16 June 1997

The Lawyer

  • 'Dear Taffy' letter embarrasses firm

    17-Jun-1997

    Faversham practice Newfield & Co has run into trouble with the Law Society after a Welsh company was sent a reminder for payment from the firm which opened with the words: "Dear Taffy Bastard".The Office for the Supervision of Solicitors (OSS) has confirmed it has received an official complaint from caravan cleaning company Cara Mobile to which the letter was sent.A spokeswoman at the OSS said: "The Law Society is taking the complaint very seriously."

  • An emphasis on empathy

    17-Jun-1997

    Given the specialist nature of personal injury and medical negligence law, perhaps it is not surprising that most solicitors in the field turn to the capital for lead counsel.Most lawyers want counsel who can empathise with clients, many of whom have had their lives turned upside down. The general consensus is that there is no room for arrogance or pomposity in personal injury work, however technically brilliant the individual.Choosing counsel ...

  • Appeal Court beckons power pensioners in wake of ruling

    17-Jun-1997

    Lawyers acting for National Power and National Grid pensioners may appeal after last week's High Court ruling that the two privatised electricity companies were right to use pension fund surpluses for redundancy payments.The ruling by Judge Robert Walker, followed an appeal by National Grid against a decision by the pensions ombudsmanJulian Farrand that it should return £43m which it had taken from its pension scheme in 1993 to fund earlier redundancy ...

  • Appointment casts doubt on clerks' role

    17-Jun-1997

    A LEADING family set of chambers, One Garden Court, is to appoint a new chambers chief executive, making it the latest of a growing number of sets to overhaul its administrative structures.Last week's announcement has thrown into question the future role of the set's experienced and highly-regarded senior clerk, Peter Hoskins.It will also further unsettle senior clerks and practice managers in other chambers who are becoming increasingly alarmed about ...

  • Atlanta firm opens in London and swipes partner from rival

    17-Jun-1997

    Atlanta firm Paul Hastings Janofsky & Walker has opened its first European office in London - and poached the managing partner of a rival Atlanta firm's UK practice to head it.The firm says Keith Ott, who has joined it from Kilpatrick Stockton's London office, will build a practice made up of US and UK lawyers.PHJW is the second US firm in two weeks to announce a new London operation. Last week The Lawyer revealed that New York derivatives practice ...

  • Bar urged to change its non-practising barrister tag

    17-Jun-1997

    The Bar Council is being called on to scrap the label “non-practising barrister” and to replace it with the term “barrister without rights of audience”.The proposal is a key aim of the newly-formed Non-Practising Bar Association. Currently, only barristers who are exercising their rights of audience as independent practitioners are allowed to describe themselves as “barristers”.Barristers employed by in-house legal departments can call themselves “employed barristers”, ...

  • Brown & Wood hires Bryan Cave partner for fund work

    17-Jun-1997

    New York firm Brown & Wood has hired Bryan Cave partner Bill Morrison as part of a move to expand its London international financial services practice.Browns, which specialises in capital markets work, is soon to move into new 2000sqft City premises, and is in the process of developing its multinational practice. It is recruiting English and US lawyers for the office.Morrison, who joined it last week, described his move from Bryan Cave's London office as ...

  • Budget may kill conveyancers

    17-Jun-1997

    Struggling conveyancing solicitors could face ruin if rumours of a dramatic increase in housing stamp duty materialise in the Labour Government's first budget on 2 July.The Lawyer understands that Labour is considering increasing the current 1 per cent stamp duty to as high as 7 per cent.In the past, any rise in stamp duty has had the effect of slowing down house sales, spelling bad news for many conveyancing lawyers, who increasingly rely on a high volume ...

  • Building an early settlement

    17-Jun-1997

    In the bad old days, personal injury lawyers on both sides were reluctant to make the first settlement proposal in case it was seen as a sign of weakness. They would also make early settlement proposals that were so wide of the mark they were ignored, or would only enter settlement negotiations after their briefs had been delivered.Even today, in the vast majority of large personal injury and medical negligence claims, lawyers from both sides fail to ...

  • Call that democracy?

    17-Jun-1997

    One need look no further than the saga of the minimum salary rule for evidence of how out of touch Chancery Lane is with the profession.With the intention of listening, the Law Society invited the profession to express its views on the issue. It was well known that the number of responses received was greater than in any other recent consultation exercise, and 70 per cent of respondents to the consultation paper on the issue said the minimum salary rule should ...

