1 Winston Hunter QC CALL 1985 SILK 2000 PRACTICE AREAS Personal Injury Clinical negligence Insurance Litigation Professional Liability Commercial Litigation Employment APPOINTMENTS Recorder 2000 Deputy High Court Judge 2008 E: T: F: ASSOCIATIONS PNBA, PIBA, NCCBA Byrom Street Chambers 12 Byrom Street Manchester M3 4PP DIRECTORIES Winston Hunter is recognised by the Directories as a top ranked performer in a number of specialist areas. Some of the more recent entries include: Intellectual heavyweight whose practice encompasses the full range of clinical and medical negligence. He is particularly highly regarded for his expertise in claims concerning the failure of treatment or diagnosis, especially in accident and emergency medicine. Expertise: "He has a fabulous intellect, a wonderful manner with clients, and a phenomenal work rate." Recent work: He was instructed in a claim brought by a mother concerning the failure to advise on screening for Down's syndrome. The case concerned issues of causation and economic loss. (Chambers and Partners 2015 Clinical Negligence) Garners a great deal of acclaim for his work on high-profile and complex personal injury cases for both claimants and defendants. Sources recommend him for his depth of knowledge, and his calm and polished manner in negotiations. Expertise: "He is exceptionally bright and very gifted. He's very calm under
2 pressure, and very good with clients." "He is just hypnotic before the judge." (Star Individual) (Chambers and Partners 2015 Personal Injury) Extremely thorough and knowledgeable. (Legal ) Acts for both claimants and defendants in cases of the highest complexity and severity. He is widely considered to be one of the pre-eminent practitioners within the region. Expertise: "He is a phenomenal operator who is one of the most astute barristers I've ever come across." "He's a top-class trial advocate. He's very persuasive; clients trust him implicitly and he's prepared to the last degree. Nothing surprises him. He takes the stress out of trials." Recent work: He was instructed in a maximum severity tetraplegic claim which concerned the alleged loss of a career as a magic circle solicitor.(chambers and Partners 2014 Personal Injury Star Individual) Called upon by claimants and defendants to handle high-value cases. Sources admire his ability to relate to clients. Expertise: "He is a brain on legs." "You can have complete confidence in his knowledge of the case and his opinion is always sound." Recent work: He was instructed for the defendant in a case involving issues surrounding the cause of an aneurysm. (Chambers and Partners 2014 Clinical Negligence) "a shrewd operator" who is "superb on behalf of both claimants and defendants." (Chambers and Partners 2013 Clinical Negligence) Hailed for his "impeccable advice" by instructing solicitors, which some sources suggest makes him "one of the best catastrophic injury barristers on the Northern circuit." (Chambers and Partners Personal Injury Star Individual) knowledge of the intricacies surrounding brain injury and serious spinal cord cases is second to none (Legal ) a real heavyweight litigator with a silky touch (Legal ) The approachable and accessible Winston Hunter QC is a master of his craft and admired for his phenomenal attention to detail, technical skill and swift turnaround. (Chambers and Partners 2012 Personal Injury Star Individual) Fellow silk Winston Hunter QC frequently acts for both claimants and defendants in very high-value matters and wins the admiration of peers for his methodical and forensic approach to cases. He has a large and varied practice that also takes in personal injury, professional liability, employment and insurance litigation. (Chambers and Partners 2012 Clinical Negligence)
3 Winston Hunter QC s reputation is richly deserved, and he is a leader who has mastered the difficult blend of dealing with complex issues in a way that clients can comprehend. (Legal Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence) 2010 saw Winston Hunter QC at Byrom Street Chambers handle several highprofile contractual matters. (Legal Chancery and Commercial Litigation) Winston Hunter QC is regarded as a charming, able and impressive opponent. He handles numerous multimillion-pound maximum severity cases and fatal accident claims. (Chambers and Partners 2011 Personal Injury) routinely acts in very high-value cases for claimants and defendants. Clients say Hunter is very clever, sees all angles and is passionate about his work. (Chambers and Partners 2011 Clinical Negligence) Winston Hunter QC brings an incisive intelligence and fearsome negotiating skills to cases. (Legal Chancery and Commercial Litigation) regarded by clients as technically gifted on cases involving government or local authority funding issues. Peers find him a very doughty opponent who is to be feared" (Chambers and Partners Personal injury) PERSONAL INJURY Winston Hunter is routinely instructed by both claimants and defendants in cases of maximum severity. In the recent past he has been instructed in some of the highest values claims with several of his recent or current instructions involving damages awarded or claimed in excess of 15 million. A particular feature of many of his instructions is where there are complex claims for loss of earnings arising from injuries to professionals such as bankers, lawyers and accountants or senior directors of large companies and other high net worth individuals. Concluded cases Fatal Accident Act claim for widow of young healthy Chairman and Chief Executive of FTSE 100 company. Claim pleaded at over 20 million (and settlement) reputed to be the largest ever arising from personal injuries. Highly complex claim financial claim with each party relying on multiple financial experts addressing the issues of share options valuation, loss of financial benefits and dependency claim on interest earning capital.
