Barrister Alex Young

Alex Young

Year of call: 2008  

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“Tenacious & thorough. A keen sharp mind that is always focused.”

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Overview


Alex Young took a double first in history at Oxford, as well as a postgraduate degree, before converting to law at City University in London. He is a Lord Mansfield, Lord Haldane and Hardwicke Scholar of Lincoln’s Inn, and has been a member of 7BR since October 2009, having joined chambers at the end of a successful year’s pupillage.

During his legal training Alex won first prize in the annual City Criminal Law Essay as well as first prize in the Lincoln’s Inn Crowther Shield advocacy competition. A piece of research which Alex undertook during pupillage was explicitly praised by Lord Justice Munby in a reported judgment (Re Ward [2010] EWHC 16 (Fam), 1 FLR 1497).

Alex combines a keen eye for detail with outstanding oral and written advocacy, meaning he can analyse the facts and legal issues of a case from its earliest stages, and carry its preparation right through to presenting it in court. He is a popular choice with a number of specialist solicitors. Having embraced chambers’ strong multidisciplinary ethos, Alex acts for individual and major corporate clients alike in a variety of matters within his expertise, both within the United Kingdom and overseas.

Clinical Negligence

Clinical Negligence


As one of the more junior members of the Clinical Negligence team Alex assists more senior members in preparing cases on behalf of Claimants and Defendants. This includes attending interim hearings such as a recent example of attending a costs hearing in the High Court concerning allegations of negligence against a plastic surgeon. He has also carried out pro bono research for Action Against Medical Accidents (AvMA). Recently, Alex has been instructed in his own right to consider a potential claim against a GP for an alleged delay in diagnosing cancer, and a claim in respect of a vulnerable adult who sustained fracture injuries in the course of being moved in a care home. Alex is experienced in cross-examining expert witnesses on a variety of subjects, and is willing to consider instructions on a conditional fee basis.

Clinical Negligence Cases


  • A potential claim against a GP for an alleged delay in cancer diagnosis.
  • A potential claim by the estate of a vulnerable care home resident who sustained fracture injuries allegedly caused by being handled incorrectly by nursing staff.
Commercial

Commercial


Alex has extensive experience of contractual and negligence actions in the commercial sphere, having been instructed on behalf of a number of individuals and companies in disputes over debt, poor contractual performance (including building disputes) and allegedly inadequate professional services in a variety of fields. Clients have included recruitment, lettings and estate agents, IT companies, fashion designers and textiles manufacturers, food wholesalers, and various individuals ranging from customers to directors and shareholders. Being a seasoned trial advocate, Alex is particularly well-placed to advise in complex factual cases concerning alleged civil or criminal fraud and other related wrongdoing. He has a good eye for detail and is able to advise clients at the very early stages of a case as to how the evidence currently sits and what further investigations should be carried out in order to progress or defend a claim. He has also been briefed to represent clients in mediation. As well as trial advocacy he has successfully undertaken a variety of interim applications including High Court injunctions restraining winding up petitions.

Commercial Cases


Recent cases have included:

  • B v B (2016-2019): High Court action, acting for large firm of solicitors claiming in excess of £1m unpaid fees from their lay client under a conditional fee agreement, in circumstances where the retainer had been terminated mid-litigation. Alex advised extensively throughout, including on whether the defendant was in breach of an undertaking to the court. The firm was impressed with Alex’s performance and has since recommended him to its own clients in other cases.
  • H v M (2018-2019): instructed to advise individual who transferred sums totalling six figures to what proved to be fraudulent investment scheme.
  • Re X (2018): instructed to advise on all aspects of a minority shareholder / quasi partnership dispute involving allegations and counter-allegations of theft, fraud and false accounting in a small but profitable business venture.
  • C v P (2017): acting for fashion house defending claim brought by textiles manufacturer for unpaid invoices. Complex dispute of fact as to whether purchase orders had been properly fulfilled in accordance with the contract, and dispute over contractual construction. Six figure sums in issue.
  • A v F (2017): acting for international food wholesaler in contractual dispute with shipping agency over whether consignments of goods were released without proper authorisation in an overseas jurisdiction. Fraudulent collusion between one of the wholesaler’s and agency’s employees and other individuals / entities was alleged.
  • G v M (2017): High Court professional negligence action brought by investor alleging inappropriate financial advice concerning relocating overseas. Successfully argued for the pleaded defence to be struck out on the basis of serious defaults in the litigation process on the part of the defendant’s solicitors.
Financial Crime