  • Capital climbers

    17-Jun-1997

    A number of the leading juniors mentioned last year for personal injury and medical negligence have taken silk this year, but others previously singled out continue to provide excellent junior counsel. There are also plenty of new names grabbing the attention of lawyers, although some claim there is a shortage of quality counsel at middle junior level. The subjective views of leading lawyers provided the following pick list.Two sets in particular, 3 Serjeants' ...

  • Chadbournes loses Moscow manager to a US competitor

    17-Jun-1997

    Leading US firm Chadbourne & Parke has lost its managing partner in Moscow, Robert Langer, to a rival Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld.Langer, who had been in Russia for seven years with Chadbourne & Parke, said there was no overriding reason behind the move, but a "lot of little things contributed".He said he preferred the direction Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld was ...

  • Constitutional study group lures Pinsents senior partner

    17-Jun-1997

    The managing partner of Pinsent Curtis' London office, Graeme Brister, has been elected as a director of the Institute for Citizenship Studies, a body that promotes the constitutional rights of UK citizens.Brister said the issue of individual rights was becoming increasingly important in UK law. "This is why we want to be involved," he said. "For both selfish and altruistic reasons."Brister, who would welcome a UK Bill of Rights, said that as a senior member ...

  • Council counts the cost of education

    17-Jun-1997

    A legal battle over children's rights to education is now heading for the High Court. The case could result in new legal guidelines for local authorities who attempt to tighten purse strings by cutting back on education facilities for children who have fallen out of the system.Mr Justice Collins has given leave for a group of six children from Lambeth to bring an action to the High Court aimed at forcing their local education authority to provide them with a "suitable ...

  • County court orders Olswang partner to pay journalist's bill

    17-Jun-1997

    OLSWANG libel specialist Geraldine Proudler was ordered by a county court to pay a bill for £2,751 to a journalist who had issued a summons seeking payment for work commissioned by the partner.According to Sylvia Jones, former chief crime correspondent of the Daily Mirror, Proudler had commissioned her to carry out research for The Guardian in the run-up to its libel tussle with Tory MP Neil Hamilton and parliamentary lobbyist Ian Greer.Jones says she submitted ...

  • CPS reverses policy on chief prosecutors

    17-Jun-1997

    THE CROWN Prosecution Service (CPS) has performed a policy U-turn and decided to invite private practitioners to apply for the 42 new chief crown prosecutor (CCP) posts being created by the Labour Government.The news was broken to senior CPS prosecutors in an internal memo sent out last week by director of corporate services David Nooney. The memo also contradicted public statements by saying that redundancies from within the service were "a real possibility".The ...

  • Deaf Legal Access Group pulls a crowd

    17-Jun-1997

    MORE than 100 people attended the launch conference of the Deaf Legal Access Group in Leeds last Tuesday.The group, which now looks likely to become a national body, aims to improve legal services to deaf people.Its plans include the setting up of a register of deaf-friendly legal service providers, becoming a centre for information, campaigning on deaf issues, and facilitating deaf awareness training.Founder Jessica Penrose, of Leeds solicitors Harrison ...

  • Dentons' UK rail sell-off work puts Taiwan deal on right track

    17-Jun-1997

    Experience gained in UK rail privatisations has helped secure Denton Hall the job of advising one of two bidders for the world's largest ever Build Operate Transfer project - a $16bn, 345km high speed railway in Taiwan.Denton Hall has been appointed to advise a consortium, which is led by Taiwan's largest merchant bank, China Development Corporation, and includes Bechtel, acting as project manager, several leading Taiwanese construction companies and Japan's ...

  • Dibbs tops Edge & Ellison merger shortlist

    17-Jun-1997

    Dibb Lupton Alsop is emerging as the front-runner as merger partner for Birmingham firm Edge & Ellison.Dibbs is officially not commenting, but The Lawyer understands that the firm has made a strong offer and is confident of hearing a positive reply by the end of July.Meanwhile, Edge & Ellison senior partner Digby Jones has confirmed for the first time that his practice had been talking to a number of national firms as well as several based in London.

  • Don't knock our trademark

    17-Jun-1997

    A recent ruling in the Chancery Division is likely to cause concern to those who are on the receiving end of comparative or "knocking" advertising copy.The judge applied principles that are normally associated with defamation to his decision on whether or not to grant interlocutory relief in a pending trademark infringement and malicious falsehood action.The dispute involves two of the country's leading nursing publications, The Nursing Times ...

