At Irwin Mitchell ‘the prevailing culture is one of high standards of service, commitment to progressing clients' cases and keeping them informed'. Stephen Nye deals with all types of serious injury cases from adult and paediatric brain injury to limb loss, chronic pain and fatal accident claims. Hilary Wetherell specialises in brain injury, polytrauma and complex high-value fatal accidents and coronial law. Alida Coates is another key individual who heads the Midlands workplace illness team. Luke Daniels is ‘always on top of the detail of each case’ and spearheads the firm’s abuse practice. Philip Banks heads the international serious injury team. The associates at the firm are also well-regarded.
Personal injury: claimant in West Midlands
Stephen Nye; Luke Daniels; Alida Coates; Philip Banks
Other key lawyers:
Christopher Hurlston; Tom Fletcher; James Riley; Jatinder Paul; Simon O’Loughlin; Rebecca Hearsey
‘Luke Daniels, the lead partner, is very knowledgeable and approachable. He is actively involved in quality assurance and ensures that staff have the resources, training and support they need to provide the high standards expected. This was particularly evident during lockdown’.
‘Across the range of cases (from the most complex, Supreme Court outings to County Court matters), probably the most important travel law personal injury practice in the country. A team comprising star partners and stars of the future with superb human resource. A justifiably large market share. Superb in every way’.
‘Philip Banks is an established stellar presence with a calm gravitas that impresses and reassures lay clients and strikes fear in to the heart of opponents. He has seen it all, he has done it all and is as at home before the Supreme Court (and Court of Justice in Luxembourg) as he is in the High Court’.
‘James Riley is a rising star. He has great judgment and an infectious enthusiasm for cross-border personal injury work. A superb young lawyer. Jatinder Paul is also a Supreme Court veteran in cross-border personal injury work. Thorough, conscientious and a dedicated problem-solver’.
‘Simon O’Loughlin is adept at handling some of the most complex travel personal injury cases. The Defendant’s guns may be firing, but Simon keeps marching resolutely towards them. He is loved by his clients. Christopher Hurlston and Tom Fletcher are excellent practitioners. They are responsive and helpful when difficulties arise and have a lovely manner with clients’
‘Philip Banks and Stephen Nye – all know the work backwards and achieve great results for their clients. They are the best serious injury PI firm , by miles , in the Midlands. Irwin Mitchell is, undoubtedly, the premier league player in the West Midlands. Should be the only choice for seriously injured Claimants in that area. The resources and strength in depth is second to none’.
‘Rebecca Hearsey is the definitive authority on fatal accident claims. Bereaved families would be well advised to look no further than Rebecca. This is a complex area in which many Solicitors have a limited understanding. Rebecca has an encyclopaedic knowledge and an empathetic approach to bereaved families, when they are at their most vulnerable’.
‘Stephen Nye is a rottweiler when fighting for his clients, who are individuals who have suffered the most serious and catastrophic accidents. The Solicitor who you would want in the trenches with you on the most difficult of cases‘.
The 'hugely experienced, well prepared and organised’ Rankeshwar Batta heads the department at Anthony Collins Solicitors LLP. This department ‘prioritises client care’ and has ‘solicitors who go the extra mile for their clients’. It has many leading names such as newly-promoted partner Ann Houghton. David Evison is recommended for his niche expertise in abuse and Human Rights claims for both children and adults. The ‘friendly and approachable’ group excels in all aspects of personal injury work and frequently handles cases of maximum severity/catastrophic injuries. Victoria Fullilove is highly regarded for her broad range of experience in this area.
Other key lawyers:
Ann Houghton; Victoria Fullilove; David Evison
‘Ethically the firm is of the highest standard, the firm practices diversity amongst its staff. Its staff are all highly professional and dedicated to the interests of their clients. They are tremendously empathetic to their individual client’s needs’.
‘The absolute professionalism and care for the clients. All staff are professional at all times. The team leader Mr. Batta leads the team in an excellent manner’.
‘ACS are very knowledgeable in the personal injury field. They are very thorough in the work they have supplied thus far. Their strengths are communication be that via email, letter or telephone. We are updated on a regular basis on the ongoing claim’.
‘We are NOT a number in the eyes of Rankeshwar Batta and Victoria Fullilove. They are very warm and friendly individuals with 30 years of knowledge and expertise in the personal injury field. They have shown us compassion, empathy and tremendous support over the years, putting our fears, worries and anxieties to bed’.
‘Victoria Fullilove is a caring and compassionate senior associate, whilst also being bright and proactive. Ann Houghton is very methodical and tactically astute. She is a new partner and definitely one to watch’.
