Alice McDonnell Managing associate

Contact details

Alice McDonnell

Alice McDonnell
Managing associate

T: +44 20 7809 2437 M: +44 7557 742 604 Email Alice | vCard Office: London

Alice specialises in construction and engineering disputes and advisory work. She works in both domestic and international contexts and has experience working for a broad range of clients on large and complex disputes in international arbitration (ICC and UNCITRAL) and in domestic arbitrations, litigation, adjudications, expert determinations, mediations, advisory and dispute avoidance.
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Alice has over 10 years’ experience in dispute resolution predominantly focussed on the construction, engineering and infrastructure industries.

Alice has also previously worked in third party legal funding, an experience which has given her a unique perspective on the bigger picture of case management and understanding of client objectives, assisting her to think incisively about the merits, economics and enforcement of cases.

Alice’s experience in contentious construction law and general commercial disputes is spread between the UK, Australia and in international disputes. She has worked with an impressive range of clients including international Governments, publicly listed and private national companies and international corporate groups.

“In terms of construction disputes lawyers, Alice is by far one of the best I have worked with. Not only is she technically and commercially astute, but she is able to quickly grasp the financial and practical implications and provide various solutions to the challenges we face. Whilst supporting our business on secondment, despite being thrown in the deep end, Alice managed to get on top of quite complex issues and provide a range of options for consideration whilst building strong relationships and therefore is highly considered by the business”.

Laura Aguiyi, Head of Legal (Places & Communities), Equans

  • Commercial litigation
  • Construction and engineering dispute resolution
  • Dispute resolution

Luxury residential and retail development

Acting in High Court proceedings for the owners of a major residential and retail development in South-West London against a main contractor. The claim relates to substantial and complex defects principally concerning corroded pipework and butterfly valves throughout the building.

High Court proceedings – Residential home in Notting Hill

Acting for the owners of an Edwardian residence in Notting Hill in High Court proceedings following the design and build of a substantial basement which leaked extensively and had to be gutted and rebuilt.

UK hotel dispute – Adjudications and enforcement proceedings

Acting for a UK developer against its contractor in two adjudications concerning the entitlement to and proper measure of liquidated damages and the final account. The project was delivered under a JCT contract with bespoke amendments and involved the construction of a hotel. High Court enforcement proceedings are also underway in respect of the Adjudicators’ decisions.

Residential defects dispute – Supreme Court NSW

Defended and counter claimed in a Supreme Court action for breach of builder’s statutory warranties and negligence. The claim involved a successful application to reinstate a deregistered building company, consideration and pursuit of multiple parties, briefing and management of technical experts and attendance at site inspections and management of court appearances.

Supreme Court NSW proceedings – NSW state government transport sector

Acted for a state Government department in relation to a Supreme Court of New South Wales proceeding concerning allegations from the Contractor of repudiation of contract and breaches of the Australian Consumer Law. The case involved preparation of evidence for 19 witnesses.

JP Morgan Australia Limited v Consolidated Minerals Limited [2010] NSWSC 100

Assisted in the preparation of a high-profile case from discovery to winning judgment in the Supreme Court NSW, for defendant mining company.

More: Commercial litigation

Luxury residential and retail development

Acting in High Court proceedings for the owners of a major residential and retail development in South-West London against a main contractor. The claim relates to substantial and complex defects principally concerning corroded pipework and butterfly valves throughout the building.

High Court proceedings – Residential home in Notting Hill

Acting for the owners of an Edwardian residence in Notting Hill in High Court proceedings following the design and build of a substantial basement which leaked extensively and had to be gutted and rebuilt.

EPC Contractor – ICC arbitrations

Acting for an internationally based Contractor on separate ICC arbitrations arising out of the same project, a major biomass power plant construction dispute. The first arbitration was against the civil works subcontractor, in relation to a bespoke contract. The second against the electrical and instrumentation works to the fuel handling system and boiler.

