Kieran Humphrey


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Kieran Humphrey is a counsel in O’Melveny’s Hong Kong office and specializes in disputes, regulatory, and advisory matters across a broad range of industries.

He regularly acts in litigation and arbitration for financial institutions, multinationals, and listed companies. He has particular expertise in complex corporate, projects (infrastructure and resources), professional negligence, insurance and employment matters.

Kieran handles critical and high-value disputes for his clients. For example, he has recently acted in a high-profile Commission of Inquiry in Hong Kong, a shareholders’ claim in respect of a listed company, an international arbitration relating to the construction of an electricity plant, and a multi-million dollar dispute involving corporate espionage.

He also assists parties and regulators on contentious regulatory investigations. This includes acting as counsel for a Hong Kong regulator to investigate and prosecute cases of non-compliance.

Kieran was recently nominated as a “Rising Star” for the region at AsiaLaw’s Asia Pacific Dispute Resolution Awards.  He is also recognised by Chambers Asia and Legal 500 for his contentious expertise.

Kieran has been praised by leading legal directories as “particularly rated,” “a safe pair of hands and a very good operator,” and inspires “a strong degree of confidence”.

Honors & Awards

  • Recognized by Chambers Asia-Pacific for Insurance: Contentious (International Firms) (2019-2021)
  • Recognized as "Up & Coming" by Chambers Global for Dispute Resolution (International Firms) (2020-2021)
  • Nominated as a “Rising Star” for the region, AsiaLaw Asia-Pacific Dispute Resolution Awards (2016 and 2018)
  • Ranked as “Up and Coming,” Chambers Asia (2016 to 2018, 2020 to 2021)
  • Ranked as “Next Generation,” Legal 500 (2018 to date)


Bar Admissions

  • Hong Kong
  • England & Wales
  • Australia
  • Singapore International Commercial Court (Foreign Lawyer)

Court Admissions

  • High Court, Australia and New South Wales 
  • High Court, Hong Kong 
  • High Court, United Kingdom, England and Wales


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

Professional Activities


  • ICC-HK Arbitration & ADR Committee
  • Inter-Pacific Bar Association, Chair (2017 to date) and Vice-Chair (2016) of the Insurance Committee
  • Law Society of Hong Kong
  • Law Society of England & Wales
  • Hong Kong Insurance Law Association
  • Chartered Insurance Institute of Hong Kong
  • Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (East Asia branch)

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)

Speaking Engagements

  • Panelist, “Are you covered? Insurance law for fraud litigators,” Asset Recovery Asia (October 2020)
  • Acting for a major contractor in disputes arising from a multi-billion dollar rail project
  • Representing a utilities company in international arbitration relating to the construction of an electricity plant
  • Acting for a Hong Kong regulator as investigations and prosecution counsel
  • Representing a major investment bank in regulatory investigations relating to the alleged misconduct of commodities traders
  • Representing a Hong Kong listed company in a high-value dispute arising from misconduct committed by a major competitor, including advising on regulatory investigations in Hong Kong and other key jurisdictions
  • Appearing in various commercial litigation cases in the High Court of Hong Kong, including as an advocate in contested interlocutory hearings
  • Defending an international insurance broker against high-value claims for professional negligence arising from the placement of insurance programs
  • Advising a leading investment bank on arbitration arising out of a failed investment in China
  • Representing international insurers in court and arbitration proceedings arising from claims under financial lines and casualty insurance policies
  • Advising an international insurance company on the establishment of their insurance business in Hong Kong
  • Representing a leading accounting firm in various Hong Kong proceedings against a former partner
  • Representing a Hong Kong-listed company in a dispute arising from the breach of restrictive covenants by a former management employee
  • Advising a US-listed company on employment issues arising from a significant Asian merger and the subsequent transfer of employees
  • Advising on various corporate transactions, including drafting bespoke contracts, conducting due diligence on specialist issues, and assisting with contentious negotiations