Stephen Boyd

Call: 1977

A graduate in Linguistic and International Studies (comprising Russian, Swedish and Law), Stephen pursued a career in commerce, working for international trading companies in Hong Kong and South Africa, before commencing practice at the Bar.

Stephen specialises in litigation concerning contentious trusts and probate, property, landlord and tenant, contracts and professional negligence. By temperament, and through training and experience as a mediator, Stephen is patient, has good people skills and the ability to build rapport with clients. Approachable and down to earth, Stephen brings his business experience to legal problems, giving advice that is commercial, accessible and practical.

He is an ACTAPS registered contentious trust and probate specialist.

He accepts instructions under the Bar’s Public Access Scheme.

Stephen has been a CEDR accredited mediator for over 17 years and is a CEDR Mediation panel member.

He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (FCIArb) and is a CEDR Arbitration Panel Member. He is also on CEDR’s panel of adjudicators dealing with consumer complaints against surveyors.

He is a member of the Chancery, Property and Commercial Bar Associations.

  • ADR and Mediation

    Stephen has been lead mediator in 46 mediations. and is on CEDR’s mediation panel. Please see Stephen’s mediation cv here. Stephen is happy to carry out virtual mediations over Zoom.

  • Arbitration

    Stephen is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and has been the sole arbitrator in 66 documents only arbitrations, mainly concerning claims against travel companies arising out of package holidays. He is on both the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators’ Business Arbitration Scheme panel and CEDR’s arbitration panel.


  • Banking

    Stephen has experience in dealing with claims concerning guarantees, documentary credits, mortgages and consumer credit. His most recent case in this field was Goldhill Finance Limited v Berry [2018] PLSCS 184. HHJ Monty QC held that in taking possession pursuant to its common law rights, despite an order suspending a warrant for possession, the mortgagee had rendered its relationship with the mortgagor unfair.


  • Commercial

    Having worked for international trading companies, Stephen is particularly interested in contractual disputes. In Smuts v Pearson, he acted for the successful claimants in the trial of a preliminary issue to determine whether they made the contract to sell their business to the defendant or the defendant’s company, which had gone into liquidation.

    He acted for the successful buyer in an arbitration concerning a shipment of prawns from India and the successful defendant in a trial concerning a joint venture to purchase vehicles from the USAF that had been used for transporting cruise missiles.

  • Company and Partnership

    Stephen has dealt with a number of partnership disputes between GPs, surgeons, accountants, insurance brokers and solicitors.


  • Landlord and Tenant

    Stephen is experienced in both commercial and residential landlord and tenant, particularly possession, forfeiture, renewal of commercial leases under the 1954 Act and disrepair.

  • Media and Entertainment

    Stephen has a postgraduate certificate in Sports Law from King’s College London and has co-written the chapter on Image Rights in four editions of Sport: Law and Practice, edited by Lewis and Taylor. He has acted for a boxing world champion and a famous former ‘page 3’ model.

  • Professional Negligence

    Stephen has experience of dealing with cases involving the negligence of solicitors, surveyors and accountants; see the references to the Court of Appeal cases of Littlewood v Radford [2010] 1 P & CR 18 and Dudarec v Andrews [2006] 1 WLR 3002 .

    He is on CEDR’s adjudication panel dealing with RICS referred complaints against surveyors.

  • Real Property

    Stephen has experience of dealing with easements, party wall disputes, nuisance, trespass and fraud.  For example, in Gill v Gill, he appeared for the claimant who successfully sued her siblings for conspiracy to forge her signature on a TR1 transferring title to her brother and in Dawoodi v Zafrani [2015] EWHC 3168 (TCC) for the claimant who successfully sued the defendant developer for damages in trespass and nuisance.

  • Trusts, Probate & Estates

    Stephen is an ACTAPS registered contentious trust and probate specialist.

    In Watts v Watts [2014] WTLR 1781, Stephen appeared for the claimant who successfully sued his brother for breach of trust, undue influence and deceit.

