I'm Luke Daniels and I'm a partner in our Medical Negligence department.
It's such a privilege to work on cases with people who’ve been seriously injured or have life changing injuries. When you get to know someone during a case, you develop a very unique relationship with them. That’s the most rewarding part of my job, meeting people during a challenging time and helping them and their families to find security.
I always get frustrated if people roll their eyes when I tell them I'm a lawyer, or think that in some way it’s negative. I’m really passionate about making sure people understand exactly what it is that we do. We can change people's lives for the better. We make sure that people are secure and in the best position they can possibly be for the rest of their lives following devastating injuries.
When I first joined the legal profession in 2000, it was quite a different place to what it is today. There wasn't the sort of support groups or networking groups that we rely on now.
Irwin Mitchell was one of the first law firms to introduce networking groups very early on. It's part of our DNA and pre-dates any work that’s done around scoring highly in particular inclusion indexes. For me, it just shows that it's part of our day-to-day work and who we are as a firm.
IM Equal is our networking group for our LGBTQ+ colleagues. I’ve been a member of IM Equal since it first began in 2005 and I’ve been chairing it for the past ten years. It’s a place for LGBTQ+ colleagues to share any difficulties they’re facing, and to feed into the group's policies to make sure they’re representative of our community.
It’s so important that as a firm, we represent and celebrate people who’re different. We need to make sure we’re attracting talent from all sorts of diverse backgrounds. Representing the communities we work with helps our clients to see themselves reflected in our business.
This helps us to build relationships based on an understanding and respect for the different backgrounds our clients come from.
I'm quite a friendly person so when I first started studying law, I didn't know if it was going to suit me. But I was lucky enough to find myself here, where people are at the heart of everything we do. Here, I can use both my knowledge and my personality to change people's lives and make things better for them. That’s the human touch that matters to me.
It's really important that we're able to develop strong relationships with our clients. Litigation can often take several years, and there’re going to be lots of difficult things that we'll go through together.
I always feel a bit sad at the end of a case. I have great relationships with my clients, and don’t like saying goodbye to them. But the great thing about Irwin Mitchell is that many of our clients will continue to work with us for life, through lots of the other services we offer. So it's great to be able to say, ‘we’re always there and I'll be there for you.'
Clients often stay in touch with me years after we finish the case. Very recently, I was asked to an old client's 18th birthday party in their new property, which was really nice. And I think it just goes to show the strength of the relationships we build with our clients over the years that we work with them.
Celebrating Our Differences
I've worked at Irwin Mitchell for over 21 years. There aren’t a lot of roles here that I haven’t done at some point. I was a paralegal, I became a trainee, I qualified as a solicitor and then I was able to become a partner.
Throughout that time, it's always been a fantastic place to work. I've been able to be my genuine, authentic self at work and I’ve never had any obstacles put in my way. I've always been accepted for who I am and what I have to bring, and my career has gone from strength to strength as a result.
It's important that the LGBTQ+ community have visible role models that they can see in senior positions. I know when I was growing up, that was what helped me, and that's something that I'm really passionate about giving back.
The Future Of Our Firm
A huge amount of LGBTQ+ people are still hiding their identities at work. Businesses need to support people and make sure they feel comfortable to come out in the workplace. Everyone can show allyship by making sure that networking groups are in place, that senior role models are visible, and that people understand that it's okay to be themselves.
I’m proud to have worked here for nearly 22 years and I’ve witnessed so much positive change. If you want to be part of that in the future, come and join us.
Read Luke's professional profile
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