Solicitor, Clinical Negligence
ExpertiseSarah is a specialist medical negligence solicitor who joined Hudgell Solicitors in 2014, representing clients in cases including delayed and misdiagnosis, maternal birth injury claims, ophthalmic issues, dental negligence and claims relating to neglectful care of the elderly. Sarah has previous legal experience with two other law firms, predominantly in Clinical Negligence, having studied a four-year law degree and legal practice course at Northumbria University. She became fully qualified as a solicitor having completed a training contract at Hudgell Solicitors. Sarah’s clients regularly reflect upon how she goes ‘above and beyond’ in her work for them.
Having worked in this area of law pretty much for my entire career, and having acted for so many different people from all walks of life, I still find myself really passionate about getting a good result for my clients. Hearing their stories and how one, sometimes small mistake or single decision, can have such a profound effect on their lives still makes me fired up to do the best I can for whomever I am representing. When asked why I chose my career path I always answer that ‘I like helping people’ and I genuinely I feel my job is utilising the skills I have acquired over the years, and my legal expertise, to help families or individuals make things right when things go wrong for them.
My clients say that I provide no nonsense legal advice and a medical jargon free approach to their cases which I feel is really important as in my view they have to be involved and understand the claim at all stages. I understand that it can be very daunting dealing with a claim or even a solicitor and I want my clients to feel totally at ease when dealing with me.
In February 2019 I secured a £375,000 settlement for a 69-year-old woman who sadly lost 80% of her vision in one eye as she was not referred to hospital quickly enough by her optician, and then was wrongly diagnosed and given inappropriate treatment by the hospital. This loss of vision had a big impact on the lady’s earning capacity and daily life so it was a very important settlement, and one which helped my client and her family make a new start.
I have represented many families who have seen elderly loved ones badly let down by neglectful treatment in care homes, and therefore I was proud to be part of Hudgell Solicitors’ ‘Give Me Dignity’ campaign in 2018, in which we highlighted and exposed neglectful care at homes across England. It had a big media impact and hopefully helped raise awareness amongst families of the signs they need to be aware of when choosing a home, whilst also helping to drive up standards.
Sometimes, what appears a small injury can result in long-term suffering if the right medical treatment is not provided, and that was the case when I represented a lady who was left largely unable to use her left hand after breaking two fingers in a game of netball. This was because there was a failure to diagnose and treat the fractures soon enough, resulting in several further operations. A five-figure damages settlement was secured in that case. Our work sadly often sees us representing people who have lost loved ones as a result of neglectful medical care or treatment, as happened when I represented the widow of a man who died when hospital staff failed to recognise he had a bleed following surgery – even though it was a well-known complication. His death was found to have been avoidable by the coroner and although compensation can never bring a loved one back, a successful case was very important to his widow, ensuring people were held responsible and that lessons were learned.
Career, qualifications and professional memberships
- Qualifications and professional memberships
- LLB (Hons) Solicitors Exempting Degree
- Member of the Leeds Medical Legal Society