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Action Against Public Authorities Solicitors

Duncan Lewis opens new branch for actions against public authorities and inquests in Newcastle (1 February 2023)

Date: 01/02/2023
Duncan Lewis, Action Against Public Authorities Solicitors, Duncan Lewis opens new branch for actions against public authorities and inquests in Newcastle

Award-winning law firm Duncan Lewis Solicitors is excited to announce that it has today (February 1) opened a brand new office in Newcastle specialising in claims against public authorities and inquests.

The modern, fully staffed office will offer specialist legal services for clients seeking assistance with the full range of Actions Against Public Authorities and inquest related matters.

Experienced solicitor Courtney Smith heads up the Newcastle team, which will help people hold public authorities to account when they abuse their powers, fail to observe their professional obligations, or otherwise act unlawfully.

Duncan Lewis is a Times top 200 company which is ranked top tier in the prestigious Legal 500 legal guide. The opening of the new quayside office continues the firm’s ongoing growth strategy, which saw it create a new head office in Fenchurch Street in 2021 when many other firms were deserting the City of London post pandemic.

Courtney Smith says, “I’m very excited about the expansion of the firm and for this new chapter in Newcastle. We are very much looking forward to welcoming new clients and the opportunity to show the north east what Duncan Lewis has to offer.”

Clients can make appointments to attend the new Regus Newcastle office in Rotterdam House, Unit 414a, 116 Quayside, NE1 3DY, via the switchboard or via email from Wednesday, February 1.

The Newcastle team will represent individual claimants in bringing both complaints and civil claims for various types of misconduct, including breaches of the Human Rights Act, misfeasance in public office, negligence, malicious prosecution, false imprisonment, assault and battery, harassment, historical abuse, personal injury and breaches of data protection legislation.

They can act in claims against public bodies, such as police forces, the Home Office, the Ministry of Justice, local authorities and social services, NHS trusts as well as courts and tribunals. They also have expertise in challenging unlawful or irrational decisions of public bodies through judicial review.

Courtney and her team will also offer legal representation to bereaved families in inquests in various settings, including deaths in custody and Article 2 inquests where interested parties include police forces, the Ministry of Justice, NHS Trusts, mental health support services and other public and private bodies.

The office will also be able to tackle Court of Protection cases, with experienced solicitor and Legal 500 recommended lawyer Ben McGuckin based there. He will be available for all matters between public authorities and individuals who lack mental capacity to make important decisions regarding their health, welfare and finances and challenging the deprivation of liberty of individuals in care homes, hospitals or other similar settings.

Duncan Lewis is highly regarded, winning numerous awards including Best Contribution by a Law Firm at the Pro Bono awards 2022 for our civil liberties and human rights work.

Along with winning the Excellence in Legal Services and Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion awards at the Signature awards 2022, the firm has this year been shortlisted for Firm of the Year in both the Modern Law and Lexis Nexis awards 2023.

It is Law Society Lexcel and Investors in People Gold accredited and regularly recognised as an ‘outstanding firm’ for diversity and inclusion, with 14 offices across London and the UK.

Courtney Smith is a solicitor and supervisor in the Actions Against Public Authorities Department, having joined Duncan Lewis in 2015 and specialising in claims against public authorities and inquests. As a member of the Police Action Lawyers’ Group, she aims to hold public authorities to account when they act unlawfully.

She works under departmental director Graeme Rothwell who specialises in civil claims against the state, in particular claims against the police, detaining immigration authorities and prisons. He also represents bereaved families at inquests following deaths of their loved ones in prison, police custody or following their contact with mental health services.

Contact the Newcastle office via email at contact@duncanlewis.com or via the switchboard 0333 772 0409 to make an appointment or for advice on any legal matter.


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