5 December 2005

The Lawyer

  • 199 Strand set to dissolve in February

    5-Dec-2005

    199 Strand has become the largest-ever civil set to break up, citing the pressures of competition, consolidation and less litigation as causes.

  • A bevvy of Brits

    5-Dec-2005

    News has reached Tulkinghorn recently that several of Morrison & Foerster's US partners were shocked by their London partners' staggering capacity for alcoholic consumption during a recent party. Clearly they need to spend more time in the UK.

  • A&O suffers further loss as finance star joins Skadden

    5-Dec-2005

    Skadden" /Allen & Overy (A&O) has suffered its seventh partner resignation this year as finance partner Clive Wells quits for Skadden Arps Slate Meagher ...

  • Apil set for fight on Compensation Bill

    5-Dec-2005

    An unlikely alliance between lawyers and politicians is setting out to challenge the Government's draft Compensation Bill ahead of its passage through Parliament.

  • Appeal ruling rocks direct access

    5-Dec-2005

    The future of the bar's direct access scheme has been thrown into uncertainty by a Court of Appeal ruling handed down on Friday (2 December).

  • Ashurst loses three lawyers to Latham in Munich swoop

    5-Dec-2005

    Latham & Watkins has raided Ashurst's Munich office to hire three lawyers, including private equity heavyweight Jörg Kirchner, to launch its own local presence.

  • Ashurst, Fried Frank, Travers scoop NTL/Virgin roles

    5-Dec-2005

    Ashurst, Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson and Travers Smith are celebrating after landing roles to advise NTL on its £817m bid for Virgin Mobile.Virgin Mobile, which floated on the London Stock Exchange last year, confirmed this morning (5 December) that the company has received an approach from NTL. According ...

  • Aussie govt uses Skadden on Telstra sale

    5-Dec-2005

    Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom has scooped the role of international adviser to the Australian government on the sale of its remaining stake in telecommunications giant Telstra.

  • AWG case delayed after Court orders judge change

    6-Dec-2005

    The start of the trial over AWG’s £130m claim against Sir Fraser Morrison has been delayed after the Court of Appeal yesterday (5 December) ordered judge Mr Justice Evans-Lombe to recuse himself.

  • AWG looks to Herbies as Morrison Construction purchase goes sour

    5-Dec-2005

    Herbert Smith is facing up to Dechert and Olswang as the long-awaited case between AWG and Sir Fraser Morrison kicks off in the High Court today (5 December).

  • B&M's Asian offices moot bird flu barriers

    5-Dec-2005

    Baker & McKenzie (B&M) has put bird flu high on its global executive meeting agenda amid its staff's growing concern of a pandemic.

  • Baker Botts chief to head safety committee for BP

    5-Dec-2005

    Baker Botts has secured its place as a key adviser to BP following the appointment of name partner James Baker to lead a US safety advisory committee to the oil giant.

  • Becker Büttner Held opens in Cologne

    5-Dec-2005

    Becker Büttner Held (BBH) is launching an outpost in Cologne, giving the firm its fifth office. Tax adviser and auditor Jürgen Gold and partner Christian Jung will move from the Munich office to lead the operation. BBH already has three offices in Germany - Berlin, Marburg and Munich - and a practice in Vienna.

  • Bingham merges with DC telecoms powerhouse

    8-Dec-2005

    Bingham McCutchen is to complete its sixth merger in nine years, taking over Washington DC-based telecommunications specialist Swidler Berlin.

  • Bond Pearce boosts banking and restructuring

    5-Dec-2005

    Bond Pearce has hired Adrian Owen as a partner in its banking and restructuring team. He joins from the Treasury Solicitor, where he was head of the companies and regulation team. Owen, who has been leading a team working on public interest insolvency, judicial review, competition and regulatory issues, will be based in the Southampton office.

