Michael Rawlinson QC
36 Young Street, Manchester, M3 3FT
DX: 718188 MCH 3
Direct Dial: 0161 832 9082
5 Park Square, Leeds, LS1 2NE
DX: 713113 LEEDS PARK SQ
Direct Dial: 0113 242 1123
Embassy House, 60 Church Street,
Birmingham, B3 2DJ
DX: 13023 BIRMINGHAM
Direct Dial: 0121 200 3570
Clerked by:Stephen Loxton
Michael has been involved in a number of GLOs in the past including both Coal Mining Schemes, the ‘Toxic Sofas’ litigation. More recently he has been instructed by a number of insurers in combination to seek contribution to their asbestos-related outlay arising under Employers’ liability policies, against the historical manufacturer of asbestos boards.
Significant Reported Cases
Fairchild v Glenhaven Funeral Services Ltd  1 WLR 1052 (HL) (also for academic commentary see (2003) MLR (66(2), 277-284
Grieves v FT Everard & Sons Ltd  1 A.C. 281 (HL) (2009) MLR 72(6) (The Pleural Plaque test litigation)
Rice & Thompson v Sec. State For Trade & Industry  I.C.R. 1469 (CA) then remitted back to the High Court and further reported at  EWHC 3216 (QB) (Academic comment (2007) JPI Law 3, C150-152)
Carter v Freeman Group plc  EWHC 3576 (QB) & Bateman & Danks Holdings  EWHC 2082 (QB); Preston v Hurst  EWHC 870 (QB)
Series of appeals in respect of mesothelioma. Carter is still cited in the White Book (Part 24)
Cox v Transco  EWCA Civ 127
Michael’s main area of practice arises from claims where historic exposure to any bodily insult is argued to have led to late onset sequelae. Predominantly this arises in respect of asbestos exposure leading to the contraction of cancer but there are few toxic agents which he has not encountered in litigation. Michael is regularly instructed in litigation aimed at resolving ‘generic’ issues, the value of which stretches across very large numbers of cases with combined values exceeding beyond £100m (and in the case of Plaques and Fairchild running into £Billions). As a concomitant to his ‘long-tail’ work Michael has experience in product liability claims. In addition to this work, he also specialises in military claims and catastrophic injury however caused. Michael has had the good fortune to be instructed in litigation which has required him to work with counterparts throughout the Commonwealth and the US. Michael thoroughly enjoys seeking to develop new areas of personal injury litigation and points within already-established areas. He is, at present, instructed by two families who claim the deaths of their respective relatives were caused by those relatives being exposed, whilst working as aircrew, to contaminated recycled air within commercial aircraft.
Chambers UK 2017: "A very well-prepared and hard-working advocate who gives practical and clear advice to clients." "He's like a legal encyclopaedia; his knowledge of case law is incredible." "He provides useful analysis which brings a unique perspective. He's the standout silk for a difficult case against the MOD."
Legal 500 2017: ‘One of the leading authorities on asbestos litigation, who is tenacious and committed.’
Chambers UK 2016: "He always displays an encyclopaedic knowledge of his subject matter and excellent client care." "An exceptional legal mind; his advice is always thoroughly thought out." "On his feet he is a terrier."
Chambers UK 2015: "No one has a better knowledge of asbestos disease litigation over the last 30 years." "He is uncompromising, and thrives on difficult cases."
Legal 500 2015: "A leading light in the world of disease litigation"
Chambers UK 2014: Michael Rawlinson QC is "very bright and personable, with an enquiring mind. He should be the first phone call when something novel crops up." "He's excellent - he has lots of experience in the mesothelioma area. He's simply superb."
Legal 500 2014: "He has an instant and encyclopaedic recall for case law".
Chambers UK 2013: Michael Rawlinson QC is "a very reliable and effective advocate" whose practice "is well balanced between claimant and defendant work." His caseload encompasses a broad range of personal injury claims, and he is especially highly regarded for his expertise in spinal injury and brain injury matters. He also has extensive experience of handling industrial disease claims."
Legal 500 2012: Michael Rawlinson QC is "recommended for spinal and brain injury cases".
Chambers UK 2012: "The immensely talented, well-prepared and persuasive "Michael Rawlinson QC "never shies away from tough and complex cases."
Legal 500 2011: "one of the few counsel who is really willing to fight very difficult cases"
Chambers UK 2011: Michael Rawlinson QC has a national reputation on industrial disease matters, especially asbestos-related claims, and also handles a wide variety of other personal injury cases. Instructing solicitors appreciate that he "cuts through all of the issues to get to the main point," is "exceptionally fluent" and "has an encyclopaedic mind as far as case law is concerned."
Legal 500 2010: "has rapidly established his silk practice in high-value disease and injury claims...a standout practitioner in a strong group"
Chambers UK 2010: Michael Rawlinson QC of Kings Chambers wins plaudits for his specialist knowledge of occupational disease cases, especially those involving exposure to asbestos. Interviewees note that "he is always well prepared, extremely thorough in his analysis and a pleasure to work with." He is widely felt to have a "peerless understanding of his area of specialisation."
Chambers UK 2009: "Incredibly good on his feet and intellectually great," Kings Chambers' Michael Rawlinson has a strong background in industrial disease and has undertaken work for and against the Ministry of Defence.
Legal 500 2008: "has been acting for the majority of the airmen's families in the high-profile Nimrod Crash Inquest "
Legal 500 2007: "Michael Rawlinson is acting in the headline Pleural Plaques Test Litigation which has now reached the House of Lords"
Chambers & Partners 2007: ("Michael Rawlinson at Kings Chambers is another new addition. Widely thought of as a "truly brilliant barrister," he is commended for his "client-friendly manner and first-rate advice.")
Northern Circuit Medical Law Association, PIBA, Northern and North Eastern Circuits
LLB (2:1) (Harry Street Tort Prize, Lawson Prize and Dauntsey
Degree: Inner Temple (Major scholarship)
Panels: Junior Counsel to the Crown (Provincial Panel) (2003 - 2007; 2007 - 2009