“He’s very personable and very good on technical engineering cases – he has a good understanding of the evidence.”
Chambers & Partners
Colin McCaul is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. He was called to the English Bar in 1978, became a QC in 2003 and is a Bencher of Gray’s Inn.
He is a member of 39 Essex Chambers but now acts solely as an Arbitrator and has acted in that capacity in excess of 300 arbitrations, with a reputation for being “fair but firm”.
As an advocate, his practice fields included professional liability, damage to property and to persons, toxic torts, insurance, consumer protection and sports related disputes. His clients were drawn from a wide range of sectors, including: Formula 1, engineering, construction, shipping, health, tourism, hospitality, manufacture, energy and telecommunications. He was lead Counsel in a group pharmaceutical action and has an in depth knowledge and understanding of biostatistics and epidemiology.
In relation to toxic torts, he was instructed in more than 200 asbestos cases involving oil refineries, ships, docks, power stations, railways, aircraft, factories, construction sites, telecommunications and hospitals. Cases included contractual disputes involving identification of asbestos, its encapsulation and removal, performance of surveys and air monitoring. He also acted in associated claims involving contaminated stock and loss of profits caused by asbestos contamination and suspension of trading. He advised in relation to one of the largest former asbestos sites in the UK as regards the responsibilities and potential liabilities in the development of that site.
In 2014, he was appointed by the Lord Chancellor on behalf of the Ministry of Transport to sit as an Arbitrator to hear appeals brought under the Motor Insurers’ Bureau Untraced Drivers Agreement. He continues to act in that capacity.
He is a panel member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Business Arbitration Scheme and is a member of the Scottish Arbitration Centre.
He has a particular interest in sports and sports Arbitration. He is a member of the Sports Law Association of Malaysia and completed the AIAC Certificate Programme in Sports Arbitration in 2017 (course directors Professor Richard McLaren and Paul Hayes SC), recording the highest mark ever awarded in the Award Writing Assessment of 93%.
He is a past Chairman of Advocacy at Gray’s Inn. His seminal work, “Teaching Advocacy without Tears” has been adopted in numerous jurisdictions as an essential part of their teaching programmes. He has taught advocacy in Malaysia, India, South Africa and Germany. He has served on a number of committees of the Inns of Court College of Advocacy, having most recently been involved in the ICCA’s work on expert evidence and its joint production with the Royal Statistical Society of “Statistics and Probability for Advocates”. His most recent article, “The Challenge of Expert Evidence”, was published in Counsel Magazine in February 2018.
He is consistently recommended for Personal Injury in Chambers & Partners, where he is praised for his client-handling skills, and ranked as a leading silk. He is recommended in the Legal 500 for Environmental law, Health & Safety law, Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence and Healthcare.
“Tactically astute, and approachable.” Legal 500 2015
“Highly regarded for his experience in asbestos-related cases both in the UK and abroad.” Legal 500 2015
“Tactically astute, approachable and delightful with clients. He is full of common sense and excellent on particularly complex RTAs.” Chambers & Partners 2015
“Extensively experienced pair of hands’” Legal 500 2014
“Extremely intelligent.” Legal 500 2014
“Recommended for asbestos-related litigation.” Legal 500 2014
“He provides clear, well-thought-out advice.” Legal 500 2014
“He’s very personable and very good on technical engineering cases – he has a good understanding of the evidence.” Chambers & Partners 2014
‘meticulous’ and ‘always accessible’, and has ‘an astounding grasp of the technical detail’. Legal 500 2013
“very good technical skills and attention to detail” legal 500 2012
“tactically astute and approachable,” and “delights clients with his excellent bedside manner.” Chambers & Partners 2012
“ A good, solid performer in catastrophic injury cases” Chambers & Partners 2011
“approachable and knowledgeable.” Chambers & Partners 2010
A “delightful opponent” Colin McCaul QC has “good client rapport, excellent advocacy skills and a remarkable knowledge of the relevant litigation” Chambers & Partners 2009
Health & Safety
R v Hertfordshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust 
(1) Ashok Jain (2) Nisha Jain v Trent Strategic Health Authority (House of Lords)  1 AC 853,(Court of Appeal  QB 246,  2 WLR 456)
No duty of care owed by a public health authority to the proprietor of a nursing home whose registration was cancelled.
Environmental & Planning
De La Mare v Chief Land Registrar (ChD) 1 May 2003 Lawtel 1/5/2003
The defendant’s appeal from a master’s order releasing the claimant from certain sanctions was dismissed as the master had reviewed the factors in CPR 3.9 and reached a decision that he was entitled to reach.
Thames Water Utilities Ltd v Digginwell Plant & Construction Ltd (TCC) 24 June 2002 (2003) Env LR 433
A remedy under s.20 Water Act 1989, where available, was not intended to preclude any other remedy, either under some other statute or arising because what amounted to a breach of a requirement to which s.20 of the Act applied also gave rise to other rights.
Personal Injury & Clinical Negligence
Groves V Studley  EWHC 1522 (QBD)
Road Traffic – negligence; apportionment of liability
Devoy & William Doxford & Sons Ltd (QB)  EWHC 1598
Fatal Accidents Act, damages
Knott v Newham Healthcare NHS Trust (CA)  EWCA Civ 771
Nurse succeeded in a claim for damages for back injuries where the employer hospital had inadequate arrangements for lifting patients and where the precipitating cause of the injury was a non-work related injury.
Sheriff v Klyne Tugs (Lowestoft) Ltd (CA) 24 June 1999  IRLR 481;  ICR 1170
The employment tribunal had jurisdiction to award damages for a claim for personal injury which had been sustained by the appellant arising out of his employment. Under the principle of public policy, claims that have been or could have been litigated in one tribunal, should not be allowed to be litigated in another.
Trent Strategic Health Authority v Jain & Anor 15 February 2013  UKHL4
Carlo Saulle v Olivier Nouvet (QBD)  LS Law Medical 201,  EWHC 2902
In determining whether a claimant had capacity to manage his own property and affairs and to conduct the litigation, the court was required to apply the definition of capacity within the Mental Capacity Act 2005 in deciding whether he was a protected party.
(1) E H Humphries (Norton) Ltd (2) Thistle Hotels Plc v Fire Alarm Fabrication Services Ltd (CA) 10 November 2006  EWCA Civ 1496,  1CR 247
Represented Thistle Hotels in a successful appeal to the Court of Appeal concerning the duty of care of the occupier of a building to the employee of a sub-contractor.
(1) Thames Trains Ltd (2) Railtrack Plc v Michael Adams (QBD) 20 January 2004  EWHC 3291 (QB)
Offer and acceptance re enhanced offer to settle a claim for injuries incurred in the Paddington rail crash in the sum of USD 9.8million; Solicitors’ powers and duties; unconscionability; unilateral mistake.
Hewison v Meridian Shipping Pte and others (CA) 11 December 2002  1CR 247
A merchant seaman whose claim for loss of earnings or for loss of his congenial sea-going career following a work-related accident depended on the proposition that he would have continued deliberately to conceal his epilepsy from his employer was, as a matter of public policy, prohibited from pursuing that claim.
Rowntree v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis (QBD) 26 October 2001
A police officer was awarded damages for two mental breakdowns caused by her employer’s negligence.