30 March 1998

The Lawyer

  • A taxing assessment

    31-Mar-1998

    A note of caution to professional partnerships in their dealings with the Inland Revenue. Yes, the Revenue is getting to grips with self assessment calculations for 1996/97. But in many cases they are getting them wrong, because the self assessment teams are trying to settle each partner's individual liability, without checking on their colleagues' progress in dealing with partnership assessments.Worse, their computer system has not been correctly ...

  • Any relief on the tax front?

    31-Mar-1998

    Jonathan Hooley says it is imperative to understand the subtle differences between Jersey's and Guernsey's tax regimes. Jonathan Hooley is a partner at KPMG in the Channel Islands.On the surface Guernsey and Jersey operate very similar tax regimes. Both raise the majority of their revenue from income tax. Both tax income at 20 per cent. With the exception of dwellings profits tax in Guernsey, neither tax capital gains. Neither levy any form of direct ...

  • ASF appeals to lawyers for Rwanda project

    31-Mar-1998

    Avocats sans Frontieres (ASF) has stepped up efforts to recruit lawyers to take part in genocide trials in Rwanda.The Brussels-based organisation has asked the International Bar Association, the Union Internationale des Avocats, and some national Bar associations to help find French-speaking lawyers prepared to stay in the war-torn country for at least a month.Jacques Van Gelder, ASF's vice-president, said that the organisation wanted to create a reserve ...

  • Bacfi gives scant praise to rights of audience victory

    31-Mar-1998

    Barristers employed in industry are claiming a hollow victory after the Bar Council agreed to give them rights of audience in the higher courts but laid down strict requirements preventing many from taking advantage of them.At its meeting on 21 March the Bar Council voted to give employed barristers the same limited higher court rights of audience as the Government granted to employed solicitors in February last year.The proposals have now been submitted to the ...

  • Bonds - Securing a future with IP assets

    31-Mar-1998

    Musicians are not the only group to utilise IP securitisation as a means of guaranteed future income, writes Matthew Higdon. Matthew Higdon is a solicitor at Taylor Joynson Garrett. Intellectual property (IP) securitisation is a high-profile issue on the international stage at present, with Rod Stewart rumoured to be following David Bowie onto the bond market in the near future.These entertainers have stolen the limelight, but major corporates are also waiting to plug into ...

  • Boosting statutory powers

    31-Mar-1998

    The Guernsey Financial Services Commission is tightening up supervision of trustees. Michael Betley outlines the proposals. Michael Betley is a partner at Wedlake Bell McKean in Guernsey.Trustee and corporate service providers are the only professionals in Guernsey who are not directly regulated by the Guernsey Financial Services Commission (GFSC). However, that situation is ...

  • Bound by injunctions

    31-Mar-1998

    Matthew Thompson, Timothy Le Cocq and Kerry Lawrence on how Jersey is dealing with attempts to hide assets. Matthew Thompson and Timothy Le Cocq are partners and Kerry Lawrence is a barrister at Jersey law firm Ogier & Le Masurier.A recent chain of decisions in Jersey relating to Mareva injunctions illustrates how the Jersey courts are not willing to allow the island to be used as a hiding place for the assets of defendants being pursued elsewhere.Jersey ...

  • Brief

    31-Mar-1998

    Last year's winner of the prestigious Legal Personality of the Year Award, Cherie Booth QC, is to join the judging panel for the fourth annual The Lawyer/Hifal awards to be held on 25 June.Booth will be among a distinguished panel of legal luminaries judging 21 separate awards which will be presented at a ceremony at Grosvenor House.But the 22nd award Legal Personality of the Year will once again be decided by the profession. Simply call 0171 437 6962 ...

  • Brief

    31-Mar-1998

    Leading commercial and public law set 2 Hare Court has elected Charles Flint QC and Presiley Baxendale QC as joint heads of chambers (pictured above). Baxendale was counsel during the Arms to Iraq hearings.Colin Ross-Munro QC, head of chambers for the past 19 years, will continue to practice from the set.In August, the 52-tenant set is moving to Blackstone House on Essex Street, which was recently acquired by Middle Temple from BUPA. It will be known as Blackstone ...

