- professional discipline; regulatory; sports Law; employment
- 020 7484 7594
Simon rejoined Hempsons in January 2020 as part of our merger with Eastwoods. Since qualifying in the UK in 1984, Simon has specialised in defence and insurance-related work and is consistently recognised in both Chambers & Partners and the Legal 500 as a leader in the field of professional discipline.
Having originally qualified in Melbourne, Australia, Simon moved to the UK in 1988 and joined healthcare specialists, Hempsons for the first time! In 1997, he joined Winckworth Sherwood, where he helped to establish a healthcare practice within the litigation department. In July 2004, Simon founded Eastwoods where he has maintained his healthcare and regulatory practice, in addition to developing a practice in employment and sports-related matters.
Main areas of expertise
- regulatory defence
- sport disciplinary
- criminal defence
- public enquiries
- judicial review/appeals
Simon has developed a core practice in regulatory defence, particularly in representing healthcare professionals, and is consistently ranked as a leader in the field. Throughout his lengthy career, Simon has successfully represented numerous clients facing investigations by bodies such as the GMC, GDC, NMC, HCPC, SWE and SRA. He has been involved in some of the most high-profile cases to date and has been described by one source as a “legend in his own lifetime”.
In addition to representing clients facing investigations by their regulatory bodies, Simon has maintained a strong practice in hospital trust disciplinary matters, under the current framework “Maintaining High Professional Standards in the Modern NHS” (MHPS), as well as for NHS performers list investigations and hearings, including high court challenges.
As a natural development from his core professional discipline practice, Simon has assisted a number of clients with wide-ranging and often high-profile employment-related issues. This has included Dr Eva Carneiro in her employment tribunal claim against Chelsea FC and Jose Mourinho. Simon has significant experience of assisting healthcare practitioners with employment-related issues with hospital trusts, particularly following on from regulatory and/or internal disciplinary investigations. Simon is acutely aware of the sensitivity of these matters and scope for reputational damage, and is known for his pragmatic approach to what can often be highly stressful proceedings.
As a member of the Sports Resolution pro bono panel, Simon has developed a keen sports-related practice, including disciplinary, anti-doping and safeguarding investigations, arbitration and litigation. This has included assisting sports amateurs, professionals and healthcare practitioners in a sporting context. Simon has represented clients before disciplinary panels, selection and funding committees and in relation to UKAD anti-doping inquiries, with highlights including having represented a British paralympic athlete challenging his non-selection for the Paralympic Games in 2012, the successful resistance to a national governing body attempt to withdraw a coaching license for safeguarding reasons, as well as successfully defending an application to withdraw the UK Sport eligibility funding for an olympic athlete.
Simon has, throughout his career, represented many clients with participation in coroner’s inquests. This has, in particular, focused on representing doctors involved either as “interested persons” or as witnesses in inquests where there is a suggestion of clinical negligence or neglect contributing to a death, and several of the matters Simon has been involved in have attracted considerable press interest. Simon has often undertaken advocacy of the inquest itself and/or at pre-inquest review hearings, in addition to working closely with counsel where needed.
Simon has represented many individuals facing criminal investigations. Simon assists from police interview through to trial and has successfully defended clients charged with a wide range of allegations, including in sexual assault, gross negligence manslaughter and fraud. Simon’s experience also includes having advised and represented the senior police officer in the private criminal proceedings following the Taylor Inquiry (which related to the 1989 Hillsborough Disaster).
Over the years, Simon has been involved in some of the most high-profile and important public inquiries, including the Bristol Royal Infirmary Inquiry into children’s cardiac surgery, Shipman Inquiry, Mubarek Inquiry and Redfern Inquiry.
Simon has a wealth of experience of assisting clients with claims for judicial review, injunctions and appeals (arising from both civil and criminal proceedings).
Range of clients
- defence organisations
- individual healthcare practitioners
- other professionals
- Haileybury College, Melbourne, Australia 1971 – 1974
- LLB (Hons), University of Melbourne, Australia 1975 – 1978
- LLM, University of Melbourne, Australia 1979 – 1981
- Post Graduate Diploma in Sports Law, Kings College, London
- Member: Sports Resolution pro bono panel
- Member: Royal Society of Medicine (RSM)
“Simon Eastwood – the doyen of the professional discipline world.” Legal 500
“Simon Eastwood is a seasoned and highly respected expert in the field of professional discipline. He possesses considerable experience in representing doctors and dentists facing internal investigations, as well as GMC and GDC fitness-to-practise hearings.” Chambers
Stephen Hooper and Simon Eastwood give some essential guidance on practising privileges for independent practitioners.
2020 will be a particularly exciting year for everyone at Hempsons and Eastwoods, as the two firms merge to create a powerful new force in regulatory, disciplinary and healthcare law.
Simon Eastwood, instructing Mary O’Rourke QC of Old Square Chambers, is representing Dr Richard Freeman in respect of his ongoing proceedings before the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service.
Simon Eastwood, who instructed Adrian Hopkins QC of Serjeants Inn chambers, recently represented a Singapore-based doctor in relation to fitness to practise proceedings brought by the General Medical Council (GMC).
Eastwoods is pleased to announce that we have once again been recognised as a leading firm in the Legal 500 for Crime and Professional Discipline.
Should an independent doctor be available at all matches, solely for the purpose of assessing head injuries?
We are delighted to announce that Eastwoods has recently been added to the Legal Service Providers Panel of the Police Federation of England and Wales.
Simon Eastwood (instructing Jamas Hodivala of 2 Bedford Row) successfully represented a General Dental Practitioner before a Professional Conduct Committee of the General Dental Council.
Simon Eastwood spoke at the Medical Equestrian Association at their annual conference in Reading on medico-legal aspects of providing care at sporting events.
Eastwoods Recognised in Legal 500 for Professional Discipline and Crime
““[Simon is] a vigorous and effective advocate” who is “very able and thorough.” “He continues to be highly regarded for his representation of healthcare practitioners."”
“[Simon has] robust advice combined with tactical awareness and a good client manner. He is well regarded in the marketplace for his representation of medical professionals facing disciplinary proceedings.
“He’s very experienced and knows the regulation of medical professionals inside out. He’s very thorough and very knowledgeable.”
“Simon Eastwood is a standout lawyer who is well known for defending healthcare professionals before the GDC and GMC. Sources say: “He is hugely experienced. What he doesn’t know about regulatory work isn’t worth knowing.”
“Friendly, unpretentious and prepared to work hard to achieve results.”