4 October 1999

The Lawyer

  • ...as duty solicitors threaten LAB with strike over triple time demand

    5-Oct-1999

    Duty solicitors are threatening to strike on new year's eve unless the Legal Aid Board agrees to pay them at least three times their normal fees.The Criminal Law Solicitors Association (CLSA) is demanding a meeting with the LAB at which it will call for the extra cash.CLSA chairman Franklin Sinclair says: "If the LAB won't fork out the extra money there's going to be a backlash from solicitors and they won't go out."But the LAB ...

  • ...as rival Eversheds joins RDA panel

    5-Oct-1999

    Eversheds has been appointed to the East Midlands Development Agency (EMDA) legal panel following a competitive tender.The legal panel will be instructed to provide practical advice and guidance to the EMDA. The contract will be for two years.Brandon Smith-Hilliard, a partner at Eversheds' Nottingham office, says: "The legal advice sought from the regional development agencies ...

  • 1 Crown Office appoints ex-Druces & Attlee chief

    5-Oct-1999

    Bob Wilson is to become chambers director at 1 Crown Office Row after leaving his post as chief operating officer of city firm Druces & Attlee.Wilson left Druces & Attlee in March with a mutually agreed redundancy settlement.Wilson's appointment marks the completion of a programme of restructuring at 1 Crown Office Row which began last year with the recruitment of a senior clerk, Matthew Phipps.In the past, a number of other chambers that have ...

  • 7 ways lawyers can manipulate their ch'i

    5-Oct-1999

    1The direction a building faces is crucial as it sets the energy levels for the whole firm. It should be aligned to one of the four optimum directions of the managing partner or whoever is the ultimate head of the organisation.2 A firm's building should also have or be near a spire or dome as these are shapes most sympathetic to the legal profession and will help increase energy levels within the building.3 Do not move into a building ...

  • 70 per cent vote to scrap SIF

    5-Oct-1999

    Solicitors have voted overwhelmingly for the right to insure themselves on the open market and end the monopoly of the Solicitors Indemnity Fund (SIF).In a ballot of the whole profession, 19,795 solicitors 70.4 per cent of those who voted elected to end SIF's monopoly, against 29.6 per cent (8,303), who voted against an open market option.Almost one in three Law Society members voted on the issue. The Law Society spent around u35,000 on the nationwide vote ...

  • A&O boosts its Hungarian presence

    5-Oct-1999

    Allen & Overy is aiming to take on Cameron McKenna and Clifford Chance inHungary by expanding its Budapest office.The firm has added four lawyers, including three senior lateral Hungarian appointments. The expansion coincides with Jonathan Porteus and Eva Hegedus' promotions to ...

  • An inn of court

    5-Oct-1999

    An Islington pub is at the centre of a pending High Court confrontation between Lady Jane Blom-Cooper and the borough council. Lady Jane claims that she bought the u300,000 Southgate Arms in July 1998 with the intention of turning it into a private home. In a writ against the council, she claims that searches prior to the deal going through failed to reveal that the property had been included in the Arlington Square Conservation Area in 1994. She accuses the council of breaching ...

  • Andrew Walker

    4-Oct-1999

    Abigail Townsend talks to senior partner at Lovell White Durrant Andrew Walker, whose retirement plans have been put on hold because of the firm’s merger with Boesebeck Droste.

  • Barclays halves its legal panel

    5-Oct-1999

    Barclays is tearing its corporate recovery panel in half blaming diminished business for the reduction.The panel currently consists of 13 firms but is expected to be slashed to between just four to six practices in a process which will be completed by the end of June.William Lewis, head of legal services (recovery), says: "Due to the state of the economy we do not have as many recoveries as before."He adds: "This means the work is being spread too ...

  • Bird & Bird's Little migrates to Kemp & Co

    5-Oct-1999

    Top IT firm Kemp & Co is celebrating its first year in practice by poaching lawyer Jonathon Little from Bird & Bird.Managing partner Richard Kemp says: "Jonathon's arrival significantly builds our capability in our core commercial and regulatory practice area."The appointment of Little, who joins the niche IT and communications firm as a partner, caps a successful first ...