  • Fighting for competition

    17-Jun-1997

    A number of preliminary skirmishes have already taken place in a Chancery Division action in which athlete Paul Edwards is taking the British Athletic Federation and International Amateur Athletic Federation to the High Court over a four-year competition ban they have imposed on him. Edwards, who is represented by solicitors Janes, is seeking damages from the two federations for allegedly acting unlawfully and unfairly, in restraint of trade and in breach of the Anti-Doping ...

  • Financings

    17-Jun-1997

    Norton Rose acted for CIBC Wood Gundy, the Bank of New York and Banque Paribas on providing a £170m credit facility to Cable London to pay for the continuing build up of its cable network. Clifford Chance advised Cable London, which secured the loan with shares and assets.

  • Firm opens virtual campus

    17-Jun-1997

    EAST Anglian firm Mills & Reeve has launched what it calls a virtual university campus on the Web for its higher education clients.The web site depicts the campus of a university and invites clients to gain access to legal information by clicking the relevant department. It also has a debating chamber to allow visitors to exchange views.According to the firm, academic ...

  • First American flies in for property briefings

    17-Jun-1997

    Solicitors from Scotland, the City and major regional firms were briefed last week on insurance giant First American Title Insurance's plans to revamp the house purchasing and conveyancing process.Senior officials of the insurance giant flew in from Canada and the US last Wednesday to join Sir John Hannam, a fellow board member. Hannam, who is a former Tory MP and previous chair of the Government's conveyancing committee, and the officials, addressed 60 invited ...

  • Flotations

    17-Jun-1997

    Simmons & Simmons advised tobacco company Gallaher Group on its demerger from American Brands and related listing on the London Stock Exchange. It also acted as UK counsel for American Brands. Chadbourne & Parke advised on US law and Freshfields advised Morgan Stanley

  • Flotations

    17-Jun-1997

    Travers Smith Braithwaite advised SGB Group on its £112.6m flotation on the London Stock Exchange. Sponsor Kleinwort Benson was advised by Freshfields and SGB Group's parent construction company

  • Frims to be canvassed on green form boycott

    17-Jun-1997

    A Law Society survey being carried out this week will give the first concrete evidence on whether the 145 law firms lining up to take part in the Legal Aid Board's green form pilot project are heeding the society's advice to boycott it.The confidential questionnaire is designed to gauge the level of support from practitioners for the Law Society's stance against the proposed pilot to test the block contracting of green form advice.It asks firms ...

  • German lawyers' registration passes from ministry to Bars

    17-Jun-1997

    The German Federal Bar has won an important step in a long-standing battle with the Ministry of Justice to bring the registration of new lawyers under the control of local Bars.A resolution passing control from the Ministry of Justice to the local Bars was made at the general assembly of the German Federal Bar in May and the government has since accepted it in principle.If there are no unforeseen delays the necessary legislation could be heard in the next period ...

  • Good value in the provinces

    17-Jun-1997

    Many leading regional lawyers instruct junior counsel locally and are more than happy with the standard of service they receive - and the fees for local advocates are competitive.In the Midlands, the set at 5 Fountain Court in Birmingham has several popular junior barristers. Paul Bleasdale is often mentioned. "He is decisive, very good on his feet and in conference, and good with clients" is one comment. Satinder Hunjan also receives widespread ...

  • Goodbye CCT, but good riddance?

    17-Jun-1997

    When the Government announced the demise of Compulsory Competitive Tendering (CCT) and its replacement, Best Value, there was hardly a damp eye in the House.So why, within days of the announcements of the suspension of CCT, could voices be heard from these same quarters pleading that the new Government should not "throw out the baby with the bathwater".Local authorities had no regrets that they would no longer have to compete on ...

  • Greek office is Richards Butler's eighth abroad

    17-Jun-1997

    City firm Richards Butler has opened an office in Piraeus, Greece, to augment its strength in shipping.The office, its eighth overseas offshoot, will be headed by partner Duncan Francies, an experienced shipping lawyer. He will be supported by one assistant, Dorothy Tomazos.The office will be linked to London using a number of Microsoft packages that use ISDN to allow constant contact between offices.Graham Harris, a London-based shipping partner, ...

  • IBM launches voice recognition system

    17-Jun-1997

    IBM has unveiled a voice recognition package that it claims can recognise and keep pace with continuous patterns of speech.The company's ViaVoice software, which will be available in September this year, will compete with a similar Philips package, which was launched at the Solex exhibition earlier this month.According to IBM, the new system can allow users to speak naturally, at around 140 words-per-minute. In its current form, ...

