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Bindmans LLP ranked as top tier firm in the Legal 500

Date: 25 September 2012

The 2012 edition of Legal 500 UK has been published and Bindmans LLP has received excellent reviews. The firm has maintained its position in the top tier ranking for its legal services and many of its lawyers are rated as leading individuals with the legal profession. 

The Legal 500 is an independent guide, and firms and individuals are recommended purely on merit.

Bindmans now has 16 practice areas recommended including seven in the top tier - an increase from 15 last year, with only six in the top tier.

The newly recommended lawyers for 2012 are: Janet Broadley, Emma Cohen, Rhona Friedman, Kate Goold, Roberta Haslam, Melanie Hay, Alla Murphy and Martin Rackstraw.

Bindmans LLP has been recommended as a TOP TIER FIRM in seven practice areas:

  • Administrative and public law
  • Civil liberties and human rights
  • Crime
  • Fraud: white-collar crime
  • Healthcare
  • Immigration: human rights, appeals and overstay
  • Social housing: tenant

Bindmans LLP has also been recommended in the following nine practice areas:

  • Clinical negligence: claimant
  • Court of Protection
  • Defamation and privacy
  • Employment: employees/unions
  • Family
  • Immigration: business
  • Media and entertainment
  • Personal injury: claimant
  • Professional discipline

Five lawyers are listed in the elite “leading lawyers” list, The Legal 500 United Kingdom 2012's guide to outstanding lawyers nationwide.

Administrative and public law - Leading individuals

  • John Halford
  • Stephen Grosz QC (Hon)

Civil liberties and human rights - Leading individuals

  • John Halford
  • Saimo Chahal
  • Stephen Grosz QC (Hon)

Healthcare - Leading individuals

  • Saimo Chahal

Immigration - Leading individuals

  • Alison Stanley

Real estate - Social housing: tenant - Leading individuals

  • Paul Ridge

22 lawyers are recommended in The Legal 500 United Kingdom 2012 editorial (listed below)


  • Kate Goold
  • Martin Rackstraw
  • Katie Wheatley

Fraud: white-collar crime

  • Martin Rackstraw
  • Rhona Friedman

Defamation and privacy

  • Tamsin Allen

Professional discipline

  • John Halford
  • Stephen Grosz QC (Hon)

Employment: employee/union firms

  • Shah Qureshi


  • Alison Stanley
  • Emma Cohen
  • Liz Barratt
  • Roberta Haslam

Clinical negligence: claimant

  • Alla Murphy
  • Jon Crocker
  • Siobhan Kelly

Personal Injury: claimant

  • Jon Crocker
  • Lynn Knowles
  • Siobhan Kelly

Court of Protection

  • Emma Cohen
  • Jon Crocker
  • Liz Barratt
  • Lynn Knowles
  • Saimo Chahal


  • Janet Broadley
  • Melanie Hay

Administrative and public law

  • Gwendolen Morgan
  • John Halford
  • Saimo Chahal
  • Stephen Grosz QC (Hon)
  • Tamsin Allen

Civil liberties and human rights

  • Chez Cotton
  • John Halford
  • Paul Ridge
  • Saimo Chahal
  • Stephen Grosz QC (Hon)


  • Gwendolen Morgan
  • John Halford
  • Saimo Chahal

Social housing: tenant

  • Paul Ridge

Media and entertainment

  • Tamsin Allen

The full details are:

Crime, fraud and licensing
Crime: first tier firm; Kate Goold, Katie Wheatley and Martin Rackstraw are recommended.

Bindmans LLP provides a ‘first-class’ service.  It represented an academic who was prosecuted for drug offences after a 15-year-old school girl died having taken ecstasy at his house during an unsupervised house party.  The team has also been acting for an alleged Polish gang member in relation to his extradition to Poland for murder and other offences.  Kate Goold ‘works 24/7’.  Martin Rackstraw and Katie Wheatley [are] to take over as joint heads of the criminal law team.

Fraud: white-collar crime: first tier firm; Martin Rackstraw and Rhona Friedman are recommended.

Bindmans LLP provides a ‘first-class service’. Key individuals include ‘indefatigable’ associate Rhona Friedman and Martin Rackstraw, who ‘attends to every detail’.  It acted in a major VAT fraud case, representing John MacFarnon, who eventually pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of fraudulent trading.

Dispute resolution
Defamation and privacy: tier 4 firm; Tamsin Allen is recommended.

Bindmans LLP ‘has played an important role in the recent phone hacking litigation’, led by Tamsin Allen, who is a ‘very good lawyer with an excellent client manner’.

Professional discipline: tier 4 firm; Stephen Grosz and John Halford are recommended.

Bindmans LLP’s team is led by Stephen Grosz QC (Hon), and includes John Halford, who ‘bends over backwards to find time to talk through issues and determine strategies’. The firm regularly acts for the Law Society in regulatory matters involving legal aid solicitors.

Human resources

Employment: employees/unions: second tier firm; Shah Qureshi is recommended.

Shah Qureshi at Bindmans LLP ‘gets things done’ and enjoys a high profile.  The firm acted for dancer Nadine Quashie in her unfair dismissal claim against Stringfellows in the Employment Appeal Tribunal.  It recently established a professionals and executives unit, and achieved a £1.3m settlement on behalf of a senior employee suffering from Asperger syndrome against his former employer, a leading UK law firm.

Immigration (Human rights, appeals and overstay): first tier firm.

