Direct Client Services
Combining the highest levels of expertise with advanced working methods and systems....
I have been well established as one of the UK's leading barristers for many years. Now I am able to offer my services as a fully independent leading counsel, not tied to any particular barristers' chambers or supplier service agreements. I am able to work either alone or with any instructing lawyers and junior counsel who share my aim to work purely in your interests. If you would be interested in seeking my advice, please read the following sections with care to understand what I can do to help you and your family when you are suffering serious injury and loss.
What types of case can I handle?
My professional title "Leading Counsel" (often abbreviated to "Leader") usually means a senior barrister appointed Queen's Counsel (QC). A QC is normally expected to work with an assisting Junior, ie. a barrister who has not "taken silk" to become a QC. The term "Junior" does not refer to the age or experience of the assisting counsel.
However, a Leader may be asked to advise and sometimes to appear in court without the assistance of an instructing lawyer or a Junior, and I am happy to consider doing so, especially when giving preliminary advice or for case management hearings and settlement meetings.
In my complex injury practice, I usually act for clients who face the challenges of significant physical or psychiatric disability, or both. I seek to obtain proper compensation to help clients overcome and manage their injuries and maximise their quality of life going forward. In situations where the injury has sadly resulted in death, I act for the deceased person's family and dependants, and seek to obtain proper compensation to help them overcome the loss of their loved one. My unique approach combines the highest levels of empathy with rigorous and technically driven analysis, clarity of professional advice, strategic awareness and what has been described as "a steely determination". This is what differentiates me and makes for the highest prospects of success for my clients.
My practice is not limited to injury related work. My work as Counsel General for Wales and in major test cases has demonstrated that I am also a broad-based "common lawyer" and so a highly effective strategic leader in test litigation and appellate work in common law fields including tort, public and constitutional law, and human rights. I enjoy leading large or small teams of lawyers, depending on the type of case, and will always support my team members and take overall responsibility for the team's work and results.
What sort of barrister am I?
Preparation and Perfomance
You would, I'm sure, expect a QC to be an excellent lawyer. Taking that as a given, I am well known for hard work and exemplary preparation of my cases, both when advising and when representing my clients. You can expect me to have carefully considered the instructions you send me in advance, so that discussion in consultation with me, or my advice in writing, will be comprehensive and effective to answer your questions about the case.
Achieving the Right Settlement
Of course many cases settle without the need for a court to rule upon the parties' disputes. I am also a very tough negotiator, always open to settlement discussions and meetings, but quite prepared to have my client "walk away" if the deal is not right. So much so, that an opposing lawyer recently tried to persuade my client and instructing solicitor not to instruct me for a second settlement meeting because it was alleged I had been "difficult" in the first. Unsuccessfully. Neither the solicitor nor the client agreed there was anything "difficult" about my approach, and the client took the view that it was precisely my job to challenge firmly the arguments of the other side. The case settled at the second meeting; I secured a doubled offer approaching £2m. Courteously of course. In another recent example, the Defendant insurer refused to improve their offer of £500,000 at a settlement meeting until we made significant reduction in our demands realistically valued at £900,000. On my advice and with my support the client, for whom this was a difficult decision, walked away. 3 days later the claim settled for £800,000.
As Chair of the Bar Council's Wellbeing At The Bar Working Group, I well understand and am sympathetic to, the pressures of life of all kinds, and perhaps particularly for injured and bereaved people.
I am also Chair of Welsh Rowing, and a keen advocate of an active and healthy lifestyle, especially conducive to the long term wellbeing of people managing disability. I always encourage my clients to pursue sport and other challenging activities; I really enjoy identifying new equipment and other support that can help them achieve their personal aims, and enabling this to be the basis of reasonable claims for compensation in order to provide the required equipment and support. In a recent case, with the specific encouragement of his employer (the Defendant) for rehabilitation reasons, my client had taken up Paralympic competition and competed at the Rio round. A claim was prepared and presented for the costs of his continuing to pursue that new sporting career, including the costs of attending international events to maintain his eligibility for Olympic selection.
Personal Approach and Engagement
I am well known in my legal and academic work as a sympathetic, approachable, collaborative and completely reliable person with an especially practical and pragmatic approach to complex data and problem-solving.
I will always want to meet my client at the first opportunity, usually in his/her home in order fully to understand the client's normal environment and the challenges presented by the particular forms of disability and loss.
Systems and Technology
I am a highly interactive and responsive professional, and work in a highly efficient and modern way, normally entirely "digitally", using online legal research resources, conferencing sytems, and GDPR compliant secure online folders for transmission of instructions, documents, advice and drafting.
I provide a broad range of services and solutions to help individuals navigate the complexities of both their legal rights and the justice system. My aim is to achieve, perhaps essentially, what my clients need, but also, equally importantly, what they want - for themselves and their families.
Expert overview and preliminary advice
I am licensed by the Bar Council to provide direct preliminary legal and tactical advice of the highest quality available in this country, without you needing to go via a solicitor for "referral" to a barrister in the traditional way.
In many cases of significant injury to you or your loved ones, this will enable you to get an early understanding of the process of, and prospects for, seeking compensation, based on the highest level of legal and practical expertise in these types of claims. I can also provide a useful second opinion to advice already given by lawyers if that is what you need.
My clients have suffered disabling injuries of various kinds, including physical or psychiatric injury, or both, with attendant care needs, loss of actual or potential earnings, and needs for specialist equipment and technology, and often rehousing to accommodation better suited to their needs.
Depending on the complexity of the issues, I usually handle claims running from several hundreds of thousands up to many millions of pounds. These sound like, and often are, very large sums of money, but care is needed in estimating the value of the claim, and it is very easy to underestimate the true value of an injury claim, particularly if the effects are permanent and will last over many years. Indeed, in the time I have been practising, injury claim values in cases of disabling injury have increased markedly as the courts have come to value them properly with real understanding of the long term effects.
There are also some particularly complex or sensitive cases at lower financial values in which the courts will accept (when awarding the claimant's costs) that it was appropriate to seek Leading Counsel's advice, particularly early on.
I will always advise you about what I can properly do to help. Where it is appropriate or necessary to seek alternative help, either from another, eg. less senior, barrister, or from a solicitor or other legal, or medical, professional, I will say so. I will always seek to be your understanding guide and advisor, whilst giving you accurate and completely objective professional advice.
If you would like, I may well be able to help you choose the right lawyer if, for example, further preparation is needed before I can advise fully, or if, after I give my initial advice, litigation via the courts or other tribunal is required.
Please read the information in this website, including the links from the Home Page and the Frequently Asked Questions to help you decide whether you would like me to help in your case. When you contact us, we will discuss with you how best I can help. If I can advise you direct, you will be able to discuss with us what more you need to do to prepare for me to advise.
Please note that I offer this service only as a privately paying service, though we will be careful to agree with you in advance exactly how much work I am to do and exactly what that will cost. If you need help but cannot pay for this service, we can try to help you find a lawyer who will consider your case for a conditional fee agreement (CFA). To learn more about how this service can help you, and the realistic costs, please see our FAQ section and then Contact Us using the details below and at the top of each page of this site.
Proper maximisation of the claim
In the time I have been practising, the correct computation of damages awards has become an increasingly complex process, though it remains "both science and art". I am especially experienced in and prepared for the technicalities of this work. See more information here.