Robert practises in the field of personal injury and medical negligence. He acts for Claimants and Defendants in road traffic work. He holds a specialist interest in Employers’ Liability. He also undertakes work in public liability and disease litigation. Robert has undertaken work in a wide range of clinical negligence cases, including claims against hospital trusts for negligent obstetric treatment at childbirth and failure to diagnose in orthopaedic treatment. He has successfully defended actions brought against physiotherapists for alleged negligent treatment.
Robert regularly acts in cases involving very significant injury, including brain injury, both individually and being led.
AREAS OF PRACTICE
Acting For Claimants
Acting for a Claimant who remained in full time work subsequent to serious leg injuries suffered in a road traffic accident. Advising over a few years on the presentation of the claim. At JSM the claim was compromised at £850,000.
Acting for a Claimant in a clinical negligence claim arising out of a negligently performed bowel injury. Causation and quantum were disputed. At JSM the claim was settled for a lump sum payment of £750,000 together with a PPO of £120,000 per annum for life’
Acting on behalf of a quarry man that suffered multiple physical injuries when he fell 30 feet from the quarry face, eventually culminating in below knee amputation. Liability remained in dispute. The claim involved expert evidence on the geological condition of the quarry and the systems of work in place, in particular the restraint techniques for working at height. Contributory negligence was very much a live issue. There was a significant dispute between the parties on quantum. At JSM the parties reached a compromise in the sum of £1.5 million.
Acting for an elderly Claimant that had suffered below knee amputation in a road traffic accident. The Claim concluded at JSM against Leading Counsel for the Defendant in the sum of £1.1 million.
Acting on behalf of a Claimant who was knocked down by a bus, suffering brain injury. At JSM, the claim settled at £3.05 million, with an assumed gross value (contributory negligence not having been formally agreed) of £6.1 million.
Acting for a Claimant at JSM against leading Counsel for the Defendant. The Claimant suffered significant brain injury as a passenger in a vehicle involved in a road traffic accident. Contributory negligence was raised. The Claimant was unrestrained and aware that the driver was over the legally prescribed limit. The Claim settled at JSM in the sum of £2.1 million, net of the alleged reduction for contributory negligence. That aspect was not formally agreed but in the region of 20% – 25%, which resulted in a gross award in the region of £2.6 – £2.8 million.
Acting for a Claimant in a claim for clinical negligence. The Claimant suffered very significant leg injuries in a road traffic accident, for which he was at fault. There was a failure to diagnose a vascular injury, which eventually resulted in an above knee amputation. It was necessary to distinguish between that disability which the Claimant would have suffered in any event from that additional disability and loss occasioned as a consequence of the amputation. The Claim settled at JSM for £950,000.
Acting for a Claimant miner who recovered just under £700,000 after suffering serious internal injuries whilst working underground in a local colliery’
Re A; acting on behalf of a Claimant who suffered CRPS. The claim settled at JSM for in excess of £400,000
Re X: Acting for a Claimant who suffered a compression fracture to her lumbar spine in a jet ski accident. Liability was disputed in the first instance and necessitated evidence from a marine expert. The Claimant went on to develop a significant psychotic episode requiring inpatient admission and ECT treatment. This in turn was alleged to have resulted in problems with memory and cognitive function. There was a significant dispute on medical causation between the respective psychiatrists and in respect of the neuro-psychological evidence. The Claim settled on the first day of trial at £250,000.
Acting on behalf of a Claimant police officer who was medically retired following a subtle brain injury. The claim settled in the sum of £575,000.
Acting on behalf of a Claimant who suffered a hernia at work who subsequently went on to develop schizophrenia it was contended as a consequence of the material accident. The claim settled in the sum of £750,000 (gross).
General Case Information
Acting on behalf of a young male Claimant with serious spinal injuries following a road traffic accident. The Claimant suffered incomplete tetraplegia and significant urological problems. The Claim settled following JSM in excess of £2million gross on a provisional damages basis, reduced by 25% to reflect the failure to wear a seatbelt.
