In September 1997, when I first set up Neil Hudgell Solicitors, Princess Diana had just died, the people of Scotland and Wales voted to set up their own parliaments and Athens was picked as the host city for the 2004 Olympics. In 2012 Diana’s eldest son has married, Scotland is now debating independence and London will host the summer Olympics. Much has changed, including my hairline sadly, but one thing has remained constant…my enjoyment of practicing law and serving the people of Yorkshire and beyond to ensure everyone has access to free legal advice.
I set up on my own after working in a general practice for 4 years before then. It was a great experience dealing in many areas of law, working from offices located on two housing estates in Hull. I knew then that I was ready to lead my own practice, and although it was quite scary at the time, I haven’t looked back or regretted it once since the day we opened for business.
The company has grown, the industry is being deregulated and law firms have come and gone over the last 15 years, but here at Neil Hudgell Solicitors we still strive to offer our clients the best in legal advice, whatever the current climate.
There are many threats to the ‘no win no fee’ system but I believe it offers the ordinary man or woman in the street the opportunity to fight for their rights against big insurers who hold all the power.
Proposed changes in the industry will lead to people being less able to fight for their legitimate rights by the removal of legal aid in many cases, and because of the squeeze on legal fees, be unable to find the best advocates to represent their interests. Through our improved use of technology and continuous development of working practices we think we are best placed to absorb those changes but at the same time continue to provide a top quality service for all our clients.
No doubt the next 1, 5 and..15 years will bring big changes, both socially, economically and to the legal industry, but I am determined that whatever comes, we will be here to serve the needs of our clients for free, fair and honest legal advice.
We are the oldest exclusive personal injury and medical negligence practice in Hull and East Yorkshire, and we have done that through continued excellence in client care. Our biggest source of business has consistently been recommendation, something I am extremely proud to say. I hope and expect that to continue for the next 15 years and beyond.