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Costs Department

Sharon Denby

Partner - Head of Costs

Sharon Denby

Partner - Head of Costs

Sharon has dedicated her career to helping individuals after serious injury. In particular she has specialised in brain injury and the devastating effect this can have on the individual and their loved ones.

She has brought many actions for clients against the Ministry of Justice and the Police. Her area of expertise is Employment liability. She was part of the legal team on the case of Ziemniak v ETPM Deep Sea Limited [2003] EWCA Civ 636 bringing a right of action under the Merchant Shipping (life Saving Appliances) Regulations 1980, SI 1980/538 for a brain injured client.

Sharon is a skilled negotiator and has a reputation for getting things done. As a partner at Express Solicitors, she has headed various Departments and supervised over 30 lawyers.

Sharon currently heads up the Costs and Budgeting Department at Express, where she manages a team of skilled lawyers in this complex area of law that is now a main feature of civil ligation. Sharon trains, mentors and develops her team to a very high standard in this growing area of legal practice. Sharon cites her keen eye for detail as one of her strengths as a solicitor and her motto is “always be prepare for the worst, and then nothing can take you by surprise in this unpredictable area of legal practice”.

In-keeping with the whole ethos of Express, Sharon takes training and development very seriously. When asked for her favourite quote, Sharon recalls the classic Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw who famously said “progress is impossible without change and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything”.

With 20 years experience in civil litigation, she is very well placed to lead the firm forwards to expand and grow their practice area in costs. She additionally consults with other partners on complex case decisions and has an active role in the management of the Firm

Email SharonLinkedIn

Sarah Fowden

Partner

Sarah Fowden

Partner

Sarah Fowden is a Partner and one of the supervisors within Costs department at Express Solicitors.

Her job involves drafting bills, drafting replies to ‘Points of Dispute’, and preparing legal bundles and court forms. Sarah has worked on the preparation of summary assessment schedules, breakdown of costs at case conclusion and negotiating the settlement of costs in litigated and non-litigated claimant personal injury cases.

Passionate about Personal Injury Law, Sarah believes this is crucial to achieving results. Indeed her favourite quotes comes the German theologian Albert Schweitzer who said ‘Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing you will be successful’. Sarah studied Law at Lancaster University before returning to Manchester to undertake her Qualified Lawyers Transfer Test.

Email SarahLinkedIn

Alex Summerscales

Partner

Alex Summerscales

Partner

Alex Summerscales is a Partner (Non-Lawyer) working in the Costs department at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in February 2014. He deals with a wide range of costs areas such as the drafting and variation of retainers, negotiations, budgeting, drafting of points of dispute and replies, skeleton arguments, appeals, advocacy at CCMCs, interlocutory applications, and detailed assessment and tackling complex technical challenges on retainers and bills.

Alex is a very organised individual, and cites this as one of his keys to success in costs. “I pride myself on meticulous attention to detail and an excellent understanding and interpretation of case law, the Civil Procedure Rules and Practice Directions,” says Alexander. “I believe in very careful and considered planning and preparation and keeping on top of your time, deadlines and documents.”

In the past Alex has worked on some extremely high profile cases. He assisted in the leading cases of Richards v Davis [2005] EWHC 90014 (Costs) (25 November 2005) and Oyston v The Royal Bank of Scotland Plc [2006] EWHC 90053 (Costs) (16 May 2006), and also acted in the multi-million dollar and multi-jurisdictional case of Sharman Networks Limited v Claria Corporation (Commercial Court) (2008) which took place across several US states, European countries and the High Court in London.

Prior to joining Express Solicitors, Alex gained over 10 years of experience in costs, including over 7 years at a leading international practice, bringing excellent perspective having acted on the side of claimants and defendants and within Solicitors Act 1974 assessments. He has furthered his knowledge of costs by attending many conferences, seminars and lectures on the subject throughout the UK and Europe in addition to drafting and delivering seminars both internally and externally.

