Nicola Heales

Nicola is a Consultant in the Personal and Serious Injury team.

Nicola is a very experienced Personal and Serious Injury solicitor who has specialised in severe and catastrophic injury claims, acting for both children and adults for the last 20 years.

She has a particular interest in acquired brain injury, rehabilitation and ‘capacity’ and is a firm believer that the early introduction of rehabilitation assists all parties to bring claims to a satisfactory resolution. Nicola adopts a multi-discipline approach, liaising with the medical team, case managers and the Court of Protection where necessary.

Nicola also acts in claims involving severe sexual abuse, psychiatric injury and professional negligence arising from claims handled unsuccessfully by other lawyers.

Nicola has an MSc in Brain Injury Rehabilitation from the University of Wales, Swansea- the first lawyer to have been awarded this postgraduate degree. Nicola is also a Visiting Lecturer with Birmingham University and the University of Gloucestershire and a Lay Member of the Medical Research and Ethics Committee for Wales and of the Public Health Committee for Wales.

Nicola is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine and of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL). She is a Member of the Law Society’s Personal Injury Panel, the Association of Child Abuse Lawyers (ACAL), the Spinal Injury Association (SIA), the British Association of Brain Injury Case Managers (BABICM), the Medico-Legal Society (London), the United Kingdom Brain Injury Forum (UK ABIF), the Brain Injury Social Work Group (BISWIG) and the British Neuropsychiatry Association, and she is accredited with Headway. Nicola is an APIL-accredited specialist and assessor for brain-injury litigation.

Key Experience:

  • A claim relating to severe brain injuries from a motorbike accident which resulted in epilepsy was settled at £3.5 million. This case was reported in relation to whether or not there was an obligation to repay the Independent Living Fund.  It was held that there was no obligation to repay.
  • A brain-injury claim against the Ministry of Defence, because the claimant was injured while on active service, resulted in damages of £770,000.
  • Mediation of a severe head-injury claim involving the opening of an earlier settlement, together with a professional negligence claim, resulted in a settlement of £1.5 million.
  • A serious head-injury claim by a pillion passenger on a motorbike resulted in awarded damages of £4.0 million — at the time the largest award and first structured settlement in Queensland, Australia.

Career History:

  • 2015: Consultant, Blaser Mills
  • 2011–2015: Head of Department, Head and Brain Injuries, Brethertons LLP
  • 2009: MSc in Brain Injury Rehabilitation, University of Wales
  • 2008–2011: Consultant, Clarke Willmott Catastrophic Injury Team
  • 2004–2005:  Partner, Guys Claimant Personal Injury
  • 2000–2004:  Partner, Penleys Personal Injury
  • 1996–1999:  Partner, Boyes Turner Personal Injury
  • 1991–1996: Partner, Tayntons Personal Injury
  • 1982: LL B, University of Southampton

 

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