  • Budget leaves islands in flux

    31-Mar-1998

    Robert Clifford investigates how a raft of proposals announced by the Chancellor will affect the operation of offshore trusts. Robert Clifford is a partner at Theodore Goddard in Jersey.One certainty about the Chancellor, Gordon Brown's first full Budget was that it would do no favours for the offshore islands.As expected, offshore trusts attracted particular attention. But the net effect of the changes does not appear to be unduly disadvantageous, ...

  • CC pips Slaughters at post in £1bn student loan sell off

    31-Mar-1998

    A year-long bidding process for the first ever private sector purchase of UK student loans won by a consortium advised by Clifford Chance has left Freshfields and Slaughter and May licking their wounds.Freshfields had been advising two of the four shortlisted bidders for the £1bn tranche ...

  • Civil Justice Council to probe impact of switch from legal aid to conditional fees

    31-Mar-1998

    LAWYERS' fears that the switch from legal aid funding to conditional fees in personal injury cases will deny justice to litigants are to be investigated by the Lord Chancellor's new advisory body, the Civil Justice Council.The 22-member council, which held its inaugural meeting on 20 March, is to set up a sub-committee to consider whether adequate funding mechanisms and legal expenses insurance packages are in place to allow for a smooth withdrawal of legal aid ...

  • Clyde & Co opens Greek office

    31-Mar-1998

    Clyde & Co has become the latest UK firm to open for business in the Greek port of Piraeus.Martin Hall, the partner who has been sent to the city to set up the operation, said the office was needed to serve Greek clients, many of whom had moved operations from London back to Piraeus, as a result of improved communications and infrastructure in Greece."Piraeus has become much ...

  • CPS report on hold as Mills draws up response

    31-Mar-1998

    PUBLICATION of the long-awaited Glidewell review into the Crown Prosecution Service has been put on hold to allow Director of Public Prosecutions Dame Barbara Mills QC to respond to the report's findings.The Lawyer understands that the retired Court of Appeal judge Sir Iain Glidewell has conceded to a request by Mills and her senior managers to be allowed to make a detailed response to the report before it is published.It is also understood that the CPS ...

  • Dibbs partner defects to Hammonds' London office

    31-Mar-1998

    Dibb Lupton Alsop's London construction partner David Hickman has moved to the London office of rival national firm Hammond Suddards.Hickman has substantial Private Finance Initiative (PFI) experience and will be given national responsibility for the development of the firm's inter-departmental PFI work.It is understood that he moved partly because he believes PFI is more central to Hammonds' corporate practice. Hammonds has a much larger construction ...

  • Duty solicitor scheme set for shake-up in LAB review

    31-Mar-1998

    Firms without legal aid franchises may be excluded from undertaking duty solicitor police station work as part of a major shake-up of the scheme planned for the summer.The Legal Aid Board (LAB) is to embark on a three-month review of the scheme this week in response to claims from firms with criminal law franchises that they are not gaining enough extra work to compensate for the investment they ploughed into getting franchises.In a statement, the LAB said it ...

  • Environment court

    31-Mar-1998

    Italian Supreme Court Judge, Amadeo Postiglione, who also acts as the director of the International Court of Environment Foundation, has called for an international court on the environment. He told an International Bar Association seminar in Rome this week that a sustainable environment constituted a human right, and that a global forum in which environmental crimes could be heard would protect that right.

  • Euro threat prompts CC merger talks

    31-Mar-1998

    CLIFFORD Chance is in preliminary merger talks with three leading European firms as part of a dramatic change of strategy in response to the expansionist ambitions of its UK rivals.The move comes as partners at Linklaters and the Alliance of European Lawyers gear up to vote on a plan to form a single-name legal federation of 1,700 lawyers.Although the federation is likely to ...

  • Footballer's career cut short

    31-Mar-1998

    A former professional footballer, Kieron Brady, is seeking damages from Sunderland Football Club. He blames the club for cutting short his career, accusing it of negligence for failing to refer him to a medical specialist in time after he complained of pains in his leg. Brady was later diagnosed as having a serious artery condition. He is also suing two specialists who treated him, claiming their treatment led to irretrievable damage.

