Ashtons Legal is 'the leading firm in East Anglia for clinical negligence', according to one client who describes 'a first-class service in complex cases of maximum severity'. In Bury St Edmunds, 'highly experienced and effective' medical negligence practice head Sandra Patton and key partners Sharon Allison and Tom Cook handle clinical negligence. For personal injury, the firm has a 50-lawyer team handling multi-track and fast-track cases. Hannah Clarke, Michael Wangermann and Ipswich-based injury services practice head Richard Foyster are standout practitioners. Senior associates Mick Upton and Siobhan Thacker, and Norwich-based associate Ben Ward are also recommended.
Personal injury and clinical negligence: claimant in East Anglia
‘Quite simply the number one firm for claimant clinical negligence in East Anglia.‘
‘They handle a variety of cases across the complete range of medical areas and value, from tricky lower-value cases to catastrophic multimillion-pound ones.‘
‘The team has real strength in depth; they have a very talented crop of associates and junior lawyers in particular.‘
‘Ben Ward deserves his “Rising Star” ranking. He is charming and effective, and brings a really thorough and accomplished approach to his cases.‘
‘Kate Smith is a star of the future; she works hard and skilfully to secure great results for her clients.‘
‘Julie Crossley is an assured presence, who deals well with clients in sensitive cases.‘
‘Mandy Cavanagh is a force of nature – she brings tremendous energy and passion to her cases.‘
‘Ben Ward is excellent – he really prepares cases very well and is on top of the game. He asks for help when appropriate. He is a very good lawyer. The firm is good – they have a good team and I trust them to do the right thing.‘
‘The leading firm in East Anglia for clinical negligence. An excellent well established firm providing a first-class service in the full range of clinical negligence cases including highly complex cases of maximum severity. They thoroughly deserve their excellent reputation and leading position in this field.‘
‘Sandra Patton is highly experienced and effective in cases of the greatest complexity. She is indefatigable and achieves truly excellent results for her clients. First-class. Ben Ward is also very impressive.‘
- Successfully handled a mesothelioma claim; the claim was defended fiercely despite the deceased working as a qualified sheet metal worker between 1963/64 – 1993/94 who was required to cut through corrugated asbestos roof sheets to fit ducts. Six weeks before trial the defendant made a Part 36 offer of £225,000 gross.
- Settled an asbestos-related mesothelioma case involving secondary exposure; the claimant’s husband was exposed to asbestos during the course of his employment as a maintenance man/caretaker for the London Borough of Barking & Dagenham at the old Adult College on Fanshawe Crescent Dagenham.
- Handling an asbestos-related disease case involving both an employers’ liability and a public liability claim. The client was exposed to asbestos during the course of her work, due to working close to asbestos-lagged pipes in corridors at a hospital.
Barr Ellison LLP has one of the region's leading catastrophic personal injury practices, with one client remarking that 'this is a bespoke personal injury team that is extremely skilled'. It has a dedicated office within Addenbrooke’s Hospital for contact with clients and their families, as well as its main office in Cambridge. The 'reliable and caring' Emma Truin, who is the head of personal injury and the firm's managing partner, is 'absolutely outstanding - the level of empathy and support she offers is truly impressive'. Associates Daryl Robinson (who is 'a fantastic lawyer and human being') and Mark Copley are highly recommended.
‘The work seems to be good and thorough. They work hard and provide good instructions. Emma Truin is reliable and caring.‘
‘Our legal case lasted for three years and the staff at Barr Ellison always treated us with kindness and compassion and were very supportive throughout our whole journey. As I was attending Addenbrookes hospital daily, I called into Barr Elison to see if they could help me and they took over our claim with excellent results.‘
‘Daryl Robinson was the legal executive who dealt with our case. He was always very professional, efficient and helped enormously with all our complex needs. A care package was put into place by case manager Jill Fraser who was assigned by Daryl. He also made sure we had a full team of experts to help with recovery including a neuropsychologist, support worker, occupational therapist, physiotherapist and speech therapist. I will always be extremely grateful to Daryl for all his help with our case as I am sure my husband would not be as well as he is today without all the hard work and effort he put in for us.‘
‘Daryl Robinson is my contact at this firm. He deals with injuries of the utmost severity and is extremely experienced and knowledgeable in running these cases successfully. Daryl is a fantastic lawyer and human being when it comes to dealing with clients and opponents.‘
‘This is a bespoke personal injury team that is extremely skilled. Unlike other firms, the file does not get passed around and this enables a truly personal service from start to finish.‘
‘Emma Truin absolutely outstanding. Emma is highly knowledgeable but has always retained her ability to really consider every client as an individual. The level of empathy and support she offers is truly impressive.‘
