Surrogacy + parental responsibility – the law
In the UK, if a couple want to start a family using a surrogate, they should be aware of the different legal ways to become parents. Their route to legal parenthood will be affected by their relationship status, among other factors. In 2008, the law... [read more...
Getting your money back from a builder
Disputes over building work and home repairs are unfortunately all too common. Whether it’s wiring, plumbing, roofing or construction, unfinished or poor quality work can result in extra hassle and cost for you to put it right. So how can you claim money... [read more...
We raised £6,000 for dementia in 2017
We’d like to say a big well done to all our staff on their amazing fundraising efforts over the past year. Thanks to their hard work, we’ve been able to raise £6,061.54 for local dementia charities BRACE Alzheimer’s Research and Bristol Dementia Action... [read more...
Alex Castiglione appointed Partner
We're delighted to announce the appointment of Alex Castiglione, our current Head of Commercial Property, as Partner. Alex joined Barcan+Kirby in 2002 as a temporary receptionist, and took the opportunity to obtain her Chartered Legal Executive... [read more...
Making your Wills together
Need to know the differences between Joint Wills, Mutual Wills and Mirror Wills? In this article our Wills, Trusts + Probate team explain the different effects of each testamentary document. There are three different types of wills that two or more people... [read more...
Unmarried couples’ rights – a myth?
A survey undertaken by family law organisation, Resolution, has found that millions of cohabiting couples wrongly believe that they’re entitled to legal protection when they split up, as they’re under ‘common law marriage’. Common law marriage,... [read more...
Speed down for Road Safety Week
Once again, we’re delighted to be supporting Road Safety Week organised by Brake, the road safety charity, and working with the Brain Injury Group. This year, the campaign is running from 20th to 26th November and the theme is ‘Speed Down Save... [read more...
The dangers of dooring
‘Dooring’ is an accident which occurs when a passenger or driver of a car opens their door without looking properly and causes a cyclist to swerve or crash as a result. With growing numbers of cyclists and growing levels of congestion in busy city... [read more...
Harassment at work – what are your options?
Recent events in Westminster and Hollywood have shown that, unfortunately, sexual harassment is still alive and kicking in the workplace. Affecting both women and men, the fact that this deplorable behaviour goes on may be news, but it won’t come as a... [read more...
Firm ranked by Chambers Guide in three areas of law
The latest edition of the Chambers Guide to the Legal Profession has just been published – and there is plenty in it for our solicitors to be happy about! Our medical negligence team have once again come out top in Bristol for their specialism – they... [read more...
Getting divorced in the UK if you live abroad
With much uncertainty still surrounding Britain's departure from the EU, many people are wondering how divorce will work across international borders. Chris Miller, family law and divorce solicitor, discusses the process of applying for a divorce in the UK if... [read more...
Tom Sharkey joins Law Society mental capacity panel
Tom Sharkey, Partner and head of our Court of Protection team, has been named among the first 30 lawyers appointed to the Law Society’s Mental Capacity panel of experts. As an accredited mental capacity legal expert, Tom is recognised by the Law Society... [read more...
Historic success at the Bristol Law Society awards
Barcan+Kirby are celebrating a historic night of success at the Bristol Law Society awards where we scooped no fewer than three awards – a record for the firm.... [read more...
Five questions adoption lawyers get asked
National Adoption Week runs from 15th to 21st October this year, with the aim of spreading awareness of adoption and encourage potential adopters to think seriously about the idea. As part of this, we asked adoption and family law solicitor Clare Cox to... [read more...
Missed Breast Cancer Diagnosis
With one in eight women in the UK likely to develop breast cancer within their lifetime, recognising the signs and symptoms is crucial in accessing treatment quickly. As the most common type of cancer, one person will be diagnosed every 10 minutes. We’re... [read more...
Firm receives top ranking in Legal 500
We’re delighted to announce that we’ve once again been recognised by independent legal research guide The Legal 500 for our medical negligence, personal injury and family law expertise. We have again been awarded a tier 1 ranking for our medical... [read more...
New debt recovery rules: What you need to know
This week, the new pre-action protocol for debt claims came into force – and it’s likely to leave some business owners and managers scratching their heads. We asked Senior Associate Solicitor Samantha Castle, to decode these new debt recovery rules for us... [read more...
Firm donates another £2,000 to local dementia charities
We’re pleased to report on World Alzheimer’s Day that, thanks to the fantastic fundraising efforts of our staff, we’ve been able to donate £2,000 this month to local charities Bristol Dementia Action Alliance and BRACE Alzheimer’s Research.... [read more...
Meningitis caused by medical negligence – case study
A recently released report by the Confederation of Meningitis Organisations shows that around half a million children under five die of meningitis worldwide every year. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has put meningitis high on the global agenda and is... [read more...
Latest trainee solicitor appointments announced
Barcan+Kirby are delighted to confirm the appointment of two new trainee solicitors from within our ranks, following an open recruitment process that drew in scores of applications.... [read more...
FIVE nominations for Bristol Law Society Awards
We’re delighted to announce that we’ve received no fewer than five nominations for the Bristol Law Society Awards this year!... [read more...
Delayed sepsis diagnosis – a case study
In our work as medical negligence solicitors, we’ve seen how delays in treating sepsis can have devastating consequences for patients and their families. A quarter of NHS trusts don’t give antibiotics to patients with sepsis within 60 minutes of... [read more...
Women in Law Shortlisted for Business Award
The shortlist for the Business Leader Awards has been released and we’re delighted to see that we’ve once again made the final cut in the Marketing Campaign of the Year category. For the second year in a row, Barcan+Kirby is up for this prestigious... [read more...
New ‘Growing Together’ community campaign launches
We’re pleased and excited to announce the launch of a new local communities-based sponsorship programme, which will fund a number of growing-related projects around Bristol and South Gloucestershire.... [read more...
On your bike Giles! Land’s End to Bristol for the Grand Appeal
Consultant solicitor Giles Woodward is once again donning his cycling jersey to raise money for the Grand Appeal – this time by riding from Land’s End to Bristol in four days! Giles will be cycling 260 miles through the Cornish, Devon and Somerset... [read more...
Power of Attorney or Deputyship – which is better?
Powers of Attorney have hit the news today after a retired Court of Protection judge said he would never make one.... [read more...
