Fountain Court Chambers

London & Singapore

Marianne ButlerCall Date: 2003

“Extremely hard-working and experienced in the area of professional regulation. Her advice is always to the point, very commercial and delivered with authority in an accessible and user-friendly manner.” “She did an amazingly good job of defending a lot of the most serious allegations and her written advocacy was astonishingly good.” (Chambers and Partners 2019)

“She gives down-to-earth, accurate advice, and the clients adore her – she’s a star of the future.” (Legal 500 2019)

“She has technical expertise and an impressive client manner; a pleasure to work with.” (Legal 500 2019)

“A diligent and bright junior who gets on top of the issues quickly, even in the most complicated cases.”  (Chambers and Partners 2019)

“A delight to work with. She works extremely hard for clients.” (Chambers and Partners 2019)

“Clever and practical.”  (Chambers and Partners 2019)

Pound for pound she is the crème de la crème and an absolute dream to work with.(Legal 500 2017)

“She works tirelessly for her clients. She provides very clear, logical advice in a sensitive and caring way.” (Chambers UK Bar 2018)

“Incredibly thorough, incredibly detailed and very user-friendly. She has excellent, clear advocacy skills.”  (Chambers UK Bar 2018)

 ‘Very bright and responsive and an absolute pleasure to work with.’ (Legal 500 2017)

Marianne Butler has a broad commercial practice with a particular interest and expertise in professional disciplinary work (of lawyers, financial services providers and those operating in other markets), which is the core area of her work. In addition to regularly acting for and advising the regulators, she has extensive experience of undertaking highly discrete investigations and defence work for City firms and individuals in respect of complaints made, or threatened, against them, and in defending tribunal proceedings. Marianne additionally advises City firms with regards to their ongoing regulatory/risk compliance. The nature of this work is necessarily highly confidential.

Please do not hesitate to contact Marianne or her clerks (Sian Huckett and Declan Gray) if you would like further details about any aspect of her practice.

Areas of Expertise

  • Banking & finance
  • Commercial dispute resolution
  • Fraud: civil
  • International arbitration
  • Professional discipline
  • Professional negligence
  • Travel

Recommendations

Comments from the directories include:

“Incredibly thorough, incredibly detailed and very user-friendly. She has excellent, clear advocacy skills.”  (Chambers UK Bar 2018)

“She works tirelessly for her clients. She provides very clear, logical advice in a sensitive and caring way.” (Chambers UK Bar 2018)

‘Very bright and responsive and an absolute pleasure to work with.’ (Legal 500 2017)

‘She provides clear and logical advice in a sensitive and caring way.’ (Legal 500 2017)

Pound for pound she is the crème de la crème and an absolute dream to work with.’ (Legal 500 2017)

‘A big-time star of the future, she is fantastic and an absolute pleasure to work with.’

“A formidable barrister, an excellent advocate, and thorough in her written work.” (2014)

“Enormously bright with an intelligence that she applies in a very practical way.” (2014)

Formidable (2011)

a great junior for tricky cases, capable of dealing with the unusual. Extremely hardworking, but fun and sassy too (2009)

Summary of practice

Marianne has extensive experience in all kinds of commercial litigation and arbitration. Recent and current matters include (in alphabetical order):

International Arbitration

  • Acting on her own in complex UNCITRAL arbitration proceedings arising out of the construction of a facility for an African government.
  • Acting with Jeff Chapman QC in the Commercial Court and related arbitral proceedings arising out of an oil exploration dispute off Sierra Leone.
  • Acted with Andrew Mitchell QC and Derrick Dale QC in the Commercial Court and related arbitral proceedings in respect of a dispute about the operation of an African copper mine. See the decision of Blair J in [2013] 1 C.L.C. 456.
  • Acted with Craig Orr QC in long-running and complex UNICTRAL arbitration proceedings arising out of the construction of a major strategic defence facility for an African government involving allegations of bribery and corruption.
  • Acted with Craig Orr QC in ICC arbitration proceedings arising out of the construction and supply of a naval vessel to African state government.