  • Careers: In brief

    5-Dec-2005

    Dr Robert Briner, the outgoing chairman of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) International Court of Arbitration, has been honoured with a 'Liber Amicorum' (Book of Friends). Briner was presented with the book, which includes 65 articles written by members of the ICC Court, its Secretariat and others who have known Briner during his career, at the Pavillon Gabriel in Paris. The book, entitled Global Reflections on International Law, Commerce and Dispute Resolution, covers topics ...

  • Careers: People

    5-Dec-2005

    Exeter firm Stones has promoted James Eveling to the partnership. Eveling joined the corporate commercial team in 2004. He previously worked for Australian firm Nova Legal and Advisory.

  • CC matches Cravath associate bonuses

    7-Dec-2005

    Clifford Chance has announced that it is to match the benchmark year-end bonus rates set by its US competitors Cravath Swaine & Moore and Sullivan & Cromwell.

  • Clarity on clearance

    5-Dec-2005

    Jade Murray & Madeleine Cox provide the latest on the moral hazard provisions

  • Coat of charms

    5-Dec-2005

    A good time was had by all at a recent party hosted by Denton Wilde Sapte for its Gulf practice. Well, nearly all.

  • Confusion continues as FRS5 tax burden is spread

    6-Dec-2005

    Many law firms were celebrating this morning after the chancellor, Gordon Brown, relaxed the rules relating to a major tax uplift in his pre-Budget statement. However, the position of larger or more profitable firms was still unclear. The additional tax liability had been created by changes to the way professional partnerships account for revenue and work in progress. It was first highlighted in a note from the Accounting Standards Board in December 2003, Application Note G to ...

  • Cravath sets static bonus trend

    6-Dec-2005

    Cravath, Swaine & Moore has set the tone for year-end bonuses in the US,awarding associates unchanged figures between $30,000 and $60,000. Senior associates at the Wall Street heavyweight will take home $60,000 whenthe bonuses are paid on 16 December, equal to last year’s maximum associate bonus. First-year associates will meanwhile receive $30,000. This is in line with the market and key competitor

  • Deals Comment

    5-Dec-2005

    Ashurst had reason to celebrate after the Competition Commission cleared the way for National Express Group (NEG) to bid for the Thameslink/Great Northern (TGN) rail franchise.

  • Deals round-up

    5-Dec-2005

    Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, led by corporate partner Gareth Stephenson, has advised Westbury on its takeover by Persimmon for £650m. The acquisition will strengthen Persimmon's position as one of the UK's leading housebuilders. Persimmon was advised by Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw.

  • Dewey hikes Italian offering with hire of local partner duo

    5-Dec-2005

    Dewey Ballantine has raided an Italian firm for two partners for its Milan office.

  • DLA Piper opens in Beijing with Coudert crew

    9-Dec-2005

    DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary is finally open for business in Beijing after the Chinese Ministry of Justice approved its licence application.

  • Dundas appoints new joint managing partners

    6-Dec-2005

    Dundas & Wilson (D&W) has appointed new managing partners Donald Shaw and Alan Campbell, to take effect from 1 May 2006.Shaw, who currently heads the firm’s real estate practice, and Campbell, responsible for the projects team, both sit on D&W’s management board. D&W chief executive Neil Cochran said the joint appointments reflected the firm’s dual approach to management.“Everyone ...

  • DWS advises DP World lenders on Islamic bond for P&O buyout

    5-Dec-2005

    Denton Wilde Sapte (DWS) has scooped a role advising the lenders on the innovative Islamic bond issue that will fund the P&O acquisition.

  • DWS doubles its presence in Abu Dhabi

    5-Dec-2005

    Denton Wilde Sapte (DWS) is ramping up its Abu Dhabi office in order to respond to the huge investment into the city by the sheikhdom's government.

  • DWS loses group head to Simmons

    5-Dec-2005

    Denton Wilde Sapte (DWS) has lost its 14th partner of the year with the departure of environment and safety specialist and departmental head Jacqui O’Keeffe.

