20 March 1995

The Lawyer

  • A bonny buik for Sassenachs

    21-Mar-1995

    Solicitor Cameron Fyfe hae wreittin a buik fir the ordinary fowk of Scotland, which argues tha the "complicated, antiquated language" o' Scots law staps fowk from oonerstandin the legal process.Publication o Fyfe's buik, 'The Layman's Guide to Scotland's Law', coincides wi a lowse out be the chairman of the Law Commission Mr Justice Brooke on the "antique, obscure and impenetrable" state o' Sassenach law.The buik hae questions ...

  • A&O fishes for Boodles' head of IP

    21-Mar-1995

    ALLEN & Overy has poached the head of Boodle Hatfield's intellectual property department.Stephen Jones, a partner at Boodle Hatfield, joins Allen & Overy next month as a senior associate.Allen & Overy IP partner Catriona Smith says the firm approached Jones for the position which involves co-ordinating IP pharmaceutical matters. He will replace Alan White who retires ...

  • Alexander warns courts in near-crisis

    21-Mar-1995

    THE COURTS must only be used in the last resort if a looming crisis in the judicial system is to be averted, says Lord Alexander of Weedon QC.Speaking at a Council of Legal Education lecture in Gray's Inn, the chair of NatWest Group and a former Bar Council chairman, said alternative dispute resolution (ADR) was the key to securing access to justice for everybody.He said the current system had become cumbersome and expensive. "The position has degenerated ...

  • Allen & Overy conducts fraud probe for TI Group

    21-Mar-1995

    Allen & Overy is investigating allegations of fraud involving its corporate client, engineering and aerospace company TI Group.The claims arose in the US and appear to be backed by the US Government.Litigation partner Tim House and two assistants from the firm are being instructed by TI Group legal director Stephen Clarke to look into the matter.A TI Group spokesman ...

  • Bar students face 30 per cent fee hike

    21-Mar-1995

    FEES for students on this year's Bar School course are to rocket by 30 per cent.Around 1,200 students offered conditional places at the Bar School this autumn face a hike in fees to u5,200 from last year's figure of u3,980.Council of Legal Education secretary John Taylor puts the rise down to a substantial reduction in Inns of Court subsidies along with the cost of expanding the school so it can cope with the demand for places.But he stresses ...

  • Bermans' recruit builds up brewery business

    21-Mar-1995

    LANCASHIRE law firm Bermans has recruited licensing specialist Nigel Copeland to head up its new North West licensing and leisure department alongside existing partner David Gledhill.Copeland, previously with Copeland Lyons, is an established specialist in the licensing field. Anthony Lyons, senior partner at Copeland Lyons, will continue to operate the firm in the licensing field following Copeland's departure.David Gledhill, who already specialises in ...

  • Brennan voted in as chair of PI association

    21-Mar-1995

    LEADING personal injury barrister Daniel Brennan QC has been elected chair of the newly formed Personal Injuries Bar Association (PIBA).And his first major task will be to influence conditional fee arrangements due to come into force in the near future.At a well-attended meeting at Gray's Inn earlier this month around 200 barristers gathered to approve the new association's constitution. A motion calling for the PIBA committee to take urgent action ...

  • Burton's set swaps old offices for modern

    21-Mar-1995

    John Malpas reportsMICHAEL Burton QC's 2 Crown Office Row set has moved to new offices.But the set, now renamed Littleton Chambers, has not left the confines of the Temple.Instead it has moved into what it says is the first purpose-built set of chambers in the Temple for over 150 years.Practice manager David Douglas says the commercial law set, established in 1954, was bursting at the seams at its old home with ...

  • Butner wins Harpers libel action

    21-Mar-1995

    TOP divorce lawyer Paul Butner and society magazine Harpers and Queen have settled a libel action over an article which said he had been dropped as Princess Diana's legal adviser on matrimonial affairs because he "lacked the necessary competence and skills".In the High Court last week, Mr Justice Drake was told that Butner, partner in London firm Wright Son & Pepper, had accepted an undisclosed cash settlement.Counsel Roderick Dadak told the judge Butner ...

