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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In the United Kingdon, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for eight years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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Clinical negligence: claimant

Index of tables

  1. Clinical negligence: claimant
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next Generation Partners
  4. Rising stars

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1
    • Diana Infanti - Gotelee Solicitors

At Ashtons Legal, injury services represent a core part of the firm's strategy and its large practice has a stellar track record in the highest-value and most complex cases of physical and psychological injury. Sandra Patton leads the medical injury team, which includes leading practitioners Tom Cook, who specialises in cerebral palsy and other complex and high-value birth or neonatal injury claims, and APIL senior litigator Sharon Allison, whose skills include advocacy at inquests. Rising star associates Ben Ward and Julie Crossley are also recommended.

Practice head(s):Sandra Patton

Other key lawyers:Tom Cook; Sharon Allison; Ben Ward; Julie Crossley

Work highlights

  • Sandra Patton is handling a multimillion-pound claim for alleged negligence when a hospital sent a mother home when she was in labour, which resulted in the baby sustaining hypoxic brain injury.

Irwin Mitchell is regarded as one of the leading medical negligence firms in the UK and the Cambridge office. Led by Guy Forster, it upholds this reputation with multimillion-pound settlements in high-value and complex catastrophic injury cases including birth injury, adult and child brain injury, spinal injury, amputations and fatal accidents. The practice also has a specialist public law team that handles cases in which an individual’s care or health needs are not being met by a local authority or clinical commissioning groups, and also handles Court of Protection, trust, probate and special educational needs. Other names to note are rising stars are Gurpreet Lalli, Sarah Wealleans and Sophie Bales.

Practice head(s):Guy Forster

Other key lawyers:Sophie Bales; Gurpreet Lalli; Sarah Wealleans

Testimonials

"I bend over backwards to accept instructions from this team. They are extremely well organised and effective. The paperwork is always well prepared; and the conferences run like clockwork."

"Guy Forster is a fantastic advocate for his clients; a stickler for the detail and extremely thorough."

"Guy Forster really gets his teeth into the case and has great carry-over, remembering the details of reports and discussions even as the months roll by."

"The standards applied by the practice are high with excellent case management and communication."

"The team is supportive to clients and experts and is able to achieve appropriate and successful outcomes. I would have no hesitation in recommending this practice."

"Its expertise in medical/clinical matters- including sudden and preventable deaths, and its profile and commitment to achieving change through justice means the firm stands out from what can look like a cluttered legal market place."

"Guy Forster is clearly extremely competent and hugely supportive. Dealing with traumatised relatives takes skill and compassion - he has this in abundance."

"Guy Forster works very flexibly and I feel is always available to deal with my questions. Rosamund Stafford is flexible efficient kind & compassionate."

Work highlights

  • Guy Forster represents a woman, aged 25, who suffered a massive stroke which left her with permanent brain damage and who requires substantial care and lacks capacity to manage her affairs.
  • Representing a 5-year old girl who has cerebral palsy due to her developing rare condition kernicterus in the early days of life.
  • Acting for a 7-year old child who suffered bacterial meningitis resulting in deafness in a claim concerning a failure by a commercial out-of-hours GP service to suspect a potential diagnosis of meningitis and make an urgent referral to hospital.
  • Acting for the widow and 9-year old son of a man who died after contracting the CMV virus following a pancreatic transplant, in which there were a series of negligent delays in treating the virus and in which, due to a laboratory mix-up, the organ was infected.
  • Acting for a child who has spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy following starvation of oxygen shortly before she was delivered, as her mother suffered a placental abruption preventing the baby from receiving the blood supply and oxygen it needs.

'In my opinion, it is the best of the best by a long way', remarks a client of Tees Law, who notes that its lawyers are 'personal, caring and very thorough'. The firm has one of the largest, most well-established and experienced practices in the region. It handles high-value and complex matters arising from, inter alia, adult and child brain injury, fatalities, delays in cancer diagnosis, gynaecology, orthopaedic surgery, dental and plastic surgery. Practice head Janine Collier and new hire from Slater and Gordon Tim Deeming, who is 'a master tactician', are the key partners. Senior associate and APIL senior litigator Adam Copeland is also recommended. Paul Taylor moved to Richard Buxton to practice environmental law.

Practice head(s):Janine Collier

Other key lawyers:Tim Deeming; Adam Copeland

Testimonials

"I have been dealing with Tees for approximately 35 years and have found them to be very professional in all aspects of law. They employ the best people in their field and, to date, I have not been let down."

"A very friendly and committed team that leaves no stone unturned in investigating cases and gets good results in difficult and unusual cases."

"Janine Collier is a really dedicated, very intelligent and excellent lawyer who leads a very good team."

"From the very beginning they took me through the process thoroughly step by step. The firm's biggest strength is that they never give up and they did battle well for us."

"Another of their strengths is bringing the best medical experts to the table. Tees kept me confidant at all times."

"Tim Deeming is someone I was proud to have represent me."

"Tees draws on its vast experience to bring the very best medical experts to the table. I had confidence in the team and was highly delighted with the substantial settlement."