4 Claim for damages arising out of minor RTA. Claimant was Associate Solicitor with Magic Circle firm. Damages for past and future loss of earnings claimed in excess of 8million on the basis of loss of career as equity partner. Complex medical issue as to precise cause of alleged pain in the absence of any physical injury. Defendant accepted some future disability subject to medical issue but contested claim as to nature of lost career and correct legal principles in valuation of the same. Claim for damages for injuries of maximum severity. Claimant child aged 2 at accident, aged 17 at trial. Claimant requiring highly skilled 24 hour nursing care, presently cared for in residential setting. Complex issues as to responsibility for funding of future care needs and as to court s ability to award damages by way of PPO against insurer in liquidation. Case settled by way of complex reverse indemnity relating to periodical payments. One of the largest ever claim for damages for stress related illness due to alleged harassment and bullying at work. Claimant was a Consultant within PCT. Damages claimed at over 7million. Complex issues relating to whistle blowing of allegations of misconduct against senior colleagues. Six week trial due to commence in January Settlement shortly before trial subject to comprehensive confidentiality agreement Complex claim involving contribution proceedings against hospital relating to treatment of C who was negligently injured by G. M Hospital raised issues of breach and causation which were finally resolved in favor of G. C's claim complex due to combination of injuries that required 24 hour care by team of trained nurses costing 500,000 pa. Case settled in 2009 for what is said to be the largest ever PPO in respect of care. Sample current cases Fatal accident claim pursued by widow of senior equity partner in major city law firm. Very significant loss of dependency claim. Major issues relating to calculation of loss and valuation of outside business interest. Claim ongoing. I was instructed on behalf of the Defendant. Fatal accident claim in respect of solicitor in large city practice but with significant and complex commercial and property interests. Significant legal issues as to approach to loss and valuation of interest. Complex claim for damages by blind, tetraplegic claimant with some brain damages. Action ongoing due to complex issues relating to security of periodical payments.
5 Issues if resolved by court will involve ruling on a novel and important issue relating to the powers of the court under the Damages Act Several claims involving individuals with severe injuries including tetraplegic ventilator dependant adult and children with complex co-morbidities and adults with profound brain damage resulting in locked in state, PVS or low awareness. Complex issues relating to venue of care, the statutory responsibility of the NHS to provide care and the role of the Court of Protection under the Mental Capacity Act in determining the appropriate venue for long term care on grounds of best interest. Claims involving funding of ongoing care where PCT involved in funding care but wish to argue that a claim for damages by the Claimant amounts to an election to waive any right to PCT funding irrespective of extent of recovery, and /or that the PCT acts lawfully in deciding that the individual no longer has any reasonable need for PCT services. CLINICAL NEGLIGENCE Winston Hunter has a significant caseload in the area of clinical negligence. His practice covers all areas of medical mal practice. He has particular expertise in claims involving wrongful birth and failure of diagnosis and treatment in Accident and Emergency Medicine, and the complexities of quantification arising from claims for loss of a chance of a better outcome. Concluded cases Complex claim arising from breech delivery. Child with minimal early signs of distress but later diagnosis of developmental abnormalities in early infanthood. Issues of breach and causation. Competing explanation for radiological evidence of deep brain infarcts. Role of neonatologists and other experts in identifying most likely cause amongst a number of competing causes. Claim for damages arising from failed termination. Infant born with severe disabilities. Claimant pursuing damages for future cost of care and other losses on the basis that disabled child will reside with her for life. Measure of damages. Failure to diagnose skin melanoma. Claim defended of basis of less than 50% chance of successful treatment had timely diagnosis been made. Complex medical and statistical evidence as to correct approach to statistical data on chances of successful outcome. Issue as to difference between legal and clinical definition of successful outcome.
