Firm Profile > Duncan Lewis Solicitors > Milton Keynes, England
Duncan Lewis Solicitors Offices
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Duncan Lewis Solicitors > The Legal 500 Rankings
The 'really supportive and very efficient' family and child care team at Duncan Lewis Solicitors is well known for its cutting-edge work across a wide range of family and children matters. The practice specialises in domestic abuse, unusual divorce cases, emergency applications to freeze parties’ assets and female genital mutilation protection orders. It also handles financial matters, prenuptial and cohabitation agreements. The practice is headed by six directors spread across four offices: Adeeba Naseem, Alia Lewis and Ravi Kaur Mahey are based in Harrow; Sheena Donlon and Sara Upton lead the Barnet office; Krina Parmar splits her time between Milton Keynes and Luton.
‘The individuals at Duncan Lewis stand out due to their genuine commitment and desire to help very vulnerable people as well as high-net-worth individuals. No matter who you are, you receive the same level of service and client care as all other clients‘.
‘They are very personable while remaining professional. There’s a family feel about the firm rather than being overly corporate‘.
‘I trust the advice they are giving as they are knowledgeable‘.
‘Hardworking team who fight hard for their clients. Amongst the lawyers I have worked with, they have no hesitation in working over and beyond what might normally be expected‘.
‘The main strengths of the Duncan Lewis firm are the team work and the effectiveness of their legal service to children‘.
‘The practice has been understanding and extremely clear on what to expect through a very sensitive case‘.
‘Alia Lewis is empathetic, very efficient and has good judgement‘.
‘Alia Lewis is personable, effective and organised and I greatly appreciate her attention to detail‘.
‘Adeeba Naseem is fantastic lawyer whose knowledge on international cases is second to none‘.
‘Ravi Mahey offers good advice and I always feel like she knows what she is talking about‘.
Immigration Tier 2
The immigration team at Duncan Lewis Solicitors 'is highly experienced with a wide range of excellent practitioners' who are best known for undertaking a steady stream of Legal Aid work representing individuals in all aspects of personal immigration, asylum, human rights and public law matters. It also has expertise in judicial review immigration claimant cases. Key advisors include Bahar Ata, Ahmed Aydeed, Tamana Aziz, Toufique Hossain and Zofia Duszynska.
‘The immigration team is highly experienced with a wide range of excellent practitioners. They are able to cover all areas of immigration and asylum law with a high degree of competence. They have a great eye for detail and are always looking for the best way to advance their client’s cases.‘
‘Duncan Lewis are exceptional at taking cutting edge human rights and immigration cases. They have taken more ground breaking cases than any other firm.’
‘Tamana Aziz is supremely experienced with a broad immigration practice. She is excellent with clients and always prepared to go the extra yard. She is also always keen to try out novel points, whilst at the same time being commercially astute.‘
‘Toufique Hossain has built up a powerful and effective team of some of the UK’s brightest young talent.’
Social housing Tier 2
Manjinder Kaur Atwal leads the housing and property litigation group at Duncan Lewis Solicitors. The firm, which is the largest supplier of legal aid in England and Wales, primarily acts for vulnerable tenants. Its team handles the entire gamut of contentious social housing issues, with particular expertise in possession and unlawful eviction, judicial reviews challenging local authorities and Equality Act defence cases. Solicitor Adrian Smith is recommended for homelessness issues and unlawful evictions.
‘The firm is able to deal with a wide range of cases in an efficient and comprehensive way‘.
‘They can handle time-sensitive or emergency cases‘.
‘The team members are highly professional and knowledgeable about even difficult areas of social housing law‘.
‘Partners and associates are always on hand to respond to the changing dynamics of a case‘.
‘Manjinder Kaur Atwal stands out; she has a keen eye for anticipating new challenges and a strong record for bringing complex judicial review challenges‘.
‘Manjinder Kaur Atwal is a knowledgeable and professional housing law solicitor who will work hard for her clients’s housing law rights‘.
‘Manjinder Kaur Atwal is fearless and ready to get her hands dirty on behalf of clients‘.
‘Manjinder Kaur Atwal always goes the extra mile for her clients and responds calmly and efficiently to emergency situations‘.
‘Manjinder Kaur Atwal is a formidable opponent‘.
The 'experienced and knowledgeable' clinical negligence team at Duncan Lewis Solicitors specialises in brain injury matters including cerebral palsy and cardiac claims, as well as securing significant settlements for clients. The practice group is led by 'excellent' Rebecca Thomas.
