Jonathan Wheeler

Jonathan was formerly head of both the personal injury and child abuse teams at Bolt Burdon Kemp, and has been a partner with the firm since 2003.

Chambers & Partners (2016) writes: “Jonathan Wheeler is picked out by commentators for his “enthusiasm and verve” and is praised for his “huge knowledge of personal injury.” His practice centres around representing victims of child sex abuse.

In 2006 Jonathan was named one of the ‘Hot 100’ lawyers of the year by The Lawyer magazine, recognising his campaigning work for survivors of child abuse, work which continues today. He is responsible for risk assessing all the personal injury and abuse claims handled by the firm.

In addition to his work at BBK, Jonathan is committed to the influential lobbying organisation the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL). Having held the post of co-ordinator of APIL’s Child Abuse Special Interest Group for 2 years, he has been a member of their national executive since 2008, and became a Fellow of the organisation in 2009. He was elected and served as APIL’s President in 2015-2016. Jonathan is also a member of FOCIS, the Forum of Complex Injury Solicitors, and the Human Rights Lawyers Association, He sits on the editorial board of the Journal of Personal Injury Law, and is a founder member of the Law Society’s LGBT Division. He trains other lawyers, both in-house and externally, and is regularly asked to provide comment on topical issues for the national media. In 2014/15 he accepted a consultancy role with the BBC, advising on story-lines for a well known TV soap.

Reported cases

Include;

Fashade v North Middlesex Hospital NHS Trust [2001] 5 CL 203 – at the time, the highest damages award for a nurse who developed asthma through exposure to the chemical glutaraldehyde (High Court, London)

Y v Wandsworth London Borough Council [2006] 1 WLR 2320 – established that a local authority is vicariously liable for the actions of one of its teachers abusing a child even where the abuse occurred off school premises (Court of Appeal).

A v Hoare & related appeals [2008] 1 AC 844 – landmark case which extended the time periods for bringing child abuse claims (House of Lords).

Pierce v Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council [2009] 1 FLR 1189 – first case where damages were awarded for a failure to retain a child in care by a local authority (Court of Appeal).

BJM v Eyre & others [2010] All ER (D) 139 (Nov) – substantial damages awarded in case where child abducted and sold into prostitution (High Court, Leeds).

  • "I really do appreciate all the time and work that you put in; the fact that someone 'outside' believed in what I was saying was so important and has helped immensely with coming to terms with my past and setting about my present and future. The financial settlement is obviously helpful; similarly, although it cannot undo the wrongs committed, it goes some way to helping me get back onto my intended path."

    Ian Springham

  • "I'd like to thank you very much for your help in getting my husband some recompense for the horrors that he's suffered. Your openness and honesty have enabled him to move forward with his life."

    Mrs Springham

  • "Dear Jonathan ... I am writing to say a huge thank-you, in many ways the biggest thank-you of my life, for agreeing to take on my case and seeing it through to a successful settlement. To say I couldn't have done it without you is rather stating the obvious but to have someone of your reputation and expertise representing me was doubtless a massive privilege... you really understood me as a boy and as an adult and could see just how the abuse had changed things. This personal insight shows me that you really take the proper care and time to understand your client..."

    Ben MacDonald

  • "The outcome has been way above any expectations...Once again many thanks for all your hard work and effort, I am very grateful."

    Christopher O'Connor

  • "I would like to thank you for resolving this matter. I have been extremely impressed with the professional service your company has provided throughout the case. I highly recommend your company to others."

    Darren Beattie

  • "Thank you!! You have a way of putting people at their ease. When people are not too sure of themselves this helps 100%. Keep up the good work."

    Graham Webb

  • "To Bolt Burdon Kemp, I would like to thank Jonathan Wheeler and his team for representing us in a professional, respectful and sensitive manner throughout our lengthy claim for compensation against a Local Authority which has finally been settled. We can now put closure to the trauma and move on emotionally."

    May James

  • "Thank you immensely for all your help and kindness during my case."

    Florence Bello

  • "Jonathan Wheeler and David McClenaghan are consummate professionals, surrounded by a first rate team at Bolt Burdon Kemp. Every step of the process was explained, they responded to communications quickly and they were always understanding and considerate when discussing a particularly sensitive subject. Despite nearly 30 years passing since the original offences, their knowledge and specialist experience in the field of Childhood Sexual Abuse lead to a significant award of damages. As the perpetrator of the crimes committed suicide before the criminal trial, the additional sense of justice being served is, in my mind, priceless."

    Anonymous Child Abuse Claim

  • "Just a quick note to thank you and your team for all you have done over the time of this case. The way you have conducted yourself, your expertise and compassion during what has been a difficult time for me and my family has been handled with extreme professionalism. I would certainly recommend you and your team to anyone who requires a unique law firm."

    Gary

  • "These last couple of years have not been easy for me and I appreciate the fact that any time I have needed to meet with you or deal with any aspect of this case you and your staff have been helpful, caring and supportive.Your attitude has helped me to feel that I have the right to fight back and enabled me to feel stronger...Thank you."

    Steve Foster

  • "Thank you so much for all the hard work you put into my case for me. I greatly appreciate the support and faith you showed in the case and me. Please thank Mel for me too, as I am very aware of the hard endless hours she put in also."

    Avril Brady

  • "It is a great relief to have achieved such an outcome...Everyone involved has offered great support and personal service and we are very grateful. We were recommended to you and clearly with good reason."

    N & S McAuley

  • "I thought I would just write to formally express my sincere thanks for all the work you have undertaken on my behalf over the course of the last year or so. It has been an unsettling experience at times, however your advice and counsel during this time greatly helped to steer me through some difficult periods. Once again, many thanks for your help and assistance."

    Mark Ashwin

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