• Katherine is a Recorder (Crime and Civil) for the London and South Eastern Circuit.
  • She is also an accredited PIcArbs panel arbitrator.
  • Katherine was head of pupillage in Chambers between 2012 and 2020, and continues to take an active part in training of pupils.
  • She was conciliator for the Passenger Shipping Association, as it was then known, between 2010 and 2014, mediating between cruise lines and disgruntled passengers.
  • She was a volunteer barrister for Disciplinary Hearings held by the Council of the Inns of Court from 2009 to 2013.

Expertise

Katherine has immense experience in alternative dispute resolution, and has acted for claimants and defendants in joint settlement meetings and mediations on hundreds of occasions. She has settled claims running into many millions of pounds. She has represented clients in numerous inquests including those with juries, and was instructed throughout the lengthy and high profile inquest arising out of the Sousse terrorist attack in Tunisia in summer 2015.

In addition, Katherine acts in a large number of aviation claims. These range from fatal air crashes to claims arising from faulty ejector seats and seat belt airbags, as well as employers’ liability claims for cabin crew. She was involved in various claims arising out of the Vauxhall helicopter crash, the Germanwings crash, the Jet Airways crash and the Indonesia Air Asia crash, amongst numerous others. She has extensive experience of Convention claims. As part of her growing appellate practice. Katherine has recently been instructed (leading Hannah Fry) in a successful in responding to an appeal before the Privy Council arising out of the theft of an aircraft from a Bahamian airport (The Airport Authority v. Western Air [2020] UKPC 29).

Katherine Deal specialises in all aspects of high value personal injury claims often involving fatal accidents and catastrophic brain injuries of maximum severity. She has a particular expertise dealing with claims arising from overseas accidents or medical treatment, in particular concerning issues of jurisdiction and choice of law. She is widely considered a leading expert on the interpretation and application of Rome II, and acted for the claimant in the first ever decision from the Court of Justice of the European Union to consider the scope of Rome II, Homawoo v GMF Assurances (CJEU Case C412/10).

She has particular interest in the application by the English court of foreign principles of assessment and is very used to working with foreign law experts to achieve the best results. She has acted in some of the largest foreign injury and fatal accident claim ever brought in an English court. As part of her specialism in international claims, she has a growing interest in appeals to the Privy Council, with recent cases involving alleged police brutality in The Bahamas, clinical negligence in Trinidad, road accidents in Mauritius and stolen aircraft in The Bahamas.

She has considerable experience in jurisdictional disputes and has acted in numerous landmark judgments concerning the direct right to sue foreign domiciled defendants in England, including Jones v AGF [2010] IL Pr 4, Thwaites v Aviva Assurances [2010] Lloyd’s Rep IR 661, Panagaki v Minetta SA General Insurance [2015] EWHC 2700 (QB), and, with Howard Stevens QC, Keefe v Mapfre & Hoteles Pinero Canarias SL [2015] EWCA Civ 598, which was considered by the Supreme Court before reference to the CJEU. She has been instructed in numerous cases seeking to re-argue Keefe, including Lackey v Mallorca Mega Resorts SL [2019] EWHC 1028 (QB) and Cole v IVI Madrid SL [2019] 9 WLUK 373, which was referred to the CJEU in late 2019.

She has a particular interest and expertise in claims involving disputes of forum between England and other national courts, as in Le Guevel-Mouly v. AIG Europe Ltd [2016] EWHC 1794 (QB).

She also has extensive experience in package travel claims, acting for and against all of the major tour operators in claims ranging from mass outbreaks of gastric illness in hotels or on cruise ships to deaths overseas. She is currently acting for numerous victims of the Tunisia terrorist attack. She is also instructed on behalf of the claimant in the appeal to the Supreme Court and the CJEU in the case of X v Kuoni Travel Ltd [2018] EWCA Civ 938 which will clarify the law as it relates to liability of tour operators for deliberate assaults overseas.

"She combines her unrivalled knowledge and exquisite advocacy skills with a practical attitude that focuses on the needs of the client." "A very impressive silk with a razor-sharp intellect." "Great with clients - she's very pragmatic and takes a commercial approach." - Travel: International Personal Injury

Chambers and Partners 2021

"She has a phenomenal knowledge of the subject area across all categories of claims, including aviation and serious injury Montreal Convention claims. She's extremely helpful and incredibly approachable. She's a cross-border transaction star in her field." - Aviation

Chambers and Partners 2021

‘Extremely practical, has integrity with opponents, and always provides advocacy of the highest calibre.’ - 2019 Silks - Personal Injury

Legal 500 2021

‘An extraordinary advocate with an unrivalled depth of knowledge. She provides clear written advice and excels at explaining what are often quite complicated technical issues in terms that lay clients can understand.’ - 2019 Silk - Travel law (including jurisdictional issues)

Legal 500 2021

‘She is extremely efficient and knowledgeable about cross-border claims, jurisdictional disputes, and aviation in general. Katherine is an open book and would deal with the cases above and beyond of what she is required to. Her attention to detail is great too.’ - Aviation, 2019 Silks

Legal 500 2021

An excellent claimant barrister whose intellect and determined advocacy has earned her a solid market profile. She specialises in cases regarding personal injury claims and fatal aviation accidents, and has handled cases arising out of incidents ranging from light aircraft crashes to headline-making helicopter and airline disasters. She is particularly adept at handling cases with an international element and speaks several languages. "Nothing fazes her. Always well prepared and up for a fight, she's firm, direct and someone who never backs down." Aviation "She is incredibly academic and very good with details. She is also always quick to respond and is very user-friendly." "She is always at the very top of her game and is a formidable opponent. She is always approachable and accommodating and goes beyond what is asked of her." "She has an encyclopaedic knowledge of travel law." Travel: International Personal Injury

Chambers & Partners 2020

"She continues to be the best of the best when it comes to this area. Her unrivalled knowledge and exquisite advocacy skills combined with a practical attitude that focuses on the needs of the client make her the go-to name in this field." "She is incredibly knowledgeable, very sympathetic to clients and a fearless advocate." Travel: International Personal Injury - Star Individual "I'd use her for anything out of the ordinary or strange. She's just a go-to barrister; she's amazing." "She's technically excellent." Aviation

Chambers & Partners 2019

Ranked Tier 1: Aviation ‘She is diligent, methodical, approachable and demonstrates great empathy towards the claimant’s needs. ’ Ranked Tier 1: Personal Injury, Industrial Disease and Insurance fraud ‘Quick thinker and excellent advocate on her feet. Ranked Tier 1: Travel Law ‘A fountain of knowledge concerning jurisdictional issues, cross-border claims and package travel claims.

Legal 500 2019

Katherine is ranked as one of the 5 most highly regarded juniors for her work in Aviation and Travel, and is described as ‘tenacious’ yet ‘a pleasure to work with.’

Who's Who Legal UK Bar

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