  • British legal team saves Trinidad trio from death row

    5-Oct-1999

    CLIFFORD Chance and Collyer-Bristow have achieved a rare legal feat by having the death sentences against three men quashed by the Privy Council.Katy-Marie Wilson, of Clifford Chance, and Clive Woolf, of Collyer-Bristow, represented the trio, who were on death row waiting to be hanged after being convicted in Trinidad of shooting another man in 1992.An appeal to Trinidad's ...

  • Can lawyers manage?

    5-Oct-1999

    He has had enough. Two-and-a-half years into a four-year term Theodore Goddard's managing partner Peter Kavanagh has called time on being both a lawyer and a manager and returned to full-time fee earning.Kavanagh tells The Lawyer (see City Profile, page 17) that he planned to split the management and legal role 50-50, but looking back, he says, "it was clear relatively early on that I was going to find that difficult". In short, it all got too much.Theodore ...

  • CC Brussels arm poaches Stibbe Simont partner

    5-Oct-1999

    Clifford Chance's Brussels office has poached a partner from a top Belgian-Dutch firm.Axel Miller joins Clifford Chance's Belgian law practice as a partner from Stibbe Simont Monahan Duhot.Miller is a corporate lawyer whose expertise includes acquisitions, IPOs and business reorganisations. He was a partner at Stibbe Simont from 1996 and was a member of the executive ...

  • CC lawyers want extra millennium's eve cash...

    5-Oct-1999

    Clifford Chance lawyers are in negotiation with bosses over getting extra cash if they are stuck working on deals as the new millennium is rung in.A spokesman for the firm confirms that people will be in the office at midnight on 31 December IT staff as well as lawyers, if required."If that's what the client wants, that's what the client will get," says Tom Rose, ...

  • CGU pays panel firms below the going rate

    5-Oct-1999

    Insurance giant CGU is paying some of the law firms on its panel as little as u90 per hour about u30 below the going rate, it is being claimed.Reliable sources tell The Lawyer it has been agreed that panel firms will receive u90 per hour regardless of the lawyer's seniority.And each time the firms receive u250,000 worth of work, CGU requires a "free" lawyer, for example a paralegal, to go in-house to assist, it is claimed.CGU denies the claims, ...

  • Chinese take away foreign firm rules

    5-Oct-1999

    The Chinese Ministry of Justice has pledged to allow law firms to open in more than one city a move which will see City firms flock there in order to take advantage of an expanding legal market.The China Ministry says it will lift the geographichal restrictions on law firms when China joins the World Trade Organisation.Currently, foreign law firms are allowed only one office in China.Firms say this will kick-start China's legal market. And if ...

  • Clare Short's son made TJG partner

    5-Oct-1999

    The son that cabinet minister Clare Short gave away for adoption as a baby is among the raft of year-end internal partner promotions announced last week.Toby Graham, who was reunited with Short in 1996, becomes a commercial litigation partner at Taylor Joynson Garrett along with Simon Lovell (banking).Simmons & Simmons has 10 new internal partners, making a total of 147 partners. In London, they are Colin Mercer (banking/cap mark), Charles Fuller (corp fin), ...

  • Clarke Willmott elects litigation head to top post as it boosts partner numbers

    5-Oct-1999

    South west firm Clarke Willmott & Clarke has elected a managing partner and promoted seven new partners to the practice.David Sedgwick, a partner at the firm since 1980 and head of the litigation department, will take over as managing partner from Tony Monds. Monds will retire from the firm this month.Sedgwick, based at the firm's head office in Bristol, says: "We have ...

