Specialisms & expertise
James is a specialist in the fields of clinical negligence and personal injury and has a wealth of knowledge in both areas. James’ specialism in clinical negligence has been acknowledged by his admission onto the prestigious AvMA Specialist Clinical Negligence Panel. He is also recognised in the leading independent guide to UK law firms, Chambers UK for being, “an extremely thorough practitioner”. James is also named in one of the principal guides to the profession, The Legal 500, where he is described as “very sound on tactics”.
James' medical negligence claims have involved a wide variety of issues, some examples include:
- negligent spinal surgery
- cerebral palsy
- delayed sepsis diagnosis and treatment (leading to acquired brain injury)
- delay in the diagnosis of cancer (ovarian, melanoma and colorectal)
- limb amputation (often as a result of poorly treated vascular conditions and leg ulcers)
- negligent surgical treatment, including cholecystectomy, nephrectomy, colectomy, arthroplasty, bariatric
- negligent cancer resection procedures leading to severed urethra and ureter
- substandard ophthalmic treatment, including retinal detachment and blindness
- negligent gynaecology procedures leading to ‘wrongful birth’
- misdiagnosis of a range of life threatening conditions including necrotising fasciitis
- substandard management of patient's care by general practitioners
- negligent cosmetic surgery (plastic surgery claims)
- Fatal Accident Act claims arising out of hospital negligence
James' personal injury claims span all aspects of employer's, product, and occupier's liability claims, including cases involving:
- head injuries (including all elements of acquired brain injury)
- spinal injuries
- multiple orthopaedic injuries
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other severe psychological disorders
Client stories & notable cases
Mr Scudder v Brighton and Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust (Issued with the High Court)
The claimant in this case underwent, what was supposed to be a routine spinal operation to his thoracic spine. The surgeon appeared to use a surgical technique that had been abandoned as too dangerous in the 1970’s, and as a result during his spinal surgery, Mr Phil Scudder suffered a profound spinal cord injury which has left him wheelchair dependent for life. This story was covered by BBC News South East today: Apology for man paralysed following spinal surgery.
Damages recovered: £4.1million
A v East Kent Hospitals NHST (Issued with the High Court)
James acted for a client who sustained a significant brain injury following a mismanagement of sepsis in hospital. As well as issues surrounding hypoxia, this case also involved ICU syndrome and PTSD which developed as a result of the lengthy stay in intensive care.
Damages recovered: £2million
Mr A v Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust (Issued with the High Court)
James acted for a client who had to have an above the knee amputation following repeated failures to diagnose that he had an ischaemic leg. The case was complicated by the fact the negligence had caused a ten year acceleration to the loss of a limb that would always have required amputation.
Damages recovered: £560,000
Mrs P v Mr L (Private Neurosurgeon) (Issued with the High Court)
James recently settled a claim against a private neurosurgeon. The negligence in this claim surrounded both the consent process as well the fact that he attempted a spinal fusion procedure despite the fact the relevant spinal level was in fact already fused at the time of surgery. The claimant suffered continuous back and leg pain as a result of the negligence.
Damages recovered: £581,000
Mr H v East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust (Issued with the High Court)
Settling just four weeks before a full trial in the High Court this claim involved a negligent failure to diagnose a rectal abscess, which developed into a complex ‘horseshoe’ abscess.
Damages recovered: £380,000
Mr F v Origin Enterprises and another (2016) (Issued with the High Court)
James acted for a pianist who suffered catastrophic leg injuries to both legs when he was crushed against a wall by an articulated lorry.
Damages recovered: £560,000
Mrs C v Dr Cox [General practitioner] (Issued with the High Court)
This claim was against a GP, and involved the failure to diagnose bilateral acute closed angle glaucoma, which in turn led to permanent damage to the patient’s eyesight.
Damages recovered: £150,000
Mr R v Queen Victoria Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (Issued with the High Court)
A case involving a failure to manage an elderly claimant’s falls risk appropriately in hospital, which led to the claimant sustaining a major hip fracture requiring surgery and leaving him highly dependent on others on a day to day basis.
Damages recovered: £200,000
Mr M v Medway NHS Foundation Trust (Issued with the High Court)
This case involved a failure to diagnose a form of hip fracture called a slipped upper femoral epiphysis (SUFE), in a child. This led to accelerated acute arthritis and the need for additional hip surgery that would otherwise have been avoided.
Damages recovered: £250,000
Mrs P (on behalf of Mr P deceased) v Kings College Hospital NHS Trust
A negligent failure to continue with IV antibiotics in the Intensive Care Unit following the diagnosis of meningitis contracted after brain surgery, leading to avoidable death.
Damages recovered: £70,000
Mr P v Kent County Council (Issued with the High Court)
This case involved a minor traumatic brain injury (TBI) caused when a faulty sash window in a local school fell onto the claimant’s head. The claimant’s brain injury caused a permanent balance disturbance due to an associated vestibular disorder.
Damages recovered: £200,000
Mrs S v Waterstones Booksellers ltd
A personal injury claim involving an elderly lady who fell in a shop and required a complete shoulder replacement procedure which led to permanent restrictions.
Damages recovered: £127,000
Mr C v East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust (Issued with the High Court)
A clinical negligence claim involving a negligent failure to identify a traumatic injury to the claimant’s urethra during a resection procedure for colorectal cancer.
Damages recovered £130,000
James read law at The University of Wales Aberystwyth where he obtained an honours degree and went on to complete his Legal Practice Course at the College of Law in Chester. He joined Thomson Snell & Passmore in 2006 and became a partner in 2017. James is married with three children and enjoys hiking in the mountains and all things ‘outdoors’.