    In Howard v Howard-Lawson [2012] EWHC 3258 (Ch) (and on appeal [2013] EWCA Civ 654) Stephen appeared for the defendant who successfully resisted his son’s claim that he committed multiple breaches of trust and exercised undue influence over him in connection with a variation of a trust.

  • Notable Cases

    Routledge v Routledge 16/8/21 Chancery Division Deputy Master McQuail

    Application for removal of a co-executor and counter-application for the appointment of an independent professional personal representative.

    Ania v Ania 10/8/21 County Court at Central London HHJ Gerald

    Claim for an interest in a property relying on constructive trust and proprietary estoppel principles, reasonable financial provision under the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 and damages for unlawful eviction.

    In the Matter of the Estate of Peter Henry Wales [2020] EWHC 1979 (Ch)
    17/7/20 Master Teverson
    By his will, the deceased gave his residuary estate to “such all of my nephew’s and niece’s children”. At the date of his death, the deceased had two blood nephews and two blood nieces. He also had three nephews by marriage and one niece by marriage. The issue for determination was whether the estate fell to be divided between the blood relatives alone or also the nephews and niece by affinity. It was held that in the light of the surrounding circumstances, applying Marley v Rawlings [2015] AC 129 and Re Daoust [1944] 1 All ER 443, and considering the Canadian case of Re Holmes (2007) BCSC 51, the deceased intended to include nephews and nieces by affinity as well as by consanguinity.

    Stephen Boyd acted for the nephews and nieces by affinity.


    Goldhill Finance Limited v Cynthia Berry
    26/10/18 HHJ Simon Monty QC, County Court at Central London
    Once proceedings had been issued, but the mortgagor had obtained an order suspending a warrant for possession, the mortgagee was not permitted to take possession relying on its Common Law rights.  Its having done so in such circumstances rendered the relationship unfair under the Consumer Credit Act.
    Stephen Boyd acted for the mortgagor.

    Roshan v Bharj [2017] EWHC 176 (CH) [2017] 4 W.L.R. 46
    13/2/17  Mr Simon Monty QC sitting as a Deputy High Court Judge
    The claimant issued proceedings in August 2016 seeking an order that judgment delivered by Recorder Monty QC in February 2015 in the County Court sitting at Central London determining the beneficial interests in a property used a Sikh Temple be set aside on the grounds that the evidence given at trial by both parties had been fraudulent. The claimant had not been a party to the earlier proceedings, but claimed to represent the members of the Temple who, it was alleged, were the true owners under a charitable purposes trust.

    Stephen Boyd appeared for the defendants who successfully applied for reverse summary judgment and/or an order that the claim be struck out as an abuse of process

    Gill v Gill 30/10/15 CLCC (HHJ Gerald)
    Appeared for the Claimant who successfully sued her siblings for conspiracy to forge her signature on a TR1 transferring title to her brother

    Edray Ltd v Canning [2015] 5 Costs L.R. 877 3/6/15 High Court, Stephen Jourdan QC sitting as a deputy High Court Judge
    Estoppel by convention prevented a debtor from complaining about defective service of a bill of costs and notice of commencement where both parties had mistakenly assumed that service had been effective and proceeded on that basis.

    Dawoodi v Zafrani 22/01/15 TCC List at Central London, HHJ Bailey
    Appeared for the claimant who successfully sued the defendant developer for damages in trespass and nuisance. The claimant’s garden subsided as a result of the negligence of the defendant’s contractors, who had demolished the adjacent house and excavated a basement for a new house without supporting the claimant’s land and had erected scaffolding on the claimant’s land without his consent.

    Grace Zhang v Howard Kennedy FSI LLP 11/09/2014
    Appeared for the Claimant who succeeded in her contentions that the Defendant’s bills were not interim statute bills and that special circumstances existed under s.70 of the Solicitors Act 1974.

    Watts v Watts [2014] WTLR 1781 21/8/14 (Ch) (Nicholas Strauss QC sitting as a deputy High Court Judge)
    Appeared for the claimant who successfully sued his brother for breach of trust, undue influence and deceit, being awarded £1.5m.