Leading judge slams mental health provision for teenagers
A top family law judge has described the ‘disgraceful and utterly shaming lack of proper provision in this country’ for teenagers with mental health needs.... [read more...
How to recover a business debt
If you’re a business or sole trader, customers who don’t pay what they owe can have a significant impact on your finances. Of course, it isn’t always just customers who might owe you money. You might need to recover a debt from your own suppliers, if... [read more...
Fixed legal costs – a danger to patient safety + justice
A leading patient safety charity has warned the government against capping legal costs for medical negligence claims.... [read more...
Supreme Court rules employment tribunal fees to be unlawful
The Supreme Court has unanimously ruled that employment tribunal fees are unlawful.... [read more...
Using trusts to plan your legacy
Do I need a trust? It’s a question many people ask when they come to write their Will and plan their estate.... [read more...
Equal pension rights for same-sex couples
Same-sex marriage has been legal in Britain since 2014, but inequality in marriage still hasn’t been completely eliminated. However, there was a big step forward on this front today as the Supreme Court ruled in favour of John Walker, a retired gay man... [read more...
Employment tribunals – will Matthew Taylor’s review help?
Employment and the world of work is a hot topic for public debate at the moment – and today, the talk is all focused on Matthew Taylor’s report into improving working practices, fittingly titled ‘Good Work’. So should we be saying ‘good work’... [read more...
Nowhere to turn – only a quarter of women seeking refuge find it
A new report published this week by Women’s Aid reveals that only a quarter of women supported by their caseworkers last year were able to find space in a domestic violence refuge. This follows last year’s news that as many as two thirds of all refuges... [read more...
Making strides in the fight against dementia – 20km walk for BRACE
Staff from our North Street office were put through their paces this weekend when they took part in a 20 kilometre sponsored walk to raise money for BRACE Alzheimer’s Research. The team, made up of ten employees plus one retired partner, trekked... [read more...
Five mediation misconceptions
Despite family mediation being a viable option for resolving a range of family issues, confusion still exists about how the process works and what can be achieved from it. After all, if mediation offers so many benefits to separating couples, why doesn’t... [read more...
Does dementia stop you signing a Will?
“Does dementia stop me from making a Will?” It’s a question we often get asked, along with dozens of similar queries on behalf of parents, grandparents and other relatives. Estate disputes specialist and solicitor Mark Scanlon explains the steps... [read more...
How can I prevent my child being abducted?
The prospect of the other parent taking your child abroad, without your consent, is a frightening one. But with a rise in international relationships comes an increase in international separations, with some parents in bitter conflict about how and where... [read more...
Same sex marriage v civil partnerships – what’s the difference?
In 2004, Parliament passed the Civil Partnership Act which allowed couples of the same sex to enter into civil partnerships. This entitled same sex couples to the same property rights, social security and pension benefits of those who are legally... [read more...
Elderly parents + care: how to have that difficult conversation
Contrary to popular belief, difficult conversations aren’t restricted to our teenage years. Adulthood brings its fair share of uncomfortable topics – not least those related to our ageing parents and their finances and plans for later life care. If... [read more...
Lasting Powers of Attorney aren’t just for the elderly
Whilst we all recognise the importance of writing our Will, fewer of us will be considering a Lasting Power of Attorney, or an LPA. This enables you to appoint someone to act on your behalf if you're physically or mentally incapable of making your own... [read more...
Firm links up with Bristol Energy to fight dementia
Hot on the heels of our Dementia Awareness Week donation scheme, we’re excited to announce our affiliate deal with Bristol Energy, which allows our staff to fundraise for BRACE when they switch energy suppliers. For every employee who switches their gas... [read more...
We’re supporting Dementia Awareness Week
At Barcan+Kirby, we’re proud to announce our support for Dementia Awareness Week, running May 15th to 21st, 2017. Dementia Awareness Week aims to unite people across the UK to take action against dementia – whether by fundraising, organising an event... [read more...
Inheritance Tax on gifts – what are the rules?
New research suggests that tax breaks on gifts between family members could encourage more parents and grandparents to pass on a ‘living inheritance’ to the younger generation, giving them a boost as they try to climb the property ladder. As it stands,... [read more...
Aspiring solicitor? Tips for success in your trainee interview
You’ve been invited to interview for a training contract – congratulations! After years of study, securing a training contract is one of the trickiest hurdles you’ll face in your journey to become a fully fledged solicitor. It’s important that you get... [read more...
I’m separated – can I take my child on holiday?
For most parents, taking their child on holiday doesn’t present a problem. But for separated parents, the issue of international travel can be difficult to navigate – especially if there are underlying concerns about abduction. So if you’re... [read more...
Firm announces internal promotions
We’re delighted to announce a number of internal promotions, including the appointment of Senior Associate Claire Hurrell to Partner, as the firm continues to go from strength to strength. Claire, a member of our medical negligence team, joined us in... [read more...
Make a Will Fortnight
We’re delighted to announce that Barcan+Kirby has raised over £2,000 for St Peter’s Hospice, as part of their Make a Will Fortnight last October.... [read more...
Where next for Bristol’s gig economy?
The government’s U-turn today on national insurance rises announced last week will no doubt go down well with the business community. Much has been made of the impact on self-employed workers and their families, particularly around London. But while... [read more...
A probate tax is coming – here’s what you need to know
The big tax news in the Budget on Wednesday was the national insurance rise for self-employed workers. While this continues to cause a storm in the headlines, another change which was confirmed by the Government this week has all but slipped by – changes to... [read more...
Celebrating our women in law for International Women’s Day
Today is International Women’s Day – so we’re taking the opportunity to celebrate the contribution and achievements of our female staff. We strive to ensure our firm is a welcoming environment and make sure we nurture and reward all talent,... [read more...
Estate claim successful in the High Court
We recently acted in a contentious probate case, representing a widow and her child who were contesting the terms of a disputed Will. Last week, our clients were awarded nearly £100,000 plus costs in court, effectively the value of the entire... [read more...
Should heterosexual couples be able to form civil partnerships?
The Court of Appeal ruled this week that the government’s stance on civil partnerships could continue, even though it might breach heterosexual couples’ human rights. Rebecca Steinfeld and Charles Keidan launched an appeal after the High Court decided... [read more...
Four ideas that could change the face of divorce law
The modern family unit is changing – and the law is struggling to keep up. One area where this has become increasingly apparent is divorce law, most of which was written not in the previous decade, but in the previous century. Of course, there are good... [read more...
