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Road traffic accident giant bought out by Compare the Market owner

Top-32 Minster Law agrees to acquisition after long-standing relationship

4 June 2013

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Top-32 Minster Law agrees to acquisition after long-standing relationship

Road traffic specialist Minster Law has been bought out by BGL group, the company behind Compare The Market, days after being licensed as an alternative business structure by the SRA.

The top-32 firm, which turns over more than £100m in annual revenue, has been working with BGL for the past seven years, providing legal processing services for BGL's motor and bike insurance claims.

"The acquisition of a successful law firm is an important and positive move for BGL and one that is key to our ongoing success," BGL chief executive Peter Winslow said. "We have been working very closely with Minster Law for some time and there are already clear synergies between the two companies."

Minster Law chairman Adrian Christmas, who stays on a non-executive chairman, said Minster would likely remain an independent division of BGL.

Talking to Solicitors Journal he said he had set up his firm as "a genuine Clementi model", whose  growth prospects should not be hindered by the current pressures brought on the market by portal changes and the Jackson reforms.

He said the agreement would  allow Minster Law to retain its independence, "while also allowing our people access to all of the strategic and corporate advantages available within BGL, including the group's financial strength and vast consumer experience."

Minster Law was set up in 2006 after Christmas, then sole owner, bought smaller York-based Corries Solicitors, set up by Bruce Corrie in 1997.

It is now one of the largest road traffic accident personal injury practices in the UK but also provides other private client services including conveyancing, will writing and employment.

The firm employs more than 800 people, including about 170 fee earners, 54 of whom are solicitors and the rest mostly legal executives.

Last year it handled more than 40,000 personal injury claims.

Under the BGL deal all Minster Law employees will be retained and Adrian Christmas will become non-executive chairman.

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