Sarah Gardner is a senior lawyer based at Thompsons Solicitors’ National Litigation Unit in Stoke specialising in foreign jurisdiction cases and personal injury claims with a foreign element.
As a highly experienced solicitor, Sarah focuses on high value claims, but also supervises colleagues. She has extensive knowledge of dealing with multiple defendant claims, involving the law of different countries.
Sarah has a high reputation for her knowledge of shipping law and of the specialist court procedures involved.
Sarah prides herself on her attention to detail when dealing with clients and ensures that she explains the law in simple English, keeping clients up to date at all times with the development of their case.
Sarah has extensive links with lawyers and agents all over the world and specialist barristers. She ensures that her clients are assessed by the most appropriate expert for their particular injury in order to recover as much compensation as possible.
Sarah has dealt with a wide range of compensation claims:
- Package travel claims - such as slips and trips, group and individual action, food poisoning cases and also skiing accidents. Sarah has been involved in pursuing the group action claims relating to the 2015 Tunisia terror attacks under the regulations relating to package travel claims
- Montreal Convention Claims – any accident in the process of embarking, disembarking or during an international flight as a passenger
- Athens Convention Claims – any accident in the process of embarking, disembarking or during international travel by sea as a passenger. This includes slips and trips on cruise liners and food poisoning cases. Sarah has run a group action for legionnaires’ disease contracted through faulty air conditioning
- Accidents at work whilst at sea or at dock - accidents at work out at sea on oil rigs, which require specialist knowledge of the applicable regulations
- Road traffic accidents in this country with a foreign defendant as well as road accidents abroad
- Accidents at work abroad -Sarah has helped claimants who were injured abroad whilst building film production sets as well as other types of construction work abroad
- Product liability cases involving a foreign manufacturer.
Sarah has worked for Thompsons Solicitors since she qualified in 2008. She believes that the constant legal training and updates the firm provides is excellent and it means that clients get highly trained staff who are legally up to date. “I enjoy working for Thompsons as to me they are not just a law firm, but a way of thinking and acting politically.” Sarah is a Labour party member and a member of a trade union and she enjoys attending and speaking at labour movement events which she believes makes the work she does more meaningful. “I enjoy only working for injured people and those that need help the most,” she says.
Outside work Sarah has a Wolves season ticket. Sarah enjoys yoga, pilates and long country walks. She also has a passion for music and enjoys attending gigs and festivals.
Sarah’s case experience
Accident at work client: One of Sarah’s clients, who was working as a stage hand in Hungary on the set of the science fiction thriller World War Z, sustained a complex hip injury after falling through a hole. Liability was admitted by the film production company and compensation was settled at £60,000.
Another of Sarah’s clients broke her foot while on holiday in Mexico. She had wiped her feet on a mat at the entrance to a bar but suddenly slipped and fell on the floor. Unbeknown to her the floor was wet. It was only after the accident that management placed a sign on the floor warning guests that the floor was slippery. Sarah secured damages of £7,500 for her client.
Accident at work client: A 68-year-old storage fitter who slipped in a pool of water while working on a site in Holland injuring his left shoulder, was forced to stop working ahead of his retirement. Poor lighting in the building meant the Unite union member was unable to see the water in order to avoid it.
Following X-rays at a local hospital, he was flown back to the UK where he needed further treatment. A Unite the Union spokesperson said: “Workplace injuries that are sustained abroad create an extra challenge for legal staff, as the laws and regulations around health and safety can and do differ between countries.
“Unite and Thompsons worked tirelessly to provide specialist foreign accident advice to our member. It was important the man’s employer was held accountable for its errors, which caused him to suffer the injury in the first place.”
Sarah is a member of the Pan European Organisation of Personal Injury Lawyers, the North West Travel Law forum and the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL).
Referring to the last item in the case experience section above, the client concerned said: “The legal side of making a claim for an injury abroad was alien to me, but this was where Unite Legal Services and Thompsons came to my aid. They not only provided legal support but also kept me in the loop with the whole procedure, and I was able to receive 100 per cent of the compensation for my injuries.”
In another case the client, who received £45,000 in compensation, said:
“I wish to thank you for all the hard work and long hours you have put in to my case and securing the compensation for my family and myself.
My wife's best friend is a solicitor so I am aware of the constant workload your company expects you to get through every day of each week, cannot be easy. What I am trying to say is sorry for being so demanding of you, when time is something you have not got.”
Another client said: “My claim was a lengthy one and at times very frustrating, I hope my solicitor who dealt with my case won't mind me saying, was superb, professional and friendly throughout the whole time, every time areas needed addressing Sarah Gardner was amazing, nothing was too much trouble and a fantastic professional person too, cannot express my gratitude for the way the case was handled by Sarah and her team, A massive thank you to Sarah and Thompsons.”
Another client: “I am a lifetime member of UNISON. When I sustained a traumatic injury, I was referred to Thompsons my union’s lawyers. I have had a very professional team who dealt with my PI Cases. I am pleased at the way every one of them has provided the service. A big thank you goes to all and to Unison. Thank you for a valuable service.”