BBC Panorama Reports on Verisona Law Cases

A school that was placed in the spotlight by the BBC’s Panorama programme on child abuse cases this week has been publicly exposed for its lack of mandatory reporting and subsequent cover-ups. Research undertaken by the BBC’s Panorama for its programme entitled ‘After Saville: No More Secrets’ has revealed that seven child abusers worked at the Royal Alexandra and Albert School in Reigate, Surrey between the 1950s and 1980s. In one of the most detailed historical file reviews undertaken in recent years, Panorama uncovered documents held in the National Archives detailing an institutional cover-up going back decades. Verisona Law acts for a number of individuals who allege they were sexually abused whilst resident borders at Royal Alexandra and Albert School and subsequently failed by the organisation. Charles Derham, Head of the Child Abuse Team at Verisona Law believes that, had mandatory reporting legislation been in existence, then potentially hundreds of children would have been spared horrendous abuse by people in a position of trust and responsibility. ‘There can be a very simple, schematic approach to reporting abuse,’ he explains. ‘If you’re in a position of authority and have probable reason to believe a child is being abused, you should be obligated to report this.’ While statutory guidance has been issued urging professionals such as teachers, doctors and social workers to report suspected child abuse, as the law stands today it is not a criminal offence to fail to report it. ‘If clear and effective law was implemented it would make reporting a simple task,’ says Charles. ‘The prospect of mandatory reporting is not a new idea – it already exists in many countries such as Australia and Canada, as well as several US states including Florida.’ ‘One cannot help but wonder if mandatory reporting was in existence at Royal Alexandra and Albert School, would these individuals have evaded such horrific abuse? They certainly would not have to now face the legal battle we are engaged in to receive the justice they so deserve.’

We understand that it is not unusual for those who were subject to abuse to come forward later in life. If you or somebody you know were subject to abuse please do not hesitate to contact Charles Derham our specialist child abuse solicitor. We will treat any communications with the strictest of confidence.


Lisa has more than 20 years’ experience of dealing with Personal Injury matters ranging from road traffic accidents to workplace injury and liability. She offers a sympathetic and professional approach to her clients’ problems and advises on funding options (including insurance and Conditional Fee Agreements.)

Her extensive knowledge of the Civil Procedure Rules, skills in evidence gathering and analysis of liability and causation, and experience in risk assessment and settlement negotiation make her a valuable asset to clients and colleagues alike.

She is also a member of Verisona Law’s Historic Abuse Team and undertakes documentary analysis, work relating to case evidence and the development of legal arguments to secure successful settlements. She is fluent in German and Persian.

Lisa also has experience in Civil Litigation regarding Debt Recovery, Breach of Contract, and Insolvency Law.

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"I would like to express my profound heartfelt gratitude to Lisa Gafarov for all her hard work and understanding when representing me. She fought passionately for my case for two years.

Within this time, never once did I feel it was about the money for her. She was very considerate and dealt with many personal matters in a caring and professional way. It was a very sensitive case but she put in a lot of hard work and went the extra mile each time. Her wide range of expertise was indispensable during this difficult time. Because of this I trusted all her advice and as a result, this took a lot of pressure off of me.

She managed to reach a very amicable conclusion between the defendants and myself. You don’t know how much your passion impacts the lives of others. For this I am forever grateful. I would recommend your firm a hundred times over."
Anonymous, April 2019

Lisa studied ‘Contract Law, European Law and Employment Law’ as part of her degree in BA (Hons) Business Administration. She has also studied other business subjects, including accounting.

Having completed her degree, Lisa started work for Verisona Law in November 1999 in the Personal Injury department as a Trainee Litigation Clerk and since then has developed extensive skills in relation to personal injury litigation and case preparation.

  • Road traffic accidents
  • Accidents at work
  • Slip and trip claims
  • Occupier’s liability claims
  • Product Liability claims
  • Industrial disease claims
  • Work related upper limb disorder claims
  • Clinical negligence, including amputation claims
  • Cosmetic surgery claims
  • Abuse claims

"Thank you for all your much appreciated hard work. I will truly never forget your kindness towards me. Your patience, respect and understanding at all times was beyond words. The sincere compassion shown meant more to me than words could ever express. This firm will forever hold a special place in my heart."

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