Firm Profile > Leigh Day > Manchester, England

Leigh Day
BUILDING C (MAN 35)
CENTRAL PARK
MANCHESTER
M40 5BP
England

Employment: employee/union firms Tier 1

Leigh Day's highly experienced employment practice handles some of the largest and most high-profile matters in this area. The team, which frequently works with the firm's London office, is particularly noted for its work on equal pay disputes. The practice's strength in this area was demonstrated in March 2021 by its successful representation in the Supreme Court of over 40,000 ASDA employees in an equal pay claim made against the company. The team receives instructions from trade unions to represent their members; elsewhere, it also acts for senior executives in unfair dismissal and discrimination claims. Chris Benson, a key figure in the team, became managing partner in 2021. Lauren Lougheed and Linda Wong lead on the practice's equal pay work, while senior associate Mike Cain is highly regarded for his work on group and individual claims, with representing senior executives being a particular focus. Ryan Bradshaw is another key contact, offering broad expertise across areas including holiday pay litigation and whistleblowing.

Practice head(s):

Nigel MacKay; Emma Satyamurti; Lauren Lougheed; Linda Wong

Other key lawyers:

Chris Benson; Mike Cain; Ryan Bradshaw

Testimonials

‘The team is first class in developing legal and procedural strategies. As well as ensuring consistent throughput of work for clients, they regularly take on high quality work in fields such as high net worth clients and complex legal matters in both Tribunal and Civil Courts. They are incredibly flexible and offer great client care.’

‘Mike Cain has huge experience with a Trade Union and litigation background. He has recently developed several new lines of work, including high net worth individuals and a niche practice in discrimination claims against companies in the financial sector. He is open, straightforward and robust in his advice to clients and is not afraid of technically or factually difficult cases.’

‘Associate Solicitor Ryan Bradshaw was professional and incisive in his pro bono work for us. He delivered training on employment rights and legal remedies which was accessible and engaging, and it was evident that he tailored the topics and style for the audience. In arranging the training he was easy to contact, personable and reliable. Attendees have talked about how valuable his training was and how we would greatly benefit from further work from Ryan and from Leigh Day, and it regularly comes up in meetings and discussions.’

‘Mike Cain knew the right questions to ask during initial consultation, which was different to my experience with other firms I had approached. This showed his ability to see some of the intricacies of the case, that were easily missed, by other firms, at first glance. Where others were dismissive, without getting a full picture of the case or me, Mike took the time to understand and gain deeper insight into me, as well as the case. This proved to be helpful for the case and our working relationship. With limited time, Mike went above and beyond to secure representation.’

‘Ryan Bradshaw our main point of contact and a phenomenal solicitor. He always responds quickly. The qualities I particularly value is not only his wealth of knowledge about disability discrimination in employment law, but the extent to which he understands the complexities of our charitable work. He completely understands the specificities of the kinds of discrimination that the people we work with face. This understanding and sensitivity to the topic makes him very easy to work with. For example he may write an advice letter for someone’s employer and his language around the issues will be spot on, exactly as it would be within our sector but beyond what is expected by lawyers. He’s wonderful and I’m very grateful to work with him. ’

‘They are the premier claimant side employment team. They were the first firm to recognise the potential for class action style group litigation on a really massive national scale. They understand the importance of logistics in managing massive group claims. Their experience and knowledge makes them the stand out firm. They have revolutionised the industry.’

‘In the North West: Lauren Laugheed and Linda Wong are both absolutely outstanding. They are a formidable team and it is difficult to comment separately, but Lauren is incredibly focused on ensuring that everything that needs to be done is done. Her commitment and drive has been essential to the retail equal pay claims, the biggest employment claims ever seen in the UK. Linda is a great lawyer, devoted to securing the best outcome for her clients.’

‘Chris Benson, Michael Newman and Lina Wong are all superb. Chris and Michael have excellent strategic vision and Linda is completely on top of every aspect of her cases.’

Key clients

GMB

National Aids Trust

Over 40,000 largely female supermarket employees in ASDA Group equal pay claims

Ahmed & others v Sainsbury’s Supermarkets Limited (Sainsbury’s Group Equal Pay Litigation)

Nationwide Group Holiday Pay Group Claims – Super Multiple

Nigel Furneaux v Strasdin Joinery

Rashid Nix v Green Party of England & Wales

Dr Zuzana Windle

Kwasi Afrifa v Goldman Sachs International

L v G

Personal injury and clinical negligence: claimant

The medical negligence and personal injury teams at Leigh Day focus on high value, complex and serious claims. The clinical negligence practice handles cerebral palsy, brain injury and spinal injury claims, and is recommended for women's health claims including maternal birth injuries and delayed diagnosis of endometriosis. The 'fantastic' Stephen Jones heads the department. On the personal injury side, the group runs cycling, mesothelioma and asbestos, workplace accident and accident abroad claims. Andrew Bradley heads the Manchester office; Kevin Johnson is in charge of the Liverpool team; and Clare Campbell manages the specialist travel litigation team. Helen Ashton exclusively represents claimants with asbestos diseases.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Jones; Clare Campbell; Kevin Johnson; Andrew Bradley

Other key lawyers:

Helen Ashton; Brendan Hope

Testimonials

‘I thought the team were extremely professional and very competent in their field. I felt very comfortable working with the team as they were knowledgeable, thorough, and they keep me up to date with every stage of the claim process. The communication was excellent as I was kept informed of all aspects of the case and next steps.’

‘Stephen Jones is an fantastic solicitor. Very trustworthy, professional and supportive. He explained all the legal aspects of the case in a clear manner. He is very competent and diligent.’