  • Collyer-Bristow escapes damages for negligence

    5-Oct-1999

    City practice Collyer-Bristow and leading divorce barrister Martin Pointer QC have successfully defended a negligence action brought by a former client.The client, Corrine Green, claimed that she should have been advised to accept a settlement offer made by her former husband during her divorce proceedings.Green rejected the offer which included a house valued at u281,000 plus a u50,000 cash payment.While the presiding judge, Mr Justice Douglas Brown, ...

  • DAC culls Manchester property arm

    5-Oct-1999

    Davies Arnold Cooper is continuing to strip back its Manchester office by closing its property department.The closure comes just two months after the firm's entire construction team left to join Hammond Suddards. (The Lawyer, 15 March).At the time of the departures Phil Jepson, managing partner at Davies Arnold Cooper's Manchester office, said construction, property and litigation were the firm's core businesses.However, commenting ...

  • Depressing tally of complaints

    5-Oct-1999

    The annual report of the Office for the Supervision of Solicitors for 1997/98 makes depressing reading.In the past five years, the number of complaints averaged 22,764 each year. With 8,764 firms, that was about 2.6 complaints per firm per annum.However, the OSS estimates that there will be 30,000 new complaints this year.That increases the average to 3.4 per firm per annum. As most firms never receive a complaint at ...

  • Digest

    5-Oct-1999

    The results of a Law Society ballot of its 94,000 members on whether or not to retain the Solicitors' Indemnity Fund monopoly will be released on The Lawyer's website today (www.the-lawyer.co.uk) but don't expect the Law Society to do anything about it. The society is not bound by the ballot, which cost an estimated u35,000.

  • Digest

    5-Oct-1999

    Solicitor-advocate John Mackenzie claims High Court judge Mr Justice Ian Kennedy discriminated against him because he is not a barrister. The judge is refusing to step down from the case despite Mackenzie's accusations of intimidating behaviour, petulance, boredom and terrifying a witness. Mackenzie, who is representing Doug and Patricia Buchanan, inventors of a type of life-saving body armour, says the judge constantly interrupted him, threw down a file, and displayed antipathy ...

  • Digest

    5-Oct-1999

    The army is facing accusations that it told a female lance-corporal to have an abortion or leave her job. Nina Middlemass (left), who is being represented by barrister Paul Cape of Milburn House Chambers, claims that victimisationand sex discrimination is endemic in the army, and told an employment tribunal at Newcastle upon Tyne: "It was made perfectly clear to me that if I remained in the army with a child then [my] life would be made difficult." The hearing continues.

  • DPP defends rights of racist CPS staff

    5-Oct-1999

    Director of Public Prosecutions David Calvert-Smith has suggested that the Crown Prosecution Service cannot afford to sack talented staff even if they are racist.Calvert-Smith told a Law Society ethnic minorities meeting last week that he did not want to dismiss staff "out of hand" even if they had offended in some way.When Maria Bamieh, currently awaiting an employment tribunal ruling on her claim of racial discrimination against the CPS, asked why people with ...

  • Eversheds partner joins Govt financing agency

    5-Oct-1999

    Eversheds litigation partner Nicholas Ridley has left the firm's London office to become the new general counsel of a powerful government department involved with major international financing deals.Ridley takes up his new position as general counsel of the Export Credits Guarantee Department (ECGD) on 14 June.Ridley, who will also be joining ECGD's management board, ...

  • Ex in-house lawyer starts recruitment firm

    5-Oct-1999

    A FORMER head of legal at a nuclear generating company has set up her own recruitment business.Elizabeth Warner-Smith is launching legal recruitment consultancy Summit Legal after taking a seven-month career break to look after her baby son.Warner-Smith was formally head of legal services at Magnox Electric.She says: "I didn't go back to work [at Magnox] because I fancied a new challenge, something totally different, but at the same time, dealing ...