  • Guernsey's new goals

    31-Mar-1998

    The island's aggressive approach to marketing its financial services does not always impress its rivals, according to Richard Newell. Richard Newell is the editor of International Money Marketing.The Channel Islands are always fiercely defensive of their traditions and status. In the current environment of uncertainty brought about by the UK government's review and its plans to legislate on anti-avoidance, the financial sector is once again anxious ...

  • Havens have nothing to hide

    31-Mar-1998

    Edward Cain says offshore centres are often misunderstood and unfairly vilified but play a significant international role. Edward Cain is an English-qualified solicitor at Cains.The significance of the role played by offshore jurisdictions in the international financial services industry has never been greater.The presence of banking and other financial institutions is greater in some offshore jurisdictions than it is in major financial centres in ...

  • How islands drew the short Straw

    31-Mar-1998

    Offshore centres are angry with the Home Secretary. Philip Jeune explains why. Philip Jeune is a freelance journalist.Channel Island politicians are still reeling from the news of the Home Office review of their financial laws and regulations not so much because of the review itself but rather the manner in which it was announced by Jack Straw.Centuries of protocol were, in their view, swept aside by the Home Secretary when he chose to inform the ...

  • In brief: Eversheds Cardiff loses two partners

    31-Mar-1998

    Leading Welsh corporate finance partner Laurence James has left Eversheds Cardiff for rival 10-partner Cardiff general practice Palser Grossman. He joins in August. On 1 May even higher profile corporate finance partner Alan Whiteley, goes to Cardiff corporate finance boutique Gambit Corporate Finance. Eversheds Cardiff managing partner David Vokes said he looked forward to working with Whiteley as a ...

  • In brief: Herbert Smith appoints nine partners

    31-Mar-1998

    Herbert Smith has appointed nine new partners with effect from 1 April. Pictured from left to right are the seven based in the firm's London office: Carol Shutkever, corporate; Alan Watts, commercial litigation; Bradley Phillips, tax; Andrew Lidbetter, commercial litigation and public law; Ben Ward, corporate; Sophie Quayle, planning; and Chris De Pury, commercial property. Also appointed were Ian Tokley in the China securities department in Hong Kong and Denis Chemla in the commercial ...

  • In brief: Home Secretary urges youth court speed-up

    31-Mar-1998

    At a Home Office seminar last week, Home Secretary Jack Straw called on the 20 busiest youth court areas, including inner London, Nottingham and Cardiff, to head the Government's youth justice overhaul by halving the time between arrest and sentence (currently five months) and by fast-tracking persistent young offenders.

  • In brief: Hoon takes legal aid consultation to Cardiff

    31-Mar-1998

    Geoff Hoon, the Lord Chancellor's parliamentary secretary, will meet Welsh solicitors in Cardiff this Thursday as part of the consultation process on proposed changes to legal aid. Two weeks ago he was due to meet solicitors in Bristol, but he cancelled after the Bristol office of the Law Society issued a press release which said solicitors in the city were "dismayed" by the government's reform plans.

  • In brief: Law Soc spending under fire from TSG

    31-Mar-1998

    The Trainee Solicitors Group has called on the Law Society to freeze this year's proposed increase to their Law Society contributions until it can account for how £1.2m of the £2.2m trainee solicitors contributed last year was spent. According to the group, the society's accounts show that under half the money their members paid to it was spent on legal education and training. But a society spokesman said the extra money was spent on general services which benefitted ...

  • In brief: Lawyer leaves band post to join Halliwells

    31-Mar-1998

    Former Garretts intellectual property partner Richard Boardman has ended a nine-month stint as business adviser to folk rock band the Kelly Family to become a partner at Manchester firm Halliwell Landau.

  • In brief: New RJW dept focuses on poisoning law

    31-Mar-1998

    Russell Jones & Walker (RJW) has become the first firm to dedicate a department to the area of chemical poisoning law, after recruiting expert in the field Alan Care from rival practice Leigh Day & Co to lead the new department. RJW aims to recruit lawyers to the department in the next few months and may recruit academics on a full-time basis to handle the scientific data involved in the cases.

