Stephen specialises in professional liability, medical law, commercial disputes and costs. He acts for and against a wide variety of professionals, including solicitors, surveyors, valuers, brokers, accountants and financial advisers, amongst others. He is ranked as a leading junior in Professional Negligence by Legal 500 who say “he inspires confidence in the clients.’
Stephen also acts for claimants and defendants in clinical negligence claims, and has advised on a broad range of such matters. He combines his work in the fields of professional liability and medical law with expertise in costs. He prides himself on providing practical, commercial advice and being approachable and sensitive to his clients’ needs. He is a robust advocate with broad experience, ranging from the County Court to the Court of Appeal.
Stephen has advised and appeared in cases involving all kinds of professionals, but his work has a particular focus on claims against lawyers. He acts for claimants as well as many of the major professional indemnity insurers.
Stephen has experience of a wide variety of complex claims arising out of lawyers’ alleged negligence, including claims surrounding conveyancing and other property related disputes, lost litigation and allegedly under-settled claims, claims arising out of criminal prosecutions and claims concerning wills and estates. He has also acted in a number of claims by lenders, dealing with allegations of breach of trust, breach of fiduciary duty and breach of warranty of authority, alongside allegations of negligence and breach of contract.
Recent work relating to lawyers includes:
Stephen has acted for and against surveyors and valuers in respect of a variety of claims. He acted for the defendant firm of surveyors in Venus Asset Management Ltd v Matthews & Goodman, where it was alleged that the defendant had given negligent advice in respect of the claimant’s compulsory purchase claim against the LDA. He has also dealt with a number of cases of alleged overvaluation or failure to report material defects.
Stephen has also acted for financial advisers, insurance brokers and accountants amongst others.
Stephen acts for claimants, NHS Trusts, GPs and others in the High Court and the County Court and has experience of a wide variety of such claims. Recent work includes:
Stephen has been a member of Chambers’ Costs Group for several years. He advises on all aspects of costs, including inter-partes and solicitor-client costs disputes, whether arising out of litigation or non-contentious work. He has appeared for both paying and receiving parties at detailed assessment hearings (including challenges to provisional assessments), applicants and respondents to applications for non-party and wasted costs orders, and regularly appears at CCMCs, when he can combine detailed knowledge of costs with an appreciation of the issues in the litigation. Stephen has experience of advising on various costs issues, including: the application of fixed costs rules, costs budgeting, proportionality, assignment of CFAs and Part 36 offers. Recent work includes appearing for a defendant successfully resisting an application by the claimant to amend his costs budget for an 8 day trial and acting for a receiving party at a costs mediation.
Stephen has been instructed in respect of a variety of commercial disputes. He also advises insurers and insureds as to construction of insurance contracts, coverage issues, misrepresentation and non-disclosure amongst other issues. Recent work includes:
Stephen has considerable experience of personal injury claims and claims arising out of road traffic accidents, and regularly appears for both claimants and defendants in multi-track and fast track trials, quantum assessment hearings and interlocutory applications.
His experience includes:
He recently appeared in the Court of Appeal for EUI in the conjoined appeals in McBride v UK Insurance and Clayton v EUI Ltd  EWCA Civ 144, a case concerning the correct approach to assessing damages in credit hire claims.
Clayton v EUI Ltd  EWCA Civ 144. A recent decision of the Court of Appeal providing essential guidance on the correct approach to assessing damages in credit hire claims. Stephen acted for EUI, the successful defendant/respondent, both at first instance and on first and second appeals. The outcome was a major victory for road traffic insurers.
Venus Asset Management Ltd v Matthews & Goodman (2014-2016). Led by Simon Wilton. Defending a surveyor accused of negligence leading to what were alleged to be very large losses referable to the compulsory purchase of premises for the London Olympics.
Adelle Challinor & 20 Ors v Juliet Bellis & Co and Geoffrey Egan  EWHC 347 (Ch). Led by Francis Bacon, Stephen acted for Geoffrey Egan, the second defendant and part 20 defendant, in successfully defending a claim in misrepresentation and part 20 claim for dishonest assistance, breach of trust and breach of warranty of authority in respect of various investment schemes.
”Although he is relatively junior, Stephen already has an in-depth knowledge of solicitors’ negligence issues. He is able to analyse significant levels of documents and draw out the main points. He inspires confidence in the clients.” Legal 500, 2021
Awards & scholarships
Personal: Stephen’s interests include travel, music, film and theatre.
ICO Data protection registration number: Z1931117.
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