Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon

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.
Click here for more details

United Kingdom > North > Insurance > Professional negligence > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



Index of tables

  1. Professional negligence
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next Generation Partners
  4. Rising stars

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Rising stars

  1. 1
    • Gillian Burnett - DAC Beachcroft LLP
    • Adam Dymock - Watson Burton LLP
    • Tom Thurlow - Watson Burton LLP

DAC Beachcroft LLP acts for solicitors, property professionals, financial institutions, insurance brokers and construction companies, as well as specialising in coverage disputes and policy wording. Leeds-based Suzanne Wharton leads the team that includes in the Newcastle office: Paul Davison, who acts for a number of leading insurers, advising upon a wide range of complex and high value claims and policy coverage issues; and construction specialist Stephen McLellan. Also notable is legal director Gillian Burnett, who has particular expertise in claims against solicitors, accountants, surveyors and brokers.

Practice head(s):Suzanne Wharton

Other key lawyers:Paul Davison; Stephen McLellan; Gillian Burnett


'Provide an excellent resource for professional negligence claims.'

'Paul Davison is an excellent coverage lawyer. He provides realistic succinct coverage advice.'

'Gillian Burnett has excellent attention to detail, leaving nothing unturned.'

'Stephen McLellan is very client focused and approachable to both insured and insurer clients.'

Key Clients

Zurich Professional & Financial Lines

Markel (UK) Limited

Travelers Insurance Company

International Insurance Company of Hannover SE

QBE European Operations FSM

Countrywide Plc


CNA Hardy

Manchester Underwriting Management / IGI


MS Amlin

Tokio Marine HCC

Global Risk Partners

Work highlights

  • Appointed on behalf of Markel (UK) Limited who provided advice to an Administrator around the value of outstanding WIP in contracts performed by a major utilities contractor on behalf of Thames Water.

  • Acting for a firm of tax advisors and their insurers in the defence of a £35m claim arising out of a failed property investment club.
  • Acting for an offshore law firm which was retained by a City firm and its client to act in a trusts dispute.
  • Instructed by an electrical engineering contractor to defend a claim concerning the outbreak of a fire at Gemini Retail Park in Warrington.
  • Liquidators of a precious metal company criticise client accountant's involvement in a transaction by which the company's assets and liabilities were transferred to a new entity.

Focusing on high value, complex matters, Watson Burton LLP specialises in construction-based work, particularly cladding issues. The ‘calm, organised and thorough’ construction expert Richard Palmer leads the practice, and is known for his ‘unflappable manner’, as well as ‘a strong understanding and experience in the insurance market’. His team includes Anne-Marie Knight, who has notable experience in acting for professional indemnity insurers; associate Adam Dymock, who has expertise in claims against solicitors and construction professionals; and ‘up and coming rising star’ Tom Thurlow, who is a ‘calm and methodical’ solicitor with ‘excellent client care'.

Practice head(s):Richard Palmer

Other key lawyers:Adam Dymock; Tom Thurlow; Anna-Marie Knight


'Watson Burton has commitment to its clients, to fairness and to going the extra mile, even when there is no obligation to do so.'

'An expert knowledge and ability to manage a clients expectations well, making sure the client is aware of all possible outcomes of a claim.'

'All lawyers seem more than competent and they are proactive in their approach to the legal issues.'

Key Clients

Hiscox Underwriting Limited

Travelers Insurance Company Limited

Canopius Underwriting Limited

Lucion Services Limited

AmTrust Corporate Capital Limited

CNA Hardy

Work highlights

  • Represented a construction company in a professional negligence claim arising from alleged deficiencies in the design of a gabion retaining wall at a commercial development in Cheshire.
  • Acting for a firm of solicitors and its insurers in relation to a claim arising out of negligent advice on the settlement of a Vibration White Finger claim.
  • Representing a party in the Grenfell Tower Public Inquiry
  • Successful at a preliminary issue trial in the London TCC at which the claimant was seeking an indemnity of £7 million plus costs from the design and build contractor client.
  • Acting for a mechanical and electrical engineer and their insurers, in a long-running multi-party negligence claim relating to construction of a large private residence.

Clyde & Co LLP specialises in litigation and focuses on handling high value and complex claims. The practice acts for insurers, defending claims against a range of professionals, including solicitors, barristers, accountants, financial advisers and brokers, as well as construction and healthcare professionals. Anthony Brown leads the team and has particular expertise in defending claims against solicitors and accountants.