  • Finance

    5-Oct-1999

    Corporate finance partner at SJ Berwin & Co Jonathan Blake

  • Financing

    5-Oct-1999

    Nick Gould

  • Financing

    5-Oct-1999

    Norton Rose advised Midland Bank on the first project financing of a high voltage electricity interconnector from the UK

  • First managing partner for Paisners as it reviews setup

    5-Oct-1999

    City firm Paisner & Co has appointed its first managing partner.Stephen Rosefield, a partner for more than 20 years in the company and commercial department, is taking up the new position in the 52-partner firm.There will be no change in the role of the senior partner, a post currently held by Harold Paisner.Rosefield's appointment follows a management review conducted over the past two years.The review also abolishes the existing ...

  • Herbert Smith defies exodus from Russia

    5-Oct-1999

    Herbert Smith will open its Moscow office in June, as first revealed in The Lawyer (15 February).The two-partner, six-lawyer office will be headed by energy partner Alan Jowett, head of the central and east European group.The office will focus on energy and natural resources at first. The Lawyer understands the initial reason for opening the office is to serve existing Herbert Smith clients with interests in Russia.Jowett says: "We have been greatly ...

  • High-flying partners call for LLP safety net

    10-Oct-1999

    IT IS the disaster scenario. A partner is found to be negligent, and the firm's other partners - who had nothing to do with the original case - discover their personal assets are liable as compensation.Professional partnerships - particularly the big accountancy firms, but also law firms - have for some time been seeking legislation to protect them from this situation through the creation of limited liability partnerships (LLPs).LLPs protect partners' ...

  • In brief: 1 Pump Court

    5-Oct-1999

    1 Pump Court has launched an All Issues Mediation Service through its family group. The mediators are Jennie Boswell, Sally Bradley, Rosalind Carne, Charlotte Friedman and Jane Hoyal, who are all associate members of the UK College of Family Mediators.

  • In brief: Foot & Bowden

    5-Oct-1999

    Foot & Bowden legal executive Malcolm Stewart has pleaded guilty at Plymouth Magistrates' Court to theft. The charges relate to u656,000 taken from clients. He asked for 63 other offences to be taken into consideration Stewart worked for the Plymouth firm for 17 years.

  • In brief: Fuglers' former legal

    5-Oct-1999

    Fuglers' former legal executive Michael Landon has been jailed for four years after being convicted at Southwark Crown Court. The charges related to theft of client money totalling £600,000 from the West End firm. Landon admitted 52 further offences which were taken into consideration.

  • In brief: Holman Fenwick & Willan

    5-Oct-1999

    Holman Fenwick & Willan, one of the country's leading shipping firms, has made up eight new partners to bring its partner total to 79. Five with specialisations ranging from marine and admiralty law to reinsurance, commercial litigation and international trade law will be based in the London office. Two marine and commercial litigators make partner in the Hong Kong office and a banking and shipping finance specialist is based in the firm's associated office in Piraeus, Greece. ...

  • In brief: Lovell White Durrant

    5-Oct-1999

    Lovell White Durrant has become the fourth UK firm to open an office in Washington DC after Clifford Chance, Cameron McKenna, Freshfields and Linklaters. Lovells already has offices in New York and Chicago, and has put its Chicago partner Anne Fortney in charge of the Washington office, which will focus on consumer ...

  • In brief: McDermott Will & Emery

    5-Oct-1999

    McDermott Will & Emery, the US firm, has appointed Professor Abram Chayes, former legal adviser to the Kennedy administration, as international counsel based at its Boston office. Harvard law professor Chayes was an adviser during the Cuban missile crisis and represented Nicaragua against the US in the World Court over the Reagan administration's support for the Contra guerrillas.

  • In brief: Mishcon de Reya

    5-Oct-1999

    Mishcon de Reya partner Grant Gordon is acting for the current cricket world champions and the favourites to scoop the title when the Cricket World Cup starts at Lords on 14 May. Gordon is advising champions Sri Lanka, favourites South Africa, and the West Indies on sponsorship and players' contracts and IP rights. Denton Hall is acting for England.

