Chris Yates is a senior commercial disputes partner acting on the firm's highest profile cases. He leads the firm's Sports & Entertainment Group, where he represents investors, owners and stakeholders on industry defining matters. Chris also specialises in the defence of "stock drop" securities litigation under s90/90A FSMA; an area where the firm leads the market. Consistent with the firm's global platform, his practice is international - Chris regularly acts on cross-border disputes involving concurrent litigation in multiple jurisdictions. His client base is similarly broad; Chris advises private equity, FTSE 100 companies, SOEs, financial institutions, hedge funds, C-suite executives, founders and HNW clients. Chris is recognised in the directories in commercial litigation, banking litigation and sport, where he is commended for his practical and commercially strategic advice,
- Representing 4 global talent agencies in a market-defining dispute with FIFA and the FA in a successful Rule K arbitration challenge to the implementation of fee caps.
- Representing a Premier League football club in arbitration and disciplinary proceedings relating to alleged breaches of the Premier League rules.
- Representing a minority shareholder in a former Premier League football club in successful unfair prejudice proceedings in the Commercial Court relating to their investment in the Club.
- Representing stakeholders regarding the legalities of the European Super League Project
- Representing a global media group in the defence of multiple claims in the Commercial Court relating to breach of privacy
- Representing a FTSE 100 gambling business in Commercial Court proceedings relating for a breach of post M&A warranties involving irregularities discovered post purchase.
- Representing a FTSE 100 financial institution in the defence of a stock drop claim for follow-on litigation and alleged losses arising from a US Senate Investigation.
- Representing a former Chairman and CEO of a FTSE 100 banking group in the defence of s90/90A litigation
- Representing HNW founders of a global business in multi-jurisdiction proceedings in Hong Kong, the Netherlands and BVI in relation to fraudulent activity surrounding a listing to the HKSE
- Representing a FTSE 100 in the defence of multiple concurrent regulatory investigations and follow on litigation arising from the LIBOR scandal.
News and client work
Career and qualifications
- King's College London (LL.B) 2000
- King's College London (PGCert) 2002
- Admitted as a solicitor in England & Wales 2004
- Joined Clifford Chance 2010
- Admitted as a solicitor in Hong Kong 2011
- Partner since 2016
Awards and citations
- The “brilliant” Chris Yates is “very client-friendly,” according to market commentators. He is recognised for his work on major cross-border disputes and is “efficient, really on top of things and rolls up his sleeves”.
- “Up-and-coming Chris Yates is described as ‘unflappable, charming and able’.”
Legal 500 UK
- “Chris Yates is regarded as a rising star in the commercial litigation arena.”
Chambers UK: Litigation
- “’Very commercial up-and-comer’ and group head Christopher Yates is ‘a fine tactician’ and ‘good with clients’; he ‘knows the football industry backwards’.”
The Legal 500: Sport
- “Clifford Chance LLP's footprint in the sports sector is largely down to commercial litigator Christopher Yates, who recently successfully acted for VB Football Assets on its high-profile dispute over the ownership of Blackpool FC. He is also highly skilled in contentious issues surrounding regulations and anti-doping.”
Legal 500 UK
- Chambers Reviews
"Christopher Yates has experience advising clients across a broad array of disputes, including those related to contested joint ventures and SPAs. He is particularly noted for his work for clients in the sports sector."
"Christopher Yates is a sports lawyer with a strong contentious practice that covers the full gamut of commercial and regulatory disputes in the sector. He regularly advises sports clubs and event organisers in relation to sponsorship, broadcasting and branding disputes."
- Strengths provides by Chambers
"Christopher is very approachable and proactive with advice. He has a clear understanding of the matter and the options available."
- Sport Client UK
"Chris is very responsive, willing to discuss every detail and able to grasp the commercial reality of our sector."
- Commercial and Corporate Litigation Client
"He's very effective and easy to work with."
- Up-and-coming Chris Yates is described as “unflappable, charming and able”.
The Legal 500
- Chris Yates is regarded as a rising star in the commercial litigation arena. He has recently been active representing financial institution clients.