David Knifton QC

Call 1986
Silk 2018


"A true claimant specialist who is determined to fight for clients."

The Legal 500 2020
Photo of David Knifton QC

Clinical Negligence

David practises exclusively in high-value personal injury and clinical negligence cases, primarily on behalf of claimants. He is recommended as a leader in those fields by both Chambers & Partners and The Legal 500. He will generally only accept new instructions in cases with a value in excess of £1m, and typically achieves settlements each year totalling over £20m.

David has extensive experience of high-value clinical negligence claims, including:

  • Wrongful birth
  • Obstetric injuries, including cerebral palsy
  • Failures/delays in diagnosis (particularly in cancer cases)
  • Consent issues
  • Negligent treatment
  • Claims against alternative medical practitioners

Described by an experienced clinical negligence solicitor as “inspirational to work with”, he wins widespread praise for his thorough preparation, sensitive client-handling, up to the minute legal knowledge, and excellent negotiation and advocacy skills.

Clinical Negligence Cases

C v The Walton Centre for Neurology & Neurosurgery NHS Trust (2018): David negotiated a settlement worth £3.9m on a global basis on behalf of an elderly patient who suffered a haemorrhagic stroke due to a negligent delay in managing her meningioma, in order to enable her to return home to live with her family with a 24-hour care team

H v Mid Yorks Hospitals (2018): An award of £1.7m was negotiated on behalf of a man who required an above-knee amputation due to a negligent delay in diagnosing critical limb ischaemia, ensuring his prosthetic and other needs would be met throughout the remainder of his reduced life expectancy

B v Central Manchester University Hospital (2016): Settlement of £1m negotiated on behalf of 57 year-old man who suffered severe complications as a result of a negligent delay in detecting a leak following abdominal surgery, despite reduced life expectancy

Jones v Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board (2014): Settlement of almost £585,000 negotiated on behalf of young man who suffered an Erb’s palsy due to obstetric negligence when he presented with shoulder dystocia

Boulton v Aintree University Hospital (2013): David secured a settlement of £540,000 for a young woman with spina bifida who underwent a Symes’ amputation as a consequence of a negligent delay in diagnosing an MRSA infection in her foot

Banks v Wirral University Hospital (2014): David negotiated a settlement of £450,000 on behalf of a young woman who had suffered the premature onset of the menopause as a result of a negligent failure to diagnose cervical cancer from a routine smear test

B v Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board (2018): Settlement of over £400,000 achieved for negligent delay in diagnosing HIV infection, leading to advanced HIV disease

White v Crean (2009): Claim for chronic pain suffered due to negligent spinal manipulation by “Bowen” practitioner, in which David negotiated a settlement of £400,000 at a JSM

Porter v Southport & Ormskirk Hospitals (2014): Damages of £300,000 recovered for negligent failure to diagnose fractured scaphoid, leading to loss of promising career as bricklayer

Bapu v Lancashire Teaching Hospitals (2012): A claim for damages resulting from a negligent failure to warn the patient of the risks of developing cauda equina syndrome, which settled for £300,000 despite liability and causation remaining firmly in dispute

Walker v Wirral University Hospital (2014): Delayed diagnosis of wound infection in elderly diabetic, leading to accelerated need for below-knee amputation. Settled for £210,000 despite vigorous opposition by Defendant to amendment of Particulars of Claim

Garfin v Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust (2015): Damages of £175,000 recovered on behalf of the family of a psychiatric patient who had been negligently discharged without implementation of an appropriate psychiatric care plan, despite a significant dispute over causation