Tony Willis

Year of Call: 2004

Email: Direct phone: 020 7520 9975

Clerk: Kate Trott

Tony Willis

Year of Call: 2004

Email: Direct phone: 020 7520 9975

Clerk: Kate Trott


“Hailed as a man of ‘great authority, a fantastic, formidable lawyer who commands respect’”
- Chambers & Partners 2013

"Tony Willis is “part of the aristocracy” and a “premier league mediator”"
- Who's Who of Commercial Mediation 2014


Tony Willis is an Independent Mediator in commercial, business and regulatory matters. He was for more than 25 years a Partner in Clifford Chance, London spending two years as a full time Managing Partner and then seven years as Head of the Litigation Practice there. Since 1998 he has been engaged full time as a Mediator, Negotiator and in designing dispute resolution processes. He joined Chambers when he transferred to the Bar in 2004. With a background of advising on and managing some of the largest international litigation in the English Courts, in the US, elsewhere in Europe and in Asia he has a profound knowledge of Dispute Resolution of all kinds. He has for many years ranked in the top category of Mediators listed in Chambers Directory and the Legal 500.

practice areas


Tony has conducted significantly more than a thousand Mediations to date and advised on more in many parts of the UK and in locations such as New York, The UAE, Belgium, Romania, Guernsey, Jersey, the Republic of Ireland, the Bahamas and elsewhere. He has also been appointed Settlement Counsel. Sums in issue have ranged up to 1.2 Billion US Dollars. Issues include Professional Negligence, Board Room, Shareholder and M&A disputes, Partnership, Pensions, Information Technology, Employment, Family Trusts and related disputes, insolvency, tax, charity, oil and gas, civil engineering and construction, insurance and reinsurance. Parties have included multinationals and other companies, individuals, Governments and Departments such as the Home Office, MOD, Revenue & Customs and DEFRA. He has been appointed Mediator by the FSA and dealt with other Regulatory matters including Competition cases.

Important Cases

All matters dealt with as a Mediator are confidential but information can be provided about cases dealt with in recent times provided it is understood that the names of the parties and related details must remain confidential.

Further Information

Tony was trained as a Mediator by CEDR in London in 1990/91 and was a Non Executive Director and member of their training faculty for some years. He is a member of several distinguished panels of mediators including being a founding member in 1999 of PIM Senior Mediators where he was its second Chairman for 2 years during its re-launch in 2009. He is also a Distinguished Fellow of the International Academy of Mediators (IAM) where he is a Board member, a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and a member of the CPR (New York) International Panel of Distinguished Mediators. He was the Founding Chairman from 1997 to 2001 of the Solicitors pro bono Group (now LawWorks) and from 1999 to 2009 was Chairman of the Governing Council of Wycombe Abbey School in Buckinghamshire.



LLB Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand 1966.


Barrister (New Zealand) 1966 to date

Solicitor (England & Wales) 1971 to 1998

Barrister (England & Wales) 2004 to date

Fellow Chartered Institute of Arbitrators

Distinguished Fellow International Academy of Mediators

Directory Quotes

  • The "intelligent and effective" Tony Willis stands out in the market for his immense experience. He has notable experience in professional negligence claims, construction and engineering disputes, as well as cases in the energy sector. He is "very authoritative," according to sources. (Chambers & Partners 2018)
  • The "excellent" Tony Willis is an experienced mediator with a strong background in litigation. Market sources consider him to be "very authoritative." He has notable experience in professional negligence claims, construction and engineering disputes, as well as cases in the energy sector. (Chambers & Partners 2017)
  • "With a background of advising on some of the largest international litigation, Tony Willis of Brick Court Chambers is recommended for a wide range of financial, business and complex mediations in both the UK and overseas." (Legal 500 2016)
  • "Tony Willis is “part of the aristocracy” and a “premier league mediator”. Former managing partner of Clifford Chance, he is a three-time winner of our Mediator of the Year Award and has conducted more than a thousand mediations in relation to areas such as professional negligence, boardroom disputes, construction and insurance for clients such as corporates, individuals, government departments and regulators." (Who's Who: International Who's Who of Commercial Mediation 2014)
  • "Tony Willis really stands out," say sources. He is "hugely experienced and innovative in finding ways of bringing parties together," and interviewees emphasise his knack for "maintaining trust while being firm with the parties and their advisers, along with taking the trouble to understand the dispute and what, legally and commercially, divides the parties." (Chambers & Partners 2014)
  • “Having been involved in full-time mediation since 1998, Tony Willis at Brick Court Chambers has established himself as an almost default choice among solicitors in the know, such is his reputation in the market. Complex, and often international, disputes are regularly on the agenda, and his background as managing partner and head of litigation at Clifford Chance means he is quick to earn the respect of both sides in high-value cases.”  (Legal 500 2013)
  • "Hailed as a man of "great authority, a fantastic, formidable lawyer who commands respect," Tony Willis is highlighted by market sources for his international practice, frequently handling "the most difficult of cases." A commanding figure in the world of mediation, he is seen as "a statesmanlike figure" and is called upon for big-ticket commercial and regulatory matters." (Chambers & Partners 2012)
  • "After a long career in the market, including a period as head of litigation and managing partner at Clifford Chance, Tony Willis at Brick Court Chambers is ‘still an éminence grise in this area’. The gravitas that he brings to mediations is much sought after and commented upon by clients and peers alike, and is reflected in the high-value, complex and often international nature of the disputes he is instructed to mediate." (Legal 500 2012)
  • "Tony Willis, also of Brick Court, is a hugely experienced mediator and "a popular choice for blockbuster matters where heads might need banging together." He is regularly instructed on multi-jurisdictional cases stemming from commercial, business and regulatory disputes." (Chambers UK 2012)
  • "truly excellent" and ranked in 1st place by International Who's Who of Commercial Mediation 2011
  • "‘The god of everyone’, according to peers, clients also rate Tony Willis of Brick Court Chambers extremely highly, and take comfort in the fact that he is always ‘his usual accomplished self’. Others note the much-appreciated ‘gravitas’ he is able to bring to heavyweight, multi-party, multibillion-dollar proceedings; his previous experience as head of litigation and managing partner of Clifford Chance certainly helps him command respect." (Legal 500 2011)

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