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James Osborne

James Osborne

London and the South
Membership Status: Barrister - Full Member Called in 2006 Public Access Accredited BSB Guidance for Public Access
Bar Standards Board - Regulating Barristers
Barristers in England and Wales are regulated by the Bar Standards Board


General Information

James is an experienced family and general commercial barrister. His practice areas include commercial, property, and costs, but he offers solid experience across a broad range of related civil areas, including trusts, wills and probate and the Court of Protection.

A skilled courtroom advocate, James has a reputation for getting to the core issues in a case quickly and tackling them effectively. He offers reliably sound judgement, pragmatic legal advice and an analytical approach to his instructions. James provides a very approachable service and is always happy to discuss initial issues that his clients may face in dealing with claims.

Before becoming a barrister, James worked as in-house counsel for a global FTSE 100 company for eight years dealing with high value commercial contract negotiations. He brings a wealth of business experience to his practice, which is primarily focused on general commercial and property work.

Areas of law

  • Property Law
  • Commercial Law
  • Family Law
  • Costs
  • Court of Protection
  • Personal Injury
  • Chancery

Property Law

James has a long-standing property and land law practice and frequently advises and represents claimants and defendants in the county courts and the land tribunal in a wide range of property law disputes, including:

  • Landlord and tenant (commercial and residential)
  • Dilapidations and disrepair
  • Building disputes
  • Service charge disputes
  • Restrictive covenants
  • Boundary and neighbour disputes
  • Rights of way and easements
  • Forfeiture proceedings
  • Possession and eviction
  • Charging order applications
  • Mortgage repossession actions (for both lenders and borrowers)
  • TOLATA / Trust of land disputes

Commercial Law

James is instructed by commercial clients from a range of different sectors in relation to all manner of business disputes. With his background of working in-house within a commercial enterprise, James has the direct operational experience required to understand complex business issues. He offers specific technical knowledge of broadcast and satellite communications, telecommunications and high value commercial contracts and is frequently instructed on:

  • Breach of contract
  • Company law (partnership and shareholder disputes)
  • Insolvency and bankruptcy (commercial and individual)
  • Financial services claims
  • Debt recovery
  • Consumer Credit Act

Family Law

James is instructed in all stages of family cases, from initial pre-action advice in consultation through to representation at contested hearings (including fact-finding hearings and final hearings). He offers a great deal of experience in:

  • Matrimonial finance, including Inheritance Act provision and financial settlement proceedings
  • Contested child arrangements, including applications for contact and residence
  • Injunctive proceedings, including non-molestation, prohibited steps and occupation orders


With a great deal of experience representing claimants and defendants in costs disputes, James is frequently instructed to attend costs budgeting and detailed costs assessments hearings. He often attends detailed assessments nationally and regularly appears at the Senior Courts Costs Office (SCCO).

Court of Protection

James accepts instructions in Court of Protection matters, including:

  • Deputyship
  • Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DOLS) 
  • Lasting powers of attorney and enduring powers of attorney
  • Mental capacity
  • Medical treatment
  • Best interests decisions
  • Welfare, including contact, residence and care decisions

Personal Injury

James advises and represents claimants and defendants in all areas, including:

  • Allegations of fraud of personal injury-related claims, mainly arising from road traffic accidents, employers' liability and public liability
  • Member of the Motorcycle Group tackling serious injuries (he also has a motorcycle licence)
  • Injuries arising from accidents involving HGVs and buses
  • Credit hire (claimant and defendant)

James's involvement is frequently from the outset, from assessing and advising on prospects to advising on quantum, drafting pleadings, drafting questions, conferences with witnesses, round table meetings and onto trial.

James was instructed in the first instance and on appeal (both successful) regarding a slip and trip/Highways claim against a London borough: Simson v London Borough of Islington, [2013] EWHC 2527 (QB), setting a new precedent requiring inspections to include area under objects on the highway such as parked cars and refuse bins.