"I feel our case has been dealt with very efficiently and everyone we have worked with has shown compassion and empathy during a very difficult time for us."

"Janine Collier has been wonderful to work with, she has kept us informed throughout the process and is always happy to answer queries via email or phone. We feel she has completely supported us and we feel very lucky to have her on our side."

"The key individuals we deal with at Tees are always at the end of the phone or email. We receive updates by phone regularly, without prompting, and have always had any queries answered immediately."

"Janine Collier's advice has been invaluable and we have felt extremely comfortable and confident in her and her team from the start."

Work highlights

  • Janine Collier and David Jacobs secured £3.5m for the widow and children of a City worker who died following routine surgery at a private London hospital.
  • Janine Collier and Vanessa Thompson secured £2.87m for a lady who suffered a severe brain injury after four GPs failed to act on abnormal blood test results and refer to hospital, delaying treatment for high sodium levels.
  • Adam Copeland and Isobel Foenander secured a provisional damages award of £450,000 for a 17-month delay in diagnosing breast cancer in a 23-year-old lady.
  • Adam Copeland and Isobel Foenander achieved £400,000 compensation for a man who suffered a nerve injury during acromioclavicular joint reconstruction surgery.
  • Janine Collier secured £140,000 and significant non-monetary relief in a claim against a Hospital Trust for failure to properly manage subglottic stenosis.

Fosters has a well-established presence in Norfolk and Suffolk thanks to its blend of experienced senior lawyers and up-and-coming practitioners. Practice head Stephen Green, who handles claims against hospitals, GPs and the Ambulance Service, and consultant Ian Comer have more than 60 years' combined experience in medical negligence. Associate and APIL-accredited litigator David Gabell, who is 'very good with clients, very bright and efficient', has specialist expertise in gynaecology, fertility, orthopaedic and general surgery claims. Solicitor Barry Grogan is also recommended.

Practice head(s):Stephen Green

Other key lawyers:David Gabell; Ian Comer

Testimonials

"David Gabell is a very sharp and precise man. He kept me on my toes at all times and is very smart operator."

"David Gabell  listens well an ultimately makes the right judgement for his client."

"David Gabell is an excellent solicitor who has recently joined the team. He is very hardworking, efficient and pleasant to deal with."

Gotelee Solicitors has a small but experienced clinical negligence practice that focuses on client care and partner-led advice in complex and technically demanding cases. Practice head and APIL-accredited clinical negligence specialist Tim Humpage has 23 years' experience in medical negligence cases against Hospital Trusts, GP surgeries, dentists and opticians. Partner and former nurse Diana Infanti specialises in high-value, complex cases including Fatal Accident Act claims, delayed cancer diagnosis and mental health claims.

Practice head(s):Tim Humpage

Other key lawyers:Diana Infanti

Testimonials

"Gotelee Solicitors has cornered the market exceptionally well in their area. They offer an excellent face to face service for clients and have an impressive range of cases."

"When instructions are received from Gotelee Solicitors you know that they have vetted the cases well and that there is a good quality claim. They are excellent at achieving a good settlement for their clients, but are also not afraid to fight a matter to trial if the offers on the table are too low."

"Diana Infanti knows how to work cooperatively with defendant solicitors, but is not afraid to stand her ground when it is legally or procedurally called for; she has the perfect balance. She always achieves the absolute best for her clients."

Morgan Jones Pett joins the ranking this year as its two-partner practice punches above its weight in terms of the value and complexity of cases it handles. Its work ranges in scope from brain injuries to simple missed fractures, and the firm frequently handles matters arising from cerebral palsy and cancer misdiagnosis. David Jones and Sara Westwood are the key partners and both are deputies appointed by the Court of Protection to manage the affairs of clients who lack capacity. Legal executive Simon Bransby is also recommended.

Practice head(s):Sara Westwood; David Jones

Other key lawyers:Simon Bransby

Testimonials

"Simon Bransby is extremely helpful, and approachable. He went to great lengths to gain an understanding of some of the more unusual aspects of my case, and I had no reason to ever fault him."

Work highlights

  • Represented a client who suffered permanent neurological symptoms due to the failure of several clinicians to diagnose a congenital defect of the spinal cord.
  • A case arising from negligent delay in the delivery of baby, resulting in severe brain injury causing death.
  • Sara Westwood represented a client at an inquest following the death of his wife at a nursing home.
  • Represented the parents of a baby girl who had died at only a few weeks of age following failure by an out-of-hours GP to refer the child to hospital.
  • Sara Westwood secured £250,000 for a client who had his leg amputated due to a failure by the hospital to provide prompt treatment.

Buckles Solicitors LLP has the most prominent clinical negligence practice in Peterborough. Practice head Roger Clarke has more than 30 years’ experience in high-value personal injury and clinical negligence matters, and he routinely acts against NHS Trusts, GPs and dentists. APIL-accredited associate Martin Herson is particularly well known for his advocacy at inquests.

