Personal injury: pursuer in Scotland

Digby Brown LLP

Described as a ‘force to be reckoned with’, market leaders Digby Brown LLP works exclusively for claimants and fields a practice spanning across Scotland, with offices in Edinburgh, Inverness and Kirkcaldy. Solicitor advocate Gordon Dalyell  oversees the group and has a proven track record acting in road traffic accidents and other fatal claims. In Glasgow, the core team features head of serious injury Chris Stewart, who covers catastrophic injury claims, Fraser Simpson, who manages industrial diseases, and David WilsonMark Gibson specialises in product liability matters, including defective medical product claims, while Kim Leslie is instructed on historical sexual abuse matters. On the litigation side, Moira Kay remains the key name. Over in Aberdeen, Neil Davidson leads the practice there and advises on claims arising from the oil and gas industry.

Other key lawyers:

Fraser Oliver; Brian Castle; Mark Gibson; Chris Stewart; Fraser Simpson; Kim Leslie; David Wilson; Moira Kay; Neil Davidson

Testimonials

‘Very efficient, great quality cases, highly knowledgable team.’

‘Moira Kay is a very robust litigator and knowledgeable about catastrophic cases.’

‘Digby Brown are bold and tenacious in fighting for their client’s interests.’

‘They are always a force to be reckoned with.’

‘There is a wealth of experience and knowledge within the firm as a whole. Clients should be aware they will always be in good hands.’

‘Gordon Dayell and his team are great to work with. Very calm and organised. Always prepared. Great with clients.’

‘The market leader for PI by a reasonable margin. Very strong approach to case management, which pushes cases to a conclusion. Cases are investigated thoroughly and the evidence presented well.’

Key clients

Spinal Injuries Scotland

Headway

Asbestos Action and Clydebank Asbestos Group

Brake

Members of the Compensate Personal Injury Network

A large proportion of our work now comes from our reputation as Scotland’s leading personal injury firm and the most recognised legal brand in the country.

Work highlights

  • Client suffered a stroke and brain injury following a minor RTA. The insurers offered just £1,000 pre-litigation. Case ultimately settled for £1.9m – and out of court.
  • Successful proof in high value EL case after man died in a workplace accident. Case settled for £922,000 following successful court judgment.
  • Successful proof in a fatal diving case which also followed a successful Supreme Court ruling. Diver died after walking on deck of vessel in flippers. We successfully held defenders accountable after they failed to have the case dismissed under Athens Convention.

Balfour+Manson LLP

‘Exceptionally well-organised and hugely committed’, Balfour+Manson LLP continues to act in highly complex personal injury cases, including catastrophic road accidents and fatal accidents. Based in Edinburgh, the practice also has a growing workload handling stress-related work claims, particularly for teachers. David Short is considered the go-to for aviation accidents in Scotland and abroad, whilst David McIntosh has over three decades of experience in civil litigation matters. He routinely handles workplace injury claims for members of the teacher’s union. Also in the team is Julie Clark-Spence in Aberdeen, who focuses on offshore accidents and other international claims.

Practice head(s):

David Short; David McIntosh

Other key lawyers:

Julie Clark-Spence

Testimonials

‘Expertise, dedication, modernity and a determination to help pursuers through traumatic times by providing excellent legal services.’

‘David McIntosh – diligent, dedicated and vastly experienced. Able to work under pressure. Has the respect of his peers, counsel and the bench. A truly exceptional practitioner.’

‘Small team but punching above its weight. Strong client communication skills.’

‘David McIntosh: extremely well-organised, very approachable and excellent client communication skills.’

‘They are a very experienced and able team of litigators with an excellent reputation in the profession who always deliver first class results for their clients. They are regarded as among the best in their field.’

‘David McIntosh is a star individual. He us a very experienced and well regarded PI expert solicitor who has excellent people skills. He is excellent with clients and when dealing with opponents and always prepares cases to the highest standard.’

‘The team is headed up by David Short who is head of litigation. David is a very experienced and effective litigator but also approachable and good to work with.’

‘David Short is a fantastic lawyer and great with clients. He is approachable, proactive and well respected in his field. He is not phased by difficult opponents and simply focuses on getting the best result for his client. Exceptionally well organised and hugely committed to client care.’

