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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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Medical negligence: defender

Index of tables

  1. Medical negligence: defender
  2. Leading individuals

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Medical negligence: defender clients in Scotland using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


Brodies LLP acts in a wide range of claims, including ophthalmology, deaths in custody, aesthetic surgery and medical device implantation. Clients include medical institutions, equipment manufacturers and individual medical professionals. Elena Fry co-leads the practice alongside Duncan Mawby, who joined from BTO Solicitors LLP in September 2017. The firm is defending a number of class actions for suppliers of pelvic mesh and metal on metal hip implants. It also represents several insurers in cases involving insured practitioners facing complex medical negligence claims and fatal accident inquiries.

BTO Solicitors LLP’s outstanding practice defends doctors, dentists and nurses against clinical negligence claims before the Court of Session, Sheriff Courts, as well as in fatal accident inquiries and public inquiries. The firm regularly acts for the Medical Protection Society (MPS), the Medical and Dental Defence Union of Scotland (MDDUS) and the Medical Defence Union (MDU) as the principal external advisor. It is also instructed by a number of insurance companies in clinical negligence claims against insured risk. Douglas Jessiman leads the team, which includes Laura Donald and Caroline Carr. Jessiman is adept at handling complex causation cases in front of the Court of Session, and is representing a GP in relation to a claim for damages raised by a former patient who was prescribed medication, and subsequently involved in a fatal car accident. Donald defended a dentist in a claim raised by a patient concerning the administration of a dental procedure that led to bleeding issues, despite the dentist’s knowledge that the patient was on prohibitive medication; after negotiation, the parties agreed a substantially reduced settlement. Duncan Mawby joined Brodies LLP in September 2017.

Clyde & Co LLP acts for a broad spectrum of clinical professionals in negligence claims, fatal accident inquiries, inquests, internal disciplinary, regulatory and criminal proceedings, in addition to large-scale class actions. The firm is also on the panels of a number of healthcare insurers, including Hiscox, MPLC and the RSA Group, in addition to instructions from the MPS, MDDUS and MDU. The practice is led by Graeme Watson, who specialises in professional indemnity, with a focus on medical negligence work. In a major highlight, team is representing Johnson & Johnson Medical in personal injury litigation concerning pelvic mesh products. In another key mandate senior associate Duncan Batchelor represented the UK subsidiary of G4S Care & Justice Services in a class action brought by prisoners alleging breaches of their human rights as a result of being handcuffed in hospitals, successfully defending the majority of claims, in a case which is now in appeal. Other highlights included representing a consultant breast surgeon in an action alleging lack of informed consent and negligent reconstructive surgery, in a case that was defended on the grounds that the action was not raised in time.

Medical negligence: pursuer

Index of tables

  1. Medical negligence: pursuer
  2. Leading individuals

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Medical negligence: pursuer clients in Scotland using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


Anderson Strathern is ‘an impressive firm with talented solicitors’. The team represents clients pursuing claims in relation to accidents across the spectrum of clinical and dental context and has particular experience in pelvic mesh cases. The practice is co-led by experienced solicitor advocate Robert Carr and Catriona Watt who specialises in permanent injury resulting from medical negligence and fatal claims arising from accidents and clinical failures. ‘Sophisticated’ senior associate Robbie Wilson is noted for his ‘good interpersonal skills’ and his depth of knowledge across all areas of medicine.

As well as providing ‘excellent service’, Balfour+Manson LLP’s team has ‘a complete understanding of the issues’ facing clients pursuing claims arising from medical negligence and accidents. ‘Outstanding’ Elaine Motion , who leads the team, has considerable experience in representing clients bringing child birth and cerebral palsy claims, late diagnosis of breast and bowel cancer cases; as well as matters involving negligent bowel surgery and bedsore negligence. Ann Logan specialises in birth injury cases, but also has expertise in cerebral palsy, lack of informed consent and fatal claims. David McIntosh is acting for a mother whose daughter suffers from cerebral palsy as a result of a birth injury, in a complex claim seeking to secure damages to cover care costs. Julie Clark-Spence is another key practitioner with experience in pursuing claims against hospitals, GPs and other care professionals.