‘Rebecca Thomas is extremely diligent and great with both clients and experts. She is all around great to work with.’
‘It is a very good team of people who were informative and kept me updated’
Personal injury: claimant Tier 3
Duncan Lewis Solicitors handles an array of personal injury work with particular specialism in fatal road traffic accidents. The team is currently representing a number of people in a high-value public inquiry, where it is advising on all aspects of public law and personal injury matters. Julie Leslie in Dalston handles employer negligence work in which the client has suffered severe disability. Rebecca Thomas heads the practice.
‘The team’s instructions were thorough, relevant and helpful.’
Professional negligence Tier 3
Duncan Lewis Solicitors covers a broad range of professional negligence work concentrated in the construction and engineering sectors with additional niche expertise in claims against financial advisors. The team acts for a diverse client base, especially vulnerable individuals, which often seamlessly overlaps with the firm's other practice groups such as personal injury. Key figures include Sobashni De Silva and Anthony Okumah, who jointly lead the team based in Harrow.
‘Sobashni De Silva is an exceptionally thoughtful and able litigator.‘
‘They are unusually well organised with a team of strong communicators.’
‘The team is tenacious in pursuing and protecting the clients’ interests and position.’
Crime: general Tier 4
Duncan Lewis Solicitors provides the full range of criminal law services, but is particularly notable for its work with vulnerable clients, including those with mental illnesses as well as youth clients. The firm also operates a large, serious crime practice, with a particular focus on gang-related violence and drug offences. Rubin Italia heads the team from the Harrow office and is most notable for his work involving the defence of insanity in addition to business crime cases.
‘The team prioritises their clients to ensure that they are given the most appropriate support and guidance throughout.‘
‘The Duncan Lewis’ crime team go above and beyond in client care.‘
‘Each time I have engaged with this firm they are efficient, knowledgeable and available to answer queries.‘
‘Duncan Lewis are remarkable for the fact that, despite being a large firm, they provide a personal service and give exceptional attention to detail to every case they deal with.‘
‘Rubin Italia has very good empathy with clients, and provides excellent advice.‘
‘Simon Connolly’s knowledge of the law relating to confiscation is unparalleled and would put a great many counsel to shame.‘
Immigration Tier 1
'Second-to-none in the Welsh publicly-funded arena', Duncan Lewis Solicitors' 'extremely friendly, approachable and committed team of activist lawyers' handles a broad range of immigration, asylum and nationality matters, including high-profile claimant judicial review matters. 'Efficient, patient and reliable' team head Vinita Templeton excels at judicial review matters, and is regularly successful for private- and publicly-funded clients in cases where appeal rights had previously been exhausted.
‘The team is extremely experienced in all areas of immigration and asylum law.’
‘They are very knowledgeable and are committed to furthering the rights of immigrants and to progressing the law in this area.’
‘Vinita Templeton has a wealth of experience in all areas of immigration law and is particularly committed to helping vulnerable clients.’
‘Vanessa Delgado is creative in her arguments and meticulous in her preparation.’
Court of protection Tier 2
Duncan Lewis Solicitors has a multi-disciplinary team that advises on mental health, community care, clinical negligence and public law. The group has strength in cases where there is overlap between the Mental Health Act and the Mental Capacity Act as well as deprivation of liberty safeguards. It routinely advises vulnerable clients and their families on best interest welfare decisions relating to residence, contact and medical treatment. It is also skilled at advising on property and affairs disputes in the Court of Protection and the High Court as well as assisting clients and their carers on other issues such as how to receive help from social services. Alex Peebles and Rachel Caswell are the names to note.
‘Alex Peebles is leading a team that can do work from the most basic section 21A to the most complicated section 16 case. It has great experience in cases where the Mental Capacity Act and the Mental Health Act collide‘.
‘Alex Peebles is excellent, hardworking and has excellent judgement‘.
‘Alex Peebles is thorough and makes sure that I understand things clearly‘.
‘Alex Peebles is legally brilliant; really intelligent. His analysis of the legal issues in a case is first-class‘.
‘Rachel Caswell has been helpful and realistic – fully prepared to fight the appropriate points but also willing to give clients unpalatable (but correct) advice when their case is weak‘.
‘Helen Cummings is efficient and knowledgeable, as well as personable. She is also committed to and experienced in this area of work‘.
‘Helen Cummings works tirelessly to ensure that cases are presented to the highest standard. She deals with each case with the care and attention as though it were her only case‘.
‘The team is hardworking and imaginative. It is results driven but without losing focus on being client friendly‘.