Commercial Litigation

  • Acting with Michael Crane QC for insurers in respect of a claim arising out of the August 2011 riots under the Riot (Damages) Act 1886. See [2014] 3 WLR 576 (Court of Appeal) and [2014]  1 ALL ER 422 (Flaux J).
  • Acted with Patricia Robertson QC for a large firm of financial advisors (the lead defendant of 500 defendants) in respect of proceedings brought by the FSCS in the Commercial Court arising out of the collapse of Keydata.
  • Acted with Richard Handyside QC on behalf of an international investment bank in relation to a number of derivative transactions (including interest rate swaps) entered into between the bank and various foreign local authorities involving jurisdiction disputes.
  • Acting for a major retail bank in various proceedings brought against it regarding claims of ‘mis-sold’ interest rate swaps.
  • Acted with Finola O’Farrell QC in a multi-million pound contractual dispute concerning the biggest transport advertising contract in the world.
  • Acted with Adam Tolley for a financial advisory business in proceedings brought by the company against individuals and a competitor business for breach of restrictive covenants, conspiracy and breach of confidence, involving an 8 week trial in the QBD [2012] EWHC 224.
  • Acted with James Lewis QC for the defendant company (the holding company of a substantial multinational enterprise) in a dispute involving allegations of fraudulent misrepresentation.
  • Acted with Mark Simpson QC for a private bank in proceedings before the TCC.
  • Experience of dealing with claims by vexatious litigants (including a successful application for an extended civil restraint order in Bezant v Rausing and others [2007] EWHC 1118).
  • Acted for a large telecommunications company in respect of a mulit-million pound third party debt order.
  • Instructed with Anthony Boswood QC by a high profile individual to strike out a substantial claim against him for want of prosecution.
  • Acted for an individual in setting aside a substantial 2-year old judgment obtained against him by the Inland Revenue.
  • Acted and advising in a full range of general commercial disputes. Recent subject matter has included share purchase agreements, issues arising under the Commercial Agents Regulations and in respect of claims against builders and other construction contractors.
  • Advised an educational establishment with regard to recovery of unpaid funding from the European Regional Development Fund.
  • Instructed on an application for detailed assessment pursuant to section 70(4) of the Solicitor’s Act 1974.

Banking & Finance

Advised and acted for major high street banks, private banks and other parties in relation to a wide variety of matters including:

  • Acting with Jeff Chapman QC in proceedings against a major retail bank in respect of FX trading.
  • Acting with Ray Cox QC in proceedings against a major retail bank in respect of allegations relating to the suitability of financial products sold in 2008.
  • Acted with Richard Handyside QC on behalf of an international investment bank in relation to derivative transactions (including interest rate swaps) entered into between the bank and a foreign local authority involving a jurisdiction dispute.
  • Acted for a major retail bank in various proceedings brought against it regarding claims of ‘mis-sold’ interest rate swaps.
  • Acted with Mark Simpson QC for a private bank in proceedings for breach of contract and negligence in the TCC.
  • Acted for the Bank of Cyprus in a claim involving alleged undue influence.
  •  Advised with Bankim Thanki QC with regard to the merits of a substantial breach of warranty claim.
  • Instructed for Barclays and Lloyds in numerous fraud claims against third parties including against ex-employees.
  • Advised and acted for a variety of major high street banks concerning claims under mortgages with particular experience of issues of undue influence, mistake and rectification.
  • Advised and acted for a major high street bank in a case involving alleged false imprisonment.
  • Advised in connection with claims for compound interest in the light of the judgment in Sempra metals.
  • Advised and appearing for Barclays, HSBC and others in the County Court concerning issues arising out of the bank charges test case against the OFT.
  • Advised and acted for an individual against Barclays in successfully discharging and removing a legal charge of substantial value from the Charges Register on the grounds of limitation.
  • Advised and acted for Barclays Bank in numerous cases involving issues such as breach of mandate; the construction and enforceability of guarantees, loans and terms and conditions.
  • Advised the Consumer Action Group with regard to bringing claims against debt collectors and/or banks for harassment.
  • Acted for a lender in respect of a claim for breach of warranty of authority.

Civil Fraud

Marianne has experience of acting for both claimants and defendants in complex fraud disputes:

  • Acting on her own in complex UNCITRAL arbitration proceedings arising out of the construction of a facility for an African government.
  • Acted with James Lewis QC for the defendant company in a multi million pound dispute involving allegations of fraudulent misrepresentation listed for trial in the Chancery Division in February 2012. The case was settled in December 2011.
  • Acted with Craig Orr QC in long-running and complex UNICTRAL arbitration proceedings arising out of the construction of a major strategic defence facility for an African government involving issues of alleged bribery and corruption.
  • Instructed for Barclays and Lloyds (as defendant and claimant) in numerous fraud claims in the High Court and County Court.
  • Acted with Adam Tolley for a claimant company in an 8 week trial in June 2011 involving allegations of conspiracy.
  • Acted with Craig Orr QC in ICC arbitration proceedings arising out of the construction and supply of a naval vessel to African state government involving alleged fraud.

Professional discipline and regulation

Marianne has a particular interest and expertise in professional disciplinary work, which is the core area of her work. She regularly advises and acts for a wide range of regulators (in tribunal proceedings or the High Court) either in her own right or with a variety of silks within Fountain Court and elsewhere (Tim Dutton QC, Richard Coleman QC, Patricia Robertson QC, Michael McLaren QC and Simon Browne Wilknson QC in particular).

Alongside her prosecution work, she has particular experience of undertaking highly discrete investigative and defence work for City firms and individuals in respect of complaints made or threatened to the regulators and advising with regards to their ongoing regulatory/risk compliance. This work is, by its nature, extremely confidential.

