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Hendersons - Barristers' Chambers

Lucy McCormick

"Great determination and an understanding of the nuances of complex areas...She has an acute sensitivity to strategising."

Legal 500 2018


Call
2008

Lucy McCormick specialises in commercial dispute resolution, with expertise across a range of industry sectors. Lucy was profiled by NLJ as a ‘Mover and Shaker’ when she moved to Henderson Chambers in 2014, and has continued to build a strong following. She is particularly sought after for matters with tricky procedural aspects or complex expert evidence.

Prior to starting practice, Lucy served as judicial assistant to Mummery LJ and spent time at the Financial Markets Law Committee at the Bank of England. She has also been seconded to HSBC to assist with the FCA’s Interest Rate Hedging Product Review. As a result, she brings to bear a high degree of commercial awareness and pragmatism.

Lucy appears at courts and tribunals at all levels and is equally at home as a member of a team or as sole advocate. She also has extensive experience in representing clients at mediation and other forms of ADR.

Lucy is a member of the Attorney General’s ‘C’ Panel of Junior Counsel to the Crown.

 

Expertise


Commercial

Lucy’s commercial practice is informed by her time at the Financial Markets Law Committee at the Bank of England and on secondment to HSBC. As a result, she has a particular insight into the financial industry and the City. She is also well-known for her work in the automotive sector. While the majority of Lucy’s commercial practice is contentious, she also does purely advisory work.

Particular areas of expertise include:

  • Agency and commission
  • Banking and finance
  • Civil fraud
  • Contractual disputes
  • Consumer law
  • Debt recovery
  • Energy and utilities
  • Insurance disputes
  • Partnership and unincorporated association disputes
  • Sale of goods issues
  • Technology and telecoms

Lucy writes the practice notes for Lexis Nexis’ online service dealing with the digital aspects of the new Consumer Rights Act 2015 and with the Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013.

Lucy is a member of COMBAR.

Representative cases

grid list
  • X v Y (parties confidential)

    Advised a well-known sporting institution as to the effect of an existing contractual agreement and its impact on a new development opportunity.

  • Sekhon & Ors v Khatkar & Ors

    Acted in a 26-handed partnership dispute between black cab drivers.

  • Gibbs Gillespie (a partnership) v (1) Sturch (2) Sturch Estate Agents

    Commission claim: Established that a commonly used clause in the industry was in fact an unenforceable penalty clause, and successfully argued in favour of a novel application of the Cancellation of Contracts made in a Consumer’s Home or Place of Work Regulations 2008.

  • SMG v (1) Vanchhawng (2) Nakarintrakupt

    Acted in a complex claim by a mortgage broker arising out of a dispute with investors over the re-mortgage of their portfolio.

  • Aktiv Kaptial Portfolio AS Zug Branch v Hackett

    Claim for substantial credit card debt, raising issues of validity of assignment and CCA 1974 s.78 issues. Successful at trial, additionally obtaining rare order under CPR 31.22 for commercially sensitive documentation used at trial to be kept confidential.

Insurance & Property Damage

Lucy has a busy insurance practice, with a particular focus on property damage. She has extensive experience of acting in multi-party and high value claims arising out of:

  • Fire
  • Flooding
  • Gas and electricity tampering
  • Pests
  • Property damage
  • Subsidence (including tree roots)
  • Storms
  • Trees

Claims of this nature typically involve complex issues that span a number of specialisms. In such cases, Lucy is able to bring to bear her complementary expertise in property law, product liability and mass torts. She is regularly instructed to act on behalf of both claimants and defendants.

Lucy is a co-author of The Law and Autonomous Vehicles (Routledge, forthcoming Jan 2019), and regularly speaks and writes on the impact of this emerging technology on the insurance industry.

Lucy is a member of the British Insurance Law Association (BILA).

Representative cases

grid list
  • H v O (parties confidential)

    Advised on fire damage arising out of alleged use of a property as a cannabis farm.

  • X v J (parties confidential)

    Advised a leading confectionary manufacturer on causation issues and expert evidence in relation to the breakdown of several items of production line machinery.

  • S v A (parties confidential)

    Advised on a substantial Water Industry Act flooding claim arising out of the failure of a pumping station.

  • Kanahasunderam & Ors v British Gas

    Acted for British Gas in a matter where a gas supply at a commercial property had been disconnected for alleged tampering. Defended substantial claim for business interruption and successfully counterclaimed for value of abstracted gas.

  • Baloun v Central Bedfordshire Council

    Acted for the RTA insurer, establishing at trial that the local council was liable for property damage to a car crushed by a falling branch on a public highway.

Personal Injury, Health & Safety, Inquests

As a member of the Attorney General’s ‘C’ Panel of Junior Counsel to the Crown, Lucy undertakes a substantial amount of personal injury work on behalf of the government, with particular emphasis on multi-track litigation involving Highways England, the Prison Service, and the MOD. In addition, Lucy maintains a busy private practice acting for both claimants and defendants.