PFI hospital project – Expert determination

Acted in relation to a bespoke expert determination process relating to a PFI hospital project involving the maintenance of refurbishment works.

Major upgrade works dispute to skyscraper, Manchester

Acting for the owners of a skyscraper in Manchester in relation to major upgrade works which has involved active dispute management & avoidance and advice work with respect to the main contractor.

UK hotel dispute – Adjudications and enforcement proceedings

Acting for a UK developer against its contractor in two adjudications concerning the entitlement to and proper measure of liquidated damages and the final account. The project was delivered under a JCT contract with bespoke amendments and involved the construction of a hotel. High Court enforcement proceedings are also underway in respect of the Adjudicators’ decisions.

ICC arbitrations for major transport infrastructure project

Assisted on separate ICC arbitrations concerning a major transport infrastructure dispute in the GCC. One arbitration concerned a main works package under an amended FIDIC yellow book contract. The other concerned claims against the Consultant Engineer in relation to multiple works packages.

ICC arbitration for major primary works infrastructure

Engaged on an ICC arbitration representing a state based developer in its dispute with its contractor arising from the construction of primary infrastructure works in the GCC. The arbitration involved multiple variation and delay claims and counter claims. Alice co-managed the defences for the delay case.

ICC arbitration – Unfair termination – Transport sector

Worked on an ICC arbitration for an African based state client on the defence of a claim of unfair termination.

Australian arbitration – Mining sector

Assisted on an Australian arbitration concerning a major Australian Contractor’s claim against a mining operation for breach of contract and misleading and deceptive conduct.

Sydney Opera House – VAPS project

Assisted to prepare evidence for adjudication of unpaid payment claims on behalf of the contractor engaged on the VAPS project (the largest project on the Sydney Opera House since its construction).

Australian dispute management – State government transport sector

Part of the legal team for a politicised dispute relating to the termination of 4 major Government highway road contracts held between NSW state government and an Australian contractor that collapsed into liquidation. Scope included risk management post termination of contract, assisting in management of third party claims and the relationship with the Liquidator of the Contractor.

JP Morgan Australia Limited v Consolidated Minerals Limited [2010] NSWSC 100

Assisted in the preparation of a high-profile case from discovery to winning judgment in the Supreme Court NSW, for defendant mining company.

More: Construction and engineering dispute resolution

Domestic arbitration under railway concession agreement

Acted for a major concessionaire / train operator in a domestic arbitration convened under the Railway Industry Dispute Resolution Rules and Arbitration Act 1996 concerning a particular point of contractual interpretation under the concession agreement with significant payment implications.

Luxury residential and retail development

Acting in High Court proceedings for the owners of a major residential and retail development in South-West London against a main contractor. The claim relates to substantial and complex defects principally concerning corroded pipework and butterfly valves throughout the building.

High Court proceedings – Residential home in Notting Hill

Acting for the owners of an Edwardian residence in Notting Hill in High Court proceedings following the design and build of a substantial basement which leaked extensively and had to be gutted and rebuilt.

EPC Contractor – ICC arbitrations

Acting for an internationally based Contractor on separate ICC arbitrations arising out of the same project, a major biomass power plant construction dispute. The first arbitration was against the civil works subcontractor, in relation to a bespoke contract. The second against the electrical and instrumentation works to the fuel handling system and boiler.

PFI hospital project – Expert determination

Acted in relation to a bespoke expert determination process relating to a PFI hospital project involving the maintenance of refurbishment works.

Major upgrade works dispute to skyscraper, Manchester

Acting for the owners of a skyscraper in Manchester in relation to major upgrade works which has involved active dispute management & avoidance and advice work with respect to the main contractor.

UK hotel dispute – Adjudications and enforcement proceedings

Acting for a UK developer against its contractor in two adjudications concerning the entitlement to and proper measure of liquidated damages and the final account. The project was delivered under a JCT contract with bespoke amendments and involved the construction of a hotel. High Court enforcement proceedings are also underway in respect of the Adjudicators’ decisions.

