29 September 2003

The Lawyer

  • A place worth talking about

    29-Sep-2003

    Tulkinghorn is amazed at the interest taken by the entire legal community in Clifford Chance's new building. When Grapevine, The Lawyer News Weekly email (straight to your inbox on Wednesdays with all the latest gossip, in case you didn't know) asked for suggestions on how to fill Clifford Chance's gigantic lobby, Tulkinghorrn's colleagues were inundated with ideas. Here's a cross-section of them:

  • A porn lawyer

    29-Sep-2003

    Not all of the market's AIM specialists displayed the high morals of the majority when quizzed about advising porn business Private Media Group on its planned AIM float. Most lawyers immediately kicked into "I couldn't possibly" gear. Not Berwin Leighton Paisner's David Collins. After a few seconds of almost believable pretence that he'd never heard of the company he exclaimed "Oh Private! ...

  • A&O ‘victimised’ employee

    1-Oct-2003

    Allen & Overy has been found guilty of victimising a female Asian employee.

  • A&O associate becomes partner at Simmons

    29-Sep-2003

    Simmons & Simmons has hired an Allen & Overy associate as a partner in its banking practice. Philip Abbott brings considerable experience of advising financial institutions on real estate finance matters.

  • A&O swoops for new airline

    29-Sep-2003

    Allen & Overy (A&O) has added a new client to its expanding airlines practice after beating competitors including Clifford Chance to an instruction from Oman Aviation Services Company.A&O's New York office has closed the airline's first deal with the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank), ...

  • AIM specialists wary of links with pornography group's imminent float

    29-Sep-2003

    Technology and media floats may be coming back into fashion, with Wolfson Microelectronics blazing the trail (The Lawyer, 22 September), but the appetite among the UK's leading AIM specialists for handling the prospective flotation of pornography business Private Media Group (PMG) appears flaccid at best.

  • Akin Gump and Shaw Pittman in merger talks

    29-Sep-2003

    The Washington legal market may be nearing a major shift, as two of its largest firms, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld and Shaw Pittman, consider merging.

  • Altheimer's ex-international chief joins Salans board

    30-Sep-2003

    The former chairman of Altheimer & Gray’s international practice, Louis Goldman, has won a seat on Salans’ global board as part of its acquisition of 57 lawyers from the defunct US firm.

  • Appeal judges back Blunkett on asylum challenge

    30-Sep-2003

    The Court of Appeal ruled last week that an asylum seeker who slept rough at Heathrow Airport could be deprived benefits as he was not suffering “inhuman or degrading” treatment, in a ruling which sees the Home Office winning back some of the ground lost earlier in the year.

  • ASB Law faces £100,000 negligence claim

    29-Sep-2003

    South East firm ASB Law is facing a £100,000 negligence claim brought by a former client of the firm's personal injury department.

  • Ashursts gains Brussels employment capability with Altius hire

    1-Oct-2003

    Ashurst Morris Crisp is launching a specialist employment practice in Brussels with the hire of Philippe De Wulf from Altius to head up the team.

  • B&Q legal head abruptly quits as panel rejig draws to a close

    29-Sep-2003

    As B&Q reaches the final stages of its panel review, it has emerged that Gary Shillinglaw, legal head and company secretary of the UK’s leading home improvement retailer, is suddenly leaving the company.

  • Big six face challenge on profits

    29-Sep-2003

    Niche firms Sparke Helmore and Gilbert + Tobin top Australian profits league; Mallesons keeps top spot for revenue

  • Bird & Bird bolsters Milan with two new practices

    29-Sep-2003

    Bird & Bird has bolted on two new practice areas to its fledgling Italian practice, with the hire of specialists in both employment and financial services.Caterina Rucci joins from Italian firm Abbatescianni e Associati with a team of two others to launch an employment practice, while Raimondo Maggiore comes from the investment management office of Consob, the Italian Security Commission, to ...

  • Black lawyer group wins Law Society funding

    29-Sep-2003

    The Black Solicitors' Network has become the first ethnic minority group to gain Law Society recognition.

  • Bloom quits OFT for Freshfields

    1-Oct-2003

    Margaret Bloom, competition enforcement director at the Office of Fair Trading (OFT), has left her post to join Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer.