  • In brief: Rowe & Maw

    5-Oct-1999

    Rowe & Maw has appointed four new partners: Rachel Brown who handles partnership and insolvency law; Andrew Briggs in litigation and dispute resolution; and David Chadwick and Keith Lyon, who deal with insurance, at the Lloyd's office. These follow the appointment of Anna Forge from Berwin Leighton and brings the total number of partners to 77.

  • In brief: The Central Criminal Court

    5-Oct-1999

    The Central Criminal Court has appointed two treasury counsel. Nicholas Loraine-Smith of 2 Harcourt Buildings, the chambers of Nigel Mylne QC, has been appointed Senior Treasury Counsel, while from Stephen Kramer QC's 1 Hare Court, Sallie Bennett-Jenkins has been appointed Junior Treasury Counsel.

  • Insurance trio form Euro-US alliance

    5-Oct-1999

    The first ever multinational insurance litigation partnership involving firms in Britain, the US and France has been set up.London firm Hextall Erskine has teamed up with US firm Clausen Miller PC and French firm LaGiraudiere Larroze & Associes to form Clausen Miller Europe.The partnership will have its headquarters in London. Lawyers from all three firms are also hoping to persuade firms in other European countries to join and have already begun talks.

  • Is the US pooling ban good for the UK?

    5-Oct-1999

    David Cheyne, head of M&A, LinklatersAndrew Harting, senior associate, Weil Gotshal & MangesMichael Goroff, partner, Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloyThe US Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) has voted to ban the pooling of interests ...

  • It's been a bad week for...

    5-Oct-1999

    The Church of England. Vicar William Harris is being sued by 90-year-old ex-nun Constance Madden over the disappearance of her u80,000 life savings. Madden claims Harris offered to help her fill in her tax form and then transferred the money into his bank account. If Harris loses he will be liable for a bill of more than u200,000.Campaigning. If you want to go far in the law then just say no when your local Amnesty International branch asks you to sell ...

  • It's been a good week for...

    5-Oct-1999

    1980s new romantics Spandau Ballet. Three Spandaus may face financial ruin after losing a court battle with songwriter Gary Kemp for a share of royalties worth u1m, but the band has found a new fan. Mr Justice Park, who presided over the case in the High Court, has been walking round his home whistling to the tunes Gold and True and told the court last week: "It's very good." That's consolation, then.Viagra. Manufacturer ...

  • IT's magic formula pays dividends

    5-Oct-1999

    Firms no longer see IT merely as a practice tool but as a way of offering their services online and maximising income, says Richard Susskind.Why are so many lawyers launching online legal services? What has happened in IT to make it possible?If we look back as much as 10 years, it is revealing that some of the enabling technologies then were every bit as sophisticated as today's.At that time, for example, I , ...

  • Jonathan Jeffries on rent issues for commercial premises

    5-Oct-1999

    Jonathan Jeffries is a partner in the corporate recovery group at Pinsent Curtis.The House of Lords has turned the tables on landlords of commercial premises who charge tenants high rents. The recent Park Air Service case gives commercial tenants the ability to avoid over-rented premises through disclaimers in liquidations, whether solvent or insolvent.The case involved the tenant renting premises with a market value of £35,000 at £160,000. ...

  • Lawyers swap firms as med neg panel regime kicks in

    5-Oct-1999

    Hundreds of lawyers are being forced to jump ship as time runs out for the vast majority of firms allowed to handle legal aid clinical negligence cases.Two new panels of specialist practitioners will cut the number of firms that can take on such cases from about 3,200 last year to just 200 this year, under changes which were announced by the Lord Chancellor, Lord Irvine, last November.Non-specialist solicitors were prevented from handling legal aid cases from ...

  • Linklaters in-house shop offers essentials

    5-Oct-1999

    Linklaters is set to become the first law firm to open an in-house shop so staff do not have to leave the office for those little essentials.The move was prompted by the location of its One Silk Street headquarters in the Barbican's "concrete jungle", which is devoid of shops.Staff are said to be thrilled with the news as they usually have to sacrifice their lunch break ...