    Howard v Howard-Lawson [2012] EWHC 3258 (Ch) 20/11/12 (Norris J)
    Appeared for the defendant who sucessfully resisted his son’s claim that he committed multiple breaches of trust and exercised undue influence over him in connection with a variation of trust.

    Haghighat v Haghighat 14/11/12 Chancery List, CLCC (HHJ Marshall QC)
    Appeared for the claimant who sucessfully claimed that a property in the name of her son, the defendant, was held for her on a resulting trust or that it was a gift procured by his undue influence.

    Howard v Howard-Lawson Court of Appeal [2012] EWCA Civ 6 [2012] 3 ALLER 60 [2012] WTLR 617
    Appeared as junior counsel for the successful respondent. Upon its true construction, the respondent had complied with a ‘name and arms clause’ in a will and had not forfeited his life interest.

    Rajvel Construction Ltd v Bestville Properties Ltd [2012] ECWA Civ 587
    A judge has not erred in making an order for costs personally against a director in connection with a renewed application for security for costs made in proceedings commenced by his insolvent company.  The costs of the renewed application were entirely due to the director’s failure to make full and frank disclosure of personal assets in his witness statement produced at the original security for costs hearing, as a result of which the court had been misled.

    Rajvel Construction Ltd v Bestville Properties Limited (Coulson J) 7/9/11, LTL AC9700876
    In appropriate circumstances the court could make a freezing injunction to support or assist with the operation of the rules relating to security for costs.

    Mustafa v Zafrani
     (2011) (Ramsay J)
    Appeared for the claimants who obtained an interlocutory injunction restraining the defendant, the owner of an adjacent property, from carrying out any works affecting the party wall until it had been adequately propped and party wall surveyors had approved the works to be carried out to it.

    Maloney v Gosal LVT 4/11/10 Ref No. LON/OOAU/OFR/2010/002
    Appeared for the successful applicants: an increase in the market value of a property was not a change of circumstances within the meaning of subsection 12(7) of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987.

    Left Hook Ltd v Trustees of the Islington Boys’ Club (2010) (Mann J)
    Appeared for the claimant company which obtained an interim injunction preventing the Defendant from interfering with its rights of occupation of the relevant premises, pending a hearing to determine whether it has a lease or a license thereof, and whether in purporting to terminate such rights, the Defendant had acted in accordance with its constitution.

    Hembry v Squirrel Films Distribution Limited Chancery List, CLCC (HHJ Marshall QC) 20/5/10
    Trial considering whether the occupants of a property were simply tenants or had an irrevocable license protected by proprietary estoppel and/or a constructive trust.

    Maloney v Gosal, Chancery List, CLCC (HHJ Cowell) 24/3/10
    Appeared for the successful claimants in a trial to determine whether the court should exercise its discretion under s.19(1) of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987 to order the defendant freeholder to sell a house converted into three flats to the Claimants, qualifying tenants, pursuant to s.12B of the Act.

    Smuts v Pearson [2010] EWHC 814 (QB), (Sharp J) 11/3/10
    Appeared for the successful claimants in the trial of a preliminary issue to determine whether they made the contract to sell their business to the defendant or the defendant’s company, which had gone into liquidation.

    Squirrel Films Distribution Limited v SPP Opportunities Fund LLP [2010] EWHC 706 (Ch) (Lewison J) 5/3/10
    The strength of the underlying challenge to an arbitral award in respect of a rent review under s.68 of the 1996 Act for serious irregularity was of critical importance.

    Littlewood v Radford CA (2010) 1 P& CR 18
    Appeared for the successful appellant.  Negligent surveyor failed to remind a client of the need to apply to the LVT within 6 months of the receipt of a counter notice in order to keep her enfranchisement claim alive.  Although a professional is obliged in certain circumstances to remind a client of his previous advice as to hazards, there is no general principle that he is under a duty to keep repeating that advice.

