Edward Cohen


Year of Call 1972



General Profile


Edward has practised since 1973 in the field of general commercial and chancery dispute resolution and advice. He co-founded his previous Chambers, 11 Stone Buildings, in 1975 and was Head of his previous chambers, 11 Stone Buildings from October 2004 till January 2015. He has sat as a Recorder since 2000. Although the vast majority of his work comes from solicitors or foreign lawyers, he does also undertake licensed and public access work.

 

Over the years he has established a formidable reputation and has appeared in many reported decisions ranging from the House of Lords and Privy Council to the Court of Appeal and courts of first instance. Whilst his practice concentrates on the areas of commercial contracts of all kinds, partnerships and LLPs, company and insolvency, professional negligence and civil fraud, within those areas his practice is wide-ranging, which enables him to advise and act with confidence in multidisciplinary cases.

 

His experience and expertise gained over many years of practice means that he is regularly instructed in cases which would otherwise require the services of a QC. Moreover, he is noted for combining an excellent legal brain, good judgement, commerciality and a very approachable manner with an extremely conscientious approach towards research and preparation, persuasively presented paperwork and forceful and astute advocacy. His skills and reputation in all these aspects are reflected by the testimonials of him included in recent years in the legal directories.

 

Those descriptions have included references to his having “one of the most incisive legal brains at the Bar”, being “a tactical and polished advocate”, “having a delightful manner with clients” and being “a delight to work with” and a “star in all areas”, with “the ability to call things correctly” and “written work which is second to none”, bringing “strong commercial understanding to a case” and being “very thorough, bright and quite formidable”.

 

The Directories

 

"He is formidable. He's not a silk, but he's often used as such by solicitors, as he has both assurance and skill, and is very, very conscientious."

(Chambers & Partners 2018)

 

‘An excellent lawyer for an in-depth review.’

(Legal 500 2017)

 

‘Highly recommended for partnership disputes.’

(Legal 500 2017)

 

‘Highly rated for advising on complex commercial contracts.’

(Legal 500 2017)

 

“Offers excellent legal analysis combined with shrewd commercial judgement”

(Chambers & Partners 2017)

 

Edward Cohen is recognised as a Leading Junior in Commercial Litigation, Company and Partnerships, Legal 500 2016.

 

“Absolutely at his best, leading a team in complex litigation”

(Legal 500, 2016)

“A star who consistently performs well and connects with clients”

(Legal 500, 2016)

“Clients are very impressed by him”

(Legal 500, 2016)

 

"His intellect and drafting skills are second to none. He's the finished article."

(Chambers & Partners 2016)

 

A strategist of rare quality; he combines excellent legal knowledge with commercial awareness.”

(Legal 500 2015)

 

Impeccable judgement and his insights often help shape the strategy from the outset.”

(Chambers & Partners 2015)

 

“He has good analytical skills and brings strong commercial understanding to a case.”
(Chambers & Partners 2015)

 

“He is very thorough, bright and quite formidable”
(Chambers & Partners 2015)

 

“An encyclopaedic knowledge of the law and various case issues.”
(Legal 500 2014)

 

“....a star in all areas. He has the ability to call things correctly, his style is understated yet firm and his written work is second to none.”
(Chambers & Partners 2014)

 

 

Commercial Litigation

 

Edward deals with all aspects of commercial law in both court and arbitration proceedings. Much of his work is focused upon contractual disputes but they encompass commercial contracts of many different kinds in all spheres of the business world, often involving international aspects and clients based outside the UK, which may in turn give rise to conflicts of law issues. Over the years his extensive experience has also included contracts in the media, entertainment and sports industries (sometimes involving copyright issues as well) in addition to the supply of goods and services, banking (acting for and against banks), insurance, commercial property and breach of employment and related duties. He has regularly represented clients at mediations with successful results and he has also been specifically asked by solicitors to act as a mediator in particular disputes.

 

Relevant cases include:

 

  • Rosserlane Consultants Limited & Anor. V Credit Suisse International [2015] EWHC 384 (Ch):  acting for Claimants in multi million dollar damages claim against a bank arising out of the sale of an oilfield in Azerbaijan (2014/2015).

  • Acted in dispute arising out of property joint venture. Claim for approx. £6m (settled 2016).

  • Hertel v Saunders: Acting for claimants in proceedings arising out of commercial joint venture. Case reported on requirements of Part 36 Offer at [2014] 5 Costs LR 825. Pending appeal to Court of Appeal.

