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Hailsham Chambers

Professional Negligence

15 ranked barristersBand 2London (Bar)UK Bar 2022 View ranking table
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Ranked Barristers
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Ranked Barristers

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Client service:

Hailsham Chambers is a highly respected set with a huge depth of expertise in solicitors' liability claims. Tenants have experience representing both claimants and respondents in relation to issues including advice on investment and other transactions, and the management of litigation. The set also has strength in claims involving financial services professionals including auditors and financial advisers. Hailsham barristers have acted in a number of high-profile trials and appeals which have influenced the law on limitation and, in the case of Grondona v Stoffell, the illegality defence.
"The clerks are all excellent; senior clerk Stephen Smith is particularly commercial and helpful." "The clerks are always very good. We deal mostly with Michael Kilbey, who is responsive and friendly." "Everyone from the receptionist to the QCs is extremely nice and very helpful, and the chambers as a whole is just a pleasure to deal with." The set can boast a resilient client service and administrative function; prior investment in IT facilities ensured Hailsham was well placed to meet the challenges of remote working in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Strengths:

Dan Stacey
Dan Stacey frequently provides counsel to clients facing major High Court and Court of Appeal proceedings. His work includes acting for and against accountants, surveyors and solicitors, and he has a particular flair for cases involving issues of limitation, with notable expertise in the illegality defence. He has a deep knowledge of lenders' claims.
"Very well respected, and well liked by solicitors." "He's incredible on paper and on his feet, and particularly good on complex matters."
Recent work: Acted as junior counsel in the Supreme Court case of Grondona v Stoffell, which has become a key authority on the illegality defence in professional negligence claims.

Strengths:

Derek Holwill
Derek Holwill is a highly experienced barrister who is sought after to counsel claimants and defendants, most commonly in the financial and legal sectors. He also advises in relation to professional indemnity coverage. He has particular expertise in limitation issues.
"An outstanding barrister, essentially a QC in all but name. He can do the whole range of professional indemnity, with genuine expertise in coverage in indemnity."
Recent work: Represented Farrer & Co as a defendant in a case involving claims of negligence against two firms of solicitors by a former client, concerning multimillion-pound tax liabilities arising from the purchase of a painting through a BVI-based company.

Strengths:

Francis Bacon
Francis Bacon centres his practice on professional negligence cases and insurance coverage disputes, particularly those with an element of fraud. He often takes on high-value solicitors' negligence claims with significant international aspects, and routinely acts unled.
"He's extremely bright, even by the standards of the Bar. Very confident, very direct - you know exactly where you stand. He relishes a challenge and approaches the complex cases with zeal." "He's super experienced, keen to help out and a great advocate. He's a very commercial barrister and doesn't just think about one bit of paper at a time."
Recent work: Acted for Messer Beg solicitors in a complex loss of opportunity claim brought by 101 claimants, relating to a group action they brought against Barclays and Bank of Scotland from 2009, which itself concerned Share Appreciation Mortgages entered into in the 1990s.

Strengths:

Henry Bankes-Jones
Henry Bankes-Jones acts for individuals and insurers, being particularly noted for his work in solicitor and barrister negligence claims, but also acting in matters concerning accountants and other professionals. He has appeared unled, and at all levels up to the Supreme Court in cases considering novel legal questions.
"On technical aspects of solicitor practice he's excellent on the law, presents in a compelling way and is a safe pair of hands." "He has plenty of guts."
Recent work: Acted in Percy v Merriman White and another, a case which involved contribution proceedings against a barrister following a settled action for negligence against solicitors.

Strengths:

Imran Benson
Imran Benson acts in a diverse set of claims against surveyors, valuers, accountants and auditors, among other professionals. He is also notable for his work in relation to solicitors' negligence arising out of corporate and partnership transactions.
"Excellent, a first-class senior junior. A superb barrister."
Recent work: Defended a law firm against a claim for missed limitation in the context of an underlying professional negligence claim. Successfully argued that the claimant was a fraudster running a Ponzi scheme and so his underlying claim had no merit.