  • Caryn MacKenzie asks should solicitors be liable for costs?

    21-Mar-1995

    The latest issue on litigation costs is to suggest that law firms are liable to pay the other sides' costs if their client fails to pay the successful party's costs.The argument arises out of the old and little-known torts of maintenance and champetry. Maintenance makes it unlawful for a third party, who has no interest in the litigation, from stirring up or defending litigation. Champetry refines that and exists where there is a contingency arrangement. ...

  • Children stage mock trial for Chief Justice

    21-Mar-1995

    ASPIRING young advocates will get a chance to perform in front of Lord Chief Justice Taylor in the finals of the National Mock Trial Competition for schools this week.Sixteen schools are taking part in the competition organised by the Citizenship Foundation at Southwark Crown Court on Saturday.The competition, now in its fourth year, sees teams of 13 students playing the parts of barristers, witnesses, court clerks and jurors in courts presided ...

  • City lawyers give backing to Slaughters over Genco advice

    21-Mar-1995

    CITY lawyers are rallying round Slaughter and May, the Government's lawyers for the electricity generator (Genco) share sale, despite unanswered questions about what and when they knew about the Littlechild gaffe that led to a u3.5 billion share crash in the electricity sector.Lawyers have distanced Slaughters from the debacle but speculation still exists as to whether the firm ...

  • Civil service union creates in-house post

    21-Mar-1995

    THE CIVIL & Public Services Association is to set up an in-house legal department.The union, which has 125,000 members, is in the process of hiring a lawyer to oversee its legal work.According to union treasurer Keith Mills, two reasons dictated the move."You get a shorter line of contact if the person is in-house. It brings situations in as opposed to putting them out."He says although cost-saving was a factor in the decision to set up ...

  • Clarke set to farm out drafting

    21-Mar-1995

    PARLIAMENTARY Counsel may soon be out of a job and their role of drafting Government legislation handed over to private practice lawyers, if Chancellor of the Exchequer Kenneth Clarke has his way.Clarke made known his support for privatising their role when delivering a recent lecture for the cross-party think-tank European Policy Forum (EPF).The Treasury says Clarke is keen on the idea and has won informal support from fellow ministers, although he is not yet ...

  • Clifford Chance opens up in Prague

    21-Mar-1995

    CLIFFORD Chance is to open an office in Prague next month, bolstering its presence in Central Europe.Resident partner Andrew Matthews will head the office, which will be fully operational from 3 April. Matthews joined the firm on 1 February from McKenna & Co. While at McKennas, he helped establish a Prague and Moscow office for the firm.The office will be staffed by Clifford ...

  • Commercial Court Judges

    21-Mar-1995

    There are 10 Commercial Court judges, six of whom sit at any one time. Those judges who are not sitting in the Court are either out on circuit, in the Court of Appeal Civil Division or in the Queen's Bench Division.The quality of the judges is often commented on by City solicitors. Mr Justice Rix, former chair of COMBAR, is described as "terrific"."He puts in a copybook performance and gets a grip of the issues. He is also decisive - while some judges allow ...

  • Conflicts of interest prevent judges from dealing with Lloyd's litigation

    21-Mar-1995

    AROUND half the judges in the Commercial Court are unable to hear the Lloyd's litigation because they have been involved in some aspects of it while at the Bar, according to the court's head.Mr Justice Potter says he expects at least three judges at any one time to be trying the cases but this may be difficult to achieve in the current circumstances (see page 16).The Commercial Court may borrow a judge from the Court of Appeal next year if the situation ...

  • Corporate

    21-Mar-1995

    Porsche Cars Great Britain subsidiary Lamborghini Great Britain was advised by Pitmans in Reading on the agreement with Automobili Lamborghini, advised by McKenna & Co, to distribute Lamborghini cars throughout the UK.

  • Corporate

    21-Mar-1995

    Mirror Group's TV arm Mirror Television, advised by Lewis Silkin, has entered a deal with cable consortium CPP-1 Partners, advised by Wiggin & Co, to form a new national channel Live TV.

