12KBW barristers can offer additional specialist support in a variety of areas. Please click on the tabs below for further information.


12KBW has a team of barristers specialising in sexual and physical abuse claims.  We are instructed by both claimants and defendants in cases involving schools, children’s homes, prisons, local authorities, youth groups (e.g. the Scouts), commercial employers, medical professionals, foster carers, and churches and other religious bodies. We have particular experience of international and group litigation, and social work negligence claims.

Our expertise covers all aspects of abuse claims, including: limitation, consent, vicarious liability, non-delegable duties, causation / apportionment, quantum, human rights, jurisdiction, and disclosure and evidential issues.

12KBW barristers have been instructed in ground-breaking cases in this area:

For claimants this includes:

  • group litigation against British Airways for child sexual abuse by a pilot in Kenya
  • claims by Iraqi civilians abused and detained by British Army members
  • claims by environmental protestors in Peru, and by Sierra Leonean nationals.

For defendants, our cases include:

  • striking-out an historical social work negligence claim pre-trial
  • representing Ealing Abbey in a sexual abuse case concerning former Father Laurence Soper.

Many of our barristers have experience of Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA) claims, and First Tier Tribunal appeals, in sexual and physical assault cases.

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12KBW’s specialist aviation team acts for and against airlines, tour operators, airport and aircraft owners and aircraft maintenance, lease and ground handling companies and aircraft manufacturers. We also act in the insurance and reinsurance markets.

Our barristers are experienced in acting in civil claims, inquests and arbitration proceedings across a broad range of aviation matters including in personal injury, insurance, product liability, employment, commercial and regulatory matters.

We are experts in dealing with jurisdiction and choice of laws. We regularly act in cases involving the Brussels Regulations, Lugano Convention and service out of the jurisdiction Civil Procedure Rules, as well as in cases involving applicable law under the Rome I and Rome II Regulations. Our barristers advise on the application of foreign law including in relation to limitation and the assessment and quantification of loss. 12KBW works with a well established network of foreign lawyers who we are able to recommend to advise on foreign law.

Our team also regularly act in claims brought under the Montreal and Warsaw Conventions, the Package Travel Regulations 1992, in delayed and denied boarding, baggage and goods in transit claims and associated recovery actions by tour operators.

The strength of our personal injury and product liability aviation experience is reflected in the leading role 12KBW barristers have taken in the aerotoxicity litigation (arising from the ingestion of organophosphate and other chemicals). Other cases include acting in:

  • Claims arising from the Shoreham Airshow crash
  • Qantas passengers’ class action following uncontained engine failure on an A380

Our commercial, employment and insurance experience includes acting in:

  • The London war risks market, in private arbitration proceedings in respect of losses in Libya, Chad and Afghanistan
  • Noble Caledonia v Air Niugini a contribution claim for consequential damage arising from a delayed flight.

Our barristers have an enviable depth of experience in military aviation, having acted in the most high profile cases, including:

  • Nimrod XV230 aircraft crash
  • 9A Lynx helicopter crash
  • Maydown (Gazelle helicopter crash, vortex ring and REME misstatement) Inquest
  • Moray Firth GR4 Tornado mid-air collision
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The 12KBW construction team is able to advise on most agreements for the supply of building and engineering services, and we are fully conversant with the JCT and RIBA standard forms of construction and allied contracts.  Our barristers are particularly well placed to deal with issues such as contractual indemnity clauses and breach of contract claims in the context of construction site accidents.

Our construction team has considerable expertise in professional negligence claims made against architects, engineers, surveyors and other building, design and construction professionals.

Several 12KBW barristers are instructed by the owners of underground service media on claims arising from damage caused during building works.

Our recent cases include a claim for fire damage involving interpretation of the construction contract and of warranties in a PL policy, and an action by a building owner against a design and build contractor/sub-contractors in respect of design defects leading to catastrophic personal injury.

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Credit Hire

12KBW’s strong and valued links with many of the UK’s leading insurance companies have enabled us to develop considerable expertise in this area. We act on a regular basis in cases at all levels, and our experience ranges from lower value hire claims to claims valued at hundreds of thousands of pounds.

The strong reputation of our team has seen us  act frequently in cases raising novel and complex arguments of principle and law. We have been instructed in some of the seminal cases, including Copley v Lawn (intervention letters) on appeal, and Opoku v Tintas (mitigation) and Singh v Yaqubi (fleets of vehicles) at first instance.  Further cases include McBride v UK Insurance Ltd (basic hire rates and nil excesses) in the Court of Appeal, and Gonzalez v Dignity Funerals Ltd (‘rebuttal’ rates evidence) and Abdi v Fletcher (‘cross-hire’ rates) in the County Court.