  • DWS ponders LLP as BLP takes the plunge

    5-Dec-2005

    Berwin Leighton Paisner has agreed to convert to limited-liability partnership (LLP) status following a partnership vote on 31 October. The firm's conversion to LLP status was effective from 1 December. Meanwhile, Denton Wilde Sapte (DWS) has appointed PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) as its adviser as it too considers converting to LLP status, deferring its vote by almost a year. The law firm ...

  • Employee benefits

    5-Dec-2005

    Employees now hold all the cards in the recruitment process. Claire Cavanagh reports.

  • Financial services

    5-Dec-2005

    Today's financial services market is a vastly different animal from that of only a few years ago. The mortgage and insurance markets now fall within the remit of the FSA, while the Pensions Act 2004 has seen the replacement of the Occupational Pensions Regulatory Authority by the more powerful Pensions Regulator.

  • Firm profile: Matthew Arnold & Baldwin

    5-Dec-2005

    Joint managing partners: Iain Donaldson and Steven Mills Turnover: £11.5m Total number of partners: 22 Total number of fee-earners: 90 Main practice areas: Commercial litigation, banking, commercial property, corporate and commercial, residential property, tax, trusts and probate Key ...

  • Freshfields and OC scoop key roles on Friends Reunited deal

    7-Dec-2005

    Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Osborne Clarke have scooped roles on the acquisition of community website Friends Reunited by television broadcaster ITV.

  • Fried Frank raids rivals for London real estate launch

    5-Dec-2005

    Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson is launching its first London-based real estate capability following the hire of a team of lawyers from two of its key US competitors.

  • Gide duo elected to Paris bar

    5-Dec-2005

    Gide Loyrette Nouel partners Jean-Marie Burguburu and Olivier Cousi both triumphed in the Paris bar elections last month, bagging two of the 14 vacant council seats.

  • Global Graduates to audit diversity

    5-Dec-2005

    Global Graduates, the organisation that mentors students from disadvantaged and state school backgrounds, has launched a major audit of law firms' diversity policies.

  • Grapevine

    5-Dec-2005

    Calling all PRs. If you want to learn the art of bitching about departing partners, then Denton Wilde Sapte (DWS) is offering masterclasses.

  • Half of UK companies include arbitration clauses in contracts

    5-Dec-2005

    Companies in the UK are more likely than those in the rest of Europe to anticipate the use of arbitration in the event of a dispute.

  • Hays the new Driver at King & Spalding

    5-Dec-2005

    King & Spalding has elected product liability lawyer Robert Hays as the firm’s new chairman.

  • Hempsons adds healthcare ace to London office

    5-Dec-2005

    Hempsons has boosted the ranks of its London office with the hire of a healthcare specialist from Bevan Brittan. Christian Dingwall joins as a partner specialising in regulatory, compliance and indemnity issues in the public and private sectors. Hempsons is well known for its work in the healthcare sector and Dingwall joins a team of 103 lawyers specialising in this area.

  • Herbert Smith raids DWS for finance duo

    5-Dec-2005

    Herbert Smith has swooped on Denton Wilde Sapte's (DWS) acquisition finance team and hired two of the firm's remaining three leveraged specialists.

  • Herbies poaches Norton Rose finance star

    7-Dec-2005

    Herbert Smith’s burgeoning finance practice has raided Norton Rose for a new partner.

  • Herbies, Stibbe take on Tele Atlas global offer

    5-Dec-2005

    Herbert Smith and alliance partner Stibbe have scooped an instruction to advise Tele Atlas on its global offer and listing on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange.

  • Hot food and cold women

    5-Dec-2005

    One would think that associate pay and the retention of fee-earners would be among the most pressing issues facing managing partners of UK firms at the moment. Apparently not.During a recent meeting of six of the City's leading managing partners, the two hottest topics of conversation were the quality of in-house catering and what to do about difficult secretaries.Good to see they've got their priorities right.

