Sean Adams

Sean Adams is a commercial disputes partner, based in Birmingham. He has a broad commercial practice, with significant experience within the automotive and financial services sectors.

Sean focuses on corporate and commercial disputes for a wide variety of clients. Those disputes routinely include breach of contract claims, tort and negligence claims, post-M&A / acquisition disputes, investor and shareholder disputes, and serious and complex fraud claims. He also has significant experience handling supply chain disputes (across a number of sectors) and assisting clients in seeking or responding to applications for urgent injunctive relief. Sean also acts for clients in relation to public procurement claims and judicial review proceedings, and has a growing interest and practice dealing with FinTech disputes, particularly related to cryptoassets and blockchain technology.

Sean focuses on helping clients analyse risks and their legal options in order to resolve disputes with minimal impact on their ongoing business, whether through litigation, arbitration, expert determination or alternative dispute resolution. Although disputes and disagreements are an inevitable part of corporate life, Sean's aim is to help clients obtain an efficient and cost-effective resolution which limits disruption to their underlying business where possible. When formal proceedings are required, as they often are, Sean is well-versed in the associated tactical and procedural requirements and has experience in supporting clients throughout the process, whether before the English Courts or international arbitral tribunals, deploying an experienced team to secure the client's desired objective.

Sean represents a broad range of clients, based in both the UK and internationally, including private individuals, SMEs and multinational corporations, across a number of different industry sectors. Sean also regularly represents manufacturers and Tier 1 suppliers in the automotive sector, and large banking, asset management and private equity clients in the financial services sector. Sean is a member of the Gowling WLG Nordic desk (with a focus on Finland and Iceland), participating in regular trips to the region, and is a member of the IBA (with a focus on the litigation forum).

Sean's key focus is on ensuring that he provides the highest levels of service to his clients. The fact that there are always interesting and unique aspects to every case, which need to be analysed to assess the potential impact on a particular client's business and devise the best way to proceed, is what keeps him constantly engaged and excited about working in this area.

Experience includes:

  • Acting for multiple defendants in successfully defending a high-profile and multi-faceted claim (seeking damages in excess of £100 million) including allegations of fraudulent misrepresentation, conspiracy, unlawful interference with economic interests, intimidation and blackmail.
  • Acting for automotive manufacturers in relation to supply chain disputes with Tier 1 and Tier 2 suppliers, including injunctive relief and urgent action to secure continued critical supply of parts required to keep production lines running.
  • Acting for private equity clients in relation to various high-value claims arising from breaches of warranty post-acquisition.
  • Acting for a large listed company in relation to an expert determination for the recovery of damages from a logistics supplier.
  • Acting for a charitable body in relation to its defence of a high value, and high profile, public procurement challenge relating to a contract for the long-term provision of services in the entertainment and events sector.
  • Acting for car manufacturers in relation to various disputes with dealers in their networks, in particular around termination rights and litigation options.
  • Acting for a client in the energy sector in relation to litigation and expert determination disputes arising out of a share purchase agreement.
  • Acting for a financial services client in relation to various disputes (including the enforcement of security and recovery of unpaid sums) and regulatory matters.
  • Acting for various claimants in connection with the recovery of stolen cryptoassets.

Career & Recognition

Filter timeline:
  • 2022

    • Career
      May 2022
      Gowling WLG (UK), partner
  • 2019

    • Career
      July 2019
      Gowling WLG (UK), principal associate
  • 2016

    • Career
      July 2016
      Gowling WLG (UK) LLP, senior associate
    • Career
       2016
      Gowling WLG (UK) LLP, associate
  • 2015

    • Career
       2015
      Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co, associate
  • 2014

    • Education
       2014
      Pembroke College, University of Cambridge, Law - M.A. (Cantab)
  • 2013

    • Qualifications (Year of Call/Admission, etc.)
       2013
      Qualified, Solicitor of England & Wales
    • Career
       2013
      Kirkland & Ellis International LLP, associate
  • 2011

    • Career
       2011
      Kirkland & Ellis International LLP, trainee solicitor
  • 2010

    • Education
       2010
      BPP Law School, London, Legal Practice Course (Distinction)
  • 2007

    • Education
       2007
      Pembroke College, University of Cambridge, Law - B.A. with Honours (2:1)