Our team has an in-depth understanding of the needs of offshore operators and oil and gas companies, having specialised in advising them for many years. Clients recognise our quick, commercial, determined, hands-on approach, gained from work on many of the largest offshore projects worldwide over the last 20 years.
  • Profile
  • Experience
  • Key contacts

We are retained by oil and gas companies, shipbuilders, shipowners, marine and offshore contractors, engineering companies, investors and lenders involved in the offshore industry. Our team has extensive experience in dealing with contract negotiation and dispute resolution relating to design, construction, installation and operations. This includes activities such as seismic survey, drilling and exploration subsea and surface installation.

We assist companies and contractors through all phases of projects including:

  • corporate structures
  • negotiation and drafting of contracts
  • financing
  • delivery and installation
  • operations
  • decommissioning.

We routinely handle complex and novel projects throughout the offshore oil and gas industry. Advising clients on innovative projects is an important part of our work. In particular, we have specialist expertise in offshore LNG.

We have acted on offshore LNG projects for energy companies, shipyards, shipowners and offshore contractors covering a wide variety of different project structures and we are also regularly consulted by international shipping associations and financial advisers to the oil and gas business.

We believe that our clients benefit from our deep experience and collective knowledge base in this industry.

Stephenson Harwood attracts praise for its "focus, imagination, innovation and determination."
The Legal 500 UK 2011

FPSO projects

Negotiating contracts for floating production projects including EPCI, T&I and O&M agreements, for operations in each of the major offshore oil and gas regions including North Sea, Nigeria, Angola, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand, Vietnam, Cote d'Ivoire, Mauritania and Equatorial Guinea.

Deep water drilling projects

Negotiating terms for the construction, leasing and operation of numerous deep water drilling units including two semi-submersible drilling units to be built in Korea and operated in Brazil, two semi-submersible units to be constructed in a European yard and two drilling vessels to be constructed in China and completed in Singapore.

Major FPSO dispute

Acting on the largest ever dispute concerning the design and construction of a floating production vessel, including disputes over delivery, variation orders, warranty items, insurance claims, rectification costs and termination.

Drilling contract: US$500 million dispute

Successfully defending a drilling contractor against the largest single claim ever made in a London Maritime Arbitration.

Drilling vessel construction litigation

Acting on behalf of the builder in a high profile dispute concerning the design and construction of two high-specification drilling vessels including delay and disruption claims determined in arbitration and legal disputes successfully resolved before the English Court of Appeal.

Offshore engineering: Bespoke terms: Subsea installation: Brazilian FPSO project

Acting for a subsea contractor in bringing multiple delay and disruption claims in excess of US$100 million against its operator client on the first FPSO development in Brazilian waters conducted on English law. The claims were settled in our clients favour.

Offshore engineering: revised logic marine construction form

Acting for marine contractors on their disputed US$290 million claim against an international oil company for sums due on the decommissioning and removal of an oil platform from the UK North Sea. 

Offshore engineering: subsea installation dispute

Acting for a subsea contractor against an international gas company for delay and disruption caused by severe delays progressing with completion of a pipeline project off Trinidad. We successfully negotiated settlement terms in our clients favour.

Drilling rig day rate contract

Drafting for drilling contractors special terms under which one of their rigs would provide emergency assistance at a North Sea field which had an accidental underwater gas leak. In particular, we carried out modifications to the exclusions and limitations clauses so that the oil company took full responsibility for loss or damage to the rig and crew in all circumstances.

Standard terms for offshore contracting 

We drafted a comprehensive suite of contracts principally aimed at regulating an international offshore installation contractor’s relationship with operators, sub-contractors, service, materials and equipment providers, to meet industry recognised standards and requirements of major international oil companies.

Offshore engineering: logic form: delay in start up

We represented a subsea contractor in court proceedings, including an injunction brought by their operator client for alleged delay and premature withdrawal from a subsea pipe project in the North Sea. After collating evidence and preparing the contractors case, the injunction was discharged, on amicable terms, within three working days.


Stuart Beadnall Partner

T:  +44 20 7809 2936
M:  +44 7801 070 567 Email Stuart | Vcard Office:  London


Tony Concagh Partner

T:  + 44 20 7809 2626
M:  + 44 7905 406 244 Email Tony | Vcard Office:  London

© Stephenson Harwood LLP 2016. Any reference to Stephenson Harwood in this document means Stephenson Harwood LLP and/or its affiliated undertakings. Any reference to a partner is used to refer to a member of Stephenson Harwood LLP.