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John Craggs ACA

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Head of Chambers

0191 429 3838

Memberships

Member of the Middle Temple

Member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales

Education

Nottingham Law School
LLB (Europe) with French - 2005
Bar Vocational Course - 2006

Université de Montpellier I
Licence en Droit - 2004

Languages

French - Fluent
German - Intermediate

Year of Call - 2006

Expertise

 John read Law with French and spent a year living in Montpellier as part of his undergraduate degree. He was called to the Bar in 2006 and immediately commenced practice, spending time in Chambers in London and also in Jersey. He spent six years in practice, predominantly in Chancery, Commercial and Civil Litigation, Insolvency and Housing matters, appearing in both the County and High Courts on numerous occasions.

John is a dual-qualified Barrister and Chartered Accountant. From 2012, in between stints in legal practice, he spent five years working for two of the big four professional services firms (Deloitte and PwC), initially within Corporate and Personal Tax and later in Risk Assurance. He was admitted as an ICAEW-regulated Chartered Accountant in 2016, a role in which he remains accredited.

He has gained significant experience as a trial advocate and is adept at building and maintaining relationships with instructing solicitors. He is equally skilled at client care, being able to relate to and put at ease those whom he represents.

John founded North Square Barristers in 2023, with the specific goal of establishing a friendly, down to earth and positive chambers, for whom client experience is everything. He is committed to ensuring that he, and our chambers as a whole, provides the highest standard of service and client care. He always gives his all in the courtroom and can offer sensible, practical and honest advice. 

John is passionate about music and is a semi-professional musician, primarily a pianist. In a former life he played cocktail piano in various venues in Newcastle. He also plays guitar, piano and sings in a function band, gigging regularly across the north-east.

He enjoys spending time with his young family, and is a keen sportsman, including football, cricket, swimming, running and skiing. 

Family law

John has extensive experience in all areas of family practice, including publicly funded care proceedings and Financial Remedy matters. In matters of finance, his accountancy qualification and financial experience assist in his analysis and assimilation of the relevant information and putting forward the best interests of his clients.

Business and Property 

John has acted in a range of commercial disputes, as well as property matters  and insolvency. In this area, attention to detail in written advice and courtroom advocacy is essential, combined with an ability to offer succinct, understandable and realistic advice. This allows him to provide a high quality and effective service to clients.

Tax and VAT

John spent over 3 years working in tax compliance and advisory services within the big four, also gaining exposure to high value tax and VAT litigation. Being dual qualified, he is in the unique position of being able to offer insight into tax matters from both a legal and commercial standpoint. He is one of the very few Barristers in the country to hold both qualifications, the combination of which is almost non-existent outside of London. He has accepted instructions in both Tax and VAT Tribunals as well as providing advisory services in respect of both.

Crime

John has represented numerous clients in Crown Court matters, as well as in the Court of Appeal. His experience includes lengthy and multi-handed jury trials and applications under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002. In the latter, and in general financial crime and matters of fraud, his financial background and qualifications have been of immeasurable value in interpreting information and its subsequent analysis and application in court.

 

Advisory work

 

John has a significant written practice, advising regularly on the merits of cases, producing opinions on merits and quantum and drafting pleadings. This wide exposure to other areas of law means that he is adaptable to the receipt of instructions in numerous fields and is adept at grasping the complexities presented by them in a very short time frame.

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