Financial Crime


Alex’s financial criminal practice includes an international dimension: he has been instructed to advise in prosecutions brought in Jersey and the Isle of Man. In the latter he was junior counsel in a very large fraud by the fiduciary in a trust services company (AG v B), involving ancillary allegations of money laundering against an Isle of Man solicitor. Alex assisted as junior counsel in the latter case (H v Attorney General [2014] UKPC 4) during the preparation of its appeal to the Privy Council. In 2016, he was the keynote speaker at a two day anti-money laundering seminar convened by the regulatory authorities on St Kitts and Nevis.

Alex has regularly been instructed by reporting professionals in the investigation of companies and individuals where breaches of anti-money laundering law and regulation are suspected. In that role Alex has extensively interviewed directors, money laundering reporting officers and compliance officers of ‘household name’ multinational and offshore companies, and has produced detailed written reports dealing with complex disputes of fact and large volumes of documents. In his most recent instruction (Oct 2018) he was the principal draftsman of a report approximately 250 pages in length.

Financial Crime Cases


  • R v A (2017-2018) – instructed by CPS Serious Fraud Division to prosecute defendant accused, along with his identical twin brother, of six figure gift aid fraud on HMRC. Previously for the same unit Alex had sole conduct of the prosecution of Operation Scar, an HMRC series of prosecutions brought against nearly 20 individuals for tax evasion in the construction industry. Alex has prosecuted and defended a wide range of frauds and money laundering offences in this jurisdiction and overseas, and has extensive financial regulatory experience, and experience of confiscation and forfeiture under the Proceeds of Crime Act. He has lectured to practitioners on aspects of the Criminal Finances Act as part of a series of seminars delivered by chambers.
Crime

Crime


Alex is a Grade 3 CPS panel prosecutor and regularly receives instructions from CPS Complex Case Units. He has recently (2017-2019) concluded a series of four interlinked prosecutions of ‘county lines’ drugs conspiracies (Operations Umpire 1, 2, Belt and Orchard) as led junior, involving more than twenty defendants and voluminous evidence.

Alex’s criminal practice includes an international dimension: he has been instructed to advise in prosecutions brought in Jersey (2018) and the Isle of Man (2011-2014). In the latter he was junior counsel in a very large fraud by the fiduciary in a trust services company (AG v B), involving ancillary allegations of money laundering against an Isle of Man solicitor. Alex assisted as junior counsel in the latter case (H v Attorney General [2014] UKPC 4) during the preparation of its appeal to the Privy Council. He has also been instructed to investigate an incident involving multiple homicides in an overseas jurisdiction, in which role he interviewed a large number of witnesses who had suffered traumatic experiences.

Memberships


  • Midland Circuit
  • South Eastern Circuit

Crime Cases


Alex prosecutes and defends allegations of serious crime.

Recent cases have included:

  • Re B (Jan 2019) – defending limited company accused of breaches of planning permission on a large rural industrial site.
  • R v Y (Dec 2018) – led junior in seven-week trial of six defendants on allegations of attempted murder and assisting an offender, following a shooting and stabbing on a residential street in broad daylight.
  • R v W(Oct 2018) – briefed to defend one of two defendants at trial accused of a spree of night time dwelling robberies including an alleged section 18 stabbing.
  • R v R from late 2015 to December 2017 he was briefed as First Junior for the prosecution in Operation Pottery, which was described by the trial judge as one of the largest modern slavery cases ever to be brought to trial in this country and which attracted extensive national media attention. The first trial lasted some five months and involved multiple witnesses with various vulnerabilities, tens of thousands of pages of evidence, and complex issues of law and fact. Fifteen defendants were prosecuted across several indictments.
  • R v F (2016) – represented defendant accused of causing death by careless driving at trial (with contested expert evidence called by both sides) and in the Court of Appeal ([2016] EWCA Crim 1737). Alex has also prosecuted such offences, and regularly receives instructions from insurers and private clients in relation to a range of motoring offences.
Employment

