Nicholas Iles has practised commercial litigation, both in Australia and England, for over 30 years. Originally articled at a predecessor firm to Piper Alderman, he later spent ten years as a Partner in that firm’s commercial litigation section, working closely with Charles Bagot and Tony Abbott AM.
Between 1987 and 1990, he worked in London, first with Linklaters & Paines (under Terence Kyle and Christopher Style QC) and later in a specialist professional indemnity insurance firm, Squire & Co, assisting the firm’s principal, Nick Squire, in a range of financial services sector and professional indemnity matters, as well as acting for a Lloyd’s syndicate in a long running trans-national reinsurance dispute.
Graduating with First Class Honours in law from both the Universities of Adelaide (LLB (Hons), 1984) and Cambridge (LLM, 1987), Nicholas is an Honorary Senior Scholar and College Prizeman of Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge. Before leaving for England, Nicholas was the Research Assistant to the then Solicitor-General for South Australia, Malcolm Gray QC (later Justice Gray of the ACT Supreme Court).
Nicholas practises widely in commercial litigious disputes, including contractual, company, partnership, general tortious and public law matters. However, he maintains a particular interest in professional indemnity litigation, being a panel solicitor to the Law Society of South Australia’s Professional Indemnity Insurance Scheme and a long-standing advisor and panel solicitor to South Australia’s leading medical indemnity insurer, Medical Insurance Group Australia. In the latter capacity, Nicholas has represented medical practitioners in a wide range of medical malpractice and disciplinary matters. In addition, he is often asked to act for members of both the legal and medical professions in their professional and personal matters.
In each of the two major Royal Commissions in South Australia in the 1990s – the State Bank Royal Commission and the Hindmarsh Island Bridge Royal Commission – Nicholas worked closely with Michael Abbott AO QC, with whom he worked again in the course of the ten year Emanuel Group litigation, representing the partners of a major Adelaide law firm. More recently, he led the defence of the former partners of Magarey Farlam Lawyers in the matter of a multi-million dollar trust account defalcation.
Nicholas has appeared or instructed in every Court in South Australia, including in the High Court of Australia in respect of two major constitutional challenges.
Nicholas as been consistently ranked “Pre-eminent” in commercial litigation and dispute resolution in South Australia by Doyles Guide and ranked nationally by the same publication. He has been similarly ranked by Doyles in the field of professional indemnity.
A member of the Council and Executive of the Law Society of South Australia between 1996 and 2003, Nicholas was the Law Society’s Treasurer in 2001-2. He spent eight years on the Council of Anglicare SA through a period of rapid growth. He remains a trusted legal advisor to the Adelaide Diocese of the Anglican Church on a range of legal matters, including representing the Diocese at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. In March 2013, Nicholas was appointed Chancellor of the Diocese of Willochra.