She regularly acts in cases involving:

  • Civil assault
  • Credit hire
  • Employer’s liability
  • Health & Safety
  • Highways Act cases
  • Inquests
  • Occupier’s liability
  • Personal injury
  • RTAs (especially those with a technical element arising out of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems or involving HGVs/Buses)

Lucy is regularly involved in cases where a party is a child, lacks capacity or is otherwise vulnerable, and is experienced in the practical and procedural issues this raises. As well as acting in substantive trials, she is particularly sought after for her insight into ‘tricky’ procedural issues.

Lucy is a member of the Health and Safety Lawyers’ Association (HSLA) and the Personal Injuries Bar Association (PIBA).

Representative cases

grid list
  • James Hall & Company Holdings Limited v Highways England Limited

    Acting for the government (as sole counsel) in an action arising out a fatal seven-vehicle motorway collision alleged to be linked to negligent traffic management measures.

  • Re Gardner Inquest

    Represented a motorist who had inadvertently killed a pedestrian who had run onto a motorway to retrieve luggage which had dislodged from a roof rack.

  • Re Willenhall Town Gas Works

    Instructed (as sole junior to Charles Gibson QC) in this matter where residents of a housing estate built on the site of the former Works alleged personal injuries due to environmental contamination.

  • Jones v Country Pursuits UK

    Successfully defended an occupier’s liability claim arising out of a quad biking accident, in which the alleged breaches of Health and Safety legislation were key.

  • M v Highways England

    Acting in a dispute concerning liability for catastrophic injuries sustained in an RTA at an alleged ‘accident hotspot’.

  • J v R (parties confidential)

    Acting for a claimant with Down’s Syndrome who suffered life-changing injuries when struck by a reversing vehicle as she walked to her local library.

Product Liability & Group Actions

Lucy undertakes a variety of product liability and mass torts work, with particular expertise in the automotive and healthcare sectors.

She has a particular interest in the product liability aspects of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) and Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CAVs). She is a co-author of The Law and Autonomous Vehicles (Routledge, forthcoming Jan 2019).

Lucy has strategic understanding of the process of obtaining (or resisting) Group Litigation Orders, and the structure and management of group actions. Lucy is also skilled at navigating the reputational issues which such matters often raise. She is a contributor to the leading practitioner text, Hodge on Multi-Party Actions (2nd ed, OUP, forthcoming 2019), and has assisted with research in relation to product liability aspects of Powers, Harris & Barton’s Clinical Negligence. (5th ed, Bloomsbury, 2015).

Representative cases

grid list
  • VW NOx Emissions Group Litigation

    Instructed on behalf of Volkswagen (both UK entities and foreign manufacturing entities) in relation to claims arising from vehicle emissions testing.

  • Re Willenhall Town Gas Works

    Instructed (as sole junior to Charles Gibson QC) in this matter in which it is alleged that residents of a housing estate built on the site of the former gas works sustained personal injuries due to environmental contamination.

  • Metal-on-Metal Hips litigation

    Instructed as part of a team by a prominent manufacturer.

  • G v B (parties confidential)

    Advised the insurers of a major provider of household goods on limitation issues arising out of the CPA 1987.

  • Arnold v Woodteam Limited

    Dispute over the quality of vinyl coating applied in commercial premises in Spain.

  • X v J (parties confidential)

    Advised a leading confectionary manufacturer on causation issues and expert evidence in relation to the breakdown of several items of production line machinery.

Property

Property work is a large part of Lucy’s practice, and she is especially sought after for rights of way and parking disputes. She is recognised by the Legal 500 as a leading junior in Property Litigation, and for her related work in Agriculture.

Her practice includes:

  • Real Property, including adverse possession, boundary disputes, easements, land registration and conveyancing disputes, mortgages, options and rights of pre-emption, overage, rights of light and restrictive covenants.
  • Commercial Property, including break clauses, consents, dilapidations, forfeiture, renewals, and rent reviews.
  • Residential Landlord and Tenant, including enfranchisement, dilapidations and disrepair, possession proceedings, and service charge disputes.
  • Co-ownership and trusts of land

Lucy was recently seconded to HSBC as part of the FCA’s review of the alleged mis-selling of interest rate hedging products. This role included assessing a number of claims made by property developers for loss of profit. Lucy therefore has a valuable insight into the property industry, further expanded by her experiences of the issues facing commercial landlords gained from having sat on the Estates Committee of Middle Temple.

She is regularly asked to comment on topical property issues for legal journals including Property Law Journal, New Law Journal and Solicitors Journal.

Representative cases

grid list
  • T Ltd v S & Ors (parties confidential)

    Dispute concerning an alleged conspiracy between a number of local residents to obstruct a property developer’s access to a shared passageway over which it held a right of way.

  • Ellis v (1) Fitton (2) Newman

    Four-day trial over the beneficial ownership of agricultural land.