  • In brief: Turbervilles and Nelson Cuff to merge

    31-Mar-1998

    A merger of commercial firms Uxbridge-based Turbervilles and Harrow-based Nelson Cuff will take place on 1 April, resulting in a 10-partner firm.

  • In brief: Windfall boosts LCF's legal service bid

    31-Mar-1998

    The Law Centres Federation has received a National Lottery grant for new technology which could boost its bid to front the Government's proposed community legal service. The £188,000 windfall will be used to install a computer, with modem and e-mail services in all 52 law centres.

  • Incentives maketh the Man

    31-Mar-1998

    The Isle of Man Film Commission's incentives ensure that the island has a starring role in the industry, writes Helen Tulley. Helen Tulley is a senior assistant in the intellectual property/media department of Hammond Suddards.Film production incentives, which were introduced three years ago by the Isle of Man government, have made a significant contribution to the boom in the UK movie industry.Since the Isle of Man Film Commission was set up, ...

  • Innovating for a secure future

    31-Mar-1998

    Guernsey is introducing progressive legislation to keep it at the forefront of financial services provision. Chris bound and Sean Cheong explain the latest raft of laws A modern and progressive body of law is critical to the delivery of high-quality offshore financial services. Guernsey has recently made substantial progress in this area, most notably by novel legislation to create protected cell companies to permit companies to amalgamate and to change their ...

  • Insolvency lawyers want company levy

    31-Mar-1998

    Companies should pay contributions to a central fund to help pay lawyers' fees in liquidations, according to a radical suggestion by the Insolvency Lawyers Association (ILA).Professor David Milman and Rebecca Parry at Manchester University proposed the move, after conducting the first ever study commissioned by the ILA into the treatment of creditors in insolvencies.They found that in 60 per cent of cases, liquidators who were faced with suspect transactions ...

  • Isle of Man for all reasons

    31-Mar-1998

    The Isle of Man shirks the "tax haven' label preferring to promote itself as a reputable financial centre, writes Stephanie Apap Bologna. As opposed to rival centres, the Isle of Man promotes itself as a jurisdiction which still has plenty of room to accept more players. Stephanie Apap Bologna is a journalist at International Money Marketing.Recently an Isle of Man contingency, made up of senior dignitaries from the island's government, business and ...

  • Jersey builds up its defences

    31-Mar-1998

    Draft legislation looks set to leave those trying to launder money between a rock and a hard place. Alan Binnington reports. Alan Binnington is a partner at Jersey law firm Mourant du Feu & Jeune.Despite often adverse coverage in the press and the occasional protestations of government, offshore finance centres such as Jersey play a useful role in attracting funds for investment in the UK and the European Union.Indeed, a recent estimate suggests that ...

  • Kennedys exits talks but takes on office

    31-Mar-1998

    LONDON firm Kennedys has stepped down from its merger talks with Liverpool practice Weightmans and Teesside's Jacksons and taken over the eight-partner London office of Manchester insurance practice Elliott & Co.A tripartite merger between the three insurance practices would have created a top-25 UK ...

  • Law Soc appoints Roger Smith to new education and training post

    31-Mar-1998

    Legal Action Group (LAG) director Roger Smith has been snapped up by Chancery Lane to become its director of legal education and training.The move is a major fillip for the society, which has been slowly rebuilding its team of senior staff after the exodus of top officials following Martin Mears' election as president.Smith, who takes up the new post in July, has been at the LAG for 12 years and has built it into a self-funding business with a turnover of ...

  • Law Soc welcomes EU-US free tade area with trepidation

    31-Mar-1998

    European Union plans to start talks on creating a free trade area between the US and the EU have been cautiously welcomed by the Law Society as a way to break the deadlock with the US over rights of establishment of EU solicitors in the US.Earlier this month, the European Commission gave the go ahead to the project nicknamed the "New Transatlantic Marketplace" which has been put forward by EU commissioners Sir Leon Brittan, Martin Bangemann and Mario Monti.Formal ...

  • Linklaters gets $800m strike-out

    31-Mar-1998

    Linklaters has won a round for client Ernst & Young in its battle with the BCCI liquidator, Deloitte & Touche which is being represented by Lovell White Durrant following Mr Justice Laddie's strike-out of $800m from a $3.4bn negligence claim.Judge Laddie struck out another $1.8bn of the claim last year, but it was reinstated by the Court of Appeal only last month.The latest ...

