Alice McDonald

Alice McDonald


Alice is a barrister in our commercial litigation team. She practises in all areas of commercial law, insolvency law and tax litigation, and regularly attends hearings around the country. She often acts and advises in relation to disputes arising in the asset based lending industry.

Her previous roles include working in the commercial and tax teams of St John’s Buildings in Manchester and for a boutique litigation firm in London where she specialised in high value and multi-jurisdictional tax and commercial law disputes. 

Alice’s experience includes:

  • Appearing at a wide range of County Court and High Court hearings, including:
    • Corporate and personal insolvency petitions and related interim insolvency applications such as applications for validation orders, administration orders and injunctive relief, often at short notice - Alice regularly attends the bankruptcy and winding up courts and has appeared in connection with disputed and high value petitions involving liabilities of up to £18 million. She recently acted as counsel for the debtor in relation to eight applications for validation orders and injunctions to restrain advertisement brought by five related group companies with total liabilities of around £650,000. Alice’s most recent court appearances also include acting for the successful director in an urgent court application to appoint an administrator
    • Interim applications, including summary judgment, strike out and applications to set aside judgments or orders - Alice appeared as sole counsel for the applicant on an application to set aside an order in the High Court (Mercantile Court) in a commercial dispute worth around £1 million, and drafted appeal documents for the Court of Appeal
    • Part 8 proceedings - Alice recently appeared for the successful Claimant in a Part 8 claim for judgment of £150,000
    • Trials concerning disputes over commercial and consumer contracts
    • Landlord and tenant disputes including possession proceedings
  • Advising on commercial matters, including:
    • Commercial and contractual disputes, including guarantor claims
    • Disputes involving allegations of fraud or dishonesty and related interim relief including injunctions, freezing orders and Norwich Pharmacal applications
    • A successful application for a non-party costs order against the director of a company
    • Contentious insolvency disputes
    • Property disputes including possession proceedings and service charge disputes
  • Advising on tax disputes, including:
    • Challenges to HMRC enquiries and discovery assessments
    • Notices of requirement to provide security
    • Inheritance tax
  • Assisting in preparing Requests for Arbitration and Memorial – Alice helped prepare these for an ICSID dispute against a European state concerning a sovereign debt restructuring worth over €2 billion
  • Working on politically sensitive sanctions challenges in the General Court of the EU, and related multi-jurisdictional litigation - as a pupil, Alice attended hearings in the General Court in Luxembourg on a noting brief and worked on claims to the ECHR and challenges to INTERPOL red notices

Alice’s notable work also includes working in a team alongside Graham Aaronson QC, Tom Beazley QC and Jonathan Bremner QC on the following reported tax cases in the High Court and Court of Appeal:

  • The Prudential Assurance Company Limited v Commissioners for HMRC [2016] EWCA Civ 376; [2016] STC 1798: six day hearing in the Court of Appeal in the CFC & Dividend GLO
  • R. (on the application of Imperial Chemical Industries Ltd) v HM Treasury [2016] EWHC 279 (Admin); [2016] BTC 9: hearing in the Administrative Court concerning a challenge to retrospective legislation introduced in Finance (No 2) Act 2015
  • Evonik Degussa UK Holdings Ltd v Revenue and Customs Commissioners [2016] EWHC 86 (Ch); [2016] BTC 4: three-day hearing in the High Court concerning applications for summary judgment on claims enrolled in the Franked Investment Income GLO
  • The Prudential Assurance Company Limited v The Commissioners for HMRC [2015] EWHC 118 (Ch); [2015] STC 1119: two-day hearing in the High Court in the CFC & Dividend GLO