Alex Castiglione appointed Head of Commercial Property
Barcan+Kirby are delighted to announce the promotion of Alex Castiglione to Senior Associate and Head of Commercial Property.... [read more...
Case study: how we helped two landlords recover their properties
It’s not uncommon for a landlord to want to take back possession of a property which they’re renting out.... [read more...
Using mediation to resolve grandparent visitation rights
When parents break-up, one unfortunate consequence of their separation is that grandparents can find themselves excluded from their grandchildren’s lives.... [read more...
How to get the best out of family mediation
You've decided to use family mediation to resolve your relationship dispute, but how do you get the best out of the process? We’ve provided some useful pointers you might want to consider to ensure that you benefit fully from family mediation.... [read more...
Employment law for employers: what’s changing in 2017?
With employment law legislation changing with such regularity, it can be difficult for business owners to keep up-to-date with the latest developments. Let’s be honest, keeping on top of what is new in employment law can be a challenge. But with a number... [read more...
Barcan+Kirby announces new supported charities
We’re delighted to announce that this year we’ve jointly selected BRACE, the dementia charity, and Bristol Dementia Action Alliance (BDAA) as our 2017 charities of the year. BRACE is an independent charity dedicated to raising funds that support... [read more...
2016 – How did we do?
As the new year gets underway, we’ve been reviewing our client feedback to see how we did in 2016. We’re pleased to say that even though last year we reported that 96% of our clients were happy with the service they received, this year we’ve gone one... [read more...
Firm raises £7,781 for Macmillan
For the past year we’ve been raising money for Macmillan Cancer Support, and now that 2016 is over we’re delighted to announce our fundraising total is £7,781! As well as the usual coffee mornings (with monthly supplies of home-baked cake),... [read more...
Iain Robinson joins commercial property team
We're pleased to announced that we have expanded our commercial team, with the appointment of Commercial Property lawyer, Iain Robinson. Iain joins the firm from Humphreys & Co and has seven years' experience in commercial property, specialising in... [read more...
Families feel ‘shut out’ of patient death investigations
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has released a report on how community and mental health NHS trusts investigate patient deaths. It highlights that a key complaint from relatives and carers of deceased patients that they feel shut out from the... [read more...
We’re supporting Cots for Tots’ Christmas appeal
We’re delighted to announce that we’re supporting the Cots for Tots’ 2016 Christmas Stocking appeal. Cots for Tots is a Bristol-based charity that is committed to supporting the families of sick and premature babies in Bristol’s special care baby... [read more...
New driver safety guide released following Bedminster baby death
The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has this week launched a new an online guide which demonstrates how to check vehicle trailers are safely secured. The move has been prompted by a campaign organised by Donna and Scott Hussey, whose son Freddie... [read more...
Government launches whiplash consultation
Last week government ministers signaled their intent to drastically overhaul access to justice for personal injury claims with a new Ministry of Justice consultation on the personal injury claims system. The consultation report proposes radical reforms to... [read more...
Make a pledge to Brake for Road Safety Week
We’re proud to once again support Road Safety Week, organised by Brake, the road safety charity. This event runs between 21 and 27 November, bringing together schools and communities to highlight the importance of safe driving. Barcan+Kirby is... [read more...
Leading the way on becoming ‘dementia friendly’
Staff at Barcan+Kirby have given their support to an Alzheimer's Society initiative to create 'dementia friendly' communities by attending a dementia information session. Over 100 of our staff have committed to becoming a 'Dementia Friend', meaning that... [read more...
Firm ranked top in Bristol for medical negligence
Barcan+Kirby’s medical negligence solicitors have once again been named as the dominant force in their field. The latest set of rankings from Chambers’ Guide to the Legal Profession were released on Wednesday and Barcan+Kirby were once again the only... [read more...
£1,000 for local dementia charity
A local dementia awareness charity has been given a boost, thanks to a £1,000 donation from Barcan+Kirby. Bristol Dementia Action Alliance (BDAA) is a community-based project that is funded entirely by volunteers. We’re working in partnership with BDAA... [read more...
New childbirth injury scheme announced
The health secretary has announced plans for a new scheme to allow parents of children injured during birth to access financial support more easily. The Rapid Resolution and Redress scheme, currently out for consultation, would be a voluntary route for... [read more...
Claire Hurrell named Lawyer of the Year
Barcan+Kirby are delighted to announce that Claire Hurrell has been awarded the prestigious Lawyer of the Year accolade by Bristol Law Society. Claire, a senior associate solicitor in the firm’s top-ranked medical negligence team, won the award for her... [read more...
Families avoiding ‘difficult conversations’ about old age care
Our latest research reveals that many of us are burying our heads in the sand when it comes to the realities of our later life care, or the care of those close to us. As part of our research we surveyed those with elderly relatives and grown-up children... [read more...
What kind of family lawyer do you need?
If you need legal representation because you’re going through family difficulties, such as future child arrangements or separating finances, it can be difficult to know what your first steps should be. Depending on your situation you might need to instruct... [read more...
Firm shortlisted for four regional law awards
We’re delighted to announce that Barcan+Kirby has been shortlisted for four awards in the forthcoming Bristol Law Society annual awards.... [read more...
Firm receives top tier Legal 500 ranking
We’re delighted to announce that our medical negligence, personal injury and family law teams have been recognised by Legal 500, an independent guide to the UK’s legal services providers. Described as “one of the best in the South West”, our... [read more...
Future retirees – beware the ‘middle class care gap’
An ageing population inevitably means that more and more of us will need care in our later years. But our Citizen 2025 research suggests that those aged 55+ - the so-called baby boomer generation - aren’t doing enough now to ensure that they can provide... [read more...
Firm shortlisted for regional marketing award
Barcan+Kirby’s Citizen 2025 campaign has been shortlisted as one of three finalists in the ‘marketing campaign of the year’ category of the Business Leader Awards 2016. This award is open to organisations of all shapes and sizes across Bristol and... [read more...
Five ways motorists can reduce cycling collisions
As personal injury solicitors who act for claimants in cycle injury claims, we’ve seen our fair share of road traffic collisions.... [read more...
Serious medical accidents triple in ten years
Data released by NHS Digital has revealed that the number of hospital attendances caused by medical accidents has tripled over the course of ten years. The number of patients who needed extra treatment due to an “unintentional cut, puncture, perforation... [read more...
