James specialises in cross-border tort cases, claims against public authorities and industrial disease litigation. He has experience of international group litigation and is particularly interested in cases involving comparative human rights law issues.

International & Travel

James has a specific interest and expertise in claims in tort with an international element. He regularly advises on and acts in cross-border personal injury cases raising jurisdiction issues under Brussels I and Brussels II, and choice of law issues under Rome I and Rome II. He is frequently instructed by major tour operators in package holiday claims involving issues under the Package Travel, etc. Regulations 1992 and he has experience of the regimes under the Warsaw Convention, the Montreal Convention and the Athens Convention. He is a founding co-editor of the popular International & Travel Law Blog and has been published in respect of travel sickness claims in the Personal Injury Law Journal.

Examples of James’ work include:

  • Instructed on behalf of a group of Peruvian miners and members of their community in a case involving allegations of unlawful detention and assault by a mining company.
  • Instructed by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the Kenyan Emergency Group Litigation – a group of claims brought by 40,000 Kenyans involving serious allegations of abuse and mistreatment during the Mau Mau insurgency in the 1950s.
  • Acting on behalf of the claimant in a catastrophic skiing accident occurring in Norway and involving a Danish tortfeasor and insurer (led by William Audland QC).
  • Direct actions against foreign insurers arising out of accidents abroad (under FBTO Schadeverzekeringen NV v Odenbreit (2007) Case C-463/06) and in England (often opposing misconceived claims under the European Communities (Rights against Insurers) Regulations 2002).
  • Regularly advising on and acting in claims for personal injuries arising out of food poisoning or breach of local safety standards, as well as other improper performance of package holiday contracts under the Package Travel, etc. Regulations 1992.
Public Authority Liability

James has experience of acting for and against public authorities in cases involving allegations of negligence, misfeasance in public office and breach of human rights. He has a particular academic interest in claims in this area having been awarded the top prizes in both human rights modules on Oxford University’s BCL course.

Examples of James’ work include:

  • Successfully representing a local authority in the High Court in strike out proceedings relating to part of a claim for false imprisonment, assault and breach of art. 8 ECHR brought by a former employee.
  • Acting on behalf of the Ministry of Justice in a claim in negligence, misfeasance in public office and for breaches of articles 2, 3 and 8 ECHR by a prisoner who suffered severe injuries having attempted suicide whilst in custody.
  • Successfully striking out a claim against a local authority for misfeasance in public office, trespass, and breaches of articles 8, 12 and 14 ECHR arising out of the alleged actions of police officers and care workers while taking the Claimant’s child into care.
  • Instructed by the Ministry of Justice in ground-breaking proceedings to seek injunctions on behalf of a number of judges against a member of the public under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 (Foskett & Others v Ezeugo [2017] EWHC 2292 (QB)).
  • Acting on behalf of NHS Trusts in claims involving liability for an assault on staff members carried out by a patient and for injuries to employees and visitors arising out of unsafe health and safety practices.
  • Representing police and ambulance drivers at trial in cases involving road traffic collisions occurring in the course of emergency responses.
  • Acting for and against local authorities in respect of damage caused by falling trees and overhanging branches and in Highways Act 1980 claims for personal injuries arising out of alleged failures to maintain roadways and pavements.
Industrial Disease

James is frequently instructed in disease claims arising out of exposure to occupational noise, mechanical vibration injuries and exposure to hazardous substances including asbestos.

Examples of James’ work include:

  • Acting on behalf of the Claimant in an ongoing fatal mesothelioma case (led by Harry Steinberg QC).
  • Representing the appellant in the First-Tier Tribunal in a Diffuse Mesothelioma Payment Scheme appeal.
  • Acting on a CFA on behalf of a refinery worker who suffered from occupational asthma as a result of exposure to platinum salts.
  • A claim on behalf of a grinding machine operator who suffered respiratory injury after years of exposure to plastic dust at work.
  • Advising on liability and acting at trial in claims for noise-induced hearing loss involving exposure to noise in a variety of industries.
Personal Injury

James has considerable experience of all areas of personal injury law, including road traffic accidents (and claims against the MIB), employers’ liability, occupiers’ liability, defective premises, trespass against the person, and claims under the Animals Act 1971.

Examples of James’ work include:

  • Successfully defending at trial a claim by an audience member against the occupiers of London’s O2 Arena involving injuries sustained during a concert.
  • Acting on a CFA in a case on behalf of a bricklayer who sustained a permanent and disabling hand injury at work.
  • Successfully acting at trial in claims brought by injured employees against restaurants and manufacturers.
  • Advising on liability and contribution proceedings under the Civil Liability (Contribution) Act 1978 in a complex multi-party claim involving serious injuries sustained by a worker on a construction site.
  • Successfully defending at trial a claim for trespass against the person involving an altercation between the claimant and doormen at a nightclub.
Product Liability

James gained experience of product liability litigation during pupillage (including claims under the Consumer Protection Act 1987) and he accepts instructions across all areas of product liability litigation, with a particular focus on claims involving injuries or disease caused by defective products.

Examples of James’ work include:

  • Advising in relation to a high-value contractual dispute involving the supply and installation of a defective cable processing machine.
  • Acting in a claim involving damage caused by defective pet products.

James has experience of the regimes under the Warsaw Convention and Montreal Convention; he accepts instructions in delayed flight claims, denied boarding claims and associated recovery actions.

Clinical Negligence

James acts on behalf of both claimants and defendants in clinical negligence disputes. He has particular experience of advising on complex issues of breach of duty and causation in this area.

Examples of James’ work include:

  • Acting on behalf of both claimants and defendant NHS Trusts in cases involving failures in diagnosis, treatment, or referral of patients.
  • Advising on quantum in a claim arising out of tibial shortening and consequent permanent leg-length discrepancy involving negligent failures to obtain proper consent to surgery and to carry out the surgery to an adequate standard.
  • Advising on expert evidence in a claim by the estate of a recently deceased patient in a failure of diagnosis case.
Credit Hire

James has experience and expertise in all areas of credit hire law. He is well-versed in claims involving fleets of vehicles, prestige cars, intervention letters, loss of profits and agency.

Recent instructions include:

  • Acting in the case of Gonzalez v Dignity Funerals Ltd – the leading decision on ‘rebuttal’ rates evidence.
  • Successfully defending hire claims in a number of fleet cases on the basis of insufficient evidence of need.
  • Defending in full a novel claim for recovery of contractual liabilities arising from negligent damage to a credit hire vehicle.
Qualifications & Awards

BCL (Distinction), Exeter College, University of Oxford
BPTC, City University London
BA Jurisprudence, Saint Peter’s College, University of Oxford

Times Law Awards 2014: 2nd Prize
Law Faculty Prize for Criminal Justice and Human Rights (BCL)
Ralph Chiles Award for Comparative Human Rights (BCL)
Middle Temple Colombos Law Prize
Exeter College Tobias Prize in Law
Oxford Postgraduate Internship Award (UN World Food Programme Legal Office)
Exeter College Internship Grant (Court of Appeal of Hong Kong)
Saint Peter’s College Law Essay Prize


Personal Injuries Bar Association

Travel and Tourism Lawyers Association

British Institute of International and Comparative Law

Government Legal Department’s Junior Juniors Scheme

Pan European Organisation of Personal Injury Lawyers


‘Case Report: Wood and Anor v TUI Travel PLC T/A First Choice [2017] EWCA CIV 11’ (2017) 154 Personal Injury Law Journal 20