  • Litigation Disciplinary Tribunals 31/03/98

    31-Mar-1998

    Barnard James Ewart, practising on own account between May 1988 and January 1995 as Ewart & Co, Leeds, and from January 1995 in partnership as Jackson Heath, fined £1,250 and ordered to pay £1,962 costs. Allegations substantiated that he failed to comply with a decision of the Conduct Committee of the Adjudication and Appeals Committee, failed to deliver accountant's report on time, failed to keep properly written up books and ...

  • Litigation Personal Injury 31/03/98

    31-Mar-1998

    Buckingham v Chapman QBD 21 November 1998Claimant: Peter Buckingham, 4Incident: Road traffic accidentInjuries: Before the accident, claimant, an £80,000-a-year civil engineer, was regarded as "happy, energetic and easy-going". As a result of the accident, he will require the supervision of others for the rest of his life. Judge said he no longer makes a contribution to the household, but can carry out tasks ...

  • Litigation Recent Decisions 31/03/98

    31-Mar-1998

    Decisions are taken from Lawtel's Case Law database. LTL: Lawtel report; TLR: Times Law Reports; ILR: Independent Law Report.Copyright in categorisation of radio station playlistRobin Ray v Classic FM (1998)ChD (Lightman J) 18/3/9The plaintiff, a writer and broadcaster of classical music, claimed against a radio station, for breach of copyright. At issue was the entitlement of the parties to the intellectual property ...

  • Litigation Writs 31/03/98

    31-Mar-1998

    Frank Parish of Middlesex is suing Thistle Hotels of Leeds for damages in respect of injuries he suffered in an accident on 19 January 1995, when working for Thistle at the Kensington Palace Hotel in London.Writ issued by Moss Beachley & Mullem, London W1.A Falklands War veteran is suing the Government. Christopher Duggan has issued a writ against the Ministry of Defence (MoD), seeking damages for post traumatic stress disorder following ...

  • Mathews offers LGG bittersweet symphony. Michael Mathews' speech at the Local Government Group conference was both reassuring and disturbing for members, writes Chris Fogarty

    31-Mar-1998

    Before Law Society vice-president Michael Mathews stood up to make his after-dinner speech, his audience at the Local Government Group (LGG) conference had been anxious over the society's plans for local government lawyers.But by the time he sat down, they were seething with anger.The audience had been expecting Mathews to address fears that the LGG may be axed as part of the society's plans to divide solicitors into new "sections", reflecting the type ...

  • Merger prospects for Birmingham sets rejected

    31-Mar-1998

    Birmingham Chambers 3 Fountain Court has unanimously rejected a merger offer from its neighbour 4 Fountain Court.The move is the latest stage of a frantic round of merger offers and talks at the Birmingham Bar which has already led to one merger announcement that of Priory Chambers and 7 Fountain Court.Head of chambers at 36-tenant 3 Fountain Court, Colman Treacy QC, confirmed an "unspecified" set made an approach about a month ago, which had been turned down ...

  • Merger prospects for Birmingham sets rejected

    31-Mar-1998

    LOVELL White Durrant's move to new headquarters at Atlantic House, High Holborn in London declared official last week will leave the firm with plenty of room for expansion.Andrew Walker, senior partner at the City firm, said that the management had budgeted for an increase in staff numbers of 4 per cent a year.With 1,300 members of staff already, this means the practice is looking to take on about 50 new employees a year.Lovells has entered ...

  • Milbank Tweed

    31-Mar-1998

    Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy has taken on Oren Azar, an associate from the Singapore office of Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom, to join the US firm's office in the city. Azar joins as a partner in its corporate finance practice. Milbank Tweed chairman Mel Immergut said: "His partnership is timely as the firm recently formed a task force for Asia restructurings and M&A ...

  • New body, new regime

    31-Mar-1998

    A new regulatory body is to police Jersey's finance industry. Richard Syvret explains how it will work. Richard Syvret is director of Jersey's Financial Services Department.Over the past 40 years, Jersey has become a leading international finance centre. Trustees, custodians, administrators, accountants and lawyers make up some of the 10,000 professionals employed by the industry.Regulation of the finance industry is currently the responsibility ...