Men don’t need to suffer domestic abuse in silence
It’s a common assumption that domestic abuse is a women’s issue – but it’s a wrong one. Men can experience domestic abuse in exactly the same way women can, and it can take many forms: physical, psychological, sexual, financial or emotional to name... [read more...
Firm appoints two new trainees
Barcan+Kirby are pleased to announce the appointment of two new trainee solicitors from within the firm, James Woodburn and Helena Bond, following a recruitment process which saw dozens of high quality applications.... [read more...
Half of all women ‘sexually harassed at work’
Research by the TUC suggests that more than half of women have experienced some form of sexual harassment at work. In most cases the perpetrator was male with one in five women (17%) reporting harassment by someone with authority over them.... [read more...
Becoming a dementia-friendly firm
We’re pleased to announce that Barcan+Kirby has taken the first steps towards becoming a dementia-friendly law firm. Anna Molter, of our Wills + trusts team, recently attended awareness training to become a ‘Dementia Friend’. The training looked at... [read more...
Four things to do before you die
Smart planning for the future has never been more important. With economic uncertainty looming on the horizon, we all want to retain that feeling of control over our own lives as well as our legacies after we’re gone.... [read more...
Could it be sepsis? The question all clinicians should ask
The new NICE guidelines published today are a positive step forward for future victims of sepsis. Following high profile campaigns by families such as William Mead’s and organisations like the Sepsis Trust, it’s beyond doubt that a change in how medical... [read more...
Four reasons to get a prenup
A prenuptial agreement, or prenup, doesn’t fall under most people’s definitions of ‘romantic’. After all, the whole point of marriage is supposed to be about a lifelong commitment, isn’t it? Maybe so, but with one third of UK marriages ending in... [read more...
Are ‘silver divorces’ leading to an increase in Will disputes?
When an application for divorce is made, many people see it as an opportunity to make a fresh start – and the over 60s are no exception.... [read more...
Where there’s a Will… there’s a war
You may think that writing a Will is the easiest and most effective way to stop any arguments after your death. But according to some people, the deceased doesn’t always know best. Contesting a Will isn’t easy – it can be emotionally draining, costly... [read more...
Domestic abuse charity to close children’s services
Bristol-based domestic abuse service Survive is due to close four of its six children’s services, after funding from two private donors worth £250,000 fell through.... [read more...
How no fault divorce could reduce stress for families
Although divorce has been made less stressful over the years through initiatives such as mediation, it remains a difficult and often draining process for separating couples and their families. Resolution, an organisation which represents the family law... [read more...
Barcan+Kirby launches Healthcare Complaint Hub
We’re pleased to announce the launch of our Healthcare Complaint Hub – a new resource for patients who wish to make a complaint to the NHS about the care or treatment they’ve received.... [read more...
96% of clients would recommend our service
It’s been just over a year since we became Barcan+Kirby and in that time we’ve gone from strength to strength. Your perception of us and our service is important to us. We value all client feedback and are committed to using it to continually improve... [read more...
How to claim legal aid for domestic abuse
If you’re trying to leave an abusive relationship, the last thing you want to worry about is how you're going to pay for legal protection from domestic abuse. Legal aid has been cut for most family law cases, such as divorce and child arrangements,... [read more...
Firm announces new Partner + Senior Associate appointments
We’re delighted to announce two internal promotions to Partner and Senior Associate status. Sasha Jacques has been promoted to the post of Partner, with effect from April 1 2016. Since qualifying in 2002, Sasha has specialised in residential conveyancing... [read more...
Do you have a legal right to see your grandchildren?
As a grandparent, you play an increasingly important role in modern family life and probably spend more time with your grandchildren than ever before. But if the family breaks up, what happens to you? If you’ve been denied contact or you’re worried... [read more...
Britain’s 2025 economy to be driven by army of ‘grey go-getters’
Research conducted by Barcan+Kirby in our new Citizen 2025 white paper reveals leagues of skilled, experienced and flexible grey go-getters will be driving the British economy come 2025. Our figures reveal that 4.1m (56%) of those currently aged over 55... [read more...
Decoding divorce: Barcan+Kirby signs up to national research
If you follow the news about the changing nature of relationships and families, you won’t be amazed to learn that 42% of marriages end in divorce.... [read more...
Over 1,100 serious healthcare mishaps in four years
A report today has revealed that the number of ‘never events’ which took place in NHS services since 2012 is over 1,100.... [read more...
Client story | £115,000 following knee replacement surgery
When you go to hospital or the doctor’s surgery for a routine procedure such as a knee replacement, you don’t expect it to go awry. After all, we trust the healthcare professionals who carry out surgery on our bodies to take reasonable care on our... [read more...
Barcan+Kirby make £8,599 donation to Macmillan
At Barcan+Kirby we’re proud of the support we give to charitable causes, both local and national. This year our chosen charity is Macmillan Cancer Support, and we’re delighted that we’ve just been able to hand them £8,599.28. The money will help... [read more...
Missed sepsis diagnosis costs lives
The recent story regarding the death of William Mead, aged one, and its implications around out-of-hours healthcare should give us all pause for thought. An NHS report into William’s case sheds some light on how a compendium of errors resulted in a... [read more...
Eight medical mistakes which should never have happened
Doctors in Bristol have made eight ‘potentially deadly’ errors in the last year, according to an investigation by the Bristol Post. Data released by the NHS shows that eight preventable mistakes – known as ‘never events’ – were recorded between... [read more...
Think your boss can’t read your Facebook messages? Think again.
Picture the scene: it’s 4 o’clock on a Friday afternoon in January. You’ve finished your report, made all your calls and finally cleared the last of the festive decorations from your desk. What to do in that last hour before the weekend? A glance... [read more...
We’re heading back to school for Road Safety Week!
We’re delighted to be supporting the Brain Injury Group in this year’s Road Safety Week campaign. Running November 23rd to 29th, this year’s theme is ‘drive less, live more’ and aims to improve road safety and the environment by reducing the... [read more...
Client story | £267,000 settlement for missed fracture
For most of us, a fracture is a routine injury and one that the majority of us will make a full recovery from. But whilst thousands of us are treated for fractures each year, mistakes can happen, due to inadequate checks, an inexperienced doctor or the... [read more...
Top tier ranking for clinical negligence team
We’re delighted to announce that our medical negligence and personal injury teams have been recognised by Chambers in their 2016 guide to the UK’s legal profession. We’ve successfully retained our Band 1 ranking for clinical negligence and are the... [read more...