  • In brief: City firm forms alliance with firm in Delhi

    17-Jun-1997

    City firm Rosenblatt has formed an association with an Indian firm in a rare move intended to improve business without increasing expense. Far East partner Neil Sampson said the deal was signed with Delhi firm Pasrich Kundra Bansal & Co last week. The association will allow the firms to share resources. Sampson said: "It is better for our clients if we work with a local firm which has local legal and ...

  • In brief: Discussion seminar on SIF funds shortfall

    17-Jun-1997

    A seminar to discuss how to deal with the Solicitors Indemnity Fund shortfall is being organised by the Law Society presidential election ticket of Phillip Sycamore, Michael Mathews and Robert Sayer. The seminar, to be held on 11 July at a London venue yet to be confirmed, will discuss what has led to a £454m shortfall in SIF funds and what the future holds. The options open to the profession will also be discussed with the organisers who are hoping to attract solicitors from ...

  • In brief: Enter the Chase Corporate Challenge

    17-Jun-1997

    There is still time for lawyers to enter teams for the 1997 Chase Corporate Challenge, which takes place on 23 June. The charity mini-marathon is sponsored by The Lawyer. Among the firms taking part are S J Berwin, Stephenson Harwood and Freshfields. So far no chambers have entered. For details ring: 0171 282 8037.

  • In brief: Environmental lawyer joins rival firm

    17-Jun-1997

    Leading environmental lawyer Charlie Hopkins has left Leigh Day & Co to join rival firm Bindman & Partners. Hopkins, who has joined Bindmans as a consultant, said he wanted to focus on "sharp-end" environmental actions. "Bindmans has given me a great deal of freedom in the work I want to develop," he said.

  • In brief: Firm makes two paralegals associates

    17-Jun-1997

    Shakespeares Solicitors' has appointed two paralegals - Steve Stevenson and Mike Radford - as associates to mark their seniority. Shakespeares' managing partner Andrew Argyle said the pair had made an outstanding contribution and he personally supported a change in Law Society regulations to allow paralegals to progress further and become partners. "If someone is making a valuable contribution there is no reason why they can't join the partnership," he said.

  • In brief: Nabarro's head of insurance goes to TG

    17-Jun-1997

    Nabarro Nathanson has lost its head of insurance, partner Jennifer Donohue, to Theodore Goddard, where she will also be head of insurance. Nabarros is restructuring its 14 departments, into just four, identifying certain core areas of practice. Donohue's area of non-contentious insurance, advising general corporate and Lloyd's insurers on innovative underwriting arrangements, formed part of the ...

  • In brief: Thanksgiving service for Lord Taylor

    17-Jun-1997

    A service of thanksgiving for the life of Lord Taylor of Gosforth will be held at St Paul's Cathedral at 5pm on Tuesday 15 July. Lord Taylor, who was Lord Chief Justice of England from 1992 to 1996, died late last April. The service will be open to all who wish to attend.

  • In brief: US firm's specialist joins Clifford Chance

    17-Jun-1997

    Commercial property securitisation specialist, Andrew Forryan (right) has rejoined Clifford Chance as a partner after a two -year stint at the London office of US firm Sidley & Austin. Forryan who was an associate at Sidley & Austin said: "Working as a partner at a firm like Clifford Chance will give me access to a wider market and a huge depth of resources." Head of Clifford Chance's commercial ...

  • In-house legal departments cost less, says BT lawyer

    17-Jun-1997

    Alan Whitfield, solicitor to BT, claims his legal department is up to 50 per cent cheaper than outside law firms and has called on other in-house legal heads to share figures on legal costs and performance.Whitfield told assembled in-house legal managers at EuroForum's In-House Counsel conference in London last week that he would like to benchmark his team's performance against other in-house legal departments."A small number of legal departments have ...

  • Irvine: power, but no time to use it?

    17-Jun-1997

    THE LORD Chancellor Lord Irvine of Lairg's appointment to seven of Labour's 19 cabinet committees is proof of just how key a figure he is in the new Labour administration.The interdepartmental cabinet committees are regarded by constitutional experts as the powerhouse of government - as opposed to the Cabinet which, many argue, merely rubber-stamps decisions which have already been made.As chair of the committee on Queen's Speeches and ...

