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Patrick McGuire is a Partner at Thompsons Solicitors. He has worked exclusively in the field of personal injury and health and safety law since his legal career began and is therefore recognised as an expert in both areas.
Patrick's dedication to the rights of victims of accident and disease and to workers' rights is beyond question. Patrick's professional goal is to dispel the myth of the compensation culture, which serves the insurance industry and encourages employers to ignore their duties to health and safety. He wishes to create instead a safety culture, wherein employees can attend their work safe in the knowledge that they will return home to their loved ones in the same physical and mental state of health each night.
Patrick has used test cases and political campaigning to achieve these aims. Patrick has represented victims in many lead cases over the years, with far reaching implications for the country's health and safety environment and workers' rights.
In Patrick Davidson ~v~ Lothian & Borders Fire Brigade, the Scottish Appeal Court (the Inner House of the Court of Session) established that, despite the need to ensure that fire-fighters are properly and fully trained, fire-fighters still have the same rights under the health and safety legislation as any other employee. Accordingly, the fire brigades must ensure their health and safety in the same way as any other employer.
In the cases of Clement ~v~ Scottish Ambulance Service and Skinner ~v~ Scottish Ambulance Service, Patrick established that use of traditional needles by branches of the NHS can be considered a breach of the country's health and safety legislation. In light of these appeal cases, the Health Minister at the Scottish Parliament, Andy Kerr, has announced a review of the use of needles across the entire NHS.
On the campaigning front, Patrick has worked closely with many of the country's leading trade unions in various political campaigns over the years. Most recently he has been actively involved in the campaign for a review of the country's civil justice system. He has also been a key adviser to the STUC and the country's trade unions in relation to the very important issue of corporate homicide. In recognition of that fact, Patrick was appointed as the STUC's legal adviser to the panel of experts set up by the Justice Minister, Cathy Jamieson, to consider the issue of corporate killing in Scotland.
Patrick is a leading expert in the field of Public Inquiries. Since the sweeping changes to the Inquiries procedures introduced in the Inquiries Act 2005 there have been only four Public Inquiries held in Scotland. Patrick has served as Recognised Legal Representative in three of those Public Inquiries: the ICL / Stockline Public Inquiry; the Vale of Leven Hospital Public Inquiry (C-difficile; and the Penrose Inquiry (infected blood products causing Hepatitis C and HIV). In relation to all three Inquiries Patrick was instrumental in working with victims groups to campaign and lobby for the announcement of the Public Inquiry. Patrick serves on the Law Society of Scotland’s Access to Justice Committee.
Patrick also recognises that to his clients, their claim for justice and redress is often one of the most important issues in their lives, as the claim progresses. Patrick is therefore 100% committed to ensuring that his clients receive a 100% dedicated service, that puts them at the centre of the case and always fights to ensure that they receive the full compensation to which they are entitled as just recompense for their injuries.
For his individual clients, Patrick aims to ensure that they receive a dedicated, professional and personal service.