Jim Tindal Court of Protection & Social Care

Call: 2002

Introduction

Jim is a former Solicitor and has now been at the Bar for 11 years. He has developed an expertise in what might be described as ‘social and public law’, dealing with a number of related and overlapping fields including: Personal Inury and Clinical Negligence, Employment and Discrimination, and Court of Protection and Social Care work. He has an entry in Chambers and Partners and Legal 500 for  Employment and in Chambers and Partners for Civil Liberties and Human Rights.

Jim is also a Recorder of the County and Crown Courts, Deputy District Judge of the Magistrates Court and Part-Time Employment Judge. He is one of the youngest people in the country to have achieved these multiple judicial positions (now 39). He is also a Visiting Lecturer in Law at Birmingham University.

Qualifications and Appointments:

  • Treasury Counsel (Civil) since 2007
  • Part-Time Employment Judge since 2009
  • Deputy District Judge (Magistrates Court) since 2009
  • Crown Court Recorder since 2012

Articles and Publications:

  • Thomson Encyclopedia of Employment Law

 


Health & Welfare

Jim has wide experience in cases involving mental health, special educational needs, disability discrimination, psychiatric injury, human rights and public law work in Tribunals and the Civil and Administrative Courts, and professional regulatory bodies such as the General Social Care Council and Nursing and Midwifery Council. This all enables him to consider a case from several different angles. He organised and spoke at the 2013 St Philips Court of Protection and Social Care Seminar and also heads up the 'Abuse, Neglect and Human Rights' Injury sub-team.

Under the category of Civil Liberties and Human Rights in Chambers and Partners, Jim is described as "A very good lawyer, an extremely sensible and effective advocate".

On the Health and Welfare side, Jim has been instructed by local authorities and families in Court of Protection cases concerning issues of capacity, residence and the interface with and social care duties, contact, deprivation of liberty (‘DOLS’), Forced Marriages and Capacity to Marry. Cases have concerned elderly and ailing people and contact with family members, DOLS authorisations for adults at risk of injury or death through wandering from care homes and lack of awareness of risk, and conflict between resident and safeguarding authorities and NHS Trusts.

Jim has also dealt with MHA Nearest Relative applications, and is instructed on a complex appeal to the Upper Tribunal on a refusal to discharge a patient. He has been instructed to advise local authorities on the capacity of and protective measures for vulnerable adults with a history of risky decision-making encompassing action under the MHA, MCA, social care legislation and injunctions; and on capacity in previously sectioned patients, and has dealt with Inquests relating to the death of vulnerable elderly people, including deaths on escape from a care home, and death at home soon after discharge from hospital and local authority support. Jim has also jointly advised local authorities in conflict over responsibility for a vulnerable adult with complex needs and mental health problems.

Jim also has extensive experience in Housing and Homelessness and Judicial Review. He has dealt with numerous homeless appeals (including a complex case involving three overlapping appeals by members of the same family), allocations of public accommodation to disabled people, disrepair and possession claims in private and public housing involving disability, human rights and antisocial behaviour, and Judicial Review claims involving vulnerable asylum seekers and welfare support, and capacity and safety relating to accommodation.

Jim also has considerable experience of Special Educational Needs, and indeed appeared in the Court of Appeal in Owens - the first case to define the word ‘teacher’ which arose in the context of special educational needs. He has appeared for both local authorities and parents in special educational needs cases, including acting for parents facing care proceedings in respect of an autistic child, advising a local authority on exclusion of a child with special educational needs who had sexually abused other children, and judicial review, human rights and educational negligence cases concerning the adequacy of provision of specialised education. Jim has advised and appeared in disability and other discrimination claims in the context of higher education, in prosecutions for non-school attendance and has represented a trainee teacher charged with incompetence at the General Teaching Council.

Jim regularly lectures to local authorities on social care law and vulnerable adults, and to solicitors generally on all aspects of the Court of Protection, including DOLS, medical treatment and best interests, capacity and Court of Protection Practice.

Reported Cases

Owens v Dudley MBC [2012] ICR 453 (Court of Appeal) – First case to define the word ‘teacher’, extending definition to qualified teachers acting as counsellors to children with mental health problems.

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Property & Affairs

On the Property and Affairs side of Court of Protection and Social Care work, Jim has been instructed in cases concerning reimbursement of care home fees, charging for community care and availability of NHS Continuing Care, the lawfulness of charging for ‘top-ups’ in aftercare under s.117 MHA, and availability of welfare benefits for service charges in sheltered accommodation in the Lee test case on Attendance Allowance in the Upper Tribunal. Jim also conducted a multi-million pound PI claim involving brain injury and child abuse in the Criminal Injuries Compensation Tribunal with issues in the Court of Protection relating to undertakings as to the investment of damages, is instructed by a local authority intervening in clinical negligence proceedings involving a child in local authority care with life-long care needs with a Court of Protection Deputy, and has advised on other cases involving PI awards and the Court of Protection, including challenges to local authority care assessments.

Reported Cases:

Lee v Department of Work and Pensions (Upper Tribunal) 2012 – Complex appeal on entitlement to benefits for vulnerable care home residents lacking capacity

Challinor v Staffordshire CC (Court of Appeal) 2011 – Complex case on Abuse of Process, Human Rights and Local Authority liability in negligence.

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