Lesley Layton was working on a personal injury case when she convinced a colleague to fake signatures.

A Blackburn litigant solicitor has been struck off and fined after Allianz and BLM caught her falsifying signatures.

Lesley Layton, 36, was working for Lance Mason Solicitors when she convinced a colleague to copy a personal injury claimant’s signature.

When BLM questioned the validity of the signature, Allianz got it sent for a detailed forensic analysis. The tests proved that the signature had been forged using a photocopy of the claimant’s signature that had been on a court document. The case was then referred to the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).

Lance Mason Solicitors was ordered by the trial judge to pay £27,000 to cover Allianz’s costs.

When Layton later admitted to the SRA that she had forged the signatures on the documents, she was struck off the roll and made to pay £13,920 for costs.

Allianz fraud manager Nick Kelsall commented: “Not only has Lesley had to incur the financial repercussions for committing fraud, she now has to face the long term consequences of her actions. Unfortunately this individual abused her position of power and now she is paying the consequences. The result sends a clear message that Allianz will rigorously defend all types of fraud and will use the law to punish fraudsters in order to protect our customers.”