Boies Schiller takes Bingham litigator for London launch

Boies Schiller & Flexner has hired Bingham McCutchen litigation partner Natasha Harrison to head the firm’s London office.

Harrison, who is expected to move over in November, will sit as the managing partner of Boies Schiller’s first base outside the US.

Having previously led Bingham’s litigation team in London, Harrison acts on behalf of hedge funds and investment banks in complex debt-related litigation and arbitration, and advises clients on restructuring, treaty claims, business disputes and structured products.

Her representative experience includes acting on behalf of the bondholders of the three collapsed Icelandic banks – Landsbanki, Kaupthing and Glitnir -in the second largest insolvency in the world.

Boies Schiller’s launch has been led by New York-based partner Duane Loft, who is understood to be spending the rest of 2013 in London.

Legal Week first reported the firm was looking to launch in London in July or August this year.

The firm plans to build a team of associates around Harrison by the end of the year, though final headcount has yet to be decided.

Boies Schiller’s City launch is partly linked with a large caseload for key client Barclays, which instructed the firm to defend it against Libor-related class actions in the US, including more than 12 suits consolidated into a multi-district litigation in New York.

Barclays has increasingly turned to Boies Schiller since the firm successfully defended the bank in a $13bn (£8.6bn) case brought by Lehman Brothers over the purchase of the bankrupt entity’s North American broker dealer unit.

Since forming in 1997, Boies Schiller has taken on some of the most high-profile cases in the US, with chairman David Boies representing Al Gore in the dispute surrounding the 2000 Presidential election, while other high-profile clients include Terra Firma chief Guy Hands.

According to The American Lawyer rankings, Boies Schiller is among the most profitable firms in the US, with average profits per partner standing at $2.7m (£1.8m) in 2012.