Strengths:

Jack Steer
Jack Steer is building a strong reputation as a professional negligence specialist barrister, typically acting for defendants across a variety of professions but particularly in the legal and financial services sectors.
"He gives excellent and thorough legal advice which looks at the whole issue and the wider impact of everything." "He's quick, clever, very easy to get on with and an unstuffy, effective advocate." "He manages all the expectations, and his drafting is very good. He explains things very well, and he's great with difficult clients. Destined to be instructed on the more complex cases."
Recent work: Acted successfully for two defendants in a case alleging negligence in failing to advise the claimant on the merits of a settlement agreement following the termination of his employment.

Strengths:

Jamie Carpenter QC
Jamie Carpenter QC largely concentrates on representing defendants in professional negligence cases, though he also has a growing reputation for claimant work. Best known for his representation in claims against solicitors, his practice has expanded to include litigation involving insurance brokers and financial services professionals. He can also provide the benefit of his strong practice in costs litigation.
"He's absolutely splendid, a real thoroughbred. User-friendly and very clever, you can totally rely on him to do a good job." "One of the go-to barristers in professional negligence, he has been well ahead of his game for years. Incredibly knowledgeable and easy to work with." "He's a costs specialist and very good on lawyer liability. That's a rare and very good combination, and he has a great brain too. He's razor sharp and easy to get on with."
Recent work: Acted for Howard Kennedy LLP as defendant in a £13 million solicitors' negligence claim arising from a failed development scheme in Lewes.

Strengths:

Joshua Munro
A barrister who has many years' experience in the field of professional negligence, Joshua Munro is typically involved in claims against surveyors, lawyers and independent financial advisers. He complements his practice with experience in insurance and costs work.
"Joshua is exceptionally talented, knowledgeable and confident. Both professional and approachable, which is a rare combination."
Recent work: Acted for the claimant investment banker in a claim against Withers alleging under-settlement of matrimonial proceedings.

Strengths:

Matthew Jackson
Matthew Jackson is a senior barrister with a strong track record in defending a range of professionals, including accountants, valuers and solicitors, as well as professional indemnity insurers. He often takes on high-value claims against law firms arising from prior personal injury or clinical negligence litigation, and a number of his cases have arisen from the high-profile vibration white finger (VWF) litigation. He acts in both individual and group actions.
"He's the fount of all knowledge on coal VWF compensation scheme cases; he knows the subject inside out. He is really good to work with, happy to discuss things and always meets deadlines despite being so busy."

Strengths:

Michael Pooles QC
Michael Pooles QC is renowned for his skill in handling indemnity claims and related coverage matters. He acts for a comprehensive range of clients but focuses in particular on claims concerning surveyors, accountants and lawyers. He has contributed over the years to literature on the subject of professional liability.
"You can really see where he's adding value: he knows just the right advice to give to take a claim forward. Very easy to work with and extremely bright." "Absolutely brilliant, a leader of the professional negligence Bar. He has the ear of the court and is a delight to work with." "He is just brilliant. He makes difficult things look easy, has a really responsive manner with clients, and doesn't get hot under the collar."
Recent work: Acted for the defendant solicitors in Angelgate v Oliver & Co, a group of multimillion-pound claims arising out of investor-funded property developments.

Strengths:

Niamh O'Reilly
Niamh O'Reilly receives superb reviews from her clients, denoting her as a barrister with experience and authority beyond her years. She is particularly noted for her work on lawyers' negligence, but also offers expertise across a broad range of disciplines including accountants and other professions.
"She's brilliant, my go-to for higher-value solicitor negligence cases below the silk level." "She's an exceptionally good barrister, she gets the judge on side - just incredibly good, a real rising star." "Extremely hard-working, gets into the detail, and very supportive to solicitors on the black-letter advice but also the whole perspective. She is able to give very authoritative advice in very complex areas."
Recent work: Defended a complex claim arising from the alleged failure to advise as to the limitation period for a claim against conveyancing solicitors. The case was complicated by the fact that the individual solicitor who had acted in the property sale had moved from one firm to another, leading to difficult questions of liability.

