Professional Negligence

View our Specialists in Professional Negligence

Winners of the prestigious ‘Professional Negligence Set of the Year‘ (2020) award by Chambers & Partners UK. 4 New Square are renowned for being the top set in the field of Professional Negligence.

Chambers regularly win the Chambers & Partners ‘Professional Negligence Set of the Year’ and Members of Chambers frequently win silk or junior of the year in this area and individuals have been recognised as ‘stars’ in the directories. Moreover, we have more individuals ranked in the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners for professional negligence than any other set. In short we boast not only star individuals but unrivalled strength in depth.

‘Offers unparalleled capabilities in this area, regularly attracting key instructions for and against professionals in the legal, financial and insurance sectors. The set excels in any case involving advice on financial planning, investments, tax liability, property or the conduct of litigation. It is notable for its deft handling of the high-value – such as an estimated £1.5 billion claim brought by the Danish tax authority against funds and their advisers – and the legally complex, including a number of recent cases on limitation, or causation, or successor practices in claims against solicitors. The barristers have continued to appear before the appellate courts in high-profile cases such as Sir Christopher Evans v PwC and Matthew v Sedman. They attract high praise from instructing solicitors, who say: “It is the best professional negligence set in the country: the strength and depth it has is phenomenal.”‘– Chambers & Partners, 2021

‘4 New Square ‘is one of the go-to sets for professional negligence work’, and is highlighted for its ‘tremendous strength in depth’, with ‘a wide range of excellent barristers available to assist’. The ‘approachable and user-friendly’ set is experienced in cases involving professionals from across the spectrum. – Legal 500, 2021

Members of chambers appear in many of the most prominent and high value professional negligence cases.

Jackson & Powell on Professional Liability, the leading practitioner book on this area of law, continues to be edited in house.

Cases range from multi-million pound claims in a wide variety of commercial contexts to claims by private individuals who feel they have been let down by their professional advisers. We act in cases involving the full range of professions and are experienced in cases with an international element.

Whatever the claim, whatever the profession and whether acting for the claimant or the defendant, we bring to it both an understanding of the underlying circumstances and experience of similar cases.

Our work in this area extends to issues of professional indemnity insurance, including disputes as to avoidance or denial of cover and as to the meaning and effect of policy terms.

Recent cases involving members of chambers include:

  • Re One Blackfriars Ltd [2021] EWHC 684 (Ch)4NS successfully defended the former administrators of One Blackfriars in a £250m claim by the liquidators of the company who claimed the former administrators allegedly sold off a company asset at a substantial undervalue. Trial took place in Summer 2020 and was (at the time) the longest remote trial in the Business & Property Courts
  • Skatteforvaltningen v Solo Capital Partners LLP [2020] EWHC 1624 (Comm), a £1.5billion claim in the Commercial Court arising from allegedly fraudulent withhold tax reclaims submitted on behalf of pension funds and custodians purportedly engaged in dividend arbitrage trading.
  • Various Claimants v Giambrone & Law – claims totalling c£20m against solicitors instructed in respect of proposed purchases of off-plan properties in Italy which collapsed.  A key issue in the case concerns the aggregation of claims.  After various hearings in the case in the High Court and following two appeals to the Court of Appeal, proceedings in the aggregation dispute are due to be issued in 2021.
  • BPE Solicitors v Hughes-Holland [2017] UKSC 21, a seminal decision of the Supreme Court relating to the scope of professionals’ liability for damages where members of Chambers appears on both sides.
  • Lowick Rose LLP v. Swynson Ltd and another [2017] UKSC 32, a leading Supreme Court decision on the scope of the doctrine of collateral benefit (otherwise known as res inter alios acta) alongside the concepts of transferred loss and equitable subrogation based on unjust enrichment.
  • Harlequin Property (SVG) Ltd v Wilkins Kennedy [2016] EWHC 3188 (TCC) – High profile claim against accountants for US$60m in relation to development of a luxury resort in the Caribbean.
  • Aspect Contracts (Asbestos) Ltd v Higgins Construction plc [2015] UKSC 15 – Landmark Supreme Court decision concerning the interaction between statutory limitation and adjudication.
  • AIB Group (UK) Limited v Mark Redler & Co Solicitors [2014] UKSC 58, the leading Supreme Court decision on the assessment of equitable compensation in claims for breach of trust and breach of fiduciary duty.