‘The team at Barr Ellison is easy to reach and personable, and I feel they have a warmth and a strong culture which is supportive whilst maintaining integrity.‘
‘I have worked with Emma Truin on a number of different clients and find her supportive and adaptable. She is able to see the big picture and make strong and tough decisions where this is required. She always achieves this with a calm and comfortable supportive tone which provides her clients with confidence and security.‘
‘I have worked with Lucy Spraggons on a number of occasions and she is very supportive, organised and efficient in her role.‘
‘At an extremely stressful time we found this firm friendly and reassuring and at every step provided us with relevant information and guidance. I would have no hesitation in recommending them to others in need of advice and assistance.‘
‘Emma Truin of Barr Ellison has the ability to make us feel at ease and responds in a manner that we can easily understand. She has shown that she is sympathetic and friendly and has a natural and sincere approach.‘
‘Daryl Robinson in Cambridge is a seasoned campaigner who provides a well resourced and dedicated service to his claimant clients. He is very approachable and friendly and he is able to attract exceptionally good work given the location of one of their offices within Addenbrooke’s hospital itself. Work is ordinarily of the upmost severity with the benefit of working in Cambridge rather than central London. Thus, it is a regional firm with London-quality work.‘
‘Daryl Robinson is approachable and dedicated. A very well-rounded personal injury litigator who is easygoing with clients but strong and determined with defendant insurers.‘
‘The office of the practice is in Addenbrooke’s Hospital, so I made contact with them on my second admission day prior my operation, which was required due to accident. My representative Daryl Robinson visited me on the ward in a very calm and gentle manner which was very reassuring and gave me the strength to make it.‘
‘An individual and professional approach. The firm has knowledge and years of experience in dealing with cases such as mine. An uninsured driver caused an accident, causing me personal damage with long-term sick leave and future sequelae.‘
‘This is an impressive firm that undertakes PI work of utmost seriousness, punching far above its weight. The standout individual is Daryl Robinson who works extremely hard to deliver the best and most just results for his clients. The claimants, usually grievously injured, and their families have absolute trust in Daryl’s tenacity and good sense. He will never let them down.‘
‘The team consists of individuals who are passionate and work hard for their clients.‘
‘The team at Barr Ellison is great to work alongside. They understand the client group that they work with – you’d think that this is a given, but can be something that is lost on other firms – but they remain approachable and supportive on a human level. Multiple clients of mine have been represented by the firm and they always talk highly of the service that they have received. Knowing that they are in safe hands is one less thing for them and for me to worry about!‘
‘I’ve worked with a number of members of the Barr Ellison team but specific mention must go to Emma Truin and Daryl Robinson who I have had the good fortune to work with on a number of cases. Both Emma and Daryl approach their cases with the utmost professionalism whilst maintaining a level of approachability that my clients really value. Emma and Daryl will always do their best to support the clinical/treating team and are always welcome additions to MDT meetings where their experience from a legal perspective is always informative and constructive. If I found myself in the position that some of our shared clients have found themselves in, I’d want Emma and Daryl representing me in my claim.‘
‘This is a boutique catastrophic personal injury firm in East Anglia with some high quality practitioners. Their office at Addenbroooke’s Hospital – the major trauma centre for East Anglia – sets them apart from other firms in providing those treated for catastrophic injuries at the hospital, and their families, with high-quality advice. Their links to the hospital also allow them to forge close relationships with the medical staff and get the best medical input.‘
‘Daryl Robinson is excellent. He has a superb manner with clients: calm, reassuring and always focused. He deals with the highest value catastrophic claims and brings complete professionalism and commitment to his work.‘
‘Mark Copley is also a very impressive practitioner. He takes a collaborative approach to his cases and yields very good results.‘
Cambridge is a key centre of the national personal injury and clinical negligence practices of Irwin Mitchell, which has offices across the country. The firm has a pre-eminent reputation for serious brain, spinal, amputee and other complex injuries, as well as having niche expertise in armed forces and asbestos disease cases. Neil Whiteley and Guy Forster are the practice heads. Head of serious injury Ruth Booy and Ministry of Defence claims specialist Simon Harrington are highly recommended. Sarah Wealleans, Gurpreet Lalli, Alexander Davenport, Samantha Shaw and Sophie Bales are a few of the firm's highly regarded associates in the region.
