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What are civil liberties?

A Civil Liberties case is typically centred around bringing a civil action against the police for using unfair or illegal treatment. This will likely involve a breaching of your rights where unlawful actions or an abuse of power that affects your freedom and liberty is used. Whether your allegation against the police is because you have been wrongfully arrested and detained or you have been a victim of battery and assault, we will challenge those responsible and seek to obtain a favourable settlement for the physical injuries and psychological trauma you’ve suffered. If you have been a victim of any form of police misconduct that has resulted in your civil liberties or human rights being infringed, then our lawyers can help you get the compensation you deserve.

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Making a Civil Liberties Claim with Hudgells

If your rights have been breached by the police or the state, Hudgell Solicitors can help you get justice. Our civil liberties solicitors specialise in actions against the police, holding authorities to account for infringing on your rights and stepping over the line through unlawful treatment.

We understand that challenging the police and the state can be difficult. Hudgells has a number of experienced lawyers specialising in actions against the police who will assess your case and develop a strategy to put right the state’s failings, offering support and guidance at every stage of the process.

With a high success rate in securing justice for those affected by misconduct and abuse, we empower people to sue the police and challenge authorities whose actions have impacted their civil liberties and human rights. No matter what injustice you’ve suffered at the hands of the state, our lawyers will do all they can to ensure the right party is held accountable.

Whilst we wouldn’t typically initiate a claim while criminal proceedings are ongoing, we are happy to offer a free no-obligation consultation to discuss your options. However, it is important to be aware that criminal proceedings take precedence over civil action so where a conviction is attained, it can be difficult to then succeed with a claim.

Client Story

Greater Manchester Police agree on settlement for a woman who was mocked in e-mails between officers after she alleged she was raped. The unprofessional conduct, and errors made by officers, were only discovered four years later when the same man she alleged had attacked her was again arrested relating to another sexual assault.

Read more

No Win, No Fee Civil Liberties Claims

If you or a member of your family has come to harm as a result of a civil liberties breach which was no fault of your own, you may have the right to seek compensation. We put your interests first, ensuring the most appropriate and effective legal specialists are handling your no win, no fee claim.

Contact a member of our specialist team if you have suffered from or need support in any of the following:

Solicitors specialising in actions against the police

Our lawyers will make challenging the state feel less daunting, helping you to bring action against the government and public bodies when they have acted unlawfully. We seek to secure compensation and justice for human rights and other breaches which have had a detrimental impact on you and your family. With an expert legal team experienced in holding public authorities to account, we will be a strong and reliable partner in your challenge against the state.

  • We are an award-winning team who have been nationally recognised and widely accredited for delivering civil liberties legal services to our clients
  • We offer competitive private funding rates and routinely act for clients who pay privately. We are proud of the service we offer to our clients.
  • We can offer legal aid contracts or “no win no fee” agreements to financially vulnerable clients to ensure justice is served no matter your situation




Funding a Civil Liberties Claim

For some of our civil liberties cases, we might offer a “no win, no fee” agreement if we feel your situation suits being supported by this arrangement.

If agreed upon, then you will only be expected to provide a portion of your compensation to pay for legal services. However, if your case is not successful, then you won’t need to pay anything.

In some situations, you may also be eligible for legal aid cover which can be discussed with our civil liberties team directly.

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Covid-19 Public Inquiry

Covid-19 Public Inquiry

An independent public inquiry into the Government’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic will begin in the spring of 2022. We have set up a dedicated team of lawyers to handle all enquiries relating to Covid-19 and the public inquiry and we would like to hear from front-line workers who contracted Covid-19.

Find out more here

Our Civil Liberties Experts

Dr Neil Hudgell Executive Chairman Read more
Vicky Richardson Head of Civil Liberties Read more
Terry Wilcox Associate, Civil Liberties Read more
Leanne Stephenson Associate, Civil Liberties Read more
Adam Biglin Solicitor, Civil Liberties Read more
Dan Macmillan Solicitor, Civil Liberties Read more
James Camidge Trainee Solicitor Read more
Alexandra Eldon Trainee Solicitor, Civil Liberties Read more
Eliza Hudgell Trainee Solicitor, Civil Liberties Read more


Do I qualify for a civil liberties claim?

If you believe that your rights have been infringed upon due to actions from the police through no fault of your own, then you could fit the criteria for a civil liberties claim.

This comes down to whether the actions of the police were unlawful or crossed the line over into an abuse of power when dealing with you. We can advise you as to whether this is the case or not, and if so what legal action could be taken.

You will need to report a police officer and make a formal police complaint relevant to your claim to bring attention to your potential case. We also cannot represent anyone who currently has a criminal case brought against them and is seeking to complain against police investigation about them.

How do I make a civil liberties claim?

If you believe that you or a member of your family has been harmed as a result of a civil liberties breach through no fault of their own, then there could be compensation owed. You can organise a free, no-obligation legal consultation with one of our team to discuss whether or not you have a case, or fill out an online claim form.

Usually, you will need to file a complaint against the police force responsible before we consider accepting instructions, as it will also need to be reviewed by the police’s internal professional standards department.

Once we’ve discussed your case and a complaint has been filed, one of our civil liberties lawyers will review whether any legal action against the police can be taken and whether you have a valid case. If things proceed, then evidence will need to be gathered to support your civil liberties claim against the police. This can include witnesses, written records of the event, photographs, video recordings or medical examinations which took place.

Is making a complaint against the police important before seeking legal advice?

Not necessarily, although we will generally advise people to make a complaint to the police force or IOPC before we consider accepting instructions.

Some complaints will be handled by the force’s own internal professional standards department, but others may be so serious in terms of the allegations made that they have to be passed to the IOPC.

Am I eligible for legal aid?

We assess eligibility based on a personal basis so we can determine what arrangement works best for your circumstances.

We’d encourage anyone considering a claim to get in touch with our civil liberties team to discuss legal aid eligibility if this is a potential obstacle for you bringing a case forward. Our free, no-obligation consultation can help reassure you as to what the best course of action may be.

How much police compensation is expected for an unlawful arrest claim?

The amount of civil liberties compensation you could be owed depends on many factors and will vary largely from case to case. How much compensation a civil liberties claim is worth is usually negotiated between your solicitor and the responsible party, so these negotiations can affect how the situation develops.

The matters that will be considered in unlawful arrest cases are:

  • the nature of any wrongful arrest made;
  • how long you were unlawfully detained as a result and the impact it’s had on your life; and
  • whether you have any injuries suffered as a result of excessive force, battery, or assault committed by the police.
  • Any further aggravating factors will also be taken into consideration, such as being unlawfully arrested in front of your family, friends, or colleagues, or if an unlawful act does harm to your standing in the community or workplace.

    Do Hudgells accept instructions in criminal cases?

    No, we do not represent people facing legal prosecutions themselves. Neither can we represent people who wish to make complaints about the standard of police investigations into crimes committed against them.

    We solely focus on representing people in civil claims against the police for misconduct.

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