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Peter Taylor

Senior Partner - Commercial Disputes

My experience

Senior Partner Role

My primary role is senior partner of Paris Smith LLP. I am responsible for:

  • the firm’s brand;
  • contributing to the development of the firm’s strategy;
  • implementation of the firm’s strategy;
  • ensuring that the firm’s purpose is delivered in a manner which is relevant, responsive and reliable to the needs of our clients and communities;
  • inspiring those in the firm to achieve their full potential and feel happy and fulfilled;
  • building relationships with key stakeholders; and
  • ensuring the client experience is a positive one.

I also advise company directors and business leaders on strategy as well as being a mentor and sounding board.

Commercial Disputes Partner

In my role within the Commercial Disputes team I advise a range of companies and businesses in relation to:

  • strategic issues for directors;
  • contract disputes;
  • negligence actions;
  • professional negligence claims; and
  • insurance related litigation including coverage, material non- disclosure and fraud.

CEDR Accredited Mediator

I am also a CEDR accredited commercial mediator, assisting individuals and businesses to find solutions to disputes without the costs or limitations of a courtroom battle. I have experience in both representing parties at mediations and conducting the role of mediator.

My expertise encompasses a wide variety of cases including:

  • complex shareholder director issues;
  • negligence claims against solicitors, insurance brokers, builders, architects, insurance issues of coverage, indemnity and fraud;
  • business disputes including commercial contracts, employment contracts and breach of restrictive covenants;
  • construction and building projects related disputes; and
  • landlord and tenant litigation.

External Roles

Outside of Paris Smith I hold the following roles:

  • Chairman of the leadership team of the Southampton Chamber of Commerce
  • President and Non-Executive Director of Hampshire Chamber of Commerce
  • Vice chairman of the Board of Governors of a Prep School
  • Accredited commercial mediator

I am regularly asked to speak at business conferences on topical business and leadership issues.

Business leader of the year 2020

We are delighted to announce that Peter won Business Leader of the Year in the 2020 South Coast Business Awards.

Insights from Peter Taylor

Peter Taylor | 13th August 2019

How To Resolve Commercial Disputes Without Going To Court


Peter Taylor | 13th August 2019

How To Resolve Commercial Disputes Without Going To Court

How do you settle commercial disputes without going to court? Mediation can hold the key. In his latest podcast, Managing Partner Peter Taylor explains what mediation is and how it applies to commercial disputes.

Show notes:
00:28 What is mediation? Peter defines what happens
01:00 How successful is mediation statistically and what is the role of the nominated mediator?
01:27 Mediation can be particularly useful when parties need to maintain a relationship. Peter talks through when this might be the case
01:43 Peter talks about the wider benefits of mediation as opposed to the courts.
02:26 What happens if a dispute is not settled in a mediation?
02:49 Are there any disadvantages to mediation?
03:42 What is the process in mediation? Peter explains the stages which parties go through step by step
05:55 What happens when a settlement is agreed? When is this legally binding?
06:58 What does a settlement through mediation feel like?


How I’ve helped our clients

Peter has a very approachable manner and is skilled in quickly understanding the technicalities of any issue.  His advice is clear, concise and importantly,  understandable to the lay person.  He is not afraid to give reasoned opinions to outcomes, which we find refreshing and very valuable.  So much time and money can be saved with clear advice from the outset.  He has a well-balanced team spanning a wide breadth of expertise for us to draw on.  He is engaging and fun to work with and I would highly recommend him and the Paris Smith team.

Gail Thomas, MD - TW Metals
TW Metals

My company, Barfoots of Botley, has used the services of Paris Smith for at least twenty years.  Paris Smith have advised and acted for us in various aspects of the law that have arisen during the process of running our business. What drew us to build our relationship with Paris Smith was and is the personal service and excellent relationship management that is offered by Peter Taylor. Peter remains in regular contact with myself and senior directors of our business.  His understanding of our business and relationship with us enables him to direct us to whichever colleague/partner of his firm is best suited to our needs at that time. This relationship management is something we had not experienced previously, it was normally a case of “when needed give us a ring”.  Not always the best way to solve a problem. Peter’s association with us, insight into our business and rapport with our senior members of the team, mean that our legal requirements are always dealt with professionally, by an expert in that particular aspect of law, whenever required, and as a result we are never tempted to go elsewhere for advice.

Peter Barfoot CBE, Chairman - Barfoots

Peter Taylor is a character that I personally have very high regard for, and at a moment’s notice you can ask Peter for his honest and professional opinion no matter what the subject matter may be. Peter will always listen to both sides being very open minded and thoughtful in his decision process. I would highly recommend both Peter and Paris Smith.

Carl Richards - Focal Point Fires plc
Focal Point Fires

Noted as a leader in his field for liability claims, professional negligence and contractual disputes. Described by one client as “very knowledgeable and very communicative”. Another source states he is “a highly skilled litigator and negotiator”.

Chambers & Partners Legal Directory 2021