Rising Stars: Personal Injury: Claimant

Personal injury and clinical negligence; claimant in Wales

Dolmans

Although Dolmans is best known for its claimant offering, the firm also stands out for the strength of its personalised and partner-led defendant practice which is adept at handling cases throughout the spectrum of the personal injury market, from Fast Track to high-value Multi Track matters. ‘Extremely courteous and caring’ team head Philip Bradley ‘prepares all his cases very thoroughly’, ensuring that he regularly secures favourable outcomes for claimants, in everything from RTA, employers’ liability and clinical negligence matters.

Practice head(s):

Philip Bradley

Other key lawyers:

Peter Bennett

Testimonials

‘The team is comparatively small but as a result you know that the cases will be dealt with a senior and experienced PI Specialist from start to finish and not delegated to more junior fee earners.’

The team came across as very competent and professional.’

Phil Bradley was extremely courteous, professional and caring, helping me navigate a traumatic experience whilst also dealing with my legal claim.’

Phil Bradley prepares all his cases very thoroughly. He deals with a range of cases across the whole spectrum of the PI market to include RTAs, EL/PL and clinical negligence. He also has a range of cases from Fast Track to high value Multi Track and the level of preparation and attention to detail does not vary (in a good way, i.e. the lower value cases are still prepared very well and not vice versa)!’

Work highlights

    Geldards LLP

    The small partner-led team at Geldards LLP excels at handling complex and often high-value cliinical negligence claims, including those relating to maximum severity brain injury, amputation and spinal cases. Experienced team head Spencer Collier has an excellent reputation in the field, including for cases involving the delayed diagnosis of cancer, as well as a number of current mandates involving the interpretation of informed consent.

    Practice head(s):

    Spencer Collier

    Other key lawyers:

    Rachel Kirby; Amy-Beth Probert

    Work highlights

      GHP Legal

      The ‘very knowledgeable and experienced’ Wrexham-based team at GHP Legal has long-standing expertise in a range of personal injury and clinical negligence matters, including in the context of complex multi-track cases. Robert Williams has an excellent track record handling personal injury cases as part of his broad-ranging litigation offering, including in relation to childhood sexual abuse claims.

      Practice head(s):

      Robert Williams

      Other key lawyers:

      Rod Waters

      Testimonials

      The team is very knowledgeable and experienced.’

      Work highlights

      • Young skilled fitter suffered career changing injury to arm which ended his work as welder / fabricator. Limited qualifications but very good earning prospects. Obtained employment expert career projection pre issue which supported a £250k settlement at a covid JSM.
      • Young skilled fitter suffered injury on home made machinery leading to finger amputations. Able to obtain better paid employment. Prosthetic expert evidence obtained that supported a life long claim for the cost of functional and cosmetic prosthesis. Settled pre-trial at covid JSM for £410k.

      Harding Evans LLP

      Combining ‘the legal expertise of a top firm with local knowledge and a client-focused approach’, Newport-based outfit Harding Evans LLP is a popular choice among clients, including those lacking financial means thanks to its legal aid franchise, across a wide range of clinical negligence mandates, including those of the utmost severity. ‘Skilled litigatorKen Thomas leads from the front and stands out ‘for his breadth and depth of knowledge in matters relating to clinical negligence, and for his calm and reassuring manner’. The ‘very able and diligentEmma Scourfield is also a pivotal member of the team following her move from NewLaw Solicitors in June 2021, substantially enhancing the team’s offering particularly in catastrophic injury claims, including brain, amputation, spinal and cerebral palsy cases. ‘Knowledgeable, conscientious and efficient’ senior associate Debra Kingworks tirelessly for her clients’, including in matters alleging negligence at nursing homes, gynaecological negligence and Cauda Equina claims. Recently promoted partner Victoria Smithyman heads up the firm’s personal injury team, which handles a range of cases, including RTA matters.