  • New panel ready for "Year 2000' disputes

    31-Mar-1998

    The City Disputes Panel (CPD) has formed a distinguished "Year 2000" panel to deal with the expected flood of disputes over millennium bug problems.It has assembled six prominent legal and business brains to act as tribunal chairmen. They are: Lord Mustill, Sir Brian Neill, Sir Christopher Staughton, Sir John Balcombe, Sir Iain Glidewell the chair of the Government's current review into the Crown Prosecution Service and VV Veeder QC, the leading international arbitration ...

  • Offshore trusts and the new post-Budget regime

    31-Mar-1998

    Peter Trevett QC and Jonathan Peacock say Gordon Brown's second Budget could leave professional advisers scrambling to review trust arrangements. Peter Trevett QC and Jonathan Peacock are barristers at 11 New Square.The immediate impact of Gordon Brown's second Budget on offshore jurisdictions is twofold.First, the changes to UK capital gains tax and inheritance tax are not as bad as had been feared.Advisers can breathe a limited ...

  • One firm may still scupper Alliance's federation deal

    31-Mar-1998

    The creation of the world's largest legal federation between the six firms that make up the Alliance of European Lawyers and Linklaters could still be scuppered by a vote against by one firm.Although it is thought an unlikely event, the Alliance has told Linklaters that if one of its member firms votes against the deal, or raises an objection that is substantive and incapable of resolution, ...

  • OSS climbs down on £31,000 claim against corrupt solicitor

    31-Mar-1998

    The Office for the Supervision of Solicitors (OSS) has dropped a £31,000 claim against a corrupt solicitor after conceding that he should have been struck off earlier.It is claimed that the move could open the floodgates to a string of similar climb-downs.The Law Society had claimed £61,000 in the bankruptcy of James Peasegood a solicitor struck off in September 1988 for misuse of client funds. The sum was made up of £30,000 for the cost of ...

  • Problem plaintiffs in the dock

    31-Mar-1998

    The resolution of cases involving a group of individual investors and a firm of stockbrokers has resulted in a stern warning from Jersey's courts about the importance of avoiding dirty tactics. Michael O'Connell and Fraser Robertson report. Michael O'Connell is a partner and Fraser Robertson is an associate at Jersey firm Bailhache Labesse.The Jersey courts have sent a strong message to plaintiffs not to abuse the judicial process and at the same ...

  • Professional negligence Bar

    31-Mar-1998

    In the professional negligence feature (The Lawyer, 17 March), Michael De Navarro QC was wrongly stated as having acted for Edward Erdman in Nykredit Mortgage Bank v Edward Erdman. In fact, Simon Berry QC of 9 Old Square acted for Erdman.

  • Property

    31-Mar-1998

    Titmuss Sainer Dechert acted for Hercules Property Services in the £4m acquisition of the property management business and a portfolio of properties from St Mary's Estates, advised by Finers.

  • Property

    31-Mar-1998

    Linklaters advised MEPC on the pre-letting of 340,000 sq ft of the £250m Woolgate Exchange building in Basinghall Street London EC2 to Westdeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale, advised by Herbert Smith. Linklaters also advised MEPC on the conditional agreement to buy the freehold from Chase Manhattan Bank, advised by Nabarro

  • Property

    31-Mar-1998

    Fladgate Fielder advised Capital and Regional Investments on the £9m purchase of the Peel Centre, Bognor Regis from Bass Pensions, advised by Eversheds.

  • Property developers in taxing dispute

    31-Mar-1998

    The Redrow Group has been given leave to take its case against the VAT men to the House of Lords, reports Roger Pearson. A long-running battle between property developer the Redrow Group and Customs & Excise over the VAT status of a vital element of a property incentive purchase scheme is to go to the House of Lords.Under the scheme, Redrow paid the fees of estate agents who sold existing homes of potential purchasers of Redrow homes. The legal row dates back to ...