  • Acting for claimant in Commercial Court in multi-million pound claim arising out of repudiation of software international licensing agreement. 8 day trial fixed for May 2017.

  • Advising on enforceability of ATE insurance in light of alleged non-disclosure (2015).

  • Acting in proposed ICC arbitration regarding dispute between hotel and management company (2015).

  • Acting in claim for approx. £670,000 against shipping agent for commission rebate said to have been underpaid (continuing).

  • Instructed in 2 separate cases involving disputes arising out of the termination of franchise agreements in 2 separate areas of business (2016).

  • £2m claim for alleged profit share on sale of commercial properties (2015).

  • LCIA Arbitration involving claims and cross-claims alleging breaches of licence agreement for the broadcasting of an international TV channel in foreign territories (2013).

  • Dispute between Senior Clerk and Barristers Chambers: acting for some 20 barristers in this interesting and unusual dispute in the Chancery Division in a claim made by a former senior clerk seeking payment of fees alleged to be owed to him which was met with a firm defence and substantial counterclaim (satisfactory settlement 2012).

  • Claim by professional footballer: acted for a professional footballer in connection with claims arising out of a purported tax avoidance scheme sold to him (and other footballers) by alleged misrepresentations (satisfactory settlement 2012).

  • Acted for successful defendants in the leading contract case of Walford v Miles [1992] 2AC 128, a decision of the House of Lords establishing the unenforceability under English law of agreements to negotiate/agreements to agree.


Partnerships and LLPs

 

Edward has regularly advised and acted in partnership and LLP disputes. His assistance is often sought in the context of disputes among partners/members of professional partnerships/LLPs, where his extensive knowledge of partnership/LLP law and tactical acumen have enabled such disputes to be resolved with as little pain and acrimony as possible. He also regularly advises as to the provisions which should, or should not, be included in written partnership/LLP agreements to minimise the risk of future disputes. His multi-disciplinary expertise enables him to give complete advice on other aspects which regularly arise in partnership/LLP disputes, such as contract, insolvency, professional negligence, civil fraud, insurance and commercial property. In recent years he has acted in relation to partnerships/LLPs involving solicitors, foreign lawyers, accountants, property investment and development and asset investments.

 

Relevant cases include:

 

  • Proceedings to wind up substantial family property investment and development partnership (2015).
  • Claim to partnership interest in worldwide investments of high value.
  • Dispute in offshore partnership of lawyers (settled 2012).
  • Property partnership: long-standing dispute between the 2 partners of a property investment partnership giving rise to many complicated issues. A satisfactory settlement was secured on the first day of the hearing (2011).
  • Claim for dissolution by partner in long-established accountancy partnership in arbitration proceedings (concluded 2011).
  • Foreign (Gibraltar) lawyers partnership dispute: proceedings arising out of the collapse of the partnership, giving rise to issues of liability or otherwise of each partner to third parties under the equivalent of the English Partnership Act (2010/2011).

 

Company / Insolvency

 

Over the years Edward has handled disputes relating to company matters, including many shareholder disputes, technical issues of company law, claims against directors for breach of duty and applications for personal costs orders against company directors/shareholders. In the insolvency field, he deals with both company and personal insolvency, including claims by administrators/liquidators/trustees in bankruptcy to recover assets for the benefit of creditors, applications to set aside transactions at an undervalue and misfeasance/disqualification proceedings against directors.

 

Relevant cases include:

 

  • Claim to set aside transactions at an undervalue involving the transfer of bowling alley sites and assets and further claim against the company’s former directors for misfeasance in causing such transactions to take place (2012-2015).
  • Acting in proceedings seeking declaratory relief regarding the ownership and officers of a family investment company (2015-16)
  • Advising on potential claim by liquidator arising out of the transfer of the company’s former factory premises worth £2m to the company’s pension scheme (2014).
  • Claim by administrators of electrical goods supplier for breaches of duty by former directors of the company in causing the company to make various alleged illegitimate payments/ enter into alleged impermissible transactions. Judgment obtained at trial in April 2016 for in excess of £1.5m.
  • Claim for breach of duty against 4 former directors of a company arising out of disastrous mult-million pound ventures in India and Qatar relating respectively to the Commonwealth Games in Delhi and the World Cup bid by Qatar (settled 2013).
  • Claim to set aside transactions at an undervalue arising out of the transfer of subsidiary company in the healthcare field(2012/ 2013).
  • Gibraltar Insolvency proceedings: acting and appearing in Gibraltar Supreme Court and Gibraltar Court of Appeal in various insolvency proceedings arising out of the complex and high profile insolvency of a well-known firm of local lawyers and the bankruptcy of the partners (concluded 2012).
  • Knox v Deane [2005] BCC 884: Successfully resisted, against Leading Counsel, Privy Council appeal involving the interpretation of Barbadian company articles of association. This was the last appeal from the Barbados Court of Appeal to the Privy Council. The case is ongoing in Barbados and further advice was given in 2014.

