Prof. Gerard McMeel

Called: 1993

Practice Overview

Gerard practises exclusively in the commercial and financial spheres, with a particular focus on banking and financial services litigation. Gerard’s commercial practice regularly includes advising on the meaning and effect of contractual terms and boilerplate clauses. He has expertise in commercial fraud, and a particular interest in unjust enrichment and restitution. His financial services practice involves acting for life offices, general insurance companies, trust companies, financial advisers and investors, especially high net worth individuals. It includes investor claims, disputes involving networks of IFAs and between product providers and appointed representatives and regulatory and disciplinary work in respect of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000.

Gerard’s significant cases include: 21st Century Logistic Solutions v Madysen [2004] 2 Lloyd’s Rep 92, Seymour v Caroline Ockwell & Co [2005] PNLR 758, AXA Sun Life Services plc v Campbell Martin Ltd [2011] EWCA Civ 133, [2011] 2 Lloyd’s Rep 1, TFL Management Services Ltd v Lloyds TSB Bank plc [2013] EWCA 1413, [2014] 1 WLR 2006, Bull v Gain Capital Holdings Inc [2014] EWHC 539 (Comm) (with Hugh Mercer QC) and Swynson Ltd v Lowick Rose LLP (formerly Hurst Morrison Thomson LLP) (in liquidation) [2017] UKSC 32, [2017] 2 WLR 1161 in the Supreme Court (with Hugh Sims QC).

Most recently, Gerard acted for Mr and Mrs Alan Shearer in their multi-million pound claim against Suffolk Life Pensions Ltd and Suffolk Life Annuities Ltd (Suffolk Life), a SIPP provider and a life insurance company, and other parties. The claims related to permissible assets in their SIPP, unregulated collective investment schemes and traded life policy investments. The trial commenced on 14 July 2017 before Mr Justice Leggatt in the Commercial Court in London, and on the second day the Shearers settled their claims against Suffolk Life on commercial terms.

Gerard is also the Professor of Commercial Law at the University of Manchester, where he teaches commercial law and banking law. Gerard has authored or co-authored a number of books, including: McMeel and Virgo on Financial Advice and Financial Products (Oxford University Press, 3rd edition, 2014) and The Law of Personal Property, (Sweet & Maxwell, 2013; 2nd edn, 2017). Most recently, the new edition of McMeel on the Construction of Contracts – Interpretation, Implication and Rectification (Oxford University Press, 3rd edition, 2017) incorporates recent developments, including Arnold v Britton (on contractual interpretation), Marks & Spencer (on implied terms) and Yam Seng (on good faith). The Construction of Contracts has been cited by courts in England, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Singapore and Jersey.


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