      Practice head(s):

      Ken Thomas (Clinical Negligence) Victoria Smithyman (Personal Injury)

      Testimonials

      Harding Evans houses a fairly large team of clinical negligence specialists. The team is experienced, client focused and the litigation is well resourced. Factors specific to litigation in Wales are well understood.’

      The very impressive clinical negligence team at Harding Evans combines the legal expertise of a top firm with local knowledge and a client-focused approach that most larger firms struggle to match.’

      The team genuinely cares about its clients and is determined to get the best results for them, and they have the skills to do just that.’

      Ken Thomas is a skilled litigator who builds an excellent rapport with clients.’

      Ken Thomas is a very safe pair of hands who stands out for his breadth and depth of knowledge in matters relating to clinical negligence, and for his calm and reassuring manner.’ 

      The very able and diligent Emma Scourfield has very broad experience including in catastrophic injury claims.’

      Debra King is knowledgeable, conscientious and efficient, and works tirelessly for her clients.’

      Work highlights

        Howells Solicitors

        Led by Cardiff-based Susan Edwards, the ‘hardworking and client friendly’ team at Howells Solicitors is ‘well placed to get good results for clients’ across a wide range of personal injury matters, including those involving complex issues relating to causation and liability. Much of the work stems from local South Wales clients, either in the context of direct instructions as well as referrals. Edwards is singled out as ‘a safe pair of hands for any PI claim’.

        Practice head(s):

        Susan Edwards

        Other key lawyers:

        Robert Bolt

        Testimonials

        The team is hardworking and client friendly.’

        Able to handle a wide range of personal injury matters, the experienced team is well placed to get good results for clients.’

        They were so helpful and nothing was too much trouble for them. They explained everything in a clear and concise way so you could understand every part of the claim.’

        The team shows excellent attention to detail and provides good advice.’

        The client-friendly Susan Edwards is hardworking and provides focused and detailed advice.’

        Susan Edwards is so knowledgeable in her field. She is a safe pair of hands for any PI claim.’

        Robert Bolt explained everything thoroughly throughout. Communication was great, very pleasant and helpful. Robert was very professional, clear and a pleasure to deal with.’

        Work highlights

          Hugh James

          Benefiting from a ‘good range of talent across the seniority spectrum’, Hugh James has ‘the knowledge, resources and desire to achieve the best results for clients’, throughout the panoply of personal injury and clinical negligence cases, including those of the utmost severity. Although it has substantially broadened the scope of work it handles, the firm’s traditional strength in handling industrial disease work remains, with the ‘calm, effective and extremely knowledgeableKathryn Singh having an excellent success rate on behalf of factory workers (and their families), in high-profile individual actions and group actions. Richard Green has a ‘deep knowledge of asbestos litigation’, which he is able to deploy for claimants in many of the country’s most complex and high-value disputes. Lucy Strong is ‘efficient, determined and pragmatic‘ and has a flourishing reputation at handling work for mesothelioma sufferers and their families. Mark Harvey heads up the firm’s specialist personal injury offering and has a ‘wealth of knowledge‘ in relation to medical device-related product liability matters, as well as expertise in acting for victims of accidents overseas. The ‘highly experiencedAndrew Harding is a ‘renowned expert in Court of Protection work’, and leads the multidisciplinary neuro law group, which has a tremendous reputation assisting claimants and their families in the aftermath of catastrophic injuries. Simon Ellis leads the firm’s specialist military personal injury group, which has developed a market-leading UK-wide reputation through its high-profile successes for military personnel which have suffered hearing loss and cold injuries, in particular. Ciaran McCabe (who ‘cuts to the issue straight away and cannot be pushed around’) and the ‘highly committed and technically very able’ Cari-Sowden-Taylor handle more conventional personal injury matters (including RTA matters) and both have significant expertise handling complex spinal injury and brain damage cases. Stephen Webber heads up the firm’s overarching individual client services division and is ‘simply brilliant’ at handling high-value clinical negligence claims. The ‘hugely experienced, hardworking and very thorough’ Rhian Parsons and ‘very efficient’ Katie McCraith both excel in handling cases of the utmost severity, including those involving brain injuries. At an associate level, the ‘calm and courteousGareth Beard has developed a ‘wealth of expertise’, including in relation to spinal injuries; the ‘hardworking and hugely dedicated’ Rebecca Mather is ‘experienced in transforming good results at inquests into successful clinical negligence proceedings’; and Hannah Webber has developed an excellent practice as a result of her involvement in a wide array of complex and high-value cases, including bowel, spinal and brain injuries arising from both obstetric mismanagement and delays in diagnosing meningitis. Mari Rosser is also a key name for clinical negligence work.

