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David Platt QC

Call 1987 • QC 2011

"One of the best QCs of his generation."
(Chambers & Partners)

Personal Injury

David undertakes all aspects of personal injury work and acts for both claimants and defendants. This often involves injuries of utmost severity and other catastrophic claims. He has considerable experience in claims for “subtle brain injury” and other neurological litigation. He frequently deals with psychiatric claims and all forms of somatic disorders. He has been instructed in major rail crash litigation (Ladbroke Grove) and in other disaster litigation (such as the Battersea Crane Collapse). He is regularly instructed in substantial road traffic claims, sports injuries and general employer liability work, and also specialises in local authority and police liability. Related product liability work is undertaken.

He also specialises in all forms of industrial and occupational disease, in particular: all types of asbestos cases (described as “brilliant on asbestos claims” in the Legal 500), stress and harassment at work, abuse cases, NIHL and cancer claims, upper limb disorder litigation, asthma, dermatitis, VWF, and COSHH claims and now Covid-19 claims. He undertakes discrimination related claims, and associated disputes involving the Employment Tribunal.

His abuse work involves claims against local authorities and individual private sector organisations.

He is highly experienced in group litigation and is currently instructed in the British Steel Coke Oven Workers Litigation (GLO).

As a former broadcaster for the BBC, he has undertaken litigation work for both ITN and the BBC in several high profile media injury claims.

He is frequently consulted in personal injury and other common law claims in the Channel Islands and has considerable experience of Jersey and Guernsey procedure and litigation. This has frequently involved issues related to discount rates for future loss. He often travels to the Islands for conferences and mediations. He has also been instructed on claims in the Isle of Man, most recently in Yoxall v Moore [2015].

He is rated in all the major Directories as a leading silk in this field. He has been nominated for the 2020 Personal Injury Silk of the Year award by The Legal 500.