Employment


Alex is an experienced employment junior who is regularly briefed in substantial claims by both employers and employees. Solicitors and lay clients alike have been impressed with Alex’s work, which has led to a number of repeat instructions on behalf of major clients including one of the UK’s largest construction firms, several NHS trusts and local authorities, as well as a world-famous London art gallery. Alex is a seasoned trial advocate who has been instructed in trials lasting upwards of seven days, including cases of unusual factual and legal complexity. Additionally, Alex has a developing appellate practice, having taken three cases to the Employment Appeal Tribunal (successfully obtaining judgment for the client in each case) and advising in several others. He also lectures regularly on employment law issues and has delivered specialist seminars to large lay and practitioner audiences.

Memberships


  • Employment Lawyers’ Association

Bonus Cases Employment Status Equality & Discrimination Termination Of Employment TUPE Whistleblowing & Victimisation

Bonus Cases


Alex has experience of cases where a dispute has arisen as to whether an employee’s bonus is discretionary or contractual, in the context of both money claims and the circumstances of bonus entitlement leading to a claim for constructive dismissal.

Employment Status


Alex has lectured on employment status as part of the annual 7BR ‘Introduction to Employment Law’ series and has advised a number of companies and individuals concerning this issue, including, in some instances, all the way to a contested trial. As well as acting in cases concerning the respective rights of employees, self-employed workers and the purely self-employed, Alex also has experience of related issues such as zero-hours contracts and continuity of employment. Recent cases which Alex has acted in concerning employment status have included an adventure sports professional who provided outdoor activities for children pursuant to a zero-hours contract with a local authority, a major fashion design company which was in dispute with one of its designers, and a director of a small but highly successful company who was removed from the board against his wishes.

Equality & Discrimination


Alex has acted in numerous cases involving allegations of race, sex, disability and age discrimination, both as standalone allegations and as adjuncts to unfair dismissal claims. He has a particular interest in age discrimination following his involvement in the seminal EAT case on the (now repealed) 2006 Age Regulations, Bailey v R&R Plant. He has lectured on discrimination generally as part of the 7BR ‘Introduction to Employment Law’ series, as well as delivering a specialised seminar on age discrimination to a large practitioner audience. More recently he also jointly led a seminar on equal pay which was delivered by chambers to the London Boroughs Legal Alliance Special Interests Group.

Recent cases in which Alex has advised / taken to trial include:

  • Acting for three Respondents (the employer and two senior managers) accused of disability discrimination by a claimant who had been dismissed for gross misconduct. After a six day hearing the claim was dismissed, the tribunal commenting that the disability evidence was ‘extremely thin’.
  • Advising a Claimant who secured a settlement from her former government department employer, in circumstances where she had claimed that her employer’s attitude to her disability had led to her being made redundant.
  • Successfully defending at trial a claim brought against a major construction company by one of its former HR managers for age and sex discrimination.
  • Successfully defending at trial a claim for race discrimination brought by a machine operator.
  • Representing a local authority in a claim brought by three members of school staff who were compulsorily retired under the old legislation. Owing to a failure to follow the retirement regulations the claimants had suffered age discrimination, but the tribunal was persuaded that, owing to the technical nature of the failure, it would not be appropriate to award any compensation.

