Fountain Court Chambers

London & Singapore

David MurrayCall Date: 2004

David Murray practises in all areas of commercial law.

Areas of Expertise

  • Banking & finance
  • Commercial dispute resolution
  • Financial services
  • Aviation
  • Fraud: civil
  • Insurance and reinsurance
  • International arbitration
  • Professional negligence


David is recommended in the legal directories for his “outstanding” work and his “first-rate performance in everything he has done from arbitrations to obtaining injunctions in the High Court”.  He is described in Chambers & Partners as “extremely bright and able”,  as having “everything it takes to be a future star”, and as “a commercially astute junior who provides ‘an all-round first-class service’”.  The Legal 500 says he has “an authority beyond his call”.

“Experienced beyond his years, he is highly knowledgeable and always delivers advice with the client’s commercial objectives in mind.” & “His cross-examination is excellent and astute, and he has a good grasp of the technical side of the law.” – (Chambers & Partners 2020) Aviation

“Extremely bright, very confident and someone who produces good paperwork.”  & “He is really fantastic.”  (Chambers & Partners 2020) Banking & Finance 

“Provides good, sensible advice, is a really nice chap to deal with and is someone who’s prepared to work hard to get the right answer for the client.” (Chambers & Partners 2020) Commercial Dispute Resolution

“David is a very bright junior who is diligent and extremely helpful. His written work is exceptional and always impeccably judged.” “His advice is excellent, clear and timely. Clients like his no-nonsense approach and user-friendly style.”  – (Chambers 2015)

“He is quick, understands the law and is very experienced at handling banking disputes.” “Just a tremendously able guy, who’s extremely analytical.” –  (Chambers 2015)

“An extremely intelligent individual” – Legal 500 2015 Professional Negligence

“Obviously very, very clever. He is a great team player and it’s enormously helpful to have someone so affable on your team. He was happy to be phoned at any time.” (Chambers 2015)

“His writing is fantastic. He’s incredibly clever and willing to pick things up at the drop of a hat.” (Chambers 2015)

“He has a friendly, co-operative approach.” (Chambers 2015)



  • MA (Law), Christ Church, Oxford (First Class)
  • BCL, Christ Church, Oxford (Distinction and highest mark in the University)
  • BVC, Inns of Court School of Law (Very Competent)

Appointments, memberships, prizes

  • Vinerian Scholarship (Oxford University)
  • Eldon Scholarship (Oxford University)
  • Mansfield Scholarship (Lincoln’s Inn)
  • Prize for best performance in Restitution BCL paper (Oxford University)
  • Prize for best performance in Commercial Law Finals paper (Oxford University)
  • Tutor in law, Christ Church, Oxford, 2004 – 2005

Notable cases

  • The RBS Rights Issue Litigation [2017] EWHC 463 (Ch), [2017] EWHC 1217 (Ch) (very substantial litigation arising out of the £12bn rights issue carried out by RBS in 2008)
  • Thornbridge Ltd v Barclays Bank Plc [2015] EWHC 3430 (QB) (alleged mis-selling of interest-rate swap)
  • Tigris International NV v China Southern Airlines Co Ltd [2014] EWCA Civ 1649 (aviation/sale of goods)
  • Deutsche Bank AG v Petromena ASA [2015] EWCA Civ 226, [2015] 1 WLR 4225 (jurisdiction under Lugano Convention)
  • AH Baldwin and Sons Ltd v Sheikh Saud Al-Thani [2012] EWHC 3156 (QB) (sale of goods, freezing injunctions in support of foreign proceedings)
  • Stone & Rolls Ltd v Moore Stephens [2009] UKHL 39, [2009] 1 AC 1391 (House of Lords – auditors’ negligence and the illegality defence)
  • Safeway Stores Ltd v Twigger [2010] EWCA Civ 1472; [2011] 2 All ER 841 (Court of Appeal – indemnity in respect of criminal penalties)
  • Williams v Lishman, Sidwell, Campbell & Price Ltd [2010] EWCA Civ 418, [2010] PNLR 25 (Court of Appeal – deliberate concealment under the Limitation Act 1980)

