Barratts Solicitors' first-rate reputation is underpinned by its coverage of a wide range of complex personal injury and clinical negligence cases, including those involving brain and spinal injuries, as well as fatal claims. The firm's Court of Protection department delivers advice both during and after litigation for clients with brain injuries. The firm receives referrals from specialist brain injury units and professionals across the East Midlands region, and it is recommended by the brain injury association Headway. Practice heads Ed Myers and David Tomlinson have vast experience.
Personal injury and clinical negligence: claimant in East Midlands
‘Unusual in that they are a niche PI/Clin neg firm. This allows them to provide a genuinely joined up service. The “go to” firm in the Nottingham area. Unrivalled legal ability and client handling skills.’
‘David Tomlinson – PI – vastly experienced – handles claims of utmost severity from tetraplegia to birth injuries with aplomb. Ed Myers – PI – a very safe pair of hands.’
‘Barratts is unique in that it retains the approach to client care of a local firm combined with the first class specialism of a national outfit. The lawyers there have the utmost experience in dealing with catastrophic, high value and specialist claims. They advise and act in more complex and novel claims and are willing to take on difficult cases because they have the skill and ability to get the clients results.’
‘Ed Myers – charming, calm, client-focussed, organised and committed to the case. I would want Ed to manage my own claim if I was ever unfortunate to be injured seriously enough to need his services!‘
Freeths LLP has an experienced and sizeable claimant personal injury practice that demonstrates particular expertise in brain injury and spinal cord injury cases involving both adults and children. Karen Reynolds, who leads the team in Derby and Stoke, is on the AvMA and Law Society Clinical Negligence Solicitor panels. Nottingham-based practice head Jane Williams and her team are experienced in successfully mediating cases under the National Health Resolution Services scheme. In Leicester, Jane Goulding (the head of personal injury claimant) and her team are renowned for their experience of multiple party actions and high-value catastrophic injury claims.
‘A focused, highly experienced team that works to get the best for clients – from inquests through to formulating the claim, negotiating and – ultimately – trial. They are all very tuned in to the sector.’
‘I have used this firm on 2 occasions and have nothing but praise for the thorough and professional way they handled my claim.’
‘The team is a small one, but is exceptional because of the quality and experience of the head of team, Jane Goulding. She is one of the best and most experienced claimant’s solicitors working in this field at present.’
‘Jane Goulding: Her experience and expertise makes her one of the best solicitors working for claimants in this field, especially brain-injured children and adults. She is effective as a litigator, and very supportive of her clients.’
‘Jane Williams is exceptional: switched on, always accessible and highly experienced.’
Maxillofacial Group Action against University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Foundation Trust (‘UHNM’)
Sebastian Webster (a child and protected party, by his mother and Litigation Friend, Heather Butler)
- Acted for over 60 patients treated by Mr Bainton at UNHM in relation to investigations into Mr Bainton’s alleged use of DBX in orbital and maxillofacial surgery.
- Acted for Heather Butler, the mother of Sebastian Webster who developed polyhydramnios and was small for his gestational age; after appealing the initial decision, the court ruled that the obstetrician had been negligent in identifying the risks and subsequently failing to inform the client.
Nelsons Solicitors Limited has an experienced personal injury team that specialises in handling severe and catastrophic injury cases. The firm features on all appropriate and approved personal injury panels, including Headway and Spinal Injuries Association. The practice is led by Lisa Preece who is 'dedicated' and 'diligent'. Preece specialises in child and adult brain injury claims. Bruce Williams has a specialism in brain injury and birth injury claims.
Other key lawyers:
‘The team are tight knit and communicate well with each other. There is clarity of role for each team member leading to an efficient and effective service.’
‘Always there to listen and give good solid advice.’
‘Highly knowledgeable personal injury team with excellent communication skills.’
‘Lisa Preece always impresses with her dedication to clients and her diligent approach to cases, always making sure she gets the best for the client.’
‘Bruce Williams is excellent – he is very careful and knows his cases very well. He understands his clients well and is good at seeing where things might go wrong. He really is first-rate.’
- Represented a claimant who sustained serious orthopaedic injuries in a road traffic collision, which precluded him from returning to his pre-accident employment.
- Representing a claimant who suffered an accident at work resulting in the loss of his left hand which had to be surgically reattached.
- Represented the claimant who was a clockmaker/engineer working on a church clock when he suffered a severe laceration injury to his hand with the involvement of some tendons.
Shakespeare Martineau LLP handles matters involving brain injuries, spinal injuries, amputations, multiple injuries, fatal accidents and respiratory diseases, including asbestos-related conditions. The team has significant niche expertise in dealing with negligence cases against gynaecologists and GPs. Key growth areas include claims against GPs, dentists and elderly persons' care homes. Robert Rose and Steven Baylis jointly head up the Leicester team, while Kathryn Hart leads the team in Nottingham.