‘Innovative, creative litigators who always go the extra mile. Consistently secure excellent results. Build very close bonds of trust with clients and a very strong team ethic. One of the best teams in the region’.
‘Ranke Bhatta and Victoria Fullilove are all superb file handlers. An excellent team. Very bright and committed to getting the best results possible. Pick the right battles in litigation and an approach underscored by pragmatism’.
‘Rankeshwar Batta is a force of nature, with huge in depth knowledge of the market place, great tactical acumen and wonderful client care skills. He leads the team by example and has created a wonderful collective spirit within the team, helped by the tremendous Victoria Fullilove who is definitely one to watch’.
- Advising on a complex accident at work in relation to issues relating to contributory negligence, mental capacity of the client, behavioural changes of the client affecting litigation and support beyond just securing compensation in order to bring the matter to a conclusion to the satisfaction of all parties concerned.
- Acting on an unusual case involving the Coroner, Local Authority Regulatory Services and the Health & Care Professionals Council regarding the death of an individual whilst taking part in a charity white collar boxing match.
- Acting in a case concerning the death of an individual in a road traffic collision – complex dependency claims involving medical causation, life expectation and loss of services.
FBC Manby Bowdler LLP
The 'professional and dynamic’ team at FBC Manby Bowdler LLP has 'excellent listeners who are sympathetic and hardworking’. The ‘thoroughly organised’ team is co-led by Tim Gray and Susan Todhunter. It is recommended for its work on all types of personal injury claims from minor whiplash to serious brain injuries, amputations and spinal injuries. Todhunter has a special interest in acting for brain injured clients and is skilled at handling multiple injury claims on behalf of severely injured child and adult claimants. Senior associate, Adam Wilson, is also recommended.
Tim Gray; Susan Todhunter
Other key lawyers:
Adam Wilson; Sharaz Khan; Michelle Hartshorn
‘Sue Todhunter makes this firm unique. Sue is fully invested in your case, she is professional, sympathetic, understanding. Nothing was ever too much trouble’.
‘Sue Todhunter. Empathetic, great listener. Clearly an expert, hard working and driven to get the best outcome for us. Took over from a previous solicitors and simply blew me away, showed how all solicitors should work’.
‘Sharaz Khan was friendly and professional. Sharaz made me feel reassured. Sharaz negotiated a higher settlement amount, which I was grateful for’.
The ‘always committed’ team at Higgs LLP is lauded for ‘leaving no stone unturned in getting the best result for its client’. It is led by Andy Shaw (who ‘works incredibly hard') on a wide range of personal injury claims. Shaw has a special interest in complex orthopaedic injuries, brain injury, spinal injury and amputation cases. It was pleased to add Simon Stanfield to its ranks from Simpson Millar LLP. Steven Santy receives many plaudits for his handling of claims on behalf of those who have suffered major traumas and has 'great empathy and patience'.
Other key lawyers:
Steven Santy; Simon Stanfield; Claire Burnell; David Erwin
‘Higgs have some very good work and they have a great team of both lawyers and benefits specialists and other support teams. Claire Burnell is a sympathetic case handler who fully supports her clients and works hard in their best interests. She is also a formidable fighter and a feared opponent’.
‘Andy Shaw and Steve Santy lead the team by example. It is obvious how client and rehabilitation focussed they are and that seems to permeate down through the team ‘.
‘Excellent, approachable, down to earth team. Emerged as one of the leading PI firms in the region. Strong local presence and adept at building up strong relationships with counsel and client. A pleasure to work with and I can see them going from strength to strength in dealing with bigger and more complex claims’.
Dawn Humphries heads a ‘friendly and approachable’ team at Lanyon Bowdler. ‘The entire team is client focussed and will not hesitate to go the extra mile even if the costs of doing the same are not recoverable’. Humphries leads the catastrophic injury team that frequently advises on complex brain and spinal injuries. Debbie Humphries regularly represents clients who have sustained life changing injuries. Newly-promoted partner Phillip Roberts, has particular expertise in accident at work cases. Karen Clarke is another name to note for her specialism in road accident claims and Animal Acts claims. Neil Lorimer has now retired.
Other key lawyers:
Debbie Humphries; Phillip Roberts; Karen Clarke
‘This team have wide ranging skills and provide a very good service. They have a very personal touch with their clients. They are very approachable and supportive‘.
‘The team headed by Dawn Humphries immediately helped us understand the ability to take a claim forward but was also very clear on the potential pitfalls. We always felt and were assured there was a whole team there to help and support us and our claim’.