ICC arbitrations for major transport infrastructure project

Assisted on separate ICC arbitrations concerning a major transport infrastructure dispute in the GCC. One arbitration concerned a main works package under an amended FIDIC yellow book contract. The other concerned claims against the Consultant Engineer in relation to multiple works packages.

ICC arbitration for major primary works infrastructure

Engaged on an ICC arbitration representing a state based developer in its dispute with its contractor arising from the construction of primary infrastructure works in the GCC. The arbitration involved multiple variation and delay claims and counter claims. Alice co-managed the defences for the delay case.

ICC arbitration – Unfair termination – Transport sector

Worked on an ICC arbitration for an African based state client on the defence of a claim of unfair termination.

Australian arbitration – Mining sector

Assisted on an Australian arbitration concerning a major Australian Contractor’s claim against a mining operation for breach of contract and misleading and deceptive conduct.

Sydney Opera House – VAPS project

Assisted to prepare evidence for adjudication of unpaid payment claims on behalf of the contractor engaged on the VAPS project (the largest project on the Sydney Opera House since its construction).

Australian dispute management – State government transport sector

Part of the legal team for a politicised dispute relating to the termination of 4 major Government highway road contracts held between NSW state government and an Australian contractor that collapsed into liquidation. Scope included risk management post termination of contract, assisting in management of third party claims and the relationship with the Liquidator of the Contractor.

JP Morgan Australia Limited v Consolidated Minerals Limited [2010] NSWSC 100

Assisted in the preparation of a high-profile case from discovery to winning judgment in the Supreme Court NSW, for defendant mining company.

More: Dispute resolution
  • Construction and engineering
  • Energy and natural resources

Luxury residential and retail development

Acting in High Court proceedings for the owners of a major residential and retail development in South-West London against a main contractor. The claim relates to substantial and complex defects principally concerning corroded pipework and butterfly valves throughout the building.

High Court proceedings – Residential home in Notting Hill

Acting for the owners of a Edwardian residence in Notting Hill in High Court proceedings following the design and build of a substantial basement which leaked extensively and had to be gutted and rebuilt.

EPC Contractor – ICC arbitrations

Acting for an internationally based Contractor on separate ICC arbitrations arising out of the same project, a major biomass power plant construction dispute. The first arbitration was against the civil works subcontractor, in relation to a bespoke contract. The second against the electrical and instrumentation works to the fuel handling system and boiler.

Major upgrade works dispute to skyscraper, Manchester

Acting for the owners of a skyscraper in Manchester in relation to major upgrade works which has involved active dispute management & avoidance and advice work with respect to the main contractor.

UK hotel dispute – Adjudications and enforcement proceedings

Acting for a UK developer against its contractor in two adjudications concerning the entitlement to and proper measure of liquidated damages and the final account. The project was delivered under a JCT contract with bespoke amendments and involved the construction of a hotel. High Court enforcement proceedings are also underway in respect of the Adjudicators’ decisions.

ICC arbitrations for major transport infrastructure project

Assisted on separate ICC arbitrations concerning a major transport infrastructure dispute in the GCC. One arbitration concerned a main works package under an amended FIDIC yellow book contract. The other concerned claims against the Consultant Engineer in relation to multiple works packages.

ICC arbitration for major primary works infrastructure

Engaged on an ICC arbitration representing a state based developer in its dispute with its contractor arising from the construction of primary infrastructure works in the GCC. The arbitration involved multiple variation and delay claims and counter claims. Alice co-managed the defences for the delay case.

ICC arbitration – Unfair termination – Transport sector

Worked on an ICC arbitration for an African based state client on the defence of a claim of unfair termination.

Australian arbitration – Mining sector

Assisted on an Australian arbitration concerning a major Australian Contractor’s claim against a mining operation for breach of contract and misleading and deceptive conduct.

Sydney Opera House – VAPS project

Assisted to prepare evidence for adjudication of unpaid payment claims on behalf of the contractor engaged on the VAPS project (the largest project on the Sydney Opera House since its construction).

