Matthew Kerruish-Jones

Bright, technical and client-focussed. A very safe pair of hands who will always advise practically and in a commercial context. A strong junior, apt for advising commercially on claims in today's progressive insurance world.

Thom Lumley, instructing Solicitor

Matthew Kerruish-Jones

  • Called in 2003

Matthew Kerruish-Jones was called to the Bar in 2003. He is a highly experienced independent barrister who provides expert legal services to his clients. His broad practice covers civil, criminal, chancery and commercial litigation; inquests and inquiries; health and safety; food safety; fatal road traffic; contentious probate; environment; fire; corporate governance (including bribery and corruption); personal injury; and regulatory law.

Whilst Matthew’s broad practice covers predominantly the civil and criminal courts in the UK he frequently advises clients from all over the world. Matthew acts for global companies and organisations, national companies, insurance companies, local authorities, public bodies as well as individual clients.

Matthew provides the following services to clients: legal advice, advocacy at court, legal research and legal drafting as well as representation in alternative forms of dispute resolution such as mediation and joint settlement meetings.

He regularly provides seminars and training to clients on a range of topics. He continues to expand his international interests and has lectured abroad to international clients including in conjunction with UK Trade and Investment business development missions to Russia and Ukraine.

In addition, Matthew has some quasi-judicial experience as he sits as an Appellate Tribunal Chairman for a trade body in London.


Matthew is often instructed to represent the interests of insurers, corporate entities, public bodies, care homes, motorists and other interested persons at inquests Matthew is well versed in the practice and procedures of coronial law. In particular, he represents parties who are at risk of facing criminal prosecutions pending the outcome of an inquest. He is all too aware of the risks faced by individuals and companies alike who find themselves under investigation.

Notable cases include:

Re: Hapuarchchi [2018 at South London Coroner’s Court]
A case involving an Article 2 Inquest involving Lewisham and Greenwich Healthcare NHS Trust and Matthew’s client, CIS Security Limited. The case involved a man who arrived in hospital covered in blood in 2008 in a very agitated state. Security had to be called on numerous occasions and in the end restrained him to such an extent that he was suffocated and suffered cardiac arrest leading to a traumatic brain injury which led to him being hospitalised for 9 years. The Coroner asked if this should be referred to the HSE. In addition, new guidance came into force regarding deprivation of liberty at the time of this case making it especially interesting. The case led to a long-running inquest of over three weeks into the procedures used by the Trust’s Mental Health Unit.

Re: Cuthbertson [2018 at Welshpool Coroner’s Court]
Mathew acted for a property owner at an inquest into a house fire in mid-Wales where six members of the same family died. The cause of the fire was never established. This was an extremely high-profile case attracting attention from all over the world. The case was extremely complex involving forensic anthropologists in order to identify the victims.

News articles for this case

Farrar’s building website article

Daily Record

Shropshire Star

ITV news


BBC News

Daily Mail

Re: GI Construction Ltd [London, 2018]
Matthew represented a construction company in relation to the death of an employee. The deceased had worked for the company for only two days when, he took a pneumatic drill to the base of a concrete column which collapsed on him. Proceedings were issued at the criminal court and the HSE reserved its position. The Coroner found that the death was accidental.

See news articles for this case


SHP Safety & Health Practitioner

Unison Waltham Forest

Morning Star

Re: Marian Reed [2018 at Pontypridd Coroner’s Court]
Matthew represented a care home at an inquest into the death of an elderly lady who was a resident at the home. She had apparently been put to bed by her carers who said that when they had slid her up the bed she had banged her head and that when they had called a nurse, who checked the lady, said she was fine. Shorty thereafter she became very ill and sadly died. A post-mortem revealed she suffered at least 25 fractures to the back of her body within 24 hours before her death. Suspicions were that the deceased had been dropped prior to her death sustaining serious injuries. No firm conclusions as to the circumstances that caused her death could be reached.

Re: Bala Koranga [St Albans, 2018]
Matthew represented a construction company at inquest where a chauffeur, who worked for a family of doctors who were building an extension to their family home, managed to enter the area of the extension and fell down a large hole covered by tarpaulin which had previously been shielded off but which the contractors had removed over the weekend so they could press on with their work the following day. The chauffeur suffered fatal injuries. Following the conclusion of the inquest, the contractor was prosecuted by the HSE

Article on this case

Stone Specialist

Re: Philip Beeton [2018 at Huntingdon Coroner’s Court]
Representing an HGV driver who suffered with coughing syncope causing him to cross the road and collide with an oncoming vehicle causing death. The inquest had originally been stayed until the conclusion of police enquiries and an appeal brought by the family of the deceased to the specialist prosecutor at the CPS.

