Catherine specialises in high value complex personal injury and clinical negligence disputes. She has a loyal following from both claimant and defendant solicitors.
In a claimant capacity, much of Catherine’s work involves catastrophic injury which has had a life-changing impact on her clients. Whether the injuries have resulted in severe pain, mobility restrictions, disfigurement, reduced life expectancy or bereavement, Catherine’s approachable nature and excellent care skills mean her clients are able to feel fully engaged. She deals with claims in a practical and productive manner and gains job satisfaction from knowing that she is able to help her clients not only through the litigation process, but also to move on with their lives.
Catherine is regularly instructed by most of the country’s leading defendant solicitors, who value her sound practical and tactical advice as much as her experience of the claimant’s perspective/motivation. Catherine’s interest in the detail of a claim equips her to anticipate what will be the decisive issues even in the most document heavy of cases. Whilst Catherine always has an eye on the commerciality of litigation (and finding a commercially acceptable resolution if possible) she equally has a skill for spotting the cases on which her clients should stand firm. As a result of successful outcomes in even the most difficult of claims, Catherine is also regularly instructed by most of the country’s leading insurers.
Whether acting for claimants or defendants, Catherine has built strong working relationships with those instructing her, resulting in regular repeat instructions.
Catherine is an accredited mediator (civil and commercial disputes; workplace disputes) and has a particular interest in the psychology and tactics of negotiation. She regularly provides talks to solicitors and is a very experienced advocacy trainer.
Aside from regularly acting on her own in very high value claims, Catherine has acted as junior counsel on a number of occasions being led by Frank Burton QC, Andrew Hogarth QC, Ronnie Walker QC, William Featherby QC and Susan Rodway QC.
A significant proportion of Catherine’s work relates to the assessment of damages in very high value claims involving complicated medico-legal / causation issues. She is also very experienced at dealing with liability disputes and has a broad range of experience in claims across chambers areas of practice, including employers’ liability, public liability, product liability, occupiers’ liability, road traffic accidents and Animals’ Act claims.
Catherine has over 20 years’ experience at the Personal Injury Bar. During her time at 12 King’s Bench Walk she has dealt with claims involving most types of injury including (but not limited to):
- Orthopaedic injury (including catastrophic)
- Multiple injury
- Brain injury
- Pain cases
- Psychiatric injury (and in particular the overlap with brain injury and aggravation of previous conditions)
- Fatal accidents
- Disease claims
She is regularly instructed in cases requiring detailed fact management and forensic analysis in document heavy cases.
Catherine acts predominately for claimants in the field of clinical negligence. She is regularly instructed in a wide range of clinical negligence claims.
Recent cases include:
- Birth trauma (both mother and child)
- Failed breast reconstruction surgery (resulting in disfigurement, pain and psychiatric injury)
- Delayed diagnosis of cancer resulting in death (with complex causation issues).
- Delayed diagnosis of cancer causing reduced life expectancy and additional surgical/therapeutic input (with complex causation issues).
- Inappropriate wound management in diabetic patient leading to limb amputation.
- Misdiagnosis of hydrocephalus.
- Over-prescription of medication with permanent impact on health.
- Negligent post-operative care leading to a fall in geriatric patient.
- Delayed diagnosis of appendicitis.
- Failed IVF (including causation issues)
- Stillbirth (requiring sensitivity of approach given limited value of claim, despite devastating impact on mother).
Catherine’s interest in people is evident in conference when discussing sensitive issues. Her attention to detail and understanding of this area of the law, mean she is well equipped to deal with complex disputes (both on breach and causation) and is regularly instructed to advise in conference with expert witnesses. Although most clinical negligence claims do not go to trial, Catherine’s extensive trial advocacy experience mean in appropriate cases, she is well placed to represent claimants at trial. She has recently provided solicitor training on causation in clinical negligence claims.
Catherine acts in professional negligence actions against lawyers involving personal injury claims.
Prior to coming to the Bar, Catherine worked for a major insurance broker.
She enjoys being instructed in insurance disputes, from property damage to fire and flood claims to disputes concerning policy wording and indemnity issues / MIB claims.
Catherine is instructed regularly to attend Costs and Case Management Conferences (both for claimants and defendants).
She provides talks on costs law.
Catherine is regularly instructed by defendants in claims involving an allegation of fraud. She has a particular interest and skill in forensic analysis of documents to help establish fraud. She has a good understanding of how counter-surveillance evidence can be attacked.
Catherine has acted for applicants in the CICA, including claims involving sexual abuse both on eligibility and award.
Catherine is an accredited mediator (both Civil and Commercial, and Workplace disputes). Her interest in people and detail help her to get to the heart of a dispute. She has successful experience in mediating disputes in her fields of expertise (including personal injury and costs) but has also successfully conducted several mediations under a pilot scheme at the Royal Courts of Justice in areas of law further afield including commercial and landlord and tenant/property disputes. Her interest in mediation in workplace claims stems from an awareness of the cost of stress claims (both financial to those involved) and a belief that litigation is not always the best way to resolve such issues. She is well equipped to enable parties to see beyond their dispute.