Sue Ryan

With her time split equally between the London and Birmingham offices, Sue Ryan supports her construction and infrastructure-sector clients on the avoidance, management and ultimately resolution of their disputes. She has more than two decades experience of acting for contractors, employers, developers, investors and consultants. Sue is often instructed in relation to professional negligence claims for and against construction and engineering-related professionals.

Sue has extensive experience of adjudication, arbitration and litigation, in both the High Court and also the Court of Appeal, together with mediation, expert determination and conciliation.

Sue provides structured training on dispute avoidance and management to her clients and also provides contractual and risk management advice during the course of major projects in order to assist in their management and delivery.

She is a former elected member of the TECSA Committee, a Protocol Referee and is on the TECSA Adjudication panel.

Sue has experience in all of the major forms of contract together many bespoke contracts.


Clients say: "She is straightforward, succinct, able to ask the right questions and to provide clear advice and recommendations." (Chambers & Partners, 2018) and is one of the nine partners in our construction and engineering team "hugely respected group with a strong offering in both the contentious and non-contentious space" and "…they are the market leader with huge expertise on tap." (Chambers & Partners, 2018). Sue is a ranked Construction lawyer in both London and the West Midlands in Legal 500 2017. She was also a finalist in the European Women in Construction Women in Construction Law in 2017.

Cladding and Building/Fire Safety

Sue has been instructed on a significant number of cladding and fire safety disputes, including the Green Quarter project in Manchester. In this case, a Tier 1 Tribunal Decision was obtained by our client stating that the costs of remedial works could be passed onto the tenants, which in turn led to a frenzy of media interest and Sue successfully acted for the owner of the long leasehold reversionary interest in obtaining a settlement from the developer of the works. Sue acts for iQ Student Accommodation and Empiric Student Property on their respective portfolios of student accommodation in relation to building and fire safety claims.  She has claims both at pre-action stage and in High Court proceedings for contractors, developers and investors.

Highways Infrastructure

Sue has acted for contractors and contractor JVs in many high value disputes including for the contractor JV which built the M6 Toll (which included a trip to the Court of Appeal), disputes in relation to the M66 motorway and the A5 Glyn Bends on North Wales. She also acted for a contractor client in a long-running arbitration arising out of the construction of the M2 to Iwade extension.

Tunnelling and Engineering Infrastructure

Sue has been involved in a number of tunnelling and civil engineering disputes including acting for the successful party in the case of AE Yates Trenchless Solutions Ltd v Black & Veatch Ltd EWHC 3183 (TCC), [2009] CILL 2669, [2009] TCLR 4 and 124 Con LR 188 concerning horizontal directional drilling (HDD) and acting for the contractor in connection with a dispute arising out of the design of the Hastings Sewerage Tunnel in a claim against its design consultants.


Sue has acted for a national rail engineering contractor in relation to disputes arising out of rail and platform construction in the North East and the renovation of Victoria Station. She also acted for another long-standing contractor client in relation to rail works at Westfield's Stratford Shopping Mall, disputes with its HV electrical works sub-contractor on various projects, engineering issues during the construction of DLR and engineering works for LUL.


Sue has acted on a variety of PFI disputes including schools, hospitals, roads and leisure facilities.

Commercial and Industrial Buildings

Sue has acted for clients including developers, employers, contractors and designers in many high value disputes arising out of the construction of hotels, leisure facilities, retail developments, office renovation and extensions (including listed buildings). She acted for Volkswagen UK Limited in linked disputes arising out of the then largest Audi retail building in the world in West London.

Sue has acted for the developers and/or owners in large defects disputes arising out of defective design of foundations including acting for the successful party in Commercial Management (Investments) Ltd v Mitchell Design and Construct Ltd & Anor [2016] EWHC 76 (TCC)

Sue acted for the successful property owner in the first reported case BAE Systems Pension Funds Trustees Ltd v Bowmer and Kirkland Ltd [2017] EWHC 1200 (TCC) pursuant to the Third Party (Rights Against Insurers) Act 2010 and in the subsequent settlement of the dispute relating to defective design of the foundations of a large warehouse in Winsford.

Housing and Mixed Use Schemes

Sue has acted for contractor clients in disputes arising out of the construction of housing and mixed-use developments and is currently acting for the developer in relation to an entertainment-led mixed use commercial and housing development in South London.

Sue also acts for a number of social housing providers around the country in respect of defects claims (including building/fire safety defects).

International Arbitration

Sue acted in disputes arising out of the construction of La Chi Kok Viaduct in Hong Kong SAR, China.

Mandats clients