‘Duncan Lewis’s commitment to its clients is second to none. The team always goes the extra mile for its clients’.
Family: Birmingham Tier 2
Duncan Lewis Solicitors advises on all aspects of matrimonial and separation issues, including divorce and ancillary relief. Its team also excels in assisting clients with emergency situations, such as those involving non-accidental injuries and domestic abuse. Other specialisms include international child abduction cases, special guardianship and care orders. In addition, it has a niche practice in forced marriage protection orders. Richard Gray and Krina Parmar are recommended.
‘It is a cohesive and supportive team that goes the extra mile when it comes to case preparation and client care. Not only are their senior solicitors exceptionally skilled, knowledgeable and motivated but they provide excellent training for their junior staff‘.
‘The team always goes that extra mile‘.
‘The care team is exceptional. The team is very client focussed and fundamentally always prepared to go that extra mile to get the best possible outcome for clients‘.
‘Has a realistic and up front approach and manage clients’ expectations well’.
‘Richard Gray leads a team very well. He knows when to fight a case but also know when to accept offers that are on the table’.
‘Sarah Rashid is a superb, robust solicitor who is client focused and tirelessly endeavours to obtain the best result for her clients‘.
Immigration Tier 2
Duncan Lewis Solicitors fields a large team nationally. In Birmingham, it is known for acting for claimants in significant immigration (including related judicial reviews) and asylum matters. Niche specialisms include representing vulnerable clients/victims of torture or trafficking in asylum and human rights matters, as well as immigration cases involving detentions. Ahmed Aydeed and Sangita Shah are the names to note.
‘It is one of the ‘go-to’ firms for immigration. The number and diversity of its cases means that it is able to pick up on systems challenges and wider challenges to policies and law in the UK‘.
‘DL has some excellent individuals who are prepared to go the extra mile for clients and provide a truly excellent service‘.
‘Ahmed Aydeed is a fantastic lawyer with in-depth knowledge of the area of immigration and trafficking law. He has a great sense of strategic litigation and is a very clear legal mind and thinker‘.
‘Ahmed Aydeed is very tenacious, committed and keen. He will absolutely go to the limit for his clients and is not afraid to tackle novel legal points‘.
‘Ahmed Aydeed is very experienced in immigration and trafficking law and is a very clear thinker‘.
‘The team led by Ahmed Aydeed is excellent. Good team and excellent paralegal support. Knowledgeable and thorough‘.
Social housing: tenant Tier 2
Duncan Lewis Solicitors' social housing team is mainly spread across offices in Croydon, Dalston, Harrow and Lewisham. It covers the full range of housing disputes, including disrepair cases, possession proceedings involving Equality Act defences, homelessness appeals and judicial reviews. The firm's commitment to access to justice is reflected by its significant involvement in pro bono work, and it is also acting for a number of participants in the Grenfell Tower inquiry. Manjinder Kaur Atwal is assisting an assured tenant with defending a possession claim and bringing a counterclaim against a landlord property development company, as well as the sole director of and shareholder in the landlord. Atwal is also defending a client against a possession claim concerning a shared ownership property under Article eight and Article 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights in a potentially precedent-setting case concerning the role of social landlords in possession proceedings for shared ownership property brought by a mortgagee. Other recommended individuals are Dianne Cowie, James de Vere Moss, Chinedu Orogbu, Bernadette Chikwe and Subbiah Sivapunniyam.
Social housing Tier 3
The 'friendly and responsive' six-strong team at Duncan Lewis Solicitors has a focus on acting for tenants in legal aid funded matters, including on reviews, appeals and judicial review proceedings relating to homelessness, disrepair, succession for tenants and neighbourhood disputes. The team acts for a wide spectrum of clients throughout south Wales.
‘The team has a caring attitude’
‘Knowledgeable and understanding’
‘The very enthusiastic Christopher Simmonds really knows his stuff’
‘Lynda Reid is bright and pragmatic’
Duncan Lewis Solicitors acts on judicial review claims challenging the treatment of vulnerable groups, with specialist expertise in representing migrants, asylum seekers, detainees, people with disabilities and LGBT prisoners. The team regularly acts on challenges to government policies and bodies including the Home Office, with recent actions concerning the treatment of religious minorities in the prison system and the unlawful detention of migrants. A high-profile matter saw Toufique Hossain challenging the Secretary of State for the Home Department’s failure to investigate abuse at the Brook House Immigration Removal Centre. Further mandates involved judicial review challenges to HMRC and local authorities regarding tax and levy disputes. The firm is also involved in challenging the government’s reduction to legal aid funding.