‘The team are young and ambitious and combine a huge enthusiasm for all matters travel-related with excellent results for their happy clients. A campaigning zeal in their approach to litigation gives this team the edge.’

‘Clare Campbell was exception in all areas, friendly, approachable, contactable, professional and caring.’

‘Kevin Johnson is the most thorough and hard-working solicitor I know. He has a wealth of experience and is brilliantly organised.’

‘Helen Ashton’s thorough yet caring questioning was so appreciated by my father and he was so reassured that Helen would deal with his claim in the way he wanted. Her bedside manner was just lovely and she made a difficult subject very easy to deal with. Helen’s service from start to finish was excellent and we could not have asked for better. I would unreservedly recommend Helen to anyone.’

‘Brendan Hope is very patient, without being patronising. He has exceptional knowledge about medical matters. He explains things very thoroughly and made me feel in control of my case to an appropriate level. He is very friendly was well as professional.’

‘Kevin Johnson has forgotten more about asbestos disease than most practitioners know…. brilliant with clients – encyclopaedic knowledge and fights hard for his clients.’

Administrative and public law Tier 1

Leigh Day stands out for its varied work in the field of public law, encompassing immigration and refugee issues, social welfare work, environmental matters and healthcare regulations. The team is particularly well-regarded for its work on behalf of NGOs, charities and individuals in connection with significant human rights litigation. Team leader Jamie Beagent specialises in contentious matters involving planning and environmental law, in addition to the detention and welfare of immigrants and asylum seekers. The 'strong, clear and articulate' Tessa Gregory specialises in human rights disputes, in which she acts for individuals bringing cases against the state; she is representing the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and Counter Terrorism in her intervention in proceedings challenging the Secretary of State's decision to deprive a young woman of her British citizenship. Benjamin Burrows, who became a partner in April 2020, represents former and current prisoners in various cases, including challenges under the Human Rights Act 1998 and the Equality Act 2010. Emma Jones stands out for her work in major public inquiries, including the Infected Blood Inquiry, while associate Waleed Sheikh is recommended for his expertise in immigration and unlawful detention claims.

Practice head(s):

Jamie Beagent

Other key lawyers:

Tessa Gregory; Benjamin Burrows; Emma Jones; Waleed Sheikh

Testimonials

‘The firm has established itself as a top public law outfit over the last ten years.’ 

‘Tessa Gregory at Leigh Day is an outstanding public lawyer. She has been involved in many leading cases involving welfare and benefits, and has been successful in many of these cases. She has superb strategic oversight, and does brilliant work in obtaining evidence to support her cases.’

‘The LD public law team is the go-to firm for strategic litigation in the public law field. It constantly handles cases with implications far beyond the narrow interests of the particular client.’

‘Tessa Gregory is a brilliant public lawyer. She understands her field perfectly, has exceptional judgment, is highly organised, and builds and leads her team with dedication and aplomb. She is the sort of solicitor that you dream of working with.’

‘The Leigh Day public law team are real experts in public law, with a particular strength in working with NGOs on difficult and ground-breaking cases.’

‘Tessa Gregory. One of the best out there. Strong, clear, articulate and an excellent lawyer and tactician.’

Key clients

UN Special Rapporteur on Counter Terrorism and Human Rights

Wild Justice

Declassified

John’s Campaign

Mencap

Prison Reform Trust

Freedom From Torture

Campaign Against the Arms Trade

Global Witness

Civil liberties and human rights Tier 1

Known for the breadth of its practice, Leigh Day has expertise across the field of civil liberties and human rights including acting on health and social care issues, inquests, abuse and exploitation work, children and vulnerable adult mandates, and privacy, discrimination, immigration and prison matters. The firm is ‘involved in a number of significant cases and has people at all levels who are real experts in the field'. Another key distinguishing factor is its international experience, particularly in Africa, and the practice also has a reputation for bringing complex group actions against the British Government and multinational corporations. Jamie Beagent focuses on issues relating to the detention and welfare of immigrants and asylum seekers. He co-leads the team with Richard Meeran, who specialises in international matters. Also active in the space are Sean Humber, who covers privacy and data breach claims, prisoner rights issues, and environmental, discrimination and information law matters; Sapna Malik, who acts in international personal injury and human rights claims; associate Andrew Lord, who represents survivors of childhood abuse; and associate Waleed Sheikh, who handles immigration detention, deportation and nationality issues.

Practice head(s):

Jamie Beagent; Richard Meeran

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Lord; Sean Humber; Alison Millar; Sapna Malik; Tessa Gregory; Rosa Curling; Waleed Sheikh; Stephanie Hill

Testimonials

‘This is a very high quality team with an enormous hinterland of knowledge and experience’.

‘Stephanie Hill is really very good indeed – we worked on a messy detention claim and having her there was absolutely invaluable’.

‘The strength of the team lies in its knowledge and experience in this field which I think is quite unrivalled. They have been involved in a number of significant cases and boast people at all levels who are real experts in the field, which means that they bring to their cases a confidence and conviction that is not always seen at other firms’.

‘The stand out individuals I would name are Alison Millar, partner, and Andrew Lord, Associate. They are both very hard working and show great commitment to the client’s case, willing to fight difficult points. They both show great practical judgment on cases and are able to think outside of the box in order to break through and overcome difficult hurdles’.

‘They work with some extremely vulnerable clients and are always able to build very trusting relationships with the clients and ensure that the litigation process is made as manageable and intelligible as possible for those clients’.

‘Tessa Gregory is a standout partner – thorough, creative, a real delight to work with. Clients absolutely love working with her. Could not recommend her more highly’.