  • CAB: legal Aid firms are being ‘audited out of existence’

    30-Sep-2003

    Citizens Advice Bureaux (CABs) warned last week that the legal aid system was “being audited out of existence” as lawyers quit over red tape. CAB chief executive David Harker told delegates at their annual conference that Government policy in this area was “delivering injustice and unfairness in a way that was inexcusable”.

  • Cadwalader trousers millions in New York grants

    29-Sep-2003

    Cadwalader Wickersham & Taft has accepted a federal handout to remain in Lower Manhattan, despite earning millions of dollars in profits last year.

  • Calls to introduce ID cards ‘insane and suicidal’

    30-Sep-2003

    The Home Secretary David Blunkett last week announced that he was still hopeful legislation for a national identity card scheme would be in the Queen’s speech this autumn, despite widespread concerns from lawyers, civil libertarians and even from within the cabinet.

  • CC ousts Linklaters from M&A top spot

    2-Oct-2003

    Clifford Chance has dumped Linklaters from the top of Thomson Financial’s M&A tables for the first three quarters of 2003.

  • CC set to take axe to dead wood partners

    29-Sep-2003

    Voting threshold for expulsion to be lowered as management flexes its muscles

  • Clarke Willmott boosts property team

    1-Oct-2003

    South of England firm Clarke Willmott has hired a new partner to spearhead the firm’s property practice in Southampton.

  • Clifford Chance: no longer the worst employer in the US

    1-Oct-2003

    Clifford Chance is no longer the worst law firm to work for in the US, according to the latest associates survey by The American Lawyer.

  • Command and control

    29-Sep-2003

    Will new leadership at the FSA really translate into a tougher approach from the regulator? Peter Bibby reports

  • Complex questions

    29-Sep-2003

    The world of banking regulation is set to change post-Basel II. Jonathan Walsh asks: do the new rules work or are they just too complicated?

  • Connecticut’s Wiggin & Dana swipes NY boutique

    2-Oct-2003

    Connecticut’s Wiggin & Dana has gained entry to the New York market through a merger with niche Manhattan firm Howe & Addington.

  • Covington links up with KMA

    29-Sep-2003

    A series of links with former US President Bill Clinton has serendipitously led to a new alliance between the Washington DC-based Cov-ington & Burling and international strategic advisory group Kissinger Mc-Larty Associates (KMA).

  • DLA raids Coudert Milan office

    30-Sep-2003

    In a shock move DLA is to acquire the Milan office of Coudert Brothers and sever ties with the former Italian member of its DLA Group, De Berti Jacchia, as the UK firm continues its rampage through Europe.The deal, which will take effect from 6 October, sees DLA take on four partners, around 25 assistants and 15 support staff, with the firm also making another associate up to partner.De Berti Jacchia withdrew from the alliance earlier this month, although the DLA vote is ...

  • Drunk in charge

    29-Sep-2003

    It's good to see that the razor-sharp minds of our esteemed judiciary remain intact even after several jars. District judge David Messenger, arrested recently following a ruckus in a kebab shop, refused to go along quietly with the law. "What proof have you got that you're police officers?" shouted the canny judge, who was allegedly somewhat the worse for wear. Proof of their credentials was clearly found, as the rozzers finally got him into a cell. At which point Messenger began banging ...

  • EC plans to scrap national vetoes

    29-Sep-2003

    The European Commission (EC) is pressing for an end to national vetoes over changes to parts of the EU's founding treaties, as member states prepare to launch the Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) in Rome on 4 October, convened to approve the EU's first formal constitution.

  • Eversheds' Webb in real estate first

    29-Sep-2003

    Eversheds real estate group has appointed its first partner to be fully devoted to its international practice. Midlands real estate head Tim Webb (left) will hand over to Mary Daunt, who joined last year from Garretts, to focus on building cross-border work with Paris, the US, the Middle East and Asia.

  • Fifth IT partner leaves Taylor Wessing

    2-Oct-2003

    High-profile IT partner Kiran Sandford is to leave Taylor Wessing on 13October for Mishcon de Reya. Sandford will be the fifth partner from Taylor Wessing’s IT group to exit the firm this year.