Throughout the constantly changing legal landscape, Alex has developed an excellent understanding of the changes and impact of the Jackson reforms, both within the fundamental changes to the CPR and Practice Directions and the implementation of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012. In addition, Alex keeps abreast of the constant developments in costs law and practice, which have become all the more crucial in the days post Jackson.

Email AlexLinkedIn

Carly Schofield

Senior Associate Costs Lawyer

Carly Schofield

Senior Associate Costs Lawyer

Carly Schofield is a Senior Associate Costs Lawyer at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in October 2018.

When asked what she likes best about her role, Carly commented “I enjoy the diversity that cost law brings. I have worked on a wide range of cases, ranging from mesothelioma to clinical negligence to sexual abuse cases and gained a wide knowledge of all aspects of the law, given that costs are now an integral part of the civil litigation case from the outset.”

“I have mainly worked on catastrophic injury/clinical negligence cost cases from cradle to grave and am experienced at dealing with all aspects of cost budgeting from budget preparation to CCMC advocacy.”

“I genuinely want the best result possible for the fee earners and the firm, I think the burden is on me to ensure the costs recovered reflect the hard work done on the case.  I make a difference by always engaging a personable approach with Defendants.”

Carly has worked in costs for 10 years and is a qualified Costs Lawyer regulated by the Costs Lawyers Standards Board. A personal achievement for Carly was advocating in the Royal Courts of Justice on a high value/ high media profile case.

Email CarlyLinkedIn

Joe Bernhardt

Senior Costs Draftsman

Joe Bernhardt

Senior Costs Draftsman

Joe Bernhardt is a Senior Costs Draftsman at Express Solicitors, having joined Express Solicitors in June 2018.

Joe specialises in preparing and negotiating Costs Budgets, drafting Bills of Costs and preparing Replies to Points of Dispute on high value serious injury claims.

When asked what he likes best about his role, Joe commented “I am really passionate about what I do and try to always go that extra mile to obtain the best results for my client/the instructing Solicitor. I have an eye for detail and always look to address potential issues at an early stage whilst they are still minor issues”.

Joe went on to say “I have a keen interest and a passion in costs budgeting. I enjoy the challenge of estimating the future costs on a Precedent H which requires you to attempt to predict the future course that the case will take and the various costs that may arise as a result of this. This keeps me on my toes especially when it comes to high value complex cases with many disciplines of experts and many potential Witnesses.  What I really enjoy about this, is that every case is unique which means that you are constantly required to think out of the box and use your knowledge and experience in order to ensure that the cost budget prepared is of top quality. I also really enjoy negotiating with Defendant’s and feel a great amount of satisfaction when I have achieved a good result on settling a case.”

“My General achievements to date are gaining confidence and experience in drafting bills of costs, Costs Budgets and Replies to Points of Dispute on high value complex serious injury cases and adapting quickly to the many changes that have taken place to costs in the last five years.”

Email JoeLinkedIn

Philip Bradbury

Associate

Philip Bradbury

Associate

Philip Bradbury is a Associate in the Costs department at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in July 2019.

Phil highlights, that the variety of cases that he gets to deal with on a day to day basis is one of many factors that contribute to what he likes best about his role. Phil went on to say “Every case is bespoke, which requires you to think outside the box and use all your previous knowledge and experience, especially when predicting the future development of the case lifespan. I enjoy being able to sit down and plan how cases will come to fruition with clients / acting Solicitors.”

Phil specialises in Cost management, with experience within Commercial Litigation, Clinical negligence, High Value Catastrophic and Claimant Personal Injury.

Phil has over 12 years Costs Drafting experience, and comments how he is very organised and is always willing to go that extra mile for a client or instructing Solicitor. Phil is always keen to building excellent relationships and client management skills across a variety of different areas as well as being a team player within the Firm and Costs department.

