Firm Profile > Switalskis Solicitors > Huddersfield, England

Switalskis Solicitors

Clinical negligence: claimant Tier 2

Switalskis Solicitors are held in high esteem in the clinical negligence arena, both by competitors who recognise the quality and depth of their caseload, and by clients, who benefit from an 'absolutely personal approach'. Jointly led by Suzanne Munroe - 'the driving force behind the success of the firm' and Janet Baker - 'one of the most experienced, capable and successful clinical negligence lawyers in the country' - the practice deals with brain, spinal and birth injury claims, as well as psychiatric injuries and cancer claims among others, while a cluster of smaller specialist teams focus on specific areas, such as inquests and fatal cases, complex and unusual cases as well as lower value healthcare claims.


‘Janet Baker is one of the most experienced clinical negligence practitioners in the country and brings to the firm depth of knowledge and experience as well as leadership.’

‘Suzanne Munroe and Sarah Tipton Walker (along with Janet Baker) head up an exceptional team of clinical negligence specialists who provide outstanding service to their clients.’

‘From the first consultation to the aftercare, Switalskis provide a level of service that is second to none.’

‘The firm is client driven, collegiate, and hard working. They are resolutely not corporate in their approach to work and this reflects in their willingness to run difficult cases.’

‘Janet Baker is one of the most experienced, capable and successful clinical negligence lawyers in the country. I have worked with her in numerous claims by individuals who suffer from cerebral palsy. She is quite simply the best.’

‘Suzanne Munroe has experience, commitment, drive and enthusiasm which results in exceptional client care.’

‘Suzanne Munroe is the driving force behind the success of the firm. She is very experienced and highly regarded in the region.’

‘Sarah Walker is a courageous solicitor, not frightened to take on difficult cases or to argue difficult points on her clients’ behalf, but who is also skilled at working co-operatively with her opponents and fostering opportunities for early resolution. She is very hard working, and always tries to make herself available.

‘Janet Baker is without doubt one of the most experienced, capable and successful maximum severity clinical negligence lawyers in the country. She combines experience and empathy with a superb eye for detail.’

‘Associate Natalie Cosgrove is phenomenal. A force of nature. I have encountered few people who can litigate a case as well as she can. Her clients absolutely love her. She has a real dedication to making life better for people with disabilities. I have never met anyone who worked so hard to understand the types of problems faced by people with disabilities. Most lawyer see their role as being to value a claim and organise the evidence. Natalie sets out to gain a better understanding of her client’s life and apply that to the legal problems that they face. If everybody did this the legal profession would be better for it.’

Crime: general Tier 2

At Switalskis Solicitors, the criminal practice has substantial experience defending vulnerable individuals including young people and defendants suffering with mental health problems; the team has specific practitioners specialising in these niche areas. Michael Devlin heads up the group, Jim Littlehales is an in-house barrister, and Rob Fones has expertise defending clients accused of sexual offences.


Switalskis is efficient, professional and courteous, and looks after its clients by keeping them well informed of proceedings, giving practical advice and ensuring cases are well prepared in good time‘.

The individuals are quick to respond to requests and keep in regular contact with their clients, showing a caring commitment‘.

Personal injury: claimant Tier 2

Switalskis Solicitors personal injury practice operates out of the firm's Doncaster and Wakefield offices, which respectively focus on brain injury/serious injury and child abuse claims. The child abuse team is led by David Greenwood , who is hugely experienced in his field, acting on a series of landmark cases in the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal. Meanwhile, the brain injury team, which is headed by the 'calm, courteous and doggedly determinedMark Hollinghurst, handles claims in excess of £5m concerning profound brain injury and minimally conscious clients.


‘Mark Hollinghurst is a very good lawyer and approaches his cases with care and thought. He has a pragmatic approach to litigation, seeking the sensible and workable outcome rather than becoming fixated upon being right – an admirable quality in a good solicitor. He is nobody’s pushover and his calm manner and courteous style, even in the face of aggression from his opposite numbers, is a reflection of his quiet strength. I have no hesitation in saying that he is more than a safe pair of hands. He knows his stuff. He is doggedly determined – refusing to give up on cases many others had turned down.’

‘Julie Wilkinson is efficient and a pleasure to deal with. She ensures the nuts and bolts are dealt with, without fuss’

‘Switalksi’s is a small firm but provides an excellent service – up there with the big players but with a more personal touch.’

Family: elsewhere in Yorkshire Tier 3

The team at Switalskis Solicitors expanded its South Yorkshire offering during 2018 with Alison Kitchman joining the firm's Doncaster office from Keebles and former Banner Jones Solicitors partner Toby Netting coming on board as Sheffield head of family law. The practice handles divorce, finance and children law matters; Kitchman is collaboratively trained, and Netting is an accredited specialist with resolution for children matters, pre-nuptial and cohabitation agreements and domestic violence issues.


