Peter Barnes > DWF > Bristol, England > Lawyer Profile

Peter Barnes photo

Work Department

Peter is a Partner who specialises in resolving disputes nationally and internationally.





Peter is a Partner and is based in London and Bristol. Peter’s areas of specialty include Insurance/Reinsurance, Aviation, Product Liability, Product Recalls, EL/PL and Property Litigation for Lloyds, the Companies Market and international insurers. The disputes he handles typically involve coverage arguments and he has particular expertise in technical matters. His work spans jurisdictions.

Peter’s clients praise him for his understanding of complex technical issues, his common sense approach to disputes, and his pragmatic and effective solutions to commercial requirements.

Product Liabilty

Peter handles complex technical product liability claims which typically fall into the areas of motor, engineering, aviation, life sciences, medical devices and construction. He has handled these claims both within the UK and internationally and has led mediations in South Africa and Australia. Peter is the point of contact for a number of blue chip companies, including well known Swedish, American and Japanese manufacturers, as well as representing Lloyd’s and international insurers. Peter is also the first point of contact for a major truck and bus manufacturer (in Europe and the UK) in the event that there is a claim in respect of one of their products. Peter continues to develop his medical device practice with instructions increasing from the United States and he continues to build on his work defending well known motor and other manufacturers from Japan’s largest insurer.


In the aviation arena, Peter handles high profile aviation liability disputes which arise out of fatal or near miss air accidents. He is also regularly instructed in relation contractual and coverage disputes and dealing with aviation product liability issues – often with cross jurisdictional elements. Peter has most recently been involved in coverage disputes in Europe, fatal accidents involving high profile historic aircraft, fatal accidents involving multiple aircraft, and contractual disputes arising from hangarage and maintenance obligations.


Peter acts for insurers and reinsurers handling complex casualty and property coverage claims.


Peter is regularly instructed in respect of high value property claims arising from catastrophic flooding or fire damage in some of the world’s most historic and valued buildings. Recent instructions include advising in respect of the fire at Glasgow School of Art, the Mandarin Oriental in London, the Glasgow Fruit Market and Nira Caledonia Hotel in Edinburgh.


Called to the Bar 1999


Skydiving and Wingsuiting

Lawyer Rankings

London > Insurance > Product liability: defendant

The product liability team at DWF is frequently instructed by major global insurers, with a strong international presence and expertise in the manufacturing, construction, life sciences, aviation and agriculture sectors. Peter Barnes specialises in handling high value and technical product liability claims within the fields of aviation, engineering and construction. He leads with product compliance expert Dominic Watkins and Hilary Ross , noted for her experience in the food industry.

London > Insurance > Insurance and reinsurance litigation

DWF has been particularly busy in respect of COVID-related instructions at direct insurance and reinsurance levels, acting for both London market and international carriers, in addition to its expanding workload in product liability, property and Bermuda form. Described as a ‘pioneer in the classes he specialises in’, David Abbott is known for his political risk, trade credit and reinsurance work. For property and product liability, senior partner John Groome , Peter Barnes (particularly for Japanese and Far East markets) and Charlotte Kelly are also noted. Jonathan Moss and Antony Woodhouse also come recommended.