Prior to joining Express Solicitors, Phil managed a team of up to 8 Fee Earners in a Manchester office which solely worked on Costs Budgets. And has also published a number of articles in a number of respected legal publications- from the Litigation Future to The Law Gazette.

Email PhilipLinkedIn

Hannah Buswell

Associate Costs Lawyer

Hannah Buswell

Associate Costs Lawyer

Hannah Buswell is a Associate Costs Lawyer in the Costs department, having joined Express Solicitors in January 2020. Hannah Specialises in drafting high value Bill of Costs and Costs Budgets. Hannah has a particular interest in Clinical Negligence matters having historically worked on multi-million-pound claims for birthing injuries, drawing Bill of Costs in excess of a million pounds, undertaking negotiations, preparing replies and attending a JSM to achieve settlement.

When asked what she likes best about her role, Hannah commented, “I like the variety that comes with a full costs case load, so that no two tasks are the same. I can either be heads down in a large Bill or Budget or getting to grips with technical disputes whilst preparing replies and undertaking negotiations. I like that Costs is evolving and changing as it keeps me on my toes to ensure I am on top of changes to legislation and rules.”

“My keen eye to detail and my experience of having dealt with a vast variety of cases from clinical negligence, dental negligence, commercial disputes, EL, PL, catastrophic injury etc. affords me a great understanding of the workings of litigation which helps me to work alongside the fee earners to map out the future of the case at the budgeting stage. It is a team effort and I like to think I make a difference in ensuring the budgeting process goes smoothly for the fee earners whilst ensuring no stone is left unturned.”

Hannah has worked in costs since 2010, she qualified as a Costs Lawyer in 2015 and gained accredited status through the CLSB in December 2019.

Email HannahLinkedIn

Deepa Patel

Assistant Solicitor

Deepa Patel

Assistant Solicitor

I am a qualified Solicitor in the Costs department.

It is my role to recover the costs of a claim. These are the costs that have been incurred in recovering compensation. In order to advise the file handler of the substantive matter, risk assessments are prepared, detailed file reviews are conducted and research of the Civil Procedure Rules and case law is undertaken to ensure the best outcome.

Another aspect of my role is to prepare a Budget. This document includes all the costs we estimate we will spend in order to conclude the claim. Upon a detailed review of the claim history it is my job to consider all the likely circumstances which may arise, discuss with the file handler and then estimate the time and disbursements which are likely to be incurred. In addition, we prepare Assumptions which explain the steps taken and costs incurred to date. The Assumptions go on to explain the steps still required along with the disbursements which are to be anticipated.

As part of my job role, I prepare Court documents and instructions to Counsel, I also attend Court hearings.

Email DeepaLinkedIn

Ujala Mahreen

Costs Draftsperson

Ujala Mahreen

Costs Draftsperson

Ujala Mahreen is a Costs Draftsperson in the Costs department at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in August 2019.

Ujala specialises in Drafting Formal Bills for Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence cases and occasionally assists with drafting without prejudice statements when needed.

When asked what she likes best about her role, Ujala mentioned “The opportunity to draft Bills for high value/complex injury cases because it is interesting to see how these claims have progressed from start to finish compared to the normal fast track cases.”

Ujala has over 6 years’ experience in drafting bills, and pays close attention to detail, Ujala went on to explain, “whilst drafting the bills if I spot any problems/inconsistencies I don’t hesitate to approach the fee earners and flag it up.”

Ujala is work driven but believes team morale is important too, she is always available for other team members if needed and enjoys working within the Costs department.

Having started with the firm in August 2019, Ujala’s biggest achievement was drafting a Clinical Negligence Bill which was over £800,000.00 and won the Winter Incentive for the best biller in the Costs department.

Email UjalaLinkedIn

Hambo Deuchar

Costs Draftsperson

Hambo Deuchar

Costs Draftsperson

Hambo Deuchar is a Costs Draftsperson having joined Express Solicitors in October 2017. Hambo helps to draft Statements of Costs at the end of the Litigation process.

