CMS construction disputes head quits for Atkin Chambers

CMS Cameron McKenna construction disputes head Rupert Choat is moving back to Atkin Chambers full time on 1 March 2014.

The partner and solicitor advocate was made CMS head of construction disputes in 2011 and is deputy head of the real estate and construction sector.

He joined CMS 13 years ago after beginning his career at the bar. He joined the partnership in 2007 in a 10-strong promotions round, one of the first to be voted into the non-equity tier introduced that year.

Choat has maintained strong links with the chambers since joining private practice fifteen years ago and will continue to work with CMS on various cases.

He said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed a fulfilling career as a solicitor advocate, however, the draw of the bar has never quite left me. The fact that I am going back to Atkin Chambers, where it all began for me is very fitting. I will be among familiar faces and the set is, of course, an excellent fit for my practice.” 

Choat appeared in court several times with CMS as an advocate in 2013 to represent power plant Mabe Chile Limitada in its battle with a British energy company. In 2012 he also joined construction set Keating Chambers’ David Thomas QC in its claim over a bond paid for building work left unfinished following the collapse of a contractor.

He practises as an arbitrator as well as an advocate, and has been involved in projects in over 40 countries worldwide to date.

Choat joins the set a year after it appointed its first chief executive after a year-long search in 2012. Geoff Smith took on the role after six years as group operations director at public relations company Bell Pottinger (25 September 2012).