We’re Bristol Law Society’s Law Firm of the Year 2015!
We’re pleased to announce that Barcan+Kirby have scooped the 2015 Law Firm of the Year (less than 15 partners) award at the annual Bristol Law Society event. This accolade is awarded to firms that are able to demonstrate excellence in the provision of... [read more...
The Negligence + Damages Bill
The Negligence & Damages Bill recently passed its first reading unchallenged in the House of Commons. The Bill was introduced by MP Andy McDonald who seeks to find a ‘fairer and more sensible way’ to help bereaved people and people who have... [read more...
Firm makes eight internal promotions
We’re delighted to announce a number of internal promotions to Associate and Senior Associate level within the firm. Congratulations to Alex Castiglione, from our Commercial property team, and to two members of our Residential conveyancing team –... [read more...
Barcan+Kirby receive top tier Legal 500 ranking
We’re delighted to announce that our medical negligence and personal injury teams have once again been recognised by Legal 500, an independent guide to the UK’s legal services.... [read more...
Firm shortlisted for three awards by Bristol Law Society
We’re delighted to announce that Barcan+Kirby has been shortlisted in three categories at the forthcoming Bristol Law Society annual awards.... [read more...
Collaboration is key to a stress-free separation
Separation and divorce is undoubtedly one of the most stressful situations we can face. That's why we encourage couples to take a collaborative approach to managing their affairs. So how is it different? Collaborative practice has been designed to offer... [read more...
Case study: Client awarded £1m for Cauda Equina claim
Whilst rare, Cauda Equina Syndrome is a serious condition that occurs when the nerves at the base of the spine become trapped. Early diagnosis of Cauda Equina Syndrome is vital. It’s considered to be a surgical emergency and quick treatment of the... [read more...
Protecting your interests: Lasting power of attorney
Let's be honest; none of us want to think about a time when we can't make informed decisions ourselves. This change may happen suddenly - maybe as a result of an accident. Or more slowly, due to the onset of a condition such as Alzheimer’s or the... [read more...
Case study: Brain injury following motorcycle accident
As personal injury solicitors, we’re only too aware of how devastating the effects of a brain injury are. It can cause both physical and psychological changes, including thinking and learning difficulties, memory loss and behavioural and personality... [read more...
Negotiating the terms of your commercial lease
For fast-growing businesses, being in the right commercial premises at the right time is an important consideration. But negotiating the terms of your property lease can represent a significant challenge to those experiencing rapid expansion. Today’s... [read more...
Separating? Make sure you consider your options
If you're going through a divorce or separation, you have several options for addressing the practical and legal aspects of ending your relationship. Divorce rarely means going to court. But when it comes to fixed fees, mediation and collaborative law,... [read more...
Protect your home + assets against care fees
An ageing population and increased life expectancy will inevitably mean that more and more of us will require care in our later years. Family aren’t always able to meet these care needs, so if you’ve been cautious with your money, own your property or... [read more...
Firm raises £2,213 for local charity
As a firm, we're committed to supporting local charitable causes, with The Grateful Society chosen in 2014.... [read more...
Are we failing parents whose children are taken into care?
Our team of specialist lawyers are involved in this complicated and heartbreaking case. Social services can remove child after child from the same mother, without her being offered the help she needs to become a good-enough parent.... [read more...
Just how important is it to write a Will?
The importance of writing your Will should never be underestimated. But let’s be honest, it’s a difficult subject matter. That’s why so many of us choose to put it off until another day. Of course, we all know we should have a Will, but the... [read more...
Barcan+Kirby merger brings fresh proposition to Bristol legal market
Two leading Bristol solicitors firms, Barcan Woodward and Kirby Sheppard have today formally merged to become new firm Barcan+Kirby. Barcan+Kirby, which comprises 135 fee earners and support staff in eight offices across Bristol, will be led by former... [read more...
NHS complaints: A work in progress
The Health Select Committee has published its Report on “Complaints and Raising Concerns”. This follows on from a number of reports by different bodies in recent years looking at how the current system could be improved.... [read more...
Commercial contracts… What to look out for
Why do I need a commercial contract? Contracts are vital to business, and necessary from all levels from the conceptual ideas to the end product or service and everything between. Contract law is increasingly regulated by statute and European law. The... [read more...
I’m a celebrity… get me a quickie divorce
If you read any newspaper or gossip magazine these days there will inevitably be stories regarding celebrity couples who have been married 5 minutes and are getting a quickie divorce. But in reality is there such a thing? Our family law experts here at... [read more...
Barcan Woodward raises £4,163 for One25
Throughout 2014, we have all been hard at work, raising money for our chosen charity, One25. Our fundraising efforts have included bake sales, dress down Fridays and a sky dive back in the summer which involved three members of our team. We are delighted... [read more...
Injured by a vehicle on private property? New rules may apply.
Until recently the prospects of an injured person recovering compensation as a result of injury caused by a vehicle varied according to whether the accident occurred on private property or land to which the public had access due to the nature of the... [read more...
Midwifery Units V Hospital Care
The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) has published updated guidance advising that for pregnant women who are classified as low-risk and are likely to have a straightforward birth, midwife-led care is safer than hospital care.... [read more...
Adoptive families given access to £20m support fund
Adopting a child is a wonderful thing to do. It creates a new family unit, enabling a child to have a new start in life particularly as adoptive children have already faced the loss of their birth family. It’s therefore great news that the government has... [read more...
My NHS – creating transparency or muddying the waters?
My NHS is an NHS database published with the intention of improving transparency within the NHS. Whilst this may be seen as another step in the right direction in terms of publishing data on healthcare organisations and some consultants, what does the... [read more...
Clinical Negligence team celebrate 2015 Chambers ranking
Our medical negligence team at Barcan Woodward has again been placed in the highest banding in the annual Chambers Directory (UK) for the South West Region.... [read more...
Divorce: How to make it easier for your children
Divorce can create anxiety, worry, upset and frustration. It’s difficult enough as an adult to deal with such things but what must it be like for a child? Our team of specialist family lawyers have supported and guided countless families through the... [read more...
The introduction of ‘Presumption of Parental Involvement’
It has been announced that s11 of Children and Families Act 2014 will be introduced on 22nd October 2014. This introduces the presumption that ‘unless the contrary is shown, that involvement of that parent in the life of the child concerned... [read more...