Recent practice


  • David has extensive experience of aviation matters, ranging from small disputes concerning passenger claims and private aircraft to multi-million dollar claims relating to large commercial airliners.  He also has experience in the field of aviation regulation.
  • David is currently instructed in a substantial and complex arbitration between various insurance interests concerning the loss of a commercial passenger jet.
  • David has been involved in several aspects of the fallout from the collapse of Monarch Airlines: he appeared in the judicial review proceedings concerning the allocation of Monarch’s take-off and landing slots (Monarch Airlines Ltd v Airport Coordination Ltd [2017] EWHC 2896 (Admin)), and is involved in ongoing proceedings between Manchester Airport and the owner of one of Monarch’s aircraft which raise issues as to the extent of the statutory lien available to airport operators to secure unpaid airport charges.
  • Other recent experience includes a two-week Commercial Court trial (and subsequent appeal to the Court of Appeal) concerning the sale of six Airbus aircraft; a substantial dispute concerning the sale of six Boeing 747 aircraft (the case settled shortly before a 6-week trial in the Commercial Court); and a High Court claim arising out of a helicopter crash.
  • David has also advised on a variety of other aviation-related disputes, for example disputes concerning security interests over aircraft, aircraft maintenance, and aircraft leasing.  He has been instructed to provide expert evidence for foreign proceedings on the liability in English law of aircraft manufacturers for injuries suffered by passengers in air accidents.

Banking & finance

  • David has very substantial experience in all manner of banking and finance disputes.  He regularly acts for retail, commercial and investment banks.
  • David was instructed by RBS and four of its former directors in the long-running RBS Rights Issue Litigation, which settled in the summer of 2017 on the eve of what would have been a trial lasting several months.  The claim arose out of the £12bn rights issue that RBS conducted in 2008, and raised myriad issues of great factual and legal complexity.
  • David is currently acting for JPMorgan in Commercial Court proceedings brought by the Federal Republic of Nigeria worth nearly $900 million.  Among other things, the case raises issues under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.
  • On the investment banking side, recent instructions include a number of very substantial Commercial Court disputes between investment banks and European public institutions concerning a range of derivative transactions, including synthetic CDOs.  David has also recently been involved in substantial Commercial Court disputes concerning the trading of freight derivatives and commodity financing transactions.  He also has experience of claims involving complex securitisation transactions.
  • David has particular experience of cases involving derivatives of various kinds, and has been involved in several cases which raise issues of the construction or effect of documentation such as the ISDA Master Agreement.
  • He is currently acting for a number of major banks in relation to alleged mis-selling of interest-rate derivative contracts.  He was instructed by Barclays in its successful defence in one of the leading cases in this field, Thornbridge Ltd v Barclays Bank Plc [2015] EWHC 3430 (QB).
  • David has also frequently been instructed by banks in civil claims arising out of the alleged manipulation of LIBOR.
  • On the retail/commercial side, David has extensive experience of bringing and defending claims concerning loans, guarantees, mortgages and other security interests, fraud, breach of mandate, mistaken payments and negligence.
  • David has extensive experience in defending claims brought against banks under legislation such as the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999 and the Consumer Credit Act 1974.
  • David also has extensive experience of banking regulation and disputes concerning the application of rules imposed by the Financial Conduct Authority and other regulators, including the European Central Bank.

Commercial dispute resolution

  • David is regularly instructed in all types of commercial and contractual disputes in a wide range of fields, in addition to the aviation and banking and finance experience listed above.
  • Recent experience has included a series of related proceedings concerning auction sales and worldwide freezing injunctions (AH Baldwin and Sons Ltd v Sheikh Saud Ali Al-Thani [2012] EWHC 3156 (QB)), a Commercial Court dispute concerning the alleged breach of a licence agreement, and various other proceedings concerning breach of contract, misrepresentation, etc. David also has experience of disputes involving agency, including the rules which apply to commercial agents.
  • David was instructed in Safeway Stores Ltd v Twigger [2010] EWCA Civ 1472, [2011] 2 All ER 841, which raised for the first time the issue of whether a company which has been fined for breaking the law can claim an indemnity for the fine from the employees allegedly responsible for the infringement.  David was part of the team that successfully applied to have the claim struck out on the basis of the illegality defence.
  • Further recent instructions include a substantial dispute in the British Virgin Islands concerning the ownership of shares in a large mobile phone operator, a Commercial Court dispute concerning the sale and financing of a cargo ship, and a High Court dispute concerning a gold mine in Ukraine.
  • David has considerable experience of High Court and county court trials and applications, including applications for freezing and other injunctions, and other interim relief. Subject matter has included sale of goods, construction, banking and insolvency.