          Practice head(s):

          Stephen Webber

          Testimonials

          An extremely dedicated partner-led team, which has built on traditional South Wales industrial disease and accident work to become one of the leading PI teams in the whole country, with particular skill in handling group claims.’

          This practice is of national standing (England and Wales) for claimant catastrophic injury work. It is in the top division. The practice stands out because of the quality of its litigators, the size and depth of the pool of expert knowledge, its position at the cutting-edge of the legal market, the strength and depth of its resources and the way in which it is structured so as to support claimant’s and their families throughout the litigation process.’

          This is a top-tier firm taking on the most difficult case and winning them. They have the knowledge, resources and desire to achieve the best results for their clients.’

          Good range of talent across the seniority spectrum.’

          Andrew Harding – highly experienced and renowned expert in Court of Protection work. One of the longest practising solicitors in this field.’

          Mark Harvey – longstanding practitioner with a wealth of knowledge and experienced and a well deserved reputation.’

          Stephen Webber is simply brilliant.’

          Lucy Strong and Richard Green could not have done more to help and advise me in a difficult situation. They were patient, sensitive and understanding when asking me for the necessary information and kept me up to date with progress.’

          Richard Green is committed to seeking justice for mesothelioma sufferers and their families. His commitment and determination is what stands out from other firms.’

          Richard Green has a deep knowledge of asbestos litigation and brings his expertise to bear in the most complex and high-value litigation.’

          Kathryn Singh – huge experience, calm, effective and extremely knowledgeable. Very good at the overview of a case.’

          Katie McGraith appeared to be very efficient in her work and she kept me well informed of the situation through out our dealing.’

          ‘Rhian Parsons – hugely experienced, extremely hard working and very thorough. A no nonsense solicitor who has the confidence to make the difficult decisions.’

          Work highlights

            JCP Solicitors

            Benefitting from a good mix of seniority, mid-level and junior practitioners, the ‘responsive, friendly and proactive’ injury services team at JCP Solicitors is able to appropriately and cost-effectively resource a wide range of personal injury and clinical negligence matters for clients throughout the South, East and West of the country. ‘Very canny litigatorKeith Thomasalways has an excellent grasp of the issues‘ across a range of complex matters, including in relation to brain injuries. Mei Li is also very accomplished at representing individuals that have suffered traumatic brain injuries and heads up the firm’s catastrophic injury team. The ‘knowledgeable and determined’ Matthew Owen has an ‘impressive record of delivering for badly-injured claimants’, including cases involving delayed diagnosis, birth injury and negligent treatment. Associate solicitor Ian Rees, who heads up the firm’s non-catastrophic personal injury group, has a wealth of experience in personal injury where he ‘is adept at ensuring the best possible outcome for his clients’. Other recommended practitioners include Carmarthen-based Thomas Rees, who continues to grow the firm’s clinical negligence offering throughout South West Wales; ‘conscientious, responsive and friendly’ associate Kirsty Meech, for catastrophic personal injury claims; and professional deputy Lynne Morgan, who is able to provide a truly holistic service to clients who have suffered traumatic brain injuries.

