Top 10 Influential Restructuring/Insolvency Lawyers in Australia for 2023

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Australia’s legal industry is marked by a host of highly talented and skilled practitioners, particularly in the area of restructuring and insolvency. This niche within the legal arena demands not just solid legal expertise, but also a deep understanding of corporate finance, negotiations, and sometimes, crisis management. It is against this background that we place a spotlight on some of the key legal figures currently influencing the landscape of restructuring and insolvency in Australia. We profile ten standout lawyers who have consistently demonstrated excellence and innovation in their practice.

The individuals highlighted in this piece have garnered recognition for their handling of high-stakes, complex restructuring, and insolvency matters. From consequential corporate collapses and significant restructurings to diverse commercial disputes, these professionals have left an indelible mark on the Australian legal profession. They are not only technically proficient but also demonstrate a remarkable ability to navigate intricate financial situations, which makes them a vital asset to both corporate clients and fellow legal practitioners.

While their practices cover a vast expanse of commercial issues, each lawyer has made an impact in the restructuring and insolvency field, arguably one of the most complex areas of the law. They have established themselves as leaders within their respective firms and within the industry at large. The breadth of their practices goes beyond restructuring and insolvency, extending to related areas such as insurance law, intellectual property, and professional liability.

Shane Doyle KC

Noted as the leader of the Queensland Bar, Shane Doyle KC is a vital asset at the Level Twenty Seven Chambers. His practice spans the broad spectrum of disputes, with high recognition in the construction, insolvency, and general commercial arenas.

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Oren Bigos SC

With significant academic prowess coupled with extensive insolvency law expertise, Oren Bigos SC stands out at List A Barristers. Known for handling matters arising from some of Australia’s largest corporate failures, he is a regular face in state supreme, Federal and High Court proceedings.

Philip Crutchfield KC

Philip Crutchfield KC of Dever’s List has established a versatile practice where insolvency cases feature notably. His reach extends beyond insolvency, handling insurance, intellectual property, and taxation-related briefs among general commercial work.

David R. Sulan SC

A key figure at Banco Chambers, David Sulan SC appears frequently in insolvency-related cases as well as instances of various kinds of financial malpractice. His practice cuts across a wide commercial spectrum.

Justin Williams SC

Justin Williams SC is acclaimed for his work in the insolvency space, having been regularly instructed in large, complex restructurings. Not restricted to insolvency, he demonstrates skill in broader commercial litigation issues, especially those related to financial regulatory matters.

Ian Jackman SC

Renowned as one of the most powerful performers at the Sydney Bar, Ian Jackman SC’s practice encompasses general commercial, financial services, insurance, intellectual property, and taxation fields. He is identified as a key player in the insolvency sector, which forms a salient component of his work.

Robert Newlinds SC

A member of Banco Chambers, Robert Newlinds SC runs a diverse practice, highlighting restructuring and insolvency issues but also extending to high-profile commercial disputes and class actions.

Carl Möller SC

Acknowledged as a genuine corporate insolvency specialist at the Victorian Bar, Carl Möller SC of List A Barristers is admired both for his practice and teaching in this area.

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Vanessa Whittaker SC

At Banco Chambers, Vanessa Whittaker SC keeps a strong focus on insolvency issues, an interest that has lingered since her early legal days. Her practice includes the related arenas of bankruptcy, insurance law, and professional liability.

Michael Izzo SC

Recognized for his work in the insolvency sphere, Michael Izzo SC is lauded for his technical abilities, a firm grasp of financial complexities, and strong proficiency in schemes of arrangement.


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