Mark Vinall has a busy and varied practice, dealing principally with media & entertainment, commercial and regulatory disputes, working both as sole counsel and as part of a larger team. 

Mark continues to be ranked as a "star individual" in Chambers and Partners for media & entertainment law. He holds both Legal 500 2019 and Chambers and Partners 2020 rankings in this area and telecommunications and an additional ranking for commercial dispute resolution in both Chambers and Partners 2020 and Chambers Global 2020.  

Experience

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Media & Entertainment

Mark regularly acts on behalf of a wide range of clients in this sector, including artists, managers, record companies, publishers, film/TV companies, literary agents and collecting societies. 

His extensive experience includes artist/manager disputes (involving artists including Harry Hill, Rebecca Ferguson, Duffy, Seal and James), copyright (including songwriting disputes, infringement claims and website blocking orders), royalty disputes, group partnership disputes, cancelled concerts, video game development and merchandising. 

He also undertakes work on media regulation, for example advising in relation to the Audiovisual Media Services Directive and the Ofcom Broadcasting Code. 

Cases

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Sport

Mark has appeared in a number of sports cases covering a range of contractual, regulatory and disciplinary sporting disputes. He has been involved in several contractual disputes about sports broadcasting rights, player transfers and sponsorship. He has worked on disciplinary cases in horseracing and rugby union, and selection appeals in showjumping and taekwondo. He also acted for the Rugby Football Union in London Welsh’s appeal against the refusal to promote them to the Premiership because of their ground-sharing arrangements.

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Commercial

Mark acts in a broad range of commercial disputes, both as sole counsel and as part of a team. Some recent cases appear below. 

Cases

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Civil Fraud, Asset Recovery & Injunctive Relief

Mark has been involved in various domestic and international fraud cases, including those involving allegations of corruption, abuse of intellectual property and theft of confidential information. He has experience of obtaining a range of forms of interim relief, including on an urgent without notice basis, and of working with forensic accountants and computer experts. He has experience as sole counsel of both obtaining and resisting freezing injunctions. 

A selection of cases in which he has been involved are set out below.

Cases

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Financial Services

Mark’s financial services practice includes contractual and property disputes in the banking and asset finance fields, regulatory proceedings, and civil claims for damages alleging breaches of regulatory rules. 

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Arbitration

Mark has been involved in domestic and international arbitrations under a variety of different sets of rules (ICC, LCIA, UNCITRAL, ad hoc, sporting) and in UK court proceedings arising out of international arbitration awards.

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Public & Regulatory

Mark undertakes a broad range of public law and regulatory work, encompassing judicial review (including “commercial” judicial review), public procurement and professional discipline (including several cases relating to Chartered Accountants). 

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Telecommunications

Mark has extensive experience of appeals under the Communications Act 2003 concerning the on the EU Common Regulatory Framework for Electronic Communications. He acted for Ofcom in the first Supreme Court case in the area, as well as on appeals concerning leased lines (British Telecommunications plc v Ofcom [2017] CAT 25, as well as the appeals arising out of the previous market review Business Connectivity Market Review appeals  [2013] CAT 15; [2013] CAT 29),  mobile termination rates (Everything Everywhere Ltd v Competition Commission & ors [2013] EWCA Civ 154), and local access (Local loop unbundling and wholesale line rental price control appeals  [2013] CAT 8).

Mark was also involved in the leading case on awards of costs against Ofcom in electronic communications appeals (British Telecommunications plc v Ofcom [2018] EWCA Civ 2542). 

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Achievements

Education

BA Oxon (Law with French Law) First Class; (Chapman Scholar, Inner Temple)

Publications

  • "Old games, new issues: the London Olympics Association Right" – ITMA Review June 2012.
  • Contributor to LaPolt, Building your artist’s brand as a business (International Association of Entertainment Lawyers, 2012).
  • Contributor to Goulding, Employee Competition: Covenants, Confidentiality and Garden Leave (OUP; 3rd ed. 2016; 2nd ed. 2011; 1st ed. 2007).
  • “The English Approach to Choice of Law and Jurisdiction in Employment Covenants Not to Compete” (2010) 31 Comparative Labor Law and Policy Journal 375 (with Paul Goulding QC).
  • Contributor to Lang, Administrative Court, Practice and Procedure (Sweet & Maxwell 2006).
  • Digester of cases for the Administrative Court Digest (Thomson Sweet & Maxwell), 2008-.

