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Thomas Donegan

Partner

Thomas has broad financial regulatory experience, which includes advising on strategic and structuring matters, regulatory authorisations and licensing, change of control, regulatory capital, regulated activities and cross-jurisdictional customer access, compliance and anti-money-laundering policies and procedures, custody, prime brokerage, trading, derivatives, banking, treasury, clearing, settlement and trade execution and client terms of business.

He also has a contentious practice, advising on regulatory investigations, enforcement, anti-money laundering and sanctions issues, incident response (e.g., AML. Sanctions, cyber) and financial services disputes work.

He advises a broad spectrum of financial institutions, including most of the world’s major banks, as well as leading brokers, dealers, investment or portfolio managers, fund managers, insurers, exchanges, clearing houses and settlement systems. He also advises participants in such markets such as corporates and end-users.

Thomas's experience has included advising clients on dealing with the implementation and impact of the EU/UK regulatory reforms (e.g., EMIR, MiFID II, capital, recovery & resolution, governance, ESG and corporate sustainability legislation, bank ring-fencing, anti-money laundering issues) and the challenges posed by Brexit. Thomas's practice has won numerous awards, recently being “Highly Recommended” in the FT European Innovative Lawyers Awards, 2023 and being named “regulatory team of the year” numerous times by IFLR, British Legal Awards and others.

Experience

Representative matters

Highlights

Société Générale on its two new joint ventures with Alliance Bernstein for their equity research and securities brokerage businesses, closing 2024.

Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) in its establishment of ICE Clear Europe as the first new derivatives clearing house in London since 1880 and its acquisition of the New York Stock Exchange, among others. Awarded “Most Innovative work by a Law Firm” in the field of exchange-traded or centrally cleared derivatives by FOW 2009 and Structured Finance/Debt Capital Markets Team of the Year by Legal Business, 2010. Awarded “Financial Regulation Team of the Year” by IFLR Europe Awards, 2014.

Investors in London Capital & Finance plc on their striving for compensation, including upheld complaints against the FCA, on the Dame Gloster review into regulatory failure by the Financial Conduct Authority and in relation to the ad hoc compensation scheme ultimately established under the Compensation (London Capital & Finance plc and Fraud) Act 2022. “Highly Recommended”, FT European Innovative Lawyers Awards, 2023. Won “Law Firm of the Year”, Peer2Peer Finance Awards, 2023.

Pro bono

Thomas actively advises and supports various biodiversity conservation and biological research charities in the UK and abroad on legal and operational matters.

London Capital & Finance investors on their struggle for compensation (see above under Contentious regulatory).

Published Work

  • Donegan T., Swil J., Johnston T., Matthews J. and Barrowman C.), (2023) “The Effect of Contractual Unfairness Under the Consumer Rights Act 2015 on the Transferability of Bonds Following the High Court’s Decision in R. (Donegan) v Financial Services Compensation Scheme”, London: JIBLR 
  • Donegan T. and Barrowman C., (2023) “London Capital & Finance Plc—Was It a Collective Scheme?”, London: JIBLR 
  • Donegan T., Swil J. and Barrowman C., (2023) “The UK’s Last Asserted Francovich Claim? On the Regulation of Non-transferable Bonds and the Legal Backdrop to the UK Government’s Compensation of London Capital & Finance Investors”, London: JIBLR 
  • Letherman S., Donegan T. and Barrowman C., (2023) “London Capital & Finance Plc—A Spotlight on the ISA Regulations and the Need for Reform”, London: JIBLR

Speaking Engagements

  • Guest Speaker, Sanctions seminar, EMTA, September 2023
  • Guest Speaker, Preparing for FCA Cryptoassets Financial Promotion Rules, Innovate Finance, July 2023
  • Guest Speaker, Inflation, Volatility, Clearing and the Gilt Crash, FOW Trading London, December 2022
  • Presenter, Navigating the Russian Sanctions Regime, LexisNexis, March 2022

Leadership Positions And Professional Affiliations

  • Member, Financial Markets Law Committeeʼs Banking Scoping Forum and Financial Markets Infrastructure Scoping Forum
  • Participant on regulatory affairs working group of Futures Industry Association and various CityUK, UK Finance, ISDA and AIMA working groups
Recognition
Thomas Donegan always manages to provide a high level of client service, combined with sophisticated advice, that still contains a great deal of commercial awareness and practicality.
Chambers UK, 2024
He is a very good listener and is very helpful in finding a reliable solution to a challenging issue.” And “He is razor sharp.
Chambers UK, 2024

Awards

  • Numerous legal industry awards for regulatory team of the year or law firm of the year (see above under specific client matters)
  • Ranked for 6 years for Chambers UK 2018–2024
  • “Leading Individual” for both Financial Services: Non-Contentious and Financial Services: Contentious, Legal 500 UK, 2023. Also mentioned for Insurance: Corporate & Regulatory, Legal 500 UK, 2023 

Qualifications

Admissions

Practising Certificate (England & Wales), 2007

Law Society of England & Wales, 2003

Academic

B.A., Law, Christ’s College, University of Cambridge, 1999

LPC, Legal Practice Course, Nottingham Law School, 2000

M.A. Law, Christ’s College, University of Cambridge, 2003

PhD, Christ’s College, University of Cambridge, 2021

Languages

English (fluent), Spanish (fluent), Portuguese (basic), French (written)