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Product liability: defendant in London

Arnold & Porter

Arnold & Porter has a strong market reputation in product liability matters, in particular cases which leverage its life sciences practice. The team fields specialists with additional qualifications in medicine, toxicology and pharmacy, among others. It is instructed in group actions and individual claims, investigations and public inquiries as well as in safety and recall matters. Practice head Ian Dodds-Smith is regarded as an expert in the field, with considerable knowledge of matters relating to the European Union. Adela Williams is well versed in advising on clinical trials, marketing authorisations, and advertising and promotional matters. Jacqueline Mulryne and counsel Tom Fox are also noted.

Practice head(s):

Ian Dodds-Smith

Baker McKenzie

International companies regularly instruct Baker McKenzie for its expertise in product liability litigation, recall issues and regulation matters. The group's client roster primarily consists of manufacturers, distributors and retailers from a variety of industries. The team works closely across offices and departments, with established links to the firm's environment, dispute resolution and commercial practices. Practice head John Leadley has considerable experience in the contentious space and knowledge of the pharmaceuticals sector. Another key team member is Kate Corby, who focuses on regulatory compliance and product safety mandates. Graham Stuart as well as senior associates Rachel MacLeod and Joanne Redmond are also noted.

Practice head(s):

John Leadley

Testimonials

‘Baker Mckenzie provides specialist advice on product liability, they provide good advice, have the required experience and they also provide good customer service.’

‘Kate Corby is our relationship partner, she has great experience and knowledge in the field and does a great job providing us with the right advice, She ensures that we are happy with the services provided and ensures that the advice is provided in a commercial and fast way.’

Key clients

CR Bard

Stryker Corporation

Emerson

Bose

Mattel

Work highlights

  • Representing implantable medical device manufacturers, C.R Bard and Stryker in various litigation proceedings in which affected patients allege that products used in their treatment were defective or negligently manufactured.
  • Advised multinational toy manufacturer Mattel on a product safety issue concerning an inclined sleeper product.
  • Engaged by a multinational professional services company, to provide specialist, multi-jurisdictional product liability support in an area of major strategic growth for the client.

DAC Beachcroft LLP

DAC Beachcroft LLP's highly regarded practice primarily acts for insurers and is increasingly active for companies; the team is experienced in the medical devices and pharmaceuticals space, where it is involved in high-profile cases. The practice also advises clients from the automotive, engineering, medtech and food industries on matters relating to manufacturing and safety regulations, policy coverage issue and criminal investigations. Wendy Hopkins heads up the team and has special expertise in China-related matters. Simon Pearl is also a highly regarded practitioner in the field, and Alison McAdams  is well versed in litigation as well as regulatory mandates. Senior associate Olya Melnitchouk is also noted.

Practice head(s):

Wendy Hopkins

Testimonials

‘Wendy Hopkins has an international focus and has gained more experience on the Asian, especially the Chinese market, than any other lawyer in UK.’

‘Very experienced team. Skilful lawyers who give confident clear advice.’

‘Display an excellent knowledge of the subject. Timely updates and always seem to have the cases that they are dealing with in focus. Actively are pushing cases forward which isn’t the case with other solicitor firms.’

‘Olya Melnitchouk is really engaged with driving the cases we have to resolution. I have a high level of trust in Olya and her team.’

Key clients

Novartis

NuVasive

Ipsen Pharma

Optegra

HCA Healthcare

Alcon

NHS Resolution

Rydon Maintenance

Juul

HDI

Zurich

Chubb

Allianz

QBE

XL Catlin

Newline

CNA Hardy

Hiscox

RSA

Tokio Marine Kiln

AGCS

MS Amlin

Berkley Global Product Recall

Ping An

China Taiping

Work highlights

  • Advising NuVasive on a variety of matters, including the use and regulation of products, the implementation of the Medical Devices Regulations, training for healthcare professionals, ongoing patient monitoring and liability exposure, the ABHI code of practice, general MHRA advice, disclosure queries and compliance.
  • Acting for Optegra in multiple claims regarding surgical implantation of intraocular lenses (IOL) manufactured by Oculentis that numerous claimants allege were defective and required subsequent explanting and revision surgery.
  • Representing the Blood Service and all NHS Trusts in respect of product liability claims arising from blood and blood products allegedly contaminated with HIV, Hepatitis C and other viruses.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP impresses with its broad practice, which regularly acts for clients in product liability claims and class actions and also assists with product recalls, regulatory matters and insurance queries. The team is active for companies from the pharmaceuticals and healthcare, manufacturing, tobacco and food and drink sectors; it also has notable expertise in the automotive industry and fields a dedicate global group, which advises on queries regarding connected and autonomous driving technology. The practice is jointly led by the experienced Philip Pfeffer, who is active in contentious matters; insurance specialist Anthony Dempster and Howard Watson, who has more than 25 years experience in product liability work. Senior associate David Bennett is another key member of the team.

