Areas of Expertise

Michelle Caney is a specialist chancery and commercial practitioner, with a particular focus on property litigation.

Michelle has a strong reputation in the field and is consistently recommended in the directories, which praise her “superb technical knowledge, confident authoritative manner with clients, and brilliant cross-examination”.  Recognised as being an “outstanding and tenacious advocate”, Michelle fights her client’s corner robustly, whilst managing their expectations sensitively.  Michelle has extensive experience and is regularly instructed in complex, high value litigation above her level of call.

In addition to her court work, Michelle has a busy paperwork practice and is commended for her immaculate preparation and “thorough grasp of every detail” of each case.  In an advisory capacity, Michelle is commercial and pragmatic, always keeping her client’s key objectives and proportionality at the forefront of her mind.

Michelle’s areas of expertise include:

Chancery:

  • Adverse possession
  • Boundary disputes
  • Easements
  • Nuisance
  • Restrictive covenants
  • Rectification claims
  • Trespass
  • Trusts of land and equitable interests
  • Professional negligence

Commercial:

  • Banking and finance
  • Contractual disputes
  • Construction claims, including Asbestos related litigation
  • Business lease renewals and terminations
  • Forfeiture
  • Dilapidations
  • Partnership disputes
  • Mortgages and guarantees

Recommendations

Legal 500 2017:  “Beneath her cool, calm exterior is a fiery, formidable opponent.”

Legal 500 2017: “She makes vulnerable witnesses feel at ease.”

Chambers and Partners 2017: “Superb advocate with extremely detailed preparation in trials.” “She’s forensic in preparation, goes way above and beyond and has an utterly thorough grasp of every detail of the case.”

Legal 500 2016: “An excellent advocate, who is well respected by judges.”

Chambers and Partners 2016: “Superb technical knowledge, confident authoritative manner with clients, and brilliant cross-examination.” “She is incredibly conscientious. Nothing gets past her gaze.”

Legal 500 2015: “Her advocacy and cross-examination skills are superb.” “She is always incredibly well prepared for conferences and hearings.”

Chambers and Partners 2015: “She is an excellent advocate. She doesn’t miss anything, and she puts up a very good fight.” “She is an absolute professional, is always well prepared and always manages to know how to treat difficult defendants.”

Chambers & Partners 2014: “She is incredibly efficient and extremely organised.” “She is exceptionally thorough and knows her stuff inside out.”

Legal 500 2014: “She has wide-ranging commercial and Chancery expertise.”

Chambers & Partners 2014: “She listens to her clients carefully and does what they want her to do. She will fight tooth and nail if she feels it is a good case to argue.” “Technically she is excellent, but she is also down to earth, which is crucial with social housing.”

Chambers and Partners 2013: “Michelle is an outstanding and tenacious advocate respected by judges. She is able to quickly build rapport with clients, witnesses and instructing solicitors.”

Legal 500 2012: St Ives Chambers is “an excellent specialist housing set”.  Michelle Caney is “well prepared, eloquent and persuasive.”

Legal 500 2011: St Ives Chambers’ leading housing law team includes Michelle Caney, who is “hugely talented”, “consistently excellent and utterly reliable”, and is praised for her “immaculate preparation.”

Legal 500 2010: Michelle Caney, “an incredibly dedicated, hardworking and gifted” junior, is “down to earth, practical and excellent in both court and negotiations.”

Notable cases

Midland Heart Limited v. Grant [2016] 

Appeal concerning the correct application of the refined test set out by the Supreme Court in Akerman-Liverstone v. Aster Communities Limited [2015] UKSC 15 where a landlord is asking a court to summarily dismiss a disability discrimination defence.

(1) Rehman and (1) Rehman v. Ali and Others [2015] EWHC

High Court claim concerning the ownership of a Mosque, which was alleged to be held on a charitable trust for the benefit of the community.  Michelle successfully represented the legal owners and secured a possession order following a 17 day trial.

Dunn v. (1) Katerina Allington T/A Property Pushers and (2) Property Pushers Limited [2014] EWHC –

Complex commercial trial in the High Court involving a property development company in which Michelle secured judgment in excess of £740,000.

Wolverhampton City Council v. Shuttleworth [2012] LTL 13/12/2013

Michelle successfully appealed to the High Court on a novel point of law concerning introductory tenancies.

Arena Coventry Limited v. Coventry City Football Club Limited [2012]

High profile litigation in the High Court involving Coventry City Football Club.

Leeds and Yorkshire Housing Association v Vertigan [2010] EWCA Civ 1583 

Michelle successfully opposed an appeal to the Court of Appeal in an important case concerning the interplay between undertakings and suspended possession orders.


Michelle Caney is a specialist property practitioner with a national reputation and extensive experience in the field of social housing.

Michelle is routinely praised for her meticulous preparation and is consistently recommended in the directories, which confirm that she is “exceptionally thorough and knows her stuff inside out” and commend her “superb technical knowledge, confident authoritative manner with clients, and brilliant cross-examination.”  Michelle prides herself on maintaining a client-focused approach at all times.