            Practice head(s):

            Keith Thomas; Matthew Owen

            Testimonials

            JCP Solicitors has a very experienced personal injury team which deals with the full range of such claims in the East, South and West Wales areas.’

            The team is responsive, friendly and proactive, nurturing excellent relationships with their clients ensuring the best possible outcome.’

            They always listened to what I had to say, and would respond to any queries I had instantly. They always had my interests at the heart of anything they did, and the information was divulged in a language I could understand. The team is clearly very knowledgeable and did a fantastic job when it came to dealing with the claim.’

            Very canny veteran litigator Keith Thomas is knowledgeable and wise whilst showing understanding and compassion for the client.’

            Keith Thomas always has an excellent grasp of the issues. He is thorough with a superb attention to detail and clearly takes the time to really understand his clients needs and to develop a good relationship with them.’

            ‘Matthew Owen is clever, knowledgeable and determined, and has an impressive record of delivering for badly-injured claimants.’

            The highly experienced Ian Rees is a safe pair of hands for any PI claim. He is able to identify the salient points in any claim and is adept at ensuring the best possible outcome for his clients.’

            ‘Kirsty Meech has shown herself to be an excellent communicator and is conscientious, responsive and friendly.’

            Work highlights

              Mackenzie Jones Solicitors

              St Asaph-based firm Mackenzie Jones Solicitorshas a very good understanding of PI matters’ and provides a partner-led service to local North Wales-based clients. The ‘very thorough’ Anna Mills Morgan is a ‘safe pair of hands‘, including in the context of RTA claims.

              Practice head(s):

              Anna Mills Morgan

              Testimonials

              It is a very good and reliable team to work with and has a very good understanding of PI matters.’

              Anna Mills Morgan has an exceptional eye for detail.’

              The very thorough Anna Mills Morgan is excellent and offers a very experienced and safe pair of hands.’

              Work highlights

              • Achieving settlement of a claim ongoing since 2015. The firm managed to persuade the Health Board to admit breach of duty and causation following exchange of reports from a Gynaecologist, General Surgeon, Care of the Elderly expert and a Care expert.

              NewLaw Solicitors

              Regularly working alongside the firm’s welfare officers, the ‘hardworking and knowledgeable‘ team at NewLaw Solicitors is effectively able to handle a tremendous range and volume of personal injury claims. The firm has ‘real expertise in motor accident claims’, with many lawyers handling work in the area, running the gamut from relatively minor injuries through to those involving life-changing issues. ‘Very experienced litigator’ Lisa Samuel takes the lead on many of the more serious injuries suffered in an RTA context and is praised for her ‘excellent practical judgment on claims’. Darren Hackley-Green, who is ‘studious and fastidious in his approach’, and the ‘astute’ Aled Davies are also regularly involved in complex in RTA matters, with the former also adept at advising on matters involving cross-jurisdictional issues. Cenric Clement-Evans specialises in accidents in the workplace, including hearing loss and asbestos exposure issues; he also adds value to clients by his ability to conduct matters in Welsh and English. Hilton Obery leads the firm’s spinal injury team and also regularly handles other cases of the utmost severity; he is also noted for his empathetic approach, helping clients in the rehabilitation process, including helping to purchase accommodation and adapt properties. Nicola Edwards oversees the firm’s overarching specialist claims team which encompasses serious personal injury claims, occupational and public liability work, as well as clinical negligence matters – an area where she is praised for her ‘thorough and compassionate approach’.

              Practice head(s):

              Nicola Edwards (Specialist Claims)

              Testimonials

              It is a large firm that benefits from the breadth and depth of knowledge within its specialist teams that can be drawn on by all fee earners.’

              It is a hardworking, knowledgeable, friendly and professional outfit.’

              Solicitors are very knowledgeable in all aspects of the law and take great time and effort to explain everything in an easy to understand manner.’