Practice head(s):Roger Clarke

Other key lawyers:Martin Herson

Work highlights

  • Martin Herson secured £150,000 in a claim against an  NHS Hospital Trust for causing a 4th degree perineal tear during labour.
  • Martin Herson handled a £100,000 fatal claim following the death of the claimant’s husband, Mr John Naylor (deceased), arising from negligent failure to diagnose abdominal aortic aneurysm.
  • The firm secured damages for neurological injury following the negligent adjustment of screw which fixed a cranial halo in place.
  • Martin Herson is pursuing a claim for failure to diagnose complex hyperplasia leading to early hysterectomy.
  • The firm is representing a deceased man's estate in a claim arising from the alleged failure by registered GPs to identify and refer the patient for suspected throat cancer.

Clapham & Collinge Solicitors joins the ranking this year due to the growing caseload of clinical negligence matters handled by key partner Philip Lumb, who has been working this field for 17 years. The firm, which has a growing client base across Norfolk, frequently handles claims arising from Accident & Emergency treatment, dentistry, cosmetic surgery, GP diagnosis and treatment, oncology, orthopaedics, obstetrics and gynaecology.

Practice head(s):Philip Lumb

Work highlights

  • The firm handled a claim for unsatisfactory dental work carried out over a nine-year period.
  • The firm represented a woman in a case concerning failure to prescribe an appropriate dose of a medication.
  • The firm is handling a claim against a teaching hospital alleging failure to diagnose kidney cancer.
  • A hospital negligence claim concerning complications in treatment of a diabetic patient.

Rogers and Norton has a small but highly experienced team centred on the expertise of Tim Nobbs, who handles a growing caseload of high-value matters. Personal injury partner Mark Hambling also handles clinical negligence matters. The firm has a strong following around Norwich and throughout Norfolk.

Practice head(s):Tim Nobbs

Other key lawyers:Mark Hambling

Work highlights

  • Mark Hambling handled a complex claim for negligence leading to the death of a woman due to failure to replace a plastic stent with a metal stent.

Scrivenger Seabrook Limited has a small but high-quality team of seasoned practitioners who handle matters of the highest value and complexity. Key partner Vicki Seabrook has 40 years' experience and was formerly legal adviser to the Royal College of Nursing before founding the firm. Her recent successes include securing a settlement for a child with severe brain damage worth in excess of £8m. Key partner and former staff nurse Sarah Newcombe brings her first-hand experience of NHS and private hospital practice to bear on complex cases. Also recommended is Helen Hillson who stands out for high-value and fatal cases such as those concerning delays in diagnosis of cancer.

Practice head(s):Vicki Seabrook

Other key lawyers:Sarah Newcombe


Clinical negligence: defendant

Index of tables

  1. Clinical negligence: defendant
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Rising stars

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Rising stars

  1. 1

'I cannot recommend them highly enough', says a client of Kennedys, where the lawyers are 'friendly, approachable and efficient'. The firm specialises in defendant clinical negligence work and acts for NHS Resolution in resolving claims for healthcare trusts and Clinical Commissioning Groups. The firm also has strong relationships with East Anglian healthcare trusts and also handles claims management matters for a leading insurer. The 'approachable and helpful' Robert Tobin leads the Cambridge office, which is known for 'personal, direct and reliable service'. Key partner Amanda Mead is also recommended. Other names to note are senior associates Samantha Williams, Camilla Long and Margaret Duncan.

Practice head(s):Robert Tobin

Other key lawyers:Amanda Mead; Samantha Williams; Camilla Long; Margaret Duncan

Testimonials

"Staff are on the end of a phone and there are never any delays in getting help or advice. You get straightforward and understandable legal assistance."

"Amanda Mead and Rob Tobin are extremely knowledgeable and have access to a wealth of extended information and contacts if needed. They are accessible and flexible and help with many random scenarios."

"Kennedys' client service is exceptional. The team are very talented and experienced with a very good customer focus. They are always keen to go the extra mile and provide top-quality, clear advice."

Key Clients

NHS Resolution

Work highlights

  • Won CM v King’s College Hospital NHS Trust on appeal, which concerned an alleged failure to identify a substantial retained piece of placenta, an inappropriate discharge without further investigations or treatment, and a subsequent delay in undertaking evacuation surgery.
  • Won a High Court trial for NHS Resolution arising from a claim pursued by the daughters of a woman who was murdered by an NHS Trust patient.
  • Won AH v NHS England at trial for NHS Resolution following a claim related to L4/L5 spinal fusion
  • Won AC v NHS Commissioning Board at trial for NHS Resolution following a claim for alleged negligent failure to perform revision surgery on left knee when there were allegedly signs of loosening in 2011 and 2013.  

Mills & Reeve LLP's Norwich office, supported by an extended team in Manchester and London, is part of the firm's nationwide offering for the defence of clinical negligence claims. Experienced litigator Stephen King leads the practice and is national head of the insurance department. The firm's strategy is not to act for NHS Resolution, but to directly represent NHS Trusts, individual practitioners and insurers. It also operates an out-of-hours medico-legal and dento-legal support service Mills & Reeve First Response. Senior associate Matthew Wilson and associate Sophie Briggs are also recommended.

