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Top honours for Challinors’ legal teams and Ghulam

New role for historic name

Ladywood -based health insurer BHSF has been associated with the welfare of Midlands workers for over 135 years, reinventing itself many times including its recent development into employee benefits. This reinvention is again underway, driven by the needs of BHSF’s 2800 client businesses. As precious NHS resources

come under pressure and employees feel the current economic pain, employers are seeking to provide support and offer practical assistance in keeping vital employees healthy and productive. In meeting these challenges three BHSF initiatives are being deployed, bringing together occupational health, health cash plans and employee assistance programmes (EAPs) to facilitate high quality interventions for those who need help.

‘The occupational health menu allows employers to get professional guidance’

“It works”, says Brian Hall, Sales and Marketing Director at BHSF. “The occupational health menu allows employers to get professional guidance on helping employees, whilst the health cash plan can help with optical and dental costs and health managements such as osteopathy or physiotherapy. Even consultants’ fees and diagnostic tests can be claimed for. Adding in the EAP brings counselling for those suffering stress or, in the current climate, worrying about debt issues; its practical legal advice and debt guidance means it is far more than a sympathetic ear.” This combined approach is proving particularly popular with SMEs who often lack internal occupational health resources and extensive HR support.

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rime, fraud, family and clinical negligence teams and lawyers at Midlands

law firm Challinors, have scored highly in the latest Chambers & Partners 2012 UK Directory.

Challinors 30-strong business and serious crime team, which has offices in the West and East Midlands, has been awarded Band 1, Chambers’ highest ranking, for the third consecutive year. According to Chambers, “market sources agree that serious crime is one of the firm’s key strengths”, and that “the teams’ peers are happy to refer it high-level work”. Team head and partner Ghulam Sohail is ranked as a band 1 crime lawyer by Chambers in the West Midlands region, as well as band 4 for fraud defence work in the national rankings, making him the highest ranking West Midlands lawyer in defence work, according to the 2012 Directory. Based in Challinors’ West Bromwich office, Chambers states that Ghulam “wins considerable acclaim for being conscientious and very reassuring with clients”. Partner and head of Challinors clinical negligence

Ghulam Sohail, Challinors

‘It is especially rewarding that our growing crime team is again awarded the highest rankings’

Challinors business and fraud defence team are also ranked in the national rankings in band 4 this year and is recognised for its ‘growing number of national instructions’. Again headed by Ghulam Sohail at the West Bromwich office, the team offers advice and representation to corporations and private individuals; Chambers describes it as ‘ambitious, responsive and forward-thinking’. For the specialist fraud work, Ghulam is described as being ‘affable, open and honest in his appraisal of his client’s position’. Challinors is also ranked Band 5 within the dispute resolution category. Led by partner Peter Lowe, the team boasts ‘excellent regional coverage and handles a variety of commercial and corporate disputes, professional negligence cases, and is ably supported by the strong fraud and asset recovery department’.

Commenting on the latest, 2012 edition of Chambers

team Richard Bannister is also ranked as a band 1 lawyer by Chambers. The directory describes him as being “highly regarded in the market, popular with clients” and for coming up “with good practical solutions to difficult problems”. The clinical negligence team, placed band 2, effectively handles a wide range of clinical negligence cases, with clients impressed with the service, and that the firm is “patient, interactive and manages cases exceptionally well”.

and Partners and the rankings for the firm, Challinors’ Ghulam Sohail, partner, said: “Once again Chambers has recognised Challinors’ exceptional service, expertise and success in a number of specialist legal areas. Such recognition serves to underline the continual high level of service and specialism our teams have consistently delivered across the full spectrum of corporate, and private client legal services. This year, it is especially rewarding that our growing crime team is again awarded the highest rankings and recognised as a key strength for the firm.” Challinors has offices in Birmingham, West Bromwich, Wolverhampton, Halesowen and Nottingham.

Experts clean up Vax IP case

A firm of Birmingham intellectual property specialists which advised Vax in its landmark legal victory over rival Dyson says the decision is a “shot in the arm for innovation”. Forresters, in conjunction with EMW solicitors, advised Vax – which has been based in the West Midlands since it was founded in 1979 – in a legal wrangle brought by James Dyson over the issue of a registered design. Dyson had gone to the court of appeal after a judge had ruled last year that Vax’s Mach Zen vacuum cleaner was not close to his DC02 model. The judgement confirmed that Vax had not copied Dyson’s design. Graham Dodd, the senior

associate responsible for the case at Forresters, said Vax had reason to be very proud that they had stuck to their principles.

42 CHAMBERLINK DECEMBER/JANUARY 2011/12 “In the end, this came down to

an issue of pure design, rather than the principles of design,” said Mr Dodd. “This is a real shot in the arm for UK design and innovation, given that nearly all of Vax’s R&D is done in this country. What we were able to do was offer clear, sensible and practical advice in relation to the design which, at all stages, the judges involved agreed with. “The judges were of the opinion, as clearly were we, that these were very different designs which created a different overall impression.

Indeed, the lead judge went so far as to highlight a number of important distinguishing features, concluding that Vax’s ‘rugged, angular and industrial’ machine was, overall, quite different to the DC02.”

Graham Dodd, senior associate at Forresters

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