  • Litigation Personal Injury 10/5/99

    5-Oct-1999

    Walker v Nice (1999) QBD (Settled out of court) 16 March 1999Plaintiff: Male, divorced, 31 years old at date of accident; 35 years old at date of settlement.Incident: The plaintiff was injured on 8 September 1994 when his car collided with the defendant's, who had been driving on the wrong side of the road. While the defendant's insurer took responsibility for the crash, it disputed that the accident had caused the plaintiff's ...

  • Litigation Writs 10/5/99

    5-Oct-1999

    A doctor who was convicted of causing death by dangerous driving in January 1994 is facing a High Court compensation claim. The action has been launched by three survivors of the accident, in which one person died. Keith Wells, Michelle Thorpe and Kieran Thorpe, suing through his mother Michelle Thorpe, have issued a writ against Dr Joseph Addy seeking damages for the crash, which took place on the A142 Soham bypass on 5 September 1993. Wells and his passengers ...

  • Lovells wins tax battle for British Steel

    5-Oct-1999

    Lovell White Durrant, acting on behalf of British Steel, has notched up a u40m victory against the tax man.After a protracted legal battle dating back to the early 1990s the Appeal Court has ruled that Customs & Excise must pay back to British Steel u25m taken in oil excise duty.The Lovells team thinks that, with interest, this will add up to a total payout of about u40m.The court held that Customs was wrong to insist that for years British Steel ...

  • Makeovers won't help firms with takeovers

    5-Oct-1999

    The big firms are turning to Oriental philosophy to help them reshape their workplaces. The latest breed of consultants to march through the partners' boardroom are the interior designers. With their talk of space, light, hot desking and even ch'i, they are trying to get lawyers to take a more holistic view of their business. And the message is reaching a receptive audience.A holistic view of the office is one thing but a holistic view of legal business ...

  • Manches drops '& Co' for slimline look

    5-Oct-1999

    First cameron mcKenna fiddled with its capitals, then edge ellison dropped its (capital) e's.Now Manches & Co is taking the bold step of modernising its image by dropping the '& Co' from its name. The firm will now be known simply as Manches.Alasdair Simpson, Manches' senior partner, says: "It is complementary to a modern forward-thinking business like ours."According to a Manches spokesman, changes to the Guide to the Conduct ...

  • Media freedom threatens welfare

    5-Oct-1999

    President of the High Court Family Division Sir Stephen Brown has given important new guidance on the rights of the courts to intervene in media coverage concerning children in care.He has made it clear that if the media overstep the mark in the way they cover such stories then the courts are in a position to curb their activities.Barrister David Spicer, acting as assistant head of legal services for Nottingham Council, says Sir Stephen's decision, ...

  • Moving into the space age

    5-Oct-1999

    Redesigning offices with a new sense of harmony is all the rage and some firms are even turning to feng shui. Chris Dignan reports.The image of a partner cocooned in an expansive oak-panelled office, protected by a secretary outside acting as gatekeeper is set to change.If some consultants have their way, the next generation of law offices will focus on a light, ergonomic environment of living workspaces, with network sockets for laptops, mobile phones replacing ...

  • MPs back The Lawyer over Access to Justice campaign

    5-Oct-1999

    Labour MPs have backed The Lawyer's legal aid campaign in the House of Commons debate on the Access to Justice Bill.Both South Derbyshire MP Mark Todd and Hendon MP Andrew Dismore referred in the debate to The Lawyer's campaign, which highlights personal injury cases which may not be eligible for legal aid under the new regime.Todd said: "I am concerned that in considering the bill without a proper framework to establish how exceptions are dealt with, ...

  • New leadership at Hill Taylors following partner defections

    5-Oct-1999

    City firm Hill Taylor Dickinson is entering a new era with fresh blood in the key positions of chairman and managing partner.Robert Wallis has been elected chairman and Rhys Clift managing partner. But they will continue fee-earning work in shipping, insurance and reinsurance.They will be charged with the job of raising the firm's profile following a series of defections over the past two years.Outgoing chairman, John Pople, has relinquished ...