Practice head(s):Stephen King

Key Clients

WRB Underwriting

Virgin Care

Global Diagnostics

Partnerships in Care

Zurich Global

Beazley PLC

Elite

Spire

Merseycare

CFC

Allied World


Personal injury: claimant

Index of tables

  1. Personal injury: claimant
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Rising stars

Ashtons Legal has a truly regional practice with experienced practitioners in many of its offices. Head of personal injury Richard Foyster leads the practice from the Ipswich office, where senior associate and APIL Senior Litigator Tom Ranson has more than 20 years' experience. In the Thetford office, key partner Hannah Clarke, senior associate Siobhan Thacker and highly regarded associate Mick Upton, who joined from Slater and Gordon, are the key contacts. Partner Michael Wangermann in Bury St Edmunds also plays a pivotal role in the practice. The firm is known for the quality of its client care, delivered partly through dedicated client liaison managers, and its stellar track record in complex cases involving, inter alia, serious brain injury, particularly in children, spinal injury, amputation and industrial disease.

Practice head(s):Richard Foyster

Other key lawyers:Hannah Clarke; Michael Wangermann; Tom Ranson; Siobhan Thacker; Mick Upton

Testimonials

'An experienced asbestos disease team in a region that perhaps lacks depth in this area.'

'Phoebe Osborne is very experienced in asbestos claims and very conscientious - she will go the extra mile.'

The 'friendly and knowledgeable' practice at Barr Ellison LLP provides the full range of services to clients and their families including Court of Protection, personal injury trusts, wills, family and property law advice. The firm has a dedicated office within Addenbrooke’s Hospital and is highly regarded for multiple catastrophic brain injury, spinal injury, psychological injury and amputation cases. As well as achieving high-value settlements, the practice frequently obtains significant interim payments under the Rehab and Serious Injury Codes to secure specially adapted accommodation for their clients. Head of personal injury Emma Truin and associates Daryl Robinson (who is 'friendly, forthright and honest') and Mark Copley are highly recommended.

Practice head(s):Emma Truin

Other key lawyers:Daryl Robinson; Mark Copley

Testimonials

"Friendly, knowledgeable and available for questions."

"Good team working - the team members respect each others views and work hard for their clients."

"The individuals I work with stand out as they are well aware of the importance of early rehabilitation and strive hard to get that in place for their clients."

"This is an excellent outfit that specialises in high-value personal injury claims. They have a very personal touch and are widely respected in the East Anglian region. I think client care makes this firm unique."

"Without exception, clients feel supported and engaged in the process. I would say they are the best personal injury firm in East Anglia for catastrophic injury cases."

"Daryl Robinson is hugely experienced and very well respected. He puts everything into his cases and has an enormous wealth of knowledge to call upon. Clients love him."

"Emma Truin is very capable. She is well known for her catastrophic injury work and has shown herself to be very adept at leading the personal injury team."

"Mark Copley is an excellent solicitor who really knows his stuff."

"Barr Ellison offers a strong and trusted boutique service for clients who admire and trust them."

"Daryl Robinson has no obvious weaknesses. He is methodical, organised and always goes the extra mile for his clients."

"Daryl Robinson is sympathetic and empathetic. The families of the injured know that in Daryl they have the complete litigator who is prepared to fight their corner robustly."

"This is a small, experienced niche practice in Cambridge that provides a client-centred service. They have a a depth of expertise amongst the team and deal confidently with some of the trickiest cases."

"Emma Truin is one of the most approachable and empathetic of PI lawyers and is trusted by her clients and by those who are instructed by her. However, she is also tenacious in getting the best outcomes for her clients. She is now an impressive advocate for her clients."

"A friendly team and approachable. Professional and supportive of the client and case managers. They do go the extra mile if the clients have a problem."

"Emma Truin is extremely friendly and stays in touch with clients and all concerned. She visits at home and offers help to the team wherever possible. Daryl Robinson is also helpful and informs the clients of the expectations within the case."

At Irwin Mitchell, the service is 'absolutely outstanding', according to one client and is highly recommended for the full range of serious injury, asbestos and armed forces matters. Practice head Neil Whiteley's areas of specialism encompass  brain, spinal cord and poly-trauma injuries, but he excels most in traumatic brain injury matters. One client remarks that he is 'exceptional in every aspect' of complex claims. Ruth Booy specialises in complex and high-value catastrophic injury cases, with a particular focus on child brain injury matters. The 'honest and upfront' Simon Harrington handles Ministry of Defence claims, along with newly promoted associate Alexander Davenport, and is a leading lawyer for cases involving injuries sustained through cold weather exposure. Rosemary Giles leads the firm's acclaimed asbestos claims team, in which rising star associate Samantha Shaw plays a key role.

Practice head(s):Neil Whiteley

Other key lawyers:Ruth Booy; Simon Harrington; Rosemary Giles

Testimonials

"After taking over my claim after previous solicitors were closed down, they were one hundred percent on top of it."

"I couldn't ask for a more proactive or professional team to deal with my case."

"Simon Harrington is by far one of the most helpful professionals I have ever had the pleasure to meet and work with."

"Simon Harrington is top class and obviously a huge asset to Irwin Mitchell."

