Philip Ridgway

Call: 1986    

Practice Overview

"Really user-friendly. He makes tax understandable and clients really warm to him. He's incredibly bright." "Very thorough and very proactive." - Chambers and Partners 2019: Tax (Ranked: Band 1)

"He is an authority on all things to do with reconstructions and insolvency" - Legal 500 2019 (Ranked: Tier 2)

"Has a broad corporate tax practice and is a noted expert on tax issues as they relate to insolvency cases" - Chambers and Partners 2015 - Tax

Expertise: "He is calm and decisive. He plans his strategy in advance, and always has a plan B. He has the ability to dissect an argument put forward by the opposition - he goes through it atom by atom and dismantles it piece by piece."

Recent work:He acted for the taxpayer in a case investigating the potential for an employee to make a loss and the question of whether this can be deducted from earnings. 


Philip joined chambers when he returned to the Bar in June 2007 and has already been recognised as a leading junior by Chambers and Partners Directory 2011 where he is described as:


   "a lawyer with a fantastic reputation in the M&A and restructuring  sector. "Incisive, proactive and always able to bring his intellect to bear in a practical way," he focuses on revenue law and has a particular expertise in corporate tax, insolvency and SDLT matters."


He advises on all areas of revenue law, both corporate and personal, but has a particular interest in corporate tax matters including, acquisitions and disposals, reconstructions and demergers, MBOs, returning capital to shareholders, s425 schemes, SDLT, stamp duty and SDRT.

Insolvency Tax
Philip has a special expertise in the taxation of insolvent companies, members' voluntary liquidations (including s110 schemes) and bankruptcy, and lectures regularly to R3 (formerly the Society of Practitioners of Insolvency) and is a member of the R3/HMRC liaison group which meet regularly to discuss issues of conflict between insolvency law and tax law.  Over the years he has been involved in advising on the tax aspects of some of the UK's major insolvencies including Maxwell, Pollypeck, BCCI, Olympia and York, Mayflower, ITVdigital, MFI, Allied Carpets, Borders, Farepak and Lehman Bros.  He is a Member of the Association of Business Recovery Professionals (MABRP) having passed the JIEB examinations.


Recent instructions in this area include:


  • the availability of group relief and consortium relief to a company in administration;


  • tax as an expense of administration;


  • the status of a payment made to an administrator for the termination of a supply contract;


  • whether VAT on rental payments was a fixed or floating charge asset and its status as an expense of administration;


  • the potential liability to, and the status of, an assessment under s190, TCGA 1992;


  • the availability of SDLT group relief to a company in administration and the liability for claw-back of SDLT group relief on disposals made by an administrator;


  • the liability of a liquidator for VAT on debts assigned to a factor before administration; and


  • the liability to tax on monies held by the Supervisor of a pre Enterprise Act administration CVA.


Philip represented the former administrators of DCC Realisations Ltd (in Liquidation) reported at[2009] EWHC 316 (Comm) a copy of the judgment can be found by clicking here.


To find out more about the Association of Business Recovery Professionals click here.


Following his call to the bar by Middle Temple in 1986 and pupilage in insolvency (3/4 South Square) and tax (Pump Court Tax Chambers) Philip joined Paisner & Co (now Berwin Leighton Paisner) before moving on to Allen & Overy.  In 1993 he joined Coopers & Lybrand and then in 1996 Deloitte, where he was made a corporate tax partner in 1999.  Philip believes that this broad experience of professional services firms enables him to understand the needs of both the lay client and instructing advisers and equips him to have a commercial approach to the problems they face.

Philip is a Fellow and Council member of the Chartered institute of Taxation, Past-Chairman of its education committee and a member of both the corporate and property technical committees.  He has also recently joined the Low Income Tax Reform Group (LITRG) committee and is a volunteer for Tax help for Older People (TOP) a registered charity which provides free advice to those over the age of 60 with incomes of less than £15,000 a year.


Philip is also a visiting lecturer at City University where he teaches International Tax on the Commercial Law LLM programme.


He is well known on the conference circuit and regularly lectures for MBL Seminars Ltd.  Topics he is currently lecturing on are (Click the title for further details):



Philip has written numerous articles some of which can be accessed below. 



He is co-author (with Tim Sanders) of Bloomsbury Professional's Tax Indemnities and Warranties.  Details of the 3rd edition can be found by clicking here.


He also contributes the tax chapter to both Lightman and Moss: The Law of Administrators and Receivers of Companies (4th ed.) and Totty and Moss: Insolvency and is a member of the editorial board of Insolvency Intelligence.  He has also contributed to the 5th edition of Whiteman and Sherry on Capital Gains Tax.


When he is not dealing with tax issues Philip follows the (mis)fortunes of Sheffield United and purports to play blues guitar although he accepts this is more likely to describe the effect on the listener than be a reference to the musical genre.