Key clients

Kenyan Tea Pickers

Work highlights

  • Instructed by Hugh James, Solicitors to represent a number of their clients who are tea pickers in Kenya. The defenders are an Aberdeen based company and the contracts of employment are directly between the Aberdeen company and the individual tea pickers in Kenya. They have all sustained musculo skeletal injuries. The test cases are being run in All Scotland Personal Injury Court against the Aberdeen company.

Harper Macleod LLP

‘Displaying excellent judgment’, Harper Macleod LLP’s personal injury practice handles complex and high-value claims covering fatal accidents at work, catastrophic injuries and fatal accidents abroad. Spearheaded by Elizabeth Mitchell, the group is made up of key partner Heather Calderwood in Glasgow who focuses on wrongful death and fatal claims, and senior associate Amy Dickson, who frequently appears before the Sheriff Courts on public liability matters. Marina Harper was promoted to the partnership and is the key contact for serious injury work.

Practice head(s):

Elizabeth Mitchell

Other key lawyers:

Heather Calderwood; Amy Dickson; Marina Harper

Testimonials

‘Strong relationships with their clients who value the advice given to them.’

‘Marina Harper: good technical knowledge; works hard to achieve the best outcomes for her clients. Committed team who have the client at the core of what they do.’

‘Amy Dickson – strong, clear, determined and impressive litigator.’

‘The team displays excellent judgement, skill, and knowledge, and also a strong ethical commitment. They appear genuinely to care for their clients, rather than to cost-build or to build their brand.’

‘Heather Calderwood is a standout solicitor. She displays true leadership and excellent, ethical judgement.’

Lindsays

Operating out of Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dundee, Lindsays has a track record of acting in road traffic accidents, liability matters and catastrophic injuries. The practice also has an industrial diseases sub-group. Overseen by David Armstrong, the team features solicitor advocate Jonathan Cornwell, who is active in work-place accidents, while Lauren Pasi is singled out by clients and is ‘exceptionally capable’, handling a diverse caseload of work spanning road traffic accidents to bullying and stress related claims at work.

Practice head(s):

David Armstrong

Other key lawyers:

Lauren Pasi; Jonothan Cornwell

Testimonials

‘I have been very impressed with the way that my expectations have been managed throughout the process.’

‘The way that I have been kept informed throughout, the well drafted and structured comms and the quick response to any queries has not only managed my expectations and kept me grounded, but has also made me feel confident that everything is being done in my best interests.’

‘Good, clear and unequivocal communication. I always know what is happening, why it is happening and how long it is likely to take.’

‘I am also kept informed of challenges and likely outcomes in a way that is understandable to the lay person. This level of transparency brings with it a confidence that things are being done right and to a high standard, with a focus on achieving the best and most importantly fairest outcome.’

‘The team at Lindsays always gave prompt replies to any enquiries I had. I was a third party as they were dealing with an issue concerning one of my daughters and once they received the required authorisation to speak to me they treated me in a courteous manner whether by email or telephone. Their constant communications kept me well informed of the progress in my daughters case.’

‘Lauren Pasi was patient and understanding in her dealings with my case and I felt greater confidence from our communications than I have with other firms.’

‘Lauren Pasi has extensive experience in all common aspects of personal injury law (employers’ liability, public liability, road traffic, industrial disease). She is a very safe pair of hands who is familiar with jurisdictional issues too.’

‘The team works together well by marrying a blend of approachability with commitment to achieving excellence for the client.’

Key clients

Calio Claims

First Central Insurance Company Limited

Lindsays Alliance

Society of Radiographers

LIM Insurance

Law Society of Scotland

Lindsays Alliance.

Ward Hadaway

Coplus

Work highlights

  • Acting for LJ  in 70 mph head on collision with severe physical and psychological injuries.
  • Norrie MacLeod on behalf of Hannah MacLeod. Claim for £1m for serious physical and psychological injuries sustained by 3-year-old child in RTA.”
  • LD “Claim worth £1.5m for pedestrian knocked down by bus and run over twice.”

Thorntons Law LLP

Based out of Dundee and Edinburgh, Thorntons Law LLP provides ‘excellent client care’, and handles brain injuries, head injuries and permanent vegetative state (PVS) claims, particularly for children. Caroline Kelly now leads the practice which features Gordon McBean who handles catastrophic injuries and Clare MacPherson who has over two decades of expertise in high-value clinical negligence claims. Solicitor advocate Michelle Adam has a track record of appearing in the Court of Session and negotiating significant damages on behalf of clients whilst Gary Mannion achieves litigated public liability claims. Associates Kathleen-Erin Lawson and Richard Poole are also core members of the group.

