Who we are

Matthew Maxwell Scott

Matthew Maxwell Scott, Founder, Executive Director

Matthew has had a diverse career with insurers, claimant lawyers and others. He worked for ten years for the CBI and has also been a local councillor and a parliamentary candidate. He brings his understanding of membership organisations and his wide range of political and media contacts to bear to support ACSO’s mission.

Ben Welsh

Ben Welsh, Founder, Director

Ben is a specialist communications and reputation management consultant, focusing primarily on the insurance sector. Prior to this role, Ben spent 18 years in a variety of senior communications roles within several industries, including trade associations, utilities and financial services, the latter with Aviva Plc, where amongst other roles he was the Group Public Affairs Director, responsible for public affairs and public policy for Aviva. As well as insurance, Ben has worked for the European Community in Brussels; a sports public relations agency in Hong Kong and for the tobacco industry trade association in London.

Charles Layfield

Charles Layfield, Founder

Charles has occupied various leadership roles within legal and financial services businesses since 2006, including Pannone LLP, BGL Group and Minster Law. He now works with the Boards, Executive teams and investors across a portfolio of companies providing advisory services as a Chairman, Non-Executive Director, consultant and mentor. Charles has been/is an Approved Person by the SRA, FCA and is becoming a Chartered Director with the IoD. His particular focus is on leadership; strategy; corporate governance; culture & people development; political, regulatory & public affairs; and audit, risk & compliance.

Anna Layfield

Anna Layfield, Administrator

Anna has been a Director and Company Secretary for a business consultancy company since 2017 and also supports a number of businesses on company secretarial matters. She joined ACSO at the end of 2019 to provide key administrative and business support. Prior to this role, Anna enjoyed a career in education, working as a primary school teacher in Manchester for 22 years.

Crispin Passmore

Crispin Passmore, Strategic Advisor

Crispin launched his consultancy business at the start of 2019 after a long executive career in the legal market as a regulator and public policymaker. He works with a mix of legal businesses predominantly in the UK and US on strategic issues including regulatory and workforce issues. He also supports a significant number of regulators across the world who are seeking to modernise their approach to the legal market. He is an experienced non-executive and Board level adviser.

Amir Ali OBE, Senior Advisor

Amir Ali OBE, Senior Advisor

Amir is an immediate past chairman of the Civil Court Users Association, past president of The Institute of Paralegals and a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Credit Management. He sits on the law advisory boards of several universities, works with the Ministry of Justice on online dispute resolution and has almost 40 years’ experience in the UK’s legal and enforcement sectors. He was awarded an OBE in 2022 for ‘Services to Court Users and the Law.’

John Cuss, Senior Legal Policy Advisor

John Cuss, Senior Legal Policy Advisor

John is Head of Corporate Services and Strategic Partnerships at Hudgell Solicitors, where he oversees personal injury and is responsible for areas of the business including partnerships and qualitative delivery of legal services. John is a regular commentator on civil justice and is vice-chair of the Law Society Dispute Resolution Committee. John won the 2023 People in Business Award for Mentor of the Year for the Hull and East Yorkshire region.

Daniel Bates, Legal Policy Advisor

Daniel Bates, Legal Policy Advisor

Daniel is a serious injury solicitor at Minster Law, with more than a decade’s experience across the full range of personal injury case types, though now focused on motorcyclists with life-altering injuries. Daniel was seconded to ACSO as a trainee solicitor in 2020, before agreeing a permanent part-time advisory role in 2022 after his qualification. He brings his technical expertise, collaborative approach and legal network to support ACSO’s mission.