When asked what Hambo likes best about her role, she commented “I like working in Costs, I enjoy the mathematical aspect of my job.  I deal with files at the end of the litigation process, this means I am able to see how the Law has been applied and how matters have been dealt with from the opening of the file right to its conclusion.”

“I deal with a variety of files from all departments within the firm, this ranging from EL, RTA, OL, PL and Clinical Negligence. This means I get to talk and to know people from all the various teams within the firm and they get to know me as well! I like that, I am continually provided with appropriate training in Costs, this helps me to progress in my career. I like the great team of people that I work with, they are approachable and always able to assist if needed this creates a friendly environment and makes my job easy and quite enjoyable.”

“I am good at Mathematics and enjoy dealing with figures. I am a hardworking individual and always show a strong commitment to my work, I have therefore been able to produce Costs statements at a fast pace, with accuracy. I am friendly and easy to get along with others, this helps to blend in with the rest of the Costs team and contribute to the approachable and fun spirit of the team.”

Email HamboLinkedIn

Hannah Razzak

Trainee Solicitor

Hannah Razzak

Trainee Solicitor

Hannah Razzak is a Costs Litigation Executive in the Costs department at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in August 2018.

Hannah specialises in incurred budget work and prepares bills alongside her current promotion where she now has her own case load.Hannah is keen on ensuring all tasks and work are completed timely and to a high standard.

Hannah commented, “I enjoy working with a lovely team of people, everyone is so welcoming and helpful. I also enjoy learning about new case law and working on new and challenging files. I also enjoy the continued progression; we are always providing training in new areas such as drafting Estimated Budgets and learning how to draft replies to points of dispute. We are always provided with opportunities to expand our knowledge in the costs team!”

Prior to joining Express Solicitors Hannah completed her LLB, LLM and LPC

Email HannahLinkedIn

Luke Rimmer

Trainee Costs Lawyer

Luke Rimmer

Trainee Costs Lawyer

Luke Rimmer is a Costs Litigation Executive at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in November 2018.

Luke has received training on budgets as well as Red Line Bills. His day to day tasks includes drafting incurred budgets, Red Line Bills for Detailed Assessment & working on his caseload.

When asked what Luke likes best about his role he commented, “Having a great team of people is a massive part of the job, they help keep you sane when busy! I enjoy learning about different case law and applying the same to current cases to get the best settlement for costs. However, one of my favourite things is the fact that each case is different and challenging.”

“I make a difference to the team by completing my tasks on time and helping others when urgent work comes in. I will go out of my way in order to achieve the best outcome on a case, whether that be my own or somebody else’s. I also like to think I put a smile on the people’s faces around me (whether that be laughing with me or at me).”

Luke previously worked at a law firm which specialised in Industrial Disease claims for over two years.  “This helped me gain a good knowledge of costs, which gave me a good opportunity to start working with Express and further my knowledge.”

Email LukeLinkedIn

Rebecca Curzon

Trainee Solicitor

Rebecca Curzon

Trainee Solicitor

Rebecca Curzon is a Cost Litigation Executive at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in July 2018. Rebecca’s role focuses on undertaking a lot of budget work, including preparing the incurred count and currently preparing more bills and handling her own cases, which mainly involve disbursement disputes.

When asked what she enjoys most about her role, Rebecca said it is the people. She explained that the costs department are very welcoming and are what makes working at Express Solicitors enjoyable. In Rebecca’s own words “they have made it a lovey place to work”. Rebecca is always getting involved with training new people that come into the Costs department and enjoys being included in all training whether it be on Budget, bills and or risk assessments.

Due to Rebecca’s continuous success and achievements, she has been promoted to Litigation Executive in the Costs department. In addition, Rebecca has recently graduated with a Law degree at the University of Liverpool.