6 GP failure to diagnose early signs of meningitis. Duty of GP, causation issues relating to allegation that non negligent range of response by hospital would have led to similar time delays. Burden of proof as to what would have happened. Absence of direct evidence as to what would have happened. Role of experts in identifying what would have been best practice. Relevance of financial constraints within individual Trust. GP failure to advised on and provide vaccination to individual within target group for mumps immunization programme. Causation. Effectiveness of vaccine had it been provided. Infant suffering apparent mild concussional head injury. Accident and emergency admission. Failure to admit infant for observation. Whether negligent. Discharge advice to parents. Re-admission. Failure to admit to ward and or to monitor. Major intracranial bleed. Duty to and timing of CT scan. Causation. Apportionment between joint tortfeasors. Sample current cases Admission of Claimant to hospital following assault. Failure to carry out CT scan. Claimant's condition diagnosed as due to intoxication. Delay in diagnosis of basal skull fracture and intracranial bleed. Major brain damage leading to cognitive deficit. Breach of duty. Causation. Apportionment of damage between initial injury and failure to diagnose. INSURANCE Winston Hunter is regularly instructed in claims arising out of repudiation of policies for alleged non disclosure and issues relating to the construction of insurance contracts. Particular expertise exists in claims relating to motor vehicle insurance Concluded cases Engagement of independent contractor. Whether terms of engagement entitled contractor to benefit of Employers Liability insurance and thus benefit of significantly higher level of indemnity. Issues highly relevant to ability of claimant to secure periodical payments. Court of Appeal: Whether description of part time employment by insured made material by the term of the motor policy. Whether insurer entitled to avoid policy for material non-disclosure.
7 Terms of combined motor policy and tractor policy obtained by farmer. Whether plant hired by contractor to third party resulting in accident covered under terms of either policy. Delay in notifying insurers, whether insurer entitled to treat duty to report as condition precedent to liability under the policy. Historic market hall destroyed by fire. Construction of policy. Re-instatement costs under insurance. Whether insurer required to indemnify to extent of re-instatement of building to standard existing at time of fire or in accordance with modern building regulations. Sample current cases Court of Appeal (and ECJ): Appeals arising out of interpretation of section 151(8) Road Traffic Act 1988 and compatibility with Article 13 of 2009 Motor Directive. Accidental fire resulting in destruction of block of residential flats. Claim under public liability policy. Whether fire as result of negligence and if so whether insurer entitled to avoid. Delay in notification. Whether report made as soon as practicable. Whether insurer required to demonstrate detriment as a consequence of any delay. PROFESSIONAL LIABILITY Winston Hunter receives instructions in a wide range of cases involving the negligence of professionals. He has particularly expertise in cases involving claims alleging loss of a chance. Many of his instructions relate to solicitors failure in pursuing litigation appropriately and in advising clients. Concluded cases Solicitors negligence: failure to advise client as to appropriate defendant in claim for dust nuisance leading to close of business. Claim for loss of a chance of favourable outcome had correct defendant been sued. Correct measure of loss where business would have been affected to some extent but might not have failed absent nuisance. Effect of claim where nuisance contributed to by number of parties not all of whom would have been sued in the original action. Solicitors negligence: failure to progress litigation. Claimant's date of knowledge. Nature of the facts of which the Claimant must have knowledge before time starts to run. What is the 'damage' of which the Claimant must have knowledge?
8 Sample current cases Solicitors negligence: joint venture agreement in respect of development of land. Failure to advise as to terms of agreement. Solicitors' duty to advise professional client as to implication of bargain negotiated by client when drawing up formal document to reflect negotiated terms. Scope of contract of retainer. PERSONAL INFORMATION Married Three children Interests gardening, wine, watching others play sport the way he always aspired to but never managed to achieve. LECTURES, SEMINARS AND PUBLICATIONS Winston Hunter lectures widely to clients and fellow professionals on a wide number of topics. He is regularly invited to Chair and deliver lectures to professional bodies. He is a regular contributor to the Byrom Street Evening Lecture Programme. Recent lectures papers and seminars include the following: Unpicking Fatals Schedules: The Principal and Value of Dependency Mental Capacity Act 2005 Accommodation and Care Public Funding An overview of Legal Principals and Approach Receivers in Brain Injury Claims A Defendant s Perspective Damages under the Human Rights Act 1998 Professional Negligence for Personal Injury Solicitors
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