    William Old International Limited v Arya Ch.D (2009) 2 P & CR 20
    Appeared for the successful defendants.  An express easement in a transfer of a freehold, granting the transferee the right to free passage of services through service media and the right to lay further service media, did not oblige the transferor, or its successor in title, to take the positive step of entering into a separate deed of easement with the electricity provider, despite the fact that the latter would only provide electricity on execution of such a deed.  Further, the refusal of the transferor to enter such a deed was not a derogation from grant.

    Levi v Levi Ch.D (Geoffrey Vos QC) (2008) 2 P&CR DG1
    The detriment required for the establishment of a constructive trust did not need to be great where there was an express agreement, and the making of a loan at an agreed rate could be regarded as sufficient detriment.

    Dudarec v Andrews CA [2006] 1 WLR 3002
    Appeared for the successful appellant.  Where evidence became available for the first time after the date of the notional trial (the original proceedings having been struck out as the result of the respondent solicitors’ negligence in failing to prosecute the claim) in an action seeking to assess damages for the lost chance, unless the evidence related to some entirely new matter which could not have been known about at the date of the notional trial, the facts as they turned out to be should be taken into account by the judge dealing with the professional negligence action.

    Walker v Walker [2005] EWHC 1095] HHJ Rich QC sitting as a Deputy Judge of the High Court
    Claim by the administratrix of the estate of her late father for possession of the family home against her sister.

    Money v Westholme Investments Ltd [2003] ECWA Civ 1659 (2003) 147 SJLB 357
    Vendor was entitled to recover from the purchaser a deposit it had been paid in compliance with a freeholder’s demand under paragraph 2 schedule 2  Leasehold Reform (Collective Enfranchisement and Lease Renewal) Regulations 1993 SI 1993/2407, where the purchaser had received the benefit of the deposit by reduction in the purchase price of an extended lease.

    Fuller v Happy Shopper Markets Ltd [2001] 1 WLR 1681; [2001] 2 Lloyd’s Rep 49; [2001] 2EGLR 32 (Lightman J)
    A right of restitution arose immediately following overpayment. There was no requirement for the service of a demand for repayment other than in cases involving rescission. A landlord intending to levy distress should ensure that a tenant had no claims which could be offset against the outstanding rent by way of equitable set off.

    Aylwen v Takla CA 6/4/00 Lawtel AC8600715
    Claim to possessory title of a box room in a block of flats.

    Lansdowne Tutors Ltd v Younger (No 1) (2000) CA 79 P&CR D36
    Issues concerning surrender of commercial premises.

    Re Oriental Gas Co Ltd  [1999] B.C.C 237; [2000] 1 B.C.L.C. 209 (Ferris J)
    In the absence of express authority on the point, a respondent’s right to apply to strike out, on the grounds of lack of authority, a petition brought pursuant to the Companies Act 1985 s.459 alleging unfairly prejudicial conduct would not be lost simply because the respondent had delayed in making the application. While applications to strike out should be made as promptly as possible, it was not sensible to disregard the possibility of saving the time and cost involved in a trial merely to punish the respondent for his tardiness

    Sparkle Properties Ltd v Residential Developments Ltd[1998] EG 68 (CS) Ian Hunter QC
    An appeal concerning the powers and functions of a manager appointed by the court under s.24 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987.  It was contended the the manager did not have to power to re-let a flat within the demised property which did not have planning permission or receive remuneration in connection with the flat.

    Cooper v Fearnley [1997] B.P.I.R. 20 (Aldous J)
    It was not appropriate to make an interim order under the Insolvency Act 1986 s.252 to enable a debtor facing a bankruptcy petition to put a proposal for a voluntary arrangement to the creditors where the terms of the voluntary arrangement were purely speculative and without substance such that they could not be seriously considered by the creditors

    Northways Flats Management Co (Camden) v Wimpey Pension Trustees  [1992] 2 EGLR 42   Court of Appeal
    Where a lease contains a clause stating that before carrying out major repairs the landlord will submit estimates to the tenant for consideration, and the landlord fails to do so, the tenant is not obliged to pay for the repairs.

  • Civil Mediation Council
  • CEDR
  • CMCR