- Advised client on a clinical negligence matter relating to a birth injury case against Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust. The case is ongoing and valued in the region of £18 million.
- Advised client on a clinical negligence matter against GP who was represented by Clyde and Co. The case settled for £2.5 million.
- Advised client on a clinical negligence matter relating to a wrongful birth case against Birmingham Women’s Hospital NHS Trust. The case is ongoing and valued in the region of £5 million.
Banner Jones Solicitors
Banner Jones Solicitors is recognised for its ability to deal with complex compensation claims requiring a high level of expertise. The practice particularly specialises in handling matters involving brain injuries, spinal injuries, the loss of limbs, and loss of life. Simon Wright leads the team, which saw Robert Banner retire from his position as executive director to become a consultant solicitor. The team receives praise for its 'hands-on' approach and depth of knowledge.
Other key lawyers:
‘A local high street firm who punch way above their weight in PI and clinical negligence. Clients get the benefit of the personal rather than corporate touch, but a service which would be the envy of a national firm.’
‘Simon Wright leads the PI team. His judgement and commitment to the cause of his clients is second to none. Sarah Sadler is an excellent “lieutenant” to Simon and a key member of the PI team.’
‘Robert Banner and Simon Wright have in depth knowledge of all their clients and they take the lead, with a hands on approach to their work, rather than delegating to inexperienced legal professionals. This makes their work and their case management stand ahead of the big corporate claimant firms. Robert and Simon are available 24/7 to discuss issues. They inspire confidence.’
‘Experienced lawyers with an inspiring hands-on approach to their clients and excellent working relationships with medical experts.’
- Advised a client with throat cancer and other complications.
- Advised a client who suffered from major health issues, which led to him undergoing a kidney and pancreatic transplant operation.
- Advised a client who sustained soft tissue injuries to his foot and the subsequent psychological injury suffered during recovery.
Bridge McFarland LLP
BRIDGE MCFARLAND LLP, which has 'proper specialists in clinical negligence', undertakes a wide range of cases. Its varied work portfolio includes matters involving birth injuries, brain injuries, orthopaedics and gynaecology, as well as general surgical and dental work. The team also specialises in inquest representation and cross-jurisdictional cases. Ian Sprakes is the overall head of clinical negligence firm-wide. In Grimsby, Danielle Barney leads the clinical negligence team, while Kathryn Hudson leads the personal injury group. Stephen Lambert in Louth and Lorraine Taylor (whose practice is split between Hull and Lincoln) are also recommended.
‘Proper specialists in clinical negligence – which means the senior solicitors and associates have the right knowledge, skills and experience to handle any clinical negligence claim. Moreover they are very committed to their clients but always under the umbrella of exercising keen and correct judgment.’
- Represented the claimant in a claim for damages in relation to the failure to appropriately consent for injury during hip surgery and for the negligent performance of that surgery.
- Represented the claimant in a claim relating to the unnecessary fitting of an IVC filter resulting in him suffering from venous, vascular and cardiology problems which have had a significant impact upon him both physically and psychologically.
Shoosmiths LLP handles all types of serious injury claims, including complex, multimillion pound cerebral palsy claims, brain injury cases, spinal injury matters, amputation claims and fatal claims. The practice is characterised by its broad national coverage, undertaking high value claims at High Court as well as regional courts across the country. Chris McKinney acts as the national head of the personal injury team. Andrea Rusbridge, who leads the Northampton clinical negligence team, is an accredited CEDR mediator. Senior associate Sharine Burgess is also recommended.
Other key lawyers:
‘Shoosmiths are a very professional company. My solicitor always found time to communicate with me.’
‘My solicitor was Sharine Burgess, she was very professional and helpful and kept me informed at every stage of my injury claim.’
‘Team has a wide range of capacity, skills, experience and competencies within the organisation, which are readily available to effectively support each other and their clients requirements.’
‘The personnel of Shoosmiths have all unfailingly been efficient and capable, I have every confidence in their management of my case and in the advice they are providing. They have a clear strategic direction to achieve the best outcomes for me.’
‘The team worked in an appropriate and friendly manner. I was happy to speak to any team member regarding my interactions with Shoosmiths.’
‘Sharine Burgess was my main point of contact. I could list her attributes all day. She specifically showed to care, compassion, empathy, continued support. Our communication was perfect. When we set a time to catch up Sharine would call on time. She was reliable and professional.’
- Acting for client injured at work and who suffers from Complex Regional Pain Syndrome in a claim against her employer.