Other key lawyers:
‘This is one of my favourite teams that I enjoy working with. The whole team is a pleasure to work with. They have good cases. Their Letters of Instruction are detailed and are really good in telling one what they want from me.‘
‘I have worked with Guy Forster for many years now. Guy understands the medicine and gives clear and precise instructions so one knows what is required on each case. Guy puts his clients at the centre of his work and leads his team exceptionally well. He is an excellent role model to his team.‘
‘An excellent team throughout without exception, providing efficient, polite and rapid responses.‘
‘The team is uber-professional – quick and efficient in all areas. Irwin Mitchell stands out from the crowd.‘
‘My experience of this team is in personal injury claims involving members of the HM armed forces. This team has very in-depth knowledge of the military and that, married with an expert understanding of personal injury law, results in me, as counsel, being given extremely helpful instructions, as well as assistance during conference.‘
‘I work predominately with Alexander Davenport and have done so for a couple of years. He is head and shoulders above his competitors in his fine-grain understanding of the military and PI law. He is professional, rigorous and empathetic; he is quick to establish a bond of trust with his clients who appreciate his frank advice delivered sensitively.‘
‘The team has, I think, a strong supportive approach. The team has both medical and legal experience and extensive contacts with experts and counsel. There is usually “hands-on” partner involvement in all cases. From my perspective, the team provides an excellent and highly personal service. Instructions are always well prepared and the documentation carefully collated, sorted and presented.‘
‘The team has good experience and expertise of the underlying medical issues. Without exception, those with whom I have regular contact have outstanding people skills and are very conscientiousness. Hand in hand with this is an insistence on high standards from me as counsel and from all the experts instructed on the client’s behalf. Clients also get early sensible advice. If the claim has no merit or the prospects of success are remote the client is told that at the outset. Again this is not always the case with other firms.‘
‘Guy Forster sets the tone for the team. He is an excellent solicitor and is totally committed to his clients. Clients routinely comment to me on his warmth and dedication. I sense that they feel he understands and supports them. He works incredibly hard and I have been very impressed by his attention to detail in a number of cases. He is firm in negotiations but his excellent client care skills do not prevent him giving difficult advice when it is necessary.‘
‘I was extremely impressed by Guy Forster’s handling of one particularly difficult client who, although very disappointed, nevertheless respected the advice she was given by him. He is intelligent, enthusiastic and able. Despite his responsibilities as head of the team, he has a large and loyal client following. This is reflected in the sources of his new work which include recommendations from counsel, other solicitors, AvMA and former clients.‘
‘I rate Sarah Wealleans very highly. She is sympathetic with clients and tough with opponents. I respect her judgement and have taken on cases with her which I would have declined from a solicitor in whom I had less trust. She is a good and determined negotiator often taking on and succeeding with claims which other solicitors have refused. She has first class client care skills and many of her clients are clearly devoted to her. She is patient with demanding clients but importantly does not shy away from doing or saying difficult things. Being caring and honest also helps her retain the confidence of her clients.‘
‘The military PI team in the Cambridge office is one of the best in the country, with a great depth of knowledge and insight into military life, training, kit, equipment and operations which helps the efficient and effective running of a military PI case. They are also extremely good at the tactical side of the litigation. They do a great job for their clients.‘
‘The clinical negligence team at the Cambridge office is extremely good and has a great breadth of experience. They are used to handling the most complex of cases and those of the highest value and in every case ensure that the client is at the centre and is well looked after. I would say that this is the best clinical negligence team in the region.‘
‘Simon Harrington knows more about military injuries and life than most solicitors in this area in the country. He is extremely knowledgeable, very impressive and great tactically. Clients love him. Alex Davenport is another very knowledgable solicitor in this area who runs complex cases and puts clients at ease.‘
‘Guy Forster is extremely experienced, able and approachable. He manages the most complex and high-value clinical negligence cases.‘
‘Sarah Wealleans is an up-and-coming associate solicitor with a fabulous beside manner. She is one to watch.‘
‘Gurpreet Lalli is a new associate who already manages complex cases with ease. Impressive.‘
‘Irwin Mitchell is a national player in personal injury and clinical negligence. The Cambridge team has developed strongly in recent years and is now a field leader in the region. The clinical negligence team is led brilliantly by Guy Forster, who is a star on the national stage. Guy has built a strong team of excellent lawyers who manage to combine empathy for their client with consummate skill in dealing with opponents and experts.‘
‘Guy Forster is the star of the show. He makes himself available for his team at any time, and seems to have detailed knowledge of every case in the office. He is feared and respected by opponents, and loved by his clients. An absolutely terrific all-rounder in any sort of serious clinical negligence claim.‘
‘Gurpreet Lalli is a recently appointed associate who takes immense care and consideration for her clients and makes very good decisions.‘
‘Amie Minns is a rising star.‘
‘Sophie Bales is our main solicitor and she is a very caring person, sensitive to our difficult situation, and she has always come to us whether at home or in hospital. She is easy to reach and communicate with. Others who have been helpful are Sean Attwood, solicitor, who also visited us at home.‘
‘Irwin Mitchell in Cambridge offers the status, resources and excellent personnel of a nationwide firm but in a local context. They still conduct work of the highest quality yet practitioners have the benefit of living locally in beautiful Cambridge. The team has strength in depth with the benefit of seasoned partners providing leadership and assistance.‘