              Real expertise in motor accident claims, especially serious and multiple injuries.’

              Hilton Obery did everything possible to achieve a positive outcome for our case. He was always available to talk to and offer advice whenever we needed it.’

              Darren Hackley-Green is very personable and authentic. He walked me through the process at every stage and helped demystify the legal jargon and the laborious bureaucratic process. He is particularly studious and fastidious in his approach to obtaining the latest and most pertinent legal information.’ 

              Darren Hackley-Green has a great depth of knowledge exemplified by the broad nature of the cases he handles.’

              Lisa Samuel brings very good attention to detail and client care skills to claims. She is a very experienced litigator who has excellent practical judgment on claims.’

              Key clients

              National Accident Helpline

              Ageas

              RCN

              FMG Legal

              BMA

              Work highlights

                Slater and Gordon

                ‘Very knowledgeable and well practised in the industry’, Slater and Gordon has a strong grounding in handling personal injury and clinical negligence matters and is ‘unafraid to litigate difficult cases to trial’. A ‘first-class lawyer in every respect’Yvonne Agnew spearheads the firm’s clinical negligence offering which has wide-ranging expertise in handling cases, including those of the utmost severity. The team is also able to undertake cases for those lacking the financial means, by virtue of its Legal Aid franchise; in addition it is also able to assist those lacking the mental capacity through the provision of its in-house Court of Protection service. Able to draw from a ‘large knowledge base of specialist clinical negligence matters’, Julia Reynolds manages the catastrophic injury team and has particular expertise representing clients in obstetric cases and those involving paediatric brain damage. Lorraine O’Brien is ‘very pleasant to work with and experienced in handling difficult cases’, including on behalf of the firm’s large roster of union clients. At an associate level, Lara Bennett is ‘well-suited to handling high-value cases’, including birth injury claims, fatal accident issues and amputation claims, and the ‘hardworking and caring’ Kelly LLoyd Davies is ‘forthright and dedicated‘. On the personal injury front, Andrew Owen heads up the serious injury team, which regularly handles brain and spinal injury cases and is also well-regarded for handling claims brought under the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority. The office is also well-versed in handling occupational disease matters, including as it relates to industrial disease, an area that John Browne is particularly accomplished. Nicholas Collins is also recommended.

                Practice head(s):

                Andrew Owen  (Personal injury); John Browne  (Industrial Disease); Yvonne Agnew  (Clinical Negligence)

                Testimonials

                The outstanding team handles complex and high-value clinical negligence work with dedication, with care and with competence.’

                It is a large team that is very knowledgeable and well practised in the industry.’

                They aren’t afraid to take a risk and litigate difficult cases to trial.’

                The first-class Yvonne Agnew is very reassuring and keeps you involved step by step.’

                Lorraine O’Brien is very pleasant to work with and experienced in handling difficult cases.’

                The hardworking and caring Kelly Lloyd Davies is exceptional and is able to explain complex issues in clear language.’

                Lara Bennett is well-suited to handling high-value cases. She has a good eye for detail, and always has fantastic relationships with clients, who trust her implicitly.’

                Sarah James was excellent when I either spoke to her or emailed her with a query she always responded in a very quick and timely manner. She made me feel that I was her main client even though she had many.’

                Work highlights

                • Successfully settled a case for a relatively young claimant in an amputation case.
                • Successfully settled a case involving difficult issues on causation.
                • Advised a client in a case involving not only physical injuries but also a loss to senses.