  • Labour decimates PFI health work

    17-Jun-1997

    LINKLATERS & Paines is to sponsor a senior law lecturer to conduct a four-year research programme to examine the training needs of qualified lawyers.As part of the terms of his research fellowship, which is in professional legal education, Scott Slorach, the principal law lecturer at Nottingham Law School, will help Linklaters to develop its corporate training programme.Slorach ...

  • Law Society blasts Tory fast track to justice

    17-Jun-1997

    THE Law Society has attacked a controversial home office report that was commissioned by the Tory Government to devise ways of accelerating the justice system.The Review of Delay in the Criminal Justice System claimed a series of controversial proposals, which included ending the right of defendants charged with "either-way" offences to a jury trial, would save £55m a year.But the society's response to consultation on the proposals, which was drawn ...

  • Law training study secures funding from Linklaters

    17-Jun-1997

    Lawyers working on more than 120 health Private Finance Initiative (PFI) projects will have to stand down at the end of this month when health minister Alan Milburn announces a list of around a dozen schemes that will be allowed to proceed.Milburn has announced that his officials are reviewing the 43 hospital schemes to identify the ones most needed and most likely to sign within the next 18 months. He refused to say how many would be on the list, but commentators believe ...

  • Litigator's view

    17-Jun-1997

    The unanimous House of Lords judgment in the case of Co-operative Insurance Society Limited v Argyll Stores (Holdings) has steered the law of specific performance back onto its settled course after the Court of Appeal's venture into previously uncharted waters.The House of Lords has now confirmed that specific performance will not be granted to enforce a keep open covenant or any other obligation to carry on a business.The possibility remains that in cases ...

  • Medical evidence leads to murder conviction appeal

    17-Jun-1997

    R v Kathleen Hobson (1997)Court: CA (Rose LJ, Sedley LJ, Keene LJ) 23/5/97Summary: As to the safety of murder conviction in 1992 in the light of fresh evidence relating to battered women's syndrome suffered by the appellant before she killed her abusive partner.

  • Not actuary their fault

    17-Jun-1997

    Your lead story, which was headlined: "SIF shortfall now nearly £500m" (10 June 1997) reminded me of the slings and arrows that can befall even the most seasoned of election campaigners.Let us be clear as we enter another contested presidential election: the indemnity problem (an understatement, I know) is no more the fault of this year's officeholders than their predecessors.And it would be wrong if either protagonist was to make ...

  • Partners quit Dundas & Wilson

    17-Jun-1997

    Dundas & Wilson - the leading Edinburgh firm currently in talks with Arthur Andersen - has lost three partners to rival firms and is considering hiving off its seven-partner private client practice.The 50-partner commercial firm revealed it was talking to Andersens last month, but insists there will be no announcement for four to six weeks.The departures and the firm's ...

  • Personal injuries assessed

    17-Jun-1997

    The Law Lords are to review the assessment of personal injury damages. They have given leave for appeals in Page v Sheerness Steel Company, Wells v Wells, and Thomas v Brighton Health Authority. The cases concern damages for future losses and expense in personal injury litigation. They contest the multiplier to be applied to the annual amount assessed for future losses and expenses.

  • Personal injury awards

    17-Jun-1997

    Taylor v Sutton and Wandsworth Health Authority - QBD 12 May 1997Claimant: Samuel Taylor, nine yearsIncident: Medical negligenceInjuries: Claimant admitted to hospital after he stopped breathing at age of 11 weeks as result of acute bronchiolitis. Resuscitation was too late to save him from brain damage. Although his intellectual abilities are "relatively well preserved" he will be confined to a wheelchair for life. Claim brought on ...

  • Prime Minister puts faith in Lord Irvine

    17-Jun-1997

    Tony Blair's old head of chambers, Lord Irvine of Lairg, has emerged alongside Peter Mandelson as one of the new Prime Minister's key trusted lieutenants following his appointment to seven of Labour's 19 cabinet committees, three of which he will be chairing.By contrast, Irvine's predecessor as Lord Chancellor, Lord Mackay, sat on only three cabinet committees and chaired none of them.Perhaps most significantly, Lord Irvine is chairing the ...

  • Property

    17-Jun-1997

    Simmons & Simmons advised the receivers (DTZ Debenham Thorpe) of the IRA-bombed Docklands site South Quay Plaza Phase II on a £22.9m management contract with Laing Management to rebuild the development. Laing was advised in-house.

  • Providing the personal touch

    17-Jun-1997

    Although several lawyers in the regions say they go to London for senior counsel, there seems to be no shortage of compliments for local silks. In personal injury and medical negligence, good client contact is essential and many lawyers prefer to appoint local counsel to facilitate more face to face dealings. The following list of names are those mentioned by leading lawyers in the respective regions.The North West is well represented with top quality silks in ...

