Deborah Tompkinson

Barrister | Mediator
Year of Call: 1984

About Deborah


A senior civil barrister (1984 call), Deborah worked, after pupillage, as claims manager for a Lloyd’s Syndicate; in-house counsel for a run-off company; and for many years as a solicitor specializing in insurance and re-insurance disputes, while acquiring an LLM in Commercial Law and ACII (Associateship of Chartered Insurance Institute). She returned to the Bar in 2000.

Deborah has a real passion for advocacy and relishes both original and difficult arguments. Clients appreciate her attention to detail, thorough preparation, and team approach.

She has a down to earth approach, speaks plainly, and looks for pragmatic solutions. A former purchaser of legal services, she understands the demands driving business decisions and the disruption of human and financial resources entailed in litigation.

She is a qualified mediator.

Whilst Deborah accepts instructions for most areas of common law, her interests lie with the following key areas:
• Costs. She regularly attends Detailed Assessments in the SCCO and across the country. She also has a reputation for fighting hard at CCMCs, and appreciates that the approved costs budget can be vital to the future of a case.
• Insurance and Reinsurance, including assisitng with Ombudsman references
• Personal Injury (including RTA, EL and PL) and Clinical Negligence. She represents Claimants and Defendants.
• Contract disputes (including Agency and Consumer Contracts)
• Fraud – Deborah has written the sections on Part 18 Questions and Witness Statements for the Chambers Fraud Manual
• Tort disputes, Negligence

Recent work includes:

• Product Liability claims arising out of withdrawn orthopaedic hips.
• Non-party costs application against credit hire company
• Issues arising out of Part 36 offers on the Fixed Costs Regime
• A series of cases where guarantees were alleged to have been forged.
• Extent of recoverabilty of ATE premiums
• A case of an alleged contract reached by text messages
• Cases involving vulnerable and potentially vulnerable adult witnesses in respect of whom the court might need to make adjustments in order to ensure best evidence was obtained, and assisting instructing solicitors and court to that end.
• A Critical Illness Insurance policy where the insurer refused to accept the insured was disabled
• A Permanent Total Disablement Insurance policy where the dispute was whether the accident disabled the insured from doing any work, including housework.
• Advice on issues arising from Ombudsman’s references.

Deborah has a real passion for advocacy and enjoys an original argument. She is an advocacy trainer for the Middle Temple. Professional Memberships include: PIBA, PNBA, LCLBA, AvMA, Chartered Insurance Institute and Civil Mediation Council. She travels widely and is happy attending any court centre, subject to professional commitments.

On a personal note, Deborah is married and divides her time between the City of London & Berkshire. She enjoys theatre, opera, skiing, role-playing and setting a bad example to her god-children. Deborah is confident, has a wealth of experience and always happy to discuss potential new instructions.