The ‘excellent’ team at Digby Brown LLP is noted for its considerable expertise in pursuer litigation in the medical negligence space. Practice head Sue Grant successfully represented a client in a birth injury case that led to cerebral palsy and is currently pursuing a claim for a client in relation to the failed diagnosis of a kidney cyst. Recently promoted partner Ruth Kelliher is acting in a liability claim involving complications arising from failed surgery. Associate Trish McFadden is also recommended for Court of Session litigation.

Lindsays acquired the well-established medical negligence practice from Brodies LLP in February 2017; the practice, which stands out for the ‘sensitivity’ it offers to clients pursuing medical negligence claims, is highly active in court litigation, as well as alternative dispute resolution. The practice is led by ‘impressive’ David Armstrong, who is noted for providing ‘well-organised instructions’ and the manner in which he deals with defending parties. In a recent highlight, he successfully represented a client in a complex causation case involving a patient who suffered complications following surgery, which was settled with an award of periodic payments to cover additional care costs. Jonathan Cornwell is also recommended for his medical negligence expertise.

Drummond Miller LLP handles the spectrum of medical negligence claims, including child birth injury cases, missed diagnoses, surgical accidents and GP or nursing failures, in which it has considerable experience investigating, negotiating and litigating in the Sheriff Court, Court of Session and Supreme Court. Liesa Spiller, who leads the practice, and Darren Deery are the key contacts.

Harper Macleod LLP  handles a wide variety of clinical negligence claims, including birth injuries relating to obstetric negligence, misdiagnosis and surgical error. Drawing on its pre-eminent sports practice, it also has niche expertise in negligence in the sporting context and professional sport injuries. Practice leader Elizabeth Mitchell specialises in dealing with fatal cases on behalf of family members, in addition to gynaecological cases. In one complex case, she is currently representing the partner of a man who committed suicide in hospital after being left with belts, despite being considered a suicide risk, and in another matter, is representing the family of a woman who sustained a heart attack after the hospital failed to review her ECG and sufficient action. Associate Victoria Buchanan is recommended for her expertise in orthopaedic injuries such as hip replacements, and lack of consent matters.

Jackson Boyd LLP handles medical and dental claims brought by insurers and individuals, including fatal claims, treatment error and misdiagnosis, catastrophic injury, delay in diagnosis, premature hospital discharge and birth injury claims. Debbie Milne leads the practice and has considerable experience in Court of Session litigation. She recently successfully represented the family of a man who died as a consequence of bowel obstruction, having been misdiagnosed by an out of hours GP service.

Morton Fraser acts for a variety of individuals and insurers pursuing medical and dental negligence claims, including misdiagnoses, failure to diagnose and clinical errors. Jenny Dickson leads the team in a liability claim in relation to the negligent fitting of a contraceptive coil that resulted in an unexpected pregnancy. David Hossack successfully represented a client in a claim raised against a health authority for failure to timeously diagnose and treat a suspected stroke.

Personal injury: defender

Index of tables

  1. Personal injury: defender
  2. Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Hall of Fame

  1. 1

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Personal injury: defender clients in Scotland using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


BLM’s ‘excellent’ team handles the spectrum of personal injury defence for a mixture of insurers and insured corporates, including occupational illness and disease, abuse, catastrophic injury and road traffic accident (RTA) claims. Recent work for ‘very helpful and knowledgeable’ occupational disease specialist, Andrew Gilmour, included acting for the defender, on the instruction of BAI Claims Services, in a high-value claim involving fatal silicosis; leading to the abandonment of the action due to deficiencies in liability evidence and medical causation. Gillian Rushbury acted for the defender in an employers’ liability action brought by an employee who had sustained catastrophic injuries after an accident at work, in which a significantly reduced settlement was achieved in negotiations out of court. In a complex multi-jurisdictional action, Greg MacDougall is representing the defendant in a complex fatal accident claim involving a holidaymaker who fell and sustained serious injuries whilst in Egypt. The practice is jointly headed by Karen Dance, Ian Leach and Gillian Rushbury.