  • Finchley lawyer sparked A&O OSS conflict probe

    29-Sep-2003

    The complaint made to the Law Society about Allen & Overy (A&O) taking instructions from two banks working for competing bidders on the Safeway takeover battle has been withdrawn.The Lawyer can reveal that a complaint was made to the Law Society in July by a male solicitor from a 50-fee-earner firm understood to be unconnected with A&O or the Safeway battle, who sent a letter from a private address in London, N3. He withdrew his complaint shortly afterwards.The ...

  • Firm profile: Gordons

    29-Sep-2003

    Until William Morrison Supermarkets retained Gordons (formerly Gordons Cranswick) to advise on its proposed takeover of Safeway, the national profile of the Bradford-based firm was negligible. With the Safeway deal still rolling along, its reputation as a no-nonsense commercial law firm is now spreading beyond the borders of its home county.

  • Fowl play

    29-Sep-2003

    US firm Crowell & Moring boosted its London office last week with the hire of Jones Day intellectual property lawyer Alison Crofts. But why is this item, which frankly smacks more of the news pages, popping up in the Diary? Because of ducks. Yes, ducks. Little yellow rubber ones. These are the chaps that apparently make Crowell & Moring a firm with "soul", at least according to chairman John ...

  • Freethcartwright gets Nelsons negligence star

    29-Sep-2003

    Midlands firm Freethcartwright is stepping up its commitment to clinical negligence with the hire of Karen Reynolds, a former partner at Nelsons, as partner-in-charge of its Derby-based clinical negligence practice. First revealed on www.thelawyer.com, 24 September

  • Gateshead legal chief steps up to CEO role

    29-Sep-2003

    The legal chief of Gateshead Council is tipped to become the local authority's next chief executive. A special appointments panel has recommended that Roger Kelly, strategic director of legal and corporate services, take over from long-standing chief executive Les Elton, who retires in March 2004. First revealed on www.thelawyer.com, 22 September

  • Gianni launches Naples office

    2-Oct-2003

    Linklaters ally Gianni Origini Grippo & Partners has hired Banco di Napoli’s legal director to help launch an office in Naples.Gianni Origoni is the first major firm to open in Naples and hopes to capitalise on future economic growth thanks to a regional investment program started by the previous government. Nicola Tremante joins from client Banco di Napoli, which recently merged with SanPaolo ...

  • Global appeal

    29-Sep-2003

    With a firm grip on Europe, BEA has certainly made an impact on the software industry. Steve Hoare reports on the billion-dollar company

  • Grapevine

    1-Oct-2003

    More pins in maps: there's something about DLA's frenetic international transformation that is starting to ring warning bells.

  • Haarmanns hires former Hammonds partner

    29-Sep-2003

    Andrew Visintin, the Hammonds equity partner and London head of finance whom the firm suspended last September, has resurfaced at the London office of German firm Haarmann Hemmelrath.

  • Halliwells takes on Bill Cash MP as litigation consultant

    29-Sep-2003

    Shadow Attorney General Bill Cash MP has been taken on by Halliwell Landau as a full-time consultant.

  • Hammonds loses pensions partner to Fox Williams

    29-Sep-2003

    Fox Williams is to launch a separate pensions practice with the hire of partner Ian Greenstreet from Hammonds.

  • Hextalls gains employment head from NGJ

    29-Sep-2003

    Nicholson Graham & Jones has lost its head of employment Jane Liddington to Hextalls. She will join Mark Shulman at Hextalls as the joint head of the employment department. Senior partner Paul Connolly said Liddington's arrival was another part of the significant growth of the firm in the past 12 months. Emma Vere-Jones

  • Hogan & Hartson swipes two Dorsey & Whitney partners for London push

    29-Sep-2003

    ashington DC firm Hogan & Hartson has taken two finance partners from the London office of Dorsey & Whitney as it continues its determined push into the City.

  • IBA draws up guidelines to prevent arbitration conflicts

    29-Sep-2003

    New guidelines have been drawn up by the International Bar Assoc-iation to deal with mounting concerns over arbitrators' independence.

  • Interoute wins Bulldog legal star

    29-Sep-2003

    Interoute has hired experienced Bulldog Comm-unications chief legal officer and general counsel Maurice Woolf, who leaves the telecoms provider after just one year.

