Karen Rea

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The Clinical Negligence work that Karen has undertaken encompassed all areas of malpractice within the medical/nursing and other paramedical disciplines (see reported cases below). This included cerebral palsy cases and adult brain damage cases. as well as neurology, orthopaedic, ophthalmology, gynaecology, paediatrics, general surgery, dentistry and General Practice cases.

Karen has acted in all the fori, including The House of Lords, The Court of Appeal, The High Court, The Crown Court, The County Court and the Coroner’s Court and in the first 10 years of Call, when she also practised in Crime, Immigration and Employment Law, appearing in the Industrial Tribunal, The Immigration Tribunal, The Employment Appeal Tribunal and, in the very early days, The Magistrates Courts.

Karen now specialises only in Regulatory Law, where her extensive experience as a Legal Assessor/Adviser and as a Chair, includes both the healthcare and financial sectors, as seen below.

Judicial appointments and dates of appointment:

  • 1999 – present day – Deputy District Judge
  • 2002 – 2008  – Family Health Services Appeal Authority (FHSAA) – Legal Chair
  • 2008 – present day – PHL/Health, Education and Social Care Fee paid Tribunal Judge
  • 2002 – 2005  – GMC – Legal Assessor
  • 2003 – present day – Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) – Legal Assessor
  • 2004 – 2008 – Mediator in Time Limited Small Claim and Fast Track cases
  • 2005 – 2009 – Legal Assessor to The General Social Care Council (England)
  • 2005 – present day – Legal Adviser to the General Dental Council (GDC)
  • 2006 – present day – Legal Assessor to the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC)
  • 2006 – 2014  Legal Assessor to the Council for Licensed Conveyancers (CLC)
  • 2006  – 2012 – Legal Assessor to The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)
  • 2006 – 2015 – Mediator/Arbitrator to Sports Resolution
  • 2006 – present day Legal Assessor to the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA)
  • 2006 – 2013 – Legal Chair to the FHSAA Pharmacy Appeals
  • 2006 – 2013 – Legal Chair to the FHSAU Pharmacy Location Appeals
  • 2007 –  present day – Legal Chair to the Doctors and Dentists Appeal Panel (DDAP)
  • 2008  –  2017 – Assistant Coroner for Plymouth and South Devon
  • 2009 – 2011 – Chair of the Investigating Committee of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society
  • 2010 – 2011 – Vice Chair of the Appeals Committee of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)
  • 2011 –  2016 – Chair – CIMA
  • 2016 – 2017 – Lay Panel Member Appeals’ Committee – CIMA

Notable cases

  • Pereira v Keleman [1995] 1 FLR 428
  • Donoghue v Blundell [1985] Current Law Year Book 1986 Para 2254
  • Brown v Guy’s & Lewisham NHS Trust [1996] 8 Med LR 132
  • Skelton v Lewisham & North Southwark Health Authority & anr [1997] Lloyds Rep Med 324
  • D. Brown v Lewisham & North Southwark Health Authority [1997] Lloyds Rep Med 265; [1999] Lloyds Rep Med 110, C.A.

“has an excellent knowledge of medicine and the law – highly recommended” – Legal 500 (2009)

"is excellent on complex medical issues" - Legal 500


• Chapter entitled “Negligence and the Obstetric Anaesthetist” in book “Obstetric Anaesthesia”, published by Balliere Tindal - 1995.
• Many articles for Nursing Times, Pulse, the RCN’s Nursing Standard and other associated healthcare and legal journals. - from 1980.
• Radio legal and welfare advice- Radio Essex, Radio 4 (You and Yours) and BBC Radio Devon.

Former Career:

Registered Nurse (1976 - SRN - St Thomas’ Hospital, London)

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Latest News

  • Clinical Negligence - 16, August
    consent and risks

    Informed Consent: Risks and Choices

    Alternative Text
    Posted by Joanna Lewis

    Breach of duty was established and causation followed when the Claimant did not give informed consent to an operation that left her tetraplegic. This case explores the implications of Montgomery v Lanarkshire Health Board [2015] UKSC 11 and the duty on doctors to ‘take reasonable care to ensure that the patient is aware of any … Continue reading Informed Consent: Risks and Choices

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  • Clinical Negligence - 16, August

    When is it appropriate to resort to the ‘Burden of Proof’?

    Alternative Text
    Posted by Lauren Seager

    Yip J had to turn her mind to the question of burden of proof in the case of Saunders -v- Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust [2018] EWHC 343 (QB). The claimant brought a clinical negligence claim alleging there had been a failure to reverse an ileostomy during surgery resulting in his colon becoming … Continue reading When is it appropriate to resort to the ‘Burden of Proof’?

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  • Clinical Negligence - 10, April
    red limitation

    Section 33 order disapplying limitation in clinical negligence case overturned

    Alternative Text
    Posted by Anna Johns

    In The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust v De Meza [2017] EWCA Civ 1711 the Court of Appeal considered the relevant factors to be taken into account on an application under section 33 of the Limitation Act 1980. Background facts Mr De Meza brought a claim in 2014 against the NHS Trust (the first defendant) … Continue reading Section 33 order disapplying limitation in clinical negligence case overturned

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