Areas of specialism
I am a specialist in tackling complex claimant cases, in particular cerebral palsy cases, claims involving children, failures in care of the elderly and spinal injury cases. I also take a particular interest in representing families at inquests and was appointed as Assistant Coroner in Oxford in 2015.
Expertise and key strengths
I am known for my caring approach and my determination to succeed on even the most difficult of cases. I have extensive experience in leading legal teams, implementing change and restructuring departments to introduce improved ways of working. I am an effective motivator and am dedicated to providing the very best client service, with sympathy and understanding at the heart of my work. I have acted not only for private clients, but also for Trade Union Membership Organisations.
I have been a partner of three firms of solicitors, heading up medical law, clinical negligence and healthcare departments. I am a former state registered nurse, a role in which I spent six years before entering the legal sector in 1990. I worked in advising NHS Trusts on medico-legal issues, legal claims and risk assessments before specialising in claimant clinical negligence work. I have experience in leading legal teams in offices across the UK. I have a Bachelor of Law degree with Honours, and a Masters degree in Medical Law and Ethics from King’s College, London. Due to my experience, I am frequently asked to comment on medico-legal issues by the media.
Proudest professional achievement
My proudest achievement is difficult as there have been many memorable victories for seriously injured clients, but one is taking over a dental negligence case involving a 9-year-old boy who was brain damaged during a dental procedure for which he had a general anaesthetic. He got into difficulties and the dentist was unable to bring him round before he suffered a lack of oxygen to his brain. In addition to obtaining sufficient compensation to enable him to be cared for in the event of his mother predeceasing him, which was highly likely, as a direct result of campaigning on this case the law was changed and dentists are no longer able to administer general anaesthetics to children in the surgery. The child has to be admitted to hospital where paediatric anaesthetists and recovery teams are on hand, thus preventing such a catastrophic event ever occurring again.
Qualifications and Professional Memberships
Society of Clinical Negligence Lawyers (SCIL) – Vice-chair of the Executive Committee and Founding Member. SCIL is regarded as one of the foremost groups representing the views and interests of Claimant Lawyers in England.
Law Society Civil Litigation Committee – Member of Specialist Clinical Negligence Lawyer Group.
Legal Services Commission Area Appeals Committee – Member of tribunal to decide appeals against discharge of Certificates of Public Funding – all areas including employment and immigration.
Law Society Clinical Negligence Panel Member.
Association of Victims of Medical Accidents (AVMA) – Clinical Negligence Panel Member and Working Party Member.
Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) – Clinical Negligence special interest group – Chair of Legal Services Commission Working Party.
Assistant Coroner for Oxford – Appointed 2015 (A part-time role supporting the Chief Coroner).
I have written several practical guidance articles and books for lawyers and others working in this complex area of the law. Examples are:
2014 and 2008 Association of Personal Injury Practitioners (Joint Author) Guide to Clinical Negligence (Second and First Editions). Jordans, London.
2010 New Law Journal – Managing Children’s Claims Better
2002/4 Various articles on Reform of the Coronial System in England.
2002 R. Rhodes-Kemp (Lead Author) – Guide for Carers of Children with Cerebral Palsy.
1999 R. Rhodes-Kemp – A Remedy for Medical Complaints – Sweet & Maxwell, London. (A guide to alternatives to litigation where a patient or other party wishes to make a complaint about medical treatment by practitioners in all areas).
1996 BMA and Patients’ Association – Patients’ Guide to Advance Directives – BMA and Patients’ Association, London. (An advisory booklet setting out the basics of “Living Wills”) (Lead Author).