This statement is made in accordance with Section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (‘the Act’) and constitutes our slavery and human trafficking statement. The firm’s financial year concludes on 30 June; therefore, this statement covers the period 1 July 2019 – 30 June 2020. This statement was approved by the Minster Law Board of Directors on 4 November 2020 and signed by our CEO, Shirley Woolham. A signed copy of this statement can be provided on request.
As a firm of solicitors, Minster Law remain conscious of our legal and regulatory responsibilities to act ethically, with integrity, in a way that upholds the constitutional principle of the rule of law and the proper administration of justice to inspire public trust and confidence in the profession. Against the backdrop of challenges facing all businesses to adjust to the unforeseen impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, we remain committed to taking steps to prevent slavery and human trafficking from arising within our organisation and supply chains.
Minster Law Ltd, founded in 2003, is a limited company and a subsidiary to BHL (UK) Holdings Limited. We provide legal services in England (registered number 4659625) and are authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (registered number 383018) and the Financial Conduct Authority.
Minster Law works with insurers and brokers to provide their customers with market leading motor related claims management and legal services, with a particular expertise in personal injury.
Minster Law Ltd are one of the UK’s largest personal injury specialists. We have specific expertise in motor and bike accidents, as well as specialists supporting in consumer claims, residential property disputes and employment law.
Regardless of the severity of personal injury, we have unrivalled expertise supporting all of our insurers and brokers’ customers. This includes specialisms in complex brain, spinal and amputee injuries as well as pioneering fast track operations and the evolution of digital servicing.
Within our business
We have continued to ensure that our colleagues are paid at least the UK National Living Wage. Within the last 12 months we have also conducted our annual role and salary benchmarking review.
To further enhance the support offering available to our colleagues, in the last 12 months we have launched our Wellbeing Programme. The aim of the Wellbeing Team is to provide advice, support and tips to colleagues to improve their mental and physical health whilst adapting to remote working and more generally.
It is hoped that this additional layer of support could also provide an alternative avenue for colleagues to access support on a range of issues should they feel the need to do so.
Our recruitment process is underpinned by our Recruitment, Selection and Referencing Policy along with its associated guidance note which are reflective of our commitment to the prevention of slavery and human trafficking.
All prospective colleagues continue to undergo various pre-employment checks to ensure that our approach to recruitment and selection complements our aim to combat slavery and human trafficking. These include but are not limited to verifying a prospective colleague’s right to work in the UK. In the last year we have redefined and enhanced the processes relating to some of these checks.
We have also enhanced our previous offering through the introduction of robust KPIs around our pre-employment checks.
Our zero-tolerance approach to slavery and human trafficking continues to be reflected in our company policies which reinforce our commitment to conducting business in an ethical, responsible and inclusive manner.
Key policies include our Recruitment and Selection Policy, Contract Approval and Monitoring Policy, Internal and External Equal Opportunities Policies, Anti Bribery and Corruption Policy, CSR Policy and Whistleblowing Policy.
Our policies are owned by an appropriate key stakeholder and reviewed annually by our Executive Management Team to ensure they remain up to date and fit for purpose. Approval following an annual review is obtained via our governance structure with the majority of the key policies being Board reserved ensuring appropriate visibility at the highest level.
Our colleagues can easily access our policies via our Learning Hub should they need to refer to them.
Supplier Due Diligence Process
Minster Law remain committed to seeking out opportunities to work with organisations who reflect our values and share our approach to conducting business in a fair, ethical, responsible and transparent way.
Our supplier network largely provides us with goods and services which enable us to service our clients.
As in previous years, our supplier due diligence process remains aligned to our opposition to slavery and human trafficking.
Agreements with suppliers continue to feature commitments relating to modern slavery and it is expected that organisations we work with will satisfy their obligations under the Act. To this end, we continue to have a contractual right to audit key suppliers and our external audit processes include examining compliance with the Act.
Over the last 12 months, we have finalised the development of our Enhanced Supplier Framework. Key improvements arising out of this activity include the adoption of a risk-based approach to supplier due diligence which enables us to ensure areas presenting the greatest risk are appropriately resourced. Additionally, due diligence activities are completed by subject matter experts in the relevant business area as it is recognised, they will be best placed to evaluate and take steps to mitigate any identified risks.
Minster Law has a defined and embedded risk management framework. The Corporate Risk Register for Minster Law includes monitoring and managing risks around new and existing partners and suppliers together with our legal and regulatory obligations.
Risk management activities in this area include the maintenance of a supplier audit plan.
All risks are owned, managed and monitored by a member of the Executive Team with reporting into our monthly Executive Risk Meeting.
We appreciate that a culture of compliance and knowledge are key to identifying and tackling modern slavery and human trafficking.
The E-Learning provided to our colleagues on this topic is intended to equip everyone with the practical tools they need to identify and report suspected instances via our internal reporting processes. This is provided to colleagues joining the business as well as in the form of mandatory E-Learning to existing colleagues at regular intervals.
In the last year, we have also expanded our training offering with the introduction of a Learning Hub. This includes resources on various topics allowing colleagues to enhance their knowledge.
We recognise that there may still opportunities to further enhance our training offering on this topic and will seek to explore this in future.
Minster Law monitor the effectiveness of our procedures by:
- Monitoring the annual review of our policies;
- Monitoring completion of mandatory Elearning delivered to colleagues;
- Monitoring completion of pre-employment checks;
- Monitoring completion of the supplier audit schedule.
These factors are monitored as part of the key control framework for each applicable business area.
Building on the steps Minster Law have taken to date, we have identified the following areas of focus for the next financial year:
- Considering whether any enhancements can be made to our current approaches to supplier auditing
- Considering whether we can extend our training offering