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DAC Beachcroft LLP fields a ‘heavyweight’ team of ‘real specialists’, who are praised for their ‘excellent technical and commercial knowledge’. Providing ‘good value for money’, the team frequently acts for insurers, property and construction sector professionals and financial institutions, in claims against accountants, independent financial advisers, auditors and tax advisers. In recent work, the team defended Liberty Mutual, a firm of insurance brokers, in  a claim brought by the operator of a waste recycling plant concerning allegations that it received unsuitable insurance policy advice, and acted for First Title, a UK regulated insurer, in pursuing a loss of chance claim against a firm of solicitors following an aborted personal injury claim. Key individuals include Paul Davison, construction and engineering specialist Warren Kemp and Helen Ager.

Watson Burton LLP ‘gives very good and comprehensive advice’ and ‘never leaves a stone unturned’. The team is ‘hugely committed to its clients and regularly delivers great results’ thanks to its ‘willingness to always go that extra mile’. The team, led by Richard Palmer, routinely defends claims against architects, surveyors, solicitors, accountants and construction professionals, with particular expertise in defending claims brought against asbestos surveyors. As a key mandate in the construction sector, the ‘focused, committed, diligent and hugely personable’ Anne-Marie Knight successfully defended a client against a claim brought by a design and build contractor arising from the alleged defective design of foundations to several warehouses. ‘Excellent strategist’ Sarah Wilson is ‘intellectual and highly committed’.

The ‘top-class’ team at Clyde & Co LLP acts for insurers in the defence of claims brought against various professionals, most notably solicitors and accountants. Recent work includes defending a claim brought against an accountant for alleged incorrect advice, and defending a claim arising out of failed litigation. Anthony Brown heads the practice, which includes ‘first-rate’ London-based lawyer Gordon Walker  and the Edinburgh-based Gavin Henderson, who is described by clients as a ‘true leader with an incredibly sharp eye for detail and encyclopaedic knowledge’. QBE Insurance, Markel, Hiscox and Precision Underwriting are all clients.

Burnetts is noted for its expertise in professional negligence cases related to the property and construction sector, where the team frequently deals with claims against solicitors. Team head James Johnston, who was elevated to partnership in January 2018, represented a West Cumbrian engineering client in a claim against its former solicitors for their alleged failure to protect an option to purchase a freehold interest in an industrial unit. Consultant Patricia Hall negotiated a settlement of £150,000 for a client as a result of a successful claim against the claimant’s former solicitor for negligence and breach of fiduciary duty with regards to a property transfer. In other work, Johnston acted for a dental practice in its claim against an architect for alleged failure to prepare suitable plans for the development of a newbuild site. Consultant Sally Johnson is another key member of the team.

Cartmell Shepherd’s claimant-focused practice is led by director Mark Aspin and predominately acts for individuals and SMEs but is also experienced in dealing with defendant matters. The practice acted for a development company asserting negligence claims against financial brokers and a finance company, which failed to provide adequate advice on the suitability of finance products offered to the claimant. On the defence side, the team acted for a number of accountants.

At Hay & Kilner, Ros Sparrow is the main contact for professional indemnity work, which encompasses work for individuals, insurers, insured parties and brokers. Consultant Martin Soloman and agriculture specialist Rodney Jones are other names to note.

Noted for its ‘excellent level of service’, Tilly Bailey & Irvine’s ‘highly professional and knowledgeable’ team regularly acts for clients in pursuing professional negligence claims against solicitors, architects, accountants, surveyors and insurance brokers. Alison Leith heads the team. Helen Lyne and Kenton Bazeley joined Archers Law LLP in 2018.

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