"Inspires confidence in all that he does: he is a superb advocate and a real team player."

Winston Hunter QC

Call: 1985 | Silk: 2000

Email: Winston.Hunter@byromstreet.com

Head of Chambers

 

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Chambers & Partners 2017 (Clin Neg)

"Has experience on both the defendant and claimant side of complex cases, including crossover personal injury cases in which doctors fail to spot early signs of more serious injuries. Also advises on wrongful birth, obstetrics and adult-acquired brain injury cases."



PRACTICE AREAS

Personal Injury
Clinical negligence
Insurance Litigation
Professional Liability
Commercial Litigation
Employment



APPOINTMENTS

Recorder 2000
Deputy High Court Judge 2008

 

ASSOCIATIONS

PNBA,
PIBA,
NCCBA



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.

 

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 2009. 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. 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 1996.

 

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.Personal Injury



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.

 

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 Litigation

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.

 

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?

 

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.

Directory Comments

A catastrophic injury specialist who also has extensive knowledge of issues surrounding loss of earnings and insurance indemnity. Renowned for the high calibre of his advocacy and technical expertise, he acts for both claimants and defendants in high-value, complex cases.


Strengths: "He has a encyclopaedic knowledge of catastrophic injury work and his breadth of experience is incredibly wide. He's also got the ability to assimilate a huge amount of information and deliver high-quality advice at very short notice." "Inspires confidence in all that he does: he is a superb advocate and a real team player."


Recent work: Represented the claimant, a former senior partner at a global law firm, in a high-value claim for loss of career following injuries sustained in an accident.

Chambers & Partners 2017 (PI)

 

Excellent practitioner with a wealth of experience across the spectrum of clinical negligence matters. He is noted for his comprehensive knowledge of issues in claims of wrongful birth, delay in diagnosis and failure of treatment in accident and emergency medicine.


Strengths: "I was particularly impressed with his approach - he is intellectual and compassionate."


Recent work: Acted for the defendant in a case concerning complex causation issues regarding a patient who lost their vision following a road traffic accident.
Chambers & Partners 2016 (Clin Neg)

 

Instructed in high-value catastrophic injury cases by both claimants and defendants, including complex loss-of-earnings disputes and insurance indemnity cases. Sources acclaim his ability to identify key issues and his incredible knowledge in the area.


Strengths: "He is superb - a really skilful silk who can hold the court in the palm of his hands." "He is very articulate and able to deal with complex cases. He is approachable, friendly and supportive."
Chambers & Partners 2016 (PI)

 

"His knowledge of the law and relevant issues is second to none."
Legal 500 2016

 

 

 

“He has considerable experience in the field of asbestos litigation.”
Legal 500 United Kingdom 2015

 

 

“Receives acclaim from solicitors for his advocacy skills in severe personal injury cases. He handles a range of claims, and is recognised for his experience in asbestos-related disease work.


Expertise: "He is an impressive advocate who is very thorough, with an admirable intellect and a good deal of pragmatism." "He's utterly dependable, and really wants what is best for the client.”
Chambers and Partners 2015 – Personal Injury

 

 

“Excellent with clients.”
Legal 500 2014

 

 

“Has a wide-ranging personal injury practice, including serious and catastrophic injury claims in which he acts primarily for claimants. He is recommended in particular for his expertise in industrial disease work.

 

Expertise: "In any area of serious personal injury he's absolutely top-notch - somebody you can absolutely rely on." "He's incredibly thorough with a meticulous eye for detail, and he's particularly adept at high-value complex quantum case.”
Chambers and Partners 2014 – Personal Injury

 

 

“A highly regarded disease and serious injury advocate." Impressed instructing solicitors describe him as "an absolutely top-notch junior," and note his "meticulous eye for detail and considerable experience of handling asbestos litigation”
Chambers and Partners 2013 – Personal Injury

 

 

“Recommended within Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence"
Legal 500 2103

 

 

“hugely impressive in his clear and calm approach to difficult legal issues”
Legal 500 2012

 

 

“is head and shoulders above the vast majority of counsel, including some silks”
Chambers & Partners 2012

 

 

“lawyers admire his ‘superb client skills and impeccable presentation’ and judges value his ‘first-rate command of the law and excellent advocacy”
Chambers & Partners 2012

 

 

“has a reassuring manner with clients … very good at breaking down complex issues for the benefit of the lay client.”
Chambers & Partners 2011

 

 

“Simon Kilvington is one of the most highly praised juniors in the field”
Chambers & Partners 2010