- Practice Groups
- 1988 Called to the Bar
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Michael is a property/landlord and tenant specialist. His practice is exclusively property or property-related, with a particular emphasis on residential and commercial landlord and tenant (including enfranchisement) and real property disputes. Clients include some of the large London Estates, large developer clients and established housing associations as well as other commercial and individual clients.
Solicitor clients include City/West End firms with specialist property/landlord and tenant/enfranchisement departments and other niche property firms.
Michael has been ranked in the main directories as a leading barrister in real estate since 2004. He has been given some of the more memorable “compliments” by his peers and/or solicitors acting in this field including:
Sources admire his hard-hitting style of advocacy,noting that "he doesn't take any prisoners in court" (Chambers & Partners)
"A tough pitbull of a barrister who is perfect for the more difficult cases" (Chambers & Partners)
"The Daniel Craig of the property bar – bright, articulate, tough" (Legal 500)
Michael has broad experience in property and landlord and tenant matters. He often acts in 'high value' litigation particularly in respect of enfranchisement and real property matters.
Recent reported cases include:
Guy Ritche v Persons Unknown Chancery List Central London County Court 17.2.11 and 25.2.11 Whilst not reported in the technical sense this case gained wide press coverage. Following on from Michael’s squatter’s case concerning the “Park Lane squatters” Michael was instructed on behalf of Mr Guy Ritchie to regain possession of his Grade 1 listed London home. The case was one of some urgency as there was concern for safety of some of the period features. Time was abridged and swift interim and final orders were obtained
Zonzeo Limited v Persons unknown 23.1.09 and 28.1.09 Chancery list Central London County CourtThis case concerned the "Park Lane Squatters" occupying two adjoining mansion houses in Park Lane London worth several million pounds a piece. Instructed on the Friday, Michael immediately attended court and obtained an abridgement of time. The hearing took place the following Wednesday when an order was made. The high court sheriff (on Michael's advice) was lined up to evict and did so that afternoon. Obtaining actual possession of residential property within 6 days from start to finish was something of a first for Michael.
Volosinovici v Corvan Properties Limited (Lands Tribunal)  LTLAn appeal (where Michael did not appear below) concerning the jurisdiction of the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal to strike out a case for abuse of process
Marine Court (St Leonards on sea) Freehold Limited v Rother District Investments County Court  2 EG 148A case concerning whether or not a large building on the South Coast did not qualify for enfranchisement purposes by reason of the percentage of non-residential accommodation. Although only at County Court level, this is the leading decision on this issue.
Recent Ongoing Cases:
With the changes in the economic climate whilst Michael continues to be instructed in enfranchisement matters, he has seen a noticeable increase in instructions in more traditional areas of work including disputes concerning sale contracts and dilapidations claims. Ongoing cases include:
Cadogan Estate v Trumann Hooldings LimitedInstructed by Pemberton Greenish in a high value lease extension claim concerning a flat overlooking Cadogan Square. A decision is awaited.
Voyazides v The Trusteees of the Eyre EstateInstructed on behalf of the Eyre Estate in the appeal in the Lands Chamber of the Upper Tribunal resisting the tenant’s appeal. The premium determined by the LVT under the 1967 Act for a house in the prestigious Avenue Road was in excess of £7m and was exactly the figure that the Estate was arguing for. The tenant was it is assumed unhappy with this and obtained permission to appeal. There is to be a re-hearing in the Lands Tribunal at some stage in 2012.
Voyvoda v 32 Grosvenor Square LimitedLed by Philip Rainey QC in this high value lease extension concerning a huge flat in Grosvenor Square.
Landlord and tenant
Michael is instructed on various commercial and residential landlord and tenant matters. He is involved in dilapidations claims including one where the sum claimed by the landlord is in excess of £3m. Like other members of chambers Michael has a number of ongoing service charge disputes.
Clark Investments limited v Pacific Technologies LinitedAn interest case fixed for trial in the Chancery list at Central London concerning notice to complete and the impact of a party’s failure to comply with its own notice. The added ingredient in this case bound to complicate matters is Mark Dencer of Tanfield Chambers who is on the other side!
Michael is regularly instructed on behalf of developer clients concerning existing and future contracts/acquisitions. Ongoing matters include issues concerning overage and restrictive covenants with the sums at stake being in excess of £2m. They are by their nature confidential.
Harrods Limited and ors v CAFT and others 2011Michael rarely strays from property related work. The exception over the last few years is his involvement with protestor cases. Those that are not confidential include obtaining injunctions for Harrods concerning the activities of anti fur protestors and obtaining an injunction for an academy school against a former parent. Michael always manages to include a property angle in these cases which on occasions has wrong-footed his opponents who were expecting arguments only about freedom of speech and Human Rights.
Contributor, Service Charges and Managment: Law & Practice 2nd edition (Sweet & Maxwell)
Contributor, Service Charges and Management; Law and Practice 1st Edition 2006 (Sweet & Maxwell)
Member, Property Bar Association
Member, Chancery Bar Association
Michael is listed as a Leader in the field for real estate litigation in Chambers UK from 2004 to date.
Michael Buckpitt's abilities were illustrated in high-profile fashion with his instruction to evict squatters who had settled in the home of film director Guy Ritchie. The core of his property practice is commercial and residential landlord and tenant matters, and he is especially good on leasehold enfranchisement. Sources admire his hard-hitting style of advocacy, noting that "he doesn't take any prisoners in court."
Chambers UK 2013
'A tough pitbull of a barrister who is perfect for the more difficult cases'
Chambers UK 2011
'Michael Buckpitt is admired for identifying the crux of a case quickly, and remaining sensitive to client concerns'
Chambers UK 2010
Chambers UK 2009
'A good property barrister and a fantastic courtroom operator'
Chambers UK 2008
'Recommended for his strong cross examination skills'
Chambers UK 2007
'personable and very bright'
Chambers UK 2006
'Helpful and knowledgeable'
Chambers UK 2005
'A clever practitioner who rolls up his sleeves and gets on with the job'
Chambers UK 2004
Michael is listed as a leading junior for property litigation in The Legal 500 from 2006 to date.
Leading junior Michael Buckpitt, whose written advocacy "stands up very well".
Legal 500 2012
'User-friendly and practical'
Legal 500 2010
Legal 500 2009
'The Daniel Craig of the property bar – bright, articulate, tough'
Legal 500 2007
'Hands on and down to earth'
Legal 500 2006
Michael is listed as an expert in property litigation in Legal Experts 2008, 2009 and 2010.