‘Leigh Day is hands down the best firm I have worked with in my 30 years in this area. There is nothing I can say about this firm of a critical nature. Their partners, associates and support staff are truly exceptional’.

‘They provide a truly first class service ensuring that teams are properly resourced, organised and efficient. Their preparation is meticulous. It is a joy to work with them’.

Clinical negligence: claimant Tier 1

Leigh Day continues to be seen as a 'go-to firm for all types of clinical negligence cases', known for its 'vast experience' and 'absolute tenacity' when approaching matters of the utmost complexity and severity. Birth, brain and spinal injuries, along with fatal claims, form the cornerstone of the group's work. Practice head Suzanne White, who focuses on catastrophic injuries and inquests, is described by a client as 'one of the most committed, hard-working lawyers in the business'. In recent developments, the large and specialised team grew further, welcoming solicitors Amy Cassar-Pullicino and Charlotte Norton from Slater and Gordon, and Ceilidh Robertson from Fieldfisher. There was also consolidation at the partner level, with 'first class' practitioner Anna Brothers joining existing notable names including Sanja Strkljevic , Olive Lewin and Sally-Jean Nicholes.

Practice head(s):

Suzanne White

Other key lawyers:

Sanja Strkljevic; Olive Lewin; Sally-Jean Nicholes; Anna Brothers; Emmalene Bushnell; Maria Panteli; Kirsten Wall; Angharad Vaughan; Despina Kavadas; Ceilidh Robertson; Amy Cassar-Pullicino; Charlotte Norton

Testimonials

‘Leigh Day is definitely in the Premier League of clinical negligence firms. Their solicitors are meticulous and have vast experience of complex cases.’

‘Suzanne White is one of the most committed, hard-working lawyers in the business. Absolute tenacity when securing the best outcomes for her clients.’

‘One of the very best teams in the market. A go-to firm for all types of clinical negligence cases. Excellent lawyers and teamwork across the board.’

‘Olive Lewin exemplifies the quality of the solicitors in this firm by her meticulous approach, leaving no stone unturned.’

‘Suzanne White is a real fighter for her clients but also a Rolls Royce when dealing with experts.

‘Anna Brothers has deservedly been made partner recently – her sparkling sense of humour is incredibly engaging and her work is first class. Angharad Vaughan is super-bright and really goes the extra mile for her client. Maria Panteli is a canny operator and builds a warm relationship with her client. Despina Kavadas is just great – really down to earth but a consummate professional. Sanja Strkjljevic is incredibly polished and impressive – she can be very persuasive.’

‘Kirsten Wall is a dream to work for. Her knowledge of complex medical issues is encyclopaedic and she has a batch of exceptional experts on tap. She is the epitome of competence and efficiency. Plus – the clients all absolutely love her.’

‘Sally-Jean Nicholes takes the time to understand her client’s story and is sensitive to their needs. She is a terrier in pursuit of their claims. She has a good network of trusted medico-legal experts to call on. She is not afraid of asking difficult questions to get to the nub of an issue. She has excellent judgment and powers of analysis.’

Employees/unions Tier 1

Leigh Day has a market-leading reputation for exclusively representing claimants in novel and high-profile group actions and individual claims. Under the joint leadership of Nigel Mackay and Emma Satyamurti, the national team is regularly seen in groundbreaking cases which make headline news. London-based partners Chris Benson and Michael Newman are working with practitioners in the Manchester office to represent over 45,000 supermarket workers (who are largely female) in an equal pay claim against ASDA; this is the largest ever private sector equal pay claim to date. Newman is also handling novel claims against national waste and recycling firm Biffa Waste Services and employment agency Smart Solutions, which have arisen from the largest criminal conviction for modern slavery. In another matter, employed barrister Elizabeth George (who rejoined the firm from didlaw in 2020) is leading a national group equal pay claim against Next. Kiran Daurka, recently promoted partner Paula Lee and associate Annie Powell are among other recommended individuals.

Practice head(s):

Nigel Mackay; Emma Satyamurti

Other key lawyers:

Chris Benson; Kiran Daurka; Elizabeth George; Paula Lee; Michael Newman; Simon Cuthbert; Annie Powell; Nick Webster

Testimonials

When it comes to large scale employment and discrimination litigation for claimants, Leigh Day are entirely without equal. Over the past few years they have concentrated a genuinely impressive pool of talent guided first by Chris Benson and now by Kiran Daurka. They are innovators – they leverage technology like no other firm I know of.’

Thorough and conscientious. The team leads in important cases and is continually recognised for their excellence.’

Chris Benson is calm and practical; Paula Lee and Kiran Daurka burst with enthusiasm and dedication to their cases.’

Annie Powell is a very talented, bright and proactive solicitor. She took on my case fully and was very good explaining the legal position and was prompt in responding any queries I had.

The practice is very large, diverse and well resourced, people are encouraged to have their own interests which leads to a very vibrant and dynamic environment and an exceptional level of commitment by the solicitors. Led by visionary solicitor Chris Benson, this department is thriving and outstrips all other competitor firms.’

Leigh Day have changed the face of employment law over the past 10 years. They have been at the centre of the biggest and most important cases in that period.’

Chris Benson has an incredible instinct for the next big issue. Equal pay, blacklisting, discrimination in public sector pensions, gig economy. Without him, these massive cases may not have happened.’