Complaints about the NHS are Increasing
The Health and Social Care Information Centre has published its statistics on NHS written complaints between 2013 – 2014. These show an increase in the number of complaints received to 174,871, which is over 3,300 complaints each week. Over 80,000 of the... [read more...
Have you thought about your lasting legacy?
Writing a Will is something we all need to do. The process of writing it helps us to think about what we want to happen when we die and who we want to leave our estate to. It also offers us an opportunity to make bequests to charitable... [read more...
Personal Injury – Putting our client at the heart of the process.
As Personal Injury lawyers, we regularly deal with complex cases. These cases need expert legal experience and knowledge to understand the reasons for a claim and to make sure a satisfactory outcome is reached. However, there’s much more to it than... [read more...
Only 25% of people claim for a personal injury
It’s an interesting fact that only 25% of people who have suffered a personal injury make a claim. A new study by YouGov reveals that the number of personal injury victims who were willing to make a claim had actually fallen since 2013 when 29% of... [read more...
Claims against DIY Executors triple in 2013
The High Court has released disturbing figures which highlight the huge increase in claims for mishandling a deceased’s estate. Information provided by the Chancery Division, states that a staggering 368 claims were lodged for breach of fiduciary... [read more...
Why is it important to think about Estate Planning?
We all know that having a Will is important and everyone needs to have one. It not only sets out your wishes after your death. It also helps you to understand better your current and future estate, which could be worth more than you ever imagined. If... [read more...
Clinical Negligence can be avoided with better communication
Over the years our clinical negligence specialists have noticed that poor communication really sits at the heart of most of the medical and clinical negligence cases they see. Take this example. Poor communication between a clinician (GP, nurse,... [read more...
Barcan Woodward & Kirby Sheppard set to merge
We’re delighted to announce our intention to merge with fellow Bristol solicitors, Kirby Sheppard, a firm that shares many of our core values including our commitment to providing outstanding client service. We’re tremendously excited by this... [read more...
Park Rule Changes: A step into the unknown?
Most of us will have heard about the changes to park rules which are now taking place. Existing park rules may or may not survive these changes! You may live on a park where the same rules have been in place for years. From February 2015 the old rules, (and... [read more...
Firm awarded Law Society’s Lexcel accreditation
We’re delighted to announce that Barcan+Kirby has been awarded the prestigious Law Society’s mark of excellence, Lexcel. Lexcel is a recognised accreditation scheme for law firms and shows that we’ve met high client care and business management... [read more...
HMRC considers splitting IHT nil-rate band across trusts
It has come to light that HMRC has amended its proposal to split an individual's inheritance tax (IHT) nil-rate band (NRB) across trusts. The revised plans, which could come into force in 2015, mean that an individual would only have a £325,000... [read more...
Can medical negligence lead to amputation?
Amputation is a life-changing injury and one that involves a considerable period of readjustment. There are several factors which can lead to the loss of a limb, one of which is unfortunately medical negligence. There are numerous ways in which negligent... [read more...
Goodbye Compromise Agreements; hello Settlement Agreements
“Compromise Agreements" are now known as "Settlement Agreements" and are used to allow an employer and employee to terminate their employment relationship on agreed terms.... [read more...
Buyer beware: the case against DIY Wills & estate planning
We’re often asked by clients whether they can write a Will themselves. The answer is yes, of course, as long as you're aware of the risks involved in venturing down this particular path. Whether you look online or to an off-the-shelf pack, there’s... [read more...
Just 15% of people injured at work receive compensation
A joint report by APIL and the TUC has stated that 85% of people who are injured at work, or who become ill as a direct result of their job, fail to recover any compensation. The report, entitled ‘The Compensation Myth’, claims that in 2012/13... [read more...
Client awarded £83,000 following Gallbladder surgery
Keyhole surgery to remove your gallbladder – known as laparoscopic cholecystectomy – is one of the UK's most commonly performed operations. Many people who undergo this surgery do so because of complications caused by gallstones. But despite it being a... [read more...
One in ten estates will pay inheritance tax by 2018
According to research by the Institute of Fiscal Studies, the percentage of estates liable for inheritance tax will quadruple, rising from 2.6% in 2009-10 to 10% in 2018-19. The introduction of the transferable nil-rate band, coupled with a temporary halt... [read more...
Case study: £100k award for nerve damage
Whilst a hand injury may seem like a relatively minor complaint, the sensitivity and movement in our hands is so important to our everyday lives that a serious hand injury can be life changing. Damage to the nerves in your hands can be equally... [read more...
Couples to consider family mediation before court
Couples now have to consider family mediation before they are able to legally separate, under new laws announced in April 2014. The reforms have come as a result of the government attempting to dissuade separating couples from applying straight to the... [read more...
The importance of wider family in child contact disputes
We’re delighted to be supporting World Child Contact day, an annual event which highlights the difficulties faced by the many families who are affected by child residence and contact issues. As experienced family law solicitors, we regularly support... [read more...
Case study: Dad denied contact with his child
This Thursday marks World Child Contact Day, an annual event which highlights the difficulties faced by the many families who are affected by child residence and contact issues. When parents separate, it can be difficult to reach an amicable... [read more...
Beware the myth of common law spouse
Contrary to popular belief, there’s no such thing as common law marriage. In fact, the legal status of common law spouse – or the belief that couples who live together have the same rights as married couples – is a myth. As a cohabitee, you don’t... [read more...
Proposed New Dangerous Dog Law
There has been an increase in the number of dog attacks over recent months and as a result,there is a need to promote responsible ownership. The Government has acted and is re-evaluating the law governing dogs and their owners in the hope that the number of... [read more...
I do… but only with a prenup?
It’s a common misconception that prenups are only for the wealthy. Indeed, there are many reasons to consider a prenuptial agreement, even if you don’t have substantial pre-marriage assets to protect. After all, with over one in three modern marriages... [read more...
Parents in denial about impact of separation on children
Parents in the process of divorce are often in denial about how their separation has impacted their children, according to a recent survey. The report by parenting website Mumsnet polled 1,000 parents and 100 children separately to assess how... [read more...
Firm raises over £3,000 for local charities in 2013
Staff at Barcan Woodward have raised over £3,000 for two local good causes as part of last year’s fundraising activity. During 2013 we were proud to support two Bristol-based charities – One25, who help and support street sex-working women,... [read more...
