Stewarts is a law firm specialising in high-value complex disputes including personal injury claims. We only act for people who have sustained serious life-changing injury, in particular brain injury and spinal cord injury.
As part of our commitment to those who have suffered a serious injury or illness we provide extensive pro bono (free of charge) support through The Legal Service. We developed The Legal Service to support patients and their families at a time when independent legal support is most needed but often hard to find. The Legal Service was established in 2004 and now operates in 10 NHS Trusts in England, including major trauma and rehabilitation hospitals. Some our busiest Legal Services operate on Neuro Intensive Care Units.
Patients and their families often experience legal and practical difficulties following acute hospitalisation. Early identification and management of these issues helps to relieve their anxieties. Many patients are admitted unexpectedly and have made little, if any, arrangements regarding their ongoing day-to-day commitments. We assist patients and their families with a range of legal issues which arise including (but not limited to) issues relating to finances, employment, welfare benefits, housing, care, powers of attorney and deputyship. The advice is free of charge and provided regardless of whether the patient has a personal injury claim and regardless of whether we are instructed in relation to a claim. In the event that the patient has a potential claim for compensation, we provide that patient/family with a list of law firms and explain that they should thoroughly research firms before choosing their solicitor.
In 2018, the Legal Service was reviewed by NHS England when they were considering amendments to their Standard Contract and consequently, NHS England made the following endorsement:
“We were particularly anxious to ensure that the Contract requirements did not adversely affect the valuable legal services provided to patients and their families in major trauma centres.” (NHS Standard Contract 2017/2018 – 2018/2019 (Updated January 2018) Technical Guidance).
You can read more about The Legal Service in the medical journals and Poster mentioned below. You can also read some case studies regarding our pro bono work and personal injury cases by clicking on the relevant links below.
The Legal Service is available to patients and their families from hospitals not covered by our existing legal service contracts and to clinicians treating and supporting patients following serious injury.
Please feel free to discuss our Legal Service with your patients and to access advice from The Legal Service please contact Kara Smith on 020 7822 8049 or by email: [email protected].
For more information about Stewarts visit the Stewarts website here: https://www.stewartslaw.com/expertise/personal-injury/
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THE LEGAL SERVICE
Medical Journals and posters:
- Medical-legal partnerships: 11 years’ experience of providing acute legal advice for critically ill patients and their families – Journal of the Intensive Care Society, 2019 https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/1751143719833632
- Establishing a legal service for major trauma patients at a major trauma centre in the UK – Emergency Medical Journal, 2017 https://emj.bmj.com/content/34/9/606.full
- Lawyers in intensive care: introducing an acute legal service for patients with critical illness – Journal of the Intensive Care Society, 2010 https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/175114371001100207
- Establishing a legal service for major trauma patients in two major trauma centres – Poster prepared for the London Trauma Conference, 2015 http://naccs.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/PDF-1-Poster-for-LTC.pdf
- Life beyond injury: We have teamed up with a number of our clients who have suffered catastrophic injuries to tell their stories of Life Beyond Injury. https://www.stewartslaw.com/life-beyond-injury/
- Compensation case studies: http://naccs.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/PDF-2-compensation-case-studies.pdf
- Non-compensation case studies: http://naccs.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/PDF-3-non-compensation-case-studies.pdf
- Patient testimonials http://naccs.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/PDF-4-Patient-Testimonials_compressed.pdf
- Clinician testimonials http://naccs.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/PDF-5-Clinician-Testimonials_compressed.pdf
- ‘Advance decisions can help you take control of your future healthcare if you lose mental capacity.’ April 2021 https://www.stewartslaw.com/news/making-advanced-healthcare-decisions-if-you-lose-your-mental-capacity/
- ‘Disability initiatives: what support is out there?’ December 2020 https://www.stewartslaw.com/news/disability-initiatives-what-support-is-out-there/
- ‘The search continues – the difficulties of securing suitable housing following serious injury or illness’ August 2020 https://www.stewartslaw.com/news/securing-suitable-housing-following-serious-injury-or-illness/
- ‘Making a Lasting Power of Attorney during Covid-19’ May 2020 https://www.stewartslaw.com/news/making-a-lasting-power-of-attorney-during-covid-19/
- ‘The impact of the Coronavirus Act 2020 on healthcare providers and patients’ April 2020 https://www.stewartslaw.com/news/government-coronavirus-measures-what-do-they-mean-for-individuals/
- Why making a claim for Total Permanent Disablement under critical illness insurance policies can be so difficult.’ February 2020 https://www.stewartslaw.com/news/making-a-claim-for-total-permanent-disablement/
- The Legal Service newsletters: https://www.stewartslaw.com/stewarts-newsletters/legal-service-newsletters/
- Medical Witness newsletters: https://www.stewartslaw.com/stewarts-newsletters/medical-witness-newsletters/
- Stewarts Soundbites: a series of bitesize sessions from Stewarts specialists lawyers designed to deliver concise and interesting updates, conversations and presentations on a range of topics. https://www.stewartslaw.com/soundbites/
- Case Managers’ and rehab professionals’ training webinar https://www.stewartslaw.com/news/case-managers-and-rehab-professionals-training-webinar/
- Stewarts Expert Witness Training Webinar – 12pm Monday 28 June 2021 (leaflet here)