attempted to divest himself of the ownership of any assets; and
• locating and realising significant assets on behalf of a trustee in bankruptcy in a case where money was deposited in numerous bank accounts across Switzerland and France.
Mark is a Partner in Restructuring and Insolvency team.
Mark provides strategic advice to the owners of businesses in financial difficulty. This includes advice on restructuring, negotiating arrangements with creditors, advising on company voluntary arrangements, the disposal or acquisition of business assets through administration and on all aspects company liquidations. Specific advice is provided to company directors on the risk of personal culpability where an insolvent company continues to trade or enters transactions that may be susceptible to challenge. Mark also represents directors defending claims arising from insolvency processes including director disqualification proceedings.
Mark supports insolvency practitioners who have been appointed as administrators or liquidators in the realisation of assets or the sale of a business as a going concern. He also helps to investigate and prosecute claims for wrongful trading, breach of duty, misfeasance, preferences and transactions at an undervalue.
Mark is a fellow of the Association of Business Recovery Professionals and an affiliate member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, England and Wales. He has clients including insolvency practitioners, funders, creditors, the owners of SMEs and company directors.
Recent examples of how Mark has helped clients include:
- supporting the administrator of a loss-making pet supply business in the sale of 18 stores as a going concern with the managed closure of 7 stores to secure a good recovery for creditors and which minimised job losses;
- arranging the pre-pack sale, on behalf of the funder, of a hotel business which stood to make substantial losses if the hotel was forced into liquidation or an unplanned administration;
- devising a strategy which enabled the shareholders of a company to use a members’ voluntary liquidation to reorganise their business and distribute assets to separate companies under a less risky group structure; and
- navigating a company out of administration where the director had secured finance to settle creditor claims allowing control of the company to pass back to the directors and shareholders.
Martin is a Partner in the Restructuring and Insolvency team.
Martin provides insolvency advice to distressed companies, insolvency practitioners, banks and asset-based lenders and purchasers buying businesses and assets out of an insolvency arrangement.
Martin advises on turnaround plans, debt restructuring, business reorganisations, company voluntary arrangements, company administrations, voluntary and compulsory liquidation, property receiverships, pre-pack sales, sales and purchases out of administration or liquidation and the realisation and recovery of company funds.
Martin acts for clients including FRP Advisory, Duff & Phelps, Leonard Curtis and Bibby Financial Services.
Recent examples of how Martin has helped clients include:
- completing the time-pressured sale of a city centre office building on behalf of the administrator of an insolvent property development company in a deal which generated higher than expected sale proceeds;
- facilitating the purchase of the business and assets of an insolvent façade manufacturing company on behalf of a corporate buyer and negotiating the separate acquisition of three properties under a finance agreement with a national lender; and
- supporting the administrator of an insolvent construction group in the sale of several businesses within the group in a deal which kept job losses to a minimum and maximized the return to creditors.
Sebastian LangSenior Associate
Sebastian is a Senior Associate in the Restructuring and Insolvency team.
Sebastian provides wide-ranging advice to companies in financial difficulty, asset-based lenders and invoice finance providers affected by borrower default, insolvency practitioners overseeing an insolvency process and the buyers of businesses and assets out of an insolvency arrangement.
Sebastian advises distressed companies on corporate reorganisation and debt restructuring, company voluntary arrangements, the onward sale of business interests and assets, the appointment of an administrator and the process of putting a company into liquidation. He also advises on directors’ fiduciary duties when running a company on the brink of collapse.
Sebastian’s advice to lenders encompasses the restructuring of borrower debt to improve financial stability, the transfer of debt between companies as part of a wider corporate reorganisation and options for enforcing lender security where failure cannot be avoided.
The support offered to insolvency practitioners includes strategic advice prior to formal appointment, guidance on the legal and technical aspects of the insolvency process, action to recover company debts and help with the onward sale of businesses and assets.
Sebastian’s clients operate in a variety of sectors, including professional and financial services, retail and recruitment.
Recent examples of how Sebastian has helped clients include:
- facilitating the sale of the business and assets of a distressed web-based company in a pre-administration deal likely to clear the company’s debts, cover the costs of insolvency and achieve a return to the company’s shareholders;
- supporting the administrator of a well-known restaurant group in a managed restructure and disposal of business interests, achieving an good return for the secured creditor;
- guiding the board of a logistics company through a restructuring programme designed to comply with ongoing changes to UK taxation rules; and
- recovering £1.5 million for the administrators of a financial services company following the settlement of several directors’ liability claims.
Nikesh PatelSenior Associate
Nikesh is a Senior Associate in the Restructuring and Insolvency team.
He advises on personal and corporate insolvency, disputes arising in the context of individual and company voluntary arrangements, bankruptcies, administrations, and liquidations.
Nikesh is instructed by insolvency practitioners to resolve disputes with creditors, to pursue unpaid debts, to advise in respect of beneficial interest claims in bankruptcy and to recover improperly transferred assets, including those liable to be set aside as being antecedent transactions often involving misfeasant directors. He also advises in respect of assets held abroad.
Nikesh advises individuals on their personal position in an insolvency situation, including bankrupts and also company directors worried about personal liability, breach of statutory duties and the consequences of misfeasance while in office.
Nikesh has negotiated voluntary undertakings in place of directors’ disqualification orders and secured permission for directors to reuse insolvent company names via the prohibited names procedure. He also negotiates undertakings in place of bankruptcy restriction orders.
Nikesh often mentors creditors through the process of trying to maximise returns from insolvent debtors.
Recent examples of how Nikesh has helped clients include:
- recovering a six-figure sum on behalf of administrators following a complex contract dispute between an insolvent company and its former client arising out of a procurement agreement;
- obtaining a worldwide freezing order for a liquidator to compel a misfeasant director to return monies improperly transferred to personal bank accounts shortly before the company’s collapse; and
- advising a trustee in bankruptcy in relation to a bankrupt’s sale of a dentistry practice including a dispute with his ex-wife in respect of Matrimonial Causes Act and ancillary relief proceedings pre-bankruptcy.