Our barristers are well-versed in the common arguments on enforceability, need, period and rate.  However, we also bring to bear particular expertise in cases involving more complex issues, such as agency, ‘type of vehicle’ arguments, fleets of vehicles, loss of profits, credit repair schemes, intervention letters and subrogation.

Our particular specialism in motor insurance law means that we have considerable experience of issues relating to the recoverability of credit repair charges in the context of the MIB agreements. Our dedicated fraud team is familiar with the issues arising in claims which include allegedly fraudulent hire elements.

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12KBW barristers act in many of the leading cases involving allegations of fraud in personal injury and related claims. Our barristers have considerable experience in drafting pleadings where fraud is alleged, and in providing strategic advice at all stages up to trial, as well as acting in subsequent contempt of court proceedings.

We have particular expertise in personal injury cases involving alleged exaggeration or malingering.  We provide tactical advice in relation to the use of surveillance, social media evidence, and insurance database material.

In the context of road traffic accidents we act in cases concerning alleged low velocity impacts, phantom passengers and staged accidents.  We have appeared in numerous cases involving suspected fraud rings.

Our barristers also provide advice in relation to associated costs issues, including applications for indemnity, wasted, or third party costs orders, or for qualified one-way costs shifting to be disapplied on grounds of fundamental dishonesty.

Key cases in which we have acted include:

  • Brighton & Hove Bus & Coach Co Ltd v Brooks
  • Motor Insurers’ Bureau v Shikell and Others
  • Tadrous & Tadrous (contempt of court proceedings)
  • Owens v Noble (fresh evidence tending to show deliberate exaggeration)
  • O’Leary v Tunnelcraft and Douglas v O’Neill (two of the leading authorities on the admission of surveillance evidence)
  • Ali v Caton (1) Motor Insurers’ Bureau (2) (alleged malingering).
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Health & Safety

Many 12KBW barristers have considerable expertise in the field of health and safety, representing both corporate and individual defendants in criminal prosecutions.  Our barristers frequently act on behalf of families and other interested persons at inquests when HSE or local authority prosecutions arising out of the death are likely, as well as dealing with civil claims arising from health and safety breaches.

In workplace accident prosecutions in particular, clients benefit from being represented by a personal injury specialist barrister, who is an expert in the operation of the applicable regulatory framework.   In contrast to many criminal practitioners, our health and safety barristers can often identify important legal points arising from the relevant statutory provisions, which can be critical to a successful defence or mitigation.   Some of our health and safety barristers also have judicial experience of sitting in crime.

Recent cases undertaken by our barristers include:

  • acting for a defendant accused of gross negligence manslaughter
  • defending companies and employees in high profile health and safety prosecutions
  • acting for a children’s home in what is believed to be the first prosecution brought by the Welsh Government pursuant to Welsh specific regulations.
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Military Claims

12KBW has a team of silks and juniors who specialise in military claims. We have been instructed in
numerous high-profile cases in this field including:

  1. The Snatch Land Rover and Challenger 2 litigation;
  2. Inglis v MoD [2019] EWHC 1153 (QB): seminal judgment on claims for disability and
    disadvantage on the open labour market arising out of noise-induced hearing loss;
  3. Alseran & Others v Ministry of Defence [2017] EWHC 3289: claims brought under the HRA
    1998 and in Iraqi law by Iraqi civilians who allege that they were assaulted and unlawfully
    detained by UK military personnel during the invasion of Iraq in 2003;
  4. Inquest following the loss of Nimrod XV230: RAF aircraft crash in Kandahar in 2006 with 14
    crew members on board, the largest single loss of military life since the Falklands War; and
  5. Radclyffe v MOD [2009] EWCA Civ 635: a Court of Appeal decision confirming that general
    service ethos can amount to a ‘soft order’ for which the Ministry may be vicariously liable
    where it amounts to a breach of duty and leads to foreseeable loss.

Members of Chambers are presently acting in several group actions in which over 3,000 current and former military personnel are bringing claims against the MoD in respect of noise-induced hearing loss, non-freezing cold injuries, and/or PTSD sustained during service.