‘Phillip Roberts has been extremely thorough and supportive through the whole claim process. He always made himself available via, phone, email or video call to answer any queries, concerns or provide relevant updates. Really pleased with his hard work and help throughout the course of the claim’.
‘The team at Lanyon Bowdler are very easy to talk to and are always there to help when needed. No question went unanswered.’
‘They actually listened and go through everything thoroughly explaining any jargon’.
‘Phil Roberts – attention to detail is second to none. Friendly and approachable manner’.
‘We have found there to be a wide range of skilled professionals employed within this practice. The teams of solicitors, led by very accomplished Partners, make themselves readily available and willing to travel widely. Dawn Humphries is highly committed to providing a first class service’.
‘Very professional and thorough good communicators detailed pre-trial preparation when necessary. Responsive, professional, warm and engaging’.
- Acted for a claimant who was injured during the course of his employment after falling down a stairwell void. This resulted in him sustaining life changing brain injury involving 47 fractures to the right temporal bone and organic injury to the frontal lobe. Awaiting a pathways meeting and case is still ongoing.
- Acting for a claimant who had worked at the same company for 18 years and sustained stress-related injuries. This matter is of significant importance to the client, as he thought he had a job for life with the company, before being forced out, also medical evidence indicates it is unlikely he will be able to return to an employed role, though he has recently set up his own small business.
- Acting in a case whereby abuse was inflicted by a Catholic Priest who was the Priest where the client’s family attended church; the Church and Priest were also connected with the school he attended. The client, who is now a middle-aged man, instructed the firm having reported the abuse to the Police. Negotiations to settle are ongoing involving significant levels of compensation.
The vastly experienced Karl De-Loyde leads the serious injury team at Thompsons Solicitors LLP. He regularly overseas high-value cases where there are catastrophic injuries typically valued in excess of £1m. Victoria Kingscote is another senior serious injury lawyer who frequently handles cases involving head and brain injuries as well as multiple orthopaedic spinal injuries and fatalities.
Other key lawyers:
Victoria Kingscote; David Gauler
‘The team is one of the strongest teams in the West Midlands and they can compete with any firm nationwide’.
‘Victoria Kingscote is the standout individual. She is very practical, is immensely practical, tenacious and clients love her’.
‘Thompsons Serious Injury team is a sector leader in trade union PI work, handling some of the largest and most serious industrial and road traffic accidents for union members’.
‘The team is comprised of members dedicated to fighting for union clients and will often take on and runs cases others would not. The team is well balanced and very experienced across the spectrum of high value PI claims’.
‘Karl De Loyde – Partner. An incredibly tenacious lawyer, always willing to take on difficult cases or points and see them through. Highly experienced in exceptionally high value/ catastrophic cases’.
‘David Gauler – Associate. A brilliant technical lawyer who is often able to spot legal arguments others may not. Victoria Kingscote – Associate. A very capable lawyer, matched with excellent social skills who is able to handle the most challenging and difficult clients’.
‘An excellent, versatile team with eager and enthusiastic fee earners who deal with cases in an empathetic but determined manner. Core work remains their trade union work. A down to earth team, who excel in problem solving and getting the best result possible on the available evidence’.
‘Thompsons have a strong ethos of putting the client first. Karl de Lloyde is an experienced litigator who has a very personable manner with clients and is not afraid of running difficult cases’.
- Taking over a case from other solicitors for a client who suffered a traumatic amputation of his leg when struck by a vehicle on the hard shoulder of a motorway, the team secured early interim payments and appointed a Case Manager to coordinate a care package to include private prosthetics, and achieved settlement at £3.5m within 18 months.
- Successfully represented the Claimant in the Supreme Court, establishing liability of the Motor Insurers Bureau to compensate victims of uninsured drivers on private land.
- Acted for the widow of a man who was killed in an explosion at the workplace, achieving a substantial settlement.
At the Birmingham office of Clarke Willmott LLP, Philip Edwards is massively experienced in serious injury work. Edwards is recommended for his handling of high-value claims involving amputations, burns, multiple orthopaedic injuries and fatal claims. Rehabilitation is at the cornerstone of the practice and Edwards works closely with several brain injury case managers to assist clients.
Marguarita Tyne; Lee Hart; Kerry Fifield
Other key lawyers:
‘First rate personal injury and clin neg firm with a number of leading lawyers in both fields. Very good use of technology to extract maximum support in their cases from some of the leading medical experts in the country’.
‘Philip Edwards – Phil Edwards one of the star personal injury lawyers in the country. Knows the work inside out. Undertaken to a first rate standard consistently, always putting needs of client first. Regularly instructed in cases of maximum severity, including upper and lower limb amputations’.
