Stephen's practice includes supply chain disputes, warranty claims, heavy engineering and infrastructure disputes, commercial agency and distribution, directors' duties, fraud and commercial litigation arising out of employment relationships. He has recent or current instructions in the manufacturing, food & beverage, healthcare, energy, mining and entertainment sectors.
Stephen is an expert in handling commercial disputes which interface with regulatory or public law issues, including competition, EU law, and public procurement, often as part of a team working across different specialisms and jurisdictions. His recent experience includes representing clients operating in health, education, technology and defence in disputes arising out of contract procurements by UK central government, and leading competition litigation mandates in the High Court and Competition Appeal Tribunal. He is also a recognised specialist in disputes under the Commercial Agents (Council Directive) Regulations 1993 and has been representing agents and principals for over a decade in industries including electronics, retail, aerospace, and luxury consumer goods.
Stephen has a strong arbitration practice, conducting cases in international and domestic arbitrations under the major institutional rules (such as ICC, LCIA, and UNCITRAL) and also "ad hoc", particularly in the energy, engineering and infrastructure sectors. He has extensive experience of High Court proceedings to challenge arbitral awards under sections 67 – 69 Arbitration Act 1996 and of the enforcement of awards and judgments on behalf of successful clients in the UK and overseas jurisdictions.
Whilst Stephen is renowned as successful trial lawyer, he always endeavours to achieve his client’s objectives in a dispute through a negotiated commercial solution and is recognised for providing sensible, results-focused advice that achieves the resolution of a dispute as efficiently as possible. Clients value that his absolute commitment to their case is allied with a pragmatic and commercial approach that understands the overall context.
Stephen is recognised as a rapidly rising name in the disputes market in both of the major legal directories.
What others say…
Stephen May is genuinely excellent. He has an excellent legal brain, broad knowledge and makes sound judgment calls…He also has a good sense of humour under pressure of trial.
He is very good at handling aggressive litigation and taking rapid strategic decisions.
He is an excellent, pragmatic litigator.