‘Toufique Hossian has built a strong team with clear aims dedicated to improving the rights of migrants within the detention system and victims of trafficking‘
‘Highly experienced individuals with the ability to deal with every aspect of a public law claim‘
‘One of the best law firms in the country for the cross-over between immigration, administrative and public law‘
‘The future of legal aid will benefit from the lawyers Toufique Hossian has trained‘
‘James Packer is outstanding; very intelligent, very knowledgeable and very committed‘
‘Kate Newman is a bright star for the future – a mature and wise solicitor‘
‘James Packer has great judgement and he always keeps his eye on the bigger picture‘
‘Kate Newman is extremely dedicated and highly recommended for complex judicial review claims‘
Duncan Lewis Solicitors has a particular focus on immigration, asylum, migrant workers and refugee rights work, handled by a team of specialists which includes the 'impressive' Toufique Hossain and Zofia Duszynska, who are based in the Harrow office. The team is also adept at judicial reviews and conducting emergency injunctions for their clients. Tamana Aziz advises on business immigration and public law expert Jamie Bell is praised for his ability to 'quickly demonstrate care, commitment, openness and warmth'.
‘Duncan Lewis is one of the leading legal aid law firms in the country. They are involved in many of the most important cases concerning immigration and human rights.’
‘Duncan Lewis’ team have a wealth of experience in unlawful detention challenges. They have excellent contacts with experts and NGOs, are on top of changes in practice and policy, and bring creative and important challenges, which develop the law in this area and have a meaningful impact on an extremely vulnerable group.’
‘Toufique Hossain has done a fantastic job of building his team, identifying high-profile strategic litigation and running it well. He is an excellent strategist.‘
‘Toufique is great, very commercially minded and a tenacious lawyer.’
‘Never before have I experienced such diligence, rigour, passion and genuine care as Jamie Bell provides.’
Crime: general Tier 4
Duncan Lewis Solicitors' 'hardworking' and 'committed' team covers a range of serious crime matters, including cases involving high-value money laundering, fraud, large-scale drugs conspiracies, sexual offences and murder. Hardeep Dhaliwal, Rubin Italia and Nicholas De Freitas share leadership of the practice.
‘Hardeep Dhaliwal runs a very tight ship; he has great people skills and is a formidable solicitor‘.
‘Rubin Italia is an extremely talented lawyer with a wonderfully warm and kind manner. Clients love him and completely trust his judgement‘.
Family Tier 5
Duncan Lewis Solicitors has a broad range of expertise. It has an established Islamic and Shariah law department that specialises in Islamic divorce and financial settlement. The practice also has considerable expertise in other areas such as representing domestic abuse victims under legal aid to advising on complex financial matrimonial matters. It routinely advises on complex children law matters and deals with emergency applications to freeze parties’ assets in both the High Court and the county courts. The team is also well versed in obtaining female genital mutilation protection orders.
‘Duncan Lewis has a broad breadth of experience and knowledge. It is able to represent any client who comes through its door whether that is someone who is a victim of domestic abuse and financial control or through to the super wealthy‘.
‘It represents those in most need and does this with integrity. The solicitors always appear well supported by other staff‘.
‘Alia Lewis is very efficient and competent. She has vast knowledge and is an excellent advocate in court. She is also sensitive and supportive to children and adults who have special needs‘.
‘Alia Lewis works hard, is extremely diligent and extremely knowledgeable. She is also very personable and warm‘.
‘Adeeba Naseem provides realistic and practical advice whilst remaining empathetic. Clients adore her because she fights fiercely for them, whilst managing their expectations appropriately‘.
‘Ravi Mahey is outstanding‘.
‘Have worked with Emine Mehmet and Ravi Mahey who are very efficient, tenacious and have excellent insight into the needs of the client‘.
‘Ravi Mahey was very professional and Alia Lewis was excellent at keeping me on track’.
‘Laila Bhunnoo is very efficient, knowledgeable, and hardworking‘.
‘Laila Bhunnoo is very helpful and knowledgeable. Laila very much has the best interests of the child at the forefront of her work and is excellent at advocating on their behalf’.
Personal injury: claimant Tier 5
Duncan Lewis Solicitors handles a wide range of complex and often high-value personal injury cases, and has a niche specialism in accidents at work claims. Acting against local authorities for slips and trips in public space, road traffic accidents as well as asbestos-related illnesses are some of the team's other areas of specialism. Julie Leslie, whose expertise includes life-limiting injuries, heads the Dalston office; while the team based in Harrow is led by Rebecca Thomas, who has experience in dealing with claims relating to fatalities.