  • Ince takes WFW shipping finance partner

    7-Dec-2005

    Ince & Co is steaming into shipping finance in Greece with a hire from rival Watson Farley & Williams.

  • International eye: Europe

    5-Dec-2005

    Matt Byrne on the month in Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg: Nauta Dutilh and De Brauw to consolidate in the Netherlands; Garrigues, Taylor Wessing and DLA Piper ramp up in Brussels ; Nabarros overhauls its European best friends network ; European Commission gives warning on entrance restrictions

  • International report: Van Bael & Bellis, Brussels

    5-Dec-2005

    Brussels-based Van Bael & Bellis has had a huge year to date, launching an appeal on behalf of Microsoft against one of the biggest competition rulings by the European Commission this decade.

  • Irwin Mitchell breaks new ground with Spanish launch

    9-Dec-2005

    Irwin Mitchell is launching its first ever overseas operation with the opening of offices in Marbella and Madrid.

  • Kilpatrick hires in NY as London shrinks

    5-Dec-2005

    Kilpatrick Stockton has bolstered its New York office with the hire of three partners. The recruits coincide with the conclusion of Kilpatrick’s dramatic downsizing of its London presence.

  • Law enforcement

    5-Dec-2005

    Several key cases have shaped the FSA's enforcement policies this year. Simon Hart and Rebecca Melling report

  • Lawyers and publishers team up to provide core legal texts

    5-Dec-2005

    A charitable initiative to divert second-hand law books around the world aims to replenish the Supreme Court of Grenada's law library following its destruction last year by Hurricane Ivan.

  • LDA fires starting gun on Olympics with new panel

    5-Dec-2005

    Long-awaited panel hands eighteen firms plum regeneration work; unsuccessful firms may appeal

  • Legal Widow

    5-Dec-2005

    "Right! That's it!" exclaimed the Lawyer, screwing up the fifth Christmas family newsletter we've received this week and aiming it at Liability's head. "I don't have to take this sort of thing. We're writing one and inflicting the same sort of pain on everyone else."

  • Lords hands government second terror defeat

    8-Dec-2005

    Birnberg Peirce, Birmingham firm Tyndallwoods and a host of barristers led by Matrix Chambers’ Ben Emmerson QC have scored a historic victory in the House of Lords over the use of evidence gained through torture.

  • Loyens targets Chinese market

    5-Dec-2005

    Benelux giant Loyens & Loeff has ramped up its focus on China with a series of seminars targeting inbound Chinese instructions.

  • Nabarros scoops former Lewis Silkin corporate head

    7-Dec-2005

    Lewis Silkin has lost its fourth partner in seven months as former corporate head Clare Grayston jumps ship to Nabarro Nathanson.

  • Nauta breaks lockstep for stars and underperformers

    5-Dec-2005

    Nauta Dutilh is to radically overhaul its lockstep system in an attempt to increase significantly the compensation it can offer its top-performing partners.

  • New chair at Arthur Cox as O'Dwyer quits

    6-Dec-2005

    Corporate partner Eugene McCague has been voted in as the new chair of Dublin giant Arthur Cox after current chair and head of corporate, James O’Dwyer, announced his intention to step down from both roles in April 2006.

  • New senior partner at Blake Lapthorn as PEP rockets 40 per cent

    6-Dec-2005

    South East firm Blake Lapthorn Linnell has elected Jonathan Lloyd-Jones as its new senior partner as its reports a 40 per cent rise in profit per equity partner

  • New Virgin Group GC to review panel

    5-Dec-2005

    Virgin Group is in the throes of a full-scale review of its external legal advisers.

  • No. 1 Serjeants Inn gets new base and name

    5-Dec-2005

    Professional negligence set No. 1 Serjeants Inn is moving into new premises in January and changing its name at the same time. The 37-strong chambers has been forced to leave its current building, off Fleet Street, which it used to share with law firm Dechert, due to redevelopment. Its new location - and name - will be 1 Chancery Lane.