Key clients

Asda

Uber drivers

Abdar & Others v Morrison Supermarkets Plc

GMB

10,000 police officers v Police Federations

Operation Fort

Tesco

Equal Pay Advisory Service on behalf of the Fawcett Society

Environment Tier 1

With a strong claimant-focused practice, Leigh Day is described as ‘flexible, fearless and fantastic’, representing local communities from the Global South in multi-party actions against large corporations while also handling biodiversity, climate change and planning issues in its domestic practice. The firm aims to change the legal landscape and has achieved significant judgments regarding corporate accountability, particularly when it comes to subsidiaries’ activities abroad. International department head Richard Meeran, whose ‘breadth and depth of expertise is unrivalled', leads the practice together with Jamie Beagent, who is experienced in planning-related environmental issues. Martyn Day continues to be a name of note, leading on some of the practice’s most high-profile claims. The team's partnership ranks have grown to include Paul Dowling, who was promoted in April 2021 and is active in international human rights, personal injury and environmental cases.

Practice head(s):

Richard Meeran; Jamie Beagent

Other key lawyers:

Martyn Day; Daniel Leader; Oliver Holland; Carol Day; Tessa Gregory; Paul Dowling

Testimonials

‘The go-to firm for environmental campaigning work. They have a can-do attitude to taking on cases, making the funding model fit the client, and designing a legal strategy that marries with the campaign strategy and enhances it. Flexible, fearless and fantastic.’

‘Leigh Day is the very best claimant law firm in the international claims area, including corporate accountability, environment and human rights internationally. Their innovative legal claims, their extensive legal knowledge, their care for the clients and their ability to reach good settlements for their clients is deeply impressive.’

‘Richard Meeran’s breadth and depth of expertise is unrivalled. He is clever, brilliant at seeing new ways of crafting a case, excellent at building teams, and a warm and kind person. Dan Leader is brilliant, engaging and intelligent. He is wonderful at taking claims forward, warm and collegial, and trustworthy.’

‘A strong team of committed and enthusiastic specialist lawyers who understand their clients’ concerns and work to support them through complex legal considerations. Flexible options are explored for funding cases.’

‘Carol Day is extremely knowledgeable and experienced in her field, offering a personal approach to each client. She particularly understands and supports NGOs through the legal process.’

‘The team has unparalleled experience in claimant environmental litigation, with a growing expertise in climate change litigation. They are able to provide top advice to clients both legally and practically and they will work around the clock to ensure clients receive the best possible service.’

‘Carol Day’s expertise in environmental law, particularly on biodiversity and wildlife protection, cannot be rivalled. She is also highly familiar with the practical implementation of environmental law on the ground. This gives her an edge in tackling legal cases.’

‘Commitment to the underdog and courage. Willingness to think imaginatively.’

Key clients

Various claimants (Zambia)

The Ogale and Bille Communities (Nigeria)

Kabwe Lead Poisoning Class Action

The Bodo Community clean-up claim (Nigeria)

Various claimants (Cerrejón, Colombia)

Wild Justice

The Wildlife Trusts

WWF

Transport Action Network

Oceana

Seas at Risk – Clean Arctic Alliance

Amphibian & Reptile Conservation

Friends of the Earth

Cycling UK

Personal injury: claimant Tier 1

Leigh Day's 'truly unique' practice 'takes on cases others would not touch and uses them to advance the law and break new ground'; this willingness to handle ground-breaking litigation was illustrated most recently by the firm's involvement with the landmark case of Swift v Carpenter. Sally Moore, who is described by a client as 'one of the strongest lawyers in the field', leads the personal injury department, while Daniel Easton and Harminder Bains jointly head up the dedicated industrial disease team. Richard Meeran oversees the international work which is such a cornerstone of the practice, and for which renowned practitioners Martyn Day and Sapna Malik are particularly recommended.

Practice head(s):

Sally Moore; Richard Meeran; Daniel Easton; Harminder Bains

Other key lawyers:

Daniel Leader; Martyn Day; Sapna Malik; Bethany Sanders; Oliver Holland

Testimonials

‘Leigh Day is truly unique in the personal injury field. The firm takes on cases others would not touch and uses them to advance the law and break new ground. They are totally committed to their clients as well as broader social causes. The quality of the personnel from the partners to junior lawyers to paralegals to admin staff is as good as a Magic Circle firm.’

‘A great team for catastrophic injury claims and taking on difficult high-value claims.’

‘This team is absolutely first rate. They have strength in depth, are able and wiling to cover all levels of work, and there are some absolutely exceptional solicitors within a consistently excellent team of fee earners.’

‘Very experienced claimant industrial disease team. Very committed to clients. Take on difficult cases.’

‘Martyn Day is a total icon. He has seen and done it all and the whole team benefits from his deep experience and instincts. He is charming to work with and compliments junior members of the team whenever it is merited which means team morale stays high when the heat is on. Oliver Holland is a recent new partner whose promotion was totally deserved. He has nous beyond his years and knows which buttons to press to get under the skin of his opponents. Great with clients and super cool under pressure. Daniel Leader brings a super intellectual approach to his cases which are always beautifully prepared and well thought through. He is deeply involved in the business and human rights world and brings this to bear in his cases. Deeply principled and leaves no stone unturned in pursuit of justice for his clients. Sapna Malik is an inspirational lawyer who has worked on some of the most ground breaking human rights litigation. Incredibly conscientious and committed to her cases and clients.’

‘The department is led by one of the strongest lawyers in the field: Sally Moore. No client could hope for a better solicitor. She leads an incredibly strong team, any of whom I would be happy to recommend (and have often recommended).’

‘Harminder Bains is a passionate advocate and utterly determined.’

‘The lead partner I worked with, Bethany Sanders, clearly cared at a personal level as well as at a professional level. She was always aware of the personal challenges I had and adapted her style with empathy and understanding. In addition she worked hard to understand my business and the impacts on the business. We had a working relationship for nearly five years working on the case and she was consistent throughout. Always across the detail and able to adapt to new strategies and navigate the complexity to stay ahead of the defendant’s case. This enabled her to have a strong negotiating position at all times resulting in a settlement considerably higher than I expected.’

