Simpson Millar Lawyer First With Disease And Asbestos Accreditation In Wales

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The Law Of... earning prestigous accreditations

Phillip Gower from Simpson Millar has become the first APIL accredited occupational and asbestos disease lawyer in Wales.

Phillip Gower from Simpson Millar has become the first APIL accredited occupational and asbestos disease lawyer in Wales

He boasts more than a decade with the firm and today heads up Simpson Millar’s Cardiff office. But it is his vast experience in handling complex disease claims that has earned him the prestigious accreditations, as the first and so far only solicitor in Wales.

The APIL accreditation is open to senior litigators with more than 10 years experience in their fields. It is awarded following a rigorous application process during which the applicant’s portfolio of work is scrutinised, and references are sought from leaders in the field.

Phillip says: "Of course I am honoured to be the first solicitor in Wales to receive these accreditations, but I hope many of my colleagues will follow suit. It is absolutely vital that people who are suffering from these most ruthless diseases are given the best legal advice possible, during what is sadly often a very short period of lifetime remaining. Although no amount of money can buy you time, I frequently see the difference proper compensation can make to victims and their families, if secured in time."

Occupational disease is a highly specialist area of law with cases made extra complicated by having often very long latency periods from when the damage was done to when symptoms start to occur.

"Cases involving sufferers of mesothelioma, a brutal and deadly form of asbestos-related cancer, command the highest level of urgency and dedication. It is crucial that solicitors who are asked to advise in this area know exactly what to do, where to look for evidence and how to seek a swift conclusion – time is a luxury we don’t have in these cases. It’s a harsh reality and one which deserves the best in the field, and this is where the APIL accreditation will prove valuable."

"My job isn’t just about winning cases, but about giving everyone’s claim a fair assessment. It takes experience and expertise to identify cases that cannot succeed early on; sometimes that is just as important as being a good litigator in court."

Phillip has also been appointed an assessor for fellow solicitors seeking the occupational disease and asbestos accreditations.

He says: "I hope I won’t be the only lawyer with these accreditations for long. The region boasts some of the best in this area of law and I want to encourage them to apply."

Phillip doesn’t just advise people locally; he regularly represents clients that were exposed to asbestos while living and working in the region but who now live as far away as South Africa, America and Australia.

The UK’s most compressive guide to solicitors, the Legal 500, describes Phillip as having "vast experience, exercises sound judgement, and has an easy manner with his clients." During his APIL assessment, expert references praised his ability to risk assess and handle cases involving multiple defandents, and managing group litigation.

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