Cécile Burgess is a Managing Associate within the Litigation Group based in London. Cécile has extensive experience of acting for global product manufacturers in relation to product liability claims and risk management. Cécile focuses on life sciences (pharmaceuticals and medical devices), and is also experienced in the cosmetics and consumer goods industries. She acts on a wide variety of disputes, including both contractual and tortious claims, as well as "pure" product liability disputes, with extensive experience in instructing both scientific/technical and legal experts. In addition to her litigation and dispute resolution work, Cécile advises on regulatory, product safety and compliance issues. This work includes management of local counsel in Europe and other international jurisdictions, liaising with authorities and regulators around the world, and advising clients in a "trusted advisor" capacity on liability, regulatory and compliance issues. Cécile is a dual qualified Solicitor of England & Wales and French lawyer, with first-hand knowledge of the interaction of French and English civil litigation systems.
- Acting for GlaxoSmithKline in the defence of a large group action in the English High Court brought by English claimants in respect of the use of GSK's antidepressant Seroxat.
- Acting for a global pharmaceutical company in the defence of a number of English claims in respect of the use of one of its vaccines.
- Defending a group action in the English High Court brought by a group of English claimants against a global medical device manufacturer in respect of allegedly defective hip prostheses.
- Coordinating the defence of a global manufacturing company to a series of contractual and tortious claims across various jurisdictions regarding the supply of allegedly defective products to businesses in the life sciences sector.
- Advising a product manufacturer in relation to product liability and product safety issues flowing from a fatal product incident, including advising on the urgent safety risk assessment and corrective actions, and instructing experts.
- Coordinating on an international basis a number of large recalls of consumer products on behalf of market-leading international brand names, including the recall of non-compliant products in the cosmetics, consumer electronics, retail and consumer, and automotive sectors.
- England & Wales: Drug & Medical Device Litigation 2020, International Comparative Legal Guide
- Year Qualified
- Paris Bar, 2011
- England & Wales, 2015
- French (native)
- Qualified Lawyers Transfer Scheme (2015)
- Université Paris I, Panthéon-Sorbonne – Master of Laws (2008)
- King's College London / Université Paris I, Panthéon-Sorbonne – LLB in English Law and French Law (2007)
- Professional Memberships
- International Consumer Product Health & Safety Organisation
- Product Liability Forum, British Institute of International and Comparative Law
"Managing associate Cécile Burgess is held in high regard for her handling of substantial claims arising out of defective pharmaceutical products and consumer goods. She handles significant multi-claimant disputes. According to a source, ‘she has a fantastic attention to detail, she is just on top of everything’, while another interviewee identifies her as ‘a very good litigator’." (Chambers 2020 – Product Liability: Mainly Defendant)
"Senior associate Cécile Burgess is an outstanding practitioner" (Legal 500 2020 – Product Liability: Defendant)
"Associate to watch" (Chambers 2020 – Product Liability: Mainly Defendant)
"Rising star" (Legal 500 2020 – Product Liability: Defendant)