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Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance
Nicholas Williams

Nicholas Williams


Nicholas Williams

Nick Williams is the Co-Head of the Americas Insurance Group. His practice focuses on mergers, acquisitions and capital markets transactions in both the property and casualty and life and health insurance industries.

Nick has nearly thirty years of experience in domestic and cross-border insurance M&A transactions, many of them notable. An insurance regulatory and compliance expert, he has pioneered the development of a "one-stop" global insurance regulatory platform for multinational clients, combining Clifford Chance's worldwide offices and best-in-class local counsel to afford those clients seamless advice on a 24/7 basis.

Nick has assisted clients on all manner of insurance-related needs, including reinsurance, brokering, demutualizations, insolvencies, captive insurer formations, licensings and coverage issues, and has represented clients in the governmental as well as the private sector. Nick also has considerable experience in insurance-related capital markets transactions, including IPOs, private placements, 144A and Regulation S offerings, primary and secondary equity offerings. and contingent capital transactions.

In recent years, Nick has been at the forefront of the development of Basel III-compliant insurance products which provide capital relief for global banks and other financial institutions. He is also an acknowledged leader in the life settlement industry, having participated in many of the largest and most notable transactions worldwide. Nick is frequently called upon by boards of directors and senior executives for assistance with their directors' and officers' (D&O) insurance coverage needs.

  • Advising Apollo in its purchase from AIG of a portfolio of life settlements with a face value of $8 billion. This was the largest life settlement transaction in history, comprising over 2,800 policies
  • Advising China Minsheng Investment Corp., Ltd in its $2.6 billion acquisition of Sirius International Insurance Group Ltd.
  • Advising Independence Holding Company in its $152 million sale of IHC Risk Solutions to Swiss Re
  • Advising MasterCard International in the restructuring of its worldwide (100+ countries) insurance operations
  • Advising Royal Bank of Scotland in the sale of its life settlement portfolio
  • Advising IBM in the restructuring of its international trade credit insurance program
  • Advising Deutsche Bank in its sale of a life settlement portfolio
  • Advising Jardine Lloyd Thompson Group in the $250 million acquisition of Towers Watson's reinsurance brokering business
  • Advising the New York Insurance Department in connection with the demutualization of Prudential Insurance Company
  • Advising the New York Insurance Department in connection the demutualization of John Hancock Insurance Company
  • Advising the New Hampshire, California, Illinois, Indiana, New York and Texas Insurance Departments in connection with the rehabilitation of The Home Insurance Company
  • $255 million sale via auction by Fortress Investment Group of its portfolio of Phoenix life insurance settlements
  • Comprehensive restructuring of Deutsche Bank London AG’s life settlement program

News and client work

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Contact details

Career and qualifications

  • Brown University (AB, Phi Beta Kappa) 1984
  • Columbia Law School (JD, a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar) 1988
  • Admitted as an Attorney-at-Law in New York 1989
  • Joined Clifford Chance as a Partner 2005

Professional bodies

  • Director and Past President of the Columbia Law School Association
  • Member of the Life Insurance Council of New York
  • Member of the Life Insurance Settlement Association
  • Chairman and Director of Art Beyond Sight
  • Secretary and Director of Urban Upbound

Awards and citations

  • The "extraordinarily commercial and responsive" Nicholas Williams is noted for his cutting-edge work in emerging areas such as cyber insurance, in addition to his multifaceted insurance transactional and regulatory practice. Sources describe him as "extremely strong, collaborative and well known in the industry."
    Chambers USA 2020: Insurance: Transactional & Regulatory (New York)
  • Recognized practitioner
    Chambers USA 2019: Insurance: Transactional & Regulatory – New York
  • Recognized practitioner
    Chambers USA 2018: Insurance: Transactional & Regulatory – New York