Abigail Scholefield, Senior Associate, Public Regulatory

Abigail Scholefield, Senior Associate, Public Regulatory, Fieldfisher

I am a senior associate specialising in public law and advising public sector clients on healthcare, education, regulatory and disciplinary matters.

I am currently working with the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse ('IICSA') which is investigating the extent to which public institutions may have failed to protect children from sexual abuse. My public inquiries and inquests work has also included working as the Assistant Solicitor to the Litvinenko Inquiry regarding the death of the Russian emigre.  I have also previously advised and represented Iraqi witnesses giving evidence to the Al Sweady Public Inquiry into British Armed Forces' involvement in the detention and deaths of Iraqis in 2004. 

I have also gained a broad experience in running a number of fitness to practise cases involving misconduct, performance and health concerns about healthcare professionals for healthcare regulatory bodies including the General Medical Council and Nursing & Midwifery Council.  I have advised on the merits of certain decisions to investigate, close, issue a warning or refer cases to the fitness to practise panel, and whether or not there is a realistic prospect of establishing that a practitioner’s fitness to practise is impaired.

I have developed a particular interest in Student Fitness to Practise and regularly deliver training to Higher Education Institutions on investigating Student Fitness to Practise matters and running fair hearings.

I've also advised the national regulator and inspector of childcare, children's services and schools on the merits of decisions to restrict childminders', childcare providers' and children's homes' registration and where decisions to suspend or cancel registration are challenged, I have defended appeals brought in the first tier tribunal.

I am a member of the Association of Regulatory & Disciplinary Lawyers and ProManchester.  I am based in our Manchester office and live in the Peak District.  In my spare time, I enjoy climbing, skiing, biking and running, followed by good food and wine.

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