27 July 1998

The Lawyer

  • African trek for hospice funds

    28-Jul-1998

    Are you reasonably fit, adventurous and want to help local children who are terminally ill?The Butterwick Children's Hospice is organising a "Walk on the Wild Side". This is an opportunity to scale the highest mountain in Africa and raise much-needed funds for the hospice. The event includes an 11-day trip to Mount Kilimanjaro and involves an African trek.Taking place in September 1999, places are limited and cost £2,000 per ...

  • And the education debate rages on

    28-Jul-1998

    Re: Anja Siebel and Claire Jones' letters (The Lawyer, 30 June).I seem to have opened a can of worms with my letter of 9 June. Firstly, I was not aware that my letter was singling out mature students. This would be rather stupid, as I am a 42-year-old mature student myself.Further, Ruskin College, Oxford, is not part of the Oxford University establishment but the renowned trade union college that only takes mature students from ...

  • Apil warns Govt over 'flawed' pre-action protocols scheme

    28-Jul-1998

    THE GOVERNMENT is pressing ahead with plans to introduce pre-action protocols to encourage the early settlement of personal injury claims, despite solicitors' warnings that the project is flawed.Last week Geoff Hoon, the parliamentary secretary at the Lord Chancellor's Department (LCD), unveiled two draft pre-action protocols for personal injury and medical negligence claims.The protocols set out time limits for the disclosure of documents and communications ...

  • Appeal against break clauses

    28-Jul-1998

    A High Court ruling that notices given under break clauses in respect of two leased properties in Northampton were valid, is to be challenged in the Court of Appeal. The case will centre on the status of successors to tenants when it comes to using break clauses. In May last year, Mr Justice Rattee ruled in the case of Lemmerbell and anor v Britannia Las Direct that the notices given in respect of property in Northampton were valid, despite arguments from the landlords ...

  • Arbitration ace ups stumps for 3 Verulam Buildings

    28-Jul-1998

    Elizabeth Birch, architect of the recently formed arbitration service, Arbitration for Commerce and Industry (ACI), has defected from 20 Essex Street to rival commercial set 3 Verulam Buildings.Birch, who moves set on 3 August after 18 years at 34-tenant 20 Essex Street, said she wanted to expand her ACI work in banking, insurance and financial services, in line with specialisations at 48-tenant 3 Verulam Buildings.Her new set includes ACI members John Jarvis ...

  • Ashursts balances PFI deal by avoiding banks

    28-Jul-1998

    Ashurst Morris Crisp's head of projects Mark Elsey (right), led a team advising UK Detention Services (UKDS), on avoiding bank financing for the construction and maintenance under the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) of a £55m prison at Agecroft in Salford.The deal is the first major PFI infrastructure deal not to bring in bank financiers, who need their own set of lawyers and legal ...

  • Bar sees standard bearers in two years

    28-Jul-1998

    The Bar Council could introduce a kite mark for chambers with good practice management systems within the next two years.Dan Brennan QC, vice-chairman of the Bar Council, told the Institute of Barristers' Clerks (IBC) conference the quality standard might be introduced in response to the Government's proposals for legal aid block contracting.He said the Bar wanted to enter into block contracts directly with the Legal Aid Board (LAB) rather than relying ...

  • Barristers' clerks set conference pace

    28-Jul-1998

    In a self-conscious attempt to rubbish the image of clerks as "old fashioned", the Institute of Barristers' Clerks (IBC) arranged to have the morning session of its first annual conference beamed live to video conferencing facilities in Manchester and the Bar Council's video conferencing suite in Chancery Lane. The plan was, very nearly, a great success.The delegates in Manchester and Chancery Lane just about saw and heard everything that ...

  • Bingham calls for new criminal code

    28-Jul-1998

    The Lord Chief Justice, Lord Bingham, has called on the Government to introduce a new criminal code to deal with "the present chaotic system of criminal law".Speaking at the same Mansion House dinner as Lord Irvine (see above story), Lord Bingham said that criminal law was "incoherent and inconsistent and littered with distinctions which had no basis in reason".He added that "irrational distinctions led to injustices".He argued that a code would bring ...

