The Johnson Partnership Info
The Johnson Partnership Solicitors in Nottingham, Sheffield, Doncaster & Derby: Review
This was an odd one for us to review and whether you've already tried checking out this firm elsewhere or not - please do take the time to read through the following article. Typically when we research a firm for one of these articles, there is a wealth of information out there. We search the regular review sites in order get a general 'feel' or spot common complaints to alert people about. We check through the Legal Ombudsman's database, law society records, newspapers, and even rummage around page 13 of the search engine results looking for things other people might miss.
All this is to hopefully provide a good overview and a wide range of facts to help people decide whether to use this firm. The biggest problem we had on this occasion was that the information was not always clear, or even about the correct firm.
For example, a basic search on the firm's name brings up plenty of search engine results and Google displays star ratings next to ones that provide such options. Unfortunately, there are quite a few "The Johnson Partnership"'s going about. Not even half the results/reviews in the search results we saw were actually about The Johnson Partnership criminal defence firm based out of Nottingham. There was a group of architects, a carpet cleaning company, and another law firm that wasn't even based in the UK but Seattle, Washington. Bravo Google on such amazing relevance.
It's not just Google though. Yelp.co.uk brought up reviews for the US law firm as well. In fact during our initial search, the only review appearing to be about the correct firm was a 1☆ comment on 192.com complaining that the solicitor was too friendly with the police officers. That was it, and despite having never been a criminal solicitor - I would imagine the old 'honey vs vinegar' adage would apply when dealing with the police anyway?
It wasn't until we put quotation marks around the firm's name (which forces Google to match the search term identically) and added the town name Nottingham as well - that more useful reviews popped up. At the time of writing, they have 7 reviews on Google that are all 5☆. Not just that, but they look like genuine 5☆ reviews too (i.e. not all written on the same day by seven people who have never written any reviews about any other firms).
There were other issues people might run into when researching this firm that we'll come to later, but first we need to go over a few things about Johnsons in general. The first paragraph of the firm's website states:
We've found that most people seek out a local solicitor for criminal defence help. If you use our enquiry form on the right, you'll be shown solicitors based on your location for that very reason. However, with some firms the solicitor you choose will not always be the person that represents you in court should the matter go to trial. For many case types, solicitors may opt to or may have to select a barrister to do the representing. That's an important scenario to ask about when calling up any criminal defence firm. Again from the Johnson's official website:
The larger the firm, the more likelyhood that you'll get plenty of face-to-face time with the people that will actually be handling your case. It's not uncommon for smaller firms to take all of your information, hire a third party barrister, but you only get to meet that barrister for the first time on the day of your trial. No, really. When I worked in immigration, I was the guy that showed up at the immigration centre when the person's own solicitor couldn't make it. Often clients were not told of the substitution. I would usually have zero notes other than the person's name, and have to wing it during interviews.
So when you see the words 'as the largest' from a criminal firm that has run for nearly three decades with list of 10 offices spread around the centre of England - it means a lot more in relation to criminal defence work than something like personal injury claims.
Those two facts about being the biggest and being a criminal law firm are important to remember for context, not just when reading reviews, but also when comparing them with other criminal firms listed with the Legal Ombudsman and even when simply flicking through news articles. Whilst many of the firm's clients will be innocent and just good people caught in bad situations, they will have a huge amount of clients that are not nice people at all. This was highlighted in one article where a solicitor at The Johnson Partnership was stalked by a very disturbed and dangerous woman who ended up actually breaking in to the poor woman's home with a knife and a rope.
The firm has actually had quite an extensive amount of media coverage including mentions in TV and Radio documentaries. They have a list on their website but sadly no links to any of them. Again, when trying to search for their largest piece of coverage by Channel 4 entitled "Partners in Crime" - there is nothing but information about the far more recent David Walliams drama from the BBC that shares the same name.
So coming back to what I said at the start - this was an odd one. If you skim through our other articles, you'll see lots of varied information from varied sources expressed in varied ways about each firm. This time we spent hours flicking through stuff as usual, but everyone working on this research came to the same conclusion - i.e. getting the full clear story from the internet was not going to be possible on this occasion.
So why do we recommend people to The Johnson Partnership? Because the staff here at 1to1Legal have all worked in various sections of the legal industry. Immigration, insurance, police officer, court work, accident investigation, solicitor, etc. - and we believe that when it comes to criminal law, size and speciality really can make a difference. The Johnsons Partnership only does criminal law and they do a lot of it with a lot of in-house staff.
Just as an aside (and we'll probably get complaints about this) but the 1☆ review we saw where the client complained about his solicitor acting friendly with the police? We can't understand that. As a scared client having been dragged into a police station, if our solicitor wanted to overtly flirt with the officer in charge - they'd have our blessing. Only as a scared client of course. As legal professionals we couldn't possibly condone such tactics ...
A quick note on navigation. The official site is www.thejohnsonpartnership.co.uk and as I mentioned above www.thejohnsonpartnership.com is a US law firm. Both www.johnsonpartnership.co.uk and www.johnsonpartnership.com are owned by other people too so it's probably best to bookmark the site once you're on it to save time later. This is the kind of contact you'll probably not want to be faffing around trying to find details for when the time comes.
General Notes: Usually if Legal Aid is possible we've mentioned it above, but you can always ask. We haven't looked in depth at their recruitment program so are unaware of any job vacancies available. For a career with The Johnson Partnership it's best to visit the website (www.thejohnsonpartnership.co.uk), check opening hours, and find the correct phone/email contact details. Simply emailing a CV to reception looks lazy. Each law firm's Law Society and/or SRA number should be on their site, usually at the bottom of each page.
This The Johnson Partnership article is rated
4.5 / 5 based on 27 reviews. †
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