Personal injury and clinical negligence: defendant in East Midlands

Browne Jacobson LLP

Lorna Hardman heads the national clinical negligence team at Browne Jacobson LLP, which acts for all types of healthcare providers on all types of clinical negligence claims, including avoidable brain injuries and serious birth injuries. The team includes senior associate Kelly Buckley, who acts on many 'early notification' cases for NHS Resolution. The personal injury team, headed by James Fawcett, focuses on high value and complex personal injury claims, acting for public bodies and insurers. 'Stand-out' Sarah Erwin-Jones specialises in abuse and safeguarding cases and 'fights passionately' for clients while remaining 'sensible and pragmatic when it comes to resolving cases'.

Practice head(s):

Lorna Hardman; James Fawcett

Other key lawyers:

Sarah Erwin-Jones; Kelly Buckley; Ian Long


‘Sarah Erwin-Jones is a partner with huge experience. She is always able to obtain a positive outcome for her clients.’

‘Sarah Erwin-Jones and her team at Browne Jacobson are friendly and competent and pursue sensible strategies and solutions to a problem. They are flexible in approach for discussion and keep you informed.’

‘Sarah Erwin-Jones and her team stand out as they have a resourceful team – they are well coordinated and set about regular reporting and assessment to keep clients informed.’

‘Sarah Erwin-Jones has vast experience of defending child abuse compensation claims and can rightly be considered to be one of the leaders in her field on the defendant side. She is highly professional, fights her clients’ corner and is above all practical in her approach to problems ’

‘Browne Jacobson fights hard for its clients and is completely on top of the law and developments in its specialist areas. They are at the forefront of clinical negligence and child abuse defence work.’

‘Sarah Erwin-Jones is well recognised as a specialist defendant lawyer. She fights passionately for her clients but is also sensible and pragmatic when it comes to resolving cases too.’

‘This firm specialises in investigating and handling past abuse claims. It has been involved in these claims for many years and has built up expert knowledge and skill in this field. It has been involved in many of the cases where case law has been developed.’

‘Lorna Hardman has provided excellent support to my organisation through the provision of cover for long-term absences.’

Key clients



Birmingham City Council

Derbyshire County Council

Dorset Council

EM LawShare

English Benedictine Congregation

Environment Agency

Gallagher Bassett International Limited


Insurance London Consortium

Leicester City Council

Leicestershire County Council


Lincolnshire County Council

Marine Management Organisation

Markel (UK) Limited

Medical Protection Society


Municipal Mutual Insurance

Natural England

NHS Resolution

Norfolk County Council

North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust

Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust

NPS Wales

Peterborough City Council

Resolute Management

Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Stoke City Council

Suffolk County Council

University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust

University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust

Zurich Municipal Insurance

Work highlights

  • For Municipal Mutual Insurance/Suffolk County Council, continued management of claims involving issues of real significance, to include the extent of the duty of care principle following Poole v GN.
  • Continued advice to the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust on a group action, which involves claims by more than 40 oral cancer patients who have, as a result of clinical negligence, suffered injuries such as facial disfigurement and being unable to eat normally.
  • Successfully appealed a first instance decision in an employer’s liability claim challenging a contentious finding of negligence against the client, Norfolk County Council – in doing so constrained the extent of the duty owed by employers following the introduction of the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013 and supported the policies and procedures the client had in place at the time of the accident.

Weightmans LLP

With a practice highly focused on the defence of personal injury and occupational disease cases, the 'heavyweight and no nonsense' team at Weightmans LLP handles an impressive caseload for large national and international insurers. The team 'offers excellence across the board' and acts in matters arising out of employer’s liability, motor, public authority and police cases. Practice head Dave Cottam 'combines an acute mind and vast experience' advising on catastrophic personal injury and large loss claims, including paralysis, chronic pain and amputations. Marie Wildt is described as being 'destined for great things'.

Practice head(s):

Dave Cottam

Other key lawyers:

Stephen Robb; Mike Simpson; Deborah Edwards


‘Deborah Edwards has great eye for strategy, is hard working and takes no nonsense from opponents. The best sort of lawyer to have on your side.’

‘Our primary and longstanding contact is Mike Simpson, who has an excellent bespoke knowledge of our business requirements. He also has an extensive knowledge of the work where he is instructed and provides a personal and detailed service for our complex and catastrophic injury claims.’

‘The team offers excellence across the board, with high quality partners supported by a coterie of excellent assistants. Their outstanding attention to detail is complemented by insight and realism.’

‘Stephen Robb brings charm and wisdom in equal measure. He is very personable as well as robust.’

‘Dave Cottam combines an acute mind and vast experience, with an easygoing style, which makes him a pleasure to work with.’

‘Stephen Robb is very pragmatic but with his experienced finger on every significant issue in the case; provides great leadership to his team.’

‘Marie Wildt is destined for great things – a hugely successful career lies around the corner. Supreme case management skills coupled with a fine legal brain and an eye for detail all make Marie the complete package.’

Key clients

Zurich Insurance

Motor Insurers Bureau

AIG Europe Ltd

AXAXL Insurance

PwC (Chester Street Holdings)

Municipal Mutual Insurance

Ageas Insurance

Tesco Underwriting

First Central Insurance

InterEurope AG Insurance

Covea Insurance

Octagon Insurance

Travelers Insurance Company

Tradex Insurance

Insure the Box Insurance

RSA Insurance

HDI Global

Work highlights

  • Advised the defendant, AIG Europe – Swift v Carpenter, when the Court of Appeal, overruled Roberts v Johnstone which had determined how the costs of accommodation in high value personal injury claims should be calculated.
  • Advised the defendant, Lidl, in a complex claim, where the court had to determine difficult liability issues between Lidl and Wilko.
  • Acted for the defendant in proceedings arising out of a road traffic accident. The case involved complex and difficult issues around liability, life expectancy and statutory funding. The settlement involved a “claw back” of damages on the claimants death.

Flint Bishop LLP

Flint Bishop LLP handles the full range of insurance defendant work, with a particular focus on catastrophic loss and motor vehicle claims, acting for, among others, major insurers as well as international car rental companies. Raj Sumal heads the team and has specialisms in handling motor claims where fraud is suspected, including staged accidents, induced accidents and phantom passenger claims. Jonathan Gilbert is focused on catastrophic loss in the context of road traffic accident claims and Nigel Partridge is experienced in matters relating to catastrophic spinal cord and traumatic brain injuries.

Practice head(s):

Raj Sumal

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Gilbert; Nigel Partridge

Key clients

Haven Insurance Company Limited

Sixt rent-a-car

Belron UK Ltd T/A Autoglass

Derbyshire County Council

Rapid Vehicle Management

Chief Vehicle Rentals

Work highlights

  • Saved over £1.7m for an insurer client who was facing a pleaded schedule of loss of over £2m in a complex large loss claim.
  • Advised on claim involving serious frontal lobe injury with elements of frontal lobe paradox settled at £750k against a reserve of £3m.