The Legal 500


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Top-tier recommendations


London: Dispute resolution

Within Defamation and privacy, tier 4

BLM’s defamation department is led by the ‘very approachable and extremely knowledgeable' Tim Smith. The firm represents a number of well-known publications, but also provides advice to claimants, particularly medical professionals. Kirsty Howarth is described as ‘excellent'.

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Within Professional discipline, BLM is a first tier firm,

The ‘polished and impressive'BLM primarily serves clients in the healthcare sector, representing the Medical Protection Society, Vision Express and Dental Protection Ltd. The practice is led by Gary Allison in London, who is ‘a clear leader in the field'. Vicki Swanton is described as ‘assiduous and very knowledgeable'. The ‘tactically astute' Juliette Mellman-Jones‘brings an air of calm and control to proceedings', and is ‘excellent with clients'. Jane Lang, based in Cardiff, is ‘dedicated and very industrious'. In Manchester, the ‘hardworking' Clare Chapman‘abhors unfairness from the regulators and acts decisively to combat it'. Mark Shaw is described as ‘highly competent'.

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London: Human resources

Within Employment: employers and senior executives, tier 8

Department head Andrew McDonald at BLM led a successful defence for Westminster City Council against a claim for unfair dismissal following redundancy. Vanessa Latham is also recommended.

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Within Health and safety, BLM is a second tier firm,

The ‘very strong'BLM is a ‘solid performer with a good geographical spread'. A large contentious caseload is combined with a national emergency response service. The department is led by Jennette Newman, who ‘gets to the heart of the problem straight away'. Aviva and PC Harrington Contractors are clients.

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London: Insurance

Within Clinical negligence: defendant, BLM is a second tier firm,

‘A leading player in this area', BLM has a well-established relationship with the Medical Protection Society, and was the only new firm appointed to the NHSLA’s legal panel. Head of department Gary Allison is ‘a clear leader in the field'; Vicki Swanton is ‘assiduous and very knowledgeable'; and Janet McWhinney is ‘hardworking, calm and thorough'.

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Within Insurance and reinsurance litigation, tier 6

BLM ‘provides a great service for insurers', and is ‘real value for money'. Practice head Catherine Hawkins successfully acted for West London Law, in a negligence claim.

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Within Personal injury: claimant Leading individuals: personal injury (general)

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Within Personal injury: defendant, BLM is a first tier firm,

BLM has ‘in-depth knowledge of the way personal injury law is developing'. It has a strong relationship with insurers such as Aviva, and insureds such as Corporation of London and BAA Limited. Head of department Michael Pether is ‘one of the leading defendant solicitors in the field of child abuse litigation', and Jennette Newman is recommended for her catastrophic injury practice.

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Within Product liability: defendant, BLM is a third tier firm,

BLM is praised for its ‘excellent service and proactive approach', and ‘great knowledge'. Jim Sherwood is ‘a good tactician' and the recently promoted David Kidman is ‘bright' and ‘thinks ahead'. The firm is acting for Transform Medical Group in the PIP class action.

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Within Professional negligence, tier 4

Led by Caterina Yandell and Elliot Pound, the team at BLM provides ‘an exceptional level of service to clients' and gives ‘timely, thoughtful and pragmatic advice'. It defends clients in a range of sectors including legal, property, construction and finance as well as acting for local authorities, charities and trade unions. Clients include Savills, Travelers, NIG Skandia, UNISON and Aviva. Among the ‘first-rate' team, recommended individuals include Richard Wilkins, who is ‘approachable' and ‘commercially sensible'; Martin Jensen, who is ‘excellent'; the ‘knowledgeable' Michael Harvey; and Michael Salau, who is ‘excellent in construction-related matters'. Keith Lonsdale has ‘an excellent reputation', and consultant Charlotte Capstick is ‘highly regarded'.

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London: Public sector

Within Education: institutions, BLM is a third tier firm,

Elliot Pound heads the ‘excellent' team at BLM, which is active on student dispute cases. Richard Wilkins is leading on advice to the University of Leeds and a professor in defending claims of alleged breach of contract and negligence, relating to the supervision of a PhD student, and the alleged substantial psychiatric injury suffered as a result.

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Within Education: schools, BLM is a third tier firm,

The ‘excellent'BLM provides ‘well-thought-out advice'. Clients include Drayton Manor High School Academy Trust. Elliot Pound leads the team, which includes Richard Wilkins, who is particularly noted for his school admissions and exclusions advice.

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London: Real estate

Within Construction, tier 5

BLM has a team of ‘bright lawyers with the ability to take on board the detail of complex construction issues'. Michael Salau and Keith Lonsdale, who stands out for his Middle East experience, are ‘fantastic'. The firm has a strong construction professional indemnity practice, and acts for clients including Griffiths & Armour, Aviva, Arup, and Opus International Consultants.

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Within Environment, tier 5

BLM’s environment practice is ‘highly commercial' and ‘very responsive', and is noted for its experience advising insurers on contamination and pollution matters. The ‘top-notch' Michael Salau heads the team.

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London: Transport

Within Travel, BLM is a second tier firm,

Matthew Ford heads the team at BLM, which acts for acts for tour operators, travel agents, excursion providers, suppliers and insurers. Clients include Olympic Holidays, InterContinental Hotels Group, Oska Travel and Hiscox. The team’s expertise spans personal injury, employment, policy coverage and cyber matters.

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Further information on BLM

Please choose from this list to view details of what we say about BLM in other jurisdictions.


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