  • Birmingham unfazed by Ansbacher pull-out. edited by Robert Lindsay

    28-Jul-1998

    Birmingham's corporate lawyers say the departure of the corporate finance arm of merchant bank Henry Ansbacher from the city is a "sad day for Birmingham".But they claim not to be worried about loss of work since much of the service merchant banks once provided in the city is now handled by the big five accountancy firms.Ansbacher, which counts football clubs Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United among its clients, has become the latest banker to pull ...

  • Booklet of the week

    28-Jul-1998

    Toronto Special Events & Entertainment Programme, by the American Bar Association.Essential reading for all those lawyers who are flying out to the ABA conference this week. Includes details of a visit to a wild flower farm, an ecumenical prayer breakfast and a bird-watching trip.

  • Camerons hits profits target

    28-Jul-1998

    Cameron McKenna is expecting average profits per partner of £250,000 in its first full year after merger - within the target it has set itself.The previous year, the figure for Cameron Markby Hewitt was about £225,000 and for McKenna & Co £253,000, but managing partner Robert Derry-Evans said the slight drop in profits was well within what the firm had allowed for the merger costs.However, the new firm's revenue was about £102.5m ...

  • City assistants beat inflation

    28-Jul-1998

    ASSISTANT solicitors in the City are enjoying average pay increases of four times the rate of inflation, according to a survey conducted by recruiters Michael Page Legal, in conjunction with The Lawyer.The survey, of the top 200 firms in the UK, shows that solicitors are taking advantage of a seller's market to receive average pay rises of between 10 and 15 per cent.In the most profitable City firms they are getting rises of as much as 20 per cent.

  • City law society opens door to foreign lawyers

    28-Jul-1998

    Foreign lawyers working in the City are to be allowed to become members of the City of London law society.The number of US and European lawyers working in the City is now so great the move could boost the society's membership by a third to more than 3,500.It will also give the society additional weight within the Law Society of England and Wales, which currently restricts membership to those it registers as foreign lawyers.City of London Law ...

  • City sounds SIF death knell

    28-Jul-1998

    THE SOLICITORS' Indemnity Fund (SIF) looked doomed last week after the influential City of London Law Society (CLLS) joined the November Group of commercial firms in demanding it be scrapped.In its official response to the Law Society's four-month consultation on SIF, the CLLS, which boasts 2,500 members, says allowing firms to insure on the open market "would be far better than a continuation, however upgraded, of the wholly discredited SIF".The call ...

  • Cleared ex-B&C director slams Treasury Solicitors and DTI

    28-Jul-1998

    The Treasury Solicitor's department has come under fire for its handling of disqualification proceedings it brought against John Gunn, the former chairman of collapsed company British & Commonwealth (B&C).Gunn was last month cleared in court of any wrongdoing and is now seeking hundreds of thousands of pounds of costs from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).He has publicly criticised the DTI both for trying to disqualify him and for taking so long ...

  • Comment - Hawkish City regulators swoop on the wrong prey

    28-Jul-1998

    It is easy to attack City regulators and their hard-pressed in-house lawyers. When big "irregularities" which could involve fraud emerge in companies, they face a stark choice - throw the book at those involved and spend hundreds of thousands of pounds trying to secure punishment, or publicly slap them on the wrists and leave well alone.The first option can result in accusations of wasting taxpayer's money for the sake of a vendetta. But anything ...

  • Comment and Analysis: Two plus two makes five at Cameron McKenna?

    28-Jul-1998

    One year after the merger and there have been no major ructions, but revenue is not exactly flooding in, reports Robert Lindsay. "And this is our new staff dining room," enthuses Robert Derry-Evans, Cameron Mckenna's managing partner. "People love it. We've put a glass roof on it."At first Derry-Evans' pride in a new dining room seems rather strange. A year after his firm, McKenna & Co, merged with Cameron Markby Hewitt, should he not be more concerned with ...

