Thomas Jones joined Deka Chambers as a pupil and continues to practise in the full range of Chambers’ work. He has a broad common law practice and has experience in civil litigation, public law, health and social care, mental capacity, family law, inquests and inquiries.

Tom has been instructed in some of the leading cases in his fields of expertise including A Health Board v AZ (Termination of Childhood Pregnancy) [2023] EWHC 2517 (Fam) and Re G (Disclosure of Fact-Finding to the Secretary of State for the Home Department) [2023] EWHC 450 (Fam). He is currently instructed by ‘Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice’ in the national Covid inquiry.

He is ranked as a ‘leading junior’ in the Legal 500 where he is described as being ‘extremely bright, hard-working, personable and practical in his approach to cases’ (Legal 500, 2024). He is ranked in the ‘up and coming’ category in Chambers and Partners who note that ‘he is brilliant in terms of his preparation, he is on top of all issues’ (Chambers UK, 2024).

Tom is a member of the Attorney General’s Civil Panel of Counsel (C Panel) and is frequently instructed by Government departments in his core practice areas. He has represented and advised the Ministry of Justice, the Department for Health and Social Care and the Department for Work and Pensions.

Prior to joining Chambers, Tom worked as a stagiaire at the European Court of Justice and as a research assistant at the Law Commission of England and Wales. Outside of work, he is learning Welsh and is a Trustee of a social mobility charity. He is a member of the Bar Council Remuneration Committee and is an active member of Gray’s Inn.

Tom represents claimants and defendants in the full range of clinical negligence and personal injury claims. He is regularly instructed to attend costs and case management conferences, interim applications and trials in fast track and multi-track cases. Tom’s clinical negligence practice includes cases involving the overdose of medication, failures or delays in diagnosis, negligent surgery and the breakdown of mental health provision.

Tom has considerable experience of claims brought against public bodies in negligence and under the Human Rights Act 1998. His case load involves claims arising from alleged mistreatment in prisons, claims for false imprisonment and claims against local authorities for failures in children and adult social services functions.

Notable Civil Liability cases

  • HXA v Surrey County Council; YXA v Wolverhampton County Council [2023] UKSC 52

    Tom was instructed for the local authorities in this Supreme Court appeal concerning the question of whether local authorities assume responsibility to protect children from harm through their conduct and therefore owe them a duty of care at common-law. Tom was led by Lord Faulks KC and Paul Stagg. The case gives guidance as to whether claims can be brought against local authorities in negligence for failing to take children into care.

  • PD v. Ministry of Justice [2023]

    Tom successfully acted for the Defendant in this prisoner assault claim. The claim was struck out and the court disapplied QOCS pursuant to CPR 44.15, entitling the Defendant to its costs.

  • Y v. NHS body [2022]

    Tom acted for an elderly patient who lacked litigation capacity who was given an overdose of her medication at hospital which led to nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea. The claim settled prior to trial and Tom represented the Claimant at the approval hearing.

Tom has a busy practice in the Court of Protection where he is instructed on behalf of health bodies, local authorities, patients (through their litigation friends) and family members. He has experience in both personal welfare and property and affairs jurisdictions. He has appeared in disputes relating to serious medical treatment, residence, care and contact.

Prior to joining Chambers, Tom worked for the Law Commission on its review into the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards. In 2019, he was seconded to the Welsh Government where he advised on the implementation of Mental Capacity (Amendment) Act 2019 in Wales.

Alongside his practice, Tom is a lecturer at Cardiff University where he teaches students on the LLM in Legal Aspects of Medical Practice. He teaches the legal frameworks governing consent to medical treatment under the Mental Capacity Act 2005, the Mental Health Act 1983 and the Children Act 1989.

Notable Court of Protection cases

  • A Health Board v AZ and Ors (Termination of Childhood Pregnancy: Guidance) [2023] EWHC 2517

    Tom represented the applicant health board in this serious medical treatment case. The health board was successful in seeking declarations that it would be in the best interests of an 11-year-old girl to undergo a termination of pregnancy and for tissue to be taken from the placenta to be used for the purposes of forensic testing in a criminal investigation. Mrs Justice Arbuthnot set out guidance for future applications involving serious medical treatment decisions involving children in these circumstances, endorsed by the President of the Family Division.

  • Re CL [2024]

    Tom represented the health board in a 7-day fact-finding hearing in which the local authority sought to establish facts which were necessary to determine the best interests of a vulnerable adult with a learning disability. Tom cross-examined 17 witnesses, including a consultant psychiatrist. Tom attended the pre-trial review and subsequent directions hearings.

  • Re PH [2022]

    Tom represented the health board in a challenge to a patient’s deprivation of liberty at hospital. The decisions for the Court of Protection involved questions of medical ethics in reducing his diet plan at hospital. The patient objected to the change to his diet as an infringement of his right to a private life. The health board maintained that the interference was proportionate and justified.

Tom practises in all aspects of family law including public children, private children and family finance. He has appeared in cases of neglect, substance misuse, non-accidental injury and cases involving the deprivation of liberty of children. In his first year of practice, he was nominated for the Association of Lawyers for Children’s ‘outstanding newcomer’ award and, in his second year, he was shortlisted for the Family Law Awards Young Barrister of the Year.

