James Bentley

Year of call: 2012

James James

James is a specialist personal injury and clinical negligence barrister, who joined chambers after completing his pupillage under the supervision of Gabriel Farmer.

He appears regularly for both claimants and defendants in: fast track and multi-track trials, CCMCs, interlocutory applications, inquests and appeals.

James is happy to consider any case with representation under a CFA and will not levy any fee if prospects are insufficient.

James is flexible, approachable and is already making an impression with instructing solicitors, despite his relatively junior call. He is happy to talk matters through informally on the telephone prior to instruction and aims to turn around any papers within 14 days.

Personal Injury

James has a busy personal injury practice, and is often in court up to four to five times per week. He is instructed by both claimants and defendants in a range of fast-track and multi-track matters, and has experience in cases involving:

  • Road traffic accidents
  • Employers' liability 
  • Fatal accidents
  • Public liability 
  • Highways Act claims
  • Secondary victim claims
  • Pain syndromes
  • Accidents abroad

The value of James's caseload varies, but he is instructed in a number of high five and six-figure claims. 

He is also used to dealing with applications concerned with the interpretation of the fixed costs and QOCS provisions. See for example Magon v RSA, where James acted for the successful claimant/appellant in a case dealing with QOCS and discontinuance.

James is also often instructed in cases involving an element of fraud and/or dishonesty and has recently written a book titled: 'A practical guide to QOCS and Fundamental Dishonesty', and which can be purchased at: http://www.lawbriefpublishing.com/product/qocsandfundamentaldishonesty/

Clinical Negligence

During pupillage James undertook work for every member of the clinical negligence team, exposing him to a wide range of cases. Work undertaken during that time ranged from research around gynaelogical issues to drafting particulars of claim in cases involving the mistreatment of the elderly in care homes and hospitals.

Since completing pupillage, James has built up a successful clinical negligence practice, and is often instructed in five and six figure claims where at least three or more experts have been instructed for each side.

Examples of recent work includes cases involving:

  • Dental negligence resulting in fibromyalgia;
  • The misapplication of radiotherapy;
  • Failure to diagnose an ovarian cyst;
  • Failure to provide adequate nursing care (resulting in the death of the patient);
  • Surgical negligence involving a failed ileostomy;
  • Pressure injuries sustained whilst in hospital and/or a care home.

James is also regularly instructed to appear at inquests, and is happy to do so where there are some prospects of success.

Costs and Litigation Funding

James has been instructed in numerous CCMCs (for claimants and defendants), interim payment applications, and provisional and detailed assessments. His busy personal injury and clinical negligence practice means that he is also regularly instructed to deal with the more discreet points of costs law that involve the fixed costs provisions, the QOCS provisions, and Part 36. Recent examples of such work include:

  • Magon v RSA (a successful appeal on the application of QOCS where a claim is discontinued, but would have been struck out);
  • Appearing for the (successful) claimant in a case involving the application of indemnity costs for the late acceptance of a Part 36 offer;
  • Advising on the applicability of QOCS in a credit hire/personal injury case and successfully obtaining a non-party costs order against the credit hire company.

James frequently delivers training for solicitors and costs firms, and has been invited to speak on costs at national events such as the 2018 conference for the Society of Clinical Injury Lawyers. He also regularly writes about costs related matters for various websites, and has recently written a book on QOCS and fundamental dishonesty, titled: 'A practical guide to QOCS and Fundamental Dishonesty', and which can be purchased here.


For further information and enquiries please contact:

Personal Injury & Clinical Negligence: Wendy Shaw,  Olive Kavanagh & Fern Dorling



  • PIBA


  • BPTC, Kaplan Law School
  • LLM, University College London
  • LLB Hons, University of Exeter
  • Hardwicke Entrance Award, Lincoln's Inn
  • Sir Thomas More Award, Lincoln's Inn
  • Walter Wigglesworth Scholarship, Lincoln's Inn
  • Kaplan Law School Advocacy Scholarship