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Katie Ayres

Call 2014

Professional Liability

Katie has experience of a wide variety of claims against professionals, including solicitors, surveyors, consultants, brokers, and construction professionals. She is particularly interested in duty of care arguments.

Katie accepts instructions in solicitor’s negligence claims and is regularly instructed by the internal solicitor’s negligence team at a significant nationwide firm. The underlying claims range from simple personal injury actions and conveyancing transactions to complex commercial disputes. Katie also has experience of dealing with the insurance ramifications of such claims.

She has particular experience of claims that relate to the misconduct of litigation and also claims involving residential and commercial conveyancing transactions. She has also been involved in a number of wasted cost claims involving both solicitors and barristers.

Katie also has significant experience of dealing with professional negligence claims against social workers in the context of abuse law. She is adept at analysing significant quantities of social work records and interpreting expert social work evidence on breach of duty. As a result of the developing law in this area Katie has significant expertise in drafting strike out/summary judgment applications on points of law.

Katie is the author of the Professional Negligence chapter in Kemp & Kemp.

Selected Cases

Accountants & Financial Professionals:

  • advising on a claim against an accountant for negligent accounting on the purchase of a business leading to an overvaluation.
  • a claim against a financial advisor in respect of negligent retirement tax planning advice.
  • appearing at trial in a claim against a financial advisor in respect of cross-border tax advice upon the purchase of a property abroad.
  • advising in a claim against an accountant for offering advice in relation to the valuation of a company where to do so exceeded the scope of his retainer and went beyond his expertise.



  • a claim against a broker for failing to procure cover which adequately covered the risk of unnecessary litigation.


Construction professionals:

  • advising a homeowner in relation to the negligent construction of a load-bearing lintel in a converted basement.
  • advising a main contractor in relation to a claim for a faulty roof on an extension. It was unclear whether damage to the roof was in fact caused by the neighbouring property.



  • a high value “lost litigation” claim against a solicitor in relation to negligent handling of a complex underlying personal injury claim concerning shoulder dystocia.
  • advising on a claim against a solicitor for failing to accurately reduce a settlement agreement to writing and making an application to rectify the agreement on the grounds of unilateral or common mistake.
  • a claim against a barrister for failing to advise on limitation under the Civil Liability Contribution Act 1978.
  • a claim against a barrister for under-settling a personal injury action at JSM by failing to take account of an updated CRU Certificate.


Surveyors & Valuers:

  • a claim against a surveyor relating to a property purchase in Spain. The claim involved complex issues of jurisdiction and consideration of foreign law.
  • a claim against a surveyor for undervaluing a new-build property development by failing to take into account the property’s proximity to a main road which would have become operational once the final stage of the development was complete. It was argued that to identify the proximity of road networks that would be constructed in the future was beyond the scope of the duty assumed and that in any event there was no loss.


Social workers:

  • a claim for failure to remove 4 siblings from the care of their birth mother due to abuse suffered at the hands of a neighbour.
  • a claim for failing to provide adequate educational provision for a child taken into care.



  • a claim for failing to provide Special Educational provision to a child pursuant to an EHCP.
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“Katie exhibits excellent command of the case facts and the law, and expresses herself concisely to excellent effect.”

Legal 500, 2024

“Highly intelligent.”

Legal 500, 2024

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