Email RebeccaLinkedIn

Chloe Hodkinson

Costs Litigation Assistant

Chloe Hodkinson

Costs Litigation Assistant

Email ChloeLinkedIn

Tania Sindhu

Costs Litigation Assistant

Tania Sindhu

Costs Litigation Assistant

Email Tania

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Ella Ryan

Costs Litigation Assistant

Ella Ryan

Costs Litigation Assistant

Email EllaLinkedIn

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Billy Torbett

Costs Litigation Assistant

Billy Torbett

Costs Litigation Assistant

Email BillyLinkedIn

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Ursula Konarska

Costs Litigation Assistant

Ursula Konarska

Costs Litigation Assistant

Email UrsulaLinkedIn

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Stacy Coupes

PA to Sharon Denby

Stacy Coupes

PA to Sharon Denby

Email Stacy

Sharon Denby

Partner - Head of Costs

READ BIO

Sharon has dedicated her career to helping individuals after serious injury. In particular she has specialised in brain injury and the devastating effect this can have on the individual and their loved ones.

She has brought many actions for clients against the Ministry of Justice and the Police. Her area of expertise is Employment liability. She was part of the legal team on the case of Ziemniak v ETPM Deep Sea Limited [2003] EWCA Civ 636 bringing a right of action under the Merchant Shipping (life Saving Appliances) Regulations 1980, SI 1980/538 for a brain injured client.

Sharon is a skilled negotiator and has a reputation for getting things done. As a partner at Express Solicitors, she has headed various Departments and supervised over 30 lawyers.

Sharon currently heads up the Costs and Budgeting Department at Express, where she manages a team of skilled lawyers in this complex area of law that is now a main feature of civil ligation. Sharon trains, mentors and develops her team to a very high standard in this growing area of legal practice. Sharon cites her keen eye for detail as one of her strengths as a solicitor and her motto is “always be prepare for the worst, and then nothing can take you by surprise in this unpredictable area of legal practice”.

In-keeping with the whole ethos of Express, Sharon takes training and development very seriously. When asked for her favourite quote, Sharon recalls the classic Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw who famously said “progress is impossible without change and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything”.

With 20 years experience in civil litigation, she is very well placed to lead the firm forwards to expand and grow their practice area in costs. She additionally consults with other partners on complex case decisions and has an active role in the management of the Firm

Sarah Fowden

Partner

READ BIO

Sarah Fowden is a Partner and one of the supervisors within Costs department at Express Solicitors.

Her job involves drafting bills, drafting replies to ‘Points of Dispute’, and preparing legal bundles and court forms. Sarah has worked on the preparation of summary assessment schedules, breakdown of costs at case conclusion and negotiating the settlement of costs in litigated and non-litigated claimant personal injury cases.

Passionate about Personal Injury Law, Sarah believes this is crucial to achieving results. Indeed her favourite quotes comes the German theologian Albert Schweitzer who said ‘Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing you will be successful’. Sarah studied Law at Lancaster University before returning to Manchester to undertake her Qualified Lawyers Transfer Test.

Alex Summerscales

Partner

READ BIO

Alex Summerscales is a Partner (Non-Lawyer) working in the Costs department at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in February 2014. He deals with a wide range of costs areas such as the drafting and variation of retainers, negotiations, budgeting, drafting of points of dispute and replies, skeleton arguments, appeals, advocacy at CCMCs, interlocutory applications, and detailed assessment and tackling complex technical challenges on retainers and bills.

Alex is a very organised individual, and cites this as one of his keys to success in costs. “I pride myself on meticulous attention to detail and an excellent understanding and interpretation of case law, the Civil Procedure Rules and Practice Directions,” says Alexander. “I believe in very careful and considered planning and preparation and keeping on top of your time, deadlines and documents.”

In the past Alex has worked on some extremely high profile cases. He assisted in the leading cases of Richards v Davis [2005] EWHC 90014 (Costs) (25 November 2005) and Oyston v The Royal Bank of Scotland Plc [2006] EWHC 90053 (Costs) (16 May 2006), and also acted in the multi-million dollar and multi-jurisdictional case of Sharman Networks Limited v Claria Corporation (Commercial Court) (2008) which took place across several US states, European countries and the High Court in London.

