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Christian  Hay

Christian Hay (TEP, MCIArb)

Managing Partner and Head of Dispute Resolution | Guernsey

Dispute Resolution

  • When the going gets tough his resolute expertise is there for all to see
    Chambers & Partners
  • Christian Hay is a tireless advocate for the interests of Collas Crill and Guernsey dispute resolution in general.
    Legal 500 2022
  • Christian Hay is an extremely accomplished advocate who puts forward in the very strongest terms the best position for his clients.
    Legal 500
  • Christian Hay is good with clients and ensures consistency of service quality.
    Legal 500
  • Hard working, tactically shrewd and good on his feet in Court
    Chambers & Partners

Overview

Christian is the Head of Dispute Resolution and Managing Partner in Guernsey. He leads a team of talented litigators with strong expertise in financial services related disputes.

"I pride myself on giving my clients sound, commercial and, above all, practical advice. When it comes to the crunch I put my client's best foot forward and get the job done."

Experience

Christian is among the leading commercial litigators at the Guernsey Bar with a particular expertise in contentious trust related matters and corporate disputes.

If there is a high value dispute between trustees and beneficiaries; between bank and customer/investor; between commercial entities; between majority/minority shareholders; against directors; or within a contentious liquidation, Christian is likely to be acting for one of the parties.

Christian is a CEDR accredited mediator and qualified arbitrator. He regularly acts as mediator or arbitrator in financial services and commercial disputes in Guernsey and Jersey.

Background

Christian joined Collas Crill in 2003. In 2006, Christian qualified as a Guernsey Advocate, and became a partner of the firm and head of dispute resolution in 2007.

Prior to joining Collas Crill, Christian was an associate within the disputes team at White & Case (London) working on international arbitrations concerning projects and contracts in far-flung places such as Lesotho, Kuwait, and Peru; and before that he trained and qualified at Masons (now Pinsent Masons).

Christian is a member of the Guernsey Yacht Club, and the Royal Channel Islands Yacht Club. He enjoys boating, skiing and walking (the dog).

Awards/Directories

  • STEP Worldwide Excellence Award - 2018 and 2019
  • Citywealth - Leaders List
  • Legal 500 2020 - Leading Individual (Hall of Fame) - "an extremely accomplished advocate"
  • Chambers & Partners 2020 - Leading Individual - "very sensible, capable and efficient", "a class act who has terrific judgment"

Memberships

  • STEP (full member)
  • ACTAPS (Association of Contentious Trust and Probate Specialists)
  • CEDR accredited mediator
  • Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitration
  • IBA (International Bar Association)
  • Member of the Guernsey Bar Council
  • ICC United Kingdom

     

 

My services
Changes of Trustee/DORAs
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Changes of trustee documents (DORA or IORAs) usually contain indemnities from the incoming trustee to the outgoing trustee which are often hotly negotiated and can be complex. A change of trustee also presents a good opportunity for the incoming trustee to undertake a due diligence exercise by reviewing the trust documents, ensuring that the previous chain of trusteeship is intact and ensuring that the outgoing trustee ratifies or rectifies any flaws in the trust or the trust documents before the trusteeship is handed over. We have considerable experience in narrowing the issues in these negotiations. We are also well versed in assisting our trustee clients in mitigating risk by spotting (sometimes very significant flaws) in trusts before they are taken on and by ratifying previous discrepancies in a commercial manner – commonly without necessitating the involvement of the court.

Competition
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We are able to assist local businesses on locally applicable competition laws, including mergers and acquisitions processes and approvals and exemptions, as well as advising on the increasingly complex legislation related to anti-competitive behaviours and agreements between businesses and the abuse of a dominant position in a market.

Contentious Risk & Regulatory
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In regulatory disputes there are often fine lines between the usual wrangling with the regulator and something more serious – by matching our mix of experienced contentious and non-contentious lawyers to the particular problem at hand, better and more efficient outcomes are obtained. As Risk and Regulatory experts, our Dispute Resolution team frequently act on contentious matters, able to leverage their experience to help clients achieve the highest regulatory standards and avoid common pitfalls. To find out more click here

Contentious Trusts
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We represent trust corporations, HNWIs, individual trustees and beneficiaries, often dealing with novel points of law and creating new and innovative solutions to fit the needs of our clients. Given the international scope of settlors, investments and assets, we often co-ordinate advice from our multi-jurisdictional teams, meaning that our clients benefit from the knowledge and depth of experience of our people around the globe.