  • Couderts picks up ex-Lovells lawyer

    21-Mar-1995

    Coudert Brothers has hired an ex-Lovell White Durrant partner to head its funds practice. Alasdair Gordon has not got partnership status at the firm but, says Steven Beharrell, head of the London practice, he will be considered for partnership at a later date.A Lovells spokeswoman says Gordon left the firm in December "by mutual consent".Beharrell says Gordon had a disagreement with Lovells over the direction of his practice.At Couderts, he will "establish ...

  • Criminal law reform 'edged out'

    21-Mar-1995

    LAW Commission chair Mr Justice Brooke has called for the creation of a fast-track system of Parliamentary scrutiny for non-contentious reforms in criminal law.Unveiling the commission's annual report last week, Brooke said the introduction of the so-called Jellicoe procedure in Parliament has cleared the way for rapid adoption of the commission's bills in the civil law area.But he said criminal law reforms continued to lag behind, despite a rapprochement ...

  • Defining the cut-off point

    21-Mar-1995

    Roger Pearson

  • Elly calls on Turkey to release captives

    21-Mar-1995

    LAW Society President Charles Elly has urged the Turkish government to release two human rights lawyers "without delay" following their arrest in the Kurdish district of Diyarbakir.In an open letter to Turkish president Suleyman Demirel, Elly says that the arrests of Sinan Tanrikulu and Firat Anli, the latest in a series of actions against lawyers in the troubled Kurdistan region, has added to concern among UK lawyers that "the rule of law is in danger" in Turkey.

  • EVERSHEDS' choice of EMPLOYMENT Barristers

    21-Mar-1995

    Eversheds Jaques & Lewis uses employment barristers more than it used to. Says partner Helga Breen: "We do not use them for getting a second opinion. We tend to use them as a cheap alternative to solicitors or when we're incredibly busy."Employment law barristers "need a thorough grasp of the law as well as to be fully briefed in development in the law," she says, adding that they also ...

  • Flotations

    21-Mar-1995

    Vehicle hire company Hill Hire was advised by Addleshaws Sons & Latham on its u25.5m flotation

  • Flotations

    21-Mar-1995

    Pentex Oil was advised by Peterkins in Aberdeen on its u20m introduction to the Official List

  • Franchise bias sparks outrage

    21-Mar-1995

    LEGAL aid lawyers are furious at Lord Mackay's decision to introduce a two-tier criminal legal aid system while continuing to freeze civil legal aid.Law Society president Charles Elly joins the Legal Aid Practioners' Group in denouncing the new rates for April which reward franchised over non-franchised firms.They condemn the decision to only increase the legal aid qualifying rates in line with inflation in the light of deep cuts in the qualifying limits ...

  • Government set to review 'living will' legislation

    21-Mar-1995

    THE GOVERNMENT is to review the law surrounding the status of 'living wills', under an initiative announced by the Lord Chancellor last week.The Lord Chancellor's Department will lead an intergovernmental working group which will include the Department of Health, Department of Social Security, Home Office, Treasury and Welsh Office.The British Medical Association, which is conducting its own review on the subject, welcomed the Lord Chancellor's ...

  • Hill Taylor in Hong Kong split

    21-Mar-1995

    LONDON law firm Hill Taylor Dickinson has split with Hong Kong associated firm Hampton, Winter and Glynn after a five-year link.The London firm is now setting up a separate office in the colony with the Hong Kong firm's four-lawyer shipping department.The split came when Hampton, Winter reviewed its business strategy, according to Hill Taylor chair John Pople."They were basically going for a rethink of their future business and restructuring ...