  • Comment and Analysis:Column. The legal profession must not be allowed to lose its way

    28-Jul-1998

    Consumer campaigner Marlene Winfield says law schools could boost public confidence by exposing students to the real world. Marlene Winfield is senior policy officer at the National Consumer Council. I am delighted to have this opportunity to speak with a consumer voice to readers of The Lawyer.I begin with a fundamental question: is the law still a profession or are professional obligations taking a back seat to income generation?I ask partly because increasingly ...

  • Counsellor granted challenge

    28-Jul-1998

    Former Portsmouth councillor Terence Gregory, who was removed from office following allegations relating to unfair property dealings but who was later cleared of those allegations, has won the right to continue with a legal battle for the right to sue the council over the impact the matter had on his reputation. The Lawyer, 14 July, reported his application to the House of Lords for consent to challenge earlier court rulings striking out his claim. Now Lords Slynn, ...

  • County court: the conspiracy goes on

    28-Jul-1998

    Your item, "Open justice? Not in the county court" (The Lawyer, 14 July), was marred by one minor inaccuracy. The illustrative photograph is clearly of a magistrates' court, not a county court, with the advocate talking to a lay bench. Not a district judge in sight! Are photographs of county courts forbidden? Yet more secrecy?Nicholas W Jones, Eversheds

  • English law repo market under threat

    28-Jul-1998

    A looming rift between two capital markets regulators is threatening the position of London as the centre for resolving disputes in repo transactions.The row concerns the standard contract used to govern repo market deals.The International Securities Market Association (ISMA), with some 770 corporate members in 51 countries, believes that its own six-year-old master agreement - known as the Global Master Repurchase Agreement - is already regarded universally ...

  • Financing

    28-Jul-1998

    John Forrester (right) and Ian Gaunt of Sinclair Roche & Temperley advised a group of lenders including lead arranger the Chase Manhattan Bank in a $425m financing facility for Stena Line

  • Financing

    28-Jul-1998

    Ian Clark of White & Case advised petroleum products distributor Dor Energy on its £50m offering on the Tel Aviv and London Stock Exchanges. Ashurst Morris Crisp advised lead underwriter BT Alex Brown. Israeli firms Goldfarb

  • Florida court may quiz partners over perjury claims

    28-Jul-1998

    TWO City partners may have to appear before a Florida court to respond to allegations that they lied in affidavits.Guy Hardaker, of Holman Fenwick & Willan, and Patrick Sherrington, of Lovell White Durrant, are key witnesses of oil giant Exxon in its legal battle with ex-Hong Kong barrister Michael Ford, who claims the company ruined his career.Earlier this month Magistrate Judge Dube, of Florida's southern district court, ordered an evidentiary hearing ...

  • Flotation

    28-Jul-1998

    John Ellard of Linklaters advised Coca-Cola Beverages (CCB) on its £1.7bn flotation on the London Stock Exchange. Richard Cranfield of Allen & Overy advised sponsor Warburg Dillon Read. Ashurst Morris Crisp advised the directors ...

  • Flotation

    28-Jul-1998

    Mark Noble of Eversheds acted for Policy Master on its £21m flotation on the Alternative Investment Market. Fabrizio Carpanini and William Sharpe of Berwin Leighton advised shareholder Gresham Trust and Dibb Lupton Alsop advised sponsor Williams de Broe.

  • Focus: Art in the Office The art of legal practice

    28-Jul-1998

    As more lawyers jazz up the office and wow their clients with artwork, Linda Tsang investigates the buying game. Linda Tsang is a freelance journalist. Visitors to the art gallery of Holborn firm Collyer-Bristow will be met this month by a dancing nude woman and a large chicken. Fowl Play, a picture by Claire Burbridge, is just one of the sights which will greet clients - and in terms of capturing client interest it certainly beats the usual water cooler and reception desk.

  • Focus: Bristol Mercantile Court. Region courts mercantile success

    28-Jul-1998

    In 1994 Bristol won its own mercantile court. As Nigel Puddicombe explains, the move has boosted the local legal scene. Nigel Puddicombe is a commercial litigation partner at Cartwrights in Bristol. When lawyers in the West of England began lobbying for their own regionally-based mercantile court in the 1970s and 1980s, there was plenty of opposition from those who believed there would be insufficient work for such a court. It was pointed out, in particular, that the long-established ...

