Company and Insolvency
Commercial and Chancery
BA Hons (First Class) in Modern History, Oxford University (University college)
Graduate Diploma in Law (Commendation), City University
Chancery Bar Association
Property Bar Association
Personal Insolvency Legal Advice and Representation Scheme
Ranked as a leading insolvency junior in the Legal 500 (2010, 2011 and 2012)
Tony Beswetherick, who "never misses a point or potential argument"
(Legal 500 2011)
Tony practices in all areas of commercial chancery litigation, with a particular emphasis on insolvency, company and property-related litigation. He has been ranked in the Legal 500 as an insolvency junior who 'never misses a point or potential argument' (2011) and who ‘appearsto have the ear of the Bankruptcy and Companies Court registrars’ (2010). Recent cases include a claim in the Commercial Court for rectification of two bank guarantees (guaranteeing £40 million each), a claim for fraudulent trading brought in the Chancery Division arising out of alleged VAT 'carousel' fraud, and a substantial claim in professional negligence against a firm of solicitors arising out of advice given to a company which subsequently entered liquidation due to the misfeasance of a director.
Tony appears regularly before judges, masters and registrars in the High Court as well as in county courts (before both circuit and district judges) as well as in the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal. Tony has also appeared in arbitrations (including a recent arbitration conducted under Russian law) and has wide experience of representing clients at mediations.
Prior to joining Chambers in 2006, Tony worked as an employed barrister in the Advocacy Group of Denton Wilde Sapte, a major international law firm. As a result he is experienced in working individually as well as in a team, and is also particularly alive to the needs of clients and solicitors alike.
Tony was called to the Bar after receiving a major CPE scholarship and as both a Sunley and Hardwicke scholar of Lincoln's Inn.
PRACTICE AREA: COMPANY AND INSOLVENCY
Tony has an extensive insolvency practice, advising upon all aspects of both corporate and individual insolvency. Tony regularly acts both for and against office-holders in relation to claw-back claims and in proceedings against directors. He has substantial experience of the types of applications and hearings that are frequently encountered in the context of the different insolvency processes (including disputed winding up and bankruptcy petitions and applications to set aside statutory demands, applications for administration orders and extensions of administrations, for the fixing of office-holders’ remuneration, for permission to make a distribution, block transfer applications, rescission and annulment applications and appeals against decisions upon proofs of debt).
Tony’s company law practice includes advising upon directors’ duties and in relation to shareholder disputes. He regularly appears upon applications to restore companies to the register and in applications arising out of the registration of corporate charges.
Current and recent work:
Acting for the joint administrators of a group of companies seeking the sanction of the court for the pooling of corporate assets and liabilities
Acting for a respondent to a £3m fraudulent trading claim arising out of alleged VAT carousel fraud
Advising the administrators of a group of companies in relation to netting issues and insolvency set-off in the context of substantial inter-group claims totaling in excess of £13m
Acting for a creditor in relation to a dispute over whether its right to the proceeds of an insurance policy constituted a floating charge
Acting for a shareholder of a property development company in relation to a petition for unfair prejudice
Acting for a shareholder in a claim for an order for delivery up of share certificates
Acting for joint administrators in opposition to an application by a landlord for permission to forfeit a lease and for directions as to the treatment of rent as an expense of the administration
Representing a former director at the mediation of a liquidator’s claim alleging that the director was the recipient of a preference and had breached his fiduciary duties owed to the company
Acting for a sub-tenant in relation to an application for a vesting order following a liquidator’s disclaimer of the head lease
Advising a shareholder in a claim to recover unpaid dividends
Other notable and reported cases
Re Michael (a bankrupt); Hellard v Michael and Fairview New Homes Farnborough Ltd  BPIR 418. Trustee in bankruptcy’s application for directions regarding the decision to assign a claim to one of two competing parties.
Re Peppard (a bankrupt); Tomlinson v Harrington and Nash  BPIR 331. Trial of a trustee in bankruptcy’s application to challenge transactions which depleted the bankrupt’s assets on the basis that they constituted preferences and transactions at an undervalue.