T’is the season to… divorce?
The tabloid media will have you believe the Christmas period is the catalyst for a high percentage of relationship breakdowns and that January is actually boom time for family lawyers. In fact, January often sees twice as many couples begin divorce... [read more...
Settlement for nerve damage caused by surgery
Nerve damage can occur for a number of reasons, including medical negligence. If your nerve injury has occurred because of sub-standard care, you may be able to make a claim for compensation. Our nervous system is incredibly fragile. Nerves carry commands... [read more...
Firm’s charity & community work recognised by award
We’re pleased to announce that Barcan Woodward has won the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Firm of the Year award at this year’s Bristol Law Society’s annual awards dinner. We were also shortlisted for the President's Outstanding Contribution... [read more...
DIY probate: a risk worth taking?
For some Will executors, it can be tempting to go it alone when it comes to the probate process. Prices are rising and it’s inevitable that many will cut costs and try to do themselves what they would previously have paid a professional to do. But... [read more...
Legal aid still available for family mediation services
Government attempts to promote family mediation as an alternative means of resolving separation and custody battles are failing, according to reports. Ministry of Justice figures show that since the April 2013 cuts to legal aid, the number of couples... [read more...
Case study: Compartment syndrome after surgery
Compartment syndrome is a potentially serious condition caused by bleeding or swelling within an enclosed bundle of muscles. This restricts blood flow and can cause permanent damage to the muscles and nerves. Compartment syndrome usually occurs in the... [read more...
Top tier ranking for medical negligence team
We’re delighted to announce that our medical negligence and personal injury departments have been highly recommended by Legal 500, an independent guide to the UK’s legal services. We are one of only four firms in the South West to receive a top... [read more...
Team BW takes to the road & water for charity!
Members of the Barcan Woodward team have taken part in a number of fundraising events during September, including the Bristol half marathon and the annual dragon boat racing. We’ve now raised more than £1,200 during 2013 for two local charities –... [read more...
Personal injury claim? Don’t get caught out by insurers
A growing number of insurance companies are contacting victims of road traffic accidents and offering to settle their injury claims quickly without involving solicitors. This practice is known as ‘Third Party Capture’. This practice presents a... [read more...
Firm’s team limbering up for half marathon challenge
Six dedicated runners from Barcan Woodward will be taking part in the Bristol and Cardiff half marathons to raise funds for Bristol charities One25 and the Julian Trust. The team, comprising Katherine Moyse, Fiona Dabell, James Parsonage (all pictured... [read more...
Why your Will should be clear & unambiguous
When Joan Edwards bequeathed £520,000 to “whichever government is in office at the date of my death” she would never have anticipated the column inches that this would generate. But this story actually raises some important points, not only about... [read more...
Top ranking for firm in 2014 Chambers UK guide
We’re delighted to announce that our medical negligence and personal injury teams have been highly ranked as leading departments by Chambers UK 2014, a leading independent guide to the legal profession. We’ve successfully retained our Band 1... [read more...
The importance of choosing your executors carefully
One of the most important decisions you’ll need to make when writing your Will is who to choose as your executors. Your executor has an important and responsible role. It’s the executor who will manage your estate and affairs in the event of your... [read more...
Commons inquiry into whiplash claims
The Commons Transport Select Committee has revealed its long-awaited report on the cost of motor insurance. The report addresses government plans to cut the cost of whiplash claims, concluding that the cuts would only benefit claims management... [read more...
Case study: Compensation for head & brain injury
As personal injury lawyers, we’re only too aware of how devastating the effects of a brain injury can be; not just for the survivor, but also for their loved ones. It can cause both physical and psychological changes, including thinking and... [read more...
When is the right time to write or update your Will?
It’s a commonly-quoted statistic that 70% of the UK adult population doesn’t have a Will; however it’s a lesser known fact that the majority of Wills in place are out-of-date and in need of review or updating. In many ways, having an out-dated Will... [read more...
Jay Nathwani joins clinical negligence team
We’re pleased to announce that Jayshree Nathwani has joined the firm in the role of Associate. Jay joins the medical negligence team from Exeter based Parlett Kent, where she was appointed as Partner in 2005.... [read more...
Surgery suspended due to risk of harm to children
Children's surgery has been suspended at a private hospital in Surrey after the care regulator for England reported serious concerns about standards of care there.... [read more...
Case study: compensation for delayed cancer diagnosis
It was recently reported that a 26 year old woman from Bristol died from cervical cancer after her request for a smear (cervical screening) test was turned down due to her age. When Mrs Ryder first visited her GP with symptoms of cervical cancer,... [read more...
Divorcee danger: the perils of online & DIY divorce
A quickie divorce for £99? It’s an appealing headline and one that might make you think twice about instructing a solicitor. After all, how tricky can it be to manage your own divorce? With prices such as these, it’s easy to see why so many are... [read more...
Firm launches independent family mediation service
We’re pleased to announce the launch of Barcan Woodward Family Mediation – an independent practice that will enable us to provide family mediation services from each of our four Bristol offices.... [read more...
Claire Hurrell joins clinical negligence team
We’re pleased to announce that Claire Hurrell has joined the firm in the role of assistant solicitor. Claire joins the clinical and medical negligence team from Exeter-based Parlett Kent.... [read more...
The family mediation process: how does it work?
When it comes to family mediation, the important thing to remember is that you’re in control. By sitting down and negotiating, you’re taking charge of your own future. You’re making joint decisions about your separation, rather than having judgement... [read more...
The NHS has “a legal duty to be honest about mistakes”
The government has today announced a raft of measures intended to ensure that the NHS moves to eliminate lapses in patient care and safety. The most significant of these proposals is the legal duty of candour. These plans are to ensure that a Mid... [read more...
Secondary victims of personal injury & negligence
A senior judge has recently given judgment at an appeal hearing in a personal injury case concerning the issue of secondary victims. Secondary victim refers to someone who witnesses a traumatic event, such as the death of a loved one, and is... [read more...
Firm appoints Tom Powles as Partner
We're pleased to announce that Tom Powles of the family law team has been promoted to Partner.... [read more...
Why mediate? The benefits of family mediation
The use of mediation to resolve family disputes is already on the rise; however many anticipate that recent changes to the legal aid system will only increase its appeal as an alternative form of dispute resolution. As a result of legal aid changes,... [read more...
