We recently caught up with Nina Ramsden, director and head of the catastrophic injury department at specialist personal injury firm, Jefferies Solicitors. Topics of conversation included the reasons behind Nina’s passion for helping people affected by brain injury, her fascination with Ancient Rome and The Testaments by Margaret Atwood.
At Jefferies, you head up the catastrophic injury team – what made you decide to specialise in this particular area of law?
My work mainly involves dealing with clients who have been left with injury to the brain of varying degrees. I was exposed to this type of work first as a trainee and found the area fascinating from a legal and medical perspective. I find how the brain reacts and recovers from injury, advances in medicine over the last 20 years and the increasing medical awareness of the potential for rehabilitation in these cases really interesting. I feel privileged to be able to work with individuals and families who find themselves in life-changing situations after a catastrophic injury and simply enjoy being able to help them access rehabilitation and funds that will make their lives easier.
What would you say has been the highlight of your career so far?
There have been many highlights. From, as a trainee solicitor, taking responsibility for a high-value structured-settlement case involving a minor, to working on the Public Inquiry into the Southall & Paddington rail accidents on behalf of passengers, setting up the catastrophic injury department at Jefferies, to being appointed a Deputy District Judge earlier this year – there have been many highlights and lots of memorable cases!
If you hadn’t have become a solicitor, what would have been your plan B?
I wanted to be an archaeologist! I am fascinated by history and the way people lived and an avid reader and watcher of programmes on the subject with a special interest in Roman history. I would love to and still hope to go back to university one day to read Archaeology part-time!
Who has been your biggest career inspiration and why?
I would say working with the veteran human rights lawyer Louise Christian in the 1990s was a real eye-opener for me. Louise had a real focus on and dedication to clients and causes and had absolutely no fear of challenging the status quo and those in authority. Working with her had a big impact on me.
What was the last book you read?
The Testaments by Margaret Atwood, the sequel to the Handmaid’s Tale. I loved it! I remember reading The Handmaid’s Tale in the 1980s, I thought the concept was completely dystopian and thought it was great science fiction. Reading its sequel in 2019, in a completely different era, one can see disturbing parallels with the world today and the erosion of women’s rights in so many parts of the world. So while it was a great read it is also a warning to guard again threats to equality.
Which country have you always wanted to visit?
Australia and New Zealand – the scenery in New Zealand and the beaches in Australia look fantastic. I hope to get there someday.
What do you do to unwind after a busy day at the office?
Having three teenagers, I don’t have much time to unwind. I am a bit of a yoga devotee and enjoy running as well the odd glass of wine – in that order!
About Nina Ramsden
Nina Ramsden is a Director and senior solicitor at specialist personal injury law firm, Jefferies Solicitors. She has worked within claimant personal injury and clinical negligence since qualifying as a solicitor in 1994 and has specialised in serious brain and spinal injury cases for more than twenty years. Nina is an APIL-accredited Senior Litigator and in March 2019, was appointed as a Deputy District Judge on the Northern Circuit.