Category: Company News

Landlord in court for endangering young mother and her child

gas oven dangerous

A Plymouth landlord has been fined after a dangerous gas oven was installed in the house a young mother was renting from him with her child.

What happened?

Giles Boardman was asked to provide a gas safety certificate for the property on several occasions, but when he failed to do so, Plymouth City Council alerted the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

Mr Boardman was then served with an Improvement Notice, which required him to provide a landlords’ gas safety check – but he still hadn’t done so by the time the notice had expired.
Later that year, Mr Boardman called in an engineer who found issues with the gas controls that controlled the gas flow to the oven.

It was labelled as ‘immediately dangerous’ by the engineer, stating that it could cause immediate danger to life or property if kept connected to the gas supply. The oven has since been replaced.

What was the outcome?

Giles Boardman was fined a total of £4,050 and ordered to pay costs of £513, after pleading guilty to breaches of gas safety regulations and a breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act.

HSE Inspector, Simon Jones, said:

“Landlords have a legal duty to carry out gas safety checks which
are there to protect their tenants from death or injury.

“In this case, Mr Boardman ignored repeated requests to carry out
the checks and as a result, a serious fault with the oven
went undetected until discovered by an engineer.”

If you have been affected by an incident such as this, and you would like expert advice, contact Hampson Hughes Solicitors today on 0800 888 6888 or email

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Hampson Hughes Solicitors take on China in latest charity challenge


Six weeks from now Paul, Laura and Stephen Hampson will be getting on their bikes to cycle 450km’s up & over the mountains of the Great Wall of China in a grueling cycling challenge.

The trio are fundraising for the Hampson Hughes Charitable Foundation,which supports charities that assist those in need as a result of youth, age, ill health, disability or financial hardship.

In 2014 the proceeds will go to four nominated charities, which were put forward and voted on by staff and the trustees.

The four nominated charities are: Positive Futures, Alder Hey Children’s Charity, Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) and CHIC’s Children’s Cancer Support Group.

You can show your support & help to raise money for these very important causes via our Just Giving page.

Gold Standard for Hampson Hughes Solicitors


Hampson Hughes Solicitors, specialists in no win no fee personal injury compensation, has been awarded the Investors in People Gold standard.

It now joins the top 7% of accredited organisations from across the UK who believe in realising the potential of their people.

The accolade is a huge coup for the Liverpool based law firm, which was set up by childhood friends Paul Hampson and John Hughes in 2009.

Just 28 years old at the time, the two solicitors moved back into family homes in Huyton in order to be able to afford the rent at a small office above a double glazing shop in Woolton Village.

Through hard work and continually reinvesting in its people, Hampson Hughes Solicitors now employs 223 staff at its Edward Pavilion offices based on the Albert Dock.

Commenting on the new kite mark, John Hughes said: “We’re thrilled to receive this award as much of the success of Hampson Hughes Solicitors can be attributed to its people, many of whom have grown with the business and now hold senior positions within the firm.

“Entrepreneurial by nature, we’re deliberately not run like a traditional law firm, which means innovation can come from any part of the business and we activity encourage and reward good ideas that contribute to the continued growth of the company.”

Paul Devoy, Head of Investors in People, said: “We’d like to congratulate Hampson Hughes Solicitors on their Gold standard. Such a high level of accreditation is the sign of great people management practice, and demonstrates a commitment to staff development and shows an organisation committed to being the very best it can be. Hampson Hughes Solicitors should be extremely proud of their achievement.”

Steve Burrows, Managing Director of Investors in People North of England said: “This is a fantastic achievement for Hampson Hughes Solicitors and I would like to congratulate the team on their success. We believe that good people make a great business and as a proven organisational development framework, Investors in People is designed to help organisations and their people to realise potential, enhance performance and meet goals. With their Gold accreditation, Hampson Hughes Solicitors is certainly working to realise their people potential.”

For more information about Investors in People please visit

Thousands of frail and elderly NHS patients sent home at night


An analysis of recent figures has revealed that thousands of frail and elderly patients are being sent home from hospital late at night or in the early hours of the morning.

What were the findings?

The figures show that over 150,000 patients, including 18,500 over 75-year-olds, were sent home from hospital between the hours of 11pm and 6am over the past year.

There have also been concerns that dementia patients are often being sent back to their care homes late at night, during hours where medical staff are unable to notify the homes if there have been any changes in care.

In one case, Michael Atkinson, who had suffered from a stroke, was discharged from the Royal Bolton Hospital at 3.30am. The 64-year-old was later found in a cricket field, in freezing temperatures, and in a very confused state.

The hospital claims that Mr Atkinson left before transport could be arranged, but is investigating the reason why he was discharged at such an hour.

What can be done?