Practice head(s):Anthony Brown


'Real specialist sector knowledge of professional negligence claims and a deep understanding of the insurer market.'

'Anthony Brown is a very strong technical lawyer whose written output is always first class.'

'Anthony Brown is an experience professional negligence lawyer who has the ability to deal with document heavy cases and distil these into commercial reporting and advice. He is also a very good policy advice lawyer.'

Specialising in claimant work, Archers Law LLP acts for local and national businesses, high-profile and high-net-worth individuals, insolvency practitioners and charitable organisations. Kenton Bazeley joined from Tilly Bailey & Irvine in 2018, and leads the team that focuses on claims against solicitors, architects, accountants, surveyors and insurance brokers.

Practice head(s):Kenton Bazeley

Interview with...

Law firm partners and practice heads explain how their firms are adapting to clients' changing needs

Interview with...

Law firm partners and practice heads explain how their firms are adapting to clients' changing needs

GC Diversity and Inclusion Report

In partnership with...

Interview with...

Law firm partners and practice heads explain how their firms are adapting to clients' changing needs

International comparative guides

Giving the in-house community greater insight to the law and regulations in different jurisdictions.

Select Practice Area

GC Diversity and Inclusion Report

In partnership with...

Press releases

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to

Legal Developments in the UK

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • Court of Justice rules on source of income for Derivative Residence applications

    On 2 October 2019, the Court of Justice delivered its judgment in Bajratari v Secretary of State for the Home Department (Directive 2004/38/EC) Case C-93/18 which concerns Chen applications and the source of funds for self-sufficiency. 
  • End of the ‘centre of life test’ in Surinder Singh cases?

    In the recent case of  ZA (Reg 9. EEA Regs; abuse of rights) Afghanistan   [2019] UKUT 281 (IAC ), the Upper Tribunal found that there is no basis in EU law for the centre of life test, as set out in Regulation 9(3)(a) of the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016 (the “Regulations”). It further found that it is not to be applied when Judges assess  Surinder Singh  cases that appear before them.
  • Terms of employment as a sole representative

    In this article we examine the working arrangements of sole representatives, looking at the terms and conditions of employment that the Home Office will expect a sole representative to have in order to qualify as a representative of an overseas business.  
  • Can Sole Representatives Be Shareholders?

    The Immigration Rules require that an applicant for a  sole representative visa  is not “a  majority shareholder in the overseas business”.
  • Immigration Skills Charge - A Guide for Employers

    As a Sponsor, you may be required to pay the Immigration Skills Charge (ISC) each time you sponsor a migrant in the  Tier 2 General  or  Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) Long-term Staff  subcategory.
  • 5 FAQS about paragraph 320(11)

    In applications for entry clearance where the applicant has a negative immigration history in the UK, the application may be refused under the general grounds for refusal, which are found in part 9 of the Immigration Rules. Where an applicant has  ‘previously contrived in a significant way to frustrate the intentions of the Immigration Rules’,  the application could be refused under paragraph 320(11). In this post we look at five frequently asked questions about paragraph 320(11). 
  • Multiple nationality and multiple citizenship (including dual nationality and dual citizenship)

    British nationality law permits multiple nationality and multiple citizenship, including dual nationality and dual citizenship.
  • Applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the Exceptional Talent or Promise Category

    The  Exceptional Talent  and Exceptional Promise categories are for individuals who are recognised leaders or emerging leaders in their field of expertise. There are a number of endorsing bodies for lots of different fields of work, including  artists and musicians ,  architects ,  digital experts ,  scientists  and  academics . While there isn’t an endorsing body for every expert, the growing list means that many individuals could enjoy the flexibility that this category has to offer. 

    Syedur Rahmanconsiders the factors that determine when civil proceedings can go ahead before,or at the same time as, criminal proceedings relating to the same circumstances.
  • Rights of appeal after the Immigration Act 2014

    The Immigration Act 2014 (“the 2014 Act”) reduced the circumstances in which the refusal of an immigration application will give rise to a right of appeal. The  explanatory notes  to the 2014 Act state that the Act was intended to restructure rights of appeal to the Immigration Tribunal. Previously, a right of appeal to the Immigration Tribunal existed against any of the 14 different immigration decisions listed in s.82 of the  Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002  (“the 2002 Act”). As explained below, whether or not the refusal of an immigration application currently generates a right of appeal depends on the subject matter of the application rather than its categorisation.

Press Releases in the UK

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to