Marianne regularly gives talks to the various regulators (and the regulated) and was one of the speakers last summer (on “Regulators in the Courts”) at the IBC Legal Conference (organised by Kingsley Napley) regarding Professional Discipline.  She is will be a contributing author to the next edition of Cordery on Legal Services and co-authored (with Michael McLaren QC) a chapter on the current regulatory regime in The Guide to the LSA 2007 Miller & Thorne, 2009 (Lexis-Nexis).

Advised and acted on various matters concerning solicitors for both the regulator and the regulated including:

  • Acting for a large number of City firms (and individuals) in respect of complaints made to the regulator about the conduct of the firm and senior individuals within it (ongoing).
  • Advising various City firms as to matters of regulatory compliance (such as document ownership and destruction, confidentiality, conflicts of interest/privilege, whether they were required to make a report of serious misconduct etc) (ongoing).
  • Currently defending various senior individuals in respect of proceedings brought in the SDT regarding the collapse of the firm (listed for 3 weeks in Spring 2018).
  • Currently defending a city firm (and senior individuals within it) regarding proceedings recently referred to the SDT.
  • Currently acting for the SRA with regard to a wide range of proceedings in the SDT.
  • Currently advising various financial regulators regarding perceived accountant misconduct.
  • Acted with Tim Dutton QC for the Solicitors Regulation Authority in the landmark cases brought by two men suffering from locked-in syndrome who wanted to be assisted to die: R (on the application of AM) v DPP [2012] EWHC 2381 (Admin).
  • Instructed with Patricia Robertson QC for the SRA in a substantial hearing before the Solicitors’ Disciplinary Tribunal.
  • Instructed by the Law Society/SRA in relation to appeals to the Master of the Rolls under the Solicitors Act 1974: see e.g. Re a Solicitor No. 18 of 2008 [2008] EWCA Civ 1358. Instructed in another appeal with Nigel Giffin QC.
  • Advised the Law Society/SRA with regard to the construction of the Solicitors’ Indemnity Insurance Rules 2005 (advising as to, inter alia, the liability of salaried partners and regarding issues concerning successor practices).
  • Instructed by a mortgagee in a substantial claim against solicitors for breach of warranty of authority and negligence.
  • Acted in proceedings brought pursuant to s70 of the Solicitor’s Act 1974.

Professional negligence and related instructions:

  • Acted with Patricia Robertson QC for a large firm of financial advisors (the lead defendants of 500 defendants) in respect of proceedings brought by the FSCS in the Commercial Court arising out of the collapse of Keydata.
  • Acted with Mark Simpson QC for Mills & Reeve solicitors in Mason v Mills & Reeve [2011] 1 W.L.R. 2735 (CA) (now the leading case on late amendments), at the trial of the action Mason v Mills & Reeve [2011] EWHC 410 (ChD) and on appeal [2012] 4 Costs L.O. 511 (solicitors’ duty of care – management buy out – IHT and CGT advice).
  • Acted with Mark Simpson QC for a private bank in proceedings for breach of contract and negligence in the TCC.
  • Acted for a liquidator in successfully striking out multi-million pound proceedings brought pursuant to s212 of the Insolvency Act 1986. Bezant v Cork [2006] All ER (D) 19 August.
  • Acted for the same liquidator in successfully striking out a subsequent multi-million pound claim against him in negligence; Bezant v Rausing and others [2007] EWHC 1118 (QB).
  •  Instructed as junior with Michael Green by the Treasury Solicitors in a substantial trial concerning proceedings brought pursuant to s8 of the Company Directors Disqualification Act 1986.
  • Acted in a number of other cases involving issues of alleged negligence against professionals across a wide range of disciplines.

Aviation and Travel Law

Advised and acted for airlines on a variety of matters including liability under the Montreal Convention. Recently acted for an airline in a trial concerning an interpretation of Article 5(3) of EC Regulation 261/2004.

Reviewed the airlines’ defence to rebut compensation claims for cancelled flights in Unfit to Fly? New Law Journal, 2 February 2007. Presented a paper at the Seventh International Travel and Tourism Policy, Law and Management Conference in Edinburgh in September 2007 entitled “The Travel Industry and the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act”. Published an article of the same name in the International Travel Law Journal.

 

Education

  • BVC, BPP Law School (Very Competent)
  • CPE/Diploma in Law, BPP Law School (Commendation)
  • BA (Hons) Philosophy, Politics and Economics, Hertford College, Oxford (First)

Appointments, memberships, prizes

  • Lincoln’s Inn BVC Lord Denning Scholarship, 2002-3
  • BBP Constitutional and Administrative Law prize, 2002
  • Lincoln’s Inn CPE Lord Bowden Scholarship, 2001-2
  • Hertford College, Oxford, PPE Prize, 2000
  • Hertford College, Oxford, Distinguished Achievement Award, 2000

BSB Barristers' Register