  • It must be a mirage

    29-Sep-2003

    Remember the group of unnamed City lawyers that got into a scrape in the Iraqi desert recently? The hapless legal adventurers had to be helicoptered out of a spot of bother by the SAS. Now, we're not saying that the firm was Denton Wilde Sapte, even though it's known for its fondness for offices in remote sandy places. But it's a remarkably handy excuse to print a pic of Dentons PR bod Tim Tezisler in full Lawrence of Arabia mode (below). Camel racing, anyone?

  • Johnson Stokes tipped to advise Cathay Pacific on mass claim

    30-Sep-2003

    Johnson Stokes & Master (JSM) is on standby to defend Hong Kong flag carrier Cathay Pacific against potential claims from more than 1,200 pilots.The threat of law suits follows a Hong Kong High Court ruling that Cathay Pacific breached the employment contract of one of its pilots by forcing him to accept an increased work load. In April, the High Court granted Cathay Pacific pilot Murray Gardner an injunction to block changes to his employment contract. In the test case, ...

  • Judicial appointment system slammed for bias

    1-Oct-2003

    An independent commission has warned that the system of appointing judges is plagued with ‘systematic bias’ against women, ethnic minorities and solicitors.

  • Lady Woolf rallies against family court closures in London

    30-Sep-2003

    Family law practitioners were up in arms last week over plans to scrap family courts and concentrate proceedings in three courts in Greater London, which would lead to no hearings in South London and expose vulnerable people to greater risk.

  • Landwell UK: still too small for the Belgians

    29-Sep-2003

    In a snub to Landwell's UK practice, Belgian ally Bogaert & Vandemeulebroeke is on the hunt for a second alliance with a larger UK or US firm.

  • Law Society pushes Govt to fund new Commercial Court

    29-Sep-2003

    The Law Society has thrown its weight behind the campaign for government funding for a new Commercial Court.

  • Leader

    29-Sep-2003

    It's just as well Clifford Chance's management doesn't sit on the top floor of that heavenly new Canary Wharf tower. Imagine how wistful managing partner Peter Cornell might become if he kept catching glimpses of Linklaters' building. The world's biggest law firm may have more juice bars than anyone else in town, ...

  • LeBoeuf says not guilty

    29-Sep-2003

    LeBoeuf Lamb Greene & McRae will attempt to overturn the verdict of a Manhattan court which found it guilty of legal malpractice in favour of former client Sheraton Corp.

  • Linklaters hires Latham partner for US push

    29-Sep-2003

    Linklaters has further bolstered its New York office by recruiting a restructuring and insolvency partner from Latham & Watkins. Martin Flics is joining Linklaters after the firm recently re-ignited its US strategy with the recruitment of four litigation partners from Shearman & Sterling. First revealed on www.thelawyer.com, 22 September

  • Linklaters in $800m South African BEE transfer deal

    29-Sep-2003

    Linklaters is increasing its dominance of the South African government's Black Economic Empowerment Programme (BBE) after landing a multimillion-pound sale for Impala Platinum Holdings.

  • Linklaters partner quits for Barclays Capital

    29-Sep-2003

    Barclays Capital is again scouring the legal market for new recruits as it takes on Linklaters banking partner Sushma Jobanputra for its structured capital markets group.

  • Linklaters woos Slaughters buddy Nauta with Air France deal

    1-Oct-2003

    Linklaters is muscling in on Slaughter and May’s relationship with Dutch firm Nauta Dutilh after Air France’s high-profile takeover of Dutch flag carrier KLM.

  • London Underground picks five firms to join legal panel

    29-Sep-2003

    Berwin Leighton Paisner, Bird & Bird, Hammonds, Manches and Nicholson Graham & Jones have been appointed to the London Underground legal panel.

  • Lovells on the hunt for QC

    29-Sep-2003

    Lovells looks set to join Herbert Smith in the hunt for a QC in a bid to bolster its in-house advocacy capability. Head of litigation Patrick Sherrington told The Lawyer: "We would certainly be open-minded about getting a QC. We've had it under review for some time."

  • Mathesons replaces managing partner

    29-Sep-2003

    Matheson Ormsby Prentice managing partner Donal Roche is set to step down at the end of the year.He will be replaced by head of tax Liam Quirke, who was selected unanimously by the partnership this summer. Quirke will retain a fee-earning role and continue as head of tax.

