Philipp Simon is a commercial barrister who draws on experience as a legal professional in not only England & Wales, but also Luxembourg and Germany. He is qualified to practice law in all of these jurisdictions and has rights of audience in the courts of these countries.
Philipp's focus is on cross-border work in a corporate and commercial context where he can assist clients not only with the legal challenges of different foreign jurisdictions but also on differences in process, procedure, language and culture. His expertise ranges from cross-border mergers/company/joint venture work through jurisdiction issues and enforcement of judgments to advising government figures on European Competition Law matters and the so called "passporting" of rights and licences. Banking and finance as well as corporate insolvency are particular areas of strength.
Philipp is one of very few people able to advise on both English and Luxembourg law issues and this expertise gives him an undoubted edge given that Luxembourg is one of Europe's principal financial centres and the biggest centre of the Investment Fund outside the USA.
His clients include major corporates, inhouse counsel, high net worth individuals and litigation funders.
With a view to Germany, Philipp has recently acted in the Hamburg Registry of the German High Court (Landgericht Hamburg) where he successfully defended a negligence claim against two board members of an insolvent listed company.
Areas of expertise
- Commercial dispute resolution
International work is the mainstay of Philipp’s practice and he advises on a wide variety of commercial areas (see the other parts of his profile). He has particular expertise operating across Europe but also handles work further afield.
His international work covers not only commercial cases but also personal injury and private client work, acting for English speaking clients abroad.
- Philipp has recently done a fair bit of insurance related work, assisting clients to understand the ins and outs of the German and the English Insurance Acts.
- His international profile has led to his involvement in the major international SKAT case which concerns alleged dividend arbitrage fraud litigation. SKAT has brought proceedings in the Commercial Court in London in a case with about 100 defendants, seeking over £2bn. There are associated proceedings against hundreds of Defendants in Denmark, the USA and Malaysia. Philipp acted for a Luxembourg resident defendant and he managed to get SKAT’s case withdrawn against that defendant, pending a strike out application.
- Philipp regularly advises English litigation funders on the prospects of perceived cases of medical negligence governed by German law. This includes reviewing the available material in respect of its merits in law, the procedural circumstances and the economic environment of the case.
- He also often advises English travellers, their insurances and solicitors where the traveller has suffered an accident abroad (and Germany in particular) and are now forced to seek redress abroad and under foreign law. Such advice covers remedies and quantum available under substantive law as well as procedural steps that must be taken to successfully bring a claim.
- Philipp has helped both foreign clients in England and English clients abroad with the process of obtaining probate and administrating the estates of deceased persons at home and abroad.
- Commercial litigation
Philipp regularly appears in the context of international and cross-border commercial litigation. His background means that his cases often have a “German connotation” and may entail aspects of German law or language. For example, he recently acted for the GT-racing wing of a leading Formula 1 team on the recovery of a vehicle from Germany. In the High Court Philipp won an order for delivery up against the defendants, a German motor sport team, and subsequently guided the client through the German process of enforcement of the English judgment.
He has a particular niche in product liability and has acted for both private clients and insurance companies in relation to defective and sub-standard medical devices, where they have caused harm and injury, and advised and assisted with associated claims.
His work is often advisory such as, on instructions by one of Germany’s leading law firms, providing extended guidance on English contract law and the construction and interpretation of a specific set of contracts entered into by a leading manufacturer of interior and gauge components with a British household name car manufacturer.
- Companies, joint ventures & partnerships
Companies, joint ventures & partnerships
Philipp has wide experience of advising in relation to international mergers and frequently acts under the Companies (Cross Border Mergers) Regulations 2007. This ensures regular appearances in the Companies Court and the High Court. Philipp also regularly acts in shareholder disputes both in advisory and advocacy capacities.
- Re Get Business EWHC 2677 (Ch): Philipp obtained a long sought decision on Regulation 7(2)(e) confirming his view that the date from which the holding of shares entitles the holders to participate in profits may be a past date.
- Philipp provided the key advice leading to the so called Formenta decision, paving the way for so called “reverse mergers”.
- Banking & finance
Banking & finance
Philipp regularly advises UCITS, AIF(M)s and other fund structures. He therefore has a good understanding of Investment Funds and their regulatory framework which he uses for both English and foreign clients.
- Private international law
Private international law
Philipp regularly advises and represents clients in cases where conflicts of laws have a pivotal impact. To that effect he draws on his knowledge of international provisions and treaties like the recast Brussels Regulation, the Lugano convention, the Hague Convention, as well as the Vienna & Rome conventions.
For example, in Weir v. Lavatec (B50CF015) Philipp argued in the Commercial Court how the Brussels Regulation in conjunction with the Product liability directive gave rise to the applicability of German law & jurisdiction.
- Insolvency & restructuring
- Corporate insolvency
Like most of Philipp’s work, his corporate insolvency practice has an international connotation in a high value context.
- Hellas Telecommunications (Luxembourg) II S.C.A. insolvency: one of the largest pre-arranged insolvencies ever. The company had issued € 960 million in subordinated notes in Luxembourg, before filing for insolvency in England having shifted COMI. Philipp advised a group of unsecured creditors with a substantial stake. The litigation took place in England, the USA and Luxembourg with Philipp fronting the Luxembourg litigation.
- Personal insolvency
Philipp’s personal insolvency work centres around his international practice. On several occasions Philipp has been retained to challenge personal bankruptcy petitions brought by petitioners seeking to obtain a discharge from an English court where doing so was an abuse of process because the petitioners had no intent to take up residency in England and simply sought to rely on the English process which runs much quicker than some of its European equivalents.
- Property insolvency
Philipp has advised a string of clients in relation to failed investments in German real estate development projects, most notably in relation to the “German Property Group”, formerly known as “Dolphin Trust GmbH”. His work in this area has entailed obtaining, swapping and enforcing against German real securities.
- Corporate insolvency
- Insurance funded disputes
Insurance funded disputes
Philipp often advises English travellers in relation to their insurance policies where they have suffered an accident abroad (and Germany in particular) and are now forced to seek redress abroad and under foreign law. Such advice covers remedies and quantum available under substantive law as well as procedural steps that must be taken to successfully bring a claim.
CSR & pro bono
- Philipp is a volunteer fire fighter with the Fire Service
- Associate Governor, Cayley Primary School
- British Jurists’ Association, Germany
- The German British Chamber of Commerce
- ArsLegis e.V.
- Industrie Club Düsseldorf e.V.
- Contributor to Handbuch des internationalen GmbH-Rechts
- Barrister auf den Barrikaden, Neue juristische Wochenschrift, yr. 75, No. 39, pg,15, 22. Sept.2022
German Bar (2006)
Luxembourg Bar (2007)