- Acted for a prison officer in claim for psychiatric injury against the Ministry of Justice.
JMP Solicitors has a notable specialism in acting for claimants in all types of personal injury, clinical negligence and industrial disease litigation. In addition to being a key player in Lincolnshire and the wider East Midlands regional market, the firm also generates mandates from clients based elsewhere in the UK. Managing director Ian Howard and 'tenacious' senior associate Christine Bowerman jointly lead the team. Bowerman achieves 'very good results'.
‘I am instructed by JMP solicitors on a regular basis and their work is extremely varied. JMP are prepared to invest in their clients and assist as much as they can with clients’ recovery. They will go that extra mile to ensure that not only is the best settlement achieved, but that the client is rehabilitated as well even in circumstances where the Defendant is not prepared to provide an interim payment‘.
‘Christine Bowerman handles many of the clinical negligence cases. She is tenacious and works extremely hard for her clients. She is strong and achieves very good results on their behalf.‘
- Successfully represented Rodrick Bevan’s family at an inquest concerning the negligent misdiagnosis of a tumour.
- Represented the parents at an inquest following the death of their baby because of delayed medical treatment.
- Represented a claimant following a misdiagnosis of a serious fracture.
Langleys Solicitors LLP
Langleys Solicitors LLP has a strong medical law team, which handles work ranging from lower-value matters to maximum severity cases. The firm is a member of the Society of Clinical Injury Lawyers and is strongly associated with Headway Lincolnshire. Practice head Andrew Cragg specialises in dealing with maximum severity matters, including cerebral palsy cases. Clients praise Cragg for his 'analytical legal mind' and 'profound knowledge'.
‘Langleys are a very impressive practice. I have been struck by their client care and thoroughness with which they handle their cases. Any client approaching them for legal advice and investigation of a claim will be in exceptionally good hands.’
‘I have been especially impressed by Andrew Cragg. Calm, a great analytical legal mind and an absolute professional who clearly engenders real confidence in his clients.’
‘The team at Langleys are absolutely second to none. The expertise they hold, the compassion they have and their professionalism.’
‘Andrew Cragg has such profound knowledge and works to a very exceptional standard. He is extremely committed to his clients and his work and goes above and beyond what is expected. I would not look elsewhere and would recommend both Langleys and in particular Andrew 110%.‘
‘Andrew leads a team of extremely good solicitors which includes Helen Murphy and Sarah Merrikin, who warrant praise for being excellent with their clients, for their experience in the area and for the quality of their instructions.’
Smith Partnership's group demonstrates a strong understanding of personal injury and clinical negligence, handling matters such as disease, spinal and orthopaedic injuries, multimillion pound catastrophic injury claims and fatalities. The team's litigators have extensive experience of representing clients in the County Court, inquests, High Court and Court of Protection. The team, which is jointly led by David Clark and Martin Bradbury, includes recently promoted partner Anna McLeod. Clients describe the practice as 'highly experienced and professional'.
Other key lawyers:
‘Anna McLeod is committed to achieving the very best results for her clients.’
‘Smith Partnership has a small but very capable team of fee earners in their PI/Clinical Negligence team. Their combined experience means that instructions to counsel are always well-prepared and cases are dealt in an efficient way. They are superb at client care without compromising the quality of their representation.’
‘David Clark: painstaking, thoughtful and sincere.’
‘The team at Smith Partnership are highly experienced and professional in the field of dental clinical negligence. I can highly recommend them from the perspective of an expert witness and the clients I have encountered have spoken highly of Smith Partnership. The overall impression is of a friendly, client focussed approach which is sensible and efficient. I have a very good working relationship with Smith Partnership.’
Wilson Browne Solicitors
Wilson Browne Solicitors has an experienced clinical negligence team and its practice is characterised by its national reach. The firm has a particularly strong specialism in inquests and regularly undertakes its own advocacy. Team head Louise Tyler, who is a medical negligence specialist, focuses on representing children in birth injury claims, and also represents clients at inquests. Solicitor Marianne Stapleton is another key individual in the group, which is 'thorough and attentive to detail'. Tyler is 'very experienced, organised and knowledgeable'.
Other key lawyers:
‘The firm demonstrates a high degree of expertise in clinical negligence. They provide very clear instructions and are tenacious in pursuing promising cases.’
‘I have worked exclusively with Louise Tyler, a partner who is the head of the medical negligence team. She is an excellent communicator, has an excellent approach to her cases and goes the extra mile for her clients.’
‘They are extremely thorough and attentive to detail and also listen to the clients views and opinions.’
‘Louise Tyler: very experienced, organised and knowledgeable about both the legal and practical aspects of claims.’
- Acted on a £2.4 million lump sum settlement for a severely disabled girl who developed staphylococcal meningitis and brain damage following a failure to provide antibiotics.