Practice head(s):

Caroline Kelly

Other key lawyers:

Gordon McBean; Clare Macpherson; Michelle Adam; Gary Mannion; Kathleen-Erin Lawson; Richard Poole

Testimonials

‘I work with a number of the PI team at Thorntons and I can say that they are all an absolute pleasure to deal with.’

‘They are all extremely approachable. Between them they have a vast amount of experience which is apparent when communicating with each and every one of them.’

‘They are always willing to go that extra mile for their clients and always look to provide the best possible client journey. A talented and driven team who deserve their every success.’

‘We have worked with a number of the fee earners at Thorntons for quite some time now and each and every one of them stand out for different reasons. I feel that over the years we have built a relationship that allows for open and honest communication which is key to a long and successful professional relationship.’

‘The team are always open to changing processes to achieve the best outcomes for all parties, which is incredibly refreshing, whilst always keeping the clients best interests at the heart of all they do. A fantastic bunch of individuals who together make a great team.’

‘Incredibly kind, friendly and professional staff at Thorntons Law LLP. They have communicated with me and explained everything in detail every step of the way. Billing has been transparent the whole time, receiving a monthly email with a cost update.’

‘Richard Poole has always made me feel comfortable, heard and supported during every meeting. Email correspondence is alwasy friendly and in detail.’

‘Gordon McBean and Caroline Kelly are both very experienced and pride themselves on delivering great client care whilst helping to improve and grow the Thorntons brand. They are a pleasure to deal with.’

Key clients

Karen Houston for Tyler Houston

Ian Wakeham

Haesel McDonald

John Coull

Lesley Kilgour

James Henderson

James Mackenzie

Iain Fraser for son Grayson Fraser

Lynsay McCallum

Gillian and Andrew Steven & Others

Work highlights

  • Advised parent of a young child who suffered life changing injuries in a road traffic accident achieving a seven figure settlement for this vulnerable client.
  • Advised parents and family on claim arising from death of newborn baby who died as a result multiple failures in hospital care leading up to and immediately after her birth.
  • Advised trawler fisherman who suffered severe and life changing crush injury to leg at work winning a six figure settlement.

Anderson Strathern

Anderson Strathern continues to be instructed on a range of employers' liability actions, particularly from the Royal College of Nursing which remains an exclusive client. Catriona WattRobert Carr and Robbie Wilson jointly oversee the practice, advising on accidents abroad, catastrophic and fatal claims, as well as other health and safety matters. Gary Burton focuses on catastrophic medical negligence matters and advises regulatory bodies.

Practice head(s):

Catriona Watt; Robert Carr; Robbie Wilson

Other key lawyers:

Gary Burton

Irwin Mitchell Scotland

At Irwin Mitchell Scotland, the personal injury practice has a steady stream of complex serious injury claims and fatal cases. Senior associate David Bell leads the practice from Glasgow and is ‘consistently impressive’ according to clients, and is the key name for fatal asbestos disease matters and military claims. The group also covers road traffic accidents and serious injury claims.

Practice head(s):

David Bell

Testimonials

‘Irwin Mitchell treated us with ultimate respect and dignity during the entire procedure. They took the time to understand what was important to us.’

‘David Bell was the lead on our case. Throughout the entire process he kept us very well informed. David was completely open and honest with us and went to great lengths to manage our expectations. Equally, David was extremely empathetic and really took the time to understand what our motivation was and what was most important to us.’

‘I have worked professionally as an expert witness for Irwin Mitchell for over fifteen years and have found them to be extremely thorough, caring and professional in all their dealings both with me and with their clients. They have a programme of engagement with their expert witnesses which has helped develop excellent relationships with the firm.’

‘David Bell has been my main link to the firm and has shown exceptional care and attention to detail in his instructions and accompanying papers. This has made my job as an expert witness much easier and ensured that my reports are as thorough as possible. It is clear that he has both extensive experience and expertise in the field and I commend him on his approach to personal injury cases.’

‘I have dealt with the firm in relation to several high-profile and difficult fatal accidents and other cases involving serious injuries. The team are well organised and thoroughly prepared. They are able to make challenging cases as straightforward as possible for the clients and prepared to go the extra mile to keep clients informed about what is happening and what is ahead for them in the litigation. An excellent personal injury firm.’

