John Coughlan - Clinical Negligence
In the field of clinical negligence, John has developed a large and varied predominantly Claimant practice, although he accepts instructions from the NHSLA and other Defendant bodies.
John has particular expertise in the following areas: obstetric injury to mother and child, including brain injury; gynaecological failures including failed sterilisations; general surgical error including abdominal surgery and urological surgery; delays in treatment and diagnosis including cancer cases; failed cosmetic surgery; GP negligence; orthopaedic mismanagement; failures surrounding informed consent.
John is particularly adept handling expert witnesses in conference and at Trial and enjoys working closely with the solicitor client on difficult cases.
John has been recommended in the two most recent editions of Chambers UK for his clinical negligence work.
John has recent experience in high-profile litigation surrounding issues relating to IVF and in particular the loss or misuse of frozen gametes and embryos.
John is a member of PIBA, PNBA and AvMA.
John accepts instructions on a conditional fee basis.
BCL (Oxon) 1998
LLB (Hons) (Bris) 1997
Professional Negligence Bar Association
Personal Injuries Bar Association
"No one can beat him when it comes to detail." "He doesn't get flustered at court, even when surprising things happen."
"Exceptionally sharp but also has a way of making clients feel utterly at ease. He is a fantastic litigator, always prepared and incredibly pragmatic with real tactical nous." "John is a very astute practitioner. He is a really good negotiator."
Chambers UK 2017
‘A fantastic barrister, who achieves exceptional results.’
Legal 500 2016
Has a broad clinical negligence practice… and is regularly instructed in high-value claims: “He is efficient and measured; he maintains a calm exterior while being a shrewd and skilled advocate.” "He tells it like it is, and his advice is brilliant."
Chambers UK, 2016
Particularly noted for his handling of catastrophic injury claims, and also maintains a broad personal injury caseload: "He has a really great academic brain and is spot-on with all the technical issues. He is an understated yet very persuasive academic." "I like the fact that he has embraced modern technology - he always gets back to you."
Chambers UK, 2016
‘Immaculately prepared, and unflappable.’
Legal 500, 2015
Instructed across the gamut of clinical negligence work. He predominantly acts for claimants, but is developing a strong defendant practice as well. "He is fantastic; a safe pair of hands for any case of considerable complexity."
Chambers UK 2015
Advises claimants and defendants on catastrophic injury cases, covering brain injury and occupational disease work. "He is methodical and presents points in a strong way."
Chambers UK 2015
‘He has a growing reputation for claimant and defendant clinical negligence work.’
Legal 500 2014
"He has a lovely manner with clients and is great at turning cases around."
"His attention to detail is second to none."
Chambers UK 2014
John Coughlan is noted for his ‘intelligent advice’, and ability to ‘inspire confidence in clients’.
Legal 500 2013
John Coughlan is highly rated by instructing solicitors, who say he is "an excellent advocate whose diligence in preparation and tactical awareness ensure that he always presents cases at trial in such a way as to give the best possible chance of success."
Chambers UK 2013
"...a highly recommended junior who has impressed this year is John Coughlan; sources highlight him for his knack of grasping the details of a case."
Chambers & Partners 2012
Carver v BAA  EWCA Civ. 412 (Part 36 Offers)
Re: H&T (IVF Wales) (Sunday Times, 14th June 2009) (settlement of claim on behalf of parents where frozen embryo aborted after mistakenly being placed into another patient)
Re: PD £1.4m (2010) with Leading Counsel. Complex claim in which a promising IT consultant was assaulted both inside and outside a public house, knocked unconscious into the road and then run over, causing severe head and bodily injuries. Issues of liability, foreseeability, contributory negligence and causation.
Re VC £2.675m (2011) with Leading Counsel. The Claimant was caused catastrophic injuries in a road traffic accident caused by her aunt. There were significant issues of contributory negligence (seatbelt and alcohol) and a vast array of medical and other expert evidence.
Powertrain Group Litigation (2008-10) with Leading Counsel. Group litigation on behalf of former employees of Powertrain at the Longbridge car plant, Birmingham who claimed damages for respiratory disease caused by exposure to contaminated coolant oil. The Defendants were their employers Powertrain and Houghton PLC who supplied the coolant oil and managed them on site during the material period.