  • Milbank lands star seat to act for Apax in billion-dollar satellite deal

    29-Sep-2003

    Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy has scooped a key role advising new client Apax Partners on its billion-dollar buyout of satellite operator Inmarsat.

  • Ministers tackle ‘anachronistic’ and ‘capricious’ land law

    30-Sep-2003

    Ministers last week took the first step to changing a medieval church law deemed by the Law Lords earlier in the year to be “anachronistic, even capricious”. The House of Lords reluctantly ordered a couple to pay £95,000 to a neighbouring 13th century church when they ruled in June that Gail and Andrew Wallbank were liable to help with the upkeep of St John the Baptist Church in Aston Cantlow, Warwickshire, under the Chancel Repairs Act 1932.

  • Minter Ellison creates two new regimes to monitor partnership

    29-Sep-2003

    Minter Ellison, Australia's second largest firm, is introducing a conflicts system and a professional standards committee, both regimes to be under the leadership of recently appointed chairman Peter Bartlett.

  • Moquet hunts for US merger

    29-Sep-2003

    French firm Moquet Borde & Associés is widening its search for an international merger partner.

  • More red tape planned for bar

    29-Sep-2003

    The Bar Council's new rules on direct access are threatening the bar with a whole raft of new regulations and red tape, including strict new guidelines on money laundering and disclosure, similar to those imposed on solicitors.The Bar Council's proposals to extend direct public access to the bar are due to come into force by the end of the year, but first require approval by the Secretary of State for Constitutional Affairs, Lord Falconer.

  • Nabarros rejected from Doncaster Council panel

    29-Sep-2003

    NABARRO Nathanson has been rejected by projects client Doncaster Metropolitan Council, which overlooked the firm in the tender for its extended legal panel. Addleshaw Goddard, Beachcroft Wansbroughs and

  • Offshore direct

    29-Sep-2003

    An agreement between the EU and offshore jurisdictions provides a firm framework for developing future offshore business,says Anthony Dessain

  • Olswang partner springs up at Moorcrofts

    29-Sep-2003

    The former managing partner of Garretts' Reading office, now Olswang, has resurfaced at growing Thames Valley firm Moorcrofts. Commercial property specialist John Castell joined Olswang as a partner last year when the City firm snapped up Garretts' Reading office in a two-week deal. He left the firm earlier this year. First revealed on www.thelawyer.com, 26 September

  • Opinion

    29-Sep-2003

    Although the dotcom boom is history, the ownership of a domain name is still critical for commercial and non-commercial entities. The discretion associated with the grant of a domain name to any individual resides with the various registrars located around the world. These are essentially commercial institutions, not government bodies. The relevant body in the UK is Nominet UK.

  • Orrick replaces London chief

    2-Oct-2003

    Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe has appointed a new head for its London office, as the current incumbent returns to the US.

  • Pinsents corp partner jumps ship to Cobbetts

    29-Sep-2003

    Northern firm Cobbetts has hired Pinsents corporate partner Scott Barraclough for its Leeds office. Barraclough worked for Nabarro Nathanson, Hammonds and Walker Morris, as well as Australian law firm Clayton Utz, before joining Pinsents. His appointment brings the number of corporate partners in Cobbetts' Leeds office ...

  • Pro bono & community action - 39 Essex Street saves Pendle locals from yuppie invasion

    29-Sep-2003

    It was in the middle of Ramadan and nine days before Christmas 2001 when Martin Edwards, a planning and public law barrister at 39 Essex Street, came across an interesting case from the Bar Pro Bono Unit. The community of Whitefields in East Lancashire was the subject of a compulsory purchase order issued by Pendle Borough Council. The council planned to demolish 450 Victorian stone houses for regeneration, breaking up the area's well-integrated White and Pakistani community. As Edwards ...

  • Safe but sorry

    29-Sep-2003

    Daniel Tunkel reports on the clumsy interaction between investor protection and small business finance

  • Separated at birth

    29-Sep-2003

    We all know that lawyers make squillions, but even Tulkinghorn was surprised to learn that Mishcon de Reya partner Jeremy Hertzog had squirreled enough away to pick up his own football team. Hertzog, a litigator, has famously embarked on an ambitious spending spree since picking up Chelsea for £140m. So far he has spent £111m on new players and managed to persuade former Manchester United ...