  • In brief: British Council relaunches Euro scheme

    21-Mar-1995

    The British Council's European Lawyers scheme is being relaunched next week. For the first time in its 31-year history the scheme is being run in conjunction with the College of Law. The scheme takes place each year in London and Edinburgh and offers young European legal practitioners the chance to spend six months getting to know the jurisdictions in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

  • In brief: Conditional fees to go to Parliament

    21-Mar-1995

    Conditional fee regulations are due to be put before Parliament by Lord Mackay imminently, according to the Lord Chancellor's Department. The Law Society is also gearing up for the arrival of the long awaited "no win no fee" rules and is putting the final touches to a model agreement for solicitors and clients which it hopes will be widely adopted by the profession. David Hartley, of the legal practice executive, says he expects conditional fees to be up and running by late May ...

  • In brief: Denton Hall appoints Kay for PR manager

    21-Mar-1995

    City firm Denton Hall has appointed Lesley Kay as its public relations manager. Kay, formerly of the Finance & Leasing Association, will be responsible for raising the firm's media profile and getting public relations initiatives off the ground.

  • In brief: Dismore heads to rival Russell Jones

    21-Mar-1995

    Andrew Dismore, litigation partner at Robin Thompson & Partners, best known for his work on the successful Court of Appeal challenge to the Government's Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme, is to join rival firm Russell Jones & Walker in May. Dismore has a strong record in the personal injuries field for trade unions and their members. Dismore says: "I have been unhappy for some time about the direction in which my firm was moving. I am looking forward to new challenges at Russell ...

  • In brief: McGowan moves to Titmuss as partner

    21-Mar-1995

    Bird & Bird's head of local government, Graham McGowan, is leaving the firm to become head of public sector at Titmuss Sainer Dechert. His move comes as Titmuss builds up its public sector practice. McGowan, who will join as a partner, says his background and Titmuss' established practice will build a "formidable ...

  • In brief: Nolan fronts Lovell/Guardian awards

    21-Mar-1995

    Sleaze inquiry chair Lord Nolan attended the Lovell White Durrant/Guardian International Awards for Students prize-giving ceremony at the Savoy Hotel on Friday 10 March. Winner of the u5,000 first prize for her essay on parliamentary lobbying was London University law student Anne Outram-Halstead. Commenting on his inquiry into standards in public life, Lord Nolan said he was struck by the depth of public concern about the issue. "I believe we must respond to the sheer scale of public ...

  • In brief: Survey investigates solicitors' attitudes

    21-Mar-1995

    Training and career consultants Lawyers in Mind is putting together a major survey on the attitudes of solicitors in private practice. It will ask lawyers about their feelings about their work, towards clients and what affects their morale and motivation. Anyone wishing to complete the survey can contact Stella Abrahams on 0171 583 0283.

  • In brief: Vaudreys boosts insurance litigation side

    21-Mar-1995

    Manchester-based Vaudrey Osborne & Mellor has increased its insurance litigation department with two appointments and a promotion. Deborah Mury (left) has joined the firm from Davies Arnold Cooper and will specialise in motor claims and Philip Andrews (right), formerly of Russell Jones & Walker, will concentrate on industrial disease claims. They join Ian Jones (centre), who becomes an associate and who specialises in commercial transport and industrial disease claims.

  • Labour condemns LCD over 'chronic complacency' on information highway

    21-Mar-1995

    THE LORD Chancellor's Department is guilty of "chronic complacency" over the future impact the information superhighway may have on UK law, says Labour.Concern emerged after a written answer to a Parliamentary question tabled by Paul Boateng MP, Labour's legal affairs spokesman, to LCD Parliamentary secretary John Taylor MP.Taylor replied that "no officials in my department are currently involved in research into these issues. I have no immediate plans ...

  • Litigation Disciplinary Tribunals 21/03/95

    21-Mar-1995

    JONATHAN PAUL MARSHALL, 33, admitted 1984, partner at material time in Godlove Pearlman, Leeds, struck off and ordered to pay u4,224 costs. Allegations substantiated that he dishonestly misappropriated client money, breached accounting rules by withdrawing client money for purposes not permitted, failed to pay money received on behalf of client into client account and breached duty of good faith to his partners. Tribunal told Marshall used client ...