‘David Bell is Senior Associate and Team Leader for PI in Scotland. He is an outstanding solicitor who goes out of his way to guide clients through the litigation journey. He is dedicated and knowledgeable about the ins and outs of personal injury litigation. He shines in particular with his clear and concise advice to clients about the steps which they need to take along the way.’

Work highlights

    Jackson Boyd LLP

    Jackson Boyd LLP is singled out for its ‘high standard of service’ and handles catastrophic injury cases and has seen an uptick in work surrounding workplace assaults, sexual abuse and invasive cosmetic surgery. Managing partner Alan Macdonald jointly oversees the practice with ‘fantastic lawyerDave  Berry, who is highlighted by clients. Workplace accidents are dealt with by Debbie Milne, who is also recommended for brain and spinal injuries. David McKinney is also of note.

    Practice head(s):

    Alan Macdonald; Dave Berry

    Other key lawyers:

    Debbie Milne; David MacKinney

    Testimonials

    ‘Experts in their field. Able to be flexible and provide bespoke reporting/services. Delivers services efficiently and cost effectively but always with customers in mind.’

    ‘Excellent PI litigators. David Berry is consistently impressive. He is personable, responsive, experienced, understands the issues and is always well prepared.’

    ‘For someone like myself who knew nothing about personal injury claims this company will talk you through every detail before they start then communicate every step as they go.’

    ‘They contact you before they do anything to do with the claim. Alan McDonald is first class and talked me through every part of the claim kept me upto date on every detail could not fault him or his colleagues in any way.’

    ‘First of all I would like to recommend their very high standard of service. They have a friendly approach, are highly professional and extremely patient taking time to explain the circumstances of the case, and outlining the options in a very difficult and complex personal injury case.’

    ‘Their attention to detail in every aspect of this very complex case was second to none.’

    ‘The consistency of their work, throughout the whole of this case was marvellous.’

    ‘By pulling in the relevant people at the right times when needed and using every bit of their strength they brought this very difficult and complex case to a final successful conclusion.’

    Work highlights

    • Securing a seven figure sum for a woman who suffered life changing injuries as a result of a road traffic accident
    • Recovering a six figure sum for the family of a woman killed as a result of a road traffic accident
    • Recovering a five figure sum for an auxiliary nurse at a secure psychiatric hospital who suffered injury attempting to restrain an extremely violent patient during a prolonged assault on a colleague.

    Morton Fraser

    The personal injury practice at Morton Fraser is known for its handling of fatalities, particularly those resulting from historic exposure to asbestos. The team also acts in road traffic accidents, industrial diseases and other catastrophic claims, and is led by Jenny Dickson from Edinburgh. She is supported by accredited specialist Nicola Edgar in Glasgow who’s highlights include fatalities, employers’ liability claims and injuries to cyclists.

    Practice head(s):

    Jenny Dickson

    Other key lawyers:

    Nicola Edgar

    Work highlights

    • Acting for the families of two men killed in a road traffic accident.
    • Acting in a catastrophic injury case for a man who sustained a life changing injury at work.
    • Acting in many cycling injury cases, including one where an individual suffered catastrophic injuries following a collision with a vehicle.

    Slater and Gordon

    Slater and Gordon has experience pursuing claims in the Court of Session, Sheriff courts throughout Scotland and the Personal Injury Court on a variety of injury claims including spinal and brain. Overseen by Stuart Cochran, who retains his expertise in claims involving amputation and for police officers, the team also features Karyn McPhee who handles asbestos related illnesses.

    Practice head(s):

    Stuart Cochran

    Other key lawyers:

    Karyn McPhee

    Testimonials

    ‘They were a really good team, all of them they worked well together keeping me informed throughout my case.’

    ‘Stuart Cochran was an absolute super star with me I don’t know how he put up with me. Not only that he achieved a fantastic result in terms of compensation which will effect my young family for life.’

    ‘As a gay man, I found all the staff at Slater Gordon were non judgemental, professional and accepting of me. They showed diversity and their approach was superb.’

    ‘I dealt with Karen McPhee. To say that across all spectrums she delivered outstanding service would be an understatement. Nothing was ever too much trouble, she was exceptional in dealing with the sensitive nature of my claim. Karen provided exceptional service throughout, she displayed extremely thorough characteristics through the 6.5 years it took to bring the organisation to justice.’