- Reached a £15 million settlement (of lump sums and period payments) for a severely disabled boy with cerebral palsy.
- Represented family at inquest into the death of their 3 year old son from sepsis and secured £95,000 settlement in the civil claim.
Rotheras' wide-ranging personal injury practice covers accidents at work, trips, slips and falls, beauty treatments gone wrong, dog bites, sports injuries, holiday accidents, serious injuries and road traffic accidents. Rebecca Emeleus and senior associate Wayne Vickers, who jointly lead the practice, are both described by clients as 'exceptional'.
Other key lawyers:
‘Incredibly focussed on the client’s needs while making the job easy for other professionals, such as medical experts.’
‘Wayne Vickers and Vicki Dodge are exceptional.‘
‘Small and professional team. Definite focus on local clients and on building a client/solicitor relationship with them.’
‘Rebecca Emeleus – Excellent and tenacious representative and will not be bullied or brow-beaten by defendants or insurers.’
Roythornes Solicitors' 'friendly' and 'down to earth' practice attracts high- value technical work and complex clinical negligence claims. The team specialises in travel claims and claims against the MOD, catastrophic claims and claims involving brain injury. Team head Victoria Stevenson has an interest in cases involving significant psychological injuries and mental health conditions.
‘This is one of the friendliest practices I have ever had the pleasure to be instructed by, and to work with. Not only are they friendly, approachable and down to earth but they have top quality work and provide excellent all round legal services.’
‘Professional, brilliant at what they do and friendly – you don’t always get all three, and this stands them apart. Tim Edwards is a friendly ‘stand-out’ solicitor, who goes the extra mile to ensure that his client’s best interests are pursued to the full.’
‘Tim Edwards has instructed me for a number of years. He is a very experienced, conscientious solicitor with good client handling skills. He has good judgment.’
‘Strong focus on the client and extremely helpful for the medical expert in providing a high quality legal product.’
‘Robert Dempsey and Victoria Stevenson both provide excellence in the legal product.’
‘Rob Dempsey dealt with my claim and he was always totally professional but at the same time had a very comfortable manner to work alongside. I have had experience of other legal firms where the individuals are difficult to contact or quick to shortcut responses.’
Spencers Solicitors handles a broad cross-section of personal injury cases, including brain and spinal cord injury, clinical negligence, industrial disease, and criminal injury. The firm has particular expertise in claims relating to motor accidents and is a member of the Motor Accident Solicitor Society. Amy Smitheringale heads up the team.
‘Decent, straightforward firm who have a very good local client base. They provide clear instructions.’
‘A nice fusion of personal service and modern working methods.’
- Settled a claim for a client who was 6 months pregnant and suffered a head on collision in her vehicle for the sum of just over £1.1 million.
- Settled a £3.5 million claim for the client who suffered severe brain and orthopaedic injuries when the driver of the vehicle lost control and hit an oncoming vehicle.
- Secured a £25,000 settlement due to a failure to correctly diagnose a retinal tear in the claimant’s eye, causing permanent damage and ongoing employment problems.
Wilkin Chapman LLP
Wilkin Chapman LLP advises on accidents at work, agricultural accidents, road traffic accidents, fatality claims and holiday claims. The firm is a member of the National Farmers Union. Tean Butcher and Jonathan Baker co-head the Lincoln team, while the group in Grimsby is jointly led by Mark Robinson and Steven Hennegan. Clients praise the team, which 'combines ability with knowledge in a manner that is very unusual in the field'.
‘Generally of a higher calibre than other firms, particularly those PI firms that have recently begun to take on clinical negligence work. Instructions are often better and the solicitors tend to take positive ownership of, and leadership on, their cases. My overall impression is entirely positive. Briefs are generally well-prepared and delivered in a timely fashion.’
‘Jonathan Baker: instructions are always detailed and precise. Jonathan invariably isolates the key issues in any case. I have also met him with a lay client and I could see that he had excellent client care skills, putting the client at ease and establishing a very helpful and positive rapport.’
‘Wilkin Chapman offer a dedicated specialist team that combines agility with knowledge in a manner that is very unusual in the field. They do not look for volume but represent clients with substantial issues and do so very well indeed.‘
‘Tean Butcher: a brilliant lawyer always working to get the best possible outcome for his clients, regardless of the size or significance of the case.’
- Representing a brain-injured claimant whose injuries would have been avoided with reasonable treatment, achieving a £9.5 million settlement.
- Representing a claimant whose son was born with spina bifida which was not identified on the ultrasound scans during pregnancy.
- Represented a claimant who suffered cauda equina syndrome as a result of a delay in diagnosing and treating the same.