The PI team in Cambridge has a pre-eminent reputation for serious brain, spinal, amputee and other complex injuries, specialist armed forces and disease cases. It also has vast expertise in handling accidents at work cases and demonstrates great courage in pursuing the most challenging of cases."

"Frequently, the team has secured large interim payments to facilitate rehabilitation of seriously injured clients and I am aware that Irwin Mitchell have a mandatory rehabilitation policy to ensure that our clients benefit from early support where required."

"Irwin Mitchell offers a holistic range of services integrating a wide range of consumer services under the Irwin Mitchell brand. Personal Injury clients also benefit from the support available from Cambridge based services in Court of Protection."

"Ruth Booy  is a serious player in the PI market and no case is too big for her to litigate in an exceptional fashion. She takes no prisoners in her pursuit of rightful damages for her clients and is the go to PI practitioner in Cambridge."

 

Work highlights

  • A serious injury claim, which succeeded against a full denial of liability by the defendant. Due to lack of progress by previous solicitors, the firm turned the case around and prepared the evidence on liability from scratch.
  • A complex injury claim settled for a client that came from a previous solicitor who had not prepared the evidence and was in default of court orders and the timetable.
  • Ruth Booy acted in a multimillion-pound compensation claim for life changing injuries resulting in paraplegia.
  • Ruth Booy handled a high-value compensation claim for life changing injuries resulting in caudia equine syndrome.
  • Ruth Booy handled a high-value compensation claim for life changing injuries resulting in lower limb amputation.

Slater and Gordon has a large team of 'highly experienced specialist personal injury lawyers who are extremely professional and yet caring and personal'. The firm operates a multi-track office in Cambridge handling complex multimillion-pound brain and spinal injury claims, as well as military, CICA, fatal accident and repetitive strain injury matters. The 'extremely knowledgeable and conscientious' Angela Beric is child brain injury and CICA specialist. Brain and spinal injury specialist Paul Tapner routinely wins large settlements; military claims specialist Richard Gaffney has a strong track record of in traumatic brain injury, fatal accident and amputation matters; and the 'highly professional' Crystal Eaton is a rising star.

Other key lawyers:Paul Tapner; Angela Beric; Richard Gaffney;

Testimonials

"Compared to other companies, this team is at the level of a transplant surgical team or a Formula One team that is always ahead due to its efficency and professional knowledge."

"The PI team and Court of Protection teams have a strong skill base and are extremely knowledgeable in all aspects of PI and financial management."

"Angela Beric is extremely knowledgeable in PI and particularly in the areas of severe and traumatic brain injury in adults and children. I value her skills and expertise. She works well with case managers, the client, their family and other health and social care professionals."

"The Cambridge office retains the personal touch of local solicitors while still being part of a much larger operation."

"Angela Beric is experienced and diligent and has considerable empathy with her clients."

"Paul Tapner has enormous experience and is a shrewd tactician."

"I cannot praise them highly enough!"

"Richard Gaffney is a top expert, yet always available and trying his best, and he is highly respectful of injured clients".

"They give a very good service to their clients. They are diligent in their investigations, go to great lengths to pursue claims and make things as easy as possible for the client."

"Paul Tapner has a sound practical approach to cases, and is an excellent tactician with huge experience and unsurpassed client handling skills. He will achieve the best possible result for the client."

"Angela Beric is very experienced and hardworking with a grasp of detail and a lot of common sense. The type of solicitor you need on a difficult case."

Key Clients

Child Brain Injury Trust

Headway

Eastern Region Brain Injury Forum

East Anglia Vocational Rehabilitation Group

Cyclist Interest group

Trauma Networks

Work highlights

  • Accident resulting in surgery in which complications arose.
  • Cycling accident resulting in brain injury.
  • Road traffic accident resulting in brain injury.

Buckles Solicitors LLP has a small but reliable team handling multi-track claimant personal injury matters from Peterborough. Partner Roger Clarke leads the practice, in which associate and experienced advocate Martin Herson is a rising star. The firm's workload includes several industrial disease claims, some of which are referred through the respiratory team at Peterborough City Hospital. The practice also handles fatal accident claims through referrals from the its large probate team and externally from professional contacts.

Practice head(s):Roger Clarke

Other key lawyers:Martin Herson

Testimonials

"Martin Herson is very honest and explains everything to the client."

"With Martin Herson, I always had good communication that always ended with a good outcome."

Work highlights

  • A £200,000 mesothelioma claim arising from alleged negligent exposure to asbestos by Mr Harding whilst working at Brighton Power Station in the late 1960s. Diagnosed late 2017, but tragically died 10 months after diagnosis. Matter started as live mesothelioma claim but now changed to a fatal claim with complex issues on causation and damages given specific pension provisions.
  • A £300,000 employer liability claim for a client who sustained a significant wrenching injury to left arm causing permanent muscle and nerve damage. The client will not be able to return to pre-existing job and employment prospects are low, given the level of disability. The client has had two surgeries and likely to need more, given the onset given the likelihood of CRPS.
  • A £100,000 RTA claim following a serious accident causing significant and multiple injuries. There are issues of head injury requiring specialist neurological opinion. Also, internal injuries to kidneys, given impact of accident and ICU admission. This case is a complex dispute on causation, given significant pre-accident health issues.
  • A £250,000 RTA claim for a client aged 21 at the time of the accident, who suffered multiple injuries. He suffered severe injuries to his lower limbs, which required knee surgery as well as a head injury which has caused neurological issues, as well as impacting on eyesight.
  • A £100,000 crushing injury claim involving a young girl who seriously injured left ring finger when a large iron radiator fell from its support at a wedding venue. Crushing injury with partial amputation, plus fractures to adjoining fingers. Prosthetic expert evidence being taken to assist with long-term cosmetic appearance, given the injury to the finger.