Health & Safety

Matthew is often instructed by corporate entities and insurers to represent defendant companies and/or directors in health and safety, fire safety, food safety and environmental prosecutions, many of which involve complex technical issues and expert evidence. Many of these cases are heard at the Crown Court and at appeal. In addition, he provides advice on corporate governance issues including bribery and corruption.

Notable court cases include:

HSE v TJ Smith [2018 at Exeter Crown Court; Patrick Harrington QC leading] This case involved a health and safety prosecution involving a fatality where abuse of process was argued. The employer used mobile elevated work platforms to raise up members of staff up to 30 metres high to carry out redecoration works. Two workers were in the process of doing this when the vehicle supporting the elevated work platform collapsed. One worker was thrown clear of the accident while the other was crushed to death. Matthew argued at first instance that his client should not be prosecuted on their own as a fault had been identified in the machine that was deemed repaired by an independent specialist and certified as safe to operate. Just three weeks after the certification the incident occurred. The case went to a two week trial at Exeter Crown Court with Patrick Harrington QC leading Matthew. The family of the deceased pursued a civil claim for which Matthew drafted the pleadings. Andrew Peebles, also of Farrar’s Building acted at the Inquest and at the joint settlement meeting.

Articles on this case

Philip Poynter Construction Safety

Dawlish Newspapers

Construction Enquirer

HSE v Bespoke Bodies [2017 at Liverpool Crown Court] Matthew acted for coach building company after an investigation by the HSE found that it had not properly supervised work at height activity following an accident where an apprentice fell through a roof he was working on and was seriously injured. The HSE also found the company failed to identify the risks associated with working at height and working on fragile surfaces.
The company was charged for breaches of Regulation 3 (1) (a) of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 and Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

Redcar and Cleveland BC v Baketime Ltd [2017 at Middleborough Magistrates] An international biscuit manufacturer who manufactured own brand biscuits for a number of supermarkets, including Aldi, was prosecuted for food hygiene breaches due to a number of rodents found on the premises.


HSE v M Baker Produce Ltd [2017 at Lincoln Magistrates] The Defendant company operated a commercial farm which employed a number of seasonal workers. One of their employees was pulled into a piece of agricultural equipment sustaining injury.

Darlington BC v Aldi Stores Limited and Wilkinson Maintenance Limited [2016 Middleborough Crown Court] Matthew represented a contractor who was contracted by Aldi to carry out building works. During the works, an unsecured smoking shelter was caught by gust of wind injuring an employee. Both Aldi and the contractor were prosecuted for health and safety offences. Matthew co-defended with Richard Matthew QC, who represented Aldi Stores.

HSE v Spa Laminates [2015 a Leeds Magistrates] Injuries were caused by fork lift truck at a manufacturing plant.

HSE v Brims Construction Ltd [2015 at Newcastle Crown Court] Fall on a building site through a void in a roof. The complainant survived with serious injuries.

HSE v Habitat Construction LLP [2014 at Southwark Crown Court] The case involved a fall on a building site. The complainant was paralyzed. It transpired inadequate safety systems were in place

HSE v HIS Energy [2014 at Manchester Crown Court] The Defendant company operated a cavity wall insulation business. One of their employees inadvertently drilled into a chimney flue for a gas boiler. One of the occupants of the premises died as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning.


Matthew regularly advises and defends individuals prosecuted for causing death whilst driving. He has unique experience in this area as he is able to straddle both the criminal and civil court jurisdictions and understands the tactical issues faced by lay clients and their insurers when facing linked criminal and civil prosecutions.

In addition, Matthew has significant prosecution experience over the years, and has acted as disclosure counsel to the Serious Fraud Office as well as having been led in a number of cases by Queen’s Counsel. In addition, Matthew is very experienced in representing clients prosecuted by QC’s and co-defending with them.

Notable cases involving include:

R v Harris [2017 at Blackfriars Crown Court] Represented an elderly man who was not fit to stand trial due to dementia. The case involved “pedal confusion” whereby it was alleged the defendant drove at speed into a shop killing an occupant.

R v Parsons [2017 at Chelmsford Crown Court] Successfully defended an ambulance driver who, whilst responding to an emergency, collided with a pedestrian killing him.

R v Howard [2017 at Chelmsford Crown Court] Successfully defended a mother with her two children who drove into a fatal collision with a motorcyclist riding up a bus lane.

R v Colledge [2016 at Truro Crown Court] The Defendant suffered with a black out at the wheel due to a neurological condition and caused a fatal collision with an oncoming vehicle. Insane automatism was successfully argued.

R v Mitzman [2016 at Harrow Crown Court] Successfully defended a motorist charged with causing death by careless driving who came into collision with two pedestrians crossing a road.

R v Smart [2015 at Canterbury Crown Court] EWCA Crim 1756 Matthew represented a defendant charged with causing serious injury by dangerous driving at first instance. He advised on the appeal against sentence which was successfully reduced by the Court of Appeal (represented by Douglas Day QC).