  • Litigation Recent Decisions 21/03/05

    21-Mar-1995

    Undue influence on guarantor .Midland Bank v Serter & Another (1995). (CA (Glidewell LJ, Pill LJ, Aldous LJ) 2/3/95)Summary: Undue influence on wife/guarantor not to be imputed to lending bank unless solicitor advising her is instructed by the bank.Wife's appeal against order for possession of the matrimonial home which she had jointly charged in company with her husband to enable him to continue membership at Lloyd's. She had ...

  • Litigation Writs 21/03/95

    21-Mar-1995

    The niece of a man who died in March 1991 faces High Court action to make her repay over u49,000. David Thorp, personal representative of the late Robert Jones, has issued a writ against Mr Jones' niece, Joan Jones of Caernarfon, and Elizabeth Ellis of Bethel. Ms Jones became her uncle's attorney before his death on 15 March 1991, and obtained the passbook to his account at the Halifax Building Society in Bangor, according to the writ. It ...

  • London salaries upturn

    21-Mar-1995

    WEST End and City law firms have reported significant increases in their wage awards in a new legal salary survey.Forty per cent of London firms approached in the 1995 Michael Page Legal survey said they awarded staff wage rises of between six and ten per cent last year. In 1993 16 per cent handed out similar rises.The survey, based on responses to 500 questionnaires sent to firms countrywide, is cited by the recruitment company as evidence of the industry climbing ...

  • Lovells acts worldwide

    21-Mar-1995

    CITY firm Lovell White Durrant has just finished a major company flotation involving due diligence work in no less than 31 countries.Up to 50 of Lovells' lawyers took part in the deal, and the firm worked closely with other firms around the world.Masterminded from Lovell's London offices, and the Tenneco in-house lawyers in the US, the firm also pulled in its Tokyo, Beijing, Prague and Hong Kong offices.The job involved seven months working ...

  • Media law expert joins up with Tarlo Lyons

    21-Mar-1995

    ENTERTAINMENT law specialist Stanley Munson has joined Tarlo Lyons following the merger of his old firm with Davenport Lyons.Munson was a partner in the Wright Webb Syrett company commercial department which did not follow the litigation team to Davenport Lyons in the merger earlier this month.At the time, Davenport Lyons said it had only been interested in the litigation ...

  • Mills & Reeve tracks down City recruits

    21-Mar-1995

    THREE City property lawyers have moved to East Anglia to help Mills & Reeve win more City work.Penny Hubbard, a former Macfarlanes partner, is the most senior of the new recruits to join the Mills & Reeve Cambridge commercial property department headed by Duncan Ogilvy.The firm has also ...

  • Nabarros TKB merger on cards

    21-Mar-1995

    A merger between Nabarro Nathanson and Turner Kenneth Brown creating a new top ten firm is now a near certainty after heads of agreement between the partnerships were signed last Friday.Senior partners in both camps say prospects for completing the deal are very positive and a flexible deadline set for around 1 May, when their new financial years start, should be met.It will bring ...

  • Plymouth's free student unit notches up successes

    21-Mar-1995

    STUDENTS at the University of Plymouth's Free Representation Unit estimate they have won u320,000 for clients during its first year of operation.The unit, the third university-based FRU established in England, handled 350 cases during the year, winning a top award of u21,000 for an out-of-tribunal settlement in an unfair dismissal and sexual discrimination case.Several successful claims against the Ministry of Defence in tribunal cases added to the total.

  • Property

    21-Mar-1995

    Conran Holdings, advised by Forsyte Saunders Kerman, has entered an agreement with the private landlords to convert the 50,000sq ft Grade II listed Bluebird Garage Building in the King's Road, London SW3, to a restaurant and food retail operation. The landlords are advised by Harbottle & Lewis.

  • Rival recruiters in row over documents

    21-Mar-1995

    THE LONDON office of legal recruitment agency Reuter Simkin has successfully fought a legal action for the return of documents against an ex-employee and the rival agency which poached her.Reuter Simkin may also pursue the defendants, Daniels Bates, for damages.Jane Bowtell, Reuter Simkin director of legal recruitment, says: "We have had affidavits back admitting that information was taken on candidates and jobs. There are still some areas we are looking to clarify ...

