Drones: Product liability, design specifications and standards
Maurice heads Clyde & Co’s Australian “Energy, Marine, Natural Resources” group and its Australian “Aviation” group and is the Founder and Chair of Clyde & Co’s unique international cross-sector “Global Drones Group”. He has 29 years’ experience.
Maurice has nearly 30 years' international experience in the energy, maritime and natural resources sectors. He has particularly notable expertise advising on high-stakes disputes in the oil & gas and commodities sectors. Clients have described him as being 'second to none' in those sectors, leveraging his qualifications and experience of practicing in the USA, UK, South Africa, the Middle East and China to provide a first-class service for multi-jurisdictional matters.
He has acted for clients with interests or disputes arising out of projects in the JPDA in the Timor Sea, ICHTHYS, Wheatstone, Gorgon, Kitan Oil Field, Bayu-Udan, Greater Sunrise and the Australian North West Shelf. Such disputes are typically high value and often concern ‘real time’ matters involving collisions, allisions, vessel groundings, salvage, general average, demurrage and other liquidated damages issues, as well as complex decommissioning matters, vessel arrests and the defence of same. He has previously held the position of principal external legal counsel on the Marine Emergency Oil Spill Response Team for oil & gas majors BHP and Saudi Aramco. One client has publicly described him as being a "ridiculously qualified lawyer with global experience who easily sees the big picture but can cut to the chase or dive into weeds no one else has even thought of, as required." Another has simply observed publicly that "his expertise is knowing exactly what we need."
He is a noted international thought leader in the drones/UAV and insurance space. In 2019 he pitched the idea to Clyde & Co’s Senior Management to establish a cross-sector drones/UAV offering. It was a revolutionary idea. Clyde & Co’s “Global Drones Group”, founded and Chaired by Maurice, now has a roll-call of partners, senior consultants and senior lawyers across the world who are specialists in their fields and have turned their attention to the unique issues that drones/UAV are presenting in their sectors. Clyde & Co is the only law firm globally that has a dedicated cross-sector drones/UAV offering. In August 2021 he co-authored a 23 chapter text book published by Routledge (London) titled: “Drone Law and Policy: Global Development, Risks, Regulation and Insurance”. He has been engaged by insurance majors, corporates, insurtech companies, governments and regulators to assist in compliance, policy creation, registration, regulation and insurance policy wordings with regard to drones/UAV.
His lateral thinking and thought leadership saw him pitch the idea to Clyde & Co in 2016 of what is now the market leading subrogation insurance recoveries entity in Dubai (i.e. ‘Gulf Recoveries Limited’), now rebranded ‘Clydes Recoveries’ to further utilise its versatility across a broader spectrum of claims internationally.
Maurice has a solid reputation with litigation funding companies worldwide. He has pitched 10 complex matters to funders, each with damages claimed of between $100m and $400m, with a 100% success rate in achieving funding. His funded cases range from shipping disputes, toxic marine torts, international coal trading disputes, industry wide fisheries disputes, offshore construction and biosecurity.
In his aviation practice, Maurice acts for airlines and their insurers, notably defending multiple Australian Court proceedings arising from claims emanating from the MH17, MH370 and Germanwings 9525 catastrophes.
Maurice holds an LLB(Bond), an LLM(Shipping)(Hons) from the University of Cape Town in South Africa, an LLM(Admiralty)(Distinction) from Tulane University in the USA, has completed specialist courses in ‘Maritime Law’ and ‘CIF & FOB Contracts’ at Southampton University in the UK, and in ‘International Trade Law’ at Melbourne University, is qualified in Australia, England and Wales and worked in China and the Middle East for six years.
Legal directories “Chambers & Partners”, “Doyle’s Guide to the Australian Legal Profession”, the “Financial Review”, “Legal 500” and “Who’s Who Legal” have all variously rated Maurice a leading, Band 1 or preeminent lawyer in shipping law, aviation law and international trade law. Legal 500: “Maurice combines his sound academic and practical skills with a commercially sensible approach”; is “relentless, always striving for perfection”, and is “excellent with clients”. Chambers & Partners: “Maurice is very knowledgeable – he knows the ins and outs of a complex industry. He is able to interpret our situation and provide targeted advice.”
Offshore oil & gas and offshore construction
Energy & Natural Resources
Insurance & Reinsurance
Trade & Commodities