  • Radiosite Limited v O’Connor

    Dispute about access to a telecommunications tower, leading to an application for an injunction.

  • F Ltd v X (parties confidential)

    Successful strike out application in an unusual case involving on the one hand a contractual/chancery dispute about mooring rights and on the other allegations of a breach of the Gender Recognition Act 2010 and the Data Protection Act 1998.

  • Whittle v Western Power Distribution Limited

    Dispute concerning placement of electrical/telecoms cables in agricultural land.

  • Trustees of St Mary’s Church House Trust v Bollen

    Claim for possession under the now rarely encountered Rent Act 1977. The matter raised capacity and Equality Act issues and involved cross examination of a vulnerable witness.  Represented the landlord at a number of interim hearings and full day trial.

Technology

Lucy undertakes a variety of tech and IT work, primarily in the automotive and telecommunications sectors. She is particularly well known for her insight into the legal issues arising from artificial intelligence.

She a leading expert in Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CAV) and lectures nationally and internationally, with recent engagements including the European Robotics Forum, the Future of Transportation World Congress, the Society for Computers and Law, the British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association, and the Government Legal Department. She is a contributor to An Introduction to Technology Law (1st ed) (Lexis Nexis, 2018), and a co-author of The Law and Autonomous Vehicles (1st ed) (Routledge, 2019).

Lucy is on the Consulting Editorial Board for Lexis Nexis Technology Media and Telecoms content. She has written widely on various technology issues, notably on the digital aspects of the new Consumer Rights Act 2015.

Lucy was a finalist for the 2017 CogX Artificial Intelligence award for Industry Analysis.

Representative cases

grid list
  • VW NOx Emissions Group Litigation

    Instructed on behalf of Volkswagen (both UK entities and foreign manufacturing entities) in relation to claims arising from vehicle emissions testing.

  • Radiosites Ltd v O’Connor

    Acting for telecommunications company in a dispute about access to a telecommunications tower, leading to an application for an injunction. This was a matter of particular urgency given that the site forms part of EE’s 4G network which is shortly to run the ‘Emergency Services Network’.

  • Whittle v Western Power Distribution Limited

    Acting in dispute concerning placement of electrical/telecoms cables.

  • Gibbs v British Telecommunications Plc

    Successfully represented BT at trial in a dispute concerning broadband speeds.

  • James Hall & Company Holdings Limited v Highways England Limited

    Acted for the government (as sole counsel) in an insurance dispute arising out a fatal seven-vehicle motorway collision. The case revolved around various items of motorway technology, including the capabilities of the VMS (“Variable Message Signs”), MIDAS (“Motorway Incident Detection and Automatic Signaling”) and ANPR (“Automatic Number Plate Recognition”) systems.

 

What the directories say


"A strong and formidable advocate... gains early command of the facts and has a calm, reasoned manner."
Legal 500 2017

"Client-friendly, very astute and quick at turning around difficult material."
Legal 500 2016

Instructing Lucy McCormick

If you require help or advice please contact our clerking team

Call +44 (0)20 7583 9020
or email

Appointments
  • Junior Counsel to the Crown (C Panel, 2016-)
  • Advocacy Tutor, Middle Temple
  • Consulting Editorial Board, Lexis Technology Media and Telecoms
  • Judicial Assistant to Mummery LJ, Royal Courts of Justice (2008-9)
Publications
  • Contributor to Hodge on Multi Party Actions (2nd ed) (OUP; forthcoming 2019)
  • Co-author of The Law and Autonomous Vehicles (1st ed) (Routledge; forthcoming Jan 2019)
  • Contributor to An Introduction to Technology Law (1st ed) (Lexis Nexis, 2018)
  • Researcher for product liability for medicinal products aspects of Powers & Harris Clinical Negligence (5th
    ed) (Bloomsbury, 2015)
Memberships
  • British Insurance Law Association
  • Commercial Bar Association
  • Health and Safety Lawyers’ Association
  • Personal Injury Bar Association
  • Property Bar Association
  • Society for Computers & Law
Education
  • Bar Vocational Course, ICSL (2007-8) awarded Queen Mother’s Scholarship (BVC), Middle Temple
  • Graduate Diploma in Law, Oxford Brookes (2006-7) awarded Queen Mother’s Scholarship (CPE), Middle Temple
  • Modern History, Somerville College Oxford (First class) (2003-6) awarded Cecil Roth Thesis Prize, Eugene Lee Hamilton Prize, Mary Somerville Prize, Coombs Exhibition
Regulatory Information

All members of Chambers are registered with the Bar Standards Board of England and Wales. For our standard contractual terms click here.

Bar Council Number: 53425

VAT Registration Number: 110 163 968

Legal Status: Barrister

Professional Insurance: All members of Chambers have professional liability insurance provided by the Bar Mutual Indemnity Fund Ltd. Territorial coverage is world-wide and subject to the term of the Bar Mutual. Click here for details.

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