Termination Of Employment


Alex has lectured widely on termination as part of the 7BR ‘Introduction to Employment Law’ series and also recently delivered a specialist seminar on remedies to Essex County Council’s legal department. He has been instructed by employers and employees in a large number of termination cases, including alleged constructive dismissal, wrongful dismissal, ‘whistleblowing’ dismissal, redundancy (both of the simple kind and also more complex ‘business reorganisation’ redundancies), and ordinary unfair dismissal. He has acted in cases ranging from simple half day trials up to trials lasting a week or longer, in cases valued by claimants up to six figures, and in one case where disputed expert evidence was deployed concerning the technical circumstances which had led to dismissal (namely the causes of a near-fatal accident on a construction site). He has received repeat instructions over the past several years from several major employers and also acted for numerous individuals ranging from manual workers to senior executives.

Recent cases have included:

  • Advising a civil servant in a claim brought against a government department for redundancy, in a case which settled before trial.
  • Advising a senior manager made redundant in a business reorganisation by a well-known outdoor opera company, in a case which settled favourably through negotiation before proceedings were even issued.
  • Defending successfully at trial a large IT company from multiple claims brought by aggrieved employees arising from a business reorganisation redundancy.
  • Defending successfully at trial a claim for unfair dismissal brought by one of a major company’s own HR managers.
  • Defending successfully at trial an employer which had targeted an employee with covert surveillance and then dismissed them for falsely claiming to be disabled.

TUPE


Alex has acted in several multi-respondent TUPE matters where the respondents were disputing which of them was the claimant’s employer. In two different service provision cases for the same respondent client, Alex successfully argued at multi-day contested hearings that his client was not the correct employer. He secured not only the dismissal of the respondent from the proceedings in each case, but also two costs orders against two other respondents – in one case for late disclosure, and in the other for having continued to pursue an argument beyond the point at which it had become hopeless as a matter of fact and law.

Whistleblowing & Victimisation


Alex has advised, and successfully defended at trial, employers in several cases where employees have claimed to have been dismissed or otherwise subjected to detriment for raising whistleblowing allegations (including allegations concerning potentially fatal breaches of health and safety, and alleged fraudulent claiming of overtime), including an NHS Trust, a major construction company and a company providing services to a globally recognised car manufacturer. Alex appreciates the commercial and reputational sensitivities involved in such cases, and is used to advising major clients on how best to contest such allegations.

Employment Cases


  • Hira Company Ltd v Daly UKEAT/0135/10/RN:  Having won at trial on behalf of a Claimant in a constructive dismissal case (in which, unusually, the two lay tribunal members had outvoted the employment judge), Alex successfully resisted the employer’s appeal.
  • Bailey v R&R Plant (Peterborough) Ltd [2011] All ER (D) 03 (Sep) (EAT):  Alex successfully argued a novel point of law concerning the interpretation of retirement legislation, in a case which attracted considerable practitioner comment and was subsequently upheld by the Court of Appeal.
  • London Borough of Redbridge v Idris UKEAT/007/13/DM:  Having been instructed at short notice, Alex successfully resisted an appeal brought against a claimant who had represented himself at trial and had obtained a substantial judgment.
Offshore & International

Offshore & International


Alex has in recent years been involved in litigation or investigative matters involving the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man, Mauritius, the Middle East and the Far East. He has assisted Her Majesty’s Attorney General of the Isle of Man with three major criminal fraud, money laundering and related offences prosecutions (including acting as stand-in junior in a Privy Council matter). He has also been appointed as an ad hoc consultant to assist an internationally-recognised offshore firm in carrying out an eighteen-month financial regulatory investigation in respect of a third party, and also to assist in carrying out corporate supervisory visits on behalf of an offshore regulator. In both instances Alex has acquired extensive experience of international AML, CFT and sanctions regulatory systems, and of corporate systems and defences concerning those areas. Separately, Alex has also assisted in investigating an overseas matter involving multiple homicides. Alex has a fine eye for detail which lends itself in particular to investigative matters, and is willing to consider instructions concerning any part of the world and to undertake any requisite travel.