Revenue & Customs Commissioners v Crossman  EWHC 1585 (Ch). Represented HMRC at the trial of a disputed bankruptcy petition against a debtor arising out of liability for VAT and excise duty which had been fraudulently avoided.
Papers and publications
Tony regularly speaks at seminars on issues relating to insolvency. He is presently co-writing a chapter in relation to schemes of arrangement for Gore-Browne on Companies and is engaged in co-writing a
work on Corporate Restructuring (due for publication in 2012).
PRACTICE AREA:COMMERCIAL AND CHANCERY
Tony’s practice embraces all aspects of commercial litigation, including contractual disputes, sale of goods and consumer credit claims, disputes in relation to guarantees and litigation arising out of partnerships. Tony’s chancery practice includes disputes over wills and inheritance act claims.
Current and recent work:
Acting for two banks in relation to a claim for rectification of two bank guarantees (of £45 million each) in the Commercial Court
Acting for the supplier in a Commercial Court claim arising out of the failure to supply of cement in reliance upon force majeure
Acting for the defendant to a claim alleging that he was the knowing recipient of trust property or was liable for dishonest assistance in breach of trust
Acting for a trustee in bankruptcy at the trial in the Chancery Division of his application for the realization of property alleged to be a partnership asset
Acting for the claimant in a substantial claim in the Queen’s Bench division for damages for professional negligence against a firm of solicitors
Acting for the executors of will in opposition to an application for financial provision under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependents) Act 1975
Advising the beneficiaries of trusts created under two wills in relation to the conduct and replacement of the trustees and executors
Acting for a beneficiary of a will in a claim in the Chancery Division brought by the executors seeking a declaration as to whether property transferred to the beneficiary was part of the deceased’s estate
Other notable and reported cases:
Oliver Morley v Reiter Engineering GmbH & Co.KG  EWHC 2798 (Ch). Successful challenge to the jurisdiction of the English court to try a claim relating to the supply of an allegedly defective motor-racing car.
Represented the Serious Fraud Office in an application in the High Court to vary a search order in order to obtain disclosure of documents relevant to an ongoing investigation into overseas corruption
Junior Counsel to the members of the Queen’s Club in their dispute with the Lawn Tennis Association regarding the latter’s title to sell the club’s assets
Papers and publications
Tony contributed to Sweet and Maxwell Anti Money Laundering Guide (2006). He regularly delivers seminars in relation to consumer credit issues.
PRACTICE AREA: PROPERTY
Tony’s has a busy property practice and has extensive experience of disputes arising out of mortgages (including claims involving receivers), the creation, transfer and protection of property rights, real property disputes and all aspects of commercial and residential landlord and tenant law.
Current and recent work:
Junior counsel in a substantial dilapidations claim relating to commercial premises
Representing the vendor of a plot of land by auction at the trial of a claim for rectification of the auction agreement and conveyancing documents
Acting for the claimants in a claim to determine the beneficial ownership of an investment property on the basis of a common intention constructive trust
Acting for a tenant in a claim for a new business lease under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954
Ongoing advice in relation to a dispute over service charges claimed under various leases of commercial premises
Acting for the administrators of an Icelandic bank at the 2-day appeal of an order for possession of mortgaged residential property
Representing a sub-tenant in an application for a vesting order following a disclaimer of the head lease by a liquidator
Representing a mortgage company and LPA receivers at the trial of a claim for the shortfall following the sale of the mortgaged property
Ongoing instructions in relation to a personal representative’s claim to set aside a mortgage over property obtained by fraud
Appearing for a landlord in a claim in the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal for a determination that there had been a breach of lease
Advising the defendant in an action arising out of a dispute as to the location of a boundary between two parcels of farmland
Advising the claimant in a claim to restrain trespass over a disputed right of way
Papers and publications
Tony is a contributor to the Estates Gazette.