  • New roads into northern Europe

    5-Oct-1999

    Virginia Ginnane explores the latest links between UK and Scandinavian law firms.When the Oresund Bridge, spanning the eponymous Strait from Malmo to Copenhagen, opens in June next year, it will not only staple Denmark to its northern Scandinavian neighbours, but it will also open Scandinavia to a wider and increasingly integrated Europe. The time for legal business to grow within Scandinavia is ripe.Leslie Perrin, managing partner of

  • Nicholsons poaches IP partner

    5-Oct-1999

    Nicholson Graham & Jones has recruited a partner from intellectual boutique firm Maycocks, saying that further lateral hires will follow.Maycocks is now left with only one senior partner, John Maycock, an assistant and one fee earner.Maycock says his firm will make an announcement in the near future, but he refuses to comment on the direction the firm would take.He says of the move: "Peter felt his future was not with a small firm."McBride ...

  • Ocean Group

    4-Oct-1999

    Ocean Group's legal department has been a busy place since Ian Goulden took over as its head three years ago. His appointment came as the company began a phase of international expansion that has seen it spend £363m on acquisitions since the beginning of 1997.

  • Oppenhoffs considers top level restructure

    5-Oct-1999

    Linklaters & Alliance's German firm Oppenhoff & Radler is to vote this week on a major restructuring plan, in an effort to streamline its management and "come closer" to its Alliance partners.The firm will make a decision whether to move to a single managing partner on 15 May, when its 116 partners meet at their six-monthly meeting. Currently, the firm operates under the "gischaeftsfuehrungsausschuss" ...

  • Partners on the move

    5-Oct-1999

    Masons has announced the following promotions to partner status: Andrew Ray, Alastair Crellin, Angela Cha, Jo Eames, Howard Crossman and Winnie Lai.Edwin Coe has appointed four new partners. David Kinch, formerly of Browne Jacobson, and Anthony Murray, who is qualified in both England and ...

  • Pinsent Curtis hires local govt head to vie for public sector...

    5-Oct-1999

    Pinsent Curtis has taken on an in-house lawyer to challenge Eversheds' national dominance in public sector work.Pinsents has hired chief solicitor Nicholas Dobson from Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council to fill the tailor-made post of head of local government.Top public sector partner Stephen Cirell of Eversheds admits that in the long term, and with the right resources, ...

  • Property

    5-Oct-1999

    Cameron McKenna partner David Saunders led the property group on three high profile development deals in the Thames Valley, for John Laing Property (JLPL). The first deal saw JLPL buy sites to develop two offices in Reading. Travers Smith Braithwaite acted for the vendor, Deramore Property Group. The second transaction saw JLPL purchase a 14.7 acre site in Bicester, with

  • Pros and cons

    5-Oct-1999

    A number of things about the letter from solicitors Park Fallon & Co struck Michael Horwood, senior partner with Sidmouth firm Ford Simey Dowe Roberts, as strange.For a start, it concerned an unusual case involving the disputed ownership of a rare film documenting the life of Charlie Chaplin which was up for sale at Christie’s.Second, the standard declamation “regulated by the Law Society in the conduct of investment business” was missing from the bottom ...

  • Quote of the week

    5-Oct-1999

    "A group of highly intelligent, highly opinionated, high-ego, high-intensity professionals, all of whom think they know best."Temporal Managing Consultants' David Temporal on the type of people a non-lawyer manager is likely to face.

  • Rushing to stake a claim?

    5-Oct-1999

    The Brits are shy, reserved and cautious. The Americans are loud, brash and ambitious. The stereotypes are well rehearsed and, aside from politics, nowhere more so than in the law. But in the case of UK firms in the US, the stereotype is strangely accurate.The focus in recent months has been either on US-UK mergers or on the influx of US firms into Europe, but since the mid Seventies, UK firms have been quietly setting up shop over the water. But this is not a beachhead ...