Other key lawyers:

David Bennett

Testimonials

The team has breadth and depth of experience as well as a commercial approach.

Key clients

Diageo

BAT Italia Spa

BAT

Associated British Foods

Volvo Trucks

Work highlights

  • Acted for Diageo in relation to the global coordination of legal and commercial issues arising from its distribution of thalidomide in the late 1950s/early 1960s.

Hogan Lovells International LLP

Hogan Lovells International LLP's practice is involved in matters arising from the full life-cycle of a product, with expertise spanning the pharmaceuticals, medical device, cosmetics, tobacco, electrical, food and beverage, automotive and telecoms industries. The team has notable experience in group litigation and cross-border cases in Europe. The highly regarded John Meltzer and Matthew Felwick are noted for their broad expertise in product liability issues, while Valerie Kenyon is an expert in the technology sector; the trio jointly lead the practice. Consultant Lucy Ward as well as senior associates Elise Martin and Lookman Rawat are also highlighted.

Testimonials

The product liability team is stellar. It deserves its enviable reputation as one of the top practices in London.’

The team of fantastic experienced litigators is fully steeped in product liability expertise and able to cope with the most demanding litigation.

John Meltzer is the doyen of the department. There is not much that he hasn’t seen. He is calm and authoritative – a grand master tactician and a fantastic figurehead for the team. He has particular experience in complicated and complex group litigation.

Matthew Felwick is the inspiration behind the specialisation in life sciences. He is hugely experienced in both litigation and regulatory matters. And is able to provide his clients with advice which benefits from his broad product liability experience and niche knowledge.’

Caroline Moore remains one of the great assets of this department. Her encyclopaedic knowledge and her attention to detail are particularly valuable for her clients.’

Key clients

Zimmer Biomet

Ford

Novartis

Google

Mylan

NO&T

Nike

De’Longhi

Oculus

Vodafone

Work highlights

  • Advised Nike on product safety and regulatory issues relating to its full range of sporting goods and innovative sports technology products globally.
  • Acted for Zimmer Biomet in its European product liability litigation (including the UK Biomet Group Action) in relation to metal-on-metal hip replacements.
  • Represented Ford in UK litigation brought by owners of vehicles with EcoBoost engines.

Addleshaw Goddard

Addleshaw Goddard fields an established practice, with a particularly strong track record in the pharmaceuticals sector. The team is also increasingly handling matters for clients from the retail and consumer goods, technology and manufacturing industries, and is well versed in the full spectrum of matters, from regulatory compliance issues relating to recalls to contentious claims. Louisa Caswell is well-known in the market for her knowledge of disputes, while legal director Mark Chesher is experienced in a variety of commercial litigation proceedings, and Erin Shoesmith is a key regulatory contact in Manchester. Managing Associate Cécile Burgess also attracts praise.

Practice head(s):

Louisa Caswell

Testimonials

The product liability team at AGs is one of the go-to teams for defendants in this complex field of litigation. The team is adept at handling not just the detail of the legal issues, but, more importantly, the complexities of and pitfalls of group litigation in this context with a calm strategic resolve.’

Addleshaw Goddard is a serious player in the field of product liability law.’

The team is ably led by Louisa Caswell who combines a sound knowledge of the law and understanding of the industry with shrewd and measured litigation know-how.’

Mark Chesher is everything you could want from an instructing solicitor: knowledgeable, sound in judgement and a great team-player.

Cécile Burgess is a rising star who combines a superb knowledge of the law with mature litigation judgement.

Key clients

GlaxoSmithKline

Britvic plc

Build-A-Bear Workshop

Dixons Carphone plc

PZ Cussons

Diageo

Sainsbury’s / Sainsbury’s Bank

Volkswagen AG

Victrex Group

Totally Wicked (Pillbox 38)

Work highlights

  • Acting for GSK in relation to its defence of over 100 claims brought under a Group Litigation Order.
  • Advised Britvic in relation to urgent safety issues and potential recalls of its leading brands.
  • Advised Volkswagen in relation to the product liability and safety aspects of its strategic alliance with Ford.

Clyde & Co LLP

Clyde & Co LLP's practice covers a wide range of sectors, including the aviation, agriculture, automotive, construction and engineering, medical device, pharmaceuticals, manufacturing and retail industries; the team also has particular experience in supply chain disputes. Representing manufacturers and insurers alike, the group also handles product recalls and liability claims. Practice head Neil Beresford is well versed in cross-border disputes, in which the firm's international network adds value. Claire Petts leads the global healthcare group, a field in which legal director Erika Rainger is also active. Duncan Batchelor is a key contact in Edinburgh and Ian Plumley is also noted.

