Robin Oppenheim QC

Year of Silk


Year of Call

Robin Oppenheim QC

Robin is known for cutting edge work in clinical negligence, personal injury and product liability and is listed as a leading silk in the major directories. In Chambers and Partners 2013 he is described in the fields of clinical negligence and personal injury as "simply astounding", "totally committed and conscientious", one of few counsel in this field who can compete with his attention to detail, total commitment and ability to use the law to his client's advantage”. “A supremely intelligent personal injury silk with a great eye for detail."


In the field of product liability he has been involved in many of the major group action product liability claims both as a leader and as a junior. These include the fetal anticonvulsant, haemophilia and Northwick Park litigations.

Clinical Negligence and Personal Injury

Robin led for a number of the claimants in the landmark Thompstone ASHE 6115 indexation litigation both at first instance and on appeal [2007] EWHC 1441; [2008] EWCA Civ 5; [2008] EWHC 2948) and was previously involved in landmark quantum cases such as Heil –v- Rankin (general damages) [2001] QB 272 and Warren v Northern General Hospital NHS Trust (discount rate) ([2000] 1 WLR 1404). Recently he was successful in a ground breaking appeal on the way causation is determined in third party referral cases (Wright v Cambridge Medical Group [2011] EWCA Civ 669).

The focus of Robin’s practice in the field of clinical negligence is high value catastrophic brain and spinal injury for children and adults with a particular focus on complex obstetric, neonatal, paediatric and spinal claims. He has also developed an expertise in meningitis and meningococcal disease litigation and was successful for claimants in  Langdon -v- Williams [2008] EWHC 741Goby -v- Ferguson [2009] EWHC 92.

In the field of personal injury his work concentrates on severe brain and spinal injury claims, with a particular focus on innovative approaches to quantification, periodical payments, interim payments and community care issues.

Robin has been involved in a significant number of liability and quantum claims of maximum severity clinical negligence and personal injury over the last year and has achieved the equivalent of over £86 million in damages for personal injury and clinical negligence claimants over the last two years in 17 serious injury cases. Recently, in the burgeoning area of contested interim payment litigation, Robin obtained a total award of £2.2m in a wrongful birth case FP v Taunton and Somerset NHS Trust [2011] EWHC 3380].

He writes a number of chapters for the damages section in the APIL Personal Injury Law, Practice and Precedents and Personal Injury Manual, Jordans. He is a contributing author to the PIBA Personal Injury Manual 2007. He writes periodically for journals, such as Clinical Risk and Journal of Personal Injury Law and gives seminars on current topics in personal injury and clinical negligence work. He sits as a tribunal judge for the First Tier Tribunal responsible for criminal injuries compensation.

Product Liability and Group Actions

Robin has been involved in many of the major group action product liability claims over the last decade both as a leader and junior: Fetal Anti-Convulsant litigation (to January 2010), Haemophilia litigation (settled 2010), Northwick Park litigation (settled 2008), Dopamine Agonist Litigation (settled 2008), MMRII, Alder Hey and Nationwide Organ Retention Litigation and the Oral Contraceptive Pill Litigation  among others. Recently he advised in claims arising out of stem cell therapy by MS sufferers and Thalidomide claimants wishing to bring claims in the UK.

Currently he acts for the claimants in the PIP Breast Implant Litigation and claimants suing the manufacturers of Pinnacle and Corin Cormet hip implants and other large metal on metal hip implants. Previously, he has undertaken group actions in physical and sexual abuse litigation and holiday claims.

Robin writes the section on multi-party actions in Bullen, Leake and Jacob, Precedents of Pleading, Sweet and Maxwell, 2012.



Robin advises in relation to costs in group litigation and has done so in a number of high profile group actions. He was counsel for the claimants in the lead case on claimant costs-sharing Sayers v Smith Kline Beecham Plc [2001] EWCA Civ 2017].

Solicitors' Negligence and Professional Liability

Robin undertakes professional negligence claim arising out of personal injury and clinical negligence claims

Mental Health and Court of Protection

Robin has developed a specialism in clinical negligence claims relating to psychiatric care. In 2010 he successfully secured £2.6m in a liability discounted compromise of a claim relating to a schizophrenic patient who attempted suicide in the course of a psychotic episode resulting in paraplegia. He is currently acting for a claimant who has severe brain damage from a hanging incident in hospital and in a potentially ground breaking case for family members who witnessed the killing of their father by a psychiatric patient. He is also leading for the claimant in the forthcoming appeal in the Supreme Court on capacity for litigation purposes in Dunhill v Burgin.


BA Hons Politics and Modern History, First Class, University of Manchester,

Diploma in Law University of Westminster

AvMA Award for Outstanding Contribution to Patient Safety and Justice 2012



Action against Medical Accidents [AVMA]
Professional Negligence Bar Association [PNBA]
Association of Personal Injury Lawyers [APIL]
Amnesty International

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