Prior to joining Express Solicitors, Alex gained over 10 years of experience in costs, including over 7 years at a leading international practice, bringing excellent perspective having acted on the side of claimants and defendants and within Solicitors Act 1974 assessments. He has furthered his knowledge of costs by attending many conferences, seminars and lectures on the subject throughout the UK and Europe in addition to drafting and delivering seminars both internally and externally.

Throughout the constantly changing legal landscape, Alex has developed an excellent understanding of the changes and impact of the Jackson reforms, both within the fundamental changes to the CPR and Practice Directions and the implementation of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012. In addition, Alex keeps abreast of the constant developments in costs law and practice, which have become all the more crucial in the days post Jackson.

Carly Schofield

Senior Associate Costs Lawyer

READ BIO

Carly Schofield is a Senior Associate Costs Lawyer at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in October 2018.

When asked what she likes best about her role, Carly commented “I enjoy the diversity that cost law brings. I have worked on a wide range of cases, ranging from mesothelioma to clinical negligence to sexual abuse cases and gained a wide knowledge of all aspects of the law, given that costs are now an integral part of the civil litigation case from the outset.”

“I have mainly worked on catastrophic injury/clinical negligence cost cases from cradle to grave and am experienced at dealing with all aspects of cost budgeting from budget preparation to CCMC advocacy.”

“I genuinely want the best result possible for the fee earners and the firm, I think the burden is on me to ensure the costs recovered reflect the hard work done on the case.  I make a difference by always engaging a personable approach with Defendants.”

Carly has worked in costs for 10 years and is a qualified Costs Lawyer regulated by the Costs Lawyers Standards Board. A personal achievement for Carly was advocating in the Royal Courts of Justice on a high value/ high media profile case.

Joe Bernhardt

Senior Costs Draftsman

READ BIO

Joe Bernhardt is a Senior Costs Draftsman at Express Solicitors, having joined Express Solicitors in June 2018.

Joe specialises in preparing and negotiating Costs Budgets, drafting Bills of Costs and preparing Replies to Points of Dispute on high value serious injury claims.

When asked what he likes best about his role, Joe commented “I am really passionate about what I do and try to always go that extra mile to obtain the best results for my client/the instructing Solicitor. I have an eye for detail and always look to address potential issues at an early stage whilst they are still minor issues”.

Joe went on to say “I have a keen interest and a passion in costs budgeting. I enjoy the challenge of estimating the future costs on a Precedent H which requires you to attempt to predict the future course that the case will take and the various costs that may arise as a result of this. This keeps me on my toes especially when it comes to high value complex cases with many disciplines of experts and many potential Witnesses.  What I really enjoy about this, is that every case is unique which means that you are constantly required to think out of the box and use your knowledge and experience in order to ensure that the cost budget prepared is of top quality. I also really enjoy negotiating with Defendant’s and feel a great amount of satisfaction when I have achieved a good result on settling a case.”

“My General achievements to date are gaining confidence and experience in drafting bills of costs, Costs Budgets and Replies to Points of Dispute on high value complex serious injury cases and adapting quickly to the many changes that have taken place to costs in the last five years.”

Philip Bradbury

Associate

READ BIO

Philip Bradbury is a Associate in the Costs department at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in July 2019.

Phil highlights, that the variety of cases that he gets to deal with on a day to day basis is one of many factors that contribute to what he likes best about his role. Phil went on to say “Every case is bespoke, which requires you to think outside the box and use all your previous knowledge and experience, especially when predicting the future development of the case lifespan. I enjoy being able to sit down and plan how cases will come to fruition with clients / acting Solicitors.”

Phil specialises in Cost management, with experience within Commercial Litigation, Clinical negligence, High Value Catastrophic and Claimant Personal Injury.