Selected Cases

  • Bannister v Freemans Plc [2020] EWHC 1256 (QB).  Landmark judgment on low exposure claims, de minimis concepts and materiality in asbestos litigation. Judgment here. The Claimant’s application for permission to appeal was refused by the trial judge [2020] EWHC 1625 (QB) –  judgment here. The application before the Court of Appeal was likewise refused.
  • Turner & Others v Ministry of Defence [2019-2021].  Instructed by MoD in ongoing group NIHL claims brought by some 3,000 former and current service personnel against the MoD. The claims are for alleged noise damage whilst in training and on active service in a variety of theatres over several decades.
  • Collective Aerotoxicity Litigation [2017-2021] EWHC 543 (QB)]; Re Richard Westgate Deceased; Re Matthew Bass Deceased [Inquests, 2017-18] – Instructed by BA and other airlines in leading claims by air crew for “aerotoxic” injury caused by organophosphates in cabin air.
  • Goldscheider v Royal Opera House [2019] EWCA Civ 711; [2018] EWHC 687: High profile noise claim against the Royal Opera involving an allegation of “acoustic shock” by an orchestra member. Appeal to Court of Appeal succeeded in part.
  • British Steel Coke Oven Workers GLO (Hutson v TATA Steel) [2016-2021] EWHC 1608;  [2018] EWHC 107; [2017] EWHC 2647; [2016] EWHC 3031- Major group litigation involving large numbers of cancer and respiratory claims against the former British Steel.
  • Clements Smith v Berrymans Lace Mawer [2019] EWHC 1904 (QB).  Precedent judgment on the entry of judgment in default of defence (on appeal).
  • X Children v Minister for Health and Social Services [2016-2018] Royal Court of Jersey.  Major child abuse litigation involving a consideration of very substantial future care losses on an enhanced Helmot v Simon discount rate.  Largest PI claim ever to be heard in a Court in British Isles.
  • McGowan v AMEC [2017] WL 02212899, Manchester High Court, Andrews J – Mesothelioma and evidential inferences.
  • Heneghan v Manchester Dry Docks & Others [2016] 1 W.L.R. 2036 – Court of Appeal affirmed the first instance judgment of Jay J. on causation and damages in asbestos-induced lung cancer claims and gave definitive guidance in this area.
  • Humphrey v Aegis Defence Services [2017] 1 W.L.R. 2937– Claim arising from activities in Iraq and the application of a “desirable activity” defence under the Compensation Act 2006.
  • Ross v Lyjon [2016] – Leading first instance claim on latency and causation in Noise Induced Hearing Loss claims.
  • Sloper v Lloyds Bank [2016] EWHC 483 (Spencer J) – A complex mesothelioma claim where Lloyds Bank were successful in defending allegations of asbestos exposure at their branches.
  • Yapp v Foreign Office [2015] I.R.L.R. 112 (Contract, Employment & Personal Injury) – In overturning an award of damages for psychiatric injury, the Court of Appeal gave detailed advice on claims for breach of contract and personal injury.
  • Yoxall v Moore [2015]– Discount rate and catastrophic personal injury.  Instructed as advisory counsel to Isle of Man advocates for the Defendant on the appropriate discount rate to be applied on the Island.  The Defendant was successful in resisting a move to a negative common law rate.
  • Siddiqui v University of Oxford & Balliol College (2015-17)– A highly unusual claim by a former undergraduate for personal injury following allegedly deficient tuition.
  • Lloyd v Humphries & Glasgow [2015] EWHC 525 (QB) – Abuse of process litigation involving successive disease claims against different defendants in different actions.
  • Collins v Secretary of State for Business and Stena Lane Ferries [2014] P.I.Q.R. P19; [2014] EWCA Civ 717 (Limitation) – The leading Court of Appeal decision on the assessment of prejudice in long-tail disease claims.
  • Davidson v Aegis Defence Services (BVI) Ltd [2014] 2 All E.R. 216; [2013] EWCA Civ 1586 (Limitation) – An important appellate authority on Section 33 of the Limitation Act 1980 and its application to a personal injury claim arising from the conflict in Iraq.
  • Longthorn v NPower [2013] – HHJ Richardson (Harassment, discrimination and stress at work). A major claim for allegedly discriminatory behaviour at work failed on the facts applied to decided case law.
  • Matthew v Collins et al [2013] EWHC 2952 (QB) – Precedent judgment on tissue samples in asbestos claims.
  • Sayers v Chelwood [2013] 1 WLR 1695; [2012] EWCA Civ 1715; (Limitation & NIHL) – Leading appellate authority on burden of proof in S33 applications under Limitation Act 1980.
  • The Employers’ Liability “Trigger” Litigation [2012] 1 WLR 867; [2011] 1 PIQR P2 & [2009] Lloyd’s Rep IR 295 – The major multi-party asbestos / insurance litigation. He acted at first instance before Burton J, in the Court of Appeal and in the lengthy hearing before the Supreme Court in December 2011.
  • MacLennan v Hartford Europe [2012] EWHC 346 – Stress at work and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.
  • Bristow v Barts & London NHS Trust [2010] EWHC 1969 (QB) – A substantial claim by a Consultant for serious personal injury in his own operating theatre.
  • Darg v Metropolitan Police & Venson Plc [2009] EWHC 684 (QB) – Complex Regional Pain Syndrome and credibility.
  • Williams v Jervis [2008] EWHC 2346 – Subtle brain injury.
  • Majrowski v Guys & St. Thomas’ NHS Trust [2006] UKHL 34 – The leading case on statutory harassment under the 1997 Harassment Act. Majrowski also dealt with important issues of vicarious liability); House of Lords [2007] 1 AC 224; Court of Appeal reported at [2005] QB 848; [2005] 2 WLR 1503.
  • Hartman v South Essex Mental Health Trust et al [2005] ICR 782 (group stress at work litigation)
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  • MA (Law) Trinity Hall, Cambridge (scholar)


  • London Common Law & Commercial Bar Association
  • Personal Injuries Bar Association
  • Professional Negligence Bar Association


“He is a very good advocate who is always on top of his game and is well respected by both clients and opponents.” “He is bright, enthusiastic and extremely experienced in high-level disease cases.”

Chambers & Partners, 2021

“A real expert when it comes to dealing with complex medical and scientific issues and handling multiple experts on these issues.”

Legal 500, 2021

“A top-quality barrister who really knows his area.”; “He’s a very impressive advocate and has a good head for complex issues.”

Chambers & Partners, 2020

“Always immaculately prepared, demonstrating mastery of the papers. He has a prodigious intellect and is also highly personable and approachable. He understands the value of relationships.”

Chambers & Partners, 2018

“His courtroom manner is confident. He presents the arguments in a clear and logical fashion.”

Chambers & Partners, 2018

“He never wastes a word and just instinctively knows what the pressure points are for a judge.”

Chambers & Partners, 2016

“His knowledge of the relevant areas dealing with asbestos litigation is second to none.”

Chambers & Partners, 2016

“He is the consummate tactician and a natural negotiator.”

Legal 500, 2016

“A persuasive advocate who is excellent at assimilating the detail of a case in a short space of time.”

Chambers & Partners, 2015

“He has an excellent understanding of complex medical and legal issues.”

Legal 500, 2015

“His legal skills are a given; he’s someone you’re happy to be locked in a room for a day. He’ll get on with your clients and adds something with his advice.”

Chambers & Partners, 2014

“A powerful weapon in any case” and “provides superb advice.”

Legal 500, 2014

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