BTO Solicitors LLP’s ‘justifiably well-regarded team’ is noted for its ability to handle complex and high-value personal injury claims for insurers and insured corporates with ‘peerless flexibility and good communication’. It has ‘good expertise within the catastrophic injury arena’, in addition to a well-established anti-fraud department. The ‘highly experienced and extremely professional’ Carly Forrest stands out for being ‘tenacious in defence of client interests, while recognising when a pragmatic approach is required’. Forrest was instructed by a major insurance company to represent its insured, with respect to a criminal prosecution and concurrent civil claims arising from the death of a child in a swimming pool; the insured party was prosecuted and pleaded guilty to certain health and safety breaches, whilst the civil claims were negotiated out of court, leading to a significantly reduced settlement. Catherine Currie possesses ‘a firm grip on the big picture’, and handles a mixture of RTA, employers’, public and product liability cases. The ‘technically excellent’ Garry Ferguson specialises in complex high-value and fatal injury claims. Stephen Bryceland leads the practice.

Clyde & Co LLP’s team is highly rated for its personal injury defence work, and noted for its ‘diligence, decisiveness and sensitivity’ and ability to provide ‘real value for money’ to insurers and privately insured clients. The firm handles claims across the spectrum of the practice, such as catastrophic injury, large loss, disease, as well as RTA and fraud matters. It has a number of panel appointments for major national insurers, including Axa Liability Management. Gordon Keyden and John Reid were instructed by the Motor Insurers’ Bureau in connection with a claim brought by the victim of a hit and run accident who suffered severe injuries, leading to a substantially reduced settlement after negotiations involving shared liability. Andrew Constable handled the defence of a bus company whose driver was accused of causing serious injuries to the claimant, who had stepped in front of the client’s bus; a case in which the defendant was absolved and awarded costs. Gilles Graham and the ‘technically excellent’ Calum Mathieson are also recommended. Graeme Watson leads the practice.

Brodies LLP has ‘one of the best teams on the local market’, which is led by Elena Fry, who is ‘extremely sharp, pragmatic and has a commanding presence’. The group represents self-insured businesses and public bodies in the range of personal injury claims and is on the panel for a number of major insurers operating in Scotland. The team has a strong anti-fraud offering, and regularly acts for insurers in defending against fraudulent claims. Highlights included successfully defending a Scottish Housing Association against a class action brought by tenants and former tenants in relation to a variety of neurological and psychological symptoms allegedly arising from solvent contamination from the foundations of their properties; a claim that was subsequently defended at appeal. The ‘vastly experienced’ Duncan McLean is ‘methodical and instils confidence in his ability to deal with whatever he is given’, and has a particular focus on maritime claims. Malcolm Mackay is another key practitioner; Duncan Mawby joined from BTO Solicitors LLP and Peter Demick left the team for Kennedys Scotland in September 2017, whilst Craig Watt joined the practice in March 2018 from CMS.

Burness Paull LLP’s ‘excellent’ team predominantly advises insured corporates and public sector bodies on the spectrum of personal injury claims, with a particular experience in aviation and disease work, in addition to strong sector expertise in oil and gas. The group is retained to defend a range of litigated and non-litigated public and employers’ liability claims made against Taylor Wimpey, including work-place related injury, occupier’s liability allegations and general personal injury connected to the client’s construction mandates. It is also the sole adviser to SSE and Scotia Gas Networks in connection with claims relating to industrial injuries, such as noise induced hearing loss and industrial diseases. Other notable clients include John Wood Group and Kier Group. Legal director William Cole is recommended for providing ‘very thorough preparation of cases’ and ‘very good analysis of evidence’. Ewan McIntyre leads the team.

DAC Beachcroft Scotland LLP’s team has ‘an excellent pedigree’ and stands out for its ability to ‘maintain extremely high levels of performance and service standards’. The firm is on the panels of a number of high-level insurers and acts for a number of corporate insured clients. The ‘confident, astute and sensible’ John Maillie is noted as ‘a truly top lawyer’ and possesses a wealth of experience in complex and catastrophic personal injury cases. Andrew Ireland is an ‘extremely capable solicitor advocate’ who specialises in complex casualty claims and coverage issues. Claire Newland has extensive anti-fraud expertise, and leads on the firm’s role as the sole counter-fraud provider to Aviva. Recent highlights include major RTA cases, liability investigations and fatal asbestos exposure claims. Associate Isla Taylor is also recommended.

