7 April 2003

The Lawyer

  • 20 jobs to go as Clifford Chance gets tough on headcount

    9-Apr-2003

    Clifford Chance is taking a leaf out of Linklaters’ book by reducing headcount at its London office. It is understood that Clifford Chance has announced a reduction of around 20 associates and support staff in its corporate department while a number of lawyers will be redeployed throughout the firm. ...

  • 3/4 South Square wins insolvency star from US

    7-Apr-2003

    The UK's premier insolvency set 3/4 South Square has signed up one of the best-known insolvency and restructuring lawyers in the US, Ronald DeKoven.

  • 39 Essex Street's head steps down

    7-Apr-2003

    Nigel Pleming QC is stepping down as head of 39 Essex Street Chambers after three years, to be replaced by Richard Davies QC and Richard Wilmot-Smith QC.

  • A&O appoints new head for Amsterdam

    9-Apr-2003

    Allen & Overy has appointed a new managing partner in its Amsterdam office, following the transfer of former managing partner Cees Vellekoop to the the firm’s corporate department in Tokyo. Peter Eijsvoogel took over as Vellekoop’s replacement in Amsterdam at the beginning of April.Vellekoop has been managing partner of the office since its merger with a substantial part of Benelux firm Loeff Claeys Verbeke in 2000. He was also Loeff Claeys’ resident partner ...

  • ABA to propose legal practising restrictions

    7-Apr-2003

    The American Bar Association (ABA) is pushing US state governments to pass laws protecting the position of lawyers to handle legal work in their jurisdictions, forcing competing professions to drop paralegal services.

  • Apology accepted

    7-Apr-2003

    The mediation of the Alder Hey organ scandal could be the template for future settlements, says Ian Cohen

  • Ashursts' German finance head quits

    7-Apr-2003

    Ashurst Morris Crisp has lost its German head of finance Hans Gunther Nordhues, following what the firm's German managing partner Wolf Murkel calls "an amicable settlement".

  • Barings over as film finance onslaught kicks in

    7-Apr-2003

    The Barings High Court litigation has finished after nearly two years, leaving its home in the mammoth Court 80 vacant for the hordes of lawyers about to argue the gigantic Hollywood film finance case.

  • BDW lures team of five from Corrs

    7-Apr-2003

    Australian firm Blake Dawson Waldron (BDW) has poached a team of five property partners from rival firm Corrs Chambers Westgarth.

  • Bird & Bird in Brussels raid for competition push

    10-Apr-2003

    Bird & Bird has raided Stanbrook & Hooper in Brussels, taking a team of three competition lawyers. Partner Wilko van Weert heads the team and will lead Bird & Bird’s competition practice in Brussels.Van Weert has spent three years at the Dutch competition authority and has a number of clients in the life sciences, communications, media and IT sectors.

  • Birmingham Law Society names DLA firm of the year

    7-Apr-2003

    DLA scooped Law Firm of the Year at Birmingham Law Society's second annual awards, which took place on 6 March at the city's International Convention Centre

  • Birmingham rivals join forces

    7-Apr-2003

    Two of Birmingham's oldest firms, Blackhams and Bradley & Cuthbertson, have merged to create Blackhams Cuthbertson. It will have five partners and three associates. Ex-Blackhams partner Paul Smith will be managing partner. The firm is aiming for a fee income of £2m by the end of its first year. First revealed on www.thelawyer.com/lawyernews 2 April 2003

  • Bye bye Buchanans

    7-Apr-2003

    US firms retrench in London as Buchanan Ingersoll loses all its lawyers; Altheimer hit as yet more go

  • Campbell Hooper homes in on Taylor Woodrow solicitor for house building expansion

    10-Apr-2003

    Campbell Hooper has taken on former Taylor Woodrow solicitor Bill Bidder to head the firm’s House Builder Group.Bidder was head of legal at one of the company’s subsidiaries Taywood Homes, as well as being a board member and legal director of Taylor Woodrow Developments.Hooper, who joins the firm on 14 April, takes over from former group head Stephen Siddall, who will become a consultant as of 1 July.However, it is thought unlikely that the firm will receive ...

  • Can private equity hack it against the vulture funds?

    7-Apr-2003

    Dearbail Jordan asks whether private equity houses have got the stomach to risk distressed debt.

  • Charging for barbies

    7-Apr-2003

    Tulkinghorn knows there are a lot of law firms looking to bolster profitability in the current economic downturn. Perhaps they should take some notes from those entrepreneurial types down under on 'creative billing'.Last week the Solicitors Complaints Tribunal in Australia heard a case in which a name partner at Shine Roche McGowan, a firm of Queensland ambulance-chasers, had billed A$300 (£115) an hour for work done by secretaries. The tribunal found that, ...