  • Focus: Television justice. Shortfalls of a TV plea

    28-Jul-1998

    Vera Baird asks whether Clear My Name can be more than entertainment. Vera Baird is a criminal barrister at 14 Tooks Court.That the team who made Channel 4's Trial and Error sought to correct miscarriages of justice is beyond question.The series highlighted the cases of Sheila Bowler, released from a life sentence for the murder of an aunt who probably died of natural causes, and Danny McNamee, the first case referred to the Court of Appeal by the Criminal Cases Review ...

  • Forsters puts its faith in Norwel for August launch. By Elizabeth Davidson

    28-Jul-1998

    NEW commercial firm Forsters is celebrating the installation of a practice management system in time for its 1 August launch - just six weeks after the system was first commissioned.The 60-lawyer practice - created by 11 Frere Cholmeley Bischoff partners who decided not to take part in Freres' merger with Eversheds ...

  • Forsytes consigned to history

    28-Jul-1998

    WEST END firm Forsyte Saunders Kerman will split in September with its 11-partner property department going to Lawrence Graham and six partners going to Holborn insurance litigation practice Edward Lewis.The 19-partner Forstyes has shrunk from 30 partners since it formed after the merger of Forsyte Kerman with Saunders Sobell Leigh & Dobin in December 1994.It decided 12 ...

  • Freshfields tracks down Tube adviser role

    28-Jul-1998

    FRESHFIELDS has fought off bids from rival City firms to land the coveted post of legal adviser to London Transport and the Government for the proposed £7bn public-private partnership funding of investment in the Tube.To get the work, the firm had to fight its way through a tough selection process that involved a presentation to London Transport together with representatives of the Department of the Environment, Trade and the Regions, the Treasury and the Treasury ...

  • In brief: A quartet of new partners for Wilde Sapte

    28-Jul-1998

    Wilde Sapte has made up four new partners - (l-r) aviation specialist Brett Hailey has been recruited from Clifford Chance, while David Nanson (project finance), Sarah Coucher (banking) and Jonathan Mahony (asset finance) have been promoted internally.

  • In brief: Devon firms link to form ten-partner practice

    28-Jul-1998

    Totnes firm Ursula Bagnall & Co will merge with south Devon firm Kitsons on 1 July. The merged firm will have ten partners spread across offices in Newton Abbot, Torquay and Ashburton as well as Totnes.

  • In brief: Family law heads join mediation specialist

    28-Jul-1998

    Two heads of family law departments and prominent Solicitors' Family Law Association (SFLA) members - Philippa Pearson of Osbornes and James Pirrie of Russell Jones & Walker - have joined mediation specialists the Family Law Consortium (FLC). Pearson chairs the SFLA legal aid committee and Pirrie chairs its procedure committee.

  • In brief: Garretts woos Cobbetts' construction head

    28-Jul-1998

    Garretts 30-lawyer Manchester office has recruited Cobbetts construction litigation head David Rogers as a partner and has appointed a new office managing partner, Tim Hamilton, who joined from Alsop Wilkinson in 1996. The former managing partner, Stephen Devlin, who founded the office three years ago, takes the new role of head of corporate in Manchester.

  • In brief: Landlord/Tenant Bar feature on the Web

    28-Jul-1998

    Due to a typesetter's error in last week's issue, the landlord and tenant Bar feature on pages 17 and 18 was incomplete. A full version of the article can be located on The Lawyer's Web site at http://www.the-lawyer.co.uk.

  • In brief: Med neg work to be restricted to franchisees

    28-Jul-1998

    Only law firms with a legal aid franchise will be able to do medical negligence legal aid work from January 1999. When the Lord Chancellor, Lord Irvine, originally announced his plans to restrict medical negligence work to specialist firms, it was believed firms on the two specialist medical negligence panels would qualify. But a Legal Aid Board spokesman told The Lawyer that from January only firms with a personal injury franchise will be able to do medical negligence work. That pool ...

