Dan is an associate solicitor in the human rights department, working as part of Merry Varney’s team.
Dan does a wide range of work, primarily in the context of mental health and social care and gambling harms. This includes representing bereaved families at inquests, acting for claimants in human rights and discrimination claims and in actions for judicial review, and representing individuals who lack capacity in Court of Protection proceedings.
Dan qualified as a solicitor in September 2022, following the completion of his training contract.
In the second seat of his training contract, Dan worked with Nichola Marshall and Paula Lee in the international and group litigation and employment departments. He worked primarily on cases related to gambling, including the group claim arising from the collapse of Football Index, and cases on behalf of individuals who have suffered harm as a result of a gambling disorder.
Dan completed the first seat of his training contract with Merry Varney’s team in the human rights department. His work included representing bereaved families at inquests, acting for claimants in human rights and discrimination claims and in actions for judicial review, and representing individuals who lack capacity in Court of Protection proceedings.
Prior to his training contract, Dan joined the firm in January 2017 and initially worked in the clinical negligence department, where he gained experience of working on birth and maternal injury claims and fatal accident claims, before joining the human rights department as a paralegal in September 2018.
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Examples of cases Dan has worked on include the following:
- Inquest touching the death of Jack Ritchie - The inquest into Jack’s death concluded in March 2022. The Coroner found that gambling led to Jack’s death and that the regulation, information and treatment for gambling problems at the time of his death were “woefully inadequate”.
- Inquest touching the death of Philippa Day - The inquest into Philippa’s death concluded in January 2021. The Coroner found that the problems Philippa had with her application for disability benefits, as a result of systemic failings on the part of the DWP and Capita, were the predominant factor which led to her death. Following the inquest, Dan was part of the team which represented Philippa’s family in a civil claim against the DWP and Capita, which was settled in autumn 2021.
- Application for a new inquest into the death of Jodey Whiting - Dan was part of the team which represented Joy Dove (Jodey’s mother) in her application to the High Court for a new inquest to investigate whether failings by the DWP contributed to Jodey’s death. The application was rejected by the High Court, following a hearing in June 2021, but Joy has recently been granted permission to appeal that decision by the Court of Appeal.
Education and previous experience
Before joining the firm, Dan studied law at Durham University and worked at Liberty as an advice & information volunteer.
Memberships and committees
Dan is a member of the Young Lawyers’ Committee of the Human Rights Lawyers’ Association of INQUEST Lawyers Group. Within Leigh Day, he is part of the Green Committee and the Disability Committee.
News and blogs
Pre-inquest review into the death of Jodey Whiting, aged 42
A pre-inquest review hearing into the death of Jodey Whiting will be held on Friday 24 November 2023 at 11am at Teesside Magistrates Court in Middlesbrough.
Coroner concludes Luke Ashton died as a result of gambling disorder and a lack of meaningful intervention from Betfair
The inquest into the death of Luke Ashton has concluded that a gambling disorder caused his death by suicide. It is believed that this is the first time that this has ever been recorded in an inquest. Area Coroner Ivan Cartwright added that he will be making a Prevention of Future Deaths report, which will include his concerns about a lack of meaningful interaction or intervention in Luke’s gambling by the gambling operator Betfair, owned by Flutter.