Phil has over 12 years Costs Drafting experience, and comments how he is very organised and is always willing to go that extra mile for a client or instructing Solicitor. Phil is always keen to building excellent relationships and client management skills across a variety of different areas as well as being a team player within the Firm and Costs department.

Prior to joining Express Solicitors, Phil managed a team of up to 8 Fee Earners in a Manchester office which solely worked on Costs Budgets. And has also published a number of articles in a number of respected legal publications- from the Litigation Future to The Law Gazette.

Hannah Buswell

Associate Costs Lawyer

READ BIO

Hannah Buswell is a Associate Costs Lawyer in the Costs department, having joined Express Solicitors in January 2020. Hannah Specialises in drafting high value Bill of Costs and Costs Budgets. Hannah has a particular interest in Clinical Negligence matters having historically worked on multi-million-pound claims for birthing injuries, drawing Bill of Costs in excess of a million pounds, undertaking negotiations, preparing replies and attending a JSM to achieve settlement.

When asked what she likes best about her role, Hannah commented, “I like the variety that comes with a full costs case load, so that no two tasks are the same. I can either be heads down in a large Bill or Budget or getting to grips with technical disputes whilst preparing replies and undertaking negotiations. I like that Costs is evolving and changing as it keeps me on my toes to ensure I am on top of changes to legislation and rules.”

“My keen eye to detail and my experience of having dealt with a vast variety of cases from clinical negligence, dental negligence, commercial disputes, EL, PL, catastrophic injury etc. affords me a great understanding of the workings of litigation which helps me to work alongside the fee earners to map out the future of the case at the budgeting stage. It is a team effort and I like to think I make a difference in ensuring the budgeting process goes smoothly for the fee earners whilst ensuring no stone is left unturned.”

Hannah has worked in costs since 2010, she qualified as a Costs Lawyer in 2015 and gained accredited status through the CLSB in December 2019.

Deepa Patel

Assistant Solicitor

READ BIO

I am a qualified Solicitor in the Costs department.

It is my role to recover the costs of a claim. These are the costs that have been incurred in recovering compensation. In order to advise the file handler of the substantive matter, risk assessments are prepared, detailed file reviews are conducted and research of the Civil Procedure Rules and case law is undertaken to ensure the best outcome.

Another aspect of my role is to prepare a Budget. This document includes all the costs we estimate we will spend in order to conclude the claim. Upon a detailed review of the claim history it is my job to consider all the likely circumstances which may arise, discuss with the file handler and then estimate the time and disbursements which are likely to be incurred. In addition, we prepare Assumptions which explain the steps taken and costs incurred to date. The Assumptions go on to explain the steps still required along with the disbursements which are to be anticipated.

As part of my job role, I prepare Court documents and instructions to Counsel, I also attend Court hearings.

Ujala Mahreen

Costs Draftsperson

READ BIO

Ujala Mahreen is a Costs Draftsperson in the Costs department at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in August 2019.

Ujala specialises in Drafting Formal Bills for Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence cases and occasionally assists with drafting without prejudice statements when needed.

When asked what she likes best about her role, Ujala mentioned “The opportunity to draft Bills for high value/complex injury cases because it is interesting to see how these claims have progressed from start to finish compared to the normal fast track cases.”

Ujala has over 6 years’ experience in drafting bills, and pays close attention to detail, Ujala went on to explain, “whilst drafting the bills if I spot any problems/inconsistencies I don’t hesitate to approach the fee earners and flag it up.”

Ujala is work driven but believes team morale is important too, she is always available for other team members if needed and enjoys working within the Costs department.

Having started with the firm in August 2019, Ujala’s biggest achievement was drafting a Clinical Negligence Bill which was over £800,000.00 and won the Winter Incentive for the best biller in the Costs department.

Hambo Deuchar

Costs Draftsperson

READ BIO

Hambo Deuchar is a Costs Draftsperson having joined Express Solicitors in October 2017. Hambo helps to draft Statements of Costs at the end of the Litigation process.