DWF’s ‘highly regarded, competent and professional team of solicitors’ provides insurers and insured businesses with ‘incisive analysis, full and thorough advice’. The full-service defendant personal injury practice spans catastrophic injury, large loss, occupational health, industrial disease and abuse claims, in addition to a substantial counter-fraud offering. Andrew Lothian ('a safe pair of hands') leads the insurance practice, and is noted for his ‘tremendous depth of both knowledge and experience’, which he applies ‘effectively and communicates well’. ‘A clear leader in insurance litigation’, Jill Sinclair heads the firm’s counter-fraud offering. Amongst a variety of major counter-fraud operations, the group successfully represented LV= in a case following a ‘cash for crash’ scheme involving three fictitious car crashes, leading to the conviction of nine fraudulent claimants. The senior associate and ‘great counsel’, Caroline Coyne is another key practitioner, with extensive experience in high value catastrophic injury claims.

Harper Macleod LLP’s team is noted for its ability to ‘get to the heart of the issue’ and its ‘focus on what the litigation really hinges on’. Experienced litigator, Elizabeth Mitchell, leads the practice and specialises in handling high value, complex claims for major insurers.  The ‘extremely committed, knowledgeable’ Suzanne McGarrigle ‘provides clear, pragmatic advice’ and is ‘a pleasure to work with’. Heather Calderwood has vast experience in all aspects of personal injury and related claims for insurance clients and private individuals, including fatal claims, catastrophic injuries and employer liability. The group is on the panel for a number of major insurers, including Direct Line Group, Admiral Insurance and Acromas Insurance Company.

Anderson Strathern has a team of ‘very competent and capable solicitors’ and is able to ‘provide the advice and support to busy clients’ the team handles personal injury defence for a range of insured businesses, but predominantly represents insurance companies through panel appointments. It also acts for public sector bodies, including as sole provider to the Scottish Prison Service. The ‘determined litigator’ senior associate Dominic Scullion is well regarded by clients and peers alike, and stands out for providing ‘quality service’ to clients. Jonathan Guy leads the practice, has experience acting for insurers in large loss and complex claims, including catastrophic injury, fraud, disease, multiple fatality and indemnity and policy coverage claims. Senior associate Sarah Phillips is also highly rated.

CMS provides clients with ‘a good standard of measured, proportionate advice, timely correspondence with opposition lawyers and all relevant parties involved in any claim’. It has particularly strong energy sector coverage, in which it has extensive knowledge of industrial disease legislation and expertise in fatal claims. Practice head, Colin Hutton, successfully defended a major energy client against a claim raised by an employee following injuries sustained in an explosion, arguing that the employee failed to adhere to established protocols and utilise the provided safety equipment. Hutton also defended Imperial Chemical Industries against a complex cross-border action brought in the Scottish courts by the family of a former employee who died from an asbestos-related disease allegedly acquired entirely in England; leading to the dismissal of the claim on the grounds that it was time-barred. Senior associate Craig Watt left the practice for Brodies LLP in March 2018.

Kennedys Scotland combines ‘understanding of the client’s business’ with ‘good knowledge of the legal environment in Scotland’ to defend the variety of personal claims. The team was joined by ‘thorough and professional’ Peter Demick , whose focus is employers’ liability and public liability claims, in September 2017. Dual Scottish and English qualified Rory Jackson leads the team and has considerable experience in handling claims for insurers and insured corporates. Senior associate Clare Crawford is noted for providing ‘good advice and strategy’ and her ability to ‘progress cases efficiently’.

Ledingham Chalmers LLP has particular expertise in counter-fraud, catastrophic and fatal claims (including employer liability, disease, and RTA cases) in addition to defending claims against local authorities. The group is jointly led by John Chalmers, Graeme Edward (who is ‘extremely pragmatic’) and the ‘determined and tenacious’ Victoria Leslie, who has ‘a strong track record of fantastic results’. Sarah Morris has extensive public and private sector experience and recently defended Midlothian Council, via TopMark, in connection with two claims emanating from an incident in which teachers assaulted a pupil with special needs, leading to a finding that the client was not liable. Morris is defending a local authority in a stress at work claim brought by an employee.

Morton Fraser’s team has particular expertise in defending industrial disease claims for a variety of insured businesses and a number of major public sector bodies, including the Scottish and UK governments. The practice is led by the ‘particularly good’ solicitor advocate, Jenny Dickson, who is ‘highly experienced and extremely professional, organised and hard-working’. Amongst a number of mandates for the client, group is currently defending the Ministry of Defence against complex fatal claims following the death by suicide of a soldier. It is also defending a large central government department against an action brought by the family of the decease, who died as a result of lung cancer caused by occupational exposure to asbestos, in a case complicated by the fact the victim was a smoker. Senior associate, Jennifer Thomson is another key contact, and joined the team from Clyde & Co LLP in August 2017.