  • In brief: Shandwick PR scoops Bar Council contract

    28-Jul-1998

    Shandwick Public Affairs has been awarded the Bar Council's £200,000 a year PR contract, beating off competition from three rival bids including one from Westminster Strategy which has held the contract for the past nine years. Jon McLeod, who heads the Shandwick team, said it offered "no quick fix, but we are serious about rebuilding the Bar's reputation".

  • In brief: Vice-Chancellor slams high civil court fees

    28-Jul-1998

    The Vice-Chancellor, Sir Richard Scott, attacked the high fees in the civil courts last week in a lecture at the College of Law sponsored by Clyde & Co. Describing the policy of making courts self-funding as "unacceptable", Scott proposed that court fees be replaced by charging firms for using the planned IT network to streamline court administration.

  • It has been a bad week for...

    28-Jul-1998

    Israel's criminal justice system, the reputation of which received a mauling during the trial of businessman Nahoum Manbar, jailed for selling chemical weapons to Iran. During the trial, his lawyer Amnon Zichroni caused a sensation when he alleged a young intern on his team, 26-year-old Pninat Yanei, had had an intimate relationship with the judge in the case. Judge Amnon Strashnov denied the claim.EuroDisney, which, after ...

  • It has been a good week for...

    28-Jul-1998

    Mr Justice Toulson, who was able to brush up on US popular culture while sitting as a judge. He watched a video of the Howard Stern Show featuring a woman under hypnosis who believed she was having an orgasm and a man who was convinced he was pregnant. The video was shown in a claim by a man who alleges he developed a psychiatric illness after being hypnotised as part of a show by Paul McKenna.Legal aid solicitors in Liverpool, where one in 15 people ...

  • Jeremy Dickerson on the logic of upholding brand pricing. Jeremy Dickerson is a solicitor at Hammond Suddards.

    28-Jul-1998

    The European Court of Justice (ECJ) judgment in the Silhouette case has been long awaited by trade mark owners, practitioners and parallel importers alike. Now that we have the decision, is it so illogical and the bad news that most commentators would have us believe?Given that part of the rationale for the European Union was to produce a common trading block to allow Europe to compete with other trading nations, the judgment is anything but illogical. If ...

  • Lawyers at play

    28-Jul-1998

    Canary Wharf group legal counsel Michael Ashley-Brown can go from 0 to 60 in 3.2 seconds in his 1100cc Club Sport, which he races in his spare time. He is shown with Michael Madden (l) and Martin Wright, both partners at sponsor Ashurst Morris Crisp.

  • Licensed to kill

    28-Jul-1998

    Euthanasia is back on the ABA agenda but Satvinder Juss and Chris Fogarty find courts reluctant to join the debate. Satvinder Juss is a barrister at 4 King's Bench Walk. In recent years the issue of physician-assisted suicide has dominated the American Bar Association conference. Last year the Beverley Hills Bar Association (BHBA) asked the ABA to support physician-assisted suicide and although the proposal would not have directly led to a change in the law, the support of the ...

  • Litigators back Appeal reforms

    28-Jul-1998

    Litigation lawyers have cautiously welcomed the Lord Chancellor, Lord Irvine's announcement that appeals in civil cases could be heard by one or two senior judges rather than a full panel of three.Speaking at the Lord Mayor's annual dinner for judges at Mansion House last Wednesday, Lord Irvine said that the change was part of his drive to modernise the civil justice system.The proposal to reduce the number of judges who hear an appeal was one of the ...

  • Lord Irvine cheers lawyers with housing concession

    28-Jul-1998

    THE LORD Chancellor, Lord Irvine, has delighted housing lawyers by yielding to their campaign to have claims of harassment and unlawful eviction removed from the small claims court.The change is included in draft civil procedure rules which were published by the Lord Chancellor's Department last week.The concession is a second major victory for the sector, which has already persuaded the government to limit the value of housing disrepair cases in the small ...

