Melissa Crow

Partner – Family – Nottingham

Melissa joined Bhatia Best in 2022 and brought with her a wealth of experience having worked all of her previous career in Family Law. She is committed to providing assistance to the most vulnerable in society and has built her practice handling high volumes of legal aid cases. She is a true champion for Access to Justice.

Melissa holds both the Law Society Children Law and Resolution Specialist accreditations, making her extremely versatile and equipping her with a broad set of tools to deploy upon a case. Often instructed by a Local Authority to represent Children where social workers have taken steps to remove them from their parents. This involves careful and meticulous analysis of evidence, meeting with vulnerable clients, preparing their cases and appearing on their behalf before Courts.

Outside of her professional life, Melissa is a keen athlete and has twice completed the 3 Peaks Challenge. There truly is no mountain high enough!

Joanne Chidlow

Partner – Family – Nottingham

Joanne specialises in Private Family Law and is a member of Resolution. Her practice is almost solely focussed upon assisting those parties who, at the breakdown of their relationships, are not able to reach a mutual understanding in respect of their assets and affairs.

Joanne assists couples and families when they are going through one of the hardest and most stressful times, helping them to try to resolve their differences by negotiation, dispute resolution and arbitration. If all else fails, Joanne is able to assist by way of litigation in order to bring about the desired outcome for the party she represents.

Where Children are involved, Joanne is able to assist in defining the desired arrangements for them. Where they will live, their education, contact with family members or any actions that the party expressly wishes to prohibit.

Joanne brings years of experience and a down-to-earth approach when it comes to managing a case. Providing realistic, no-nonsense advice, dedication and a clear pathway through the dispute enables Joanne to lead her clients through what is invariably a highly stressful and anxious time.

Neil O’Sullivan

Partner – Crime – Nottingham

Neil is a senior solicitor and Partner of the firm. Qualified as a solicitor in 1996, Neil brings a wealth of experience to the team and there are very few issues he hasn’t encountered over the years. Neil is also a qualified Higher Courts Advocate, enabling him to appear in the Crown Court, and is a specialist in dealing with cases involving vulnerable individuals, both defendants and witnesses. He also has substantial experience dealing with Football related incidents and where Banning Orders are sought by the Police.

Neil’s real strength is in the Youth Court – representing young people charged, whether for the first time or repeat offenders, often with serious offences such as Robbery, Sexual Assault and Violence. His commanding knowledge of the Youth Justice System makes him one of the top youth specialist Solicitors in the East Midlands.

Morgan Hogarth

Partner – Crime – Nottingham/Mansfield

Morgan is a Partner within the Crime department and undertakes representation of those detained at the Police Station under arrest or charged to appear before the Magistrates Court. One of our regular trial advocates, Morgan is well trained in getting straight to the heart of the issue and presenting his clients case succinctly yet vigorously.

As well as managing a caseload, Morgan is directly involved in our liaisons with the Legal Aid Agency.

Matthew Smith

Solicitor / Higher Courts Advocate – Crime – Nottingham

Matthew joined Bhatia Best in 2016 having been a Partner in another local firm for nearly 10 years. He now practices as an in-house Higher Court Advocate almost exclusively in the Crown Court and Court of Appeal dealing with some of our most serious cases. Matthew covers the whole spectrum of criminal offences to include drugs, firearms and fraud. His specialism is particularly in dealing with cases where defendants are suffering from mental health issues and are charged with serious violence or sexual offences.

Matthew is regularly appointed by the Court to represent defendants suffering from a disability under the Mental Health Act. He has also conducted cases before the Courts Martial and the Royal Courts of Justice.

Lynsey Wadkinson

Partner – Crime – Derby

Lynsey qualified as a Solicitor in 2010 and is now a Supervisor of the Derby branch of the Crime Department. While maintaining an active caseload of her own, Lynsey leads the way in ensuring that every case is given the best attention by the most appropriate individual in her team. Meticulous by nature, any case that Lynsey directly manages is always thoroughly prepared.

As Supervisor in Derby, Lynsey ensures that those in her team all the tools they need to be at their best at all times.

Amandeep Basra

Partner– Civil Litigation – Nottingham

Amandeep is one of our Judicial Review specialist solicitors in the Public Law department. She studied and trained in Nottingham. Now she supervises a team of Trainee Solicitors and Paralegals who are dedicated to representing the most vulnerable in society, including unaccompanied children who need assistance to establish asylum status.

Amandeep is a conscientious and efficient lawyer with experience representing Claimants against Local Authorities and the Secretary of State for the Home Department in cases where an unlawful, unreasonable or irrational decision requires robust challenge.

Pars Samrai

Partner – Crime – Nottingham

Pars has been a Partner in the Crime Department since the firm was incepted in 1993. He brings an unparalleled depth of experience to the local Criminal Defence community.

In over 30 years, there are very few scenarios that Pars has not encountered in the life cycle of a Criminal Case.
His approach to all aspects of Criminal Litigation is thorough and tenacious, always having the best interests of his clients at the forefront of his mind.

As Head of Crime, Pars provides invaluable guidance and support to all staff in the department and is highly regarded by fellow professionals across the region.

Scott Laing

Partner – Civil Litigation – Nottingham

Scott joined Bhatia Best in 2009 as a Paralegal and is now a Partner of the firm.

As a senior solicitor in the Public Law department, Scott manages a caseload of Judicial Reviews challenging decisions made by public bodies which often go against the rights of vulnerable individuals. Many of Scott’s cases appear in the British and Irish Legal Information Institute (BAILII) reports.

As department supervisor, Scott manages a team of Solicitors, Trainees and Paralegals to process cases with exceptional care and skill, always identifying and raising new challenges. Once a case is decided in the High Court, the downstream effect is that a precedent is created that often brings about changes to the way in which a public body operates its decision-making process. In that sense, Scott and his team are truly at the cutting edge of developing law and policy in the UK.

Steve Ramsell

Partner – Crime – Nottingham

Steve is a Partner and Solicitor Higher Courts Advocate. He came to Bhatia Best in 2002 as a Placement Student as part of his LL.B Law Degree with Nottingham Trent University. As many have over the years, Steve returned to pursue his training with us, completing his LPC at Nottingham Law School, achieving Police Station Accreditation, Qualification and Higher Rights of Audience.

Steve is highly experienced and able to conduct cases from their beginnings in the police station to their conclusion before the Crown Court and even the Royal Courts of Justice on Appeal. His incisive nature means that he can quickly get to the heart of a matter and provide his clients with uncomplicated advice

Now, as Manager of the Crime Department, Steve is responsible for the day to day running. Providing direction, guidance and support to all staff, ensuring that cases are properly deployed and progressed and, in rare cases, dealing with any problems that may arise.