Linklaters denies City trader his bonus

Linklaters has claimed Court of Appeal victory for Commerzbank in an acrimonious dispute over the multi-million pound bonuses paid to a trader.

This morning (17 November) Lord Justices Mummery, Jacob and Moses dismissed the claim brought by former trader James Keen against the bank.

Keen claimed that the bank’s decision to award him bonuses of $2.8m (£1.5m) and $2.95m (£1.6m) in respect of the 2003 and 2004 financial years was “irrational and peverse” and he should have been paid more.

In addition he said he should have received a bonus for 2005, and that the bank was in breach of contract by not paying it, despite the fact that his employment was terminated in June 2005.

In April 2006 Mr Justice Morison dismissed Commerzbank’s attempts to have the claims struck out.

But the Court of Appeal found for the bank, saying that because Keen was not claiming breach of contract for the 2003 and 2004 bonuses it would be difficult to prove his claim in law. The court also struck out the 2005 claim.

Linklaters managing associates Paul Quain and Nicola Rabson acted for Commerzbank, instructing Essex Court Chambers’ Andrew Hochhauser QC.

City litigation and employment boutique Ferguson Solicitors acted for Keen, instructing 3/4 South Square’s Robin Knowles QC. Ferguson is also acting for a Nomura banker in a similar case.