  • Search for common ground over easement

    5-Oct-1999

    Property sales in some areas are being affected by inflated fees for access across council land, as Roger Pearson reveals.A practice which is affecting the sale of top residential properties that can only be accessed via common land is set to undergo a major challenge in court.Frustrated homeowners in Surrey, led by Woking estate agents Waterfall Durrant and Barclay are seeking counsel's opinion on the matter which is likely to have ...

  • Square Mile

    5-Oct-1999

    The professional indemnity saga takes another turn this week when the outcome of the recent ballot of all solicitors is announced. As a supporter of the proposal to permit solicitors to insure through the market, I do not share the views expressed in this column some weeks ago (29 March) by Lord Hunt of Wirral, but this is not the time to debate the issue yet again. The interesting question now will be the reaction of the Law Society leadership.We have had conflicting ...

  • Temple Gardens poaches Dentons marketing chief

    5-Oct-1999

    A leading civil and commercial chambers has poached Denton Hall's director of business development to be its first chambers director.2 Temple Gardens will be joined by Elizabeth Rantzen at the beginning of June.The loss of Rantzen is a blow to Denton Hall, which does not plan to replace her immediately. Initial day to day responsibility will be given to the business development manager Maddie Grindal.Alexander Layton QC, of the chambers' ...

  • The eight regional development agencies

    5-Oct-1999

    The East Midlands Development Agency is one of eight regional development agencies (RDAs) established under the Regional Development Agencies Act 1998.The other seven are: South East Development Agency, One North East, North West Development Agency, South West of England Development Agency, East of England Development Agency, Yorkshire Forward and Advantage West Midlands.Nabarro ...

  • The Firm

    5-Oct-1999

    Minutes of a recent management meeting at The Firm between Jack Pratchard, senior partner, and Tom Henderson, managing partner.Pratchard: A splendid day. Those damned bean counters put in their place at last. Top five global law firm in five years, my arse! It says here Arnheim Tite & Lewis are in disarray after losing six partners and poor old Garretts are "reeling" after losing a senior partner to some Northern firm.Henderson: ...

  • The Lawyer Inquiry: Susannah Williams was born in 1970 in Epsom, Surrey. She is a commercial litigation solicitor at Richards Butler.

    5-Oct-1999

    What was your first job?Newspaper girl, a job from which I got sacked.What subject(s) did you fail at school?Art. I was "seriously discouraged" from taking it for 'O' Level.What was your first ever salary as a lawyer?u17,000 or thereabouts.What would you have done if you hadn't been a lawyer?Become a foreign correspondent on The Times ...

  • Trust plans loans for CFAs

    5-Oct-1999

    The Disabilities Trust is planning to lend money to lawyers in a ground-breaking credit scheme due to concern that the Woolf reforms and conditional fee arrangements will scare lawyers away from brain injury cases.The Trust the largest provider of brain injury rehabilitation in Europe fears lawyers may fail to carry out thorough investigations under government pressure to cut costs. In particular, legal adviser Frederick Holding is concerned firms will baulk at doing vital ...

  • Uncertain partnerships

    5-Oct-1999

    A recent case has, for the first time, forced the courts to consider whether religion should be a decisive factor when placing children with foster parents and how far the wishes of the natural parents should be taken into consideration in respect of their children's religious up-bringing.An eight-year-old girl, known as "N" and who suffers from Downs' Syndrome, was placed with foster parents when she was just 17 months old because ...

  • US and City firms win game, set and match

    5-Oct-1999

    A group of law firms advised on a tennis sponsorship and marketing deal worth u750m. The deal is believed to be the biggest ever tennis deal to date.A team of City, US, independent and in-house lawyers advised ATP Tour and Super 9 tournaments on the deal. The Association for Tennis Professionals (ATP) is the governing body for men's professional tennis.Swiss-based International Sports and Leisure (ISL) is set to pay u75m per annum for the next decade for ...