Ellisons Solicitors in Ipswich handles a broad range of work including high-end catastrophic injury, fatal accident, acquired brain injury, RTA, psychiatric and industrial disease claims. Practice head Robert Gair has 30 years' experience in personal injury matters and 'handles every case with in-depth care and precision'. Legal executive Bernice Spurgeon  'has a practical "can do" attitude and a realistic approach to case management'. Solicitor Sarah Dawes frequently handles severe orthopaedic and brain injury cases.

Practice head(s):Robert Gair

Testimonials

"The PI department manages to combine in-depth experience with a 'local' and personal feel."

"With Robert Gair, no stone is left unturned."

The highly experienced team at Fosters handles a large quantity and variety of claims and has a track record of achieving significant settlements for clients across Norfolk and Suffolk. Stephen Green, who leads the practice, and consultant Ian Comer have more than 60 years' experience between them, and both have Headway panel accreditation. Associate Barry Grogan recently settled several high-value cases including a fatality claim. 'They are very very good at keeping in touch - very reassuring and competent' remarks a client.

Practice head(s):Stephen Green

Other key lawyers:Ian Comer; Barry Grogan

Testimonials

"There is an excellent team dealing with personal injury at Fosters -  you get an immediate response from them with any inquiry and all of the team are fully up to speed with your case."

"As soon as I put my case in their hands I felt full confidence in their ability to handle and progress it to a satisfactory conclusion."

"Stephen Green is so good at explaining the process."

Gotelee Solicitors handles complex and technically demanding personal injury matters. The firm is a key player in the Suffolk market but is steadily building its brand further afield. Clients note that practice head and 'true champion of claimants' James Davies, solicitor Stevan Stratton and legal executive Howard Bush are 'prepared to go the extra mile to secure the best result'. The practice frequently handles claims involving sexual abuse, elder abuse, stress at work claims, neglect and wrongful death relating to public bodies, mesothelioma and asbestos cases, as well as fast-track RTA and employer liability claims.

Practice head(s):James Davies

Other key lawyers:Howard Bush; Stevan Stratton

Testimonials

"The team is totally committed to securing the best possible outcome for its clients."

"They are knowledgeable in the areas of expertise and have a sensible and pragmatic approach to litigation"

"They are all team players and value the close working relationship they share with counsel."

Work highlights

  • Representing a client in relation to a back injury sustained at work.
  • Handling a claim for compensation as a consequence of the client contracting an asbestos-related disease.
  • Handling a claim for compensation arising as a result of elder abuse.
  • Representing a claimant who suffered significant soft tissue injuries in high-speed rear end shunt.
  • Advising a client who suffered a significant crush injury to the hand in an accident at work.

Hunt & Coombs LLP focuses on high-value and complex cases and deals purely with multi-track claims. Practice head Naina Tilney, who handles both claimant and defendant matters, has 30 years' experience in personal injury law. During the last five years, she has helped the firm increase its flow of serious injury work by 900%, handling cases with damages ranging from £100,000 up to £9.5m. Her practice includes rising star Richard Moon, who handles brain, orthopaedic and psychiatric injury matters, and has a particular interest in cases involving chronic pain disorders.

Practice head(s):Naina Tilney

Other key lawyers:RIchard Moon; Mariam Alipour; Darren Fletcher

Testimonials

"The firm's letters of enquiry and instructions are always very clear."

"The team is easy to communicate with and is responsive to queries and requests."

"I have valued Naina Tilney's direct approach and the ease of working with her."

"The concern for client care shown by this team is stronger than others."

"An excellent firm local to East Anglia. It has a strong knowledge base."

"I regard this firm as an excellent example of a mid-size regional firm, which provides the 'human touch' to its clients, including some who have suffered life changing or disabling injuries."

Naina Tilney. She is the heart and soul of the personal injury team.

Work highlights

  • A £2m claim for a pillion passenger involved in a serious road traffic accident who sustained life-changing orthopaedic and vascular injuries which are being investigated with medico-legal experts. She also sustained a head injury which resulted in neuropsychological intervention.
  • A £100,000 claim for a cyclist involved in a road traffic accident. He suffered a double open fracture of the left tibia and fibula and required skin grafting of his upper leg. An interim payment was obtained to assist him in his recovery and rehabilitation, and his home has been adapted.
  • A £9.5m claim for a man involved in an RTA which resulted in full amputation of his right leg, and further life-threatening injuries including internal pelvic injuries, and resulting in the use of a stoma bag and ongoing complications.
  • A £1m claim for a young mother and wife involved in motorbike accident whilst travelling as a pillion passenger. She sustained serious multiple injuries including a brain injury, and her mobility was restricted. Recovered £100,000 interim payment to assist the claimant with intense physiotherapy, hydrotherapy and psychological support.
  • A £500,000 claim for a client injured in a head-on RTA. Initial symptoms of neurological damage to the spine and shoulder, which have gradually developed into a psychologically-mediated chronic pain syndrome, alongside PTSD.

