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Adam Epstein - Mishcon de Reya

Adam Epstein


Personal Profile

Adam is head of the firm's standout Regulatory Group, a practice that encompasses a broad number of sectors and regulatory wide services.

From there, he leads the Firm's highly regarded Financial Services Investigations and Enforcement practice, defending clients against the financial services regulatory bodies, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA). For 30 years, he has defended some of the biggest enforcement cases to emerge. He knows the FCA and PRA prosecution well and has practical hands on experience in front of the decision makers. He also has extensive experience in cross-jurisdictional matters. In addition to defending contested actions, his work often takes place in the pre investigation and pre enforcement stages, helping clients protect themselves against future possible enforcement action. He represents both individuals and institutions.

Adam is also very experienced in representing clients facing challenge or investigation by a wide variety of other business regulators and enforcement authorities, and leads the firm's Professional Discipline practice. He has had wide experience over many years advising all manner of professionals and businesspeople facing regulatory and enforcement issues. His experience includes acting for accountants, lawyers, insolvency practitioners and for pension trustees, and for those being investigated by the Gambling Commission and by the Takeover Panel.

For many years, Adam has been widely recognised in the area of Financial Services.  He is ranked in the Hall of Fame in Legal 500 and in Band 1 by Chambers & Partners. Legal 500 2023 states: "Adam Epstein is the doyen of the field. A reassuring adviser for clients who completely understands the strengths and weaknesses of the case and adjusts his strategy to suit."

Key Experience

Whilst many of Adam's cases have been the subject of comment and speculation in the national press, much of his work is confidential. For this reason, we are only able to provide limited details of some of the cases Adam has been involved in recent years.

Financial Services

Adam has acted successfully over the years in very many disciplinary cases against the regulators both for individuals and institutions. A representative list of recent matters includes acting:

  • for John Varley (CEO of Barclays at the relevant time) in the multi headed issues between 2012 and 2020 arising from Barclays' relationship with Qatar during the 2008 credit crunch
  • for one of the senior HBOS managers in the recent FCA/PRA investigation, which concluded after six years with the regulators taking no action against our client
  • in the 4 week Upper Tribunal proceedings, for one of the senior Swiss managers being pursued by the FCA in relation to matters regarding Julius Baer
  • for an insurance company in an FCA investigation with a multi jurisdiction dimension
  • for a well known asset manager in a high profile FCA investigation
  • for a small consumer focused firm in relation to aggressive supervisory challenges to the foundation of its business
  • for the Chief Risk Officer of a Bank in relation to an FCA investigation
  • in the first reported disciplinary case of proceedings by the regulator concerning high frequency trading

Professional Discipline

  • Acting for a well-known betting institution in proceedings in front of the Gambling Commission
  • Defending an accountant in relation to the Tesco accounting black hole investigation by the Financial Reporting Council (FRC)
  • Advising the FRC in a publicly announced investigation
  • Acting for an accountant in relation to a complaint by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales (ICAEW)
  • Acting for an insolvency practitioner in a contested licencing application to the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
  • Advising a corporate in relation to information requirements from the Pensions Regulator
  • Acting for a well-known businessman in a Takeover Panel investigation

Career History

Partner, Mishcon de Reya LLP
Qualified, Fox Williams
Trainee, Seifert Sedley Williams
College of Law
Cambridge University (Honorary Senior Exhibitioner)

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