Practice head(s):

Neil Beresford

Testimonials

‘Clyde & Co has a dynamic team with innovative ideas. The partners I use always act in the best interest of their clients by seeking the most favourable outcome.’

‘As a team that focuses almost exclusively on defender work, they have a skill set that is unrivalled. The team is led by excellent partners but they also have some very talented junior solicitors who are working their way up through the ranks.’

‘Duncan Bachelor is exceptionally commercial. He can take decisions quickly without endangering the commercial sense behind them. He is simply excellent.’

Cooley (UK) LLP

The team at Cooley (UK) LLP has notable expertise in regulated sectors, including the life sciences, technology, cosmetics and consumer products fields. Clients instruct the group on reviewing the designs of products and the team also advises on launches, regulatory risks, compliance issues and sensitive product liability claims. Practice head Rod Freeman has an excellent market reputation; he is also well versed in protecting the reputation of brands. Sascha Grimm combines experience in regulatory investigations and civil litigation, while associate Sarah-Jane Dobson has a biomedical degree. The practice was further enhanced by the arrival of special counsel Claire Temple, who joined in late 2018.

Practice head(s):

Rod Freeman

Testimonials

Strong, well-connected global practice group which is seamlessly connected with other experts.’

The team is well rounded, sophisticated, nimble, and attentive.

The individuals are very client-oriented, deeply knowledgeable about global practices, have a vast depth of experience, and are just plain fun to work with.

Key clients

Whirlpool

Kids II

Acco Brands

Shimano

Stanley Black & Decker

FMCC

Polaris

Spin Master

Step 2

Thrasio

Work highlights

  • Acting for Whirlpool in relation to the Grenfell Tower Public Inquiry.
  • Acting as international products counsel for a global cosmetics manufacturer in a wide portfolio of liability and safety issues.
  • Advising a global technology company on international product liability and product safety matters.

Kennedys

Kennedys fields a large group of product liability specialists, who defend insurers and their insureds against a variety of claims. The team is active in the  pharmaceuticals and medical devices, consumer goods, and engineering sectors, and often acts in cross-border mandates, which leverage the firm's international network. The group is led by Trevor Davies, who has experience in handling product recalls. Samantha Silver is well versed in group litigation. Other prominent practitioners include Katherine ProctorDaniel TurnerBen AramMirjam Schorr and senior associate Karishma Paroha.

Practice head(s):

Trevor Davies

Testimonials

The team has a wealth of experience dealing with a very wide range of product liability disputes.’

Excellent profile, knowledge and experience in this area.

Trevor Davies is a doyen of the defendant product liability world.’

Samantha Silver is a star, who manages litigation calmly, sensibly and with great tactical insight.’

Katherine Proctor – very bright litigator, strong legal analysis, unswervingly dedicated to pursuing the clients’ interests.

Mirjam Schorr is absolutely at the top of her game and wonderful to work with.’

Karishma Paroha is a fantastic lawyer, who excels at guiding clients through the litigation process and ensuring that their needs are front and centre.

Key clients

Chubb

AIG

Hiscox

Zurich

Generali

AGCS

GE Insurance Solutions

DePuy International Limited

Finsbury Orthopaedics Limited

Beko

XL Catlin Insurance

Janssen-Cilag Ltd

Johnson & Johnson Medical Ltd.

Work highlights

  • Acting for Beko plc in respect of a fridge freezer fire which resulted in the death of an individual.
  • Representing J & J Medical Limited in claims relating to pelvic mesh products.

RPC

RPC is noted as an established practice acting for insurers in product liability matters. Areas of expertise include handling claims, in particular in the life science field, as well as product recalls, often spanning multiple jurisdictions. Other sector expertise encompasses the automotive, chemical, construction, food and drink, household goods, power, technology and telecoms industries. Practice head Gavin Reese and life sciences expert Dorothy Flower are both highly reputed practitioners, while Nick McMahon is a key name in the health and safety space. Legal director Peter Rudd-Clarke is another name to note.

Practice head(s):

Gavin Reese

Testimonials

Very strong product liability team. Whilst known historically for life science claims, this masks the strength and depth in all types of product liability action – with the team especially adept at product recalls and product claims giving rise to fatal accidents.’

The group combines a good breadth of experience with tactical awareness and good sense.’

Nick McMahon is very experienced and has excellent judgement.’

Gavin Reese is a very strong tactician. He has unrivalled experience in handling the biggest product liability claims and his natural charm masks a fierce determination to achieve the best results for his clients.’

Peter Rudd-Clarke is an outstanding lawyer. Highly regarded for his attention to detail and strategic insight.’