  • Magistrates' watchdog slates Barking court

    28-Jul-1998

    The Magistrates' Courts Service Inspectorate (MCSI) has slated the management of Barking magistrates' court in a highly critical report published last week.An MCSI inspection in January found "a lack of leadership" from the Barking and Dagenham Magistrates' Courts Committee (MCC), particularly in the way staff were managed.The report also criticises how the MCC schedules court hearings, the long waiting times experienced by those using the courts ...

  • Men v men in US courts

    28-Jul-1998

    Satvinder Juss looks at a Supreme Court ruling which provides a precedent for same-sex harassment actions . In a decision with implications for workplace behaviour, the US Supreme Court has decided men or women taunted or abused by members of their own sex can sue for damages.Like the US Sex Discrimination Act 1975, the federal law Title VII of the Civil Rights Act 1964 outlaws discrimination in the workplace on grounds of race, sex and religion, but it does not mention ...

  • Next week's news

    28-Jul-1998

    On Tuesday human rights group Justice publishes its report on the legal ramifications of the police's growing use of covert investigative methods to tackle crime. It will recommend a single regulatory framework be set up to cover lawful interference with all forms of communications.This week the Home Office hopes to publish its long-awaited Asylum Bill. Expect plans to regulate immigration advisers, including solicitors, increased powers for the detention ...

  • OSS and SFO in staff swap

    28-Jul-1998

    Shaun Pye reports from the Institute of Barristers' Clerks conference. The Serious Fraud Office is understood to have agreed in principle to second two of its investigators to the Office for the Supervision of Solicitors (OSS), in exchange for two senior OSS staff.The move will strengthen ties between the two organisations which have already worked closely together on a number of high-profile cases over the past three years.SFO-style investigation handling ...

  • Property

    28-Jul-1998

    Simon Cookson of Ashurst Morris Crisp advised NatWest on the £226m sale of the International Financial Centre, formerly the NatWest tower, to a partnership of three firms: Greycoat, advised by David Paterson of Herbert Smith; Mercury Asset Management, advised by Nabarro Nathanson; and Hermes, ...

  • Property

    28-Jul-1998

    Gill McGreevy of DJ Freeman advised the Resolution Group in its £18m acquisition of four industrial estates from Lodestone Properties, advised by Robert Muir of Watson Farley & Williams.

  • Quotes of the week

    28-Jul-1998

    "Do you want a sister in Saudi Arabia without a head or without a lawyer?"- Rodger Pannone's advice to the brother-in-law of British nurse Deborah Parry during the Saudi nurses case.See interview, page 1"We don't have to rethink our strategy- Peter Cornell, Clifford Chance's joint managing partner ...

  • Rights of audience are a Holy Grail

    28-Jul-1998

    The Lord Chancellor's recent consultation paper contemplates all solicitors having full rights of audience on qualification. A death-knell for the Bar? Well, hardly. The realities of training, cost and attitude appear to favour the status quo.According to the rules of professional conduct, solicitors must consider whether they have sufficient experience or competence before appearing as advocates.Given the limited advocacy undertaken by most ...

  • Rodger Pannone. Mr Nice Guy shows his mettle

    28-Jul-1998

    Rodger Pannone

  • Rogers & Norton swaps Ace for Linetime

    28-Jul-1998

    NORWICH firm Rogers & Norton has become the latest user of Ace's Infinity practice management system to announce its choice of a replacement system in the wake of Ace's decision to scrap the solicitors' version of the package.The seven-partner firm bought a practice management system from Leeds-based supplier Linetime in May. It says it is on target to get the system up and running by 30 September, when Ace is scheduled to withdraw its support for Infinity.

  • Sacked Clifford Chance assistant settles directory dispute

    28-Jul-1998

    An assistant solicitor sacked by Clifford Chance after he sent a personal submission highlighting his achievements to the Chambers & Partners directory has settled his case.Robert Carolina settled his action for unfair dismissal and breach of contract with Clifford Chance earlier this month.Although both sides are refusing to reveal details of the claim and the settlement, ...