Niche litigation firm Morgan Jones Pett joins the ranking this year thanks to the high quality of work undertaken by its two-partner PI practice. The firm handles every type of personal injury claim from low to high value, which includes cases involving head injuries, spinal injuries and industrial disease. Key partner David Jones has more than 30 years' experience in the field and is known for securing large settlements in catastrophic injury and fatal accident claims. Sara Westwood has more than 15 years' experience and is known for her work in cases involving spinal injuries, which may include pre-existing conditions, and acquired brain injury.

Practice head(s):Sara Westwood; David Jones

Other key lawyers:Simon Bransby

Testimonials

"I found Morgan, Jones Pett to be friendly, approachable, efficient and always willing to ensure that I was fully informed of progress, and that I understood the entire process."

"Simon Bransby was extremely helpful, and approachable. He went to great lengths to gain an understanding of some of the more unusual aspects of my case, and I had no reason to ever fault him. He was always courteous and made me feel valued as a client."

Work highlights

  • Represented a primary school child who was knocked over by a car; the case settled for £9m.
  • Represented several members of the family of 7-year old Summer Grant who died in 2016 when the bouncy castle she was playing on blew away because it wasn’t properly secured.
  • Secured a payment for a claimant who suffered an injury whilst working at a chicken factory.

Rogers and Norton in Norwich has a small but highly experienced team that frequently handles cases with values in excess of £1m. The firm climbs the ranking on the back of a successful track record of settlements achieved by key partners Mark Hambling and Tim Nobbs. Hambling not only handles litigation, but also works as a Deputy in personal injury settlements. He frequently acts for elderly and vulnerable clients. Nobbs handles both personal injury and clinical negligence claims, particularly those involving employer liability and industrial disease.

Practice head(s):Mark Hambling; Tim Nobbs

Other key lawyers:Hannah Rudling

Work highlights

  • Successful negotiation of a settlement in an employer liability claim involving machinery in relation to lower limb crushing injuries sustained and the consequent losses.
  • A claim involving a collision between two buses, the case being made all the more complex by pre-existing medical issues giving rise to complex causative issues. The client had initiated the claim herself but given the complexity and variety of the injuries sustained, this necessitated intervention to ensure that the claim was settled at the appropriate value.
  • Advising client in respect of an employer liability claim involving life-changing damage to both lower limbs causing the client not to be able to return to his former employment.
  • Representing the claimant who was acting on behalf of a minor who sustained injury during a swimming lesson at the minor’s school to include a fully contested case which was settled one calendar month prior to trial. The case was complicated given the age of the witnesses and the necessity to obtain statements in the presence of parents.
  • The firm acted for an individual in respect of an employer liability claim (a fall from height) which gave rise to significant causative complications in respect of a pre-existing psychiatric history necessitating a forensic evaluation of the impact of the psychiatric trauma in particular when added to the physical limitations that were caused as a consequence of the fall.

At Fraser Dawbarns, personal injury is handled by the civil litigation practice, which is led by the 'understanding. empathetic and accessible' Neil John in Wisbech. John and newly hired senior associate Marcus Chapman in the March office, who was previously at Kenneth Bush, handle personal injury matters as part of their broad litigation practices, which include a steady flow of serious injury and RTA cases.

Practice head(s):Neil John

Other key lawyers:Marcus Chapman

Testimonials

"They are always polite and helpful, and always respond to questions in a timely manner."

"They are responsive and understanding of the issues."

"Neil John responded quickly and was comprehensive in his explanations when outlining his suggested course of action. He listened!"

Work highlights

  • The claimant fell from her bicycle and broke her ankle whilst avoiding a car that had emerged from a side road. There was no contact and the driver denied liability.
  • The claimant had a parcel delivered to her property. This was placed directly outside her back door and she tripped and fell when exiting her property, fracturing her wrist. Damages were pursued and a settlement was agreed.
  • The claimant was helping a delivery driver move a cage that had frozen into the back of the lorry. The driver knocked the claimant off the trailer ramp and pushed the cage off the lorry onto the claimant’s ankle. A settlement was agreed and, later, costs.
  • This case should have been a straight forward road traffic accident but was complicated by the fact that the defence initially ran that their insured suffered a form of seizure that rendered him an automaton. The claim was successfully agreed.
  • The claimant was a teacher who suffered an alleged bullying incident by the Deputy Head of her school while in their employment. She suffered a psychological condition and was unable to continue working at the school. Settlement successfully reached.

Niche claimant injury firm Scrivenger Seabrook Limited in St Neots has a highly respected personal injury specialist in Marc Folgate, who frequently handles complex and high-value cases. His work encompasses serious injury, brain injury and fatal injury matters for claimants across the UK.