Product liability: claimant Tier 1

Leigh Day is regularly involved on the claimant side in prominent product liability cases. Collective redress cases are a key area of expertise, and the team acts for individuals as well as for groups. The team is currently acting in disputes regarding faulty life sciences products, emissions cases and financial products, among others. Bozena Michalowska-Howells, who has more than 20 years of experience in the field, leads the team. Jill Paterson is a key contact for consumer rights matters. Other prominent practitioners are Michelle Victor, Gene Matthews, Thomas Jervis, Shazia Yamin and associate Tina Patel.

Practice head(s):

Bozena Michalowska-Howells

Other key lawyers:

Jill Paterson; Gene Matthews; Michelle Victor; Thomas Jervis; Shazia Yamin; Tina Patel

Testimonials

‘They were extremely diligent in engaging me to understand and plan early steps in a potential case strategy and also outline the value of my experience.  I am grateful for their thoughtful and committed approach.’

‘Extremely impressive attention to detail, patient and clear communications with me as one of a large number of clients (on a group litigation claim), professional and proactive.’

‘Leigh Day have a longstanding history of involvement on behalf of claimants in high-profile and cutting-edge product liability litigation. They are innovative and prepared to seek to extend legal boundaries wherever possible, in the interests of their clients.’

‘Jill Paterson is extremely knowledgeable, commercially astute and always has her clients’ interests in the forefront of her mind.’

‘The team is very well known and very experienced in class actions, and in my experience works to a higher quality of legal analysis and care than most other firms operating in that sector.’

‘Bozena Michalowska is very experienced in cases within this sector and is particularly adept at managing tricky relationships between multiple claimant firms in a class action.’

‘Leigh Day have an almost unparalleled level of experience in relation to product liability. They have a high-profile and broad practice, and a depth of work which means they are singularly well placed to act in the product liability arena.’

‘Tom Jervis is intelligent, diligent and delightful to work with. Jill Paterson is very experienced, knowledgeable and has good instincts. Tina Patel is an excellent lawyer who manages to identify the key points in any claim.’

Court of protection Tier 2

Leigh Day ’s human rights department has a specialist court of protection team with an established practice in best interest cases. The team receives regular referrals from the Official Solicitor in matters relating to deprivation of liberty, contact, residence and sexual relations issues. Jamie Beagent heads the department that acts for the Official Solicitor, professional property and affairs deputies, relatives of protected individuals and charities as intervenors. Anna Moore acts in a variety of health and welfare cases and specialises in cases involving children and vulnerable adults.

Practice head(s):

Jamie Beagent

Other key lawyers:

Anna Moore; Frances Swaine

Testimonials

‘Leigh Day has an excellent team of Court of Protection solicitors. The lawyers are very knowledgeable and dedicated to their clients‘.

Anna Moore is a very good lawyer. She is careful, and thoughtful. She has good judgment’.

‘It has the advantage of  its very high-profile practice in human rights / civil claims alongside its CoP team. The lawyers bring a uniquely ‘human rights focused’ perspective to CoP welfare work. I have instructed Anna Moore who went to exceptional lengths to investigate the evidence and ensure that P was able to participate properly; and gave clear and helpful advice throughout‘.

Senior executives Tier 3

Leigh Day is recommended for its 'skill and robust representation, coupled with real empathy'. Nigel Mackay and Emma Satyamurti lead the group, which negotiates exit packages and restrictive covenants in addition to tackling a range of unfair dismissal cases involving age, race and gender discrimination, often reaching the Employment Appeals Tribunal or involving injunctions. Michael Newman is especially highlighted for his equal pay expertise, and at associate level 'real star' Annie Powell and the 'brilliant' Nick Webster are noted for their abilities across race discrimination claims, sexual harassment issues and senior exit arrangements. Associate Mike Cane (based in Manchester) also attracts praise.

Practice head(s):

Nigel Mackay; Emma Satyamurti

Other key lawyers:

Michael Newman; Annie Powell; Nick Webster; Mike Cane

Testimonials

Provide value for money without compromising quality. Their cases are well prepared, and work well with their barristers as a team to get the best results for clients. I regularly recommend them to clients looking for legal advice. Emma Satyamurti – combines fantastic legal knowledge with a practical approach to running cases in the best interest of clients. Nigel Mckay – one of the best solicitors I have worked with.

Leigh Day are fantastic at acting in claims for individuals against large, well-resourced businesses. They are in no way intimidated and are able to hold a firm line to secure the best outcome for their clients. Nigel Mackay is fantastic to work with.’

Leigh Day have secure controls on electronic communications, billing and confidentially. The lawyers have a wide network of expertise to draw on when necessary both within and outside the firm. They always kept me informed of the status of my case and covered my case when my prime lawyer, Nick Webster, was on leave. Throughout the pandemic the firm maintained a seamless professional service.’

Annie Powell was my rock throughout my entire case. I had complete confidence in her and she guided me in my decision making every step of the way without putting any pressure on me either way. She was always ready and prepared for next steps should things not have gone our way.’

Leigh Day have provided fantastic advice and support to me in a particularly difficult episode relating to a constructive dismissal and discrimination claim. They have amazing expertise in their specialist areas and I feel very fortunate to have found them.’

Nick Webster –  in addition to being a consummate professional and expert in his field, he also operates with a heart and soul. He understands that some of his clients will find entering into litigation a daunting prospect and there have been times when Nick Webster’s calm reassurance has given me strength during episodes of anxiety. Nick never takes his eye off the pivotal arguments and keeps his clients on track by his emphasis on what is and isn’t crucial.’