  • Chubb locks in Camerons' Casement for new general counsel role

    9-Apr-2003

    Chubb Commercial Insurance (CCI), a division of Chubb Insurance Company of Europe, has hired David Casement of CMS Cameron McKenna as its new general counsel.The new role has been established to help CCI conduct business effectively in multiple jurisdictions.Casement has extensive experience in both contentious and non-contentious insurance work, having practised in the London market for six years.

  • Clarification

    7-Apr-2003

    In the 24 March issue of The Lawyer, in the article 'Benji Pell uses Cripps in Express hostilities', it was erroneously stated that Lucy Moorman was a barrister at Brick Court and is acting for the Sunday Express in its defence of a case brought by Pell. Moorman is actually a barrister at Doughty Street Chambers and is acting for Pell, not the Sunday Express, as stated.

  • Cleanliness is next to friendlessness

    7-Apr-2003

    Proof, if proof were needed, that some lawyers are insane. A certain partner who practised at an international office of a top 10 UK law firm with merger ambitions had what can only be described as obsessive compulsive disorder.Apparently, the partner's associates were ordered to completely clear their desks at the end of every working day, which is fine. However, he also insisted that each lawyer must hang their mouse over their monitor in a certain way. He would then ...

  • Clifford Chance slashes newly-qualifieds' pay packets

    7-Apr-2003

    Clifford Chance is set to rock the legal sector by cutting newly-qualifieds' salaries, potentially prompting a wave of UK firms to follow suit.

  • Clifford Chance strengthens Tokyo office

    7-Apr-2003

    Clifford Chance has moved finance partner Peter Kilner to its Tokyo office. Kilner handles acquisition finance, capital markets and structured finance work. He will be joined by senior associate David Poureshagh.

  • Clyde & Co faces £10m pension shortfall

    7-Apr-2003

    Clyde & Co is in crisis meetings with staff over an estimated £10m shortfall in its final salary pension scheme, invested with the collapsed mutual Equitable Life.

  • College of Law to train Land Registry staff

    7-Apr-2003

    The College of Law has won a £1.8m contract to train hundreds of civil servants at the Land Registry over a five-year period. The college has helped to redevelop the Land Registry Qualification, a distance-learning course, which will also be available to outside solicitors and their support staff from September this year. The college's chief executive Professor Nigel Savage said: "We're excited by the prospect of extending the course to conveyancing practitioners."

  • Corporate deals round-up

    7-Apr-2003

    Slaughter and May (Richard Cooper, Tony Beare, Graham White, Eddie Codrington) acted for Deutsche Post AG on the acquisition of the remaining shares of parcels and logistics company Securicor Omega Holdings. The remaining capital was bought from the target’s joint venture company, Securicor Group for E247m (£169.9m). Herbert Smith advised Securicor.

  • Curse of the vampire

    7-Apr-2003

    Dracula Park, intended as a new attraction for Romania, sounds a surefire winner. But as Alex Wade reports, the government is having a hard time finding local lawyers willing to get involved

  • DEAL OF THE WEEK - TERRA FIRMA

    7-Apr-2003

    Slaughters wins Terra Firma public bid deal

  • Domestic firms top the table for leading Dutch companies

    7-Apr-2003

    Greenfield UK firms kept at arm's length in Holland; A&O wins 'local' reputation.

  • Expelled Bangkok head set for feud with Clifford Chance

    7-Apr-2003

    Clifford Chance will shortly be hit with a lawsuit from its former Bangkok head after he was expelled from the partnership.

  • Ex-SRT partners fight £1m claim

    7-Apr-2003

    Four Stephenson Harwood partners are fighting a claim, understood to be for £1m, brought by two partners of their former firm Sinclair Roche & Temperley.

  • Finnish the job

    7-Apr-2003

    One of Tulkinghorn's scribes was interested to read a press release from the Financial Times (no, not DLA or Wragge & Co) the other day. Three law firms, including DLA and Wragges, had finished in the Top 100 Bestest Places To Work In Europe list. The other? Well, Finland's Hannes Snellman, of course.Tulkinghorn hears from his Scando correspondent that Hannes Snellman is indeed ...

  • Freshfields gains antitrust capability in China

    7-Apr-2003

    Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has launched a China-based antitrust practice, headed by partner Thomas Jones. Partners Doug Markel in Beijing and Carl Cheng in Shanghai will work with Jones. The launch coincides with the new basic merger control regime by the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Co-operation.

  • Future perfect

    7-Apr-2003

    Olswang chief exec Jonathan Goldstein thinks looking back is a waste of time and lives for what's around the next corner. Emma Vere-Jones reports

  • Grabiner charges a grand per hour

    7-Apr-2003

    Lord Grabiner QC, the Labour peer advising entrepreneur Philip Green on his bid for Safeway, is now charging £1,000 an hour for his work, The Lawyer can reveal.

