The keenly-watched administration of Midlands firm Challinors this evening (20 August) led to a first sale of its personal injury caseload to Liverpool-based SGI Legal.
Birmingham-headquartered Challinors in July became the latest sizeable law firm to call in administrators, having filed a notice of intention to appoint Eric Walls and Wayne Harrison from KSA Group as administrators, who were then replaced by RSM Tenon.
This deal, for an undisclosed sum, is for all work in progress (WIP) including serious injury, employers’ liability and public liability claims. The personal injury work will be transferred to SGI’s offices in Liverpool. None of the partners of Challinors will be transferring to SGI Legal.
For SGI Legal, the purchase of Challinors’ WIP is the firm’s first acquisition since becoming an alternative business structure on 1 August. The 60-staff firm said it expects the acquisition to be the first of many over the coming year. Mark O’Connor of O’Connors and Lesley Graves of Citadel Law advised SGI Legal on the transaction.
Having launched only just over a year ago, SGI Legal has produced a turnover of £5m in its first year. Managing partner Simon Gibson said: ‘Our structure and resources have enabled us to respond swiftly to the opportunity that arose due to Challinors’ difficult circumstances. We have been pleased to work with the firm’s partnership and the likely administrators to ensure a smooth transition for clients whose best interests will remain our top priority.
‘We’ve made no secret of our growth ambitions and have structured our firm to take advantage of developments in the personal injury sector. This will not be our last acquisition.’
The sale of the remainder of Challinors’ business is expected any day.