Campaigners say that many of these late-dismissals are due to the pressure placed on hospitals to free up beds for urgent A&E cases.

Chairman of the Patients Association, Dr Mike smith, said:

“They have people in A&E lying in corridors, they have got to
be admitted and they have no beds.

“It’s for the convenience of staff and the person they are admitted but
at the gross detriment to the person they are chucking out.”

Though senior doctors have questioned some of the findings, NHS England has labelled the practice unacceptable, and said that patients should be discharged only if they want to go home and it is safe for them to do so.

A spokesman for NHS England said:

“Discharging patients at night without appropriate support is
unacceptable, particularly if a patient is vulnerable.

“Where a patient wishes to leave late at night it should be accommodated
only where it is clinically appropriate and with the
support of family, friends or carers.”

If you, or a loved one, have been affected by medical negligence, and you would like expert advice, contact the Hampson Hughes Solicitors Medical Negligence Team today on 0151 242 1025 or email

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Landlord not carrying out repairs? Know your remedies – raising awareness of tenant rights


If you are living in rented accommodation, where the landlord is simply not carrying out the necessary repairs, you may have options in ensuring that the repairs are carried out.

Many people feel that when a landlord does not uphold his or her stated intention to carry out repair work, the tenant has very little right of recourse.

However, an action can be brought against the landlord in order to force the landlord to complete the repairs. This is an action that can be brought whilst you are still living in the property.

Many feel that, whilst they are living in the property, a landlord has overall control and that there is nothing a tenant can do if repairs aren’t being carried out. However, a tenant does have a right to recourse if the landlord is not co-operating when it comes to carrying out repairs.

A common scenario is that people enter into a tenancy agreement (often for periods of 6 months or 12 months) having only viewed a property briefly. Early on in a tenancy period, issues such as mould or leaks begin to arise.

A tenant only becomes aware of how a landlord will behave after these issues have arisen.

In order to give your a landlord the opportunity to carry out repairs, we recommend reporting issues to the landlord as soon as they become a problem. If the issues continue, tenants often believe that they have no option but to urge the landlord to carry out the repairs.

However, the ability to force the landlord to carry out the repairs does exist. We recommend contacting a solicitor at the earliest opportunity in order to discuss your options.

Do not allow a landlord take advantage of your good nature.

If you have notified your landlord of disrepair, and you are not completely satisfied with the response from your landlord, contact Hampson Hughes’ Andrew Fairman today to discuss your options. Call 0800 888 6888 or email .

Accidents at Work – Employer’s Liability and Claimants


by Andrew Fairman

Accidents and injuries at work remain a prevalent issue. This was recently highlighted in an incident in Rochdale, wherein a man became trapped in a machine. The man suffered crush injuries, and faced contamination from the chemicals used within the machine.

A harrowing thought that you could go to work and become injured during the normal course of your employment duties. If the unfortunate does occur, it is important to know what you can do in order to put yourself in the best position to recover from your accident.

Accidents at work can range from small occurrences, such as a simple trip over equipment, to a severe accident, such as the one which recently occurred in a factory in Rochdale.

Nevertheless, each incident should be treated the same way. Taking action against the employer with whom the fault lies should be considered, as the claimant should receive adequate compensation (assisting in a return to the quality of life enjoyed prior to the injury).

Employers have many obligations relating to their employees, including ensuring that their employees are:

  • operating in a safe environment
  • provided with that correct and safe equipment
  • provided with a safe and correct system of work

An employee must ensure that these requirements are upheld. Where these requirements are not in place, and an injury occurs as a result, liability will rest with the employer. The employee will be able to bring an action to recover compensation for the injury sustained.

The Enterprise Act took effect in October of 2013. This act provides that claimants will now have to prove the element of negligence on behalf of their employers, rather than simply relying on a breach of a regulation.

Yet, this does not – and should not – preclude claimants from bringing an action.

Whilst this does represent a change from the previous position held under the case of Stark v Post Office, and does remove the previous elements of strict liability on defendant employers for certain aspects, it does not restrict a claimant’s action where a Defendant employer has not followed the correct procedure.

If an employer has not taken the reasonable steps to prevent an accident, or to comply with the relevant regulations, a claimant will be able to show that the Defendant employer has been negligent in not implementing regulations and the Defendant employer will still be liable.

In an uncertain world, the changes to Employer’s Liability and the implementation of the Enterprise Act do suggest that a claimant will have to work harder to prove breach of duty by an employer. However, this does not mean that an employer can act unreasonably and that a claimant can have no recourse.

With incident’s such as the recent occurrence in the Rochdale factory we are reminded that accident’s at work remain a serious issue, and that employers should face recourse and sanctions where they have failed to act reasonably.

