Why I welcome a review of the military justice system

An independent review of the British military justice system, including the controversial use of majority verdicts in court martials, is to be carried out, the Government has announced. The aim of the review is to ensure the system is as “effective as it can be for the 21st century”. It follows calls for the court…

Remembering our fallen heroes

With Remembrance Day fast approaching, Hilary Meredith Solicitors is proud to support the Royal British Legion as sponsors of this year’s Poppy Ball in London.  The Ball takes place on 2 November, which is also London Poppy Day. Remembrance Day poppies are also going on sale across Britain this week and staff from Hilary Meredith…

Divorce rate rises for all types of marriage

The rate of divorce has increased for the first time in five years, figures from the Office for National Statistics have revealed. There were 106,959 divorces last year, a rise of 5.8 per cent compared with the previous year. There were large falls in the rate of divorce in the preceding two years, including a…

Army sent soldier back to frontline in Afghanistan with PTSD

There was a disturbing story in the Sunday Mirror at the weekend about a soldier who was sent back to the frontline in Afghanistan when suffering from PTSD. Sean Jones, who was awarded the military cross, says he was diagnosed by a military doctor 8 years ago – but never told.  He was sent back…

NHS waits worsen across UK

The performance of hospitals across the UK has slumped with targets for cancer, A&E and planned operations now being missed across the board, according to research by the BBC. Nationally England, Wales and Northern Ireland have not hit one of their three targets for 18 months.  Only Scotland has had any success in the last…

Why I support mental health training for our Armed Forces

I fully support plans to provide the Armed Forces and their families with mental health training to deal with military life under an initiative between the Ministry of Defence and the young Royals. The venture will see the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry expand their campaigning against the stigma of mental illness…

Personal Injury Awards 2017 – delighted to be shortlisted

I am delighted to be shortlisted for Outstanding Achievement at the Eclipse Proclaim Personal Injury Awards 2017. Now in their tenth anniversary year, the Personal Injury Awards provide a unique opportunity to highlight and celebrate individuals and organisations across the personal injury claims sector. Congratulations to everyone shortlisted and involved! Hilary Meredith

Delighted to be speaking at Veterans’ Wellbeing conference

I am delighted to be speaking at a conference on the health and wellbeing of military veterans next month. Hosted by the University of Chester’s Westminster Centre for Research and Innovation in Veterans’ Wellbeing, the event will take place on Thursday, October 5 in Churchill House at the university’s Queen’s Park campus. The keynote presenter…

Zebra earn their stripes!

Thanks and congratulations to Zoe Holland and her team at ZebraLC. ZebraLC were brought in at our invitation to review existing technical file audit procedures and peer review systems within clinical negligence, private client and personal injury in order to maintain them as “fit for purpose” in a changing legal landscape. Although Hilary Meredith Solicitors…

Broughton House veterans’ care village gets the go ahead

I am delighted that plans for a £12.5m veterans’ care village at Broughton House in Salford have been approved. Broughton House is our charity of the year and our social committee has been busy on a range of fundraising initiatives for the veterans’ care village. As the only home for ex-servicemen and women in the…

Lawyer calls on government to stop plotting and reveal its intentions

Plans to remove army service personnel’s right to pursue cases through the court are still alive, the government has confirmed. The plans, which effectively extend the principle of combat immunity and prevent claims coming before the court, were unveiled last December but a response to the MoD consultation has yet to materialise. There had been…

British Army veterans – another witch hunt with a depressingly familiar ring to it

Thousands of elderly British Army veterans are facing a new ‘witch-hunt’ over the deaths of suspected IRA terrorists more than 40 years ago, The Mail on Sunday has reported. In the largest ever trawl for eyewitnesses, ex-troops have been asked to provide legal statements about fatal shootings in Northern Ireland ahead of new inquests. The…

Recruitment crisis grips the military – why we shouldn’t be surprised

It is being reported today that an Army training course had 82 of its 96 places left unfilled as a recruitment crisis grips the military. Just 14 would-be troops signed up for the common infantry course at Catterick, the Army’s biggest base. There are a number of reasons for this sorry state of affairs. Take,…

Big Ben may not be silent after all

MPs have called for a review into whether Big Ben should remain silent for four years as it is refurbished. The giant bell at the centre of the Elizabeth Tower’s Great Clock was due to cease ringing next Monday to allow work to take place. But officials are now being asked to look at the…

MoD – why a complete overhaul is needed

When Sky News’ Alistair Bunkall posted an opinion piece online in late July chastising the leadership of the Armed Forces and MoD for ducking serious media scrutiny in favour of arranged appearances, it chimed with the impressions of a general disengagement in the vital debates around the future of the UK’s defence and security. Further…

Army must honour the Military Covenant – today’s Sunday Mirror

Commenting in today’s Sunday Mirror, Hilary Meredith has called for an urgent review of the treatment of ex-soldiers following the shocking revelations of decorated bomb hero, Wayne Owens. Major Wayne Owens was honoured three times by the Queen, saved countless lives and defused nearly 1000 bombs in Afghanistan. Yet his 27-year decorated career ended with…

Soldier’s battle over aftercare concerns

A paratrooper injured during a tour of Afghanistan more than a decade ago has been forced to seek legal advice over his aftercare needs. Lance bombardier Ben Parkinson suffered a severe brain injury and lost both his legs after a Land Rover he was travelling in was struck by an anti-tank mine in the North…

Suicide Crisis and why families need representation at Inquests

There is an excellent blog by Joy Hibbins, founder and director of Suicide Crisis, a charity which runs a Suicide Crisis Centre in Cheltenham, UK in today’s Huffpost. Joy explains why bereaved families need legal support at Inquests and describes how unrepresented families sometimes describe feeling that this is a “David and Goliath” situation. I…

Improving mental health and wellbeing in the Armed Forces

In a welcome development Tobias Ellwood, Minister for Defence People and Veterans, has launched a new initiative to improve the mental health and wellbeing of the Armed Forces, their families, veterans, and Defence civilians. While rates of mental disorder are slightly lower in the Armed Forces (3.2%) than in the general population (3.5%), the challenge…