Michelle’s expertise covers the full range of housing litigation, with a particular emphasis on cases involving issues of human rights, mental capacity, disability discrimination, community care or judicial review.  Her busy practice encompasses:

  • Possession claims
  • Demotion claims
  • Injunctions/committals
  • Community care issues
  • Disability discrimination
  • Human rights/public law challenges
  • Homelessness and Allocations
  • Harassment claims
  • Unlawful eviction
  • Right to buy
  • Succession
  • Service charge disputes
  • Disrepair
  • Judicial review

Recommendations

Legal 500 2017:  “Beneath her cool, calm exterior is a fiery, formidable opponent.”

Legal 500 2017: “She makes vulnerable witnesses feel at ease.”

Chambers and Partners 2017: “Superb advocate with extremely detailed preparation in trials.” “She’s forensic in preparation, goes way above and beyond and has an utterly thorough grasp of every detail of the case.”

Chambers and Partners 2016: “Superb technical knowledge, confident authoritative manner with clients, and brilliant cross-examination.” “She is incredibly conscientious. Nothing gets past her gaze.”

Legal 500 2015: “Her advocacy and cross-examination skills are superb.” “She is always incredibly well prepared for conferences and hearings.”

Chambers and Partners 2015: “She is an excellent advocate. She doesn’t miss anything, and she puts up a very good fight.” “She is an absolute professional, is always well prepared and always manages to know how to treat difficult defendants.”

Chambers & Partners 2014: “She is incredibly efficient and extremely organised.” “She is exceptionally thorough and knows her stuff inside out.”

Legal 500 2014: “She has wide-ranging commercial and Chancery expertise.”

Chambers & Partners 2014: “She listens to her clients carefully and does what they want her to do. She will fight tooth and nail if she feels it is a good case to argue.” “Technically she is excellent, but she is also down to earth, which is crucial with social housing.”

Chambers and Partners 2013: “Michelle is an outstanding and tenacious advocate respected by judges. She is able to quickly build rapport with clients, witnesses and instructing solicitors.”

Legal 500 2012: St Ives Chambers is “an excellent specialist housing set”.  Michelle Caney is “well prepared, eloquent and persuasive.”

Legal 500 2011: St Ives Chambers’ leading housing law team includes Michelle Caney, who is “hugely talented”, “consistently excellent and utterly reliable”, and is praised for her “immaculate preparation.”

Legal 500 2010: Michelle Caney, “an incredibly dedicated, hardworking and gifted” junior, is “down to earth, practical and excellent in both court and negotiations.”

Notable cases

Midland Heart Limited v. Grant [2016] 

Appeal concerning the correct application of the refined test set out by the Supreme Court in Akerman-Liverstone v. Aster Communities Limited [2015] UKSC 15 where a landlord is asking a court to summarily dismiss a disability discrimination defence.

(1) Rehman and (1) Rehman v. Ali and Others [2015] EWHC

High Court claim concerning the ownership of a Mosque, which was alleged to be held on a charitable trust for the benefit of the community.  Michelle successfully represented the legal owners and secured a possession order following a 17 day trial.

Dunn v. (1) Katerina Allington T/A Property Pushers and (2) Property Pushers Limited [2014] EWHC

Complex commercial trial in the High Court involving a property development company in which Michelle secured judgment in excess of £740,000.

Wolverhampton City Council v. Shuttleworth [2012] LTL 13/12/2013

Michelle successfully appealed to the High Court on a novel point of law concerning introductory tenancies.

Arena Coventry Limited v. Coventry City Football Club Limited [2012]

High profile litigation in the High Court involving Coventry City Football Club.

Leeds and Yorkshire Housing Association v Vertigan [2010] EWCA Civ 1583

Michelle successfully opposed an appeal to the Court of Appeal in an important case concerning the interplay between undertakings and suspended possession orders.


Qualifications

Birmingham University, LLB (Hons) Law.

Nottingham School of Law, BVC.

Memberships

Property Bar Association

Midland Circuit

Social Housing Law Association

Awards and Scholarships

Ede & Ravenscroft Prize – Winner, Middle Temple Mooting Competition 2004

Mooting Holiday to Malibu – Finalist, Middle Temple Mooting Competition 2004

Harmsworth Scholarship – Middle Temple 2004 Blackstones Entrance Exhibition –

Middle Temple 2004 Campbell Foster Prize – Middle Temple 2003

Simmons & Simmons Commercial Law Prize – Birmingham University 2003

Mistress of the Moots – Finalist, Camm Cup Mooting Competition 2002

Further Information

Seminars and Training

Michelle regularly presents seminars and lectures within her areas of expertise.  Such talks can be arranged via the clerks and can be presented at the dedicated facilities within chambers or externally. CPD approval can be obtained if required.

Relevant Articles

  • Service Charges in Commercial Leases: “Key Principles of Construction and Operation” by Michelle Caney

    Michelle Caney has written an article for the Property Ligitation Association on the Construction and Operation of Service Charge Caluses in Commercial leases –...

    Read more

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