Key clients

Ace Chubb Ltd

AXA XL

Bard Pharmaceuticals Ltd

BSI Group

Clover Leaf Products Limited

Corin Ltd

Heidelberg Engineering Ltd

Make Yourself Amazing (MYA)

Medisoft Ltd

GC Aesthetics PLC

Work highlights

  • Acting for Clover Leaf Products, the former UK distributor of PIP breast implants, and its insurers in defending part 20 claims following the resolution of the original litigation which involved over 1,000 claimants.
  • Defending Bard Pharmaceuticals Limited, the manufacturer of an opioid pain relief patch, in a claim regarding an alleged, accidental, opioid overdose.
  • Defending Make Yourself Amazing (MYA) against a claim for an alleged ruptured implant, following breast augmentation surgery.

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP is regularly instructed by manufacturers, designers, distributors and suppliers from various sectors, including the technology and communications, IT, automotive, consumer electronics, luxury goods and medical device industries. The group advises on commercial and regulatory matters, safety requirements and liability issues, with specific expertise in new technology developments. The practice is led by Jonathan Speed and senior associate Russell Williamson, who are both part of the wider dispute resolution department.

Testimonials

‘The advice we give is very thorough and well organised. The team is friendly and readily available at all times.’

‘Friendliness, thinking practical and commitment.’

Work highlights

  • Acting for a German car parts supplier in relation to a High Court claim against one of its suppliers concerning the supply of defective fuel tank valves.
  • Assisting a global electronics and manufacturing company with two business-critical product recalls in Europe regarding power adaptor and video projector products.
  • Acting for a UK-based manufacturer of electric sub-sea cables in connection with various claims arising from the supply of defective connector parts for certain offshore wind farms.

BLM

BLM is a go-to practice for international insurers in claims relating to food and drink, property damage, construction and medical device issues. The team's offering in product recall matters was enhanced with the arrival of specialist and new practice head Jason McNerlin, who joined from Clyde & Co LLP in early 2020. Michael Harvey is well versed in coverage work, policy issues and recoveries, while recently promoted partner Daniel West also handles personal injury cases. Former practice lead Jim Sherwood now focuses his practice on developing the firm's GILC network.

Practice head(s):

Jason McNerlin

Testimonials

‘My experience of this practice is that it is responsive, effective in its defence of the case and dealing with it is as pleasant and reassuring an experience as it can be in the circumstances.’

‘All of the lawyers that we dealt with are of the same breed: friendly, pragmatic and sharp litigators with a modern approach. We also like their in-depth understanding of our strategic considerations. They are there for you when you need them – but they don’t rack up costs when there is no movement in a case. Their approach to costs is sensible and we have developed a great working relationship with the firm over the years.’

Key clients

AIG

Allianz

Aspen Risk Management Ltd

Aviva

Coca Cola

Direct Line Group

Generali

HDI Global

Ironshore

Mitchells and Butler

QBE

Sunseeker International

XL Catlin

Zurich

Work highlights

  • Representing Buy It Direct, via Aspen Risk Management Ltd in a recovery claim after an air conditioning unit set fire.
  • Acting for AXA in a case relating to defective glue.
  • Representing Allianz and Optare in a US claim, in which the claimant alleges having suffered injuries when disembarking a bus manufactured by the client.

DWF

The product liability practice at DWF is regularly instructed in civil claims relating to defective products and recoveries along the supply chain as well as advising on policy coverage issues and regulatory compliance regarding labelling, advertising and product launches. Acting for insurers as well as corporations, the group is well positioned with a strong international network. David Kidman has considerable experience in contentious matters and claims in the life sciences and food & drink sectors, while Peter Barnes has a specialised cross-border technical product liability practice; they lead the group together with Dominic WatkinsJohn Groome is a key contact for insurers and reinsurers.

Testimonials

‘There have been three main benefits in working with DWF. The first is the expertise of the team – they strike the right balance between being experts in their field but providing practical, commercial and economical advice meaning that we deal with claims effectively and efficiently. The second is their experience. They are able to provide considered advice on what their experience is of dealing with similar claims; being before a particular court; and dealing with particular experts. This allows us to make better decisions on how to proceed with a claim not just based on whether we think we could “technically” defend it but what the likely outcome would be if we did defend it both economically but also from a brand protection perspective. This instills a sense of confidence that we are getting the best advice. Finally the team is always available and on hand to help. They deal with claims quickly, respond to emails at all times of the day, are always available on the end of the phone and provide support and assistance on all matters whether big or small.’

‘Charlotte Kelly is a key individual for our company. Charlotte has an astute legal mind. She is able to provide technically accurate advice on law and procedure but apply it practically and commercially to ensure her recommendations are the right ones for the company.’

‘Peter Barnes is also another key individual. His experience, knowledge and technical ability is second to none and we feel lucky to have him working with us providing sensible advice on how to deal with claims. His commitment to staying up to date with us as a business and ensuring that DWF are always serving us in the best way possible is admirable.’

‘Very strong team in International liability arena, particularly in life science and pharmaceuticals. Specialist knowledge and strong on policy coverage. Great network for International cover.’

