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Julian Kenny QC

Julian Kenny has been in practice at 20 Essex Street since 1998. He specialises in commercial law.

He is recommended in 2017 Legal 500 as a leading QC in:

  • international arbitration
  • insurance and reinsurance
  • shipping
  • commodities


and by the 2018 Chambers & Partners Guide as a leading QC in:

  • shipping and commodities
  • banking and finance

He is one of the authors of Time Charters, 7th Edn.


  • Banking
  • Shipping & Commodities
  • Insurance
  • Conflicts/Jurisdiction
  • Arbitration

Principal Cases: 


Lehman Brothers International v Lehman Brothers Finance (2012) (Briggs J) - whether the close-out provisions of the ISDA Master Agreement allowed the claimant to bring into account the loss of a side agreement with the defendant following the insolvency of the Lehman group.

Haugesund v Depfa [2012] 2 WLR 199 (CA) - whether a commercial bank was entitled to restitution of money paid to a Norwegian local authority under a void swap agreement in circumstances where the money had subsequently been lost in failed investments.

Region of Lombardy v Merrill Lynch and UBS (on going) - whether the banks mis-sold derivative products to the Region.

Shipping & Commodities

Transgrain v Yangtze Navigation [2017] 2 Lloyd’s Rep 212 – decision of Teare J on the allocation of ‘no fault’ losses under the Interclub Agreement 1996.

The Res Cogitans [2016] AC 1034 – Supreme Court decision on the question whether a bunker sale agreement was a contract of sale within the Sale of Goods Act 1979.

IMS v Capital Oil [2016] 2 CLC 307 – decision of Popplewell J on whether an applicant could make a second challenge to jurisdiction.

The Rewa [2012] Lloyd's Rep. Plus 28 - dealing with the construction of the Saleform 93 and whether a ship being sold had to be delivered with documents making her eligible for trading.

The Triton Lark [2012] Lloyd's Rep. Plus 18 - dealing with the construction of the Conwartime 1993 clause and the question whether a time-chartered owner could refuse an order to sail through the Gulf of Aden because of the risk from pirates.

The Mary Nour [2008] 2 Lloyd's Rep. 636 - dealing with the circumstances in which a commodity contract is frustrated when a seller's source of supply fails.

Antiparos [2008] 2 Lloyd's Rep. 237 - whether charterers were obliged to give indemnify owners against losses caused by amendments to the charterers' voyage orders under the Asbatankvoy form.


La Reunion Aerienne v ANDI (on going) - dealing with aggregation of losses arising from 9/11 attacks, following settlement of property claims.

No.1 Dae Bu [2006] Lloyd's Rep. IR 860 - whether the Court should grant negative declaratory relief; whether the assured was in breach of class warranties.


Electrim v Vivendi [2009] 1 Lloyd's Rep. 59 (CA) - whether the Court properly exercised its equitable jurisdiction to restrain vexatious proceedings in the US.

The Katarina [2010] 1 Lloyd's Rep 449 - dealing with the circumstances in which the Court should extend the validity of a claim form served overseas.


The Dimitris L [2012] Lloyd's Rep Plus 25 - dealing with the conditions under which the High Court can direct arbitrators to clarify their Award.

Syska v Vivendi [2008] 2 Lloyd's Rep. 636 (CA) - whether an arbitral tribunal could be deprived of jurisdiction by a foreign statute which nullified the arbitration agreement.

Education and Career: 

At Magdalen College, Oxford, he was awarded a 1st Class degree in English Literature. At City University, he received the Diploma in Law with Distinction, winning the Council of Legal Education prize for the highest marks in the year. At the Inns of Court School of Law, he passed the BVC with the grade of 'outstanding'. He was the Atkin Senior Scholar at Gray's Inn and won the Mackaskie prize.


"He is user-friendly and produces work of considerable intellectual firepower in an understated but persuasive manner." (Chambers & Partners UK 2018, Banking & Finance)

"One of the brightest people I know." (Chambers & Partners UK Bar 2018, Shipping & Commodities)

"Highly rated for ISDA-related disputes." (Legal 500 2017, Banking & Finance)

"An up-and-coming silk with strong arbitration expertise." (Legal 500 2017, International Arbitration - Counsel)

"Extremely charming and very good on high-value disputes, and his written advice is some of the best around." (Legal 500 2017, Commodities)

"Recommended for marine insurance work." (Legal 500 2017, Insurance & Reinsurance)

"Very highly rated." (Legal 500 2017, Shipping)

"He is intellectually very able, calm, measured and has a good sense of humour." (Chambers & Partners 2017, Banking & Finance)

"He is very witty and gets the Tribunal laughing along with him, very effective at steering them along the way he wants to go." (Chambers & Partners 2017, Shipping & Commodities)

"He has a very strong track record in ISDA-related disputes." (Legal 500 2016, Banking & Finance)

"Very quick-witted, and always clear and incisive in his advice." (Legal 500 2016, Commodities)

"He has a strong presence in the insurance sector." (Legal 500 2016, Insurance & Reinsurance)

"A brilliant advocate." (Legal 500 2016, Shipping)

"He's cerebral, thoughtful and measured." (Chambers & Partners 2016, Banking & Finance) 

"Very good and calm. He approaches cases well." (Chambers & Partners 2016, Shipping & Commodities)

"He is thoughtful, thorough and user-friendly." (Chambers & Partners 2015, Banking & Finance)

"He distils issues into succinct points." (Chambers & Partners 2015, Shipping & Commodities)

"Strong experience in major ship financing disputes." (Legal 500 2015, Banking & Finance)

"At top player." (Legal 500 2015, Insurance & Reinsurance)

"A proper star; he always produces excellent work." (Legal 500 2015, Commodities)

"Completely at home in banking and finance matters, grasping complex structures instantly." (Legal 500 2014, Banking & Finance)

"A very elegant advocate and a real star." (Legal 500 2014, Commodities)

"Hugely talented." (Legal 500 2015, Shipping)

"Very experienced" (Legal 500 2014, Insurance & Reinsurance)

"Excellent technical ability" (Legal 500 2014, Shipping)

"Ever energetic" - (Chambers & Partners 2012, Insurance)

"absolutely top-flight" ... "astute and hard-working" ... "always on the ball" (Chambers & Partners 2012, Shipping & Commodities)

"a great details man who is well on top of the more intricate legal arguments"  (Legal 500 2011, Shipping)

"a very good eye for how an argument is progressing" (Legal 500 2011, Commodities)

"continues to impress" (Chambers & Partners 2012, International Arbitration)

"a real star at the senior junior end" - (Legal 500 2011, International Arbitration)

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