Weightmans LLP’s team is led by the experienced litigator, Douglas Keir, who acts for insurers, adjusters and insured businesses and specialises in defending high value motor, employer and public liability claims in both the Sheriff Court and the Court of Session. Pamela Stevenson has extensive experience defending industrial disease claims across a variety of sectors, most notably in asbestos and carpal tunnel actions. The group also represents a number of local authorities, including Glasgow City, Inverclyde, West Lothian and Fife. Seonaid Busby handles a number of RTA matters and is currently representing the accused party, on behalf of AIG, in a fatal accident inquiry into the death of a driver following a motor collision.

Personal injury: pursuer

Index of tables

  1. Personal injury: pursuer
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Personal injury: pursuer clients in Scotland using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


The ‘go-to firm’ for personal injury in Scotland, Digby Brown LLP handles a broad range of personal injury litigation, including catastrophic injuries, accidents abroad and industrial disease. Network department head Gordon Dalyell represented 13 relatives of a female car passenger killed in a road traffic collision in separate claims, 10 of which were settled extra-judicially, the remaining of which proceeded to jury trial, with claims settled for significant sums. ‘Well prepared’ and noted for getting ‘good results’, serious injury department head Chris Stewart acted for the uncle and financial guardian of a car accident victim who suffered severe brain injury following a car collision, throughout quantum investigations and a subsequent trial, leading to a settlement of £6.5m to cover the client’s care costs. Product liability expert and head of the foreign and travel department, Mark Gibson successfully represented the brother of a man who died following a fire caused by the overheating of his wheelchair motor, in a case involving complex evidential issues. Moira Kay is also recommended as ‘a leading light in brain and spinal injury cases’.

Anderson Strathern possesses ‘very competent and capable solicitors’ who are ‘able to provide and support clients who generate a significant amount of complex litigation’ – with a particular focus on catastrophic injury cases, in addition to accidents at work, fatal claims, road traffic accidents and Criminal Injury Compensation Authority claims. The healthcare, public and regulatory law team is co-led by Robert Carr and Catriona Watt, both of who have extensive experience in the personal injury field. Senior associate Gary Burton and associate Natalie McCartney are both noted as ‘resolutely committed to securing the best results for their clients’. Highlights included a complex international maritime case that involved international private law jurisdiction points and maritime regulations, and resulted in a successful claim in a Scottish court. The group also have recent experience in stress at work cases.

Balfour+Manson LLP’s ‘caring, friendly and professional’ team has significant experience in pursuing claims arising out of catastrophic road, aviation, fatal and offshore oil and gas related accidents, especially with complex causation and liability elements. The team is led by David Short, who has a strong track record in representing victims involved in sensitive major disaster claims, including multiple high profile serious air accidents. ‘Level-headed and highly organised’ David McIntosh acts for a number of claimants who have suffered catastrophic injuries in road traffic and work place accidents. Julie Clark-Spence focuses on in claims that arise out of offshore accidents and is currently representing a Polish National, who was injured whilst working on a vessel in Rotterdam, in the Court of Session, against three defenders, one of whom is domiciled in Singapore. Experienced litigators Ann Logan (who is qualified to practice in Scotland, England and Hong Kong) and Iain Nicol (who specialises in fatal claims) are also ecommended.

The ‘well established’ team at Lindsays is noted for its particular ability to handle complex claims across the personal injury practice area, with specialists in spinal injuries, accidents abroad, industrial disease and clinical negligence. In addition to litigation, the group is also well-versed in arbitration proceedings. David Armstrong leads the team and, alongside Jonathan Cornwell has ‘a stellar reputation’ amongst clients and peers alike. The group are currently representing a child who suffered multiple serious injuries following a road traffic collision, in a case that so far has led to interim damages and a claim for £15m. The group is also instructed in a number of cases involving issues of complex liability and quantum. Experienced litigators, associate Lauren Pasi and senior solicitor Sarah Donaldson stand out for possessing ‘a good attention to detail’.