  • SIF faces test case challenge. By Shaun Pye

    28-Jul-1998

    A SOLE practitioner has applied to the High Court for leave to challenge his Solicitors Indemnity Fund (SIF) bill.If Portsmouth-based sole practitioner Michael Dalton wins leave to judicially review the Law Society, when his application is heard in August, it will be the first time that SIF has faced such a challenge.Dalton's application follows his refusal to pay his SIF contribution last year after it doubled due to the introduction of a formula for calculating ...

  • Success fees set to soar

    28-Jul-1998

    Lawyers can expect a massive hike in success fees as a result of government plans to include them in the costs paid by losing defendants, according to leading personal injury lawyer Martyn Day.Speaking at the first Institute of Barristers' Clerks conference, held on 18 July, Day predicted the reform, which seems likely to be adopted by the Government, will lead to success fees of 100 per cent becoming standard practice.Although a supporter of the proposals, ...

  • Taking the Mickey?

    28-Jul-1998

    In the press release announcing EuroDisney as a venue for the Law Society's Annual Conference 1999, Barbara Cahalane, director of communications, said: "It will enable the Law Society to organise a serious conference which will also be great fun."This venue may have advantages but there are many disadvantages, Of the four "innovations" by the Law Society for this year's conference in Bournemouth, three - reductions for ...

  • The land of the freebie?

    28-Jul-1998

    The annual American Bar Association conference is the world's largest legal gathering. But, asks Chris Fogarty, do the Americans care that the British are there and can we really make an impact? High above the shaky ground of San Francisco 12 months ago, a convivial cocktail party was in full swing.In one of the city's plushest hotels, the Bar Council of England and Wales was hosting a reception for its US colleagues attending the American Bar Association annual ...

  • The Lawyer Inquiry: Duncan Black

    28-Jul-1998

    Duncan Black was born in 1962 in New York city. He is a litigation partner at Titmuss Sainer Dechert and co-authored the practitioners' guide, Enforcement of a Judgment, published by Sweet & Maxwell.What was your first job?Sweeping up at CBS Records, Ladbroke Grove, London.What was your first ever salary as a lawyer?

  • Tommy Hilfiger not exhausted

    28-Jul-1998

    I refer to a recent Litigator's View (The Lawyer, 16 June).Jonathan Moore of Hammond Suddards suggests that the case brought by Tommy Hilfiger against Tesco relates to exhaustion of trade mark rights, a general issue which was tackled on 16 July when the European Court of Justice gave judgment in the Silhouette case.We act for Tommy Hilfiger in this action and wish to clarify that the action does not relate to exhaustion of rights or selective ...

  • Top in-house counsel head for Monte Carlo

    28-Jul-1998

    ONE HUNDRED and fifty of the UK's leading companies have already agreed to send delegates to Legal Monte Carlo '98, which promises to be one of the largest ever gatherings of in-house counsel.The event, staged by The Lawyer and sponsored by leading legal IT supplier Axxia Systems, is intended to bring together in-house counsel and private law firms in a series of pre-schedule face-to-face meetings.It is expected 300 in-house lawyers and 300 private ...

  • US firm shuts up shop after a year

    28-Jul-1998

    US firm McKenna & Cuneo has closed down its London office only one year after it opened.National marketing director Norm Rubinstein said the 255-lawyer firm, known for its government contracting, litigation and environmental work, "had decided to consolidate resources in the Brussels office". The London office was opened last year when the firm took on two UK lawyers, Patrick Doyle and Saleem Malik, from US firm Popham Haik.The Lawyer understands that after the ...

  • Welsh bodies to justify grant handling

    28-Jul-1998

    Roger Pearson reports on a High Court action by the Secretary of State for Wales over the handling of grant money.Local authority handling of European grant aid is to come under scrutiny in the High Court. Newport County Borough, the Welsh Development Agency and two companies are being sued by the Secretary of State for Wales, Ron Davies, over accusations of involvement in unlawful deals over grants.Declarations are being sought by the Welsh Secretary that ...