I worked with Mike Cain (Senior Associate) who was honest, thorough and knew how to negotiate a good exit for me. He calmed my emotions with ease and clearly stepped me through the path to resolution. He explained options, translated jargon and re-charged my ‘fight’ when I felt a bit deflated by a tricky senior exit. He is very good when handling the other side and can stand strong when needed.’

‘Annie Powell is an absolute star. Completely dedicated, always on top of the detail and tactically astute. Knows which buttons to press to get the desired response from the other side.’

Professional discipline

Leigh Day has developed unique experience in professional discipline through its successfully defence of itself (and three of its solicitors) against a high-profile and costly investigation, prosecution and appeal by the Solicitors Regulation Authority between 2014 and 2018.

Travel

Based in Manchester, Leigh Day advises UK claimants on accidents abroad and has a particularly strong reputation for handling cycling-related cases. The breadth of jurisdictions in which the team has experience is another key attribute, with its recent caseload covering Europe, Australia, the Middle East and the Caribbean. Clare Campbell leads the team and handles a varied workload, advising on road traffic accident, accident at work and aviation-related claims. She is supported by associate Joseph Dawson, who is experienced in handling claims stemming from serious accidents, including cross-border litigation.

Practice head(s):

Clare Campbell

Other key lawyers:

Joseph Dawson

Leigh Day is a leading human rights and personal injury claimant firm based in London.

The firm: Leigh Day specialises in many aspects of national and international personal injury and accident work, human rights, clinical negligence, and multi-party actions. Lawyers at Leigh Day are committed to offering an exceptionally high-quality service to all clients. The firm was set up by Sarah Leigh OBE and Martyn Day in June 1987 to represent individual claimants and their families. This remains the firm’s core value as it continues to grow across all departments.

Types of work undertaken
Personal injury: The team acts for clients who have suffered severe and often life changing injuries. This includes cases of severe orthopaedic fractures, life changing injuries such as limb loss and brain and spinal injuries and representing a very large number of bereaved families. The cycling team handles hundreds of claims every year and is the exclusive provider of legal support to British Cycling and British Triathlon members.

Industrial disease: The industrial disease team at Leigh Day not only represent clients who have developed an illness, usually from negligent exposure to asbestos in the workplace, but they also have shaped the law through landmark rulings, including from the Supreme Court, which improve the rights of all negligence victims.

Administrative and public law: The firm undertakes a large number of high-profile judicial reviews. The team has successfully challenged the Government over the implementation of Universal Credit and it represented The Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) in its successful challenge against the UK Government for granting licences for arms to Saudi Arabia.

Clinical negligence: The firm has 30 lawyers representing clients who have been injured, or the families of the deceased, through negligence in a healthcare setting. New head of department Suzanne White is a trustee of the Patients Association and the team works with many other organisations campaigning for patient safety across the NHS and in private practice.

Employment: The employment team at Leigh Day is currently acting for over 40,000 supermarket workers in one of the largest equal pay group claims in history, against the big four supermarkets. The team has also pioneered legal challenges to discriminatory pension schemes in the public sector and is acting for thousands of police officers and hundreds of judges. The team is also involved in claims against Uber and most of the other gig economy employers.

Environment: The firm specialises in claims as a result of exposure to pollution, including radiation, chemicals, pesticides and sewage in the sea. On behalf of Wild Justice, a group led by the naturalist and broadcaster, Chris Packham, the team brought a successful challenge against Natural England over general licences allowing for the mass killing of several species of birds.
The team is at the forefront of the legal fight against climate change on behalf of its clients. It is currently instructed in a challenge to Heathrow’s third runway on grounds that the government failed to consider the Paris Agreement, as well as in a direct action against the Council for the European Union in respect of the damaging CO2 impact of the burning of forests as biomass. They continue to bring judicial reviews of grants of planning permission on air pollution grounds, and we are at the cutting edge of scrutinising the lawfulness of the UK government’s subsidies for fossil fuel projects abroad.

Human rights: The human rights department offers expertise in special needs education, child abuse, confidentiality and planning. The firm represents the family of Molly Russell, a 14-year-old girl who took her own life in 2017 and the human rights team has been representing Molly’s father in his battle against the social media networks for more disclosure following Molly’s death. The team has an outstanding reputation for its work on medical ethical issues and ‘best interests’ cases. The firm has been ground-breaking in its consideration of the impact of human rights on health and social care law.

International: The firm has pioneered legal developments in multi-party cases on behalf of claimants in the UK and overseas, ensuring that large corporations based in the UK face justice in the UK over the actions of their subsidiaries in developing countries. The firm has also been at the forefront of litigation against the UK Government for alleged human rights breaches arising from the UK’s involvement in overseas military operations and the global ‘war on terror’. In addition, the firm has been at the vanguard of modern slavery litigation. The department’s cases emanate from across globe, in particular Africa, Asia, South America and Europe, with the team providing access to justice to thousands of people who would otherwise go without redress.

The work of the international team has established numerous legal precedents, including Supreme Court authority, on issues as diverse as parent company liability and jurisdiction, the remit of English courts to adjudicate on the UK’s actions overseas, the interplay of UN Security Council Resolutions and the UK’s obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights and the duty of care owed to those serving in the British military abroad. The team’s successes go beyond securing compensation, such as in 2018, obtaining an unprecedented public apology from the UK Government for its role in the ‘detention, rendition and suffering’ of its clients Abdul Hakim Belhaj and Fatima Boudchar.