Conflict of laws

  • David has been involved in several international commercial disputes raising issues of jurisdiction and choice of law.  Many of the cases mentioned above featured jurisdiction and/or choice of law issues.  Further recent examples have included an application to the English court for a stay of proceedings in favour of the courts of Uganda on forum non conveniens grounds, and a number of applications to the Commercial Court for a stay of proceedings under the European judgments regulation and/or the Lugano Convention in favour of the courts of other European states (e.g. Deutsche Bank AG v Petromena ASA [2015] EWCA Civ 226, [2015] 1 WLR 4225). David also has experience of disputes involving significant elements of foreign law, and is used to working with experts on foreign law.


  • David is regularly instructed to advise on a range of insurance issues, such as coverage disputes and aggregation clauses.  Recent instructions include a very substantial dispute, which raises a number of complex coverage points, concerning claims arising out of the collapse of a major European corporation, and a dispute concerning the effect on an ATE policy of a finding of fraud against the insured.

International arbitration

  • David has considerable experience in both institutional (ICC, LCIA) and ad hoc arbitrations, both as sole advocate and as a junior member of a team.  He also has experience of arbitrations under bilateral investment treaties.
  • Recent experience has included acting as sole counsel in two ICC arbitrations – one, in London, concerning the breach of a share sale agreement relating to a joint venture company in Dubai; and one, in Paris, concerning the design and manufacture of a grand prix racing motorcycle.
  • Experience as a junior includes an ICC arbitration concerning a joint venture to design and manufacture gas turbines; the case involved issues of the Tribunal’s jurisdiction as well as the underlying dispute.
  • David has particular experience of arbitration-related court proceedings.  Recent examples include a substantial application to the Commercial Court for a stay of English proceedings in favour of a foreign arbitration, and an application before the courts of the Dubai International Financial Centre to have DIFC court proceedings dismissed in favour of LCIA arbitration.  David also has experience of obtaining and resisting anti-arbitration injunctions from the Commercial Court (again as sole counsel).

Professional negligence

  • David has extensive experience of professional negligence claims, particularly in the financial sector.  He was instructed (with Michael Brindle QC and Mark Simpson QC) in Stone & Rolls Limited v Moore Stephens (House of Lords: [2009] UKHL 39, [2009] 1 AC 1391) which raised for the first time the question whether an auditor can rely on the defence of illegality when sued for failing to detect fraud in the audited company.
  • David also acted (with Mark Simpson QC) in Williams v Lishman, Sidwell, Campbell & Price Ltd (Court of Appeal: [2010] EWCA Civ 418), which concerns numerous points under the Limitation Act 1980.
  • He has been instructed on numerous occasions by one of the “Big Four” accountancy practices in claims for alleged negligence in the conduct of financial due diligence exercises.
  • David has recently been instructed in relation to an auditors’ negligence dispute in Hong Kong, and a solicitors’ negligence claim in the courts of the Dubai International Financial Centre.  He has also recently been instructed by a large bank in relation to a very substantial claim for negligent investment advice.
  • David has experience of pursuing and defending solicitors’ negligence claims in a range of fields, including negligent drafting of agreements and negligent conduct of proceedings.

Other experience

  • Internship at the ICC International Court of Arbitration, Paris, October – December 2005
  • Pegasus Scholarship, Hong Kong, September – December 2007
  • David is admitted to practise in the courts of the Dubai International Financial Centre, and has appeared before the courts of Gibraltar.


French (working knowledge)

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