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Lesley Herbertson

Lesley is a Partner at Hugh James and a leading medical negligence solicitor with over 30 years’ experience in dealing with catastrophic and serious injury medical negligence cases.

She was a Partner and the Head of the Medical Negligence Department at Alexander Harris, which merged with Irwin Mitchell in 2005. Lesley joined Potter Rees Dolan in 2010 and became a Partner there in 2017. She is currently a Partner and senior member of the Medical Negligence team in the Manchester office of Hugh James.

Lesley specialises in all aspects of claimant medical negligence for both adults and children, but particularly in cases of maximum severity including cerebral palsy and other complex birth injuries, brain and spinal injuries, as well as cauda equina and amputation cases. She also deals with a range of other types of case including those involving chronic pain, fatality, obstetric, gynaecological and more general surgical injuries.

Lesley’s most notable high value settlements include £11 million for a young client with cerebral palsy who had a much-reduced life expectancy in 2016. More recently, Lesley was successful in a claim for a baby born with a congenital heart condition who contracted sepsis. This case settled in December 2020 for a lump sum of £8 million plus a series of increasing periodical payments with the capitalised value of the claim in the region of £17.5 million. In 2022, Lesley secured £4.3 million for a young man who had suffered an above knee amputation and £12 million for a client who suffered a brain injury following the failure to treat bacterial meningitis when he was only a baby.

In July 2023, she secured an interim payment of £2.2 million for purchase and adaptation of a property for a client in her 30s who has suffered a severe brain injury to live with her 3 young daughters and parents as well as her care team.  Lesley is well respected and liked by clients, experts and counsel alike, and she has a straightforward and pragmatic approach to dealing with Defendant solicitors.

Career History and Education

  • University of Cambridge, MA Law: 1987
  • College of Law, 1st Class Honours: 1988
  • Trained at Pannone and Partners: 1988-1990
  • Qualified at Pannone and Partners: 1990
  • Solicitor at Pannone and Partners: 1990-1993
  • Partner at Alexander Harris: 1993-2004
  • Senior Associate at Irwin Mitchell: 2004-2010
  • Partner at Potter Rees Dolan: 2010-2022
  • Partner at Hugh James: 2022-


  • HM: £17.5 million for multiple orthopaedic injuries (and cognitive injury) caused by MRSA in early life (2020)
  • BW:£4.3 million for man in 20s with above-knee amputation (2022)
  • CS: £12 million for brain injured teenager who suffered untreated bacterial meningitis as a baby (2022)
  • CW: Judgement for young woman who has suffered cognitive deficit, poor educational attainment and anxiety further to meningitis as a baby which was inadequately treated (2022)
  • JK: interim payment of £2.2 million to buy and adapt property for young mum with severe brain injury following cardiac arrest due to undiagnosed and untreated cardiac condition (2023)
  • MW: £900,000 when a brain injured claimant died and his case became a fatal case (2023)


  • AvMA Clinical Negligence Panel
  • Law Society Clinical Negligence Accreditation Panel
  • APIL member and Senior Litigator
  • Manchester Law Society Member


  • Basic french