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Freshfields partner takes silk

Partner Will Thomas from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (‘Freshfields’) has been appointed Queen’s Counsel by Her Majesty the Queen on the advice of the Lord Chancellor, Robert Buckland QC MP, following consideration by the independent Queen's Counsel Selection Panel.

The award of Queen's Counsel (also known as silk) is for excellence in advocacy and is made to advocates who have rights of audience in the higher courts of England and Wales and who have demonstrated the competencies in the requisite framework to a standard of excellence. Will is one of only four arbitration specialists to be included among 116 silk appointments in this year’s list. He is the sixth member of the Freshfields international arbitration group to be appointed QC, alongside partners Nigel Blackaby QC, Ben Juratowitch QC, Nigel Rawding QC, Noah Rubins QC and Peter Turner QC.

“This is a great honour, but one that has been earned as much by my teams (both past and present) as by me. I’m hugely indebted to them, to my various mentors over the years and also to my clients. I’d also like to thank my family for their support and patience; this achievement is as much theirs as mine” said Will Thomas.

“Will’s appointment is very well deserved. It is a great recognition for him and more generally for the quality of our international arbitration offering in London” said Freshfields head of dispute resolution, Andrew Hart.

Will will formally take the QC title in March 2021 when the ceremony would normally be held at Westminster Hall, although this year’s ceremony is being postponed due to Covid-19.

Will specialises in international commercial arbitration, investment arbitration and public international law. He has particular expertise in the energy, telecoms and projects sectors, with a focus on disputes in the Middle East and Africa.

Will has acted as counsel and advocate in numerous institutional and ad hoc arbitral proceedings, including under ICC, LCIA, ICSID and UNCITRAL rules. He has also represented parties before both the International Court of Justice and the Iran-US Claims Tribunal. Alongside his disputes work, Will’s non-contentious practice includes advising on a wide variety of international law issues, as well as assisting clients with front-end risk management options on their international projects. Will’s clients include private multinationals, States and State entities. Will was previously based in Paris, where he was head of the arbitration group of an international law firm. He continues to spend significant time in our Paris office.

To read more about Will’s practice, see here.


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About Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP is a global law firm with a long track record of successfully advising the world's leading national and multinational corporations and financial institutions on ground breaking and business-critical challenges. Our team of more than 2,800 lawyers and other legal professionals delivers global results from our 28 offices worldwide. Our commitment, local and multinational expertise and business know-how means our clients can rely on us when it matters most.