  • Healys managing partner faces perjury charge

    7-Apr-2003

    The London managing partner of law firm Healys is due to appear in court accused of perjury while acting on a property matter for client Mohammed Khokher.

  • Herbert Smith handles buyout for lastminute

    7-Apr-2003

    Herbert Smith, with best friends Gleiss Lutz and Stibbe, has further cemented its relationship with lastminute.com, after the company fell out with its previous main corporate adviser Linklaters last year. Last week, Herbert Smith advised on the dotcom's £40m acquisition of Holidays Autos, the world's largest leisure car rental broker.

  • ICSID landmark ruling

    7-Apr-2003

    An ICSID tribunal recently defined that constitutes an 'investment'. Juliet Blanch investigates the far-reaching ramifications for potential investors and governments

  • International firms alert staff to dangers of Asian killer flu

    7-Apr-2003

    Asian offices of international firms have been on full alert this week to ensure none of their staff are suffering from the deadly virus which has taken the region by storm.

  • Jones Day Gouldens lures SJ Berwin's Plainer for restructuring top spot

    10-Apr-2003

    Jones Day Gouldens has taken on SJ Berwin insolvency partner Adam Plainer as UK head of restructuring in its second City lateral since the merger . Plainer, who was in talks to join the London office of Gouldens when the merger discussions with Jones Day were going on, brings with him a strong relationship ...

  • Killing the beans

    7-Apr-2003

    Which magic circle partner turned nasty after being rebuffed by a journalist?Tulkinghorn's mother always used to say: "Look after the pennies and the pounds take care of themselves." Law firms, however, seem to be taking this to bizarre extremes.It has been well documented that larger practices have been cutting back on partner shindigs, including Clifford Chance and, ...

  • Lawyers label NHS IT tender a 'shambles'

    7-Apr-2003

    The tender process that resulted in the appointment of 'best friends' DLA and Allen & Overy (A&O) for the £2.3bn National Programme for IT in the NHS has been dubbed a "shambles" by lawyers involved in the process.

  • Linklaters head of IP in shock defection to Bar

    7-Apr-2003

    Linklaters' London head of intellectual property (IP) Anna Carboni is set to leave the firm to join Wilberforce Chambers.

  • Linklaters slows down on making up partners

    7-Apr-2003

    Linklaters has elected just 19 new partners globally, compared with 29 last year. The same percentage of partners (32 per cent) will be made up from the firm's London base as in 2002. However, unlike last year, the firm is not making up any partners in intellectual property or real estate, where it has recently cut or de-equitised partners. From 1 May, it will have 500 partners.

  • Lloyd & Co sued for £2m over shipping advice to convicted killer

    8-Apr-2003

    A Sicilian businessman is suing shipping firm Lloyd & Co for £2m over its conduct of litigation on his behalf while he was imprisoned for the murder of his wife.Giuseppe Di Blasi, who has given evidence by videolink from Italy, where he is under house arrest during the ongoing High Court trial, originally instructed Lloyd & Co in his action against Italian shipowner and salvor Battista Murri. At the time he was imprisoned in South Africa for fatally gunning ...

  • Macchi partner breaks away to launch boutique

    7-Apr-2003

    Macchi di Cellere e Gangemi partner Marco Padovan has quit to launch his own boutique, Studio Legale Padovan, specialising in banking, project finance, corporate and litigation. Formerly chief counsel at the European Investment Bank, Padovan joined Baker & McKenzie to head its project finance practice in 2000 and joined Macchi in late 2002. He has hired 10 fee-earners, some from Macchi, and a senior ...

  • Maclays in Aberdeen launch

    10-Apr-2003

    Scots giant Maclay Murrray & Spens is set to launch an office in Aberdeen to target oil and gas sector clients.The firm is relocating corporate partner Alastair Wyper to Aberdeen to head up the new office, which is due to open on Monday (14 April). Wyper will be joined by senior corporate lawyers Neil Burgess and Shauna Powell.Maclay’s chief executive Magnus Swanson said: "This move is a positive response to client needs in the north-east and changes ...

  • Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw storms the M&A rankings

    7-Apr-2003

    Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw has leapt an astonishing 32 places in Thomson Financial's rankings for US announced M&A deals for the first quarter of 2003.

  • Mills & Reeve has big plans for Birmingham as turnover soars

    7-Apr-2003

    Mills & Reeve's 10-partner Birmingham practice is on course for a record year. Turnover is up 65 per cent at the end of February, the three-quarter mark of the 63-partner firm's financial year

  • MoFo opens third China base in Shanghai

    7-Apr-2003

    San Francisco firm Morrison & Foerster (MoFo) is spreading its reach across the Chinese market by opening in Shanghai.