‘Philip is a very caring and yet determined and when necessary tough negotiator. Always builds strong and close working relationships with his lay clients’.
‘Phil Edwards is always approachable and an invaluable part of my clients MDTs. He shows great empathy to the clients and nothing is ever too much trouble’.
‘Communication is absolutely spot on’.
‘Philip Edwards is a key member of Clarke Willmott he is a stand out member. He is honest, trustworthy, empathetic and goes above and beyond’.
Chris McKinney spearheads the ‘responsive’ team at Shoosmiths LLP. Its primary focus is on serious injury cases that often have complex liability issues. McKinney concentrates on spinal and brain injuries as well as amputation claims. Senor associate, Kate Price-Marson, is regularly instructed on a diverse range of cases and is well-regarded for her work on serious injury and high value catastrophic injury claims.
Other key lawyers:
‘I believe what makes Shoosmiths unique is its depth of highly professional staff. In my experience they have excelled from start to finish. The team who dealt with my case had an excellent list of contacts that could assist in my needs’.
‘My case was headed up by Chris McKinney, his depth of knowledge in personal injury claims and rehabilitation was extremely vast. From start to finish I felt comforted that Chris Mckinney and his team had my best interests in hand. Anytime I wanted to speak to Chris I had his personal mobile phone number’.
‘Shoosmiths have been very thorough in detail whilst also being very empathetic and supportive at the same time. Difficult questions were asked in a way which at times seemed helpful rather than painful. They use only factual evidence and have a very good team of experts backing them up where needed’.
‘May I take this opportunity to thank Chris McKinney and Kate Marsden-Price for all of your support, professionalism and hard work you have put in over the last two and a half years supporting us as a family whilst fighting our corner in order to give dad the financial security he now has moving forward’.
‘This practice really cares about their clients. They take the time to get to know you and understand your case they don’t pressure you into anything and always make you feel comfortable with decisions. I would highly recommend’.
‘Chris McKinney is a very trustworthy gentleman who gives you his honest opinion is always there to guide you and explore anything that you do not understand. Kate is a lovely person who takes time also to explain things to you. Without Chris and his team I wouldn’t have got through my case’.
‘The teams across Birmingham and Northampton are outstanding for clinical negligence and serious injury claims.’
‘Chris McKinney is one of the finest serious injury lawyers in the country. Highly experienced and someone who will never stop fighting for his clients – he cannot be recommended highly enough. Anther standout person is Kate Price-Marson’.
Steven Baylis leads the team at Slater and Gordon that primarily acts for victims of serious and catastrophic road traffic accidents. It is skilled at helping clients who have suffered various injuries such as traumatic brain injuries, amputations, serious poly-trauma injuries as well as spinal fractures. It is also well-placed to advise on fatal injuries.
- Represented a cyclist in a multi-million-pound RTA claim.
- Representing a pedestrian in a seven-figure claim following an RTA.
- Representing a motorcyclist in a claim worth in excess of £2m following a RTA.
Horwich Cohen Coghlan Solicitors
Joe Speed heads the practice with the ‘personal touch’ at Horwich Cohen Coghlan Solicitors. It is well-equipped to handle high-value and sometimes high-profile cases involving catastrophic and serious injuries. The team also acts for clients in inquests and at major public enquiries. It often advises the bereaved families of people who have suffered a fatality.
Other key lawyers:
‘They demonstrate compassion and whatever your question they do not make you feel silly. Joe Speed – I have never felt pressured ‘.
‘A strong team of personal injury practitioners who maintain an excellent caring ethos along with great skill and experience’.
‘Joe Speed is an excellent and caring claimant’s personal injury solicitor, with experience in cases of the utmost severity, and a willingness to take on difficult cases. Corey Smith is a younger team member but with skills above his age and experience and a willingness to take responsibility for substantial cases’.
The ’friendly and well-resourced’ team at Shakespeare Martineau LLP is led by Tony Hannington. It predominantly works on cases with a significant value. Hannington regularly deals with serious injury claims, fatal accidents and dependency claims. Vicky Blodwell also plays a pivotal role in the department.
Other key lawyers:
Vicky Blodwell; Peter Jones
‘Peter Jones continuously pushed to progress the case and provided updates and “next steps” in a timely manner. I was kept abreast of updates and Peter made sure I understood all of the processes and answered any questions I had without technical jargon’.
‘This is a top drawer personal injury team that has a wide range of experienced partners and extremely intelligent assistant solicitors. It is well-organised and has a wide ranging knowledge of the law and practice in personal injury’.
