Product Liability

"The members of Fountain Court Chambers' expertise ranges from pharmaceutical and consumer product group actions to acting for clients in claims relating to industrial, marine or aviation products."


The Legal 500

A number of Fountain Court members have significant product liability practices, involving a broad range of experience ranging from substantial pharmaceutical and consumer product group actions to individual sale of goods disputes and complex claims across various sectors.

Some of our members benefit from scientific backgrounds, providing invaluable experience when dealing with what are often highly complex technical or statistical issues. We have experience of dealing with issues such as the incorporation of contract terms, exclusion clauses, conflicts of laws and defects, including under the Sale of Goods Act. Our members also specialise in identifying the evidence behind any alleged defective design, pleading the technical causes of defect, and advising on the incorporation and applicability of contractual exclusion clauses.

Fountain Court members have been involved in some of the highest profile product liability claims in recent years spanning a number of sectors, calling upon our expertise in those areas, including aviation, healthcare, insurance and technology. For example, we have advised on a number of product liability disputes involving aircraft including claims resulting from fatal incidents.

Examples of the high-profile matters on which our members have advised include:

  • The Grenfell Tower civil litigation
  • The Diesel Emissions litigation
  • The Hormone Pregnancy Tests litigation
  • Pandemrix (swine flu) vaccine
  • PIP breast implants litigation
  • The Atomic Veterans’ litigation
  • The BSE/vCJD litigation
  • Aspirin/Reyes’ Syndrome
  • Whooping-cough vaccine litigation
  • Blood products litigation (Haemophilia/HIV/Hepatitis C)
  • The 3rd Generation Oral Contraceptive litigation
  • The long-running MMR litigation
  • Foetal Anticonvulsant Litigation
  • The Porton Down litigation (relating to human experimentation with nerve agents)
  • The Human Growth Hormone litigation

Our work includes cases relating to:

  • Aviation-related claims
  • Claims involving medical devices
  • Disputes relating to pharmaceutical products
  • Claims relating to consumer products
  • Sales of goods disputes
  • Disputes over contractual terms including exclusion clauses
  • Points relating to conflicts of law

  • De Costa & Ors v The London Fire Commissioner & Ors: Acting for the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in relation to civil claims arising out of the Grenfell Tower fire.
  • Hormone Pregnancy Test Litigation: Acting for the Department of Health and Social Care in high-value and complex group litigation arising from the use of hormone pregnancy test tablets which were allegedly teratogenic and led to miscarriage, stillbirth and life-long development injuries.
  • Grand Canyon helicopter loss: Acting for Airbus Helicopters in proceedings before the UK Coroner concerning the fatal accident of an EC-130 helicopter in the Grand Canyon which led to five deaths.
  • Airbus v Generali: Acting in relation to a subrogated claim brought by the insurer of an airline in Italy concerning the design and manufacture of the main landing gear of the A320 aircraft, raising issues relating to the application and scope of contractual warranties as well as the existence of underlying defects.
  • BAE Systems v Edward Dewhurst Ltd & Others: Acting in a commercial product liability claim by the owners of an aircraft testing facility designed for testing fighter aircraft, relating to a new fire protection system and significant damage caused to the aircraft.
  • Goodlife Foods Ltd v Hall Fire Protection Ltd: Acting for the defendant in a negligence claim arising out of the supply of a fire suppressant system.
  • PIP Breast Implant Litigation: Acting on behalf of a clinic defendant in litigation arising out of the use of industrial (as opposed to medical) grade silicone in breast implants.
  • The Atomic Veterans Litigation: Acting for the Ministry of Defence from first instance through to the Supreme Court in defence of a group action alleging personal injury as a result of alleged exposure to ionising radiation whilst witnessing the British atomic tests in Australia and the South Pacific in the 1950s.
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Product Liability Barristers

Michael McLaren QC

Michael McLaren QC

Call 1981 | Silk 2002

Charles Bear QC

Charles Béar QC

Call 1986 | Silk 2003

Leigh-Ann Mulcahy QC

Leigh-Ann Mulcahy QC

Call 1993 | Silk 2009

Akhil Shah QC

Akhil Shah QC

Call 1990 | Silk 2010

Anneliese Day QC

Anneliese Day QC

Call 1996 | Silk 2012

Ben Lynch QC

Ben Lynch QC

Call 2001 | Silk 2020

Louise Merrett

Call 1995

Simon Paul

Simon Paul

Call 2013

Philip Brook Smith QC

Philip Brook Smith QC

Call 1982 | Silk 2002

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Contact our clerks

For more information on our experience or to discuss a particular case, please contact us.

Call:    +44 (0)207 583 3335
Email: clerks@fountaincourt.co.uk

"Fountain Court Chambers is noted for its expertise in product liability cases arising in the aviation, marine and industrial sectors."


Chambers & Partners

"Its barristers are regularly called upon to act in disputes concerning alleged defects in the design and manufacture of aircraft and helicopters."


Chambers & Partners

"Additional areas of strength for the team include claims arising from defective household goods, medical devices and pharmaceuticals, and the set's tenants are experienced in the handling of both individual claims and large group actions."


Chambers & Partners

"Well respected for the breadth of its product liability practice."


Chambers & Partners

"Members skilfully advise on claims pertaining to consumer, industrial and medical products, and also offer unique expertise within the aviation sector."


Chambers & Partners

"Fountain Court barristers continue to be popular among both claimants and defendants involved in product liability litigation."


Chambers & Partners

"Fountain Court Chambers has a number of barristers with product liability litigation experience. The set's members have been involved in some of the largest cases in the field in recent years."


The Legal 500

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