We are recognised as the leading set nationwide acting for claimants in this important and growing area, which comprises not only claims arising out of sexual assaults against children, but also the neglect and abuse of the vulnerable generally.

Members of 1COR have acted for the claimant in most of the leading cases in this area. Our members regularly write and lecture on the topic.

We also act in inquiries relating to sexual abuse and have barristers involved with the Rochdale Abuse Inquiry and the ongoing Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse. Members are experienced in claims arising from:

  • Douglas Slade
  • Jimmy Savile
  • Rolf Harris
  • Stuart Hall
  • Max Clifford
  • Fred Talbot
  • Cyril Smith
  • Abuse in football
  • Abuse in the Scouts
  • Abuse in the cadets
  • Abuse in schools
  • Abuse in youth clubs
  • Abuse in the family
  • Abuse at Haut de la Garenne and other Jersey institutions
  • Abuse abroad
  • Abuse over the internet
  • Child sexual exploitation
  • Abuse in detention centres and young offenders’ institutions
  • Emotional abuse and neglect

Notable cases include:

  • CN & GN v Poole BC[2019] UKSC 25: Extent of local authority’s duty to protect against abuse – (Elizabeth-Anne Gumbel QC and Iain O’Donnell for the Claimants).
  • Various Claimants v (1) Ian Patterson (2) Spire Healthcare ltd (3) Heart of England NHS Healthcare Trust (2017): Group action arising out of a surgeon’s sexual assaults and mutilation of patients (Elizabeth-Anne Gumbel QC and Robert Kellar for the Claimants).
  • Various Claimants v Barclays Bank plc (2017): Group action arising out of indecent assaults by a doctor assessing job applicants (Elizabeth-Anne Gumbel QC and Robert Kellar for the Claimants).
  • Archbishop of Southwark (2) The Scout Association v JL [2017] EWCA Civ 82: Limitation and consent in child abuse claims (Elizabeth-Anne Gumbel QC and Justin Levinson for the Claimant).
  • KXL & Ors v (1) Nicholas Murphy (2) The Society of Missionaries of Africa [2016] EWHC QB 3102: Disapplication of foreign limitation period in cases of abuse in Uganda (Justin Levinson for the Claimants).
  • ABC v West Heath [2015] EWHC QB 2687: Sexual abuse by a teacher who caused a pupil to send him indecent images (Justin Levinson for the Claimant).
  • In the matter of the administration of the estate of Sir James Wilson Savile deceased, sub nom National Westminster Bank plc v Lucas & Ors [2014] EWCA Civ 1632: Litigation arising out of the abuse perpetrated by Jimmy Savile and the distribution of his estate to his victims (Elizabeth-Anne Gumbel QC, Henry Witcomb QC, Peter Skelton QC, Justin Levinson).
  • JGE v Trustees of the Portsmouth Roman Catholic Diocesan Trust [2012] EWCA Civ 938: Vicarious liability for Catholic priests (Elizabeth-Anne Gumbel QC and Justin Levinson for the Claimant).
  • AXN & Ors v (1) John Worboys (2) Inceptum Insurance Co ltd [2012] EWHC QB 1730: Claims against “the London taxi rapist” and his insurer (Justin Levinson for the Claimants).
  • Raggett v Society of Jesus Trust [2010] EWCA Civ 1002: Limitation in claim of historic child abuse (Robert Seabrook QC and Justin Levinson for the Claimant).
  • MAGA v Archbishop of Birmingham [2010] EWCA Civ 256: Vicarious liability for Catholic priests (Elizabeth-Anne Gumbel QC and Justin Levinson for the Claimant).
  • A v Archbishop of Birmingham [2005] EWHC QB 1361: Highest ever award of damages in the UK arising out of child sexual abuse (Robert Seabrook QC and Justin Levinson for the Claimant).

1 Crown Office Row is recognised for its expert handling of the full gamut of personal injury disputes. Members receive regular instructions from both claimant and defendant clients, including several government departments, NHS trusts and insurers, as well as private individuals. The set offers expertise across a wide range of matters including catastrophic brain and spinal injuries, historic sexual abuse, RTAs and employers’ liability claims, and its members have experience of appearing in cases before the Court of Appeal, the House of Lords and the Supreme Court. Instructing solicitors draw attention to the set’s bench of “excellent barristers,” noting that it houses “a plethora of very able barristers who are willing to roll up their sleeves and get the work done.”  “The clerking is really good – the team is very responsive.” “The service is excellent and things are always dealt with very efficiently and quickly.” (Chambers & Partners 2020)

Matthew Phipps 1COR

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Justin Levinson discusses vicarious liability in the context of child abuse compensation claims in Radio 4’s Unreliable Evidence programme - Dec 2012


The recording is available here.