Alison Kitchman is sensible, warm, good and makes sure clients feel comfortable knowing they will be well looked after‘.

Family: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire Tier 4

With notable practitioners in Wakefield, Bradford, Leeds and York, Switalskis Solicitors' family and child care law team is one of the largest in the region and handles the full spectrum of family law issues, including Children Act work and care issues, divorce and relationship breakdowns, financial matters, domestic violence work and forced marriages, with particular experience handling matters complicated by serious allegations of abuse. Razia Jogi and Clare Peckett jointly lead the department; Jogi specialises in issues concerning children, domestic violence, forced marriage and 'honour' violence, and Peckett handles cases relating to unmarried couples. Ranjit Uppal and Lisa Phillips are also key names for children work.


Switalskis is a key name in the market for care and children work, and has really made a name for itself in the local region‘.

Switalskis Solicitors provides expert legal advice and representation to individuals and businesses across the Yorkshire region and beyond. Switalskis prides itself on its ability to offer a comprehensive, highly personal service to clients across 12 locations in North, West and South Yorkshire.

The firm: Established in 1993, the firm’s long-standing ethos is that all members of society should be able to access high-quality advice and representation, especially the vulnerable and those who lack a voice in the justice system. Now one of Yorkshire’s largest legal firms, Switalskis Solicitors brings together some of the region’s most experienced lawyers, who combine their local knowledge with nationally renowned legal expertise in order to deliver a first-class service to their clients.

Switalskis’ teams offer a wide range of legal services, including family law and divorce, advice on wills and estates, criminal law, child care law and conveyancing.

The firm also offers specialist claims advice, alongside other relevant services, to clients who have suffered serious injuries or abuse, including advice on child abuse claims, clinical negligence claims, brain injury and serious injury claims. In addition, the firm has an established Court of Protection team covering matters relating to both health and welfare and property and finances. This combination of services allows the clinical negligence and brain injury and serious injury teams to utilise a dovetailed approach when dealing with cases which require a professional deputy or trustee.

Many of Switalskis’ directors and solicitors are nationally recognised experts within their field, leading growing teams of highly capable and ambitious lawyers. Geographic expansion has also been fundamental to the current and ongoing commercial success of the firm, as the directors have overseen a number of strategic acquisitions in recent years.

Types of work undertaken: Headed up by recognised experts in their field, Switalskis’ specialist clinical negligence, brain injury and serious injury, Court of Protection, child abuse claims and child care law departments have built up reputations reaching far beyond Yorkshire and even the North of England, for the quality and scope of the work they carry out.

The clinical negligence department has particular experience and expertise in the area of complex birth injury claims, including cerebral palsy claims. The notably large team also deals with a wide range of claims relating to injuries suffered as a result of medical negligence, including complex neurological claims, orthopaedic claims, oncology claims, psychiatric claims and fatal claims, as well as providing expert representation at inquests.

The recently acquired brain injury and serious injury team specialises in complex brain injury claims, including acting on behalf of clients who are in a minimally conscious state (MCS). The team works closely with clients, their families and those involved in their care with the aim of providing the maximum rehabilitation and support.

Switalskis’ Court of Protection department is renowned for dealing with complex mental capacity and welfare cases and deprivation of liberty challenges in the Court of Protection, alongside community care challenges and property and finance matters. The recently expanded property and finance arm of the department now includes a Court of Protection panel deputy. The department has particular expertise in assisting people who are affected by learning disabilities, autism, Alzheimer’s, dementia, mental health issues, acquired brain injuries, behavioural needs and communication difficulties.

As a testament to the important and far-reaching nature of the work of Switalskis’ child abuse claims department, the team is regularly instructed to act on behalf of survivors in high-profile cases, including representing victims of the widely reported Rotherham CSE scandal. The team deals with compensation claims relating to child sexual exploitation and abuse against a wide range of organisations and individuals, including local authorities, private care homes and the church.

Other offices: Leeds, Bradford, Huddersfield, Sheffield, York, Doncaster, Knaresborough, Boston Spa, Pontefract, Dewsbury and Honley. Switalskis is able to offer a range of legal services in Goldthorpe in association with Walter Brook & Co.

Department Name Email Telephone
Managing director John Durkan
Family and child care Clare Peckett
Family and child care Razia Jogi
Family and child care Lorrette Law
Family and child care Louise Noblet
Family and child care Ranjit Uppal
Clinical negligence Suzanne Munroe
Clinical negligence Janet Baker
Clinical negligence Sarah Tipton Walker
Conveyancing Sarah Cookson
Child abuse compensation David Greenwood
Mental health law and COP Michael Kennedy
Mental health law and COP Alex Guy
Brain injury and serious injury Mark Hollinghurst
Number of UK partners : 22
Number of other UK fee-earners : 126