‘It is the breadth of work that the firm as a whole undertakes that makes the team unique.’
‘It gives personal attention to clients of every description, is far removed from the ‘factory’ experience so common to many other firms and blends compassion for injured and often vulnerable clients with diplomatic realism to guide them towards sensible settlements.’
‘The personal injury team is able to draw on the knowledge of other teams so as to best advise their clients.’
‘Rebecca Thomas knows what needs to be done in order to gather what is required to best present a case.’
‘Julie Leslie understands that her clients come from a wide variety of backgrounds, and that many of them have difficulty participating in the litigation process. She appears to work tirelessly to guide them through the process, without ever expecting too much from them.’
‘Shabana Massood is learning fast and undertakes work well above her years with considerable success.’
Duncan Lewis Solicitors houses an 'extremely large and effective team of lawyers where all aspects of immigration and asylum law are covered.' The firm has a large judicial review claimant practice, representing vulnerable claimants on immigration and civil liberties. It is well-versed in personal immigration, asylum, human rights and nationality law. The firm handles a significant portion of publicly funded work, handling a range of issues such as detention, bail, deportation, appeals and EC law. The team offers specialist expertise in representing vulnerable clients, such as victims of torture or trafficking, on asylum and detention-related matters, and is regularly engaged on politically sensitive cases. The team is also instructed by high-net-worth individuals on PBS applications and appeals. The business immigration team is instructed by SME clients on PBS matters, sponsorship licence applications and it also represents high-net-worth individuals on Tier 1 entrepreneur and investor visas. Director Toufique Hossain is an 'inspirational leader' and has developed a 'very talented and committed team'.
The team is incredibly friendly, supportive and hardworking.
Vicash Ramkissoon is fantastically supportive; he has superb communication skills and is able to find solutions when barriers emerge.
Jamie Bell is very hardworking; he is compassionate, passionate and always gives 100%.
Fahad Ansari is incredibly committed and dedicated to each and every client.
The firm has a strong and large immigration team which is capable of handling all kinds of cases.
Sulaiha Ali has the courage to confront difficult and complex cases, the skill to deliver first class representation, and the diligence to get the best outcome possible.
Kawther Al-Aaraji is intelligent and careful in her professional practice.
The firm has a very strong presence in this area of the law and it makes a notable contribution to the field.
Howard Cheng is incredibly hardworking and competent.
Stefan Vnuk is an exceptional lawyer; he is utterly dedicated and committed to his clients and this work.
Zofia Duszynska has great experience in trafficking cases and is a real fighter for her clients.
The team is highly effective in bringing and maintaining cases against the Home Office.
It is a leading firm in immigration and asylum matters.
The firm’s unique strength is that it has highly experienced individuals who are able to deal with every aspect of a claim.
James Packer is a great tactician; he has great judgement and he always keeps his eye on the bigger picture.
The firm is committed to promote and pursue the human rights of the clients it represents.
Duncan Lewis Solicitors > Firm Profile
Duncan Lewis Solicitors, established in 1998, serves both corporate entities and private individuals from a number of offices across England and Wales. Employing over 600 personnel, Duncan Lewis is accredited with the Investors in People Gold Accreditation Quality Standard Mark, and one of the first to achieve the Law Society’s Lexcel accreditation in 1999, which they have since retained.
Duncan Lewis practices in over 25 areas of law and as the largest legal aid practice in the UK, 70% of the firm’s client base is publicly funded. They hold 11 franchises in: actions against public authorities, child care, clinical (medical) negligence, community care, crime, family, housing, immigration, mental capacity/court of protection, mental health, public law and welfare benefits. Serving publicly and privately funded individuals and corporate entities, Duncan Lewis is committed to providing a reliable and practical legal service to ensure access to justice for all.
The firm is dedicated to excellence in staff training and development and they are permitted by the Law Society to offer close to 100 training contracts in any given training period. They take pride in their commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion; currently 60% of the firm’s staff are from an ethnic minority and its workforce speak over 50 languages; ensuring their staff are able to best serve the clients and communities they assist.
Type of work undertaken:
Immigration, Public Law, Civil Liberties and Human Rights: The Duncan Lewis public law department carries out both publicly and privately funded work, representing in immigration and asylum, regulatory fitness to practice, environment and planning cases. The department has a niche specialism in immigration claimant judicial review matters and costs litigation; unlawful immigration detention cases with high-net claims for damages; immigration removal cases; prison law claimant; and the provision of social welfare services.