We are instructed in relation to all manner of injury claims brought by service personnel, including claims arising out of training injuries, clinical negligence on the part of military medical personnel, bullying and harassment, and physical / sexual assault. In addition, 12KBW has considerable experience in actions brought by third parties against the MoD for the tortious acts of service personnel abroad.

Members of Chambers are adept at advising on the legal issues that commonly arise in military claims, including combat immunity; limitation; the applicability of the six-pack regulations abroad / post October 2013; jurisdiction and applicable law; the calculation of loss of military earnings and allowances; and the operation of the Armed Forces Pension Schemes (AFPS 75, 05 and 15).

We have unrivalled knowledge of the MoD’s generic policies for minimising the risk of service personnel suffering personal injuries and are familiar with many of the medico-legal and employment experts specialising in military claims.

Members of Chambers have personal experience of serving in the Armed Forces and Reserve Forces.

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Professional Negligence

12KBW’s barristers have considerable expertise and experience in the field of professional negligence. This includes acting for both claimants and defendants in claims against architects, engineers, surveyors and valuers, insurance brokers, auctioneers, social workers, education professionals and veterinary surgeons.

We provide advice and advocacy over the whole spectrum of professional negligence work. However, of particular note is the fact that our skills and specialist knowledge, which are derived from our core strengths in clinical negligence and personal injury work, are frequently and effectively deployed in litigation for and against solicitors, barristers and other professionals in claims arising from injury and disease litigation. For example, we have vast experience of claims against solicitors involving limitation issues, under-settlement, and procedural default (including utilising our detailed knowledge of the post-Mitchell and Denton landscape).

Individual 12KBW barristers can offer particular specialisms, for example in disputes involving insurance law and claims against brokers, underwriters and loss adjusters, construction and environmental disputes, and claims against engineering and other building professionals. We have particular expertise on questions of the existence and scope of duties of care and issues of causation.

In addition to acting as advocates at all levels, our barristers are frequently instructed in arbitrations and mediations arising from professional negligence claims. Some of our barristers been appointed as expert determinators in disputes under the authority of the Financial Ombudsman to decide whether or not solicitors have been negligent, and to determine the quantum of claims arising from such negligence.

12KBW cases include the leading House of Lords authority, South Australia Asset Management v York Montague (“SAAMCO”).

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The 12KBW property team is able to advise on claims arising out of damage to land and buildings, particularly those concerned with water damage from flooding, and fire damage, with regard to both reconstruction and business interruption.

Our barristers also have expertise in other forms of public and private nuisance, such as claims arising from noise, fumes, tree root subsidence and other invasive plants.  Our public authority expertise means we have particular experience of claims for and against local authorities relating to property damage.

The experience of our property team underpins our expertise in professional negligence, including claims arising from conveyancing issues and or otherwise relating to property transactions, against both solicitors and surveyors.  Our barristers have acted in cases which arose out of errors in local authority searches, including questions of the existence and scope of duties of care, and issues of consequential damage.

We also have experience in easements, such as rights of way and rights to light, as well as the effect, and enforcement, of restrictive covenants.  Several members of our property team can advise on leasehold disputes, including those concerning service charges, dilapidations and disrepair, as well as enfranchisement and right to manage.  12KBW barristers are able to advise on boundary disputes, party wall notices and claims for access to neighbouring land.

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Public Authority Liability

12KBW has a long-standing reputation in the field of public authority liability, acting for both claimants and defendants in claims against, and on behalf of, all kinds of public authorities, including: highway authorities, social services departments, educational institutions, the military, the police, fire and ambulance services, National Government (including the Welsh Government), regional government and local authorities, health authorities, and quasi-governmental bodies and government agencies.

In addition to our well-recognised expertise in personal injury claims, many of our barristers have experience of a much broader range of public authority claims, including:

  • human rights
  • data protection, misuse of private information and breach of privacy /confidentiality
  • highway authority claims, including rights of way and public nuisance
  • property damage, including flooding and tree roots
  • Article 2 inquests, including deaths in custody
  • sexual and physical abuse claims
  • occupational stress, bullying and harassment claims
  • disability discrimination
  • education claims, including dyslexia and bullying cases.

12KBW’s expertise in this field extends to specialist areas such as the interaction between private and public law duties, the extent to which statutory duties may give rise to common law claims for damages, and the impact of public policy on claims.

Our public authority cases include:

  • Stovin v Wise
  • Harvey v Plymouth City Council
  • Hatton v Sutherland
  • Barber v Somerset County Council
  • Wembridge v Winter.
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