  • Disputes relating to trusts
  • Contested wills
  • Probate and Inheritance Act claims


  • Association of Contentious Trust and Probate Specialists (ACTAPS) training
  • Bar Vocational Course, BPP Law School
  • Graduate Diploma in Law, BPP Law School
  • BSc (Hons) Geography, Manchester University/Granada University, Spain


  • Socrates Erasmus Scholar, Manchester University

Areas of Law

James Osborne is happy to accept instructions as counsel who is:

  • Land & Property
  • Family Law
  • Road Traffic
  • Land & Property
  • Business & Commercial Law
  • Clinical Negligence
  • Costs
  • Inquests
  • Professional Negligence
  • Construction inc Adjudication
  • Wills & Probate
  • Inheritance Act Claims
  • Court of Protection
  • International Law
  • Personal Injury
  • Land & Property
  • Public Access Accredited
  • Business & Commercial Law
  • Family Law
  • Credit Hire Specialists
  • Road Traffic
  • Credit Hire (Defendant Insurance Team)
  • Consumer Rights Act
  • Admiralty Law
  • Professional Regulation
  • Tax
  • Public & Administrative Law
  • Commercial Arbitration & ADR inc Adjudication

Outside of these key areas of law, James Osborne is always willing to consider any enquiry requiring the experience or knowledge needed to help you or your client. Please call James direct or the support team on 01823 247 247 if you would like to discuss any aspect of this profile.

Cases and Publications

Reported Cases:

Simson v Islington Borough Council [2013] All ER (D) 230 (Jul)

This is a personal injury / Highways Act case which was initially won in the county court before Recorder Bowdery QC and subsequently (successfully) defended on appeal. In the appeal court, Lord Justice Lewis set a new precedent that a parked vehicle in a residents bay ought to have been moved as there was a nearby defect that should have alerted the council's inspector to further investigate the area under the vehicle, whereupon the index defect would have been discovered.

Fees and Feedback


Details regarding our approach to fees can be found at the following link:


Please see “profile” tab for a description of the legal services provided by this barrister.

We aim to complete and return all paperwork within 14 days (2 weeks) of receipt if no specific deadline is provided. We can work to much faster timescales if requested or we can agree a specific target date for each individual circumstance. We will always advise at the outset if counsel is unable to meet any deadline.

Each barrister has a standard hourly rate for their work. The individual hourly rate can be agreed when instructions are acknowledged if preferred. We welcome early discussion as to the suitability of a specific barrister for a specific case. The right barrister will have the relevant expertise to deal with the case but will not be too junior, or too senior depending on the complexities.

We aim to allocate all cases to the correct level of experience & seniority which we believe will prove most to be the most cost-effective solution for our clients.

If, due to urgency, we allocate paperwork to a more senior member of Clerksroom, we will charge the appropriate hourly rate for the work, not for the barrister. We welcome early discussion to ensure the correct fee is applied to the case at the outset.


All our barristers are regulated by the Bar Standards Board (BSB) and hold a current practising certificate, details can be found at the following link Barristers’ Register

Complaints information

If you are not satisfied with the service provided, you can make a complaint to Chambers. Information on the chambers’ complaints procedure is available at the following link:

If you are not satisfied with the response you receive from my chambers, you can make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman. You must contact the Legal Ombudsman either within 6 months following the conclusion of our handling your complaint, within 6 years from the date of the act/omission, or 3 years from the date that you should reasonably have known there were grounds for complaint (if the act/omission took place before the 6 October 2010 or was more than six years ago).

The Legal Ombudsman’s details are as follows:

Legal Ombudsman
PO Box 6806
Tel: 0300 555 0333
Email: [email protected]

Privacy Notice

1.              This is a privacy notice that describes how, why and for how long I will process or keep your personal data in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation (‘GDPR’).

2.              The GDPR governs how an individual’s personal data is used, and your rights in relation to that data.

3.              I, James Osborne, have been instructed by you or your litigation friend (usually a parent), through your solicitor or agent, or via the Bar Pro Bono Unit.

4.              It is necessary for me to process your personal data in order for me to provide you with legal services, for example:

·   Advise on the prospects of litigation;

·   Advise on the value of your claim;

·   Representation at a court hearing;

·   Representation at trial;

·   Advise, review or comment on legal issues or evidence.

5.              Processing means anything done to data such as: recording, organising, adapting, altering, copying, consulting, transmitting, combining, erasing or storing it.

6.              The processing for the purposes listed above will take place in accordance with either Article 6(1)(a) GDPR or Article 6(1)(b) GDPR, depending on how you instructed me.

7.              If you have instructed me on a direct access basis, or engaged a solicitor (or legal agent), to assist you in bringing or defending a claim then the processing is necessary to perform a contract to which you are a party (Article 6(1)(b) GDPR). To give effect to that contract (i.e. to bring a claim) it is necessary for me to process your personal data for litigation purposes.

8.              If I am assisting you on a pro bono basis, it will be necessary for me to seek your consent to be able to represent you (Article 6(1)(a) GDPR). In this scenario, you will be sent a consent form.