  • On review

    5-Dec-2005

    The Strachan review will result in proper Chinese walls between the FSA’s Enforcement Division and the Regulatory Decisions Committee. By Charles Flint QC

  • Opinion

    5-Dec-2005

    The Company Law Reform Bill simplifies existing law and makes directors more accountable

  • Orrick continues French expansion

    7-Dec-2005

    Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe is continuing its acquisitive year in France with the hire of Coudert Brothers arbitration consultant William Craig as senior counsel.

  • Orrick doubles Paris headcount with Rambaud tie-up

    5-Dec-2005

    Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe last week (30 November) finalised its merger agreement with French independent Ram-baud Martel in a deal that will see 18 Rambaud partners join the US firm in January.

  • Paying the price

    5-Dec-2005

    The Pensions Regulator is getting tough on pensions black holes. Gary Cullen reports on the effects of its latest recommendations

  • Perrin quits Osborne Clarke

    6-Dec-2005

    Osborne Clarke senior partner Leslie Perrin has announced he is retiring from the partnership after 16 years with the firm.

  • Pinsents strengthens Asia with triple corporate boost

    5-Dec-2005

    Pinsent Masons has expanded its Asian operations, poaching two corporate heavyweights and a senior China-qualified lawyer for its Hong Kong and Shanghai offices.

  • Queen's wench

    5-Dec-2005

    The Herbert Smith press party the other day provided a chance to meet up with the great and the good of the City firm. One of the hot topics of the night was Herbies' imminent partnership retreat. But instead of looking forward to a few days out of the office, most partners were cursing the person who thought a golf club in Wales in November was a good idea.

  • Salans wins £800K costs from Saatchi Gallery eviction victory

    5-Dec-2005

    Salans has obtained £800,000 in costs from the High Court after its victory in ousting the Saatchi Gallery from London's County Hall.

  • Separated at birth

    5-Dec-2005

    The warm but patriarchal glint in the eye, the well-cut suit, the knowing smile… Patrick Boiron has been modelling himself on the quintessential Englishman, Steed from The Avengers, for so long that it was really only a matter of time before the Frenchman went the whole hog and joined a blueblood, thoroughbred English firm. Sadly, Slaughters wasn't hiring so he had to ...

  • Shearman secures lead role on Eutelsat's Euronext listing

    5-Dec-2005

    Shearman & Sterling has bagged the lead role on the forthcoming IPO of satellite operator Eutelsat on the Paris stock exchange Euronext.

  • Simmons extends life of split capital investments

    5-Dec-2005

    Simmons & Simmons has brought a new level of innovation into the organisation of split capital investment trusts with a new type of reconstruction.

  • Simmons, A&O win costs on Equitable

    5-Dec-2005

    Equitable Life has settled its outstanding litigation against nine former directors, with Allen & Overy (A&O) and Simmons & Simmons recovering their costs.

  • SJ Berwin breaks into Italy with double office opening

    5-Dec-2005

    SJ Berwin has confirmed its launch into the Italian market with the hire of private equity and acquisition finance heavyweight Alberto Morano and a team of three partners.

  • SJ Berwin senior partner race reaches climax

    7-Dec-2005

    SJ Berwin’s partners are to vote on the successor to senior partner David Harrell before the end of the week.

  • Slaughters in talks to offload Paris office to Bredin Prat

    8-Dec-2005

    Slaughter and May is locked in negotiations with Bredin Prat that may result in the City firm’s Paris arm move across to its French ally.

  • Slaughters picked by Brambles

    5-Dec-2005

    Slaughter and May has scooped an instruction over Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer to advise Australian logistics operator Brambles Industries on its plan to quit the London Stock Exchange and release at least A$2.8bn (£1.2bn) to shareholders through share buybacks.

