Rebecca Sheriff | Solicitor in the Abuse Team | BBK Rebecca Sheriff | Solicitor in the Abuse Team | BBK

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Rebecca is a Partner and Solicitor in the Abuse department at Bolt Burdon Kemp.  She joined the firm in 2011 as a newly qualified solicitor.

Rebecca represents adults who have suffered sexual abuse in childhood in claims against organisations such as the church, the Scout Association, schools and local authorities, in addition to many others that have taken advantage of their positions of authority.  Rebecca also represents a number of children who have been victims of abuse.

Rebecca acts in claims against individual abusers and has successfully obtained court orders for the sale of property belonging to individual abusers so that her clients’ compensation can be paid after bringing a successful claim.

Rebecca has particular expertise in bringing claims against the Ministry of Defence for sexual abuse and assaults carried out by their employees or volunteers.  She has acted for clients who have suffered abuse across all branches of the Ministry of Defence but in particular the regular Army and the Cadets (Army Cadets, Sea Cadets and the Air Cadets).  As part of a number of claims Rebecca has unearthed gross negligence by the Ministry of Defence which has proven to be entirely preventable thereby adding an aggravating feature to the claims for which her clients must be additionally compensated.

In addition Rebecca also maintains a personal injury caseload acting for victims of sexual assault and assists with applications to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority.  This includes submitting reviews to the authority and the Tribunal where initial applications and reviews have been wrongly rejected.  She is proud to have a 100% success rate with these cases.

Rebecca regularly appears in the written press, on TV and on radio commenting on latest developments in this area of law and discussing her client’s successful cases.  In April 2017 Rebecca appeared on BBC 2’s Victoria Derbyshire program discussing a case in which she acted, concerning the negligence of Cambridge County Council in allowing a pupil to be abused for a number of years by her teacher despite serious concerns of abuse perpetrated by the same teacher at a previous school under their authority.  Her client was awarded £550,000 for the abuse that she suffered, which is believed to be the largest out of court settlement by a local authority for abuse in a school.

In July 2017 Rebecca featured in the BBC’s Panorama episode entitled ‘Cadet Abuse Cover Up’ regarding abuse in the Cadets, alongside a number of her clients.  As part of her work in bringing claims against the Ministry of Defence for abuse carried out by their employees and volunteers, Rebecca uncovered evidence suggesting that the abuse some of her clients had suffered could have been entirely prevented.  Rebecca hopes that by raising awareness of the issue of sexual abuse in the Cadets, which to date had not been widely publicised, this will give survivors the courage to come forward and make reports to the police, so that their abusers can be successfully prosecuted.

Reported cases

  • BDA v Domenico Quirino [2015] EWHC 2974 (QB) – successful claim for compensation for a client who suffered serious sexual abuse at the hands of her karate teacher.  The abuse caused a delay to the commencement of her career and she was awarded a substantial sum specifically for loss of earnings.  In total Rebecca’s client was awarded £173,786.70 in addition to her legal costs.
  • FKB v Lampitt [2015] EWHC 3368 (QB) – a claim for compensation for a client who suffered sexual abuse for a number of years in childhood.  The court recognised the serious impact of the abuse upon Rebecca’s client and the Defendant was ordered to pay her £205,965.61 in addition to her legal costs.  We successfully obtained an order for sale of the Defendant’s property to secure payment of Rebecca’s client’s compensation.

Media contributions and commentary

The Guardian – MOD pays £2 million to Settle Cadets Sexual Abuse Claims

Manchester Evening News – Army Cadet Sergeant Major Unveiled as Predatory Paedophile

The Times Brief – Ministry of Defence has a lot to answer over cadet abuse

Evening Telegraph – Sexual abuse of cadets was covered up by officials

Manchester Evening News – Men abused by army cadet sergeant major in 70’s and 80’s awarded compensation

Professional memberships

  • Association of Child Abuse Lawyers – Panel Member
  • Association of Personal Injury Lawyers – Accredited as a Senior Litigator
  • Association of Women Solicitors

Rebecca's Recent Posts

Abuse Claims
Child abuse has increased due to Covid-19. How can we better safeguard our children?

By Rebecca Sheriff
Child Abuse
Army Cadet Force put young victims through court martial style hearing to dissuade them from…

When our client was a young boy he joined the Wombwell Army Cadet Force along with a number of his school friends.  Captain Keith Bentley…

By Rebecca Sheriff
Child Abuse
Operation Hydrant provides survivor support via new video, demystifying the reporting process

Operation Hydrant, working with Police Scotland, have developed a short animated film aimed at providing supportive information to adult survivors of child abuse, who may…

By Rebecca Sheriff
  • Rebecca was nice, thoughtful and compassionate.  She was very professional, she kept in touch with me and would text me to update me - I found that very helpful.
  • Rebecca was very professional, she could not have handled this better and she always kept me informed.  The service at Bolt Burdon Kemp was really excellent from start to finish.  I was very impressed with the firm.
    GC
  • We love Rebecca, she is hands down one of the best people I have ever met - she knows exactly what she is doing.  Rebecca is one of our heroes, compassionate & understanding.  She was really fantastic and I have nothing but good things to say about Bolt Burdon Kemp.
    Bill
  • I was so happy with the service given to me by Rebecca.  The help and support I received from her and the firm in general not only saved my life but changed it for the better.  I never felt I was “just another case”.  Everyone I came into contact with…

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