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Private Equity and Hedge Fund Disputes

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The CMS disputes team acts for a wide variety of businesses and individuals across multiple investment structures and asset classes both domestically and internationally. 

We work with fund managers and advisors as well as investors on disputes, from fund inception and establishment, to redemption and closing. 

We also advise private equity investors and corporate vehicles and their officers across the investment lifecycle including disputes over seed capital, management of the business, operational issues, sale of the business, public listing and distribution of capital to investors.

Our contentious teams work closely with transactional colleagues in the Funds and Private Equity practices. 

Our experience includes advising:

  • A fund manager on the recovery of carried interest.
  • A general partner on a dispute over the calculation and timing of redemptions.
  • A pan-European fund on a substantial property insurance claim.
  • An overseas investor over operation of a controlling JV entity and issues arising from approval of expenditure and further investment.
  • An investor on the recovery of invested funds misappropriated from a corporate vehicle for the development of social media applications.
  • A high net worth investor on management and investment strategy failings of its advisor.
  • Fund managers on negligence claims against valuers and solicitors.
  • A property fund, defending claims made abroad by tax authorities.
  • Litigation at first instance and on appeal in the Cayman Islands concerning redemptions under a master/feeder fund structure.
  • An property fund on recovery of over £30m from a borrower relating to a substantial real estate asset in England.
  • A Jersey and Guernsey structure on the removal of an underperfoming invesment advisor.
  • A joint mandate manager of a technology fund against Part 20 claims made by the co-manager in proceedings brought by the fund against that manager. 

"The practice regularly handle complex and high-value disputes, and draws on its international network to provide multi-jurisdictional support."

Legal 500, 2024

"For one client, the ‘vast amounts of experience and great focus on commerciality and strategy’ differentiates the team from other teams."

Legal 500, 2024

"Highly accomplished in handling claims involving issues of professional negligence, civil fraud and corporate crime, as well as banking law."

Chambers, 2024

"An excellent and well resourced dispute resolution team with vast amounts of experience and great focus on commerciality and strategy."

Legal 500, 2024
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CMS International Construction Study 2024
In recent years, construction and engineering businesses have faced a whole storm of headwinds. CMS, in partnership with YouGov, asked in-house lawyers about the biggest challenges of managing disputes in this environment - and how those challenges can be met.   Sixty-second summaryThe evolving nature of construction risk will see changes to standard contracts and negotiation positions. It may also bring more disputes, particularly where those changes lag behind project realities. Fewer than half the businesses we surveyed reported that the in-house legal or contract management team is always consulted at the start of a project to identify areas of risk and to establish appropriate risk management strategies. Most in-house lawyers believe their businesses could improve the way in which risk is managed during projects - often in a number of important ways. Despite the potential benefits, only 17% of the in-house lawyers we surveyed are using AI in disputes or contract management. Some say they will never use it. Most in-house lawyers believe their businesses have a lot of scope to improve the way that project risks are managed. AI has the potential to be a game-changer in this area by optimising processes, planning, scheduling and other elements of case management and by revolutionising the way a business handles its portfolio of contracts. 
Protection from protests
Protest on the streets, protest online, even litigation used as a vehicle for protest. Protestors targeting a business may be standing in a crowd, holding a placard or shouting slogans. But they may also be behind a computer screen or pursuing a claim against the business through the courts. They may even be working inside the business, preparing to compromise its systems or leak confidential information. Whether they are activists, employees or customers, all these protestors may present a substantial challenge and a real threat to businesses, in areas including its security, reputation and bottom line.