Practice head(s):Marc Folgate

Cozens-Hardy LLP has a dedicated PI specialist in partner Damian Short, who leads the firm's accidents team. He has particular expertise in representing clients with acquired traumatic brain injury. He is on the specialist solicitors’ panel of Headway, and is a member of the Law Society’s Personal Injury Panel. Associate Jane Welsh handles claims against employers and public bodies, including brain injury and asbestos disease claims.

Practice head(s):Damian Short

Other key lawyers:Jane Welsh


Personal injury: defendant

Index of tables

  1. Personal injury: defendant
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next Generation Partners
  4. Rising stars

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Rising stars

  1. 1

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP has a national practice for personal injury defence work that is run from its Ipswich office. Head of corporate claims Nicola Lashmar , Paul Coppin and Louise Bland are the key partners in a practice that is frequently involved in the most significant matters in the market. The practice handles high-value national and cross-border matters and is frequently involved in litigation across Europe, in Africa and China. It also handles day-to-day matters for clients such as National Grid plc, Cadent Gas and Anglian Water Services. Rising star associate Wayne Donovan is also recommended.

Practice head(s):Nicola Lashmar

Other key lawyers:Paul Coppin; Louise Bland; Mark Milkovics

Key Clients

Anglian Water Services Limited

General Electric Insurance

Legal & General Insurance

National Grid plc

Cadent Gas Limited

Johnson Controls International plc

Forestry Commission

Halliburton Company

Natural Environment Research Council

Thames Water Utilities Limited

Turkish Airlines

Amazon

Alitalia Societa Aerea Italiana SPA

Northern Gas Networks

HSBC

McKesson

Ewals Cargo Care

Argus Insurance Company (Europe) Limited

KFC

Dyson

Manchester United

Ryanair

Work highlights

  • Acting for Anglian Water in defence of major flood claim following a serious flooding incident dating in 2015 when Kirkley Stream burst its banks following a period of extremely heavy rainfall, causing flooding to 33 properties in the vicinity.
  • Representing Union Hosteleria in defending hotel owners in a claim brought after a teenager sustained serious spinal injury as a result  of falling through the glass floor of her hotel balcony.
  • Global contract for defence of Turkish Airlines claims litigation, which involves co-ordinating claims litigation in over 60 jurisdictions.
  • Advising Argus Insurance Company in the highest value injury claim to be brought before the courts in Gibraltar.
  • Representing Legal & General’s insured, which is a large housing association, in relation to a £500,000 personal injury claim brought by one of its tenants following an accident on the insured’s premises.


Professional negligence

Index of tables

  1. Professional negligence
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Rising stars

Rising stars

  1. 1

Mills & Reeve LLP has the region's largest professional negligence practice, which is led from Norwich by partners Stephen King and Neil Davies. King has specialised in professional and medical negligence for 29 years and he leads the firm's national insurance disputes service line. Davies leads the East of England insurance practice. Principal associate Clare Howard, who also 29 years' experience in this field of law, and senior associates Matthew Wilson and Venetia Hanison are highly recommended.

Practice head(s):Stephen King; Neil Davies

Other key lawyers:Clare Howard; Matthew Wilson; Venetia Hanison

Testimonials

"Quietly sensible, very proficient and pragmatic."

Key Clients

Countrywide plc and group of companies

Canopius Managing Agents Limited

CNA Hardy

Travelers

Pen Underwriting

Collegiate Claims

Aviva Life & Pensions UK Limited

Protek Group Limited

W/R/B Underwriting

Birketts LLP has a claimant professional negligence practice that handles claims against solicitors, accountants and other professionals on behalf of clients across the UK. It also has a niche focus on negligent probate advice. Max Roessler in Norwich handles numerous claims against solicitors, the majority of which concern negligent property and transactional advice. Laurence Weeks is the lead partner in Cambridge, where senior associate Sara Sayer frequently defends defends colleges, universities and schools in actions brought against them for negligence.

Practice head(s):Max Roessler; Laurence Weeks

Other key lawyers:Sara Sayer

Testimonials

"The firm has competent and able litigators who we would expect to be proficient in professional negligence actions."

Buckles Solicitors LLP focuses predominantly on claimant professional negligence work and has a growing workload of claims against solicitors and accountants concerning estate planning and associated tax issues. Practice head James Maxey also handles claims against banks relating to the sale of swaps and derivatives, matters involving lawyers accused of negligence in litigation, and cases against architects that are referred through the firm's construction and engineering team. Associate Nick Porter  is also recommended.

Practice head(s):James Maxey

Other key lawyers:Nick Porter

Litigator Philip Lumb at Clapham & Collinge Solicitors has a broad practice encompassing commercial litigation, personal injury, property litigation and contentious trusts and probate, but professional negligence claims make up a significant part of his workload. He leads the practice from Norwich and also covers the firm's offices in North Walsham and Sheringham. Consultant Mel White, who focuses on family and education matters, also acts for clients bringing claims of negligence against solicitors in those fields of law.

Practice head(s):Philip Lumb

Other key lawyers:Mel White


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