If you have been injured in an accident at work, contact Hampson Hughes Solicitors today on 0800 888 6888 or email

Industrial Hearing Loss


Prolonged exposure to excessive noise can result in hearing impairment. Many employees are required to work in very noisy environments, which puts them at risk of industrial hearing loss (also known as occupational deafness or noise-induced hearing loss).

The introduction of acts to control noise levels in the workplace has seen the prevalence of industrial hearing loss fall, yet it still affects 14,000 people in the UK and 10,000,000 people in the US.

What causes industrial hearing loss?

Persistent sounds of 80 dB or more or sounds reaching a peak of 135 dB can cause industrial hearing loss. Such noise levels are created by mass-produced hand-held power tools such as drills, grinders, and nail guns. Industrial machines and processes can be associated with significantly greater noise.

In many professions, loud noise is an inevitable consequence of the nature of the work being carried out. For example construction, engineering, factory production, mining, textile manufacturing, iron/steel works, heavy fabrication, motor vehicle production, ship building.

Employees in such industries are regularly exposed to consistently high noise levels that, without adequate ear protection, can damage the structures of the ear and reduce the ability to hear.

What are the symptoms of industrial hearing loss?

The symptoms of industrial hearing loss build up gradually over time and are often dismissed as part of the aging process. They include temporary or permanent lack of hearing in one or both ears, difficulty hearing conversations or the TV/radio, and constant noise from within the ear(s) (typically ringing, buzzing, hissing, roaring or ticking) that impairs concentration and the ability to follow conversations (tinnitus).

Industrial hearing loss includes varying degrees of hearing impairment (which may be temporary or permanent), tinnitus (ringing in the ears), and acoustic trauma (ear damage caused by a sudden loud noise, e.g., feedback through headset, or a series of loud noises, e.g., gun fire).

Can industrial hearing loss be treated?

Hearing loss is extremely difficult to treat. However, if the signs are picked up early further hearing damage can be avoided.

There is no known cure for tinnitus. Sufferers must rely on long-term treatments such as the use of ‘de-tinnitising’ amplifiers to override the sounds of tinnitus or sound therapy classes to help retrain how the ear processes sounds.

Prevention of industrial hearing loss

It is possible to prevent industrial hearing loss by taking measures to reduce noise levels and ensuring that adequate ear protection is used effectively if noise cannot be reduced to a safe level.

It is the responsibility of the employer to protect the hearing of their employees and policies and guidelines have been developed to help them meet this. Employers are required to ensure that their workers are informed about the dangers of working in an environment where noise levels are high, to provide appropriate ear protection and enforce correct usage of the protective devices they issue.

The use of ear protection should be enforced if noise levels consistently exceed 80 dB or if sounds reach a peak of 135 dB. Average noise levels in the working environment must not exceed 87 dB (taking hearing protection into account).

Case studies of industrial hearing loss

Boat repairer

Charles had been exposed daily to the loud noises of hydraulic impacts from various machines during 10 years as a labourer in a factory that made and repaired boat motors. The high noise levels had become so commonplace to Charles that they no longer bothered him and he did not wear ear protection on a regular basis.

When Charles noticed that he was having difficulty hearing what people said to him more often and could not hear certain sounds, he sought medical advice. Charles was diagnosed with tinnitus and permanent hearing loss in both ears. Shocked by the extent of the damage Charles made sure that he always wore ear protection at work. He also began researching how to claim for compensation from his employer for neglecting to ensure his safety at work.

Iron worker

Whilst at work at a smelting works, Frank was surrounded by continuous extreme noise every working day for 35 years. Frank described the noise as being so excessive that he could not hear himself think. However, over time he became accustomed to the noise, not realising that it was causing lasting damage to his hearing.

Frank started to miss more and more of normal conversations, especially if there was background noise, and was suffering from ringing sounds in both his ears. Frank was diagnosed as having severe noise-induced hearing loss and tinnitus in both ears.

Following a claim for negligence, he received compensation from his employer for not protecting him from the noisy work environment.

Steel fitter

Malcolm had spent most of his working life as a fitter. He explained that there had always been very loud noise across the site “Noise was transmitted from the machines used to roll the steel. There were two furnaces, underground hydraulics and a roughing mill”.

He was not provided with any ear protection for the first 20 years he worked as a fitter, and wearing ear protection was not made compulsory for another five years after that. Malcolm began to struggle hearing everything that was being said to him and suffered hissing in his right ear.

The symptoms worsened over the years and Malcolm was diagnosed with industrial hearing loss and tinnitus. By the time of the diagnosis, it was too late to save his hearing, but his compensation payment helped him to buy quality equipment to help him hear better.