Immigration (Business): tier 3 firm.

Immigration combined: Alison Stanley is a leading individual; Liz Barratt, Emma Cohen and Roberta Haslam are recommended.

Alison Stanley’s ‘clever’ team at Bindmans LLP handles private and legal aid work, on behalf of vulnerable individuals, charities and unions, including the NUJ.  Areas of strength include asylum applications and appeals, and domestic violence cases.  Solicitors Emma Cohen and Roberta Haslam advise on the Points Based System.  Liz Barratt is another name to note.


Clinical negligence: claimant: second tier firm; Jon Crocker, Siobhan Kelly and Alla Murphy are recommended.

Bindmans LLP’s ‘small size is its strength, as the department works so well as a team’.  With a team of tenacious practitioners who are not afraid to tackle difficult claims, the firm is often involved in cutting-edge work for vulnerable clients such as prisoners, detainees and the elderly.  Siobhan Kelly attracts widespread praise; Jon Crocker is a ‘standout practitioner’; and associate Alla Murphy is ‘incredibly astute’.

Personal injury: claimant: third tier firm; Jon Crocker, Lynn Knowles and Siobhan Kelly are recommended.

Bindmans LLP has an excellent reputation for quality; the service is ‘personal’, caseloads are kept low, and it is not afraid of taking on challenging cases.  Head of department Jon Crocker has ‘an unerring sense of what will work and what will not’; and the ‘tenacious’ Siobhan Kelly and Lynn Knowles are also recommended.

Private client

Court of Protection: second tier firm; Emma Cohen, Jon Crocker, Liz Barratt, Lynn Knowles and Saimo Chahal are recommended.

Saimo Chahal heads a team at Bindmans LLP which is regularly instructed by the Official Solicitor in reported abduction cases, such as HM and MRM; Hague Convention applicability cases, such as NM; and deprivation of liberty cases, such as HJ.  Other recommended individuals include clinical negligence specialists Lynn Knowles and Jon Crocker; and Emma Cohen and Liz Barratt, who handle work with an immigration angle.

Family: tier 4 firm; Melanie Hay and Janet Broadley are recommended.

In addition to its reputation for private and public children matters, Bindmans LLP has a pedigree in complex financial matters, with Melanie Hay the key contact.  Janet Broadley regularly takes cases to the Court of Appeal; examples include 2011’s Mercredi v Chaffe, a multi-jurisdictional application-for-contact case.

Public sector

Administrative and public law: first tier firm; Stephen Grosz and John Halford are leading individuals; Gwendolen Morgan, Saimo Chahal and Tamsin Allen are recommended.

Leading claimant firm Bindmans LLP is ‘in a class of its own for its size’, and has ‘a very good reputation’.  The team has ‘particular experience of acting in cases with a political dimension, and for NGOs’, and is complemented by the firm’s media and criminal law departments.  Recently it has been instructed on matters such as access to justice and legal aid, privacy, and education.  Stephen Grosz QC (Hon) and Gwendolen Morgan are ‘exceptionally able’, the ‘unbelievably hardworking’ John Halford ‘knows his stuff’, and Tamsin Allen and Saimo Chahal are also recommended.

Civil liberties and human rights: first tier firm; Saimo Chahal, Stephen Grosz and John Halford are leading individuals; Chez Cotton and Paul Ridge are recommended.

Bindmans LLP ‘makes a point of supporting the underdog, and does it wonderfully’.  Its ‘superb’ team is ‘attentive, responsible and approachable’, and recently acted for over 200 occupiers involved in the Occupy London protests.  Team head Stephen Grosz QC (Hon) is ‘an expert in his field’, ‘thorough, and dedicated to helping clients’; his appointment as honorary Queen’s Counsel was for his contribution to human rights and public law. Newly promoted partner Chez Cotton heads the police misconduct team. Saimo Chahal, Paul Ridge and John Halford are also recommended.

Healthcare: first tier firm; Saimo Chahal is a leading individual; Gwendolen Morgan and John Halford are recommended.

Bindmans LLP provides ‘highly competent and professional service’, and has a track record of advising claimants in ‘pioneering claims’. ‘Genuine expert’ Saimo Chahal was involved in Rabone v Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust, which extended the interpretation of Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights; and continues to advise in right-to-die cases.  Chahal and ‘high-quality and thorough practitioner’ John Halford lead the team.  Associate Gwendolen Morgan is ‘emerging as a leading practitioner’.

The Administrative and public law table ranks claimant and commercial firms together.  Bindmans LLP remains a leader on the claimant side.  It has a market-leading human rights and civil liberties practice.

Real estate

Social housing: tenant: first tier firm; Paul Ridge is a leading individual

Bindmans LLP successfully postponed a possession order, citing Articles 10 and 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights, in the Court of Appeal case Nicholas Patrick Smith v UBS.  The firm also successfully acted in Osajie v London Borough of Hackney, a high-value disrepair claim.  The ‘intellectual and practical’ Paul Ridge is ‘lightning quick at dealing with emergencies’.

TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Media and entertainment: tier 5 firm; Tamsin Allen is recommended

Bindmans LLP’s practice head Tamsin Allen co-ordinated the group of claimants bringing legal action against News Group Newspapers for phone hacking, and has successfully represented numerous high-profile claimants.  She is also assisting the Leveson Inquiry.

The rankings are also available to view online. You can view the full results here:

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