  • Rights success in Hong Kong

    17-Jun-1997

    THE Law Society of Hong Kong says it has won partial concessions in its bid to secure the protection of civil liberties after the colony's handover - but its new president has warned his members that they must continue to fight for more safeguards.Anthony Chow, the newly-elected president of the Law Society of Hong Kong, said the society has played an important role in shaping draft regulations which propose changes to the island's current public order laws.

  • Ruling fails to set address precedent

    17-Jun-1997

    One of the first judgments to tackle a dispute over the registering of Internet domain names has failed to set a precedent, according to a lawyer involved in the case.In the High Court last month, the Vice-Chancellor Sir Richard Scott refused to grant an injunction to prevent Pitman Publishing using the name "pitman.co.uk".A second company, Pitman Training, which used to be in the same group as Pitman Publishing, applied for ...

  • Slaughters prepares for lunch

    17-Jun-1997

    Slaughter and May is for the first time fully equipped to have its clients around for lunch after the opening of its new offices on 9 June.The building, at 4 Coleman Street in the City, which is next door to Slaughters' three other offices, is the new home for the firm's tax, property, pensions and employment departments. Their leases, on nearby 18 Coleman Street, have recently ...

  • Start ups

    17-Jun-1997

    Birmingham firm Putsmans advised German computer monitor repair and servicing company Teleplan in setting up a UK company in Telford and in finding property. Putsmans' partner Terry Lipscombe is company secretary of the start up Teleplan Computer Services.

  • Stephensons invests £2m in management package

    17-Jun-1997

    James Boxell reportsStephenson Harwood is ploughing £2m into the purchase of a firm-wide practice management system.It will spend half of the money replacing its existing front and back office computer systems with a single package, the Keystone Practice Management System, the rest will be spent on other hardware and on training.The new system, ...

  • Success lies in streamlining Law Society

    17-Jun-1997

    As we explore better ways for the solicitors' profession to run itself, we are compelled to confront a paradox. Solicitors expect (rightly) to have a growing say in the decisions which affect their profession and its future. But commercial pressures mean that fewer solicitors feel able to spare the time to take part in making those decisions, either nationally or locally.The problem is particularly acute at national level. Despite the controversies of recent ...

  • The costly curse of the shoddy conveyancer

    17-Jun-1997

    While only a quarter of solicitors offer conveyancing services, claims against them for poor work account for 55 per cent of claims to the Solicitors Indemnity Fund.Worse still, two thirds of the total value of SIF claims are paid out in relation to poor work by residential, commercial and property and mortgage solicitors. And with solicitors now facing an extra SIF bill of £454.5m following an over optimistic forecast by the fund, the future looks bleak.

  • The Lawyer Golf Challenge

    17-Jun-1997

    For all those budding Tigers (the golfer, that is) out there, The Lawyer, in association with recruitment consultants Hughes-Castell, invites you to put on those Rupert Bear trousers, choose your caddy and club carefully and enter the first ever Lawyer Golf Challenge.The Challenge will tee off with a number of regional play-offs which will take place during the summer and lead to a grand final which will take place on Friday 3 October at Woburn Golf ...

  • The Lawyer Inquiry: James Bateson

    17-Jun-1997

    What was your first job?Postman.What was your first ever salary as a lawyer?£70 per week, working for my father.What would you have done if you hadn't become a lawyer?Sports journalist.Which law could you live without?The Income and Corporation Taxes Act.What was your most embarrassing professional moment?Nothing ...

  • Treatment for negligence

    17-Jun-1997

    There has been a steady rise in the number and value of negligence awards against the medical profession recently. Although not yet reaching the heights of certain libel actions, they are becoming inflated and inconsistent - a situation that could damage healthcare, burden the taxpayer, give false hopes to plaintiffs and snowball as lawyers take advantage of an increasingly lucrative business.Only 10 years ago it was considered far too difficult to sue doctors. ...

  • UN backs international court

    17-Jun-1997

    KOFI Annan, the United Nations secretary general, has used the International Bar Association's (IBA) 50th anniversary celebrations as a platform to pledge his personal support for the creation of an international criminal court.Delivering the keynote speech at the celebrations in New York last week, Annan said he was confident a diplomatic conference in Italy next year, convened at the behest of the UN, would succeed in setting the rules for such a court.Annan ...