Further information on Industrial hearing loss


Traumatic Brain Injury – Survivors

Who is this person? Why has he changed? He doesn’t seem to be the same person anymore? Why is he aggressive towards me? Why is he always angry? Why doesn’t he think before he says such hurtful things?

Do these questions sound familiar?
These are questions that have been regularly put to Hampson Hughes by the mother of a brain injured young man. Joanne is a solicitor specialising in Traumatic Brain Injury at Hampson Hughes. Joanne acts for David, this lady’s son who was involved in a serious road traffic collision almost 3 years ago and suffered what the medics described a severe traumatic brain injury. Joanne has been involved with David and his family since David’s admission to hospital following this horrific accident. David is Joanne’s client but due to the severe nature of his injury, the devastation has also hit his nearest and dearest and his family’s lives have been turned upside down. She has been the point of contact for the family from the outset.

When in hospital David was placed in a medically induced coma in order that the medical team could allow his brain to effectively switch off and heal. They monitored his progress and after a few days he was slowly brought back to consciousness. When David did come around, he had no memory of the accident nor did he know why he was in hospital. He didn’t really understand what all the fuss was about. He was frightened and convinced himself that he was being kept against his will. His family were devastated that he did not initially recognise them. He was aggressive, he shouted at the nurses, he was confused. As time went on, it became apparent that David was not able to feed himself. He was so confused that he did not realise the food that had been placed in front of him, was in fact, his. His mum, visited the hospital each and every day for 8 hours in order that she was there for mealtimes so that she could physically feed David and ensure he was getting the nutrients his body needed. David was not able to walk so his mum would take care of his personal hygiene by wheeling him into the wet room and showering him. David’s mum did all of this on auto pilot. She wanted to care for her son. On discharge, David lived with his parents and they did everything for him. He was not able to return to his pre accident employment as an electrician. He had lost all of his friends. He did not want to socialise. His brothers and sisters who were adults did not understand what had happened and how he had been affected by his brain injury. This injury caused a rift in the family and this proved stressful for everyone involved. He felt very alone. David became depressed. He was a different person with different feelings. He suffered extreme fatigue which meant by 2pm each day, he felt as though he had hit a brick wall.

Nearly 3 years down the line, she wonders how she managed. She would say, ‘I just had to. I am his mum.’ David’s mum and dad have suffered depression as a result of the injury which he sustained. They continue to struggle with the illness and more recently, reality has hit home again for David’s mum. She has had to seek counselling for relatives of a brain injured person. Joanne has found a lady who specifically deals with brain injury and has put much needed counselling in place for David’s mum and dad as their lives have been devastated by what has happened to their son. Although David is now living independently of them as his parents, he will never be independent in the sense that we understand the meaning of independent to be. He lives with a team of support workers who Joanne has put in place. They specialise in supporting those who have suffered a traumatic brain injury. Joanne has sourced an excellent neuropsychologist who treats David weekly to deal with his anxiety and depression as well as the things that come up which cause him undue stress. David is not able to do a lot on his own so Joanne has put in place an occupational therapist who can help with the tasks that he struggles with and ensures that he is safe when he does his ironing and cooking. David is not able to manage his own affairs due to memory and concentration problems. He is very impulsive which means he struggles to plan. This means that he cannot plan the day ahead like we all do each and every day. He is not able to cook on his own as his safety would be severely compromised. He is not able to work at all as his fatigue sets in by early afternoon and this prevents him from doing anything other than what is absolutely necessary. The support team help with his activities of daily living which include supporting him with his household chores, his post that comes in, making medical appointments, and preparing and cooking meals to ensure he eats a balanced diet. David has now reached a plateau in his recovery and the support which he has in place will remain for the rest of his life. This may sound daunting but as a parent, they are happy and safe in the knowledge that David will be cared for by the team and will be financially looked after even when they are no longer able to be around. All of this has been arranged and put in place by David’s legal team at Hampson Hughes.

A Traumatic Brain Injury does not just affect the person who has suffered the injury. The family are those closest and often it is they who notice the severe or subtle changes in their loved one. It is more often the case that the injured person has no real insight into how they have been affected and they often think it is those around them who have changed. This is a common occurrence. It must be remembered though that help is available for families who are also suffering as a result of Traumatic Brain Injury.

Hampson Hughes & apprentice Chantelle Owens receive awards from Liverpool Chamber of Commerce

We are delighted to announce Hampson Hughes Solicitors as winners of the Liverpool Chamber of Commerce Employer of the Year award for 2014!
Our very own Chantelle Owens, an apprentice in our Industrial Disease Team, also won the Excellence in Achievement award. What a fantastic evening for HH!

Christine Rowe also an apprentice at Hampson Hughes was nominated for Apprentice of the Year.

liverpool chamber