The department also expertly represent vulnerable clients/victims of torture or trafficking in immigration detention-related matters. The department also have a high level of experience assisting with asylum applications, in-country asylum and appeals, and experience in all aspects of judicial review claimant work, including obtaining emergency orders and other interim relief to prevent breaches of human rights; following up judicial reviews with actions for damages in both the County and High Courts; and successfully pursuing judicial review matters to the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court.
Court of Protection: Duncan Lewis’ dedicated Court of Protection team offer sensitive and in-depth assistance with the preparation of deputyship applications, preparing powers of attorney, the health and welfare of an individual lacking capacity, financial issues, and disputes both domestic and international relating to powers of attorney and deputyship applications.
Business Immigration: As one of the UK’s leading immigration firms, Duncan Lewis offers assistance in numerous business immigration matters including the right to work in the UK; Tier-2 visa applications and appeals; student and graduate visas; spousal visas; and visa overstays. Their specialist business immigration solicitors will advise businesses and individuals on any changes to UK immigration law during Brexit negotiations and following the UK’s departure from the EU. They offer a full service to SME business clients on all aspects of the Points-Based System (PBS), sponsorship licence applications, and immigration strategy/compliance advice.
Family, Matrimonial and Child Care: The Duncan Lewis family and child care department consists of a number of solicitors who have achieved the Law Society’s Children Law and Family Law Advanced accreditations, and specialises in all aspects of family and both private and public children law matters. The department holds a niche practice in representing victims of domestic abuse and has experience in handling complex divorce and financial matrimonial matters relating to the breakdown of marriages or relationships. They also have an established Islamic and Sharia Law department which specialises in Islamic divorce, Islamic financial settlement and mehr claims under English Law.
Children / Public Law Matters: The team has a broad practice representing parents, guardians, family members and children through guardians in children public law proceedings. They conduct cases on behalf of the official solicitor and are regularly appointed to represent babies and young children. The department has extensive experience representing very vulnerable clients in matters involving parents with mental health issues; young children in care proceedings that involve severe non-accidental injuries; sexual, physical and emotional abuse; drug and alcohol misuse; neglect; factitious illness and rare illness. As a direct result of the team’s diversity they are regularly appointed by guardians to represent children in culturally complex care cases.
Children / Cross-border disputes: The firm conducts high-profile international child abduction cases and engages in wardship proceedings for the return of children taken out of the jurisdiction as well as cross-border care proceedings. It is one of only a small number of firms that are on the International Child Abduction and Contact Unit (ICACU) referral list.
Housing: The housing department represents both landlords and tenants and has niche expertise in possession, disrepair, and unlawful eviction cases. It also has a significant presence in County Court possession duty schemes throughout London, enabling them to specialise in defending social tenants in possession and unlawful eviction cases. They offer representation in all proceedings including reviews, appeals and judicial review proceedings relating to homelessness, succession for tenants, and neighbourhood disputes against local authorities.
Criminal Defence: Majority of the solicitors within the firm’s crime department are police station representatives, and a large number are highly experienced higher court advocates who have experience in providing advocacy in serious matters, including murder and rape. The department has a significant practice defending clients in serious and complex criminal cases, particularly gang-related crime, including drug importations. They also have expertise in representing clients that have significant mental health problems in insanity defence cases.
In addition, the firm has established practices in motoring law, prison law, and actions against public authorities, and are able to advise on appealing a conviction or sentence.
Commercial Litigation and Dispute Resolution: Duncan Lewis has acknowledged expertise in advising corporate clients on litigation matters, as well as advising private individuals in cases where litigation is an option. The litigation and dispute resolution team provide clear and concise legal advice to resolve commercial disputes for both clients based in the UK, and international businesses. The team works with clients to create a goal focused vision, prepare strategies and successfully execute solutions to deal with a dispute either by ADR or Court Litigation, whilst minimising cost and risk.
Clinical (medical) Negligence: The clinical (medical) negligence team has significant experience acting in an array of claims, varying from accident and emergency failures and GP negligence claims, to misdiagnosis and wrongful death claims. They also act for individuals who have suffered profound and permanent brain, spinal, or neurological injuries and associated disabilities as a consequence of failings in medical care by both the NHS and private hospitals.
Personal Injury: Duncan Lewis’ personal injury practice has extensive experience representing clients who have sustained injuries as a result of a range of accidents, including accidents at work, road traffic accidents, accidents suffered abroad, children’s accidents and many more. A particular focus of the practice is acting in claims on behalf of victims of fatal injuries. Other broad specialist areas include claims against local authorities for slips and trips in public spaces; occupiers’ liability; and asbestos related illnesses.