 

Professional Negligence

 

As well as acting in cases involving alleged breaches of duties of care and skill by company directors and banks, Edward regularly acts in professional negligence claims against solicitors, accountants and financial advisers, as well as valuers, architects and surveyors. Given his expertise in other areas of law, he is well qualified to deal with professional negligence claims that involve, for example, property, company and insolvency issues. He has particular experience in dealing with difficult causation issues, issues that are often more problematic than the establishing of liability.

 

Relevant cases include:

 

  • Claim against accountants for negligent advice/failure to advise in relation to tax avoidance scheme. Judgment obtained and assessment of damages proceeding.
  • Advising on merits/quantum of a substantial number of professional negligence claims against property valuers and quantity surveyors as part of a package of claims available to be purchased (2015).
  • Claim by purchasers of property against solicitors for failure to advise that the property was within Green Belt land (2010/2011).
  • Claims by lenders against solicitors for failing properly to secure loans (2010/2011).

 

Civil fraud

 

Edward has acted over the years in many cases of fraud over a broad spectrum, including frauds involving misappropriation of trust/company funds as well as claims based upon fraudulent misrepresentation. He has considerable experience of obtaining urgent pre-emptive relief in the form of search or freezing orders and other injunctive relief, as well as in opposing applications for such relief. He is further noted for the effectiveness of his cross-examination  at the trials of such claims.

 

Relevant cases include:

 

  • Instructed in claim involving allegation of misappropriation of monies/conspiracy arising out of the management of worldwide assets (2015).
  • Acting  for one defendant in Chancery and other related proceedings claiming fraudulent misrepresentation/conspiracy arising out of a property joint venture (2015-16).
  • Acting on behalf of 2 defendants in Commercial Court proceedings in claims for £25.4m and 100m Euros arising out of abortive property purchase and development in London in which allegations made of fraudulent misrepresentatio/conspiracy. Albesher v Ryan reported at [2015] EWHC 3058 (Comm) and [2016] EWHC 541 (Comm) on hearing for default judgment and application to set aside default judgment.
  • Acting in claims by solicitors against banks for repayment of monies paid to banks by mistake as a result of internet frauds (2016).
  • Acting in commercial court proceedings arising out of alleged Russian bank fraud of over $180 million (2012-2013).
  • A claim by the English subsidiary of a substantial group of companies in respect of monies stolen from the bank account of the company through internet banking and involving the grant of a freezing injunction against recipients of the monies (2010/2011).
  • A claim for fraudulent misrepresentation against the agent of the seller of drawings falsely represented as being by a well-known artist (2010/2011).
  • Tasarruf Mevduati Sigorta Fonu v Demirel [2007] 4 All ER 1014, a decision of the Court of Appeal which concerned the alleged misappropriation of substantial sums from Turkish companies leading to a Turkish judgment and issues regarding enforcement of the same in England.

 

Career and Associations

 

King’s College, Cambridge (Entrance Exhibition)
MA (Modern Languages and Law)
J.J. Powell Prize (for top Middle Templar in Bar Finals)
Harmsworth Exhibition (Middle Temple)
Called to the Bar (Middle Temple) 1972
Recorder: Appointed 2000. Criminal and Civil tickets and Chancery ticket at Central London
Member of the Chancery Bar Association
Member of the Commercial bar Association

 

Privacy notice


Edward collects, uses and is responsible for your personal information collected during the course of providing legal services as a barrister. He is the data controller in respect of this information for the purposes of the Data Protection Act 2018 and the General Data Protection Regulation.


The members of Enterprise Chambers have a privacy policy which sets out what information they obtain about you, why and how they use it.  This policy also sets out your rights.  Members also have a data retention policy which sets out how long they keep information for and why.


You can download copies of these policies here: (1) privacy policy (2) data retention policy .  Hard copies are available on request by contacting any branch of Enterprise Chambers.