Recipients of your data

9.              I may also be required to share your data with others, depending on the nature of your case. This may include:

(i)                  Courts and other tribunals to whom documents are presented;

(ii)                Your solicitors, or agent representing you, through whom I have been instructed;

(iii)               Potential witnesses, experts and other persons involved in the case;

(iv)               Solicitors, barristers, or other legal representatives;

(v)                Ombudsman and regulatory authorities;

(vi)               Education and examining bodies; and

(vii)             Current, past or prospective employers.

Special Categories of Data

10.          In some cases I will have been given your personal data that is within the ‘special categories’ of data described in GDPR Article 9(1). For example, personal data that reveals your race, ethnicity, sexual preferences, political or religious beliefs, trade union membership or health. There are also restrictions for processing information regarding criminal convictions.

11.          This type of personal data will only be processed where it is necessary in order to represent you in your legal claim, or advise on the prospects of a legal claim.


12.          I will retain your personal data for no longer than is necessary, and where it is possible, I will anonymise your data.

13.          How long your personal data is kept will depend on a number of factors. The retention period will be reviewed when the service I am providing you with is complete. However in general, I am obliged by the Bar Code of Conduct to retain records of my cases, and by HM Revenue and Customs to retain records for 6 years.

14.          Once your case has concluded and fees have been paid, I shall retain only the personal data necessary for the following purposes:

(i)                  The legal and professional obligation to retain information relating to my cases;

(ii)                To check for any potential conflict of interests that may arise in the future when I am instructed on other cases;

(iii)               For use in the defence of potential complaints, legal proceedings or fee disputes;

(iv)               To refer back to in future cases which raise similar legal, factual, or procedural issues.

15.          The processing for the purposes listed in paragraph 14 (ii), (iii), and (iv) above, will take place in accordance with Article 6(1)(f) GDPR. That is, for the purposes of legitimate interests that are not outweighed by your interests or fundamental rights and freedoms.

16.          The processing for the purposes listed in paragraph 14(i) above, will take place in accordance with Article 6(1)(c) GDPR. That is, the processing is necessary for me to comply with a legal obligation. 

Your Rights

17.          Where processing of your personal data was based on your consent (see paragraphs 6 and 8) you have the right to withdraw that consent at any time. This does not affect the lawfulness of the processing based on consent before its withdrawal.

18.          Withdrawal of your consent to process such data will most likely mean that I am no longer able to provide you with the legal services you seek.

19.          You may request confirmation that your personal data is being processed by me and details about the personal data, the source, the processing, the purposes of the processing, the recipients and the retention period.

20.          You may request a copy of your personal data that is being processed by me. You may also request rectification (i.e. correction) where there are inaccuracies in the personal data.

21.          You have the right to object, on grounds relating to your particular situation, at any time, to processing of your personal data in paragraph 14 of this privacy notice. Should you object, the processing will only continue where there are compelling legitimate grounds for the processing which override your fundamental rights, freedoms and interests. 

22.          Where the processing or retention of your data is necessary for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims, it will not be possible to object. 

23.          You have the right to request that your personal data is erased where any of the following apply:

(i)                  The personal data are no longer necessary in relation to the purposes for which they were collected or otherwise processed;

(ii)                You withdraw your consent where the basis of processing was based on consent and where there is no other ground for the processing;

(iii)               Where your fundamental rights, freedoms and interests override the legitimate interests of processing in paragraph 14;

(iv)               The personal data has been unlawfully processed; or

(v)                The personal data have to be erased to comply with a legal obligation.

24.          You have the right to request that your personal data is restricted from processing, so that it is simply stored, for the following reasons: as an alternative to deletion; so that it can be corrected; for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims; to verify if a legitimate ground exists (paragraph 14).

25.          Where it is necessary to correct your personal data, or you have requested the restriction or erasure of your personal data, I shall endeavour to contact the recipients of the personal data, unless this involves disproportionate effort. 


26.          I take appropriate physical and technical procedures to safeguard your personal data to prevent it from being accidentally lost, used or accessed in an unauthorised way. The I.T. systems used by Clerksroom are ISO27001 compliant.

Complaints or Queries

27.          If you have any questions regarding this privacy notice, or how I use your personal data please email me: [email protected], or my clerks: mail@clerksroom telephone 01823 247 247.

28.          I shall aim to respond as soon as possible, and within 30 days.

29.          You have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) if you believe I have not handled your request in an appropriate manner. For information on contacting the ICO please go to:



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