Other areas of law covered: Business Crime/Investigation; Charity; Commercial Property Services; Community Care; Debt and Insolvency; Education Law; Employment; Mental Capacity; Mental Health; Regulatory and Compliance Law; Welfare Benefits; Wills, Probate and Tax.
- Supreme Court success in the immigration nationality case of Hysaj & Ors, R which significantly changed the case law on deprivation and nullity of British Citizenship under the British Nationality Act 1981.
- In a judicial review against the Lord Chancellor, Duncan Lewis has successfully challenged the blanket refusal to provide legal aid funding for judicial reviews where permission was refused on the papers. The result will assist legal aid providers representing some of the most vulnerable in society and should in turn enhance access to justice.
- The firm are the successful claimant in a claim for judicial review of the Legal Aid Agency’s refusal to backdate legal aid certificates. Their contention in the litigation is that the Legal Aid Agency and Lord Chancellor have failed to recognise that the legal aid regulations must contain an implied power to backdate certificates, or are ultra vires. In response to that claim, the Government has agreed, in open correspondence, to amend the Civil Legal Aid (Procedure) Regulations 2012 to expressly allow for legal aid certificates to be backdated to the date of application for legal aid.
- In June 2019, clients NN and LP have settled their claims with the SSHD conceded that their policy – which allows identified victims of trafficking to receive support for only 45 days following a conclusive grounds decision – is unlawful and incompatible with the European Convention on Human Trafficking (ECAT).
- Acted in the 2017 immigration Court of Appeal matter of LC (Albania) which led to the Home Office to acknowledge that out of date country guidance evidence had been relied on in error by the Home Office and Courts for over 5 years to dismiss domestic violence, trafficking and sexual identity related asylum claims from Albania.
- In July 2017, acted in a Libya country guidance case that successfully challenged removals to Libya, based on the lack of state protection for civilians. It became an authoritative precedent that anyone from Libya, regardless of the region they are to be returned to, would be at risk of return contrary to international and EU law.
- Acted in a lead immigration judicial review challenge that led to the High Court ruling that the ‘Fast Track Procedure Rules’ used by the Home Office to consider asylum cases until 2014 were unlawful. The case has enabled more than 10,000 asylum seekers to potentially request to have their cases reconsidered.
- Represented torture victims in an unlawful detention claim that successfully challenged the Home Office’s “Adults at risk in immigration detention policy”. Consequently, the High Court declared the Government’s immigration detention policy for torture victims to be unlawful as it wrongly allowed many who had been recognised as tortured overseas by ‘non state actors’ to still be detained. The Home Office was ordered to review its policy on incarcerated torture survivors and release those unlawfully detained as a result.
- Acted in an immigration detention case where the Home Office was found to have acted unlawfully by locking up a Kenyan asylum seeker in segregation, in a so-called “punishment room” for too long. Despite several thousand people being placed in immigration detention segregation every year by the Home Office, this case was reported to be the first challenge regarding the use of segregation in immigration detention centres.
- Advising two unions, the Locum Doctors Union (LDU) and Healthcare Professionals Union (HPU) in relation to allegations that NHS Improvement (NHSI) continues to instruct NHS Trusts, contrary to its own guidance, to apply a blanket determination that all locum doctors and nurses are inside IR35 so that National Insurance and Tax had to be deducted at source.
- Represented the M, in a case concerning her four children. M, worked as a secretary for the X High Commission. The family entered the UK with diplomatic rights and privileges prior to M leaving that employment. There were two key issues in the case; the first concerned the court’s jurisdiction to make final care orders in respect of the children if those children continued to have diplomatic immunity. The second consisted of classic welfare issues in children public law proceedings which require threshold criteria to be satisfied. Following intensive legal work, the court further concluded it is in the best interests of the children to return to the care of M following a period of rehabilitation managed by the Local Authority.
- Acted for the tenant in the 2016 landmark Court of Appeal social housing case of Cardiff County Council v Lee (Flowers). The case changed the law, confirming that all landlords, whether social or private, are required to seek the permission of the County Court in order to obtain a warrant of possession for breach of a suspended possession order with costs sanctions if not followed, providing an additional level of protection for tenants.
- Represented the respondent in the 2015 Supreme Court case of Gohil v Gohil, a divorce financial settlement case which established the principles in relation to material non-disclosure and the basis upon which an agree financial consent order can be set aside and the case re-opened if a party has not provided full disclosure at the time of the original trial.