  • Shared options

    29-Sep-2003

    Fund managers have long been thwarted in their attempts to sell to high-net-worth clients. But the FSA has conducted a review which could open the gates. John Goodhall reports

  • Skadden raids Haarmann in new German push

    1-Oct-2003

    US firm Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom has recruited Hans-Georg Berg from Haarmann Hemmelrath to boost its German tax practice.Frankfurt head Hilary Foulkes said: “We are delighted that Dr Berg is joining us. First-class German tax capability is essential to both our growing German M&A and finance practices.”For more on this story, see The Lawyer on Monday.

  • Sleeping duty

    29-Sep-2003

    Which well-known corporate partner at Linklaters fell asleep in the property precedents room when he was a trainee? The young lawyer had been out at a bachelor party the night before when his supervisor, a senior property associate, sent him up to the property cupboard to do some research. The trainee thought he'd get in a bit of crafty shut-eye. Instead of a quick power nap though, he fell asleep for ...

  • Special Scouser

    29-Sep-2003

    Good to see that the world-famous Scouse humour is living on in the City's legal community. Well-known Liverpool solicitor Rex Makin had his long service - 54 years since admission and still counting - recognised by the Freedom of the City award in June. Makin said: "I've received a letter of congratulations from the Liverpool Law Society - but it was written in invisible ink." Makin's wryness is perhaps an acknowledgement that among the other recipients of the award this year was, ...

  • St James's chambers raids rival for barristers

    29-Sep-2003

    Manchester-based St James's Chambers is celebrating a coup after the hire of four senior barristers from Cobden House Chambers. Charles Machin is a specialist litigator, Sean Kelly a company law expert and Jonathan Smith a local government practitioner, while Sarah Harrison focuses on trusts. The appointments will take the barrister count of St James's chancery team to 13, with 26 in total. First revealed on www.thelawyer.com, 25 September

  • Tales of a porn star

    29-Sep-2003

    Put off studying law in his youth, Andrew Wren got into porn by accident. He has a starring role too - as company secretary. Emma Vere-Jones reports

  • Taylor Wessing plots Paris launch with Landwell raid

    1-Oct-2003

  • The revolution in litigation starts from the bottom

    29-Sep-2003

    Naomi Rovnick reports on whether abolishing litigation seats for trainees will really work

  • The time for action

    29-Sep-2003

    Lamfalussy: Joe Coffey reports on the progress of the action plan

  • Tough talking

    29-Sep-2003

    Sir Howard Davies promised that his successors would bring a 'dirty dozen' of insider dealing and market abuse cases. But how come it's taken so long? By Jon Robins

  • Trial by audience

    29-Sep-2003

    Fragrant actors Jenny Seagrove and Caroline Langrishe, respectively Jo Mills QC and the confusingly-named George Channing QC from TV's Judge John Deed, rubbed shoulders with a real live silk last week. Cherie Booth QC was on hand at a dinner to mark the success of the Open University's law course to give the thesp barristers some pointers.

  • Uria appoints head of Latin-America practice

    29-Sep-2003

    Uria & Menéndez has appointed Eduardo Rodríguez-Rovira as the new head of its Latin America Practice Group. Rodríguez-Rovira specialises in debt restructuring, corporate reorganisations and investment protection.

  • Vietnam receives millions in aid for seven-year judiciary reform plan

    29-Sep-2003

    VIETNAM has launched an ambitious plan to reform its judiciary system, in a bid to improve efficiency and independence.

  • Who's on Herbert Smith's shopping list?

    29-Sep-2003

    Last week, The Lawyer revealed that Herbert Smith is setting up its own chambers in order to decrease its reliance on the junior bar.

  • World Trade Center insurance case heads for trial

    29-Sep-2003

    World Trade Center leaseholder Larry Silverstein’s bid to collect almost $7bn (£4.24bn) in insurance money for the destruction of the twin towers now rests firmly in the hands of a jury following his defeat in a federal appeals court, New York Law Journal reports.

  • Wragges adds pensions to London capability

    1-Oct-2003

    Wragge & Co is adding yet another practice area to its growing London presence, with the addition of a pensions specialist.