Thompsons Solicitors Scotland’s ‘friendly and professional’ team stands out for only representing pursuers in relation to accident, injury and disease claims. The group has a particularly strong industrial disease practice, which covers asbestos-related and fatal-injury work, but it also has extensive experience in road traffic matters. Practice head Patrick McGuire is the key contact.

With bases in Edinburgh and Dundee, Thorntons Law LLP is ‘an excellent and highly respected firm’ in the personal injury arena. The practice is jointly head by Clare Macpherson and Gordon McBean who have extensive experience in pursuing personal injury claims and stand out for their ‘clarity and attention to detail’. ‘Determined’ Michelle Adam specialises in road traffic accidents. ‘Friendly and professional’ associate Richard Poole is also recommended.

Harper Macleod LLP offers ‘an impressive quality of care and advice’ in relation to a wide range of claims, including fatal marine accidents, traffic collisions and complex catastrophic injury matters. It also has a strong profile in industrial disease cases. Practice head Elizabeth Mitchell is representing family members, across multiple jurisdictions, of the deceased in a road traffic accident caused by dangerous driving. She is also representing a client in a claim relating to historic exposure to asbestos. {Elaine Russell} specialises in high-value road traffic accident, employers’ liability and fatal accident claims and is currently representing the family of a man who was fatally injured in a marine accident. Heather Calderwood and ‘outstanding’ associate Marina Harper are also key contacts.

Irwin Mitchell Scotland is noted for offering ‘a very good service with swift response times’ and demonstrates expertise in complex, serious injury and fatal cases. The group also has substantial experience in handling fatal asbestos and other industrial disease claims. With ‘oodles of experience’, senior associate and practice head, David Bell, stands out as ‘a sage advisor, who is willing to go the extra mile’ for clients pursuing a range of fatal and serious injury claims. He is currently represented 30 survivors and bereaved families following an outbreak of Legionnaires disease in Edinburgh through an investigation process, and is currently acting for the individuals in related civil and civil claims. Senior associate Nicola McCartney successfully represented the family of a mesothelioma victim, following their death due to negligent exposure to asbestos, resulting in a substantial award for damages. Associate Michael Callaghan is a road traffic accident specialist and has ‘a friendly, no-nonsense approach’.

Jackson Boyd LLP’s ‘enthusiastic and competent’ team, which transferred from HBJ Claim Solutions in May 2017, handles cases ‘professionally and efficiently’ across the spectrum of personal injury work. ‘Hardworking and diligent’ managing partner and practice head Alan Macdonald specialises in high-value, complex and fatal claims arising from road traffic accidents and accidents at work, and has extensive advocacy experience. He is currently acting for a motorcyclist in a major claim following injuries sustained in a collision with an approaching vehicle. ‘Extremely capable’ Debbie Milne has considerable expertise in employers’ and public liability cases. Associate Dave Berry is noted as ‘a bright, caring lawyer’.

The team at Morton Fraser draws on its expansive defender experience handle the range of road traffic, employers’ liability and public liability pursuant claims. Litigator David Hossack, who is a health and safety specialist, represented the family of a man fatally injured in an accident at work, in a major case involving loss of support and loss of society, and by his estate with respect to loss of future earnings and damages for the pain and suffering he suffered in the period between the accident and his death; and all claims were settled on favourable terms. Practice head Jenny Dickson represents a number of clients in asbestos-related claims, including many fatal cases.

Slater and Gordon handles a variety of claims, including spinal injuries, brain injuries, accidents at work, industrial disease, road traffic accidents and public liability. In addition to private client work, the group also handles personal injury work for a number of trade union clients, including the Scottish Police Federation, PCS Trade Union, Cycling UK and the FDA Trade Union. Practice head Stuart Cochran acts for the family of John Cousin, who was killed during the construction of the Queensferry Crossing, in a civil claim, having previously represented the clients at a fatal accident inquiry into the event. Karyn McPhee is recommended for her experience in disease matters.

