Garbhan Shanks

Garbhan Shanks

Solicitor – admitted 2002

"Garbhan Shanks and associate Naomi Hall are very capable in this field."
Legal 500 2020

"Garbhan Shanks is hands on and always directly involved. He is obviously experienced and gives calm, measured advice, even when the pressure is on."
Legal 500 2020

"The diligent and very personable Garbhan Shanks of Michelmores LLP is well regarded for his robust representation of policyholder clients."

"Garbhan Shanks and Harriet Chopra form a wonderful double act in the insurance sector – technically superb with client-facing skills that are second to none." – Legal 500 2019

"Garbhan Shanks is a very good manager of cases and has a good manner." – Chambers and Partner 2019

"Garbhan Shanks leads Michelmores LLP’s ‘impressive’ practice head and handles an array of coverage disputes, including credit risk and cyber cases."

"Excellent advice, which is of a consistently high standard and tailored to create practical solutions in an international setting."
Legal 500 2016

"Garbhan Shanks has ‘outstanding professionalism and legal knowledge'".
Legal 500 2015


Garbhan is a Partner in the Commercial Disputes department.

He is Head of Insurance and Reinsurance and the International Arbitration Group. His extensive experience includes acting for and against ultra high-net worth individuals, corporates, financial institutions, insurers and governments in the High Court, Court of Appeal and House of Lords and in numerous institutional and ad hoc arbitrations.     

Garbhan primarily acts for policyholders and their captives on insurance coverage issues in the financial services, pharmaceutical, energy, retail, manufacturing, construction, utilities and aviation sectors. He has advised on construction all-risks, product liability, professional indemnity, property, business interruption, D&O, employers' liability, corporate crime (1st and 3rd party) and cyber/privacy insurance cover. He also advises clients on their insurance programmes and policy wordings.

His practice additionally involves acting in reinsurance coverage disputes, which has ranged from US pollution losses in Wasa v Lexington to disputes over 9/11 World Trade Centre losses.

Outside the field of insurance, Garbhan has acted in a variety of heavy weight commercial disputes including professional negligence, misselling, civil fraud and defamation actions and has experience in group actions and complex procedural matters such as worldwide freezing orders and the enforcement of judgments and arbitral awards in the English courts and abroad. 

His arbitration practice acts mainly in high value commercial disputes in the power and oil & gas sectors. 

Garbhan has experience in litigating and arbitrating in relation to numerous foreign jurisdictions with a focus on Africa, Russia, the US and Pakistan. Garbhan has a diploma in French law and has supervised disputes in Francophile countries throughout his career. He recently acted for a Pakistani bank before the French Court of Appeal in a successful appeal against Crédit Agricole and Thales in counter-guarantee disputes relating to underlying contracts in the Yemen where "force majeure", alleged fraud and EU Sanction issues arose.

He is a member of British Insurance Law Association, AIRMIC, IRLA, AIDA, the Chartered Insurance Institute and the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.

Garbhan is named as a 'Leader in their field' in Chambers & Partners UK 2019 and has been ranked in Legal 500 for many years.

Recent Experience

  • Acted for Munnelly Support Services Limited in a High Court Claim brought against Liberty and ACE in 2017 relating to a coverage dispute between the respective PI and EL insurance covers.
  • Successfully defended Aviva Canada Inc. in a reinsurance High Court claim by Minster Insurance Company, and continues to act for Aviva Canada in other reinsurance claims involving issues on the scope of follow settlement clauses and the recoverability of IBNR and Schemes of Arrangement under English law.
  • Acted for a US power company in a property damage/business interruption coverage dispute for losses relating to a damaged gas turbine in the Middle East.
  • Advised the Board of Directors of a UK PLC on its D&O liability cover.
  • Advising an NHS Trust in its claim under the Third Party (Rights Against Insurers) Act 1930 against the PI insurers of an IT contractor.
  • Acted for an Asian manufacturer in a business interruption loss coverage dispute arising out of a fire and prolonged electricity power outage causing solidification in the machines. 

Reported cases

Recent News

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