London Elite Take Lead Roles on U.K. Side of Lehman Bankruptcy

, Legal Week

A raft of U.K. firms have landed top roles advising on Lehman Brothers' bankruptcy filing.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Linklaters, Clifford Chance and Lovells have all won roles advising on U.K. aspects of proceedings after Lehman filed for Chapter 11 Sunday in New York.

U.S. firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges is advising Lehman Brothers in New York, with corporate chief Thomas Roberts and restructuring partner Harvey Miller thought to be advising the bank on the bankruptcy proceedings.

In the U.K., Linklaters is advising administrators PricewaterhouseCoopers, with restructuring Chief Tony Bugg, banking partner Richard Holden and private equity partner David Ereira leading.

Freshfields is advising the Bank of England on U.K. regulatory aspects of the deal, with restructuring partner Nick Segal and finance partner Michael Raffan taking lead roles.

Raffan also headed the Freshfields team advising the Bank of England on Northern Rock's 50 billlion pound liquidity support program earlier this year.

The Financial Services Authority has also drafted in legal support with a team from Lovells including commercial litigation partner Christopher Grierson, restructuring partner Laurence Crowley and Alexander Wood advising.

Clifford Chance meanwhile is understood to have advised Barclays, which walked away from discussions to buy the stricken bank over the weekend before the bank filed for Chapter 11.

The bank's collapse has raised questions about why the U.S. government did not step in to offer support -- as it did with Bear Stearns and failing mortgage giants Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.

Norton Rose finance partner Peter Snowdon questioned: "What will be the implications now for European banks? I assume the Federal Reserve has come to the point where it feels it cannot keep going on like this; that it has to draw the line somewhere and let the market take the pain."