‘Ruth Booy is an excellent steady hand in the personal injury team. Well used to conducting high value and complex cases, Ruth is unrelenting in her desire to achieve an excellent outcome for her clients.‘
‘Justina Molloy has worked closely with Ruth Booy and different firms over a number of years. She shares Ruth’s tenacity to achieve maximum damages for her injured clients.‘
‘The PI and clinical negligence teams are both highly committed and expert in their respective areas of the law. I am instructed by both and the quality of the instructions is commendable and well informed. Both teams are highly committed to the clients and are sensitive but firm in handling the expectations of badly injured and so vulnerable people. They regularly undertake high-value work and the fact that IM has established itself in East Anglia so quickly is testament to its high quality.‘
‘I deal with the Cambridge office, with Simon Harrington, Alex Davenport, Patrick Nelly and Ben Nicholls. I have seen them at work with clients first hand and they provide a personalised and ethical service. They are always on top of things and their logistics are impressive. They always keep me informed of the progress of the cases.‘
‘Totally professional and reassuring in dealing with my personal injury claim.‘
‘Being kept informed and guided every step of the way, answering any queries I may have in a concise and informative manner.‘
‘Excellent teamwork, a focused approach and reliable application delivering results. I have nothing but admiration for this practice.‘
The team at Slater and Gordon is 'highly professional and absolutely determined to fight for the client, even in the most difficult cases', remarks counsel. The firm handles complex injury cases and is accredited by the Child Brain Injury Trust, Headway and The Spinal Injuries Association. The national practice is led from London but brain and spinal injury specialist Paul Tapner, military claims expert Richard Gaffney and child and adult brain injury specialist Angela Beric are the principal lawyers in Cambridge and leading practitioners in their field. Associate Crystal Eaton is recommended for catastrophic brain and other serious injury matters and fatal cases.
‘I have been regularly instructed by this firm in a range of personal injury cases and have always found them to be highly professional and absolutely determined to fight for the client even in the most difficult cases. In my experience their ability for penetrating legal analysis and attention to detail are what account for a high rate of success they achieve for their clients. They are also the nicest and friendliest team to work for.‘
‘Crystal Eaton, Paul Tapner and Richard Gaffney are the people I work with most often. Andrew and Crystal are the nicest people I know, always showing a great deal of patience with the most difficult clients and yet able to stand up to any opponent, however unreasonable. Paul on the other hand just has the magic touch and a determined belief that any case can be won provided one applies oneself enough to it. I admire them all for their devotion to their clients’ cause and competence.’
‘Solicitors make strenuous efforts to help clients beyond what is strictly necessary to conduct the claim. Senior fee-earners have great experience and are truly specialist in the field.‘
‘They have devotion to their clients without losing the objectivity, which is essential to give good advice as to the strengths and weaknesses of their claims. They show diligence in conducting the case.‘
‘I appreciate the level of engagement of partners throughout the process. The communication with the client, partner and counsel shows a properly collaborative approach. Some other large claimant firms have really pulled back on the use of partners and focus reliance on associates and even paralegals, often in high-value claims. This office does not. The partner not only knows what is going on but has an active engagement with the client and counsel. This is getting, sadly, rarer to find.‘
‘Richard Gaffney remains at the top of his game. He has a comprehensive knowledge of the personal injury sector. He installs complete confidence in clients that he is fighting their corner and has their best interests at heart. If I suffered serious injury he would be my first choice!‘
‘It is a highly specialised branch of Slater and Gordon. The lawyers are hardworking, caring and efficient.‘
‘Paul Tapner is highly experienced, tactically astute and very focused.‘
‘Angela Beric is extremely conscientious and combines empathy for her clients with a steely resolve.‘
‘Slater and Gordon is very responsive and communicates well with clients, families and other professionals. They have strong professional knowledge and experience in the personal injury and clinical negligence sector.‘
‘Richard Gaffney responds promptly to emails and phone calls in respect of my client. He is clear and consistent with his advice and clearly knowledgeable.‘
‘The team has always listened to my view, used my evidence when the case looked in jeopardy and built on it, engaged the correct experts and found local residents to build more solid evidence. And when they thought the case was strong enough they split proceedings and went to court without waiting to get medical advice. The barrister presented the evidence well and ultimately the judge ruled in my favour, despite me believing that the chance for success was slightly balanced against me.‘
‘Crystal Eaton took on the case. She believed in me and has been very supportive. Throughout the case, despite going quiet for a while, the communication has been great and ultimately has provided me with some closure even though the medical side has not been settled yet.‘
‘The Cambridge office of S&G is, in my opinion, the best. That office is well run and managed. The solicitors are competent and hardworking.‘
‘Richard Gaffney is intelligent, efficient and has good experience of serious personal injury litigation. He is a safe pair of hands. Crystal Eaton is also very efficient and hardworking.‘
- Acted on behalf of a few months old baby who was in a pram being pushed by his mother across a zebra crossing when the pram was struck by a car causing catastrophic brain injury. The claim settled for a £5m lump sum plus periodical payments.
- Represented a client who was on holiday and tripped when walking along a breakwater on some loose cabling, causing a comminuted fracture of the ankle which required surgery to fix. The case settled for a seven-figure sum.