Selected earlier reported cases

Media & Entertainment

  • CDV Software Entertainment AG v Gamecock Media Europe Ltd [2009] EWHC 2965 (Ch); [2010] EWHC 159 (Ch) (contractual dispute concerning video game development)
  • Wadlow v Samuel [2007] EWCA Civ 155 (management dispute concerning Seal)
  • British Phonographic Industry & ors v MCPS- PRS Alliance [2008] E.M.L.R. 5 (the joint online licence case)

Commercial

  • Shared Network Services Ltd v NextiraOne UK Ltd [2012] EWCA Civ 1171 (White Book 52.3.7) (security for costs where permission to appeal granted because of “some other compelling reason”)
  • Meat Corporation of Namibia Ltd v Dawn Meats (UK) Ltd [2011] EWHC 474 (Ch) (White Book 35.3.4) (whether one party can instruct an expert who has been involved in confidential discussions with the other) 
  • GHSP Inc. v AB Electronic Ltd [2010] EWHC 1828 (Comm); [2011] 1 Lloyd’s Rep 432  (“battle of forms” dispute)
  • Seyfried v Euro-IB [2010] EWHC 553 (Ch) (terms of an oral contract and allegations of breach of fiduciary duty)
  • Olafsson v Foreign and Commonwealth Office [2009] EWHC 2608 (QB) (defective service of English claim form in Iceland)
  • DHL GBS (UK) Ltd v Fallimento Finmatica SpA [2009] EWHC 291 (Comm); [2009] 1 Lloyd's Rep 430 (proceedings to enforce Italian judgment obtained in breach of London arbitration agreement)
  • Duarte v Black and Decker Corporation [2007] EWHC 2720 (QB); [2008] 1 All ER (Comm) 401 (applicable law in relation to covenants in restraint of trade).

Civil Fraud, Asset Recovery & Injunctive Relief

  • R v Waya [2012] UKSC 51; [2013] 1 AC 294 (effect of A1P1 ECHR on Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 confiscation regime considered by 9-judge Supreme Court)
  • JSC BTA Bank v Ablyazov [2013] EWHC 510 (Comm) (acted for one of the defendants at an early stage)
  • BLP UK Ltd v B&Q plc [2008] EWHC 696 (QB) (resisting application for interim injunction to restrain termination of agreement for supply of goods).
  • Jafari-Fini v Skillglass Ltd [2007] EWCA Civ 261 (challenge to judge’s finding of bribery).

Financial Services

  • Spreadex Ltd v Sekhon [2008] EWHC 1136 (Ch); [2009] 1 BCLC 102 (effect of FSA conduct of business rules on financial spread betting)
  • In 2007, Mark worked with the FSA unfair contract terms team in its review of the fairness of mortgage exit administration fees.

Arbitration

  • LCIA arbitration on whether computer software is “goods” for the purposes of the Commercial Agents Regulations
  • ICC arbitration between film co-producers
  • Sole counsel for Merchant Ivory Productions in High Court proceedings arising out of an International Film and Television Alliance arbitration.
  • DHL GBS (UK) Ltd v Fallimento Finmatica SpA [2009] EWHC 291 (Comm); [2009] 1 Lloyd's Rep 430 
  • Acting for Danish company in LCIA arbitration relating to major art exhibition.
  • Junior counsel for a Dutch company in ad hoc arbitration of oil and gas engineering dispute 
  • Sole counsel for administrators of a German telecommunications company in UNCITRAL arbitration proceedings.
  • Republic of Kazakhstan v Istil Group [2007] EWCA Civ 471; [2007] 2 Lloyd’s Rep 548; [2008] 1 All ER (Comm) 88 (residual jurisdiction of Court of Appeal)

Public & Regulatory

  • R v Waya [2012] UKSC 51; [2013] 1 AC 294 (Proceeds of Crime Act and A1P1)
  • Acted for the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills in a judicial review challenge to exercise of company investigation powers (2012). 
  • Countryliner Ltd v Surrey County Council [2011] EWCA Civ 373 (public procurement dispute relating to bus services).
  • R (Morales) v Parole Board [2011] EWHC 28 (Admin) [2011] 1 WLR 1095 (whether the Parole Board’s lack of coercive powers to require the production of documents was compatible with Art. 5(4) ECHR). 
  • R (UNISON) v Monitor [2009] EWHC 3221 (Admin); [2010] PTSR 1827 (cap on NHS Foundation Trusts’ private patient income)
  • R (London Borough of Hillingdon) v Lord Chancellor (Law Society and NSPCC intervening) [2008] EWHC 2683 (Admin); [2009] 1 FCR 1 (family court fees) 
  • R (Brooke) v Parole Board [2008] EWCA Civ 29; [2008] 1 WLR 1950, [2008] 3 All ER 289
  • R (The Law Society) v Legal Services Commission [2007] EWCA Civ 1264; [2008] Q.B. 737 (successful procurement challenge to legal aid contracts)

Telecommunications

  • Arqiva Ltd v Everything Everywhere Ltd [2011] EWHC 2016 (TCC) (validity of wireless telegraphy licences following Orange - T-Mobile merger)

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