Michelle Hearne


Michelle is a specialist dispute resolution lawyer and part of the firm’s wider Dispute Resolution Team based in Brighton & Hove.  She has more than 10 years experience in managing a wide range of disputes and has particular expertise in property disputes including construction and construction contracts.


Michelle supports both commercial clients and private individuals who may be involved in a dispute and, in particular, works with a wide range of landlords and property investors and developers who may need advice on resolving issues around the management of property.

Experience and approach

Michelle applies a commercial approach to resolving disputes by providing a detailed assessment of each individual case so that informed decisions can be made about the most appropriate approach to take.  Through detailed and comprehensive consultation with her clients, her approach will always be to avoid direct litigation if possible, preferring to guide clients through more cost effective  mediation or Alternative Dispute Resolution.

However, she will not hesitate to take a robust and direct approach to litigation when this is in the best interests of her clients.  This ensures that any exposure to unnecessary risk and cost is minimised whilst allowing businesses and individuals to achieve solutions that deliver long-term benefits.


•    Construction disputes;
•    Contractual disputes;
•    Consumer disputes;
•    Debt recovery;
•    Boundary disputes;
•    Landlord & Tenant;
•    Professional negligence.

Michelle’s work

Commercial property disputes
Michelle guided a client through an effective litigation process to ensure that they received compensation due to the loss of access to a commercial property.  Michelle argued that the loss of access would have a detrimental impact on the profitability of the business.  By presenting the case in a methodical manner, supported by financial evidence, Michelle achieved a significant settlement figure on behalf of her client.

Managing Leaseholder Disputes
Michelle advised a leaseholder in addressing issues which arose due to the defective drafting of the lease by previously instructed solicitors.  The lease was complex in that it included the provision of adjoining garages, whilst the client was under pressure to meet particular deadlines to complete the sale of the property.  Michelle acted quickly to outline an approach to resolving the defective lease which included managing the commercial demands of the individual purchasing the property.  The dispute was quickly resolved and the sale completed without any negative impact on the property value.