  • Nabarros becomes a 100-partner law firm

    7-Apr-2003

    Nabarro Nathanson has hit the 100 partner mark after promoting five lawyers to its partnership. James Trundle in property, Justin Cornelius in corporate, Susan Gordon in employment and Ian Lowe in intellectual property have all been made up in London, while in Sheffield personal injury lawyer Nicola Loadsman has been promoted.

  • Opinion

    7-Apr-2003

    Six years ago, after seven years in the forces, I left the RAF to train as a lawyer. Like many others, I'm still on the National Reserve List and have informed my firm that I could face recall. However, many people in a similar position may not have told their employers, nor realise their need to do so.There are currently 46,000 volunteer reserves, territorials and ex-service personnel on the Ministry of Defence call-out list. More than half of those on the list are ...

  • Orchard cultivates corporate recovery with Eversheds hire

    7-Apr-2003

    City firm Orchard has taken on Eversheds insolvency partner Brenda Harris to head the firm's corporate recovery team.

  • Orrick's Italian launch kicks off with major E&Y corporate raid

    7-Apr-2003

    Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe has raided Ernst & Young's (E&Y) Italian legal arm for the first stage of its Italian launch.

  • Paul Giles wins race to become Norton Rose chairman

    9-Apr-2003

    Norton Rose Asian managing partner Paul Giles has won the coveted role of chairman, following a three week, secret ballot election process.Giles, who will relocate from Singapore to take up his new role on 1 May, replaces current chairman David Lewis, who has come to the end of his second three-year term.The appointment was announced last night at a partnership meeting, following the three ...

  • Pearl's wisdom

    7-Apr-2003

    Jonathan Pearl, chief counsel for Sony Business Europe, only instructs on the basis of experience. But as Husnara Begum reports, he's already got quite a lot of that in-house

  • Pillsbury furthers Silicon Valley expansion with Cooley Godward lateral

    9-Apr-2003

    Pillsbury Winthrop is continuing to swell its Silicon Valley office after making its eighth lateral hire this year.The firm has recruited partner Deborah Ludewig from Cooley Godward, who specialises in corporate, securities and intellectual property (IP) with experience in emerging public and private companies and venture capital investors. In recent months the firm has bolstered the Silicon Valley branch by taking on litigation partners Reginald Steer and Vernon Granneman, ...

  • Pillsbury settles $45m lawsuit with ex-partner

    7-Apr-2003

    Pillsbury Winthrop has closed the chapter on its acrimonious split with a former partner after agreeing to settle a $45m (£28.7m) lawsuit.

  • Pitmans grows property and private client groups

    8-Apr-2003

    Pitmans has made two senior appointments to boost itscommercial property and private client departments.Bill Howard has left Wilson Howard to join Pitmans’ commercial property department as a partner. Howard’s experience includes setting up land acquisition partnerships and working for a variety of companies, financial institutions and developers. David Ainslie has joined Pitmans as a director, heading the firm’s private client department. Ainslie joined ...

  • Premier League chooses ITV lawyer for legal head

    7-Apr-2003

    The FA Premier League has appointed Simon Johnson, the director of rights and business affairs at the ITV Network, as its first director of legal and business affairs.

  • Rosalind Wright unveiled as new Fraud Advisory Panel chairman

    8-Apr-2003

    Rosalind Wright is to replace George Staple QC as the chairman of the Fraud Advisory Panel. The panel’s main role is to publicise the damage caused to the economy by fraud.Wright is currently the director of the Serious Fraud Office, and will replace Staple when he steps down in May. Wright said: "The panel still has a substantial job to do in terms of alerting the public and business to the dangers of fraud and persuading the Government to make it a higher ...

  • Should the split capital trust debacle be a class action?

    7-Apr-2003

    Brendan Malkin reports on Class Law's change of heart over this massive litigation.

  • Telecoms work sparks deals hike

    7-Apr-2003

    Announced European deals up 54 per cent; completed deals down 20 per cent; magic circle fall behind in the rankings

  • The Leader Column

    7-Apr-2003

    Ah, those poor, poor magic circle partners. The possibility of their average profits falling be-low £700,000, all those conflicts being scrutinised and - oh, horror! - the prospect of being appraised by assistants.

  • The middle man

    7-Apr-2003

    Mediator-arbitrators are popular in other parts of the world. So why aren't they used in the UK? Carol Mulcahy reveals why

  • The story so far

    7-Apr-2003

    Last week The Lawyer reported that Denton Wilde Sapte was to abandon its Denton International (DI) network following frustrated attempts to merge with the jewel in the DI crown, German firm Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek. DI is a more or less exclusive European referral network, comprising firms in Austria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Spain, Sweden and the UK. Heuking wanted to keep DI going as an exclusive referral club, while it is understood that Dentons wanted ...

  • Theodores, Addleshaws delay merger vote

    7-