  • Stephenson quits Norton Rose

    5-Dec-2005

    Norton Rose corporate finance star Barbara Stephenson is leaving the law for lifestyle reasons following 16 years as a partner at the firm. Stephenson resigned recently, having returned to practice earlier this year from an eight-month sabbatical. During her time in practice she led over 50 IPOs and 100 public takeovers. Corporate finance head Tim Marsden said Stephenson leaves a young and vibrant ...

  • Stewarts hire sees launch of divorce dept

    5-Dec-2005

    Niche litigation firm Stewarts is launching a divorce department.injury work and litigation.

  • Tax is the way to relax

    5-Dec-2005

    Overheard, one not-at-all jealous partner talking about his tax counterparts: "And they all retire at 43 because they know how to put their money to use."

  • The bar

    5-Dec-2005

    Joanne Harris on the bar in the last month: Barrister takes Bar Council to court over complaints-handling HM Revenue & Customs costs case threatens direct access Profession awaits new QC list Chambers make flurry of appointments

  • The big boys get aggressive

    5-Dec-2005

    At long last, the heavies have finally landed the debt finance partners they've been desperate for - and in both instances, they were former lateral movers.

  • The lock fakers

    5-Dec-2005

    Details of the Cheney pension scheme fraud highlight why the regulator needed a revamp. By Nick Moser and Emma Tracey

  • The sweetest feeling

    5-Dec-2005

    Following the recent diary story of the Addleshaws partner turned gin importer (7 November) comes this sweet story of two more City exiles.

  • The work-life quiz

    5-Dec-2005

    John Philip Greenfield, head of litigation, Carey Olsen

  • Thomas Eggar set for revenue hike

    5-Dec-2005

    South East firm Thomas Eggar is on target for a 22 per cent increase in turnover this year as it posts bumper half-year figures.

  • Turnover up 59 per cent at Watson Burton

    5-Dec-2005

    Watson Burton has seen its half-year turnover rocket by 59 per cent.

  • Van Doorne launches second Lovells raid in Amsterdam

    6-Dec-2005

    Dutch independent Van Doorne has raided Lovells for the second time this year, this time to strengthen its real estate practice.

  • Victoria Cochrane: Ernst & Young

    5-Dec-2005

    After settling the £2.6bn Equitable claim against it, Ernst & Young is now spearheading the fight to limit auditors’ liability. Joanne Harris meets the accounting firm’s general counsel

  • Waterstones-Ottakar's referred to Competition Commission

    6-Dec-2005

    The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has referred the anticipated merger of bookstore chains Waterstones and Ottakar's to the Competition Commission.

  • Weil boosts Paris finance with senior A&O hire

    7-Dec-2005

    Allen & Overy (A&O) is losing its Paris leveraged finance head Jonathan Nabarro to Weil Gotshal & Manges.

  • Who's the real deal?

    5-Dec-2005

    When it comes to FTSE100 clients, Slaughters and Linklaters take the top two spots. But Ashurst is giving them a run for their money across the whole stock market. Donna Sawyer reports

  • Why celebrity CFAs in libel cases are a moral issue

    5-Dec-2005

    Rich claimants are being allowed to destroy freedom of speech - for free. Joanne Harris reports

  • Winward Fearon bags Lovells PFI expert

    5-Dec-2005

    Construction and projects boutique Winward Fearon has hired Lovells senior associate Lisa Calderwood as a partner. She is the second major arrival in recent months. In January, energy and projects partner Mark Bartholomew joined from CMS Cameron McKenna. Calderwood has strong healthcare expertise and advised the senior lenders and sponsors on the construction aspects of Doncaster Hospital's PFI and Nuffield ...

  • Women, ethnic minorities and solicitors: the courts need you

    5-Dec-2005

    The judiciary is not renowned for being an exemplary equal opportunities employer and, for this reason, the recent appointment of a teenage "disc jockey of Asian origin" (as the tabloids put it) as the youngest-ever magistrate caught the public imagination.