- In 2016, represented the imprisoned convicted killer Joanna Dennehy in her claim for damages on account that her two year solitary confinement in prison breached her human rights.
Key offices across England and Wales include:
London: Barnet, Croydon, Hackney, Harrow, Shepherd’s Bush
Outside London: Birmingham, Bradford, Cardiff, Kent, Leeds, Leicester, Luton, Manchester, Milton Keynes and Swansea.
|Chief Executive Officer||Shany Gupta|
|Managing Director||Nina Joshi|
|Practice Director||Jason Bruce|
|Child Care||Abbid Majeedfirstname.lastname@example.org||02031190846|
|Child Care||Adeeba Naseememail@example.com||02031190220|
|Public Law||Ahmed Aydeedfirstname.lastname@example.org||02072752668|
|Court of Protection||Alex Peeblesemail@example.com||02031141218|
|Child Care||Alia Lewisfirstname.lastname@example.org||02031141193|
|Civil and Commercial Litigation||Anthony Okumahemail@example.com||02031141227|
|Business Immigration||Ayan Yalchinfirstname.lastname@example.org||02072752011|
|Public Law||Bahar Ataemail@example.com||02070147398|
|Wills, Probate and Tax||Caroline Roche||Caroliner@duncanlewis.com||02031141104|
|Child Care||Emine Mehmetfirstname.lastname@example.org||02072752799|
|Action Against Public Authorities||Graeme Rothwellemail@example.com||02072752886|
|Criminal Defence||Hardeep Dhaliwalfirstname.lastname@example.org||02072752029|
|Housing||James De Vere Mossemail@example.com||02072752873|
|Public Law||James Packerfirstname.lastname@example.org||02072752772|
|Personal Injury||Julie Leslieemail@example.com||02072752847|
|Child Care||Kathy Walkerfirstname.lastname@example.org||02072752813|
|Child Care||Krina Parmaremail@example.com||02072752553|
|Child Care||Laila Bhunnoofirstname.lastname@example.org||02070147371|
|Housing||Manjinder Kaur Atwalemail@example.com||02031141269|
|Criminal Defence||Nicholas De Freitasfirstname.lastname@example.org||02031141150|
|Mental Health and Capacity||Rachel Caswellemail@example.com||02072752793|
|Child Care||Ravi Kaur Maheyfirstname.lastname@example.org||02031141102|
|Clinical Negligence||Rebecca Thomasemail@example.com||02031141309|
|Child Care||Richard Grayfirstname.lastname@example.org||02070147306|
|Criminal Defence||Rubin Italiaemail@example.com||02031141129|
|Housing||S K Sivapunniyamfirstname.lastname@example.org||02079238438|
|Child Care||Sara Uptonemail@example.com||07920077026|
|Child Care||Sheena Donlonfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Civil and Commercial Litigation||Sobashni De Silvaemail@example.com||02031141180|
|Child Care||Sophie Frettenfirstname.lastname@example.org||02070147366|
|Business Immigration||Tamana Azizemail@example.com||02031141130|
|Public Law||Toufique Hossainfirstname.lastname@example.org||02031141128|
|Business Immigration||Vicash Ramikissoonemail@example.com||02031141105|
Staff FiguresNumber of UK partners : 50 Number of other UK fee-earners (including consultants) : 519
LanguagesPunjabi Urdu Dutch Afrikaans Hindi Bangla Polish German Russian Lithuanian French Norwegian Turkish Bulgarian Farsi Twi (Ghanaian) Swedish Gujarati Albanian Italian Croatian Spanish Bosnian Macedonian Greek Welsh Czech Slovak Arabic Hungarian Cantonese Romanian Malay Swahili Tamil Marathi Filipino Portugese Amharic Bengali Creole Dari Pashtu Kurdish Shona Somali Telugu Yoruba
MembershipsLaw Society of England and Wales Resolution CILEx Association of Lawyers for Children ELA (Employment Lawyers Association) Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL)
Top Tier Firm Rankings
- South East Family: Beds, Bucks, Herts, Middx
- South East Immigration
- South East Social housing
- South East Clinical negligence: claimant
- South East Personal injury: claimant
- South East Professional negligence
- South East Crime: general
- London Court of protection
- West Midlands Family: Birmingham
- West Midlands Immigration
- London Social housing: tenant
- Wales Social housing
- London Administrative and public law
- London Civil liberties and human rights
- London Crime: general
- London Family
- London Personal injury: claimant
- London Immigration