Kieran Humphrey

Counsel

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Kieran Humphrey is a highly-regarded dispute resolution lawyer in O’Melveny’s Hong Kong office.  He regularly acts in arbitration,  litigation and investigations for financial institutions, multinationals and listed companies.

Kieran is recognised for his expertise by leading legal directories such as Chambers Asia-Pacific, Chambers Global and Legal 500.  He has been praised as “extremely intelligent and hardworking”, “a trusted adviser”, “responsive, insightful and provides commercially astute advice”, and for inspiring “a strong degree of confidence”. 

Kieran was also nominated as a “Rising Star” for the region at AsiaLaw’s Asia Pacific Dispute Resolution Awards.

Among his other credentials, Kieran is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb UK) and regional arbitration institutes. He is also a contributing author to a number of leading textbooks.

Honors & Awards

  • Chambers Asia-Pacific - Ranked as “Band 3” in contentious insurance and “Up and Coming” for Dispute Resolution.

  • Chambers Asia-Pacific says:
    • Kieran Humphrey continues to advise on a diverse selection of disputes work, including product liability claims, employment disputes and joint venture disputes. A client says: "He was very hard-working and resourceful, and powered through a mountain of work without anything being too much a problem; he was able to take on everything we gave him, and was very good at delegating when necessary. He was extremely important to the process." (2022)

    • Kieran Humphrey continues to advise on a diverse selection of disputes work, including product liability claims, employment disputes and joint venture disputes.  One client considers him "extremely intelligent and hard-working." (2021)

    • Kieran Humphrey received “extensive praise for his broad commercial dispute resolution practice”.  Clients say: "he is responsive, insightful and provides commercially astute advice. He's a trusted adviser and a valued sounding board on legal and risk-related matters." (2020)

    • Kieran Humphrey is commended by clientsfor being “very responsive and offering a personal touch on mandates."  One client concludes: "I have always been impressed with how thorough he is. He is very detailed and he considers every possible angle and dimension that anyone could think of." (2019)

    • Kieran Humphrey is praised by clients: “He is very responsive and is able to decode complex matters into understandable language." (2018)

    • Kieran Humphrey impresses market observers, who single him out as "a safe pair of hands and a very good operator". (2017)

    • Kieran Humphrey inspires "a strong degree of confidence" in his clients who praise him as "a solid performer" who "does a lot of the heavy lifting on cases." (2016)
  • Chambers Global - Ranked as “Up and Coming” for Dispute Resolution.

  • Legal 500 - Ranked as a “Rising Star” for Dispute Resolution and previously ranked as “Next Generation” for contentious insurance.

  • Legal 500 says:
    • Kieran Humphrey is a “trusted counsellor and sounding board, and can be relied upon to give clear and practical advice, based on his extensive experience across a number of key markets and industries. He has always been focused on understanding and meeting our needs.” (2022)

    • One client says: “I would recommend Kieran Humphrey… I have been impressed in the past at how [he is] able to dissect the problem and provide very strong strategic advice to get to a desired outcome.” (2022)
  • Benchmark Litigation - Nominated for “Rising Star” award at the Asia-Pacific Dispute Resolution Awards in 2016 and 2018 (formerly known as the AsiaLaw Dispute Resolution Awards).

Admissions

Bar Admissions

  • Hong Kong
  • England & Wales
  • Australia

Court Admissions

  • High Court, Hong Kong 
  • High Court, England and Wales
  • High Court, Australia
  • Supreme Court, New South Wales 
  • Singapore International Commercial Court (Foreign Lawyer)

Education

  • University of Sydney, LL.B. (First Class Honours)
  • University of Sydney, B.A. (History and Government & International Relations)

Professional Activities

Member

  • Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) and other regional arbitration institutes
  • Inter-Pacific Bar Association, Former Chair (2017 to 2021) and Vice-Chair (2016) of Committee
  • ICC-HK Arbitration & ADR Committee
  • Law Society of Hong Kong
  • Law Society of England & Wales
  • Society of Construction Lawyers

Author (contributing)

  • Bullen & Leake & Jacob’s Precedents of Pleadings (Hong Kong edition)
  • Emden’s Construction Law (Hong Kong edition)
  • Lexis Nexis’ Litigation Practical Legal Guidance and Employment Practical Legal Guidance
  • The White Book: Hong Kong Civil Procedure (2015 to date)
  • Commercial Litigation in Hong Kong (Second Edition)
  • Commercial Arbitration in Hong Kong (Second Edition)

Speaking Engagements

  • Kieran has presented to academic and professional audiences across various forums including at universities (as a guest lecturer), professional conferences (including the Inter-Pacific Bar Association’s Annual Conferences and Asset Recovery Asia Conference), professional institutes/bodies (including the Chartered Insurance Institute of Hong Kong, Malaysian Bar Association and ARIAS Asia) and client seminars.
  • Advising a leading investment bank on arbitration arising out of a failed investment in China
  • Acting for a major contractor in disputes arising from a multi-billion dollar rail project
  • Acting for Hong Kong investors in arbitration against a PRC media company for breach of a share purchase agreement
  • Representing an international pharmaceutical company in arbitration proceedings to resolve a dispute worth over US$100 million
  • Acting for a leading mining services provider in a long-running proceedings with a listed resource company
  • Acting for a state-owned enterprise in international arbitration and related court proceedings to resolve a multi-million dollar contractual dispute
  • Defending an international broker against high-value claims for professional negligence
  • Representing international insurers in arbitration and court proceedings arising from claims under financial lines and casualty insurance policies
  • Acting for a Hong Kong regulator as investigations and prosecution counsel
  • Acting for a listed company in a dispute arising from the breach of restrictive covenants by a former management employee
  • Advising on various corporate transactions, including drafting bespoke contracts, conducting due diligence on specialist issues, and assisting with contentious negotiations