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Adam Johnson QC


Adam is a partner and QC in the Disputes Division in our London office.  He has a broad commercial advocacy practice with a particular focus on cross-border litigation and international arbitration.



Adam has acted in a number of the most important commercial disputes of the last 30 years.  Major clients during that time have included Arthur Andersen (UK) (in connection with a variety of matters following the collapse of Enron), the United States Securities & Exchange Commission (in connection with overseas enforcement proceedings in the wake of the Aremisoft scandal), and Royal Bank of Scotland (in connection with regulatory issues and litigation arising out of its 2008 Rights Issue).  
Adam has been described as “highly regarded for large-scale litigation and arbitration”, as having “a cerebral style while always being utterly user-friendly”, and as "very pragmatic and calm".  He is recognised in the 2018 Legal 500 (both for Commercial Litigation and Banking Litigation), has been listed consistently in Who’s Who Legal in the Litigation category, and has recently been recognised as an "Acritas Star – independently rated lawyer".  
Adam’s recent experience includes acting:
  • for Royal Bank of Scotland in applications concerning the proper law for determining the scope of legal advice privilege in English litigation (In re the RBS Rights Issue Litigation [2016] EWHC 3161 (Ch))
  • for companies in the Timis Mining Group, in applications for a stay of proceedings and for an anti-suit injunction in light of parallel actions in Sierra Leone (Dawnus Sierra Leone Ltd v. Timis Mining Corp Ltd & Anor [2016] EWHC 236 (TCC))
  • for companies in the Pilkington Group in proceedings in the Competition Appeal Tribunal arising out of the "car-glass cartel", concerning determination of the applicable law for limitation purposes (Peugeot Citroen & Ors v. Pilkington Group Limited & Ors [2016] CAT 14)
  • for Bill Kenwright Ltd in successfully resisting applications to stay English proceedings in favour of litigation in Abu Dhabi (Bill Kenwright Ltd v. Flash Entertainment FZ LLC [2016] EWHC 1951 (QB))
  • for JKX Oil & Gas Plc in successfully defending a challenge to an Award made under the UK-Ukraine Bilateral Investment Treaty (Ukraine v. JKX Oil & Gas Plc, Commercial Court, October 2017 (judgment confidential))
  • for Telecom of Kosovo in successfully defending a challenge to an ICC Award under ss67 and 68 Arbitration Act 1996 (Telecom of Kosovo JSC v. LLC [2017] EWHC 1326 (Comm))
  • for a major energy company in ICC proceedings in Paris relating to a long term gas supply contract
  • for a major energy company in LCIA proceedings in London concerning sale of a Russian shipping business 
  • pro bono for the Appellants in Mohamed v. Abdelmamoud & Ors [2018] EWCA Civ. 879 (standing to set aside default judgment; civil procedure; derivative action)



Adam graduated with a First Class degree in Law from the University of Cambridge in 1987.  He joined the Firm as an Articled Clerk in 1988 and became a partner in 1997. He was appointed Queen's Counsel in 2017 and was made a Deputy High Court Judge in 2018. He is a member of the Firm's Advocacy Group.