- Acted for a client who sustained a catastrophic bleed to the brain during a rugby match. The rugby club had not followed the concussion protocol following a previous head injury. There are also potential claims against the NHS as they saw him in A and E twice after the previous injury and did not scan him.
The Cambridge office of Tees Law has a strong clinical negligence team that grew in 2019 through a merger with niche firm Scrivenger Seabrook. Janine Collier, who is in charge of the medical negligence and personal injury practices and is a longstanding member of the AvMA and Law Society Clinical Negligence panels, has leading practitioners in consultant Vicki Seabrook and Tim Deeming. Senior associate Adam Copeland is also recommended. Their work encompasses adult brain injury, amputations, delays in cancer diagnosis, child brain injury, fatalities, gynaecology and fertility cases, plastic surgery and much more.
‘They have experience over many years in the field.‘
‘Vicki Seabrook is an outstanding individual with decades of experience running the toughest medical litigation.‘
‘Tim Deeming has been outstanding for me. This has been a very personal, emotional and challenging event for me. I know that Tees are a business, but I’ve only ever felt like an individual; one who matters, one who deserves fair treatment.‘
‘Tim Deeming is supportive, friendly, knowledgeable, willing and comforting. I feel protected in his care.‘
‘The personal touch is what sets Tees apart. We have always felt very connected and well informed. Even when our case is going through long periods of inactivity we’ve been sent updates just to let us know they are still working behind the scenes and giving us the chance to ask questions.‘
‘The communication has been fantastic throughout and we really feel like they are doing their best to support our son’s case.‘
‘Janine Collier has been amazing to work with. She is always quick to respond to queries, always takes time to make sure we fully understand the process and supports us to make decisions, i.e. switching from Legal Aid to no-win no-fee, with well reasoned and researched information to support us.‘
‘Rachel Benton has also been extremely helpful and supportive through our case and we feel like both Janine Collier and Rachel are doing everything they can to move our case forward.‘
‘Janine Collier shows dedication to ensuring access to the highest level of experts on medical negligence cases. There is excellent consistent communication with experts throughout a lengthy case, creating a supportive working atmosphere and ensuring long-term engagement of expert. She has a very intelligent and insightful approach to learning from experts, enabling sharing of detailed specialist information and findings with confidence, and she is excellent in multi-professional meetings with solicitors and barristers, enhancing communication in exceptionally complex cases; very high level of sensitivity demonstrated towards the needs of client throughout the case, consistently focusing on the multifactorial needs of the client, over and above the monetary compensation.‘
‘It has always been a rewarding experience working with Janine Collier and I would commend her very highly to lead on medical negligence cases.‘
‘A very dedicated small team with a lot of clinical negligence expertise who do an excellent job.‘
‘Janine Collier is a really good solicitor, she really understands the medicine in clinical negligence cases and works well with the team, the clients and the experts to get excellent results in difficult cases.‘
‘Tees Cambridge has an excellent clinical negligence team with a good depth and range of fee-earners. They focus on drilling into all relevant aspects of liability at an early stage, resulting in a well-prepared case moving forwards, and this analytical and industrious approach also applies to the gathering of quantum evidence. They are extremely personable, and this is apparent with clients, experts, as well as for counsel.‘
‘Janine Collier is exceptionally good at analysis, organisation and strategy. Adam Copeland is an effective clinical negligence lawyer with a diverse caseload.‘
‘A very strong team ethos. This is a well-led team with clear direction, support and encouragement from the head of department. Strong directional leadership is not apparent in every firm. Each member of the department is passionately committed to this work and there is an approachable, friendly and collegiate atmosphere. It is not uncommon for lawyers specialising in CN work to be committed but the collegiate and friendly approach to other team members is not always apparent. Cohesion is probably what sets this team apart from other firms.‘
‘The clinical negligence department goes the extra mile for its clients. They are a community minded team that do a lot of extra-curricular for a wide range of charities from local hospices to patient safety charities and this gives them a strong regional presence.‘
‘Janine Collier, head of department, is a perspicacious and very able lawyer, certainly one of the best in the region and beyond, who believes in her team and in the work she does. A genuinely nice person who sees it as her clients’ right and her duty to achieve the best possible outcome for them. Janine delivers this time after time. She is an extremely intelligent and intuitive lawyer who has a genuine understanding of the difficulties and fears clients experience when living with an avoidable injury.‘
- Secured £45,000 for a delay in diagnosis and treatment of Giant Cell Arteritis by four GPs over a six-month period.
- Secured £110,000 for a delay in diagnosis of a thumb fracture which had a significant impact on the client’s occupation as a professional musician and their pre-existing disability.
- Representing a client in a multimillion-pound claim against a local NHS Trust. As a result of the defendant’s admitted negligence, the client was born extremely prematurely and suffers significant neurocognitive deficits.
