Ben holds a Bachelor of Laws and a Master of Laws (commercial law) and was first called to the private Bar in 1999 after practising for several years as a litigation lawyer with particular interests in resolving legal disputes involving the agribusiness, construction, engineering, and resource sectors. Ben has a unique understanding of the Engineering Construction, Mining and Resources area having having worked as a qualified electrical fitter mechanic with BHP prior to coming to the Bar.
Since coming to the Bar in 1999, Ben has developed a broad commercial and equity practice with a wealth of experience and particular expertise in the resolution of commercial litigation and insurance disputes, primarily involving construction and engineering disputes and related professional negligence matters, major project and infrastructure disputes, agribusiness and resources liability insurance and contract claims, directors liability and shareholder disputes, corporate insolvency, and property and estate disputes.
Ben has been recognised in Doyle’s Guide as a Leading Construction & Infrastructure Counsel – Queensland in 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023. He is an active member of a number of relevant professional associations, including BDPS, CLA, ER Law, AILA and SoCLA, as well as being a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and an interstate member of the Melbourne Technology Engineering and Construction Chambers (MTECC).
Ben is also an NMAS qualified mediator and holds chambers in both Brisbane and Melbourne.
Ben has particular experience in the following areas:
- large scale infrastructure projects:
- including Curtis Island (Gladstone LNG development), Brisbane City South State Secondary College, Sarina Hospital, Ferny Grove transport and retail centre project, sewage treatment plant for a remote school, Ipswich roads and related pipeline construction.
- resource, agricultural and industrial projects, including:
- commercial contract issues over the sale of a Bowen Basin coal mine, the construction of shipping berth and pier for LNG export, multiple underground drilling in Central and Western Queensland large scale cattle properties, hire and supply of agricultural plant and equipment, slab defects in large scale industrial sheds and workshops, and defect claims on high-rise cranes and other construction plant.
- large scale commercial and residential construction projects including:
- high rise office and apartment complexes, earthworks and subsidence in residential, commercial, and industrial property developments, multiple service stations in Queensland and Victoria.
- significant commercial and related property litigation issues including:
- easements disputes, access agreements for construction projects for cranes and rock anchors, road and private access issues for large scale commercial developments (appearing in the High Court).
- statutory demands, winding up applications, preference claims, insolvent trading, uncommercial transactions, and proof of debt insolvency matters, both moderate and large involving many millions of dollars in dispute, acting for liquidators and administrators.
- numerous estate administration and significant family provision applications.
- defects and causation issues arising from large scale and catastrophic failures in the agricultural, construction, engineering, resources, and transport sectors and critical analysis and testing of architectural, engineering, building, quantity surveying, delay and programming, geotechnical, hydrological, accounting and historian expert evidence.
- numerous matters involving the interpretation and application of Security of Payment legislation, Subcontractors Charges legislation and QBCC and related legislation.
- proper interpretation and application of contested contracts of engagement, joint venture, supply, security and credit in the agricultural, construction, engineering, resource and transport sectors.
- conducting (often leading junior barristers) complex and large-scale multi-party litigation and alternative dispute resolution processes including settling pleadings, settling lay and expert evidence, appearing on contested applications, trials and appeals in the Queensland Court of Appeal.