‘John Groome. Easy to deal with. Very strong knowledge base. Resolution based approach.’

‘The DWF Product Liability Team is my first choice for all Product claims.’

‘David Kidman is a Product Liability Specialist. Has great knowledge of product liability claims and works on claims often involving high value, complex and multi-jurisdictional issues. David is always approachable, helpful and extremely good with our customers.’

Key clients

RSA Insurance Group

QBE

Aviva

Chubb

HDI Global

Zurich

Travelers Insurance Company

MS Amlin

Direct Line Group

Pret A Manger (Europe) Limited

Tokio Marine & Nichido Fire Insurance Company, Tokyo

Tokio Marine Kiln Insurance

Halfords Group Plc

Work highlights

  • Involved in the PIP Breast Implant Group Litigation for two insurer clients and, directly, for the clinic Welbeck, which culminated in a unanimous Supreme Court win in October 2019.
  • Advising Pret in relation to allergen and safety issues relating to tragic deaths following the consumption of allergens in Pret products.
  • Instructed on behalf of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to advise on the technical product liability issues which arose out of an issue with a ship engine.

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP

The Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP team is involved in a variety of industry sectors encompassing the aerospace, chemicals, food, consumer products, pharmaceuticals and medical device industries, with specific expertise in the automotive arena. It is skilled in handling high-volume product liability claims as well as advising on product safety compliance issues, recalls and withdrawals. The group also regularly works across offices; key contact Richard Matthews heads up the firm's pan-European product liability practice from the Leeds office, which also includes principal associate Peter Shervington.

Practice head(s):

Richard Matthews

Other key lawyers:

Peter Shervington

Testimonials

‘Eversheds has a premier Product Liability team. It is highly regarded for its strength and depth covering very high value product claims, often giving rise to complicated jurisdictional and foreign law elements.’

‘Richard Matthews is an outstanding lawyer. His judgement is hugely trusted by his clients for his attention to detail. He is an outstanding case tactician and is equally respected by opponents for the clarity of his thought and ability to highlight the winning point.’

‘Peter Shervington has an outstanding intellect. He is able to quickly assimilate a mass of complicated technical detail and is especially good at working with expert witnesses.’

Key clients

Johnson Controls

Johnson Matthey

Allied Glass

DuPont

XL Insurance

Sodexo

Assa Abloy

Bettys and Taylors Group

Smiths Group

Honda Motors Europe

Siemens

B/S/H Group (formerly Bosch Siemens Hausgerate), a Bosch Subsidiary

Kingspan

Ricoh Europe PLC

Mayer Brown International LLP

The team at Mayer Brown International LLP covers a wide range of mandates, from crisis management and risk advisory work to handling claims on behalf of manufacturers and insurers. It is also noted for its close collaboration with other practice groups, including the corporate team on transactional due diligence, as well as with its international offices. The group has notable expertise in product liability matters in connection with construction claims, including in relation to designs involving pipework, valves, pumps and cladding. Team head Miles Robinson is also well versed in group actions. Other prominent practitioners include Mark Stefanini and James Morris.

Practice head(s):

Miles Robinson

Other key lawyers:

Mark Stefanini; James Morris

Testimonials

‘Calm, experienced team who always deliver.’

‘Miles Robinson is an extremely reliable and responsive individual, in times of crisis he is always available and fully supportive with very clear guidance and support.’

Pinsent Masons LLP

Pinsent Masons LLP is noted for its broad practice, which receives instructions from clients in the industrial, consumer, electronic, vehicle, food and drink, tobacco, pharmaceuticals and medical implant products arenas. Led by Andrew Masterson in Leeds, the team advises on conflict prevention issues, recall and crisis management matters and defence work as well as compliance and regulatory requirements. Jacqueline Harris in Edinburgh regularly handles medical device and pharmaceuticals cases, while Leeds-based legal director Louise Nahon has a background as a mechanical engineer.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Masterson

Testimonials

‘Louise Nahon – excellent lawyer and fantastic technical knowledge.’

Key clients

Smith & Nephew

Lenovo

Eon

Schneider

Kingfisher

Nissan

Chubb

Bosch

SIG Plc

Centrica

Work highlights

  • Acted for a manufacturer and distributor of vehicle accessories in relation to the notification of a recall program in the UK relating to a vehicle awnings product where instances had arisen of the motorised product deploying unintentionally.
  • Pursuing manufacturers and distributors for an insurer in respect of claims for liability under the Consumer Protection Act 1987, Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008, Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994, in negligence and for breach of contract where those claims relate to defective household appliances, boilers, tools and battery operated products.