Buckles Solicitors LLP in Peterborough has a longstanding reputation for personal injury claimant work and is now expanding its practice to include a growing volume of clinical negligence claims. 'They put you at ease and nothing is ever too much for them,' says a client of practice head Roger Clarke, who has more than 30 years' experience in this field of law, and associate Martin Herson, who is an experienced litigator and advocate with more than 25 years' experience in both PI and clinical negligence work.
Other key lawyers:
‘We appreciate the communication, the attitude, the presentation, the one-to-one knowledge and the firm’s presence.’
‘Clients feel comfortable. They put you at ease and nothing is ever too much for them. For three years, Martin Herson was always there for me and he was rock solid all the way through.’
- Advised a client in relation to a high-value clinical negligence claim against NHS Trust for failing to diagnose early-stage brain tumour.
- Advised a client in relation to failure to diagnose high-risk rectal polyp that resulted in cancer and significant surgical resection.
- Advising a client in an ongoing high-value personal injury claim for multiple life changing injuries.
'This team takes on highly complex injury cases without losing sight of the welfare of the individual claimant,' remarks a client of Ellisons Solicitors. Led by partner Robert Gair, who has 'a practical approach and is a humane point of contact for clients throughout the litigation process', the practice handles a diverse range of claims encompassing fatal accidents, acquired brain injury, industrial disease, road traffic accidents, work place accidents, public liability, occupiers' liability, bystander/nervous shock matters and psychiatric claims.
‘This team takes on highly complex injury cases involving multiple experts without losing sight of the welfare of the individual claimant.‘
‘Robert Gair stands out. As well as bringing a practical approach to litiagtion, he maintains a humane point of contact for clients throughout the litigation process.‘
‘I work only for one partner, Robert Gair. He is an extremely experienced head injury practitioner. The quality of his work is of the highest standard. I consider him to be amongst the top three or four personal injury practitioners in East Anglia. I work for most of them.‘
‘Robert Gair is conscientious with an intimate and up-to-date knowledge of the law and the medicine in his chosen practice area of brain injury. He balances tenacity with good judgement. His clients adore him and trust his every move.‘
The Norwich office of Fosters serves as the hub for a clinical negligence and personal injury practice that delivers services through a network of offices in Norfolk and Suffolk. Stephen Green's handles RTA, occupier’s liability, employer’s liability, product liability, occupational stress, criminal injuries and fatality claims ranging in value from below £10,000 fast-track matters to complex, seven-figure multi-track claims. Associate and deputy department head Barry Grogan and associate David Gabell are highly regarded. Legal executive Marianne Harrington joined from Tees Law.
‘They are very thorough and forensic in their approach and the quality of their instructions and records is excellent.‘
‘David Gabell is delightful to work with. He understands my work sometimes does not allow immediate response to queries but is pleasant enough for me to produce reports as soon as I can.‘
‘They don’t just do volume work. They give individual care and attention to each client as an individual.‘
‘Barry Grogan in particular is fantastic. Clients love him because he listens to them and explains issues clearly and succinctly.‘
‘They are very quick and smooth in handling of all communications. David Gabell was excellent – great communication, very understanding of a sensitive medical issue. He kept me informed at every stage.‘
‘An excellent team – organised, clear, approachable and thorough.‘
‘The standout individuals are Stephen Green, Lynn Satchella and Barry Grogan. They are a cut above the other solicitors that I deal with on a regular basis.‘
‘A very client-focused practice, concentrating on the East of England, deploying good local knowledge and experience. The small but growing team is close-knit and is good at pooling information and knowhow.‘
‘David Gabell I have worked with over a number of years, including at his previous firm in Cambridge. I understand he was brought to Fosters to invigorate and expand their clinical negligence offering. David has always shown a high degree of professionalism as well as empathy for the client, resulting in a determination to get the best results possible.‘
‘I have worked with Marianne Harrington on a few cases. She is highly professional and organised as well as having a good instinct for the weakness in the other side’s argument.‘
‘The Fosters personal injury and clinical negligence team provides an outstanding service. They are conscientious, hardworking and very sensitive in dealing with clients who are often vulnerable, and they provide excellent, detailed instructions to counsel. Working with them is a true pleasure. They achieve outstanding results in even the most difficult cases.‘
‘Marianne Harrington is a true rising star in the field of representing individuals and families. To say that she goes the extra mile would be an understatement – the care with which she prepares cases and manages the needs of her clients is something special. She turns difficult cases into comprehensive victories.‘
‘David Gabell is a truly outstanding lawyer. He handles each client with great care, engages in full with every issue and always provides an outstanding service. He is always such a pleasure to be instructed by and achieves superb results for his clients. A star of the field.‘
‘From the time I contacted Fosters, I found all the staff to be very professional, polite and helpful. All I can say is, I would have no problem in recommending them to family or friends.‘
‘When I first contacted Fosters, I knew my case would be a difficult one. Stephen Green who dealt with my case was exceptional, he was so easy to talk to, he explained everything fully, in layman’s terms which I could understand. He was patient, very supportive and so kind. My case was not an easy one, but they always gave me hope. I know they were genuinely as pleased as I was when I won my case.‘
‘I think the biggest difference is the practice’s honest and straightforward approach, which is very refreshing. I also found that the advice was practical rather than leading me down a route which would have incurred far more fees.‘
‘The team not only had a comprehensive understanding of the law but was also able to communicate in away which gave me confidence in its ability and clarity of understanding.‘
- Represented the widow of a man who died as a result of exposure to asbestos. The matter was fully contested to trial but at both the original trial and on appeal to the High Court judgment was entered in favour of the claimant.