‘Vicky Blodwell is outstanding. She is thoughtful, compassionate and genuinely cares about the outcomes of everything she sets her mind to’.
‘Tony Hannington has been providing inspirational leadership from his role as Head of Lime and it is really clear that he values the contribution each of his team gives, from Paralegal to Partner’.
‘The team is close-knit, highly effective and client focussed. Their client care is first-class’.
‘Tony Hannington has a wealth of experience of personal injury litigation. He is a shrewd tactician and an extremely effective negotiator, always seeking to achieve the very best possible outcome for his clients. A skilled communicator, he has the ability to explain complex aspects of litigation to clients in a readily understandable manner’.
‘Vicky Blodwell also brings vast experience, a sensible approach and first-rate client care and communication skills’.
‘Vicky Blodwell is a very experienced litigator with sound judgement and impressive eye for detail. She works tirelessly for her clients and never gives up’.
- Acted on behalf of a child who was aged 20 months old when she was trapped underneath a reversing car that was being driven by her father whilst the family were on a camping holiday. The team secured privately funded rehabilitation and a large interim payment whilst quantum was investigated.
- Acted on behalf of a lady who was injured when she was 27 weeks pregnant in a road traffic accident. She sustained a brain injury and crush injuries to her lower limbs. Whilst in intensive care, her legs began to swell and she went on to be diagnosed with a skin disorder called lipoedema. The team believes that this is the first case in the world to establish a causative link between trauma and the onset of lipoedema.
- Acted on behalf of a gentleman who was working as a mechanic when a vehicle dropped on top of him. He suffered a head injury and was unable to return to his job. Proceedings were issued and the team negotiated a settlement.
Mike Sutton heads the department at Sydney Mitchell LLP that handles all types of personal injury claims. The group receives a steady flow of instructions on serious work accident claims and accidents which involve significant injuries. Sutton continues to be instructed by bereaved families in cases involving fatal injuries.
‘I feel that Mike Sutton carefully assessed my case, and explained each step of the procedure clearly to me, and the reasons why specific actions were being taken. All significant steps taken were confirmed by letter, but I also received regular emails from Mike updating me on every step’.
‘I do feel that Mike is particularly empathetic and supportive – that has been my experience. He takes on board the feelings of his client, and does his best to achieve the best outcome possible. Mike advised carefully throughout’.
‘Mike Sutton – Hardworking, bright, good understanding of medically complex cases, good rapport with clients, able to challenge expert opinion where appropriate to get to the ‘real’ issues’.
‘A local, friendly firm with exceptionally talented lawyers’.
‘Mike Sutton stands out and is a strong Head of Department. Very talented lawyer who achieves excellent results for his clients‘.
- Advised Client A, a Crane Operator on PI Claim for damage to leg from falling glass. Negotiated a settlement of this claim in the sum of £750K, which is likely to provide for the Claimant’s prosthesis and future care needs.
- The client was injured following a car incident, causing client B to be dragged along for some distance on the car before falling and suffering a serious head injury. The case was listed for a 5 day Trail at Court but settled for £300,000.
- Advised client C who was a passenger in a taxi that was involved in a head on collision when another vehicle came on to the wrong side of the road. Claim value circa £1m.
The Wilkes Partnership is increasingly acting on higher value and more complex cases. Practice head, Annmarie Wilde , covers the full spectrum of cases from accidents at work and road traffic accidents to criminal injuries and accidents in public places.
Other key lawyers:
‘Very knowledgeable, professional and efficient. A lot of care was given to collecting all necessary documents that would be necessary. Listening carefully to what we had to say and not embellishing or making details insignificant. The absolute truth was always sorted’.
‘Our solicitor Mrs Annemarie Wilde was brilliant. In our opinion went above and beyond our expectations. Really caring to do the best and explanations were given so that we understood all procedures etc so we were fully included in all things’.
‘Amazing professional courtesy. Anne Marie’.
‘The team are professional, friendly, approachable and efficient in handling my complex case’.
‘Kate is approachable, a good listener, keen to investigate, and enthusiastic about finding a resolution to the case by enquiring in depth into the claim. She is unafraid to take on unique and new challenges. Kate is patient’.
‘John McDonnell is an established figure in the world of Claimant personal injury’.
‘John has a sound grasp of the fiddly, technical rules, but also applies common sense and pragmatism to his case‘.
‘They are specialists in personal injury claims. They are excellent. They are very good with their contact with the claimants and keeping us updated on any developments of legal cases’.
Police Federation of England & Wales
Community Trade Union