Michael Shepherd


Michael advises the firm’s key international clients and their senior executives on their most significant disputes and regulatory investigations.

His practice focuses on complex, high stakes commercial litigation, class actions and contentious regulatory matters. Michael has represented multi-national corporations and global financial institutions in high profile trials and investigations in Australia, the U.S. and Asia, regularly advises clients in relation to investigations and enforcement actions brought by ASIC and the ACCC.

Qualified to practice in both Australia and New York, and having spent six years litigating in New York with a leading U.S. firm, Michael has particular expertise in managing cross-border disputes. His cross border regulatory experience includes dealings with key U.S., European and Asian financial services and anti-trust agencies. Michael has been consistently recognised for his work by leading legal directories.


Representative matters

Successfully acted for the former Chief Financial Officer of Rio Tinto in relation to proceedings brought by ASIC against him, Rio Tinto, and its former Chief Executive Officer for breach of directors’ duties and market disclosure obligations. The proceedings were prosecuted simultaneously with related proceedings brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission in the Southern District of New York.

A portfolio company of Bain Capital in high-profile litigation relating to the Only About Children Childcare Centres. After fiercely contested allegations and counterclaims, reaching a settlement that was favourable to our client, avoiding further court action.
Successfully represented Global Advanced Metals in resisting a shareholder derivative suit in relation to the sale of the Wodgina lithium mine, including allegations that the directors breached their duties by selling the mine at under value.
Lanco in the successful representation of proceedings brought against the administrators of the Griffin Coal mine arising from the sale process for Griffin Coal.

A global investment bank for a class action filed in the Federal Court of Australia in relation to allegations of collusion among five defendant banks to rig FX rates during 2008 – 2013.

The Sage Group on the successful defence of an AUD200m damages claim brought by Archer Capital arising out of the sale of MYOB

Reckitt (formerly Reckitt Benckiser) in a successful defence of a class action brought by purchasers of Reckitt’s Nurofen Specific Pain Range Product claiming in excess of AUD10



Admitted as a solicitor in New South Wales, Australia, 2001

Admitted to practice in the Supreme Court of New York, U.S.A. 2007

Admitted to practice in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, U.S.A 2007

Admitted to practice in the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, U.S.A 2011


BCL, Oxford University, 2004

Bachelor of Laws, (First Class Hons), University of Sydney, 2000

Bachelor of Arts, (First Class Hons), University of Western Australia, 1997

A&O Shearman was formed on May 1, 2024 by the combination of Shearman & Sterling LLP and Allen & Overy LLP and their respective affiliates (the legacy firms). Any matters referred to above may include matters undertaken by one or more of the legacy firms rather than A&O Shearman.