Shook, Hardy & Bacon International LLP

Shook, Hardy & Bacon International LLP fields a broad product liability practice, which handles matters for clients from the tobacco, alcohol, pharmaceuticals, medical devices and automotive sectors, primarily at an international level. The team is experienced in risk management issues, regulatory matters and defence strategies. It is led by Simon Castley, whose experience spans contentious regulatory and administrative mandates. Alison Newstead has considerable expertise in medical device inquiries, while Sarah Croft specialises in the pharmaceuticals space. Trevor Bridges and Samuel Sebree are also noted.

Practice head(s):

Simon Castley

Shoosmiths LLP

Shoosmiths LLP fields a team of regulatory and criminal specialists, enabling it to advise clients on a broad range of matters. Acting for manufacturers and insurers alike, recent work includes assisting with compliance issues, regulatory enforcement mandates, inquests and inquiries as well as product recalls and civil disputes. Notable practitioners are Philip Ryan in Thames Valley, who specialises in the food, regulated products and manufacturing spaces, and Manchester-based Richard Marshall, who made partner in mid-2020. Philip Tansley joined from RPC in early 2020, and Roy Tozer and Susie Wakefield jointly lead the practice.

Practice head(s):

Roy Tozer; Susie Wakefield

Testimonials

‘Very experienced, hugely knowledgeable and very well resourced. Very capable litigators in this area: will defend claims robustly but also quick to identify the most effective commercial strategy for their clients in any litigation. They have a very in depth knowledge of all the regulatory aspects relevant to their clients’ businesses, something which is not always shared by their competitors. In sum, a first class act punching well above their weight in this area.’

‘Richard Marshall: Hugely knowledgeable and strategically very astute. Probably one of the best litigators in this area.’

‘Richard Marshall – completely dedicated, charming but takes no nonsense.’

Key clients

Hoover Limited

BGL Limited (Comparethemarket.com)

Premier Guarantee / AmTrust Europe Ltd

Chubb Insurance

HDI Gerling

Work highlights

  • Representing PSB UK Limited in the Grenfell Tower Inquiry
  • Acting as Hoover’s go-to product liability advisers for claims arising out of defective goods.
  • Acted for structural warranty insurer MD Insurance Services in relation to a number of high-profile defective cladding claims.

Burges Salmon LLP

Burges Salmon LLP has a strong food and drink practice, which acts for producers, chains and supermarkets. The team handles issues arising from the full cycle of a product's supply chain as well as advising on food safety and labelling matters, and product recalls and withdrawals. Sian Edmunds also represents clients in product liability disputes in the food sector. Other key names include Andrew Burnette, who is also experienced in contentious matters, and associate Reshma Adkin.

Practice head(s):

Sian Edmunds; Andrew Burnette

Other key lawyers:

Reshma Adkin

Work highlights

  • Acted for a leading supplier and manufacturer of food flavourings in a product liability claim against a supplier arising from the supply of onion powder contaminated with plastic.
  • Representing a major manufacturer of ready-meals in a claim against a supplier linked to the presence of plastic contaminants in raw ingredients.
  • Advised a major manufacturer of foods to go on a product recall following the discovery of metal in bread and acting in the subsequent claim involving supplier and insurer.

DLA Piper

DLA Piper has a varied practice, which handles product stewardship issues and recalls, regulatory matters and product safety work, as well as compliance mandates and investigations. Through its strong international network, the team is well positioned to handle cross-border mandates, often acting for retail, home appliance and pharmaceuticals companies. Teresa Hitchcock's broad practice also encompasses environment, health and safety and licensing law, while Alistair Clough is a key contact for healthcare matters; both are based in Sheffield.

Other key lawyers:

Alistair Clough; Taryn Jones

Testimonials

‘They are extremely business minded and very responsive as we always have to comply with tight deadlines.’

Key clients

Newell Rubbermaid

Caesarstone Sdot-Yam Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advised Newell Rubbermaid UK on product composition and labelling laws under CLP and REACH and the potential impact of Brexit.
  • Advising Newell Rubbermaid on matters in relation to products which would be caught under the new PPE Regulations.
  • Assisted Caesarstone Sdot-Yam Ltd with legal obligations relating to product safety and any potential civil and criminal / regulatory liability claims.

Keystone Law

Keystone Law has considerable experience in property damage claims arising from fire and escape of water following the failure of a used product as well as international trade issues; it handles matters in various European jurisdictions and primarily acts for large insurers. Antony Colman is well versed in the industry and electrical goods sectors, while Jason Kallis is knowledgeable of consumer goods cases.

Practice head(s):

Antony Colman; Jason Kallis

Testimonials

‘Commercial approach with a wealth of knowledge, covering a variety of sectors. Willing to go “the extra mile”.’

‘Jason Kallis – Appreciates claims are collaborative effort between stakeholders. Good communicator. Willing to advance a strong defence, although always conscious of the economics of a claim.’

‘Antony Colman – Very knowledgeable and willing to explain why certain positions should be adopted.’

