Timothy Frith

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Legal 500

Timothy Frith

Year of Call: 1996

Timothy is a barrister with MJM Barristers & Attorneys, Hamilton, Bermuda but remains a door tenant at Devereux Chambers where he was a member from 2009 to 2012. He has a strong commercial, chancery, corporate and insolvency practice with expertise in complex multi-jurisdictional high value trust, insolvency and commercial litigation in Supreme Court. He has represented international and domestic clients in Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, Arbitrations and Mediation. He is also regularly instructed by Government ministers and departments.

Recent notable cases include:

  • Gleeson v MDM Ltd [2015] (CA) (Bda) [pending]

  • Gleeson v MDM Ltd [2014] (SC) (Bda)

  • Ribaroff v Williams & Ors [2014] (SC) (Bda) 11 Civ

  • Fifth Street Finance v Dobbin [2013] (SC) (Bda)

  • Chapper v Jackson (2012) Chancery Trial establishing criteria for the duty of care of a Trustee in Bankruptcy

  • Byrne v Gubbins [2011] EWCA Civ 1345 Case involving the remoteness of damage in the sale of faulty agricultural machinery

  • Southern Rock Insurance Co Ltd v Endsleigh Insurance (2011) acted as junior in claim by offshore insurance company for the negligence of the claims handling company. Instructed by Hogan Lovells

  • BT v Wittanhurst (2010) Acted for BT in dial through fraud case which settled prior to trial

  • Lynsey Anne Beard v Azur Villas & Ors (2009) Successfully acted for four Defendants facing wide ranging commercial fraud allegations. Following two weeks in the QBD Judgment was given in favour of the Defendants with indemnity costs awarded against the Claimant. [Reported in National Press]

  • The Magna Trust v Saxon Lifts (2008) Successfully acted for Defendants in 7 day trial in Sheffield concerning alleged defects in the engineering and design work of a scissor lift installed in a visitor attraction

  • Said Shaban & Tleel Trading v Cadbury International (2008) Successfully acted for a Dubai based Middle Eastern distribution network in a claim for wrongful termination of a distribution agreement. Arbitration seat in London where evidence, submissions and costs arguments were heard over five days

  • Lloyds TSB v Edmondson (veterinary) (2008) Successfully set aside the directors guarantees relied on by the bank in a claim for an indemnity of defaulted loans to the veterinary practice. (Heard in Southampton County court over 5 days)

  • Datafind v Sugden (2008) A claim in the Chancery Division for wrongful diversion of an IT business. Following interim applications settled at mediation

  • Quest 4 Finance Ltd v John Maxfield & Ors [2007] EWHC 2313 (QB) 2 CLC 706

  • Broadway Investments Hackney Ltd v Lowell Gerald Grant (2006) (CA) LTL 20/12/2006 (2007) HLR 23 (2007) L&TR 11

  • Smiths Detection Watford Ltd v Berriman (2005) EAT LTL 27/9/2005 All ER (D) 56

  • Wadsworth v Nagle [2005] EWHC 26 (QB) LTL 6/4/2005 All ER (D) 216

  • Re A Debtor sub nom Valder v Durrant & Anor (2003) LTL 10/7/2003 All ER(D) 177

  • Scancom International A/S v RWH Enterprises Ltd [2003] (QBD) All ER (D) 89

  • Brent London Borough Council v Douglas Reynolds (CA) (2001) 50 EG 89, Times December 18 2001

  • Commercial Litigation

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    Domestic and international contractual and commercial disputes concerned with the supply of goods and services, secured finance agreements, the carriage of goods, agency, construction, distribution disputes, banking, partnership, professional negligence, insurance, sport, telecommunications, receivables financing and commercial fraud.

    Examples of recent cases:

    • Representing management investment partners in $1billion trust claim which is central to the disputed control of a multinational company with a capitalisation of $40billion and $200billion assets under management. Hearings and Meetings in Bermuda, Toronto, New York and London.

    • Acting for Attorney General of Bermuda on a defamation action against the leader of the opposition.

    • Acting for Speaker of the House of Assembly on proposed Parliamentary Procedure (Amendment) Act.

    • Acting for Bermudian Fund Manager and a Trust Company in a $10million dispute concerning the sale and purchase of a fund management company. Supreme Court proceedings and mediation in Bermuda.

    • Acting as lead lawyer in a Bermudian dispute for a declaration that a $100million portfolio of shares in Canadian Companies is held on trust for a South African businessman.

    • Representing US Creditors in Bankruptcy of Canadian Businessman in Bermuda following collapse of Elephant and Castle restaurant chain in USA and Canada.

    • Acted on ICC Arbitration for an oil industry supplier and consultant against an Argentine well capping explosive supplier.

    • Judicial review of minister of finance on a TIEA application in Bermuda.

    • Acted on behalf of a Spanish property company against Bermudian guarantor for rent arrears of cinema complex in Madrid. Hearings in Bermuda. Meetings in Madrid and London.

    • Acted for a New York Finance House against Bermudian guarantor involving preliminary issues of Canadian Law.

    • Southern Rock Insurance Co Ltd v Endsleigh Insuranceacted as junior in claim by offshore insurance company for the negligence of the claims handling company. Instructed by Hogan Lovells.