Firm provides free legal advice to community initiative
As a regional firm, the community within which we operate is integral to the way in which we do business. So we’re pleased to announce that we’re supporting Bedminster’s BID (Business Improvement District) proposal by providing them with legal... [read more...
Controversial restrictions on advice for RTA victims
As a result of Friday’s judgement in the Administrative Court, many people injured in road traffic accidents may no longer be able to obtain independent legal representation to claim compensation for the injuries they’ve sustained. High court... [read more...
Compensation settlement for injured cyclist
As a nation, we’re increasingly recognising the benefits that cycling can bring for both work and leisure. However, as personal injury lawyers we’re also very aware of how vulnerable cyclists can be, with an increase in the popularity of using... [read more...
Firm achieves 98% client satisfaction rating in 2012
Throughout 2012, we received 96 completed feedback forms and we’re delighted with what you’ve told us. As well as achieving an overall client satisfaction rating of 98% (for which you were ‘very satisfied’ or ‘fairly satisfied’), you told us... [read more...
Firm announces 2013 charities of the year
We’re proud to announce that we’re supporting One25 and The Julian Trust Night Shelter as our 2013 charities of the year. As the only organisation in Bristol to support street sex-working women, One25 helps around 300 vulnerable individuals per... [read more...
Changes to legal aid for victims of domestic violence
The Legal Aid, Sentencing & Punishment of Offenders (LASPO) Bill became law in May 2012 and reforms were introduced in April 2013. The act makes some changes that have implications for victims of domestic violence and their ability to access legal... [read more...
How will legal aid changes affect your family?
With effect from April 1st, the scope of services covered by legal aid was reduced significantly and legal aid funding has been withdrawn for the most frequently-seen family disputes. However legal aid for mediation is still available and can be used... [read more...
Is it ethical to sue the NHS?
The NHS – created from the ideal that good healthcare should be available to all at their point of need – is one of our proudest achievements, not just from a medical perspective, but also for social justice. So, if something does go wrong with your... [read more...
A “top-notch Bristol firm” – Chambers UK 2013
Barcan Woodward’s clinical negligence team has been highly ranked as a leading department by Chamber UK 2013, an independent guide to the UK legal profession. We are also the only firm in Bristol and the surrounding area to receive a band 1 ranking... [read more...
Firm highly ranked by Chambers UK 2013
We're delighted to announce that Chambers UK 2013, an independent guide to the UK legal profession, has ranked the firm highly in two specialist practice areas. We are also pleased to confirm that 3 of our Partners have been recommended as... [read more...
Case study: getting the most out of technology
Justine Tipling, Barcan Woodward's Systems Manager, talks to SOS Connect about how we're maximising our use of technology to improve the legal services we offer our clients.... [read more...
Firm makes new Associate Solicitor appointments
Barcan+Kirby is delighted to announce a number of senior internal appointments to Associate status. Myfanwy Buckeridge and Adrian Stone have been promoted from Senior Solicitor to Associate Solicitor, with both now taking a more active role... [read more...
Inquest into child’s death following misdiagnosis
Our clinical negligence team has successfully represented the family of a two year old girl at an inquest into her death following an incorrect diagnosis by emergency services. Georgia Keeling died from a meningitis-type infection leading to sepsis, after... [read more...
A legal definition for ‘needs’ upon divorce
The Law Commission launched a supplemental consultation paper last week with the aim of seeking to provide a legal definition of the term “needs”. Family lawyers have been used to running these arguments in courts for years but without specific... [read more...
Charity cycle for firm’s partner
On Saturday 8th September, Richard Barcan will be taking to his bike saddle and setting off on this year’s Deloitte Ride Across Britain challenge in aid of The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity through The Sam Keen Foundation. This gruelling trek will see... [read more...
Compensation for hip replacement patient
Hip replacement surgery is one of the most common procedures performed in the UK, often to resolve issues of debilitating pain and restricted mobility. For many people, a hip replacement offers them a new lease of life. But sometimes things go wrong and... [read more...
What do we have in common with Bradley Wiggins?
Aside from the initials ‘BW’, your first response will probably be a resounding “nothing”. On the surface, you’re not wrong. For as the first ever British winner of Le Tour, Wiggins’ victory is, according to Olympic gold medallist Sir Chris... [read more...
Divorce from abroad for British expats
When a relationship breaks down, the natural reaction is for people to turn to their extended support network of friends and family. But for many expats, this isn’t always immediately possible. For people living abroad, there may be added... [read more...
Charity cycle for the SKF
As we announced in March, we are proud to be supporting the Royal Marsden Hospital as our 2012 charity of the year. Our choice of charity was motivated by the death of Sam Keen, Richard Barcan’s nephew. Sam died in November 2011 from malignant... [read more...
Firm meets local MP to discuss legal aid changes
Katie Donne and Clare Cox, of Barcan Woodward’s clinical negligence and family law teams, have met with Stephen Williams MP, constituency MP for Bristol West, to discuss the consequences of parliament passing the LASPO bill last week. Reforms in the... [read more...
New decision on civil partnership breakdown
The 2005 introduction of civil partnerships was a social and legal landmark. By allowing same sex couples to legally recognise their partnership, the Civil Partnerships Act 2004 provided similar legal rights and protections afforded to married... [read more...
Controversial legal aid bill set to become law
The government’s bill to cut legal aid in England is set to become law, and now awaits Royal Assent. As a result of the reforms, all divorce, finance, and private law children cases, subject to exceptions, will be removed from the scope of legal aid... [read more...
Will I? Won’t I?
It's a well published fact that the majority of adults in the UK don’t have a valid will in place. But given that it's such an important document - one that impacts the emotional and financial wellbeing of the ones we love - the obvious question... [read more...
Care applications hit 10,000 in one year
The number of care applications in the UK rose by more than 10% in the last financial year, taking the total number of children in care to over 10,000 for the first time. It was revealed last week that new applications to take children into care have... [read more...
Firm influence national medical practice
Claire Levene of Barcan+Kirby Solicitors explains how making a claim can protect others and inform clinical practice. As a result of her work patients undergoing weight loss surgery will now receive potentially life saving follow up. Many of our clients... [read more...
Police pensions & divorce
With the divorce courts looking to create equality between separating spouses, we have to consider pensions - often a major asset to be divided. When a court orders that an individual's pension must be shared, the former spouse is allocated a... [read more...