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Michael O'Neill

Year of call 2007, Lincoln’s Inn  

Areas of Expertise
Insurance Fraud, Personal Injury

GDPR Policy

Personal Injury: Band 3
"Michael gives an excellent service in terms of advocacy, paperwork and conferences. His technical knowledge and attention to detail are superb."
"Michael is a very experienced counsel on complex matters, and takes the time to provide very useful advice. He also provides well drafted documents."
"The speed at which he can identify the issues at the heart of a case and subsequently navigate them is second to none."

Chambers and Partners 2024

Personal Injury:
"Michael is a detail-oriented man. He is very thorough with papers and he has a commercial mindset."

Legal 500 2024

Personal Injury - Northern (Bar):
"Michael provides a very good client service. He is always well prepared, thoughtful, and a good team player." "He has a wealth of experience."

Chambers and Partners 2023

Personal Injury:
"Michael is great in court - skilful in cross-examination with a pleasing quality to his oral submissions. Solicitors and clients are put at ease by his natural down-to-earth style."

Legal 500 2023

Personal Injury: Leading Junior Band 2
"Very approachable and has a good relationship with clients."

Legal 500 2020


Mike practices exclusively in complex and large loss personal injury work.

Michael O'Neill

He is regularly instructed, by both Claimants and Defendants, in difficult and high value claims, routinely valued in excess of £500,000 and often over £2,000,000, featuring life changing orthopaedic injuries, pain disorders, brain injuries, amputations, epilepsy and fatal accidents.

Mike is routinely instructed to advise on liability, tactics and medical evidence at an early stage, and recommends the best strategic approach to see his cases through to a successful resolution, whether at a Joint Settlement Meeting or at trial.

He brings a forensic approach to his work, allowing him to quickly get to the heart of the issues in any case. He prides himself on his case analysis, judgment, approachability and skill as an advocate, and endeavours to bring added value to all of his instructions.

Mike is the Deputy Head of the Personal Injury team at 9SJS.



Mike's practice is exclusively in serious injury work. He deals with wide ranging complex cases, generally involving life changing injuries and fatal accidents. He is trusted to deal with cases valued in excess of £2,000,000 often against more senior and leading counsel.


Mike spent several years acting on behalf of insurers in motor fraud cases, securing fundamental dishonesty findings at trial on a regular basis.

His experience has given him an invaluable sense on what trial judges are looking for when considering this issue. He is well placed to advise his clients, both Claimants and Defendants, on the likelihood of a finding being made, and the evidence that needs to be adduced to assist.

That background in fraud work translates well to the issues surrounding credibility and dishonesty in higher value complex personal injury litigation. He is able to provide sound advice on tactics and strategy, including the timing of deployment of credibility evidence such as social media and surveillance evidence, and whether or not the issue should be fought at trial.


W x MS – Acted for D’s insurer in a deliberate running down road traffic case. D was convicted of attempted murder and C was left with a moderate to severe brain injury and various significant orthopaedic injuries. Mike was brought into the case at the medical evidence stage, and advised in conference with the experts in several disciplines. He represented D’s insurer at a contentious case management hearing and later at a JSM, where C was seeking damages in excess of £2.2 million. The case settled shortly thereafter, for £1.25 million.

A v C – Being led by Chris Kennedy KC in an alleged post-traumatic epilepsy case, pleaded in excess of £19 million. Medical causation is in issue and D’s counter schedule values the claim at just £15,000. Mike was entrusted with conducting a JSM on his own against both leading and junior counsel.

P v MIB – Acted for D. C sought damages of £2.2 million for severe abdominal injuries sustained in a road traffic accident. C was left with chronic incontinence which restricted her daily activities and work in law. Settled at a JSM for £700,000.

K x Y – Acted for C, a serving police officer crushed by a vehicle. He was forced to retire on ill health grounds. Settled shortly prior to trial for £425,000, following an unsuccessful JSM.

M v AM – Acted for C, who suffered a significant crush injury to his hand, leading to the complete amputation of three of his fingers. Contributory negligence was in issue. Settled at a JSM for £500,000.

B v MIB - Acted for D. C sought damages of circa £900,000 after suffering life threatening injuries in a road traffic accident. She suffered abdominal trauma, necessitating a stoma and subsequent reversal, and which left her with dietary intolerance and incontinence. The case settled at a JSM for £375,000.

C v V – Acted for D, defending a chronic pain case in which C sought damages of £435,000. Settled at a JSM for £90,000.

G v C – Acted for D in a fatal accident claim which settled at a JSM for £625,000.

Z v MIB – C suffered serious spinal and other orthopaedic injuries in a car accident in which her partner was killed. Mike acted for D from an early stage, assisted at a difficult case management conference and advised on tactics and medical evidence. C valued the claim at £1.3 million. Settled at a JSM for £260,000.

T v DBTH – Acted for C, who suffered a significant wrist injury following an accident at work. Liability is admitted. Repeated surgeries failed to improve functionality and C developed severe Complex Regional Pain Syndrome. Settled at a JSM for £750,000.

H v W – Acted for D in the defence of a claim brought by an injured motorcylist. C suffered a serious arm injury, depression and psoriasis and sought damages in excess of £600,000. Settled at a JSM for £115,000.

P v WWL - Acted for C, who suffered serious injuries to his dominant right arm in a workplace accident. Liability was admitted. He suffered a complete transection of the radial nerve and a mild brachial plexus injury. After unsuccessful surgeries, he was left with severe contractures of the shoulder, elbow and wrist, resulting in limited function. Settled at a JSM against leading counsel for the sum of £900,000.

R v JBFL – Acted for C, who suffered serious injuries after falling through a roof. Primary liability was admitted, but contributory negligence was in issue. D also alleged that C had been fundamentally dishonest as to the factual circumstances. Following a three-day trial, the Judge accepted C’s account, saw through the myriad of inconsistencies in D’s case, and found that all four of D’s witnesses had entirely fabricated their account of the accident. Contributory negligence was assessed at 25%. The claim later settled for £200,000

MC v SPL - Acted for the D in respect of a fatal accident claim. Liability was not disputed. C was a secondary victim, having witnessed the immediate aftermath of her son’s death. She suffered severe psychiatric injuries, but the principle disputes related to her loss of earnings and care claims. Her case was pleaded at circa £600,000. After an unsuccessful joint settlement meeting, C eventually accepted £120,000.

W v MT – Acted for D in relation to a workplace burning accident in which C suffered dermatological, optical and psychiatric injuries. He presented a schedule claiming in excess of £320,000. The case settled for £175,000 shortly after a JSM.

Scholarships and Prizes

Lord Denning Scholar


Personal Injury Bar Association


BVC - Manchester Metropolitan University
LLB Law - Liverpool University

Prescribed Information

Mr Michael O'Neill is a practising barrister, who is regulated by the Bar Standards Board. Details of information held by the BSB about Mr Michael O'Neill can be found here.

Mr Michael O’Neill's clerks will happily provide no obligation quotations for all legal services that he provides. Their contact details can be found here. It is most common for Mr Michael O’Neill to undertake court and advisory work for a brief fee plus any refresher days. For advisory work, paperwork and conferences it is most commonly charged at an hourly rate, although fixed fees can be agreed in advance upon sight of the papers. Conditional Fee Agreements will be considered in cases with favourable prospects of success. Mr Michael O'Neill will typically return paperwork within 14-21 days, however professional commitments, complexity and volume of documentation can affect these approximate timescales.

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