Product liability: The department has been involved in some of the most important product liability cases of the last 25 years. Claims include those against manufacturers of home appliances, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics and food products. They have also acted on behalf of claimants injured in clinical trials. They acted for the family of Natasha Ednan-Laperouse who died following an allergic reaction. The high-profile case led to a change in the law on ingredient labelling which is now known as “Natasha’s Law”. The team are currently acting as the joint-lead lawyers, in the emissions defeat device group litigation against Volkswagen in the UK believed to be the largest group action in the UK.

Department Name Email Telephone
Senior Partner Martyn Day
Managing Partner Frances Swaine
Administrative and Public Law Jamie Beagent
Personal Injury: claimant Sally Moore
Clinical Negligence Suzanne White
Employment Chris Benson
Civil Liberties and Human Rights Jamie Beagent
International Group Claims Richard Meeran
Product Liability Boz Michalowska Howells
Environment Carol Day
Travel Clare Campbell
Court of Protection Sean Humber
Number of UK partners : 44
Qualified Lawyers (including partners and legal execs) : 168
Fee-earners (including paralegals and qualified fee earners) : 297

CLIENT: with Personal Injury department (Industrial Disease)
TESTIMONIAL: My husband was diagnosed with Mesothelioma in February 2019. We live in Australia and after being referred to a company that helps people to deal with the legalities of associated asbestos diseases we were eventually forwarded to Leigh Day for the purpose of making a claim. Most of our dealings were with one lady employed by them. She could not have been more helpful to us throughout the lengthy process which involved my sons as well when my husband died in January 2020. There was so much empathy shown to us all, many phone calls, all done with such care. I am so grateful for that. The claim is now resolved. So yes, I would recommend Leigh Day very highly.


CLIENT: with Personal Injury department (Industrial Disease)
TESTIMONIAL: I worked with Leigh Day Solicitors and Kevin Johnson in particular for a period of 9 months due to my fathers Mesothelioma and I have no qualms whatsoever in recommending them whole heartedly. They were considerate and completely professional in everything they did and their communication was excellent even through the COVID pandemic. At no time did I, my father or mother feel pressured and I was always totally at ease with their assistance and guidance they were truly a godsend at a very difficult time….Thank you Kevin and all at Leigh Day


CLIENT: with Personal Injury department (Cycling)
TESTIMONIAL: Clear, well explained legal advice and an attention to detail on the physical, neurological and psychiatric medical side that vastly exceeded my initial conception of my claim. Leigh Day’s expertise on cycling accidents is second to none. I hope I will never again be in the position where I have been involved in a cycling accident and need to make a legal claim, but, if the situation arises, I will know who I would be asking to represent me.


CLIENT: with Personal Injury department (Cycling)
TESTIMONIAL: After a cycle accident which wasn’t my fault, in which I sustained injuries that required hospital, Leigh Day acted for me to pursue damages against the person who hit me. They were professional throughout and achieved a settlement that I was very happy with.


CLIENT: with Personal Injury department (Travel)
TESTIMONIAL: We had a difficult situation, seeking compensation for a very bad service from a holiday company that had not only ruined our family holiday but also jeopardised our health. Our solicitor from Leigh Day, through her diligence and skilled enquiry, discovered our experience was part of a much wider problem, affecting other people. She negotiated over a long period with the relevant parties who were reluctant to conclude the matter. Professionally persistent, she kept us fully informed and secured for us in the end an offer we were happy to accept. We are very grateful to her, found her very positive to work with and have no hesitation in recommending the company.


CLIENT: with Personal Injury department (Travel)
TESTIMONIAL: We picked Leigh Day at random believing they were a local firm. However, their representative travelled from London to visit us to explain the procedure, take instruction, advise us and to meet us so in the months that followed we had a ‘face’ we were actually communicating with and were soon conversing on first name terms. We had never had any legal representation before and the whole idea was quite daunting but as weeks progressed and all the maze was sorted through for us we came to rely on him and his firm totally. Any query, no matter how small or stupid it might sound we received a reply immediately either by email or telephone if it was more complicated. He had endless patience with us and our Coroner commended him and his firm for stepping in and averting a situation that could have had serious implications when it had been overlooked by everyone else. We have no hesitation in recommending this firm, I don’t know how we would have fared without them.


CLIENT: with Employment department
TESTIMONIAL: I was told just before Christmas that I was being made redundant. It came as a shock and I didn’t quite know where to turn as I had never been through a consultation process before. A friend had recommended Leigh Day and put me in touch with a lovely solicitor by the name of Charlotte Pettman, who handled the situation with the utmost professionalism and expertise. Being told you’re no longer wanted is quite a hard pill to swallow, but thankfully Charlotte had my back every step of the way. She went through everything with a fine tooth comb, pushed back on clauses she felt were unnecessary and confirmed I understood what was happening every step of the way. I really felt she was in my corner. I was super proud of the representation she gave me and I left the organisation with my head held high.


CLIENT: with Employment department
TESTIMONIAL: I am very satisfied regarding the assistance I received from Leigh Day when dealing with my legal matter. Their professionalism has been fantastic and have not enough words to express my gratitude during that experience.


CLIENT: with Clinical Negligence department
TESTIMONIAL: Medical negligence cases are very sensitive and stressful, Leigh day’s partner Suzanne White allayed the stress and gave constant reassurance over the duration. Updating me all the way through, via phone calls and meetings. With confidence she led the case, advised and was honest about all the possible scenarios. Suzanne walked with me every step of the way, and she had an amazing team, all of whom were honest about the realities of going through a case and the emotional strain. Suzanne and her team won and that has changed my life for the better. The win has given me the opportunity to gain control over my life and choices again. A new beginning and for that I am grateful beyond explanation.