Offshore & International Cases


  • Played a key role in a major eighteen-month investigation into regulatory AML / CFT and sanctions compliance in respect of a third party. The subject matter had been global in scope and spanned a number of years, therefore involving a vast array of documents as well as transcripts of live interviews.
  • Carrying out AML / CFT compliance supervisory visits on behalf of an offshore regulator.
  • Assisting with a highly confidential offshore investigation into multiple homicides.
  • Acting as disclosure junior and junior respectively in two major fraud / breach of trust / proceeds of crime prosecutions brought by the Isle of Man authorities against trust and corporate service providers.
  • Acting as stand-in junior in the preparation of the response to a Privy Council appeal (Holt v Isle of Man Attorney General). Alex was extensively involved in liaising with leading counsel and the opposition concerning the drafting of material which was put before the Privy Council.
Personal Injury

Personal Injury


Alex is an experienced personal injury practitioner who has conducted serious work in his own right, including fatal accident claims, as well as assisting more senior members of the team in preparing and quantifying cases concerning catastrophic lifelong injuries. Alex has appeared for claimants and defendants in the High Court as well as the County Court in both fast- and multi-track claims. His cases have involved road traffic accidents, claims under the Highways Act, Occupiers’ Liability Act and Fatal Accidents Act, and a variety of employers’ liability claims. Whilst he also does a considerable amount of claimant work, Alex is one of a small number of members of the 7BR team who is an approved ‘panel’ counsel for one of the UK’s biggest high street retailers, and has also been instructed by motor insurers to act in claims involving alleged fraudulent road traffic accidents. He is willing to consider instructions on a conditional fee basis.

Fraudulent Claims

Fraudulent Claims


Alex has been instructed in several road traffic cases where the defendant has alleged or suspected the claim to have been fraudulent. Instructions in this field have come both from claimants seeking to rebut such allegations, and from defendants (in particular motor insurers) seeking to defeat the claim at trial. In a recent multi-track trial in the Central London County Court, Alex successfully defended a claim where the judge found the claimant (and his alleged ‘independent’ witness) to be fraudulent. In the Oxford County Court, Alex was instructed by a defendant in a six-party multi-track road traffic ‘pile up’ case, where the lead claimant had been accused of having induced the accident, and the claimant’s solicitors were subsequently pursued for costs for having continued the claim even after the claimant had ceased to provide instructions. As a common law practitioner with considerable experience of criminal practice, Alex is also able to bring his skills from that practice to bear in cases of alleged civil fraud. In particular, Alex has detailed knowledge of police disclosure and accident reports (particularly useful where there are linked criminal proceedings for dangerous or careless driving), as well as being adept at robust cross-examination.

Personal Injury Cases


  • Advising on damages for dependency for a young child whose father was killed in a road traffic accident, and securing a High Court approval of the ensuing settlement.
  • Securing a favorable settlement for an injured self-employed carpenter whose pleaded damages exceeded £50,000.
  • Winning a contested liability trial for a schoolgirl injured while horse-riding by a collision with an overtaking lorry.
  • Attending a settlement approval hearing on behalf of a defendant insurer in a catastrophic injury claim valued in excess of £5 million.
  • Acting for a defendant insurer in a multi-track road traffic case at trial, where the circuit judge found the claimant and his alleged ‘independent’ witness to be fraudulent.
  • Advising an elderly lady who slipped on spilled paint in a department store, where the defendant subsequently settled her claim on favorable terms despite an initial denial of liability.
  • Advising a man who slipped on ice in a garden centre.
  • Advising a cleaner who subsequently obtained a favorable settlement from her employer for an injury she sustained while lifting a rubbish bin.
  • Acting for a leading national retailer in defending a number of claims brought by employees and customers for injuries sustained on store premises.

How to get in touch


For more information please contact our clerks by calling +44 (0) 20 7242 3555 or by email.

Privacy Notice


Alex is committed to protecting and respecting the privacy of individuals. In order to provide legal services, including advice and representation services, Alex needs to process personal data. This will include clients’ personal data and the personal data of others who feature in the course of any matter upon which he is instructed.

Alex will process personal data in accordance with his Privacy Policy.

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