                Thompsons Solicitors LLP

                Able to call upon the expertise of a ‘great range of talented individuals’ from the firm’s Cardiff and Llanelli offices, Thompsons Solicitors LLPhas significant expertise in high-value and catastrophic injury claims’, including those involving brain injuries and spinal cord damage. The firm derives many of its instructions from its deep institutional trade union ties; Anthony Welsh works closely with the firm’s trade union clients and has helped many members secure favourable settlements and judgements in the context of road traffic accidents and accidents at work. Led by the ‘incredibly knowledgeable, calm and caring’ Amanda Jones, the team also has an excellent success rate for clients (and their families) in asbestos-related litigation, leveraging the ability to ‘use local and national knowledge to run claims effectively and efficiently’. Cardiff-based associate Matthew Jones has significant expertise advising private and trade union member clients which have been injured due to GP, surgical and dental negligence. David Coulthard leads the  personal injury group.

                Practice head(s):

                Matthew Jones (Clinical Negligence); David Coulthard (Personal injury); Amanda Jones (Asbestos)

                Testimonials

                Great range of talented individuals. The team has significant expertise in high-value and catastrophic injury claims. The solicitors support their clients and their families from the outset of the claim and understand the impact injuries can have on a claimant and their family.’

                Thompsons has a wealth of experience of asbestos claims. Its practitioners are able to use their local and national knowledge to run claims effectively and efficiently.’

                The team in Llanelli is particularly underrated, despite providing an invaluable service to clients throughout Wales and the south-west of England. It has a very high success rate and can easily compete with firms with far higher profiles in terms of its knowledge of asbestos-disease claims.’

                ‘Amanda Jones is, without doubt, one of the premier asbestos litigators in Wales. Her knowledge (gathered over many years) of potential industrial sources of asbestos exposure in the South Wales area truly is encyclopedic. Amanda is a very experienced litigator and has conducted asbestos claims over many years.’

                Amanda Jones is incredibly knowledgeable, calm and caring.’

                Matthew Jones has been great with us throughout, it is wonderful to deal with someone that has such empathy and humanity. We feel like real people, not just a case number on somebody’s long list of clients.’

                Key clients

                Unite the Union

                Unison

                Fire Brigades Union

                Public and Commercial Services Union

                Rail Maritime and Transport Workers Union

                ASLEF

                Prison Officers Association

                National Association of Prison Officers

                University College Union

                USDAW

                Work highlights

                • Significant settlement for a clinical negligence case whereby the claimant suffered a below knee amputation.
                • Successfully secured a settlement for a claimant in a clinical negligence case arising out of failure to diagnose and treat an epidural abscess, leading to severe spondo-discitis and severe compression of the cauda equine.

                Watkins & Gunn Limited

                Drawing upon the expertise of lawyers from varying degrees of seniority spread across the firm’s Cardiff, Newport and Pontypool offices, Watkins & Gunn Limited is able to cost-effectively resource a range of personal injury matters for clients, ranging from slip and trip accidents through to more specialised expertise relating to industrial disease and military deafness. Team head Clive Thomasleads from the front’ and regularly ‘achieves the positive resolutions of claims’ for trade union member clients in employer liability matters, as well as clients seeking redress in complex multi-track cases including fatal accidents and brain injury cases. Jonathan Wellington handles clinical negligence work alongside his personal injury caseload.

                Practice head(s):

                Clive Thomas

                Testimonials

                Excellent range of work undertaken across all areas of personal injury with a particularly strong background in Trade Union work maintained over many years.’

                The Firm has a medium sized team which includes specialist practitioners with a range of seniority and experience with the more junior fee earners dealing with the lower value/more straight-forward cases and the more senior fee earners dealing with the higher value work.

                Clive Thomas – leads from the front, trusted by lay and professional clients alike to achieve positive resolutions of claims.’

                Clive Thomas prepares his cases well, has a good rapport with clients and is good at negotiating with opponents.’

                Key clients

                Bakers Food & Allied Workers Union

                Community union

                GMB Union

                Work highlights

                • Acted in a challenging cross-jurisdictional fatal RTA case involving young man from the UK on a social trip to the Republic of Ireland.
                • Represented a steel worker involved in an explosion at work causing smoke inhalation and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
                • Acted for a machinist who suffered the traumatic amputation of his right index and middle fingers.