Ranked in Chambers and Partners (2024) for Motor Insurance Fraud.
“Richard is a strong advocate who gives good advice.” – Chambers and Partners (2024)
“Robust and tenacious.” – Chambers and Partners (2020)
“Very experienced in clinical negligence matters involving allegations of fraud.” – The Legal 500 (2019)
Richard practises in civil insurance fraud. He was a founding member of the civil fraud team at Sovereign Chambers before the merger which formed Park Square Barristers. Richard is instructed by most of the country’s leading firms specialising in civil insurance fraud and many of the UK’s insurance companies.
Richard has extensive experience in all areas of civil fraud including employer’s liability and public liability, but mainly in relation to road traffic accidents. He has been instructed on numerous occasions in cases involving fabricated, staged and induced (‘slam-on’) accidents, bogus passengers and phantom witnesses, low-velocity impacts (LVIs), and exaggerated personal injury and damage claims.
He has expertise in dealing with individual frauds, group and family frauds, and wider criminally organised fraud rings.
“Recommended for multi-track personal injury cases” – The Legal 500 (2017)
Recently Richard has been instructed as lead Counsel acting on behalf of a number of different insurance companies defending claims in which allegations of psychological injury are made by all claimants that instruct a particular firm of solicitors. Richard has successfully defended all cases which have gone to trial and resisted numerous interim applications made on behalf of the Claimants. He has secured adverse judicial findings against the psychiatrist that has lent support to the claims. It is anticipated that the incidence of claims for psychological injury is likely to increase when the “whiplash reforms” of the Civil Liability Act 2018 comes into force.
Richard also sits as a Recorder in all areas of civil law, including many cases in which fraud is alleged.
Richard is head of the holiday sickness claims team and has been at the forefront of defending such claims. He has provided training to firms and holiday companies to assist in identifying fraudulent claims and strategies to improve success rates. He regularly advises and represents many of the larger holiday companies.
Richard is able to advise at the pre-proceedings stage and to conduct conferences with clients and witnesses to test the strength of their evidence in cases where credibility is crucial. He uses his extensive forensic skills when preparing and drafting the detailed defences essential in civil fraud cases, as well as appropriate part 18 requests and applications for specific disclosure. He deals with all interlocutory applications which might arise in civil fraud cases, and has defended many cases at trial both on the Fast Track and multi-track.
Following the introduction of qualified one-way costs shifting (QOCS), Richard has advised and represented clients in many cases where a finding of Fundamental Dishonesty has been sought.
Richard is a contributor to Butterworth’s Personal Injury Litigation Service.
- Bain v Zurich (Lawtel) – one of the earlier cases which resulted in a finding of Fundamental Dishonesty. Having found that the Claimant was not injured in the accident as alleged the trial judge declined to make a finding of Fundamental Dishonesty. Richard advised the Defendant insurer to appeal, which was successful.
- Evans v Aviva (Lawtel) – Richard secured a finding of Fundamental Dishonesty following the Claimant’s failure to prove his claim in a low velocity impact case.
- Cross v Black Bull – Following the issuing of a claim on the cusp of limitation with an artificially reduced statement of value and court fee, Richard advised the Defendant to apply to strike out the claim as an abuse of process. The application was successful.
- Ennis v Tuson – Issues relating to the nature of “admissions” made within a counter-schedule of loss and the extent to which a Defendant was bound by them.
- Paul v Connell – Case in which the Claimant had no recollection of the accident and relied upon expert reconstruction evidence, which contradicted the lay evidence of a number of witnesses. Richard advised the Defendant to apply for summary judgment, resulting in the Claimant discontinuing her claim.
Lecturing in civil fraud
Richard also lectures and presents seminars on all areas of law relating to civil insurance fraud.
Richard may accept Public Access work, where he can be instructed directly by a member of the public rather than a solicitor.