‘Antony Colman is excellent, well known for product liability defence and questions of Private International Law.’

Key clients

HDI Global SE

Allianz Global

Zurich (China)

BSH Home Appliances (Bosch)

WR Berkley

Aliaxis Group S.A.

UNIQA Österreich Versicherungen AG

Barbican Managing Agency Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Allianz on a product liability matter concerning the adjustment of loss after an early admission of liability by a global white goods manufacturer, in respect of a fire caused by a dishwasher causing extensive damage to a residential property.
  • Acted for a supplier of electrical circuit protection equipment and its insurer on a large number of matters involving fires caused by a defect in electrical circuit protection equipment.
  • Defended a subrogated recovery claim concerning a fire at a factory, on behalf of the insurers and their insured.

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP's team is instructed by product manufacturers, distributors and retailers from a wide range of industries, including the automotive, food and drink, life sciences, retail and technology sectors. Areas of expertise include product liability claims, regulatory advice, and general litigation. John Doherty is also well versed in EU-safety requirements; he jointly leads the team with commercial dispute resolution specialist Rustam Dubash. Associate Nick Bamber also advises on the regulatory landscape.

Practice head(s):

Rustam Dubash; John Doherty

Other key lawyers:

Nick Bamber; Elise Bevan

Testimonials

‘As a team I am impressed by the integrity, professionalism and commitment to support us through liability issues that is displayed by all members that I have come in contact with.’

‘John Doherty can be relied on to give the legal position and advice on the correct course to take, even when this is uncomfortable to hear. The particular quality that I value most highly is his strong sense of morality and ethics.’

‘The PMC team offers the perfect combination of technical advice, industry knowledge, commercial awareness and client-focus / partner time. Reliable delivery, on time, on budget and excellent value for money, every time.’

Key clients

Joy Organics LLC

Andreas Stihl Limited

The Conran Shop

British American Tobacco (BAT)

Leyland Trucks Limited

Bharat Forge

Veg of Lund

Work highlights

  • Advised British American Tobacco on a variety of product liability and safety issues, including issues relating to next generation products.
  • Assisted Andreas Stihl Limited with product regulatory and risk issues, encompassing appropriate labelling and presentation to ensure the safety of its professional power tool range.
  • Counselling The Conran Shop on product safety obligations, recall  issues and the associated disputes.

Simmons & Simmons

The team at Simmons & Simmons acts for insurers and reinsurers as well as companies in product liability claims. It specialises in the pharmaceuticals and medical devices arena and has also seen a growth in instructions from the automotive industry. The group is noted for handling product liability class actions arising from the US, Israel and South Africa, in which it works closely with its international offices. Jason Bright has extensive experience in the insurance space. The practice group, which is led by Emily Monastiriotis and James Pollock, is completed by of counsel Sherry Goodman-Smith and associate Russell Cowie.

Testimonials

‘The team is outstanding. They handle some of the largest and most complex product liability litigation, and are one of the best known and highly regarded teams in this area.’

‘Jason Bright is simply outstanding. He is extremely bright, immensely knowledgeable, a superb lawyer and an outstanding strategist. He is brilliant with clients, and a fantastic manager of large teams in complex cases, and a delight to work with.’

‘Sherry Goodman-Smith is superb – very bright, extremely dedicated, immensely hard-working, a very good lawyer and a real pleasure to work with.’

Key clients

Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty

HDI Gerling Industrie Versicherung AG

Sompo Nipponkoa Insurance

Chubb

Brit Insurance

Allied World

Argo Global

Work highlights

  • Acting on behalf of Munich Re which participates in various layers within an excess of loss programme issued to a world leading global medical technology Insured specialising in orthopaedic reconstruction.
  • Acting on behalf of an excess insurer of a global biotechnology company facing allegations that the US corn supply has been contaminated with certain genetically-modified traits.

Squire Patton Boggs

Squire Patton Boggs is knowledgeable in advising clients from the brands, consumer and industrial products industries as well as the food and beverage, chemical and medical devices sectors. The international practice handles cross-jurisdictional regulatory, criminal and civil proceedings, contractual protection issues and product recalls. Manchester-based practice head Rob Elvin is a product recall specialist, while Simon Garbett regularly handles supply chain disputes. Director Nicola Smith is also a key name to note.

Practice head(s):

Rob Elvin

Other key lawyers:

Simon Garbett; Nicola Smith

Testimonials

The team is very knowledgeable about the catering industry. It can relate to real life examples well.

Nicola Smith is diligent, knowledgeable and responsive.