    • Represented a Jordanian distributor in four linked arbitrations against Johnson & Johnson (Middle East) with settlement conferences in Dubai and Jordan.

    • Represented a Jordanian Distributor against Beechams International in an ICC arbitration involving hearings and meetings in London, Dubai and Jordan.

    • Acted for Spanish equity fund in company shareholder dispute concerning restaurants in Regent’s park and Canary Wharf.

    • Acted for four sets of Defendants in a series of Claims in the Queen’s Bench Division by the Administrators of a finance company for indemnity payments from company directors under warranty documents.

    • Appeared in a Claim in the Chancery Division under s.303 and s.304 of the Insolvency Act 1986 against a Trustee in Bankruptcy.

    • Acted for equity investor in claim against EMG Holdings to recover funds frozen in Malaysia.

    • Acted for subcontractor in dispute associated with the fitting out of office space in Canary Warf development.

    • Acted for quarry owners in a claim arising out of arson which delayed ongoing diversification works.

    • Acted for a Spanish thread manufacturer in the Queen’s Bench Division in a dispute concerning the quality of moquette fabric for the mass transport industry.

  • Commercial Disputes

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    Company and Insolvency Law: involving personal and corporate insolvency, minority shareholders' claims, directors’ disqualification proceedings and a wide range of applications under the Companies Act 2006.

    Examples of recent cases:

    • Advised Bermuda Government on establishment of Tourism Authority and chief draftsman of Tourism Authority Act 2013.

    • Advised with regard to priority disputes in the liquidation of investment funds linked to the Madoff Ponzi Scheme.

    • Drafted and appeared on a construction summons in extensive family property and trust dispute.

    • Advised in a Minority Shareholder Dispute involving a $200million oil rig purchase in Norway.

  • Fraud

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    A specialist in civil fraud, has expertise in associated insolvency and property elements of commercial cases, which often involve elements of fraud. Timothy has been involved in domestic, international contractual and commercial disputes concerned with the supply of goods and services, secured finance agreements, the carriage of goods, agency, construction, distribution disputes, banking, partnership, professional negligence, insurance, telecommunications, receivables financing and commercial fraud. Within company and insolvency law, He has received instructions involving personal and corporate insolvency, minority shareholders' claims, directors’ disqualification proceedings and a wide range of applications under the Companies Act 2006.

    Examples of recent cases:

    • Acted for BT on a commercial fraud case linked to the dishonest resale of telecommunication services.

    • Acted on a commercial fraud case involving the dishonest obtaining of loans and failure of the company involved to effect the required security documentation.

    • Represented Spanish lawyers in an application to clear charges on HM Land registry that were dishonestly obtained as part of a fraud involving the sale of a nightclub in Tenerife.

    • Represented Claimants in a multiparty action in the Chancery Division concerning “the theft of the business” of a plastics recycling and waste disposal business. [Breach of restrictive covenants, misuse of confidential information and client lists].

Memberships and Associations

COMBAR, IBA, ILA, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, CLA (elected member of National Legal and Parliamentary Committee 2009-2012, Chairman of Surrey Branch 2010-2012, Vice Chairman of Surrey Branch 2007-2010)

Awards and Scholarships

Pegasus Scholar (1999) Singapore

Prize: Roosevelt Study Centre Essay Prize 1991 (For the best original work by a European Undergraduate)

Appointments

Called to the Bar of Bermuda (2013)

Registered Associate Bermuda Bar (2012)

CEDR Accredited Mediator (Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution) (2004)

Called to the Bar of England & Wales: November 1996 (Middle Temple)

Education

Lecturer (Part-Time) (BPP Law School) (2004-5)

Direct Public Access Certification (College of Law) (2004)

Diploma in International Arbitration (2003)

Chartered Institute of Arbitrators [Malaysia]

Bristol University (2000-2003)

LLM (Commercial Law) (2003)

The Bar Vocational Course (1995-6)

The Inns of Court School of Law

The Common Professional Examination (1994-5)

The College of Law (Guildford)

St Andrews University MA (Hons) (1987-1991)                          

Junior & Senior Honours Modern History (1989-91) Graduated: 2:1

Reigate Grammar School (1979-1988)

Subjects Taken:

Commercial Law, Company Law, Employment Law, Credit Security and Insolvency

Dissertation on Insurance law:

“Subrogation: The Development of Conceptual Unity”

Languages

Spanish

Publications

The International Comparative Guide to Insurance and Reinsurance (2015)

The International Lending and Secured Finance Review (2013-2015)

Telecommunications and Media (2013-15) (GTDT) (edited by Freshfields)

“The Measure of Charity”: Bermuda and the Parametric Reinsurance of African Drought Relief (2013) (ICG I&R)

Asset Finance & Secured Lending (2013-14) (PLC)

Dispute Resolution Multijurisdictional Guide (2013) (PLC) edited by Lord Philips

Investment Opportunity & Telecommunication Reform (Law Society Gazette) (2012)

Insuralex Review (2014)

Contributing Editor to Butterworth’s Law of Limitation

Regular contributor to MJM law blog, circulars and reviews

Personal Interests

Sailing, literature, theatre, diving, country pursuits and travel