Professional negligence

Index of tables

  1. Professional negligence
  2. Leading individuals

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Professional negligence clients in Scotland using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact


With a ‘knowledgeable, pragmatic and responsive team’, Brodies LLP is the ‘leading firm in the professional indemnity arena in Scotland’. It represents both pursuers and defenders in claims involving the range of professional disciplines, including major professional services companies in the real estate, construction, financial, employment and cyber-risk sectors, in addition to major insurer panel appointments. The team is jointly led by Alisdair Matheson and the ‘leading’ Alan Calvert, who is particularly noted for his experience in representing solicitors and accountants. Calvert represented a law firm, and its professional indemnity insurance in an £8m claim arising from the drafting of notices to quit agricultural tenancies, which were held to be invalid by the Land Court; a case that was dismissed based on a time bar following a preliminary proof. Tony Jones QC joined from BTO Solicitors LLP in June 2018.

BTO Solicitors LLP’s defender-focused professional negligence practice advises a mixture of professional indemnity and D&O insurers, covering advocates, accountants, architects, engineers, surveyors and other insured or regulated professionals. Alan Eadie leads the team and, alongside Ashley Mawby , frequently acts as an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) mediator. Eadie continues to defend a law firm against a $210m action in connection with breach of contract, negligence and breach of fiduciary duty allegations concerning a private equity investment in the claimant’s oil service company; a case which is now at the Commercial Court. He also defended a consulting engineering company against a £3.6m multi-party liability claim by the employer in a faulty construction project, which was subsequently dismissed due to a time-bar. Tony Jones QC left the firm for Brodies LLP in June 2018.

‘One of the best firms for defender clients’, Clyde & Co LLP is best known for handling claims against solicitors and counsel, although it also handles cases involving a range of professionals and their insurers, including in the construction and financial spaces. Anne Kentish, whose ‘attention to detail and preparation is second to none’, leads the team, which includes the ‘fiercely intelligent’ Graeme Watson, ‘brilliant grand strategist’ Charles McGregor, ‘seasoned and doughty negotiator’ Peter Anderson and the ‘organised and thorough’ Gavin Henderson . The group successfully defended a firm of consulting engineers in a multi-party dispute in the Court of Session, which arose from the failure of a concrete slab due to weather damage, which was dismissed due to a time bar.

CMS has ‘a leading professional negligence team in relation to all forms of construction industry claims’ and ‘a genuine familiarity with the sectors it operates in’, representing both insured parties and insurers. Dual Scots and English qualified Harriet Munro leads the practice hand has broad experience handling construction disputes, in addition to D&O claims and defending insurance brokers accountants and media professionals. Graeme MacLeod specialises in solicitor negligence and financial services cases. Shona Frame focuses on construction disputes and has handled a number of professional negligence claims arising from PFI projects. In a high-profile  case at the Supreme Court, McLeod is acting for the insurers of the defunct law firm, Bell & Scott LLP, and one of its former partners, Jane Steel, who was accused of fraudulently misrepresenting, to Northern Rock, information pertaining a loan – a case that was initially dismissed, but was appealed in November 2017.

In addition to coverage of a wide spectrum of professions, DWF has particular expertise in solicitor negligence claims, and represents both insurers and insured firms via the Law Society of Scotland’s professional indemnity master policy panel. ‘Simply one of the best solicitors working in this field in Scotland’, Alison Grant leads the practice and handles a number of high value and complex professional negligence claims against solicitors and advocates. Legal director Lindsay Ogunyemi is ‘very responsive and happy to go the extra mile’, and represents a variety of insurers in connection with claims involving professionals including surveyors, architects, insurance brokers and accountants and regularly advises on complicated coverage issues.

Harper Macleod LLP’s ‘consistently good’ team predominantly acts for individual and corporate claimants pursuing professional negligence claims against banking and financial services, accountancy, surveyor, legal, construction and healthcare professionals. Following the retirement of Rod McKenzie in November 2017, the practice is led by Sandy Hastie who, alongside David Kerr, is noted as ‘very able’ and having ‘impeccable commercial judgement’. Kerr is representing the Shetland Islands Council in a £4.5m construction claim in the Court of Session for professional negligence against the principal contractor and subcontracted engineers who developed the client’s headquarters in Lerwick, which had significant structural problems. Fiona Pask is representing AIB Group in a £2m action against a firm of quantity surveyors who were appointed to act as the client’s project managers in connection with a hotel redevelopment and are alleged to have certified payments to a contractor for works which had not been carried out.

