James Counsell QC
Year of Call:
James Counsell, QC is widely recognised in the fields of Clinical and Professional Negligence and in Personal Injury, acting both for claimants and for defendants. He also specialises in acting for victims of historic sexual abuse, having recently acted as lead counsel in the first successful claim against the Jehovah’s Witness organisation.
James acts for claimants and financial institutions in claims based upon the alleged mis-selling of financial products and breaches of FSMA and at common law.
His claims work is combined with a busy disciplinary and regulatory practice, regularly representing doctors, dentists, solicitors, accountants and those in the financial services sector in their respective disciplinary tribunals.
Besides defence regulatory work, he regularly represents the Council of Lloyd’s in enforcement proceedings brought against its members by the Society of Lloyd’s and recently conducted an extensive and high profile inquiry leading to successful enforcement proceedings against a Lloyd’s managing agency and its senior officers. James is also an active member of the BSB Prosecuting Panel and has represented BSB in a number of high profile cases against well known barristers in the last year or so.
James acts for claimants in professional negligence claims against a wide variety of professionals, including accountants, solicitors, barristers and surveyors.
James represented the Claimants at trial and in the Court of Appeal (with Gordon Bebb, QC) in a claim against a firm of solicitors and a barrister arising out a claim by a mother for damages for the “wrongful birth” of her son born with spina bifida (Hibbert Pownall & Newton v Whitehead  EWCA Civ;  All ER (D) 60).
He is currently also acting for a series of individual claimants in claims against their financial advisers for the mis-selling of financial products causing losses arising out of the financial difficulties of AIG during the crash of September 2007 and for individual claimants in claims arising out of the sale of fixed interest loans.
Rowse v Nalders LLP (Ongoing)
Acting for claimant in claim for negligent advice as to jurisdiction and powers of Financial Ombudsman and need to bring court proceedings.
Pearson v Georgiou and Others (Trial 2016)
Failing to advise client adequately as to entries on planning register, leading to purchase of property blighted by proposed development.
Hibbert Pownall & Newton v Whitehead  EWCA Civ;  All ER (D) 60)
Claim against a firm of solicitors and a barrister arising out a claim by a mother for damages for the “wrongful birth” of her son born with spina bifida.
Pond v Risdon Hosegood
Conveyancing negligence in failing to spot neighbouring planning application.
Surveyor’s Negligence and other Construction Experts
Downes v Dare
Surveyor’s failure to spot defects.
Mortimer v Flatt
Surveyor’s failure to spot defects.
Blacker & Reeves v Grant
Architect’s failure to carry out proper examination of warehouse floor before alteration work.
Burchell v Bullard
Builder’s defects in residential home, leading to costs appeal in CA.
Prew v Countrywide
Surveyor’s failure to spot defects in mortgage report inspection.
Faraday v Tetley
Accountant’s failure to advise on possibility of non UK residence for tax purposes.
Peryer v Arbuthnot Latham
One of a series of cases where James acted for individual claimants in claims against their financial advisers for the mis-selling of financial products, causing losses arising out of the financial difficulties of AIG during the crash of September 2008.
Thomas v Triodos Bank NV (Trial in 2016)
Acting for Claimant farming business in claim for breach of contract and misrepresentations in selling of fixed rate bank loans by bank.
Wanstall v Clydesdale Bank
Acting for Claimant farm partnership in claim against bank for negligent advice and information in selling fixed rate business loans.
Appointments & Memberships
- European Circuit
- Western Circuit
Areas of Law
- Clinical Negligence
- Disciplinary & Regulatory
- Financial Services
- Personal Injury
- Child & Adult Abuse
- International Illness, Injury & Travel
- Professional Negligence
“His calm, collected style is particularly effective with difficult clients and complex issues.” Professional Discipline & Regulatory Law, Legal 500 2017
“Calm, robust and steady in difficult circumstances.” Financial Services, Legal 500 2017
“Exactly the sort of person you want to take you through a trial.” Banking & Finance, Legal 500 2017
“He’s very detail-focused, he picks up on absolutely everything and he’s very good at digesting large quantities of information in a very short period of time.” Professional Discipline, Chambers & Partners 2017
“unflappable exterior makes him a really polished performer before the panels. He is well received whenever he appears.” Professional Discipline, Chambers & Partners 2017
“Extremely thorough and knowledgeable.” Professional Discipline and Regulatory Law, Legal 500 2016
“Highly experienced in mis-selling and negligence claims.” Banking and Finance, Legal 500 2016
“He’s absolutely superb as he’s very quick on the uptake of issues and has no mannerisms or posturing.” Professional Discipline, Chambers & Partners 2016
“He addresses things in exactly the right way for each individual client.” Professional Discipline, Chambers & Partners 2016
“A well-regarded specialist in financial regulatory, banking and insurance law.” Banking & Finance, Legal 500 2015
“He is always well prepared.” Professional Discipline & Regulatory Law, Legal 500 2015