  • Rabinovitch granted legal aid for divorce

    31-Mar-1998

    The woman who is divorcing her wealthy husband to marry Anthony Julius Princess Diana's divorce lawyer has been granted legal aid.The Legal Aid Board confirmed last week that it had granted a legal aid certificate to freelance journalist Dina Rabinovitch, who is divorcing Guido Rauch, a wealthy derivatives trader.She is instructing Simone Katzenberg, a partner in Hampstead firm Solomon Taylor & Shaw.Ironically, Julius' wife Judith, who ...

  • Shareholders object to Barings plan

    31-Mar-1998

    The lawyer acting for Barings preference shareholders is intending to object in court to the settlement that was hammered out by the City Disputes Panel (CPD) last week.The CPD aims to settle litigation between three groups of bondholders and give payouts of varying proportions to each group. But it provides nothing for the 1,500 preference shareholders, whose investment in Barings totalled over £50m.Their lawyer, Dominic Hopkins, of Hewitson Becke + Shaw, ...

  • Shipping "notices of readiness'

    31-Mar-1998

    In a shipping case centring on criteria necessary to render "notices of readiness" valid (The Lawyer, 10 March), the court has now ruled that although charter party notices of readiness were sent early on the understanding that they would not be acted on until the ship owners' offices opened for business bringing them within the charter party time scale they were not invalid.

  • Stones swallows fellow Exeter practice

    31-Mar-1998

    FOURTEEN-partner commercial Exeter firm Stones is swallowing up its five-partner neighbour Cann & Hallett.David Cox, practice manager at Canns, said the main reason for the move was the "tremendous competition" in the region.The new firm Stones Cann & Hallett will have 16 partners and 40 other fee earners, and will have offices in Exeter and Okehampton.Cox admitted there would be redundancies as a result of the merger but said that the firms had ...

  • Susan Aslan on the use of preliminary hearings in libel actions. Susan Aslan is a solicitor at DJ Freeman.

    31-Mar-1998

    Libel trials are unusual in that they are one of the few civil hearings in which a jury is involved. The libel jury decides not only liability but also the meaning of the words complained of and, if it finds for the plaintiff, it awards damages.The jury does not have to adopt either the plaintiff's or the defendant's interpretation of the words published or broadcast. It can substitute its own interpretation.In the recent case of Marks & Spencer ...

  • The Lawyer Inquiry: Matthew Martin

    31-Mar-1998

    Matthew Martin was born in 1966 in Hertfordshire. He works for Manches & Co as a corporate finance solicitor.What was your first job?Slating the roof of Kim Wilde's barn.What was your first ever salary as a lawyer?£15,000.What would you have done if you hadn't become a lawyer?Played right back for Manchester United.Which law could you ...

  • Three female lawyers quit Ashursts dept in a week

    31-Mar-1998

    THREE senior women solicitors have resigned from Ashurst Morris Crisp's property department in successive days amid claims that not enough women in the firm are being made up to partnership.The solicitors associate Shona Price and assistants Delia Kempley and Barbara Kerin resigned successively over a three-day period two weeks ago.Their departures followed that of another ...

  • Top firms square up for battle in Europe

    31-Mar-1998

    The race for Europe is now firmly on, as Linklaters and Clifford Chance feverishly compete to become top dog in the Continent.Clifford Chance has undoubtedly managed to achieve this position to date but Linklaters, the sleeping giant of Europe, has now woken up and is preparing to really ...

  • Trowers & Hamlin grows in the Gulf

    31-Mar-1998

    Trowers & Hamlin continues to expand in the Gulf, with the opening of an office in Bahrain, its fourth in the region.The move comes a month after the firm announced it was upgrading its office in Oman.Driving the initiative is a growth in project finance work.Martin Amison, head of the international projects department, said: "Project finance work in the region is only getting started. It is clearly the case that banks in Bahrain will have quite a ...

  • Trusts may face taxing times

    31-Mar-1998

    Double-barrelled Budgets have had a varied impact on the Isle of Man and will give trustees food for thought, says Jane Bates. Jane Bates is a Scottish solicitor in practice with Isle of Man-based Mann & Partners.A double-dose of anticipation was experienced on the Isle of Man on 17 March. At 10.30am, Richard Corkill, the Isle of Man Treasury Minister, presented his budget to Tynwald, the island's parliament, preceding by a few hours Chancellor Gordon Brown's ...

