Defendant firm DAC Beachcroft has significantly expanded its Newcastle office with the hire of a team from one of its rivals.

The practice today announced the recruitment of the 11-strong team, including seven partners, from the casualty claims department of national firm DWF.

DWF, led by Rod Searl (pictured), acts for various insurers, with specific public sector and corporate expertise in personal injury, abuse and fraud.

The new arrivals will be based in Newcastle and work within DAC Beachcroft’s claims solutions group for clients on a local, regional, national and international level.

DAC Beachcroft managing partner David Pollitt said: ‘This is a terrific move all round and one that will bring significant benefits to our business in Newcastle and beyond.

‘We have an enviable reputation for making strategic team acquisitions like this work well for us and, specifically, for our clients and I fully expect this move to be no different.’

The other partners joining this summer are David Drewe, Andrea Ward, Sue Howes, Shaun O’Neill, and Nicola Hyam. Director Mark Douglas will also join as a partner, along with members of professional support staff.

Derek Adamson, DWF’s head of occupational health and casualty, said the firm will continue to have one of the industry’s largest teams in this field advising insurer clients including RSA, Zurich and QBE.

‘Our personal injury and wider insurance capability continues to develop across the UK and internationally in response to growing client demand for a more innovative approach to legal services,’ he added.

Meanwhile, DWF confirmed the acquisition over the weekend of niche insurance law firm Fox Hartley.

Fox Hartley’s three partners, Trevor Fox, Michael Hitchings and Peter Barnes, and all of its 13 Bristol-based staff, have now joined DWF.