Strengths:

Nicola Rushton QC
Nicola Rushton QC has an established professional negligence practice which has recently been focused on claims against solicitors and accountants. Her work in the field arises from a variety of matters including fraud, insolvency and trusts.
"She's user-friendly and responsive, and is prepared to challenge existing thinking." "Phenomenal. She's very client-friendly, gives clear advice and communicates really well with everyone involved."
Recent work: Acted for the defendant in matrimonial proceedings, in a counterclaim against an expert, for professional negligence in valuing his company for those proceedings.

Strengths:

Simon Howarth
Simon Howarth has an extensive practice in handling claims of solicitors' and barristers' negligence, but is also able to advise on claims regarding insurance brokerage disputes. He is also regularly instructed in complex, high-value claims arising in the financial services sector.
"He has an excellent understanding of the interrelationships between regulatory law and professional negligence. He really is a go-to lawyer for that kind of work." "He's excellent. A first-class, very knowledgeable barrister, he knows the financial services regulations inside out, is very good with clients and produces excellent written work." "He's extremely brainy, impressively knowledgeable about insurance and great at distilling the hard stuff down and picking out the key issues."
Recent work: Acted in a complex multiparty dispute involving accusations of negligence and conspiracy arising from the sale of a company in administration.

Strengths:

Simon Wilton
Simon Wilton is head of the professional negligence group at Hailsham and an impressive practitioner in the field who has written extensively on the subject. He is most often instructed by professionals and indemnity insurers in the real estate and financial sectors, where he takes on high-profile, multiparty cases.
"He's a heavyweight barrister: exceptionally intelligent, incredibly good on his feet, and has the judge on his side. I tend to give him the big, complex cases." "He has all the qualities of a leading silk. One of the nicest and most user-friendly barristers you can ever come across." "He's really invested in the underlying client, and he goes above and beyond in every way, particularly impressive in his knowledge of the minutiae in complex cases."
Recent work: Acted for a principal defendant solicitor in claims arising from the failure of three buyer-funded developments involving hundreds of buyers of investment properties as claimants.

Strengths:

William Flenley QC
Well versed in the full spectrum of professional liability work, William Flenley QC serves as an arbitrator and a mediator, as well as an advocate. He specialises particularly in solicitors' negligence, on which subject he has co-authored a leading reference text.
"He's a very cerebral barrister and fantastic to work with." "He's fantastic, the perfect foil to difficult clients. You can be confident that he's looking unemotionally at the issues, not getting distracted by the heat and noise." "Quite simply the best in my opinion. He's excellent, not only extremely bright but user-friendly and really good with clients, and responsive. He lives up to his reputation."
Recent work: Acted for the claimant in a complex claim against Gateleys arising out of a share purchase agreement.

Professional Negligence

Hailsham Chambers

firm
Location

4 Paper Buildings (Ground Floor)

Temple

London

Greater London

UK

EC4Y 7EX

View Set Profile

Ranked Barristers

Chambers Research is conducted by 200 Research Analysts, across 200 jurisdictions and provides nearly 6,000 rankings tables. Annually we collect hundreds of thousands of responses from clients, the majority via in-depth interview. Learn more about our methodology.

Silks (QC)

London (Bar)

Professional Negligence


Jamie Carpenter QC
Band 4
Michael Pooles QC
Star Individuals
Nicola Rushton QC
Band 4
William Flenley QC
Band 1

Juniors

London (Bar)

Professional Negligence


Dan Stacey
Band 3
Derek Holwill
Band 1

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