Australian dispute management – State government transport sector

Part of the legal team for a politicised dispute relating to the termination of 4 major Government highway road contracts held between NSW state government and an Australian contractor that collapsed into liquidation. Scope included risk management post termination of contract, assisting in management of third party claims and the relationship with the Liquidator of the Contractor.

JP Morgan Australia Limited v Consolidated Minerals Limited [2010] NSWSC 100

Assisted in the preparation of a high-profile case from discovery to winning judgment in the Supreme Court NSW, for defendant mining company.

More: Construction and engineering

EPC contractor – ICC arbitration

Acting for an internationally based contractor on a major biomass power plant construction dispute with its civil works subcontractor, under an ICC arbitration and in relation to a bespoke contract.

Australian arbitration – Mining sector

Assisted on an Australian arbitration concerning a major Australian contractor’s claim against a mining operation for breach of contract and misleading and deceptive conduct.

JP Morgan Australia Limited v Consolidated Minerals Limited [2010] NSWSC 100

Assisted in the preparation of a high-profile case from discovery to winning judgment in the Supreme Court NSW, for defendant mining company.

More: Energy and natural resources

  • The Middle East
  • UK

ICC Arbitrations for major transport infrastructure project

Assisted on separate ICC arbitrations concerning a major transport infrastructure dispute in the GCC. One arbitration concerned a main works package under an amended FIDIC yellow book contract. The other concerned claims against the consultant engineer in relation to multiple works packages.

ICC arbitration for major primary works infrastructure

Engaged on an ICC arbitration representing a state based developer in its dispute with its contractor arising from the construction of primary infrastructure works in the GCC. The arbitration involved multiple variation and delay claims and counter claims. Alice co-managed the defences for the delay case.

Domestic arbitration under railway concession agreement

Acted for a major concessionaire / train operator in a domestic arbitration convened under the Railway Industry Dispute Resolution Rules and Arbitration Act 1996 concerning a particular point of contractual interpretation under the concession agreement with significant payment implications.

Luxury residential and retail development

Acting in High Court proceedings for the owners of a major residential and retail development in South-West London against a main contractor. The claim relates to substantial and complex defects principally concerning corroded pipework and butterfly valves throughout the building.

High Court proceedings – Residential home in Notting Hill

Acting for the owners of an Edwardian residence in Notting Hill in High Court proceedings following the design and build of a substantial basement which leaked extensively and had to be gutted and rebuilt.

EPC Contractor – ICC arbitrations

Acting for an internationally based Contractor on separate ICC arbitrations arising out of the same project, a major biomass power plant construction dispute. The first arbitration was against the civil works subcontractor, in relation to a bespoke contract. The second against the electrical and instrumentation works to the fuel handling system and boiler.

Major upgrade works dispute to skyscraper, Manchester

Acting for the owners of a skyscraper in Manchester in relation to major upgrade works which has involved active dispute management & avoidance and advice work with respect to the main contractor.

UK hotel dispute – Adjudications and enforcement proceedings

Acting for a UK developer against its contractor in two adjudications concerning the entitlement to and proper measure of liquidated damages and the final account. The project was delivered under a JCT contract with bespoke amendments and involved the construction of a hotel. High Court enforcement proceedings are also underway in respect of the Adjudicators’ decisions.

Latest news & insights

06 Apr 2021

From Insights

Adjudicator’s decision enforced under the Construction Act and the Hague Choice of Court Convention 2005

In Motacus Constructions Limited v Paolo Castelli SPA, HHJ Hodge QC gave summary judgment to enforce an adjudicator’s decision pursuant to the Construction Act, despit..

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26 Mar 2021

From Insights

High Court comprehensively rejects Bechtel’s procurement claims against HS2

In the recent High Court judgment Bechtel Ltd v HS2 Ltd [2021] EWHC 458 (TCC) delivered on 4 March 2021, Mr Justice Fraser ruled that HS2 did not breach the Utilities ..

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