Shepherd and Wedderburn is active in the full range of professional negligence matters for defenders and pursuers, with particular expertise in professional indemnity matters pertaining to accountancy. John MacKenzie represented Ernst & Young as the pursuer against KPMG, the auditor responsible for signing off the accounts of three offshore companies of which the client was the liquidator, in relation to a major suspected fraud in the Isle of Man – a claim that was settled at mediation. The team is led by Alastair Frood, who is an experienced commercial litigator. Iain Drummond specialises in professional indemnity matters arising out of the construction and engineering sectors, and has extensive experience as a mediator. Barbara Bolton is qualified in Scotland, England and New York, and handles a number of complex, cross-border professional negligence claims.

Balfour+Manson LLP is regarded as ‘a safe pair of hands’ and provides an ‘efficient service’ with respect to solicitor negligence cases in negotiations, mediation and litigation. The firm predominantly represents claimants in matters pertaining to the administration of trusts, executries and contentious disputes arising out of litigation, in addition to property-related matters. David Flint leads the team, which includes Gordon Deane and Elaine Motion , both of whom are noted for possessing extensive experience in the area of professional negligence. The group currently represented a US citizen in relation to a potential claim against their accountants for providing wrong advice regarding tax returns for a period of 13 years. Iain Nicol is another key contact.

BLM  acts for a wide range of insurers, brokers, underwriters and reinsurers as well as a number of corporate clients on the defence side, across the spectrum of professional industries. The practice is co-led by flood litigation specialist, David Taylor, and Grant Maclean, who is noted for his ‘long experience, approachability and comprehensive grasp of the issues’. Frank Hughes has extensive experience in solicitor negligence cases, in which he has also acted as an expert witness. Recent highlights include defending an Edinburgh-based chartered accountancy firm in relation to advice it gave to an offshore trust, and a number of cases in relation to allegedly negligent over-valuations by surveyors and other construction professionals.

Burness Paull LLP provides ‘a very high level of service’, predominantly representing claimants. The cross-discipline liabilities practice is led by Ewan McIntyre, whose primary focus is solicitor negligence cases. McIntyre represents Millar & Bryce in connection with numerous claims concerning different transactions. The ‘knowledgeable’ Chris MacKay advised Fife Council in a professional negligence claim against Atkins in relation to professional failures in the design, contract administration and project management of a flood prevention scheme, and in separate proceedings against the council’s former solicitors. The ‘astute and dedicated’ Fenella Mason is also recommended alongside Richard Farndale and Andrew Little, both of whom are ‘hardworking and dedicated’.

DAC Beachcroft Scotland LLP’s ‘competent’ team handles professional claims for clients across a wide spectrum of professions and acts for a number of UK professional indemnity insurers. The practice is led by legal director Beverley Atkinson, who is dual Scots and English qualified. The group defended a firm of structural engineers, via Zurich, against a £1.75m claim pertaining to a failed hotel piping system which caused damage to the building; a case that was resolved through ADR. In another highlight, it represented a firm of surveyors in three separate actions raised by a commercial lender, each alleging negligence over the valuation of property, achieving a settlement on all claims on a global basis, with a significant discount.

Dentons' department possesses ‘a depth of knowledge that is difficult to replicate’, and represents a mixture of both claimants and defenders, with particular expertise in claims in the financial services. Its clients include major insurers, including Zurich and Aviva, in addition to individuals and insured businesses. The practice is led by Tim Edward, who is ‘an astute litigator, with a keen grasp of the strategic issues’. ‘Excellent’ senior associate Bruce McCombie predominately represents professionals defending claims of negligence. In a recent highlight, the group successfully defended Pagan Osborne against a claim raised by a former customer in relation to its role in the executory of her late husband’s estate, leading to a full discharge of all claims. It is currently acting for Charles Taylor Insurance Services in defending a claim by liquidators of AGRPA for allegedly negligent advice on a Portfolio Solutions Bond sold under its name.

The team at TLT primarily focuses on professional negligence work arising from the financial services sector; pursuing a range of claims raised by banks and lenders against a variety of professionals. ‘Very able’ John Paul Sheridan leads the practice and employs ‘consistently good commercial judgement and works extremely hard in his clients’ interests’. Sheridan is supported by Karen Cornwell , who has ‘developed an impressive expertise in the professional negligence space’. The group is currently engaged by an international food processing business in two parallel proceedings against a construction company and electrical contractors employed to reconstruct a factory following a fire, and negligently installed a power supply.

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