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Joseph Curl


Joseph Curl specialises in commercial Chancery, with the emphasis on insolvency. He also practises in the areas of banking and financial services, civil fraud, mortgages and real property.

He is ranked as a leading junior in both the major legal directories.

Chambers UK 2015 notes he has:
“…developed a strong reputation as a technically adept and client-friendly junior…a good all-rounder, who provides excellent advice and presents very well on his feet… Expertise: ‘He provides advice in an extremely unstuffy manner, and has extremely good insolvency expertise.’ ‘He is clever, commercial and reliable.’”
The Legal 500 2014 states that he is:
"Able to handle instructions that would ordinarily need to be sent to counsel of considerably greater seniority."
Between 2001 and 2007, Joseph worked full-time in the insolvency department of DLA Piper UK LLP while undertaking both his BA and LLB degrees part-time.

He is also a tutor in Equity and Trusts at Birkbeck, University of London.

Recent reported cases

Re Mark Irwin Forstater
[2015] BPIR 21
A proposal for an individual voluntary arrangement was deemed rejected where the creditors’ meeting was improperly adjourned. Joseph represented the successful petitioning creditor.
Relfo Ltd (in liquidation) v Varsani
[2014] EWCA Civ 360, [2015] 1 BCLC 14
Joseph (led by Peter Shaw) represented the successful respondent to this appeal concerning laundering, tracing, knowing receipt and unjust enrichment. In an important judgment, Arden LJ held that money substitutions may be traced in equity even where they do not occur in chronological order.
Hellard and Wade (trustees of Mireskandari) v (1) Chadwick (trustee of Tehrani) (2) Jami Tehrani
[2014] BPIR 163 (first instance)
[2014] EWHC 2158 (Ch), [2014] BPIR 1234 (appeal)
Trustees in bankruptcy commenced transaction at undervalue proceedings against another bankruptcy estate. Joseph successfully persuaded the court at first instance and on appeal that the claim constituted a debt provable in the respondent estate and should be stayed.
Bramston v Riaz
[2014] BPIR 42
A rare reported use of s.342(1)(b) of the Insolvency Act 1986. The court declared that assets represented "the application" of a transaction at an undervalue and ordered that they be vested in a trustee in bankruptcy without further order. Joseph represented the successful trustee.
Credit Lucky Ltd v National Crime Agency
[2014] EWHC 83 (Ch), [2014] All ER (D) 235 (Jan) View decision
The director of a money transfer company believed to have been used by organised criminals to launder the proceeds of crime to China applied to rescind a winding up order. Barling J dismissed the application. Joseph represented the company's liquidator.
Re Harvest Finance Limited (in liquidation)
[2013] BPIR 1020
Detailed consideration of the jurisdiction to order disclosure against a company's former solicitors under sections 234 and 236 of the Insolvency Act 1986 in circumstances where a strong prima facie case of fraudulent conduct is established. Joseph represented the successful liquidators.
Hellard v Kapoor
[2013] EWHC 2204 (Ch), [2013] EWHC 2496 (Ch), [2013] BPIR 745 View decision
Joseph represented the successful trustee in bankruptcy in this fiercely contested application to suspend discharge, which raised complex issues concerning purported family trusts. Indemnity costs were awarded to Joseph's client.
Arif v Anwar
[2013] EWHC 624 (Fam), [2013] BPIR 389 View decision
The applicant wife challenged as shams trust arrangements between the husband and his son. Joseph successfully resisted an attempt by the husband and son (each separately represented by leading counsel) to exclude the husband's trustee in bankruptcy from the proceedings.

Selected publications

Tackling Laundering: the implications of Relfo Limited (in liquidation) v Varsani
International Corporate Rescue 2015, 12(3), 156-161

TOUSA: Reckless Restructuring
Corporate Rescue and Insolvency 2013, 6(1), 15

Bankrupting personal guarantors: recent developments
Insolvency Intelligence 2012, 25(2), 17-22

Challenging the trustee's remuneration: a new right for bankrupts?
Insolvency Intelligence 2011, 24(1), 5-10

The Spouse v the Creditors: A Turn Against Creditors?
Insolvency Intelligence 2010, 23(6), 81-87

"Use it or lose it": section 283A after Lewis v Metropolitan
Insolvency Intelligence 2010, 23(5), 74-76

A purposive approach to the rule against foreign revenue enforcement
International Corporate Rescue 2010, 7(2), 137-139

Who can apply to rescind a winding-up order?
Insolvency Intelligence 2009, 22(10), 145-147

Professional memberships

Chancery Bar Association
Proceeds of Crime Lawyers Association
Insolvency Lawyers Association


LLB (1st Class Honours) (London) - Law - 2006
BA (1st Class Honours) (London) - Politics, Philosophy & History - 2003

Scholarships and Prizes

Wolfson Pupillage Scholarship - Lincoln's Inn 2007
Lord Denning Major Scholarship - Lincoln's Inn 2006
Hardwicke Entrance Scholarship - Lincoln's Inn 2005
Cavendish Prize for Best Law Degree - Birkbeck, University of London 2006
Helena Kennedy Prize for Best Dissertation - Birkbeck, University of London 2006
Wildy's Bookshop Prize for Tort - Birkbeck, University of London 2005
Pearson Publication Prize for Contract - Birkbeck, University of London 2004
Ede & Ravenscroft Prize - Birkbeck, University of London 2002

Joseph Curl
Practice Areas
  • Corporate insolvency
  • Personal insolvency
  • Banking and mortgages
  • Real property
  • Landlord and tenant
  • Professional discipline, negligence and regulation
Leading Individual The Legal 500 - The Clients Guide to Law Firms

Call: 2007

Click here for printable cv

Joseph Curl is an independent self-employed barrister registered with the Bar Standards Board of England (ref. no 51595); whose practice is governed by the Code of Conduct of the Bar of England and Wales which code can be found at www.barstandardsboard.org.uk; has full professional liability insurance provided by the Bar Mutual Indemnity Fund Limited (ref BM 2930/056) (details of the world-wide cover are provided at www.barmutual.co.uk); is registered for VAT (reg. no. 938 9512 78); and can be contacted during chambers opening hours by telephone at 02074045055 or by e-mail at clerks@9stonebuildings.com.
ranked in chambers and partners

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