Notable Family Law cases

  • Re G (Disclosure of Fact-Finding to the Secretary of State for the Home Department) [2023] EWHC 450 (Fam)

    Tom was instructed by the Secretary of State for the Home Department in child abduction proceedings brought under the inherent jurisdiction of the High Court. The case sets out guidance for the disclosure of material within confidential family proceedings to the Secretary of State where there are parallel asylum proceedings.

  • Re R [2023]

    Tom was instructed as junior counsel for the children through their Children’s Guardian, led by Oliver Millington, in this fact-finding hearing. The subject child suffered fractures and multiple lesions to his body. The case involved consideration of expert evidence from a consultant paediatrician and a paediatric radiologist.

  • A Local Authority v. A Mother and A Child [2020] EWHC 2395 (Fam)

    Tom was instructed by a local authority to seek an order under the inherent jurisdiction of the High Court in this deprivation of liberty application. The case sets out the correct approach to authorising a deprivation of liberty under the inherent jurisdiction where one of the relevant criteria under section 25 Children Act 1989 is not satisfied and where the placement is unregulated.

Tom is instructed in a range of administrative and public law matters for government departments, local authorities, health bodies, the police and private individuals. He has particular experience in community care, prison law, mental health and healthcare.

Tom is frequently instructed to advise and represent clients in ordinary residence disputes under the Care Act 2014, claims arising out of failures or delays in unlawful deprivations of liberty and claims against local authorities for psychological harm arising from failures in social services functions.

Notable Public Sector & Human Rights cases

  • R (Cain) v. Secretary of State for Justice [2024] EWHC 426 (Admin)

    Tom was instructed by the Secretary of State for Justice in this claim for judicial review. The Claimant, a life sentence prisoner, sought to challenge the decision of the SSJ not to follow the recommendation of the Parole Board that he be transferred to open prison conditions. The court agreed with the SSJ’s submissions that the Defendant had been entitled to reach a different conclusion following his evaluation of the material which was before the Parole Board and the claim for judicial review failed.

  • AA [2023]

    Tom was instructed for the patient in this Mental Health Tribunal case at the Cygnet Psychiatric Hospital reviewing the legality of the patient’s mental health detention.

Tom is regularly instructed to attend inquests on behalf of government departments, local authorities, health bodies, the police and private individuals in inquests. He has experience in healthcare cases, cases involving mental health provision, cases involving article 2 and jury inquests. He has experience of assisting as part of a wider counsel team on inquiries and experience of representing clients in litigation arising out of inquests and inquiries.

Notable Inquests & Inquiries cases

  • Covid-19 Inquiry [ongoing]

    Tom is currently instructed by ‘Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice’ in the national Covid-19 inquiry. He is particularly concerned with the numerous families within the group from Wales and has advised the group on a range of healthcare issues relating to the devolution arrangements in Wales.

  • Inquest into the death of Jared Perry [2024]

    Tom represented a health board in a two-week jury inquest into the death of a prisoner with mental health problems who died in his cell during the course his sentence. The inquest considered the processes for transferring prisoners to a secure hospital under section 47 of the Mental Health Act 1983. No regulation 28 report was made.

Tom prosecutes and defends in criminal cases and appeals in the Crown Court. He has experience of representing police forces in applications for account freezing orders, cash forfeiture, forced marriage prevention orders and public interest immunity applications.

Tom is a member of the following panels:

  • CPS General Crime, Level 2
  • CPS Extradition Panel, Level 1
  • The Regulatory Panel of Prosecuting Advocates, C Panel.

Notable Crime, Police and Regulatory cases

  • R (HSE) v. Network Rail [2023]

    Tom represented the Health and Safety Executive in its prosecution of Network Rail following the death of one of its employees when cleaning a welding machine. A HSE investigation found that Network Rail had failed to ensure there was a safe system of work while carrying out maintenance on its rail production line. Network Rail was fined £1.2 million. More information is available here.

  • R v Ings [2024]

    Tom prosecuted in this case involving four counts of assault emergency worker and two counts of racially aggravated harassment.

Endorsements

“Thomas is extremely bright, hard-working, personable and practical in his approach to cases. He is well ahead of his year of call.”

Legal 500 2024

“Thomas is brilliant in terms of his preparation, he is on top of all issues. He is able to cut through the nonsense.”

Chambers & Partners 2024

“Thomas' oral advocacy is very good, he is persuasive and charming. His written documentation is excellent too. He is going from strength to strength.”

Chambers & Partners 2023

“Thomas shows real attention to detail and grapples with cases quickly. He is conscientious and pulls off a firm but fair approach with other parties when in pre-hearing discussions.”

Legal 500 2023

“He is very hard-working and conscientious, with a calm, mature and considered approach that is highly effective in Court of Protection welfare cases.”

Legal 500 2022

“Very knowledgeable in the deprivation of liberty safeguards.”

Legal 500 2021

Regulated by the Bar Standards Board (BSB)

Regulated by the Bar Standards Board (BSB) and holds a current practising certificate.

Regulated by the Bar Standards Board (BSB)

Regulated by the Bar Standards Board (BSB) and holds a current practising certificate.

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Deka Chambers: 5 Norwich Street, London EC4A 1DR

© Deka Chambers 2024

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