Contentious Wills, Estates & Probate
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We provide fast, cost-effective and sensitive advice on all manner of will related disputes during what is often an extremely upsetting and distressing time for those concerned. We regularly act on multi-party actions for both plaintiffs and defendants.

Contentious Wills, Estates & Probate
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We provide fast, cost-effective and sensitive advice on all manner of will related disputes during what is often an extremely upsetting and distressing time for those concerned. We regularly act on multi-party actions for both plaintiffs and defendants.

Debt Restructuring & Enforcement
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Knowing what to do and when to act when things go wrong is a key part of our service to our clients on both lender and borrower side. Our clients include banks, funds, directors, shareholders and insolvency practitioners. We undertake security reviews and advise on pre-emptive measures. We appreciate the need to act promptly and decisively, and at the same time are sensitive to potential negative publicity for our clients.

Director & Shareholder Disputes
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Thanks to the depth of our experience and the resources of our team, we've acted on some of the largest pieces of litigation brought against directors offshore. We're well placed to deal with the 'bet the farm' proceedings that can occur in these type of disputes and have represented parties involved in intra-company disputes, including executive, non-executive and independent directors, majority and minority shareholders, companies and liquidators. We understand that shareholder disputes are often not simply 'black and white' and our team finds innovative and commercial alternatives to those which the Court may offer – taking a collaborative approach with our clients to ensure that the right result is achieved.

Dispute Resolution
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When your business is involved in any kind of legal dispute it's crucial to work with lawyers who are hands-on, cost-effective and flexible enough to respond quickly and intuitively to your unique situation and needs. We know that there are many different ways a dispute can be resolved and work closely with our clients to understand every aspect of their business, priorities and goals. This allows us to find the best way forward for our clients and to advise on the commercial implications of a dispute, ensuring the process remains as stress-free as possible. Our approach is practical, responsive and tailored to the client's interests. Our expertise and reputation means we're first choice for a range of clients, including banks, trust companies, high net worth individuals and top law firms.

Fraud, Asset Tracing & Freezing Injunctions
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At Collas Crill, we're used to working as part of a multi-jurisdictional team, capable of reacting and responding quickly to urgent requests for assistance with locating and freezing assets. As sophisticated defendants become more adept at dissipating assets, we've been involved in cases that created new law in the Channel Islands in relation to a party's ability to trace assets and recover their losses. With their ability to deal with complex issues the team deliver clear, commercial advice on the availability and likely success of recovery methods.

Insolvency & Restructuring
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For financially distressed companies in need of restructuring and reorganisation, or for those where the opportunity to do so has passed or failed, Collas Crill’s insolvency and restructuring team work to achieve the most beneficial outcome in these difficult situations. 

Our team brings a wealth of experience from a range of diverse backgrounds to give quick, accurate, commercial advice, primarily across the financial services sector. 

Currently working on some of the largest and most complex cross-border insolvencies in the jurisdiction, we frequently advise top law firms from the People’s Republic of China, the United States, the United Kingdom and other jurisdictions. We are regularly briefed by Sovereign Wealth Funds and Fortune 500 Companies to advise on particular restructurings, as well as investment managers from Europe; the United States and Russia. 

At whatever stage we are engaged, our involvement will assist in identifying the on-going risks facing a client and to enable that client to continue to identify and to effectively manage deteriorating relationships with creditors, financiers, investors or other interested parties.

International Arbitration and Mediation
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Arbitration is increasingly used globally as a cost-effective, confidential and efficient alternative to court litigation for solving commercial, construction and more frequently trust disputes. The global enforceability of arbitral awards and the successful adoption of virtual technology by most arbitration institutions of makes it an attractive option for resolving disputes. With offices in Cayman, BVI, Guernsey and Jersey we can advise you on every aspect of international arbitration. Our dedicated arbitration specialists will work alongside you to quickly determine the best approach for a successful conclusion.

Private Client
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As global legislation, regulation and taxation constantly change and become more complex, it has never been more important to make long-term plans to secure your future, the future of your family or your business. We cut through the legal jargon to provide clear, practical advice when you most need it and anticipate the challenges you are likely to face so that you can rest assured you and your family are in safe hands at every step of the way.

Trustee Duties
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The duties of a trustee plays in managing the trust assets and dealing with beneficiaries not only vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, but are dictated by trust agreement and its nuances, the type of trust and its specific purpose. Advising on trustee duties is a rapidly growing area given the increasingly complex legal and regulatory framework to which trustees must adhere. Importantly, trustees are becoming increasingly aware of the advantages of acting early and seeking advice on their duties – particularly in situations of potential conflict or stress. Trustees are also making more use of the courts in asking for directions or in having "momentous decisions" blessed.