Acting for a paraplegic Claimant where the Claim settled at a JSM against leading Counsel for the Defendant with a lump sum of £1 million and thereafter lifetime annualised periodical payments, resulting in a gross value in the order of £2½ million.
Acting for a brain injury Claimant who suffered injury as a 5 year old child in a Road traffic accident. The Claim settled following a Joint settlement meeting at £1.1 million. The claim was complicated in particular by an unrelated serious diabetic condition.
A v B Acting for a Claimant against a Trust in a clinical negligence dispute arising out of the late diagnosis of neck cancer. Liability and quantum were both in dispute. The case settled following negotiation at £500,000
Junior Counsel, being led by David Stockdale QC in an action for the victim of a road traffic accident sustaining serious head injury, blindness and brain damage. Periodical payments order with the gross value of the settlement being in excess of £2.2 million
Acting for a number of Claimants in actions arising out of the Selby rail crash, both individually and whilst being led, resulting in substantial payouts;
Acting for a Claimant with complex regional pain syndrome, being led by David Stockdale QC. Liability and quantum were both in dispute. There were issues over engineering and medical evidence. The claim settled at £500,000 at round table conference;
Acting for various Claimants with catastrophic brain injuries, with claim values well in excess of £1million
Acting For Defendants
Acting as Junior Counsel for a Defendant in a case where there was a significant brain injury, pleaded in excess of £3million. The claim settled after 3 days of evidence in the High Court at £500,000;
Acting for a Defendant in a very significant injury claim, pleaded in excess of £1million. The Claimant only obtained judgement for £200,000. The Claimant’s costs were reduced by 50%, to take into account his conduct. The litigation involved medical experts and a handwriting expert;
Robert has undertaken work in a wide range of clinical negligence cases, including claims against hospital trusts for negligent obstetric treatment at childbirth and failure to diagnose in orthopaedic treatment. He has successfully defended actions brought against physiotherapists for alleged negligent treatment. He has undertaken cases against eye clinics for negligently performed laser treatment. He has undertaken numerous dental negligence cases against NHSand private dental practitioners, including work involving the alleged ex post facto amendment of medical records.”
Nelson –v- Clear Springs Management (2007) 1 WLR 962 : (2007) 2 All ER 407 : (2007) HLR 14 : (2006) NPC 103 : Times, October 5, 2006. Service of proceedings and setting aside judgement entered at trial;
Hartley v Sutherland Architects  EWCA Civ. 976. Part 36 offers and payments into court.
In particular arising out of accidents at work, Road Traffic accidents and where there are allegations of sub-standard medical treatment.
Acting for family members in an inquest in relation to the death of a patient admitted to hospital with rib fractures. She subsequently deteriorated over a number of days eventually succumbing to her injuries.
The Legal 500
“Excellent on his feet and with clients”
“Known for acting in cases involving serious injuries.”
“Known for acting in cases involving serious injuries.”
“Assimilates information quickly and refines arguments effectively”
“Excellent with clients and always happy to help”
“St Pauls Chambers is experienced in catastrophic injury, fatal accidents, industrial disease and clinical negligence disputes. Robert Smith successfully settled a claim for a paraplegic client in a case which involved numerous complexities. Motor insurance fraud and credit hire claims are other areas of expertise.”
“Robert Smith is meticulous in his attention to detail”
“Clients recommend Robert Smith for his PI and clinical negligence expertise”
“at the top of his game in this field” “consistently high-quality advice” “lightning at turning papers around”
“Shows ‘a scrupulous attention to detail’
“extremely diligent and attentive to detail”
“Never fazed and always delivers”
“Gives clear sensible advice…”
The Latest News and Cases From Robert Smith
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FILTER BY EXPERTISE
Head of Chambers
Simon Bickler QC
Nigel Sangster QC
Richard Barraclough QC
Simon Myerson QC
Bryan Cox QC
Jane Bewsey QC
Sam Green QC
John Harrison QC
Andrew Haslam QC