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John McKendrick QC

John McKendrick QC

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John is an experienced litigator and adviser with a diverse practice distinguished by his formidable advocacy, a pragmatic hands-on approach and his ability to build relationships with clients. He was appointed a part time judge at the age of 34 and took silk at 39.

He advises in the areas of public, commercial and regulatory law in the UK, across Latin America and in the Caribbean and is qualified to appear before the English, Scottish, BVI and Anguillian courts. John is a versatile advocate with a diverse practice. He is equally at home making appellate submissions on complex areas of law, as cross-examining witnesses. He has significant trial experience.

John has appeared before the Supreme Court, HM Privy Council, the Court of Appeal, the Divisional Court, the Court of Session (Inner and Outer), the Administrative Court, the Court of Protection, the QBD and Commercial Court and the full range of the Tribunal system.

Between 2016 and 2018 he was the Attorney General and DPP of the British Overseas Territory of Anguilla, in which capacity he regularly appeared before the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court and led the Government’s legal team in all aspects of civil and criminal law. He developed particular expertise in financial services, POCA, banking litigation and further developed his substantial public law experience.

He devotes a significant amount of time to international consultancy work in Latin America and the Caribbean and is currently spending some time as an IDB funded consultant to the Government of Guyana to develop their legal aid system. He has worked on projects for the UN, EU, FCO and IDB. He has worked in Panama, Mexico, Peru, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Guyana, Jamaica, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Colombia. He speaks Spanish.

Court of Protection

John is a leading practitioner in the field of mental capacity and mental health law and has been involved in many of the leading cases which have developed this area over the last five years.

He has particular experience with the overlap between mental health law and education and mental capacity. He has acted for the Secretary of State for Justice in respected of restricted patients and also on behalf of claimants.

He is currently involved in a case being heard before the Supreme Court in respect of the extent of the duty to give reasons when recalling a patient to hospital. John works across all areas including medical treatment, welfare, deprivation of liberty and property and affairs cases.


Southwark LBC v KA [2016] EWHC 661 (Fam)

Kings College Hospital Trust v C [2015] EWCOP 80 Re P. [2015] EWCOP 59; (2015) 18 C.C.L. Rep 392

Mental Health Trust v DD [2014] EWCOP 11[ [2015] 1 F.L.R. 1430

Re X (DOLS) [2014] EWCOP 25; [2015] 1 W.L.R. 2454

An NHS Trust v DE [2013] EWHC 2562 (Fam); [2013] Med L.R. 446; (2013) B.M.L.R.

Re. M (Incapacitated Adult) (best Interests Declaration: Potential Contempt) [2015] EWCOP 3; [2015] 3 W.L.R. 190

Lee-Hirons v SSJF [2014] EWCA Civ 553; [2015] Q.B. 385

Appointments & Memberships

  • Called to the Bar of the Eastern Caribbean (Anguilla and BVI)
  • Attorney General, Anguilla, 2016-2018
  • FATF trained assessor
  • Independent Adjudicator, Marine Stewardship Council
  • ALBA
  • Member of the Faculty of Advocates (the Scottish Bar)


  • Shortlisted for the Lawyer Award, Barrister of the Year, 2016
  • Times Lawyer of the Week


  • Spanish

Areas of Law


Top_tier_firmsJohn McKendrick QC Accreditations


“He develops rapport with clients, counsel and judges alike.” Civil Liberties and Human Rights, Legal 500 2016

“He can navigate strategic issues with real foresight and direction.” Administrative and Public Law, Legal 500 2016

“Recommended for education cases with a commercial angle.” Education, Legal 500 2016

“Probably one of the best Court of Protection barristers out there.” Civil Liberties and Human Rights, Legal 500 2016

“A brilliant and persuasive advocate.” Administrative and Public Law, Legal 500 2016

“He is especially good at assimilating lots of paperwork very quickly and thoroughly. He has a good style in court and judges like him which is very useful.” Chambers & Partners 2016

“Incredibly good at getting a case down to three, four or five pertinent facts, he cuts out a lot of unrelated stuff.” Chambers & Partners 2016

“Quickly and deservedly becoming known as one of the best practitioners in the country who deals with some of the difficult and sensitive issues in Court of Protection litigation. He comes up with creative ways to overcome the most difficult issues in cases. He is also a formidable advocate who really fights for his client.” Chambers & Partners 2016

“He has a tenacious, no-nonsense approach, and is very persuasive and articulate, and first rate with clients.” “Exceptionally bright, he can just take instructions and come up with a plan the next morning. He’s a bit of a magician in that way, and he’s brilliant to work with.” Chambers & Partners 2015

“He has an excellent grounding in Court of Protection and social welfare cases.” Legal 500 2015

“He has significant experience in regulatory judicial review.” Legal 500 2015

“Recognised for his experience acting for leading independent schools.” Legal 500 2015

“A ferocious, skilled, efficient advocate, with a wide-ranging practice. He’s a pragmatic and capable advocate, who understands schools and is extremely popular with clients.” Chambers & Partners 2014

“A responsive, determined advocate,” “he brings clarity and calmness and is extremely good with difficult parties.” Chambers & Partners 2014

“Strong in Court of Protection cases.” Legal 500 2014

He is “an incredibly articulate advocate with a skill for distilling a dispute down to its key elements,” and “presents cases succinctly but thoroughly.” He is praised for his “particular strength in assimilating large amounts of detail accurately and sometimes at short notice.” Chambers & Partners 2013

“Reliable, innovative, conscientious and very committed to clients.” Chambers & Partners 2013


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