Professional Regulation, Conduct and Discipline

Are you a professional facing fitness to practise proceedings before your regulator? Or are you a regulator looking for a case presenter or for some advisory assistance or panel training or selection?

I lead Clerksroom’s (my Chambers) Professional Regulation Practise Group.

I have been an advocate for professionals, case presenter for regulators, panel member and Chair for a number of regulators, advisor and trainer for over 12 years. I have experience with the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants, Construction Industry Council, Nursing and Midwifery Council, Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (General Medical Council) and others.

One decision I was involved in as a Tribunal member was unsuccessfully judicially reviewed. The Judgment included “It is to Mr Somerville’s credit… Mr Somerville was right to probe… entirely fair of him… perfectly sensible.”  This decision was unsuccessfully appealed. Dismissing the subsequent appeal to the Court of Appeal the Master of the Rolls’ in his judgment said: “entirely understandable and appropriate“, that I was “entitled to ask the questions”  asked and that the perceptions of the Dr and her lawyer did “not undermine the legitimacy and appropriateness” of the questioning.

Written appraisals from the MPTS include: “Exceeds competency… Strengths have been noted across all competency areas… ability to grasp complex documentation, while making balanced and succinct decisions which were evidence based… effective contributions to in-camera discussions… ability to listen and challenge others politely, when it was appropriate… supportive approach in in-camera discussions with colleagues.”

Written feedback from the NMC includes: “Performance exceeds expectations” in all metrics and from colleagues includes: “Outstanding”, “inclusive”, “business-like”, “effective use of our time”, “very collaborative”, “…exemplary. He was logical, methodical and analytical and articulated his view clearly…. [he asked] highly insightful questions… When the question asked was not answered, Mr Somerville pressed for a proper answer” and“It is rare to meet such a refreshingly honest approach”.

I have delivered board and panel training to a number of leading regulators and regulated commercial organisations in the UK and abroad and have written of a number of codes of conduct including for statutory regimes requiring approval by the relevant Secretary of State.

I am available to advise or represent registrants, act as case presenter or legal assessor in respect of any of the following:

•       Response to investigations
•       Interim orders hearings
•       Substantive misconduct, conviction and health cases
•       Substantive order reviews
•       Registration appeals
•       Appeals against panel findings

I am a member of the Association for Regulatory and Disciplinary Lawyers. I can be instructed by professionals and regulators direct under the public access scheme, or via a solicitor.