William Godwin QC acts in complex, multi-jurisdictional and high-value disputes often with a cross-border element. He has substantial experience of a wide range of disputes in arbitration and English high court litigation including joint venture, shareholder, partnership, corporate acquisition, insurance, shipping, professional negligence and indemnity disputes. His practice also includes construction and technology disputes and he has particular expertise in FIDIC contracts. He has been described in the directories as "an outstanding advocate", "very bright and experienced, providing detailed analysis of issues" and as having " good credentials in the arbitration communities of China and Asia."

Mr. Godwin was appointed Queen's Counsel in 2017, an award made for excellence in advocacy in the higher courts in England. He is a member of several international arbitration panels and acts as adjudicator.


  • Acting in English High Court (Commercial Court) claims by German industrial group arising from acquisition debt pushdown in 15 jurisdictions following private equity buy-out and restructuring involving conflicts of laws, German corporate law and law of succession, Mexican tax law and valuation of shares in group subsidiary.
  • Acting for UK mining engineers in English High Court (Technology & Construction Court) claims arising from project in central Asia.
  • Acting in English High Court (Chancery Division) claims concerning complex offshore trust structures, share sale and loan agreements.
  • Acting for policyholder accountants against insurers in landmark decision in HLB Kidsons v Lloyds Underwriters and Others [2009] Lloyds Rep IR 8 (CA) and acting in related professional negligence proceedings against brokers and solicitors.
  • Acting for Bosnian corporations in setting aside multimillion dollar Commercial Court judgment in a claim by Chinese SOE under an on-sale of Iranian crude oil.
  • Acting for developers in claims against insurers and contractors following total collapse of docklands development.


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The Legal 500 UK
International Arbitration (2021)
Commercial Litigation (2021)
Leading Individual–Construction (London Bar)
Chambers UK
International Arbitration: General Commercial & Insurance (London Bar) (2010)


  • BPhil, DPhil (PhD), Oriel College, Oxford University
  • BA, University College London, first class
  • Bar of England and Wales
  • Board Member, Great Britain China Centre
  • Arbitration Panel Member, China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission
  • Arbitration Panel Member, Shanghai International Arbitration Center
  • Arbitration Panel Member, Shenzhen Court of International Arbitration
  • Arbitration Panel Member, Chongqing Arbitration Commission
  • Arbitration Panel Member, Dubai International Arbitration Centre
  • Arbitration Panel Member, Mauritius MARC
  • German

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