James Bentley > Chambers of Anna Vigars KC > Bristol, England > Lawyer Profile

Chambers of Anna Vigars KC
Guildhall Chambers

Work Department

Personal Injury, Clinical Negligence, Costs & Litigation Funding


James Bentley is recognised as a leading junior on circuit for both personal injury and costs. He appears for Claimants and Defendants in broadly equal measure, with most of his caseload being in the multi-track. He also has a well-established and varied clinical negligence practice, receiving instructions on behalf of both Claimants and Defendants.


Personal injury work forms the majority of James’s practice.

He represents both Claimants and Defendants across the full range of liability and quantum issues, and his expertise is consistently recognised by both legal directories.

In addition to ‘standard’ RTA, EL and PL claims, James has extensive experience in more complex claims, the majority of which have been valued in excess of £100,000, and which occasionally run into seven figures. These include:

  • Brain injury claims;
  • Fraud and exaggerated claims;
  • Animals Act claims;
  • Accidents abroad/claims with a foreign law element;
  • Fatal Accidents Act claims;
  • Pain disorders, including: CRPS, Somatoform disorders, Chronic Pain and Fibromyalgia;
  •  Secondary victim/complex psychiatric claims;
  • Complex loss of earnings claims.

As a result of having a well-established costs practice, James also has particular experience where difficult costs issues arise during the case, and clients have often appreciated his ability to give well-informed and commercial advice as a result.

James has built a successful clinical negligence practice. His expertise has resulted in him being selected to co-author the Clinical Negligence chapter of Butterworths Personal Injury Litigation Service Manual.

Examples of recent work include cases involving:

  • General practice and inappropriate advice;
  • Hepato-biliary failures;
  • Nursing – including pressure sore cases of the utmost severity;
  • Vascular surgery;
  • Cardiology;
  • Orthopaedic negligence (including spinal surgery leading to neurological complications);
  • Delayed cancer diagnoses and inappropriate monitoring;
  • Dental negligence;
  • Radiological negligence;
  • Consent

James’s clinical negligence work involves high 5 and 6 figure claims where at least 3 or more experts have been instructed for each side. He has also been instructed as a junior and second junior in 7 and 8 figure cases involving injuries at birth.

His work includes appearing at inquests where there are some prospects of success.


  • PIBA
  • AvMA


  • BPTC, Kaplan Law School
  • LLM, University College London
  • LLB Hons, University of Exeter
  • Hardwicke Entrance Award, Lincoln’s Inn
  • Sir Thomas More Award, Lincoln’s Inn
  • Walter Wigglesworth Scholarship, Lincoln’s Inn
  • Kaplan Law School Advocacy Scholarship

Lawyer Rankings

Regional Bar > Western Circuit > Costs

(Leading Juniors)Ranked: Tier 2

James BentleyGuildhall ChambersJames is a thorough advocate, whose delivery is calm and effective. He gives realistic advice on cases.’

Guildhall Chambers stands out on the Western circuit for its ‘dedicated costs team‘. Led by the ‘very approachableOliver Moore , the group has an established track record in handling costs appeals, enforceability of funding arrangements, professional negligence work pertaining to costs issues, and advising on assessments of costs involving issues of principle and of high value. James Wibberley is a key contact for advising on issues related to wasted costs and non-party costs applications. James Bentley has ‘a wealth of expertise‘ in assisting with costs matters arising from clinical negligence and personal injury cases.

Regional Bar > Western Circuit > Personal injury

(Leading Juniors)Ranked: Tier 3

James BentleyGuildhall ChambersJames is extremely knowledgeable, experienced and thorough – he is a very safe pair of hands. His advice is thorough, well thought out and easy to understand.’