- Acted for a patient in a mental health hospital who suffered serious burn injuries due to significant failings in her care. The matter was settled prior to the issue of court proceedings.
- Represented a former prisoner who suffered a brain injury after being assaulted in a prison gym. The matter was contested on liability and quantum all the way to trial when quantum was agreed on the morning of the trial and liability was found in the claimant’s favour after a one-day trial.
Gotelee Solicitors in Ipswich provides a regional personal injury and clinical negligence service through its office network, which includes Woodbridge and Hadleigh. In 2019, the team was involved in two high-profile cases acting for the families of two children who suffered catastrophic brain injury during their birth. 'Thorough, diligent' head of clinical negligence Tim Humpage 'cares about his clients and works hard to ensure clients are not overwhelmed by the litigation process'. Experienced partner James Davies, who has 'a lovely empathetic manner', leads on personal injury matters. Former nurse Diana Infanti and associates Sian Mullane and Stevan Stratton are also recommended.
‘This is the first time I have been involved in a clinical negligence case, which was started by my late wife. The team is very friendly and helpful when visiting the office or by email and telephone.‘
‘Our case is being handled by Tim Humpage. My wife was disabled and unable to travel to their office 18 miles away. Before we started this case, Tim travelled to our house three times to discuss all aspects and what was involved. After we agreed to go ahead with the case, he came several times to the house for information. My wife had low concentration levels so making statements took time and we were very grateful to him. Sian Mullane is now assisting Tim with our case and she has been excellent also.‘
‘Tim Humpage cares about his clients and works hard to ensure clients are not overwhelmed by the litigation process. He is thorough, diligent and willing to go the extra mile for his clients. Tim provides a caring, personal approach to his cases.‘
‘The team, without exception, is top quality. They care passionately about their clients and are totally committed to achieving the best possible outcome. They expect the same standard for the counsel they instruct. The team is headed by Tim Humpage and he is ably supported by Diana Infanti, Sian Mullane and James Davies.‘
‘They are a high street firm and so are friendly and approachable. Further, lay clients can actually go into their offices to see a solicitor or have a conference. Yet they have a highly competent PI department with some stellar individuals.‘
‘Stevan Stratton is a stellar personal injury practitioner. He is an excellent lawyer and a first-rate tactician. He gets great results for his clients through tenacity, hard work and skill. If you were a claimant in a serious injury case in East Anglia, you would want him in your corner.‘
‘The firm has excellent strength in depth. They have caring and meticulous solicitors.‘
‘Tim Humpage is extremely dedicated, his attention to detail is outstanding and his clients love him.‘
‘The firm has a developing specialism in claims arising out of child sexual abuse. James Davies has a lovely empathetic manner and is able to put troubled clients at ease.‘
‘The PI team is long-established and very highly regarded.‘
- Acted for a local teenager who was injured at birth due to the mis-managements of his birth and his mother’s labour. Liability was issued after Court proceedings were issued in the High Court in London.
- Acting for a child injured at birth due to the mis-management of his delivery and his mother’s labour. Court proceedings have been issues in the High Court in London.
- Acting for two separate clients in cases arising from the failure by a local Ophthalmology Department to adequately monitor and treat patients with raised intra ocular pressure in their eyes and to properly manage and treat their glaucoma.
Morgan Jones Pett
Specialist personal injury and clinical negligence practice Morgan Jones Pett in Norwich has a track record in high-value and complex cases that stretches back more than 30 years. Handling work both from East Anglia and nationwide, the firm has experienced partners in David Jones and Sara Westwood who handle every type of personal injury claim from low to high value, including head injuries, spinal injuries and industrial disease cases. Legal executive Simon Bransby is also recommended.
Other key lawyers:
‘They are a local firm who handle personal injury and clinical negligence cases with the skill of larger national firms. They appear to have excellent relationships with their clients, and provide a personal touch.‘
‘I have worked with Simon Bransby, who is a highly skilled individual. He is tactically astute and has a great relationship with his lay clients.‘
- Represented several members of the family of seven-year-old Summer Grant who died in March 2016 when the bouncy castle she was playing on blew away because it wasn’t properly secured. This case received considerable national media attention.