Trustee Risk & Regulatory Management
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Developments, consolidations and regulation have means that effective risk management and mitigation has never been more important. Our advice is not a ‘one size fits all’ solution, but rather is based on an individual company’s specific business model. By building a partnership with you we add value by providing to trustees with a range of regulatory advice, administration support, products and services within a dedicated team approach, precedent development and on-going education and industry updates. Together with our multi-disciplinary risk and regulatory team, we advise on anti money laundering laws and the regulation of trust companies and can assist in the creation and improvement of straightforward operating procedures, including checklists, designed in conjunction with the needs of a trustee to ensure that all members of staff, no matter what their experience, can provide consistent and accurate back office services.

Trusts & Fiduciary
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We work closely with trust and fiduciary businesses and their clients to build strong relationships based on trust, confidence and a deep understanding of their priorities and needs. We have an extensive range of experience in terms of particular products or service lines, including pensions and Shariah, and many of the team have worked in the other international off and onshore jurisdictions prominent in the world of wealth management. We have associated skills in dispute resolution, risk and regulatory, and image protection. We ensure that thought has been given to the composition of the team on every piece of work we do, and use our mix of skill and experience effectively.

News 27 Jun 2022

STEP PCA 2022 shortlist

Collas Crill has been shortlisted for Contentious Trusts and Estates Team of the Year (mid size) at the STEP Private Client 2022 awards. The STEP Private Client Awards are...

News 6 Jun 2022

Channel Islands Top 35 Under 35

Collas Crill Associate Ben Le Page has been listed in eprivateclient's Channel Islands Top 35 Under 35 private client practitioners for 2022, following his inclusion in the...

Insight 1 Jun 2022

Crypto-assets in private wealth

In episode 6 of our On the sofa podcast, Christian Hay, Collas Crill's head of dispute resolution in Guernsey, discusses crypto-assets in private wealth structures with Matt...

News 9 Feb 2022

Who's Who Legal's Private Client

Three Collas Crill lawyers have been listed in the latest edition of Who's Who Legal's Private Client Directory. Guernsey Managing Partner and Head of Dispute Resolution...

News 1 Feb 2022

Private Client Global Elite

Two Collas Crill lawyers have been included in the Private Client Global Elite Directory 2022/23, a listing of the world's more respected lawyers advising ultra-high net...

News 9 Dec 2021

Collas Crill Moot

Elizabeth College is the winner of this year's Collas Crill Moot. Sixth formers Jonathan Vickers and Josh Merrien took on Rosalie Van Zutphen and Amelie Smith from the...

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Guide 13 Oct 2017

Without Prejudice - In the Matter of the R Trusts

"We wants it, we needs it. Must have the precious." Gollum/Smeagol - Lord of the Rings IN THE MATTER OF THE R TRUSTS The Royal Court of Guernsey has recently handed down...

Guide 19 Oct 2015

Asset Tracing and Recovery in the Channel Islands

It is always critical to ensure that there is value in pursuing or continuing to pursue proceedings. However, taking investigative and protective measures in offshore...

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Event 14 Mar 2022
Past Event

Trust & Litigation Forum

Managing Partner Christian Hay will be speaking on 'trust and estate litigation in a changing world' at the Private Client Global Elite's Trust and Estates Litigation Forum...

Event 24 Jun 2021
Past Event

ICC Annual Arbitration & ADR Conf.

Christian Hay, Managing Partner Guernsey, is speaking at the ICC Annual Arbitration & ADR Conference on 24th June (virtual). Introduction to Enforcement of Arbitral...

Event 19 Feb 2021
Past Event

Private Client In Review

Christian Hay, Managing Partner in our Guernsey office, will take part in the first ever Thought Leaders 4 Private Client Year in Review.  This is the ultimate showdown...

Event 13 Jan 2021
Past Event

Mistake seminar

We will be hosting a timely reminder on mistake and rectification in offshore trusts.  Have you found a mistake in your trust documentation? Advice at inception lead to...

Event 16 Oct 2020
Past Event

STEP Fire & Ice Ball 2020

25th anniversary of the STEP Guernsey's Annual Ball.

Event 26 Feb 2020
Past Event

Trusts & Estates Litigation Forum

Private Client Global Elite's Trust & Estates Litigation Forum 2020 will take place on 26 - 28 February in Marrakech, Morocco. The conference, written and directed by...

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