Steve O'Reilly

Clayton Utz
Partner Melbourne

A seasoned, practical, no-nonsense adviser, Steve excels at advising clients in project delivery, contract administration and taking a commercial and strategic approach to all forms of dispute resolution.

His extensive experience traverses commercial development, major infrastructure and the energy and resources sectors, adeptly navigating the landscape at principal, sponsor, contractor and subcontractor tiers.

Notably, Steve was also national managing partner between 2010 and 2014 and chaired the Clayton Utz Board for a three-year tenure starting in 2017.

Notable Work
  • Hydro Tasmania: advised after the failure of the Basslink Interconnector in December 2015. Following a successful multi-party arbitration process, the matter encompassed receivership proceedings, asset sale, and a comprehensive overhaul of the associated contractual framework.
  • Level Crossing Removal Program: project lead at Clayton Utz for the Program, and providing advice on project delivery and contract administration issues.
  • Melbourne Airport: guided the Airport through multi-faceted delay and variation claims submitted by the D&C contractor. Strategically managed solutions to expedite the successful completion of Terminal 4 and its interconnected infrastructure.
  • Victorian Community Safety Building Authority: tackling intricate claims involving defects, latent conditions, variations, performance warranties and completion challenges for correctional and prison facility projects.
  • Victorian Government: advising in respect of risk mitigation strategies and project delivery alternatives for East West Link.
  • ACT Government: acted on delivering the ACT Light Rail Stage 1 and advising on project administration issues and claims. Also acting on interrelated civil road projects aimed at seamlessly integrating the road and light rail networks.
  • Kawasaki: joint team leader advising on a significant project in Victoria to produce hydrogen energy from brown coal.
  • INPEX: acted on the $15bn onshore LNG processing plant, advising on ground conditions, delay and disruption claims.
  • Anaconda Operations: acted in a substantial $1.2bn construction dispute, centred around defects and the protracted completion and ramp-up of a nickel and cobalt process plant.
  • Macquarie: represented in deftly addressing US$700m claims raised by a joint venture contractor for the South Bay Expressway project in the USA. The dispute spanned arbitration and litigation proceedings in California and New York.
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