R v Calnan [2015 at Canterbury Crown Court] Successfully defended a motorist charged with causing death by careless driving who came into collision with an oncoming motorcyclist.

Trusts & Probate

Matthew has a particular interest in contentious probate cases when disputes arise following a death. He is an associate member of the Association of Contentious Trust and Probate Specialists (“ACTAPS”).

He is able to offer advice in the following areas:

  • Challenging wills and the associated procedures.
  • Claims under the Inheritance Provision for Family and Dependants Act 1975.
  • Claims against Personal Representatives.
  • Mental Capacity issues including:
  • Trust disputes generally

Recent cases include:

L v L&M Claim against validity of will and claim under the Inheritance Act on behalf of an elderly widower with capacity issues against the estate of his late wife.

L v L Claim for change of administrator following dispute over distribution of assets and possible fraud.

K v K Claim brought under the Inheritance Provision for Family and Dependants Act 1975 in a claim worth well over £1 million which was settled favourably for the client at a mediation.

L v S Claim against ex-partner and brother of claimant for repayment of loan in relation to monies loaned to purchase a property.

In addition, he represents and advises defendant insurers, corporate entities and individuals on commercial, indemnity and contractual matters in anticipation of or as a result of litigation at trial. He is adept in the successful use of mediation and other forms of alternative dispute resolution.

Personal Injury

Matthew regularly acts for both Claimants and Defendants and carries out work in all areas of the Personal Injury field. He acts for a number of local authorities and public bodies as well as private companies and individuals. He has recent experience of high value cases.

Examples of recent notable cases include:

Cavell v Transport for London [2015] EWHC 2283

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Notable Cases

R v Harris [2017 at Blackfriars Crown Court]
Represented an elderly man who was not fit to stand trial due to dementia. The case involved “pedal confusion” whereby it was alleged the defendant drove at speed into a shop killing an occupant.

Redcar and Cleveland BC v Baketime Ltd [2017 at Middleborough Magistrates]
The Defendant company, a biscuit manufacturer, suffered a rodent infestation creating a risk to public health.

HSE v Bespoke Bodies Ltd [2017 at Liverpool Crown Court]
The Defendant manufactured bespoke lorries. An employee went onto the roof of the factory in order to carry out maintenance and fell through it sustaining serious injuries.

Read more

HSE v M Baker Produce Ltd [2017 at Lincoln Magistrates]
The Defendant company operated a commercial farm which employed a number of seasonal workers. One of their employees was pulled into a piece of agricultural equipment sustaining injury.

HSE v TJSC Limited [ongoing at Exeter Crown Court]
The Defendant company is alleged to have breached sections 2 and 3 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 after a cherry picker toppled over crushing an operative who later died.

Cavell v Transport for London (2015) EWHC 2283
The High Court dealt with the issue of admissions of liability.

HSE v Habitat Construction LLP (2014)
Fall on a building site; complainant paralyzed; inadequate safety systems in place.

HSE v TG Engineering Ltd (2014)
Machine tool manufacturer; flying parts causing injury (potential fatality).

Westminster City Council v Charalambous & Co (2013)
Falling object from height on hotel customer; life changing head injuries.

HSE v Rare Butchers of Distinction (2013)
Butcher causing laceration with cleaver; inappropriate gauntlet.

Wandsworth County Council v Rayners Catering Hire Ltd (2013)
Death of an employee; catastrophic brain injury; fall in a warehouse; incorrectly stacked equipment by visitor to premises.

HSE v Hampson (2012)
Gas explosion at residential property; prosecuted under Gas Safety (installation & Use) Regulations 1998; serious injuries to occupants and severe structural damage to property.

HSE v Aden Pro Form (2011)
Experienced machine operator injured arm in metal press machine.

HSE v Cambs Compressor Engineering Ltd (2010)
Employee fell from height; life changing injuries.

Re: Hicks (2011)
Representing family of deceased; decapitation at work on railways. Coroner's Court before a jury.

Read less

If you would like to instruct Matthew Kerruish-Jones or would like help or advice in doing so, please call and talk to our excellent clerking team, led by Chief Executive/Director of Clerking, Paul Cray. Our phone number is +44 (0)20 7583 9241. Alternatively, please email us at

For more information about our clerking team, please click here for the clerks page.

Appointments & Memberships

Health and Safety Lawyers Association
Criminal Bar Association
Association of Contentious Trusts and Probate Specialists
Personal Injury Bar Association
London Common Law and Commercial Bar Association

Education & Qualifications

Manchester Metropolitan University, BVC
College of Law, PgDL
University of Manchester, Russian Studies BA (Hons)
Marlborough College, Wiltshire

Personal Interests

Married with children and lives in East London. Matthew enjoys motorcycling and keeping up to date with cinema when he can.