Key clients

Mamas and Papas

RKW t/a Tower Housewares

Luceco Plc/Nexus Industries Limited

Molson Coors

Acorn Mobility Services

Morgan Advanced Materials

Makita (referral from EEF)

American Greetings/ Clintons Cards

MacDermid Performance Solutions

Kobayashi Pharma

Work highlights

  • Instructed by Mamas and Papas on a global child seat recall in relation to child car seats that were found to be defective, including advice on the applicable safety laws, risk strategy and recall procedure and the recall itself.
  • Assisted a UK importer and distributor of kitchen equipment in relation to a RAPEX notification issued by French authorities and potential recall of affected products which the client imports into the EU from China.

Taylor Wessing LLP

Taylor Wessing LLP's practice covers a wide range of mandates, from litigation, recalls and corrective actions to regulatory matters and issues relating to the risk management of products. The team works closely with its international offices, with particular close links to its German practice, and is instructed by companies from the technology, automotive and autonomous vehicles sectors as well as the life sciences and consumer goods industries. Practice head Katie Chandler is well versed in labelling and safety matters, and supply chain disputes, while David De Ferrars specialises in investigations and compliance policies.

Practice head(s):

Katie Chandler

Testimonials

‘Excellent team, which brings real value to the case. Very well resourced and knowledgeable.’

‘David de Ferrars: very approachable with excellent judgement.’

‘Edward Spencer: a great tactician and the individual to turn to on e-disclosure.’

‘Katie Chandler: a real star.’

‘Katie Chandler is a very capable, experienced, reliable and patient partner – an expert in product liability. Tasmina Goraya is a highly knowledgeable expert, especially in the more scientific and regulatory questions. Edward Spencer brings with him engagement, patience and expertise as well. Perfect fit for a legal team!’

Travers Smith LLP

Travers Smith LLP has substantial knowledge of regulatory and civil liability issues, areas of expertise for practice head Doug Bryden and Heather Gagen respectively. The team is also well versed in defending national and international companies against claims, as well as advising on compliance, product recall and crisis management matters; the group also has expertise is Brexit-related advisory work.

Practice head(s):

Doug Bryden

Other key lawyers:

Heather Gagen

Testimonials

‘Highly regarded small, lean dispute resolution team. Though capable of dealing with some big group actions including those with an international angle.’

‘Heather Gagen’s rise has been noted in the market as she has quickly took partnership in lighting speed. Very good at handling complex litigation including international mass tort group actions.’

‘A good combination of an active partner and a very competent colleague with the back-up of experienced part time former partners. Open and honest.’

‘Doug Bryden has clear expertise in the relevant areas and kept deadlines well.’

Key clients

Integer

Greatbatch

Work highlights

  • Defending a long running cross-border product liability case for a multinational medical devices manufacturer.
  • Acting in a detailed internal investigation and the regulatory defence of a global industrial appliances manufacturer following a UK fatality.

Weightmans LLP

Weightmans LLP is a key choice for insurers, companies and specialist underwriters and advises on liability, recall and compliance matters alongside a focus on representing clients in disputes relating to injury and property damage stemming from a defective product. Clients from the automotive, food and drink, and retail sectors instruct the team in individual as well as multi-party actions. Practice head Fiona East has more than 30 years of experience in the field, and Andrew Krausz has specialist knowledge of the aviation sector. Simon Durkin and associate Gemma Pressman are also key contacts.

Practice head(s):

Fiona East

Testimonials

‘Very customer focused, excellent communication. Always available and quick to respond to queries. Nothing is too much trouble.’

‘Steve Robb is exceptional in this field. He has a pragmatic approach and an ability to grasp quickly complex technical aspects. In this area, potential witnesses need to have their deep knowledge of a product honed into shape fit for witness statements and litigation. Steve Robb has great patience and charm to draw this out in a way readily comprehensible to both counsel and the Court. His quick mind makes very reliable bridges between experts and witnesses and between them and counsel.’

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP’s product liability practice handles recalls, technical product compliance issues and safety matters as well as crisis management work. It is regularly instructed by companies from the retail and consumer brands sectors and also acts for manufacturers from different industries. The practice is jointly led by regulatory specialist Nicky Strong in Southampton, Jon Cooper in Bristol and Stuart Wardlaw in Newcastle. Gavin Matthews, also in Southampton, is a key contact for retail clients involved in commercial litigation cases. Managing associate Ashley Borthwick in Bristol is another key member of the team.

Key clients

Kingfisher plc

B & Q

Tempur-Sealy

Intersystems Corporation

Kanlaon Limited  – Don Papa Rum

Post Office

Work highlights

  • Advising Kingfisher in respect of product safety, quality and assurance matters. This includes advice regarding the structure of quality control and assurance procedures across the Group, and limiting the exposure of the business, as well as senior management, to criminal sanctions and product liability claims.
  • Advising Intersystems Corporation on the application of the EU Medical Devices Directive to bespoke information management and lab management systems, which are supplied to healthcare providers on a global basis.
  • Advising high-end mattress developer and manufacturer, Tempur Sealy, on its product compliance strategy across the group.