When asked what Hambo likes best about her role, she commented “I like working in Costs, I enjoy the mathematical aspect of my job.  I deal with files at the end of the litigation process, this means I am able to see how the Law has been applied and how matters have been dealt with from the opening of the file right to its conclusion.”

“I deal with a variety of files from all departments within the firm, this ranging from EL, RTA, OL, PL and Clinical Negligence. This means I get to talk and to know people from all the various teams within the firm and they get to know me as well! I like that, I am continually provided with appropriate training in Costs, this helps me to progress in my career. I like the great team of people that I work with, they are approachable and always able to assist if needed this creates a friendly environment and makes my job easy and quite enjoyable.”

“I am good at Mathematics and enjoy dealing with figures. I am a hardworking individual and always show a strong commitment to my work, I have therefore been able to produce Costs statements at a fast pace, with accuracy. I am friendly and easy to get along with others, this helps to blend in with the rest of the Costs team and contribute to the approachable and fun spirit of the team.”

Hannah Razzak

Trainee Solicitor

READ BIO

Hannah Razzak is a Costs Litigation Executive in the Costs department at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in August 2018.

Hannah specialises in incurred budget work and prepares bills alongside her current promotion where she now has her own case load.Hannah is keen on ensuring all tasks and work are completed timely and to a high standard.

Hannah commented, “I enjoy working with a lovely team of people, everyone is so welcoming and helpful. I also enjoy learning about new case law and working on new and challenging files. I also enjoy the continued progression; we are always providing training in new areas such as drafting Estimated Budgets and learning how to draft replies to points of dispute. We are always provided with opportunities to expand our knowledge in the costs team!”

Prior to joining Express Solicitors Hannah completed her LLB, LLM and LPC

Luke Rimmer

Trainee Costs Lawyer

READ BIO

Luke Rimmer is a Costs Litigation Executive at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in November 2018.

Luke has received training on budgets as well as Red Line Bills. His day to day tasks includes drafting incurred budgets, Red Line Bills for Detailed Assessment & working on his caseload.

When asked what Luke likes best about his role he commented, “Having a great team of people is a massive part of the job, they help keep you sane when busy! I enjoy learning about different case law and applying the same to current cases to get the best settlement for costs. However, one of my favourite things is the fact that each case is different and challenging.”

“I make a difference to the team by completing my tasks on time and helping others when urgent work comes in. I will go out of my way in order to achieve the best outcome on a case, whether that be my own or somebody else’s. I also like to think I put a smile on the people’s faces around me (whether that be laughing with me or at me).”

Luke previously worked at a law firm which specialised in Industrial Disease claims for over two years.  “This helped me gain a good knowledge of costs, which gave me a good opportunity to start working with Express and further my knowledge.”

Rebecca Curzon

Trainee Solicitor

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Rebecca Curzon is a Cost Litigation Executive at Express Solicitors, having joined the firm in July 2018. Rebecca’s role focuses on undertaking a lot of budget work, including preparing the incurred count and currently preparing more bills and handling her own cases, which mainly involve disbursement disputes.

When asked what she enjoys most about her role, Rebecca said it is the people. She explained that the costs department are very welcoming and are what makes working at Express Solicitors enjoyable. In Rebecca’s own words “they have made it a lovey place to work”. Rebecca is always getting involved with training new people that come into the Costs department and enjoys being included in all training whether it be on Budget, bills and or risk assessments.

Due to Rebecca’s continuous success and achievements, she has been promoted to Litigation Executive in the Costs department. In addition, Rebecca has recently graduated with a Law degree at the University of Liverpool.

Chloe Hodkinson

Costs Litigation Assistant

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Tania Sindhu

Costs Litigation Assistant

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Ella Ryan

Costs Litigation Assistant

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Billy Torbett

Costs Litigation Assistant

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Ursula Konarska

Costs Litigation Assistant

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Stacy Coupes

PA to Sharon Denby

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