  • RUC arrest appeal

    21-Mar-1995

    The Law Lords are to decide soon whether to allow an application for leave for Gerard O'Hara, who was arrested by the RUC in December 1985 under the 1984 Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act to appeal against Northern Ireland High and Appeal Court decisions rejecting his claims for damages for false imprisonment on the basis of unlawful arrest.

  • SJ Berwin acts for bondholders in bid to recover u100m Barings losses

    21-Mar-1995

    SJ Berwin & Co is acting for an action group of bondholders who are considering legal action to recover money lost through the collapse of Barings Plc, the shell holding company of the merchant banking businesses bought by Dutch group ING.David Harrel, senior partner and head of litigation, is heading a four-lawyer team with litigation partner and advocate Richard Slowe. Their aim is to recover ...

  • Strong US presence at European conferences

    21-Mar-1995

    AMERICA'S legal heavyweights of the future are among the delegates to a major series of British Council conferences.The European Series, which ends this week in Berlin, has given international delegates a choice of three main aspects of EU development. The conferences are headed 'European Union civil servants', 'Perspectives on Europe' and 'New members'.The Perspectives conference aims to supply a hand-picked group of US policy-makers ...

  • The Lawyer Inquiry: Kevin Feeney

    21-Mar-1995

    Kevin Feeney is a trainee solicitor at Linklaters & Paines. Born in Newry, Co Down, Northern Ireland, in 1964, he now lives in London.What was your first job?A tea boy on a reservoir construction project in Ireland.What was your first ever salary as a lawyer?u17,500.What would you have done if you hadn't become ...

  • Top results in insolvency examinations

    21-Mar-1995

    Solicitors taking the exams to become insolvency practitioners have done better than ever before by achieving a near-50 per cent pass rate and performing better than the accountants.Thirteen solicitors sat the Joint Insolvency Examination Board, out of 350 candidates, who were mainly accountants.Six of the solicitors passed, two were referred in only one subject, and five failed.James Lingard, consultant at

  • UK partner starts action on German cash scandal

    21-Mar-1995

    LONDON solicitor David Greene is at the centre of a legal campaign by English and German creditors to secure over DM600 million (u240 million) from disgraced German investment adviser and alleged fraudster Jurgen Harksen.Greene, partner of London firm Edwin Coe, worked with South African lawyers in Cape Town to secure a rare Mareva injunction and ex parte sequestration order against Harksen, ...

  • Vizards sets up City base

    21-Mar-1995

    Vizards, the Holborn-based London insurance and commercial firm, is opening a City office for the first time in its 200 year history.The move follows demand from its institutional clients and Lloyd's syndicates who want the firm's insurance lawyers to be closer to hand in a self-sufficient City team.The new City office opens with six lawyers and a staff of 12 on 27 March. Partners Robert Harrison and Michael Mitchell will lead the team.Harrison ...

  • WHAT THE COURTS DO

    21-Mar-1995

    Shipping disputes concerning charter-parties and bills of lading are the main types of work of the court but it also deals with disputes in insurance and reinsurance, banking and international sales of goods. More general commercial disputes such as agency and distributorship contracts and joint trading ventures also fall within the Court's ambit as does judicial control of arbitration.Commercial judges have had substantial experience of commercial litigation and arbitration ...

  • When packages turn out less than perfect

    21-Mar-1995

    Fennell Betson

  • Who says that words are cheap?

    21-Mar-1995

    Roger Pearson

  • Woolf's reforms fail to tackle funding and efficiency issues, says survey

    21-Mar-1995

    LORD Woolf's draft proposals for reform of the civil justice system are "superficially attractive" but do not go far enough to cure the underlying problems of under-funding and inefficiency, say clients surveyed by City firm Simmons & Simmons.Based on the views of its corporate clients, the firm is calling on Lord Woolf to professionalise his proposed procedural judges by creating a new class of highly-trained court officials capable of expediting cases.Lord ...