  • TSD extends alliance

    31-Mar-1998

    Titmuss Sainer Dechert has announced a three-year extension to its unique transatlantic alliance with US firm Dechert Price & Rhoads. The alliance will continue until June 2001.

  • Unique route for offshore vehicles

    31-Mar-1998

    The use of Isle of Man vehicles in international business is becoming increasingly popular. Richard Vanderplank reports. Richard Vanderplank is a partner at law firm Cains.Over the past few years, the Isle of Man has seen a steady growth in the number and value of international financing transactions that use corporate and other vehicles.The Isle of Man has for some time had a track record in aircraft and vessel leasing. Now, not only has this type ...

  • US senators focus on Clinton plans for domain name register

    31-Mar-1998

    (Elizabeth Davidson reports)US president Bill Clinton's proposals to set up an American body to register domain names will come under the scrutiny of the House of Representatives for the first time this week.Clinton wants to set up a US-based non-profit-making organisation to register top level domain names the Web address suffix which identifies the activity of the domain holder or their geographical whereabouts.A House of Representatives committee ...

  • Weil Gotshal boost

    31-Mar-1998

    US firm Weil Gotshal & Manges has boosted its central and eastern European practice with the appointment of US lawyer Eric Rosedale and UK lawyer Simon Swycher. Rosedale joins from the New York office of Jones Day Reavis & Pogue, while Swycher was with

  • Welsh law and language

    31-Mar-1998

    As the author of Termau Cyfraith/Legal Terms (1972), and subsequently Geiriadur y Gyfraith/The Legal Dictionary (English Welsh) (1992), together with its supplement (1996), it is gratifying to have discovered that the 1992 Dictionary is now out of print.In consequence, the publishers (Gomer Press) have requested me to undertake the task of preparing a brand new edition of the Dictionary, incorporating the contents of the supplement, together ...

  • What price the pursuit of fiscal crime?

    31-Mar-1998

    John Rhodes believes the British government should think twice before attempting to extend money laundering legislation to fiscal offences in offshore jurisdictions. John Rhodes is a partner at city law firm Macfarlanes.No-one objects to laws which help to identify and thwart drug barons. But by planning to introduce legislation against money laundering in offshore islands, ...

  • When ignorance is no defence

    31-Mar-1998

    Roger Pearson looks at a High Court ruling which has serious implications for those considering a managerial role in publishing . A recent High Court ruling is being viewed as a major legal disincentive for businessmen to give financial backing to publishing enterprises. The ruling upheld a £2,000 fine imposed on the managing director of a national business newspaper after it identified a rape victim.Media lawyer and solicitor advocate David Price, who represented ...

  • Who needs to know?

    31-Mar-1998

    Daniel Hochberg says regulating trustees obligations to beneficiaries poses a number of problems. Daniel Hochberg is a barrister at 9 Old Square.Practising trust lawyers in offshore jurisdictions should not be surprised by the English Court of Appeal's recent observation in Armitage v Nurse (1997) that there is an irreducible core of obligations owed by the trustees to the beneficiaries, the enforcement of which is fundamental.Similar things ...

  • Whose name is it anyway?

    31-Mar-1998

    Sarah ahmed says that recent attempts to stamp out domain name trafficking could have serious consequences for some innocent Internet users. Sarah Ahmed is head of the commercial department at Anthony Gold Lerman & Muirhead. Trafficking in domain names, the latest menace to hit the Internet, has been brought to a screeching halt by Jonathan Sumption QC's decision to grant the plaintiffs summary judgment in British Telecommunications & ors v One in a Million & ors (1997).

  • Wilde Sapte homes in on teleworking for partners

    31-Mar-1998

    WILDE Sapte will decide next month whether it is to introduce the option of teleworking to all fee earners at its London premises.The commercial firm has been running a pilot scheme since January whereby 10 members of staff, including two partners and the IT and marketing directors, have been working from home on either a part-time or a full-time basis.The purpose of the pilot is to ensure the technology works and to establish and understand the range ...