Clapham & Collinge Solicitors
Norwich is home to a personal injury practice at Clapham & Collinge Solicitors that handles work across Norfolk, including through its offices in North Walsham and Sheringham. The firm's work includes industrial disease, asbestos, serious injury, accident at work and road traffic accident claims. Lead partner Philip Lumb is a respected litigator for whom personal injury is a key focus. Legal executive Katie Smith also has more than ten years' experience in this area of law.
- Advised a client regarding a personal injury claim after he was sexually assaulted.
- Represented a client who was involved in an accident in a supermarket. The supermarket admitted liability and a settlemtent was negotiated with their insurers.
- Representing a client who was involved in a road traffic collision.
Cozens-Hardy LLP in Norwich handles personal injury matters for a growing number of clients in Norfolk. The firm handles a diverse range of claims but is best known for its work in matters concerning traumatic brain injuries. Practice head Damian Short and associate Jane Welsh have secured multimillion-pound awards in employer’s liability and road traffic cases arising from amputation and traumatic brain injuries.
Other key lawyers:
‘Whenever I am instructed by this firm, the instructions are always very clear and detailed. Also all the relevant medical information and x-rays are supplied together with the instructions. I find that the partners are always available to discuss any areas of concern or areas that need clarification. This makes the process of preparing a medical report much more efficient. I would not have any hesitation in recommending this firm.‘
‘I have had most dealings with Damien Short, who at all times has displayed a very high level of professionalism.‘
‘My principal and almost exclusive contact with Cozens-Hardy LLP was Damian Short. He was tenacious in pursuit of his clients’ best interests. He was excellent and kept me fully informed at every stage.‘
‘Damian Short was superb and kept me fully informed on the progress of this claim from the very start. His instructions were clear and I was never asked to compromise my opinion.‘
Hatch Brenner LLP
Hatch Brenner LLP is a long-established firm in Norwich that handles injury claims arising from road traffic accidents, assault, medical negligence or fatal accidents at work, in a public place or abroad. Litigation partner Colin Cook specialises in brain injuries, accident claims and medical negligence. He also has experience in dealing with Criminal Injury Compensation Authority claims. He is supported by litigation executive Pasha Alnadaf.
Other key lawyers:
‘I think Hatch Brenner Solicitors is unique because of the way it treats different aspects of the case. The in-house peers from secretaries to solicitors handle all aspects of the case very professionally.‘
‘My solicitor, Colin Cook, took over my case from another solicitor midway through my case and I found him professional in taking over the case. He and his secretary helped put my mind at easy during every stage.‘
‘In my experience, Hatch Brenner provides an excellent PI service. I find their dedication to detail, their breadth of experience and their commitment to the client far superior to many of their competitors.‘
‘I work primarily with Colin Cook. He has a deep understanding of the PI field and I find his approach to cases highly professional. He has always been very accessible and keen to give his clients the best possible support. He heads a team of the highest quality.‘
‘I find the team has an excellent approach to its clients and case managers. Very empathetic and tuned into their clients’ needs. They are enthusiastic in the representation of their clients and do generally want to help their injured clients improve.‘
‘Colin Cook is empathetic to his clients and demonstrates excellent understanding of differing diagnoses which occur as a result of a catastrophic injury. His knowledge and understanding of traumatic brain injury and its sequalae is particularly good. He is also very resourceful and has an excellent knowledge of the services available to his clients in his geographical area.‘
‘Every injured person is treated as an individual not as a case.‘
‘I have worked following instructions from Colin Cook and Ali Masterson. They are rigorously correct in their approach. I would very happily recommend them to my patients.‘
‘Very proactive, helpful and supportive. They deal with good barristers and are timely with meetings.‘
‘Colin Cook is engaging. He works well within the group. Good management of cases. Good communication.‘
‘This is a small, hardworking team led by Colin Cook. The firm has close ties with Headway – a charity assisting head injury survivors – with Mr Cook volunteering a lot of his time to the charity to assist its patrons.‘
‘This head injury team is without parallel in Norwich, which has a wide catchment area of head injury patients.‘
‘Colin Cook is a superlative head injury lawyer. He is eloquent and elegant on the paper. He has a collaborative style that insurers respect.‘
‘Colin Cook pitches his clients’ claims at a level where their interests are properly protected without alienating insurers from sitting down and discussing settlement.‘
‘Colin Cook is courageous, offering access to justice to many claimants with difficult cases that are rejected by other law firms. His head injury practice is not a job to him, it is a vocation.‘
Hunt & Coombs LLP
Hunt & Coombs LLP has a personal injury practice that handles road traffic accidents, workplace accidents, public liability cases, catastrophic and serious injury claims, sports injuries and criminal injury compensation matters. Practice head Naina Tilney has more than 30 years' experience in litigation, focusing predominantly on personal injury cases, and she is supported by solicitor Mariam Alipour.