CLIENT: with Clinical Negligence department
TESTIMONIAL: Understanding, efficient team run by professionals always willing to be helpful every step of the way. To begin a claim is daunting and they showed empathy and compassion. This helped me decide that this was the team I wanted for my claim.


CLIENT: with Human Rights department
TESTIMONIAL: This is the second time that I have used Leigh Day solicitors, and I have been left very impressed with the service they provide. They are professional, supportive and will always provide the best advice. We needed support with a Court of Protection matter and our solicitor – Ms Anna Moore – was very knowledgeable and experienced in this field, as well as being a kind and understanding individual. If you need support in this field, I would highly Anna Moore and, of course, Leigh Day in general.


CLIENT: with Human Rights department
TESTIMONIAL: We appointed Leigh Day to represent me and my family regarding a very sensitive matter following the death of my daughter. This was so important to have the right representation and I can now tell you, now the case is finalised, that Leigh Day was the right choice. Our solicitor who was not only calming but highly professional, a great communicator with unsurpassable advice and preparation. IF you are having making the choice we had to make, I can’t recommend Leigh Day more highly.


CLIENT: with Product Safety department
TESTIMONIAL: After suffering with food poisoning which was caused by a wedding meal. The whole process from start to finish with leigh day was handled well with good communication and customer service.


CLIENT: with Product Safety department
TESTIMONIAL: I cannot thank Tom Jervis and his team enough for the work they have done in my case. It has taken a number of years to reach a conclusion but they got there in the end with a successful outcome. I found Tom to be professional and approachable. He made the whole process as easy as it could be for me. He always used ‘plain English’ and didn’t try to blind me by legal jargon. Always there at the end of the phone if I needed to talk things over. Thank you Tom.


Leigh Day is committed to the principles of equality, diversity and inclusion. We value the diversity of our colleagues, our clients and the third parties with whom we work. We seek to create an environment where everyone feels included and valued for their unique characteristics, skills and abilities and supported in their needs and responsibilities.

Leigh Day does not discriminate on grounds of sex, age, race, marital status, pregnancy and maternity, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, gender reassignment, sex characteristics, religion or belief.

We have policies in place to support our commitment to equality and diversity and ensure that it is acted upon on a day to day basis. We also monitor the way that we employ and manage our staff and the way that we interact with clients, third parties and suppliers to ensure that our dealings are consistent with our principles.

Some examples of initiatives and achievements include:

  • Thriving and active BAME/ LGBT+/ Women’s/ Disability & Allies Committees/Networks
  • Solicitor Apprenticeship schemes for individuals from under-represented backgrounds
  • Top 100 ranked Stonewall Diversity Champion as part of the Workplace Equality Index
  • Active Bystander training for all staff
  • Unconscious Bias training for senior staff
  • Diversity & Inclusion training for new staff

LGBT+

The LGBT+ & Allies network aims to promote a safe, inclusive and diverse working environment that encourages respect and equality for LGBT+ staff members. The activities of the network include:

  • seminars and events of LGBT+ interest
  • working with external charities and grass roots organisations
  • social events for LGBT+ staff and allies
  • running an LGBT+ book club
  • ensuring the firm’s policies and practices support LGBT+ staff
  • attending National Pride events
  • providing a peer support network for LGBT+ staff

BAME

Leigh Day’s BAME Network was created to promote racial diversity in all its forms. It has the following primary aims:

  • Improve the recruitment and progression of all BAME staff within the firm.
  • Actively encourage diversity amongst our suppliers and networks
  • Education and reflection around the wider race debate including providing a programme of events with guest speakers.
  • Increase accessibility to the legal profession through connections to schools and higher education providers.

WOMEN

This committee’s motto is “An equal world is an enabled world”. Its principal objectives are to:

  • Work towards and support the firm in becoming a signatory to the Law Society Women in Law Pledge.
  • Raise awareness and educate everyone on issues facing women in the workplace and work together towards overcoming them.
  • Empower and support women and girls to achieve their full potential.
  • Actively encourage diversity amongst our suppliers and networks.

DISABILITY & ALLIES

This network’s definition of disability is broad and non-legalistic, encompassing any mental, physical or neuro-diverse health condition that has a significant ongoing impact on a person’s life.

The aims of the network are to:

  • encourage an open, inclusive, accepting, supportive and accessible working environment where everyone feels comfortable to be themselves;
  • raise awareness amongst managers about how to support staff with health conditions effectively;
  • tackle stigma;
  • celebrate human diversity.

The Lex 100 Verdict

‘Making a positive impact’; ‘truly committed to justice and bringing about positive changes in the law’; ‘ethos and values’  - these are just some of the ways trainees describe Leigh Day. Known for its public law and legal aid work, Leigh Day is well regarded for ‘ground-breaking legal work and commitment to helping individual claimants achieve justice against large organisations’. As one trainee puts it, ‘a lot of the firm's work is at the cutting edge and so when I talk to peers at other firms I am proud to speak about our cases and the impact our work is having’. A Lex 100 Winner in three categories – job satisfaction, inclusiveness and social life, Leigh Day takes training and care of its trainees very seriously. Trainees describe a programme with ‘longer seats than many firms, so there is perhaps less variety in a training contract. On the other hand, there is a much greater opportunity to dig into the cases and get an in-depth learning experience in our two one-year seats’. A negative mentioned is the pay but, as a trainee comments, ‘my salary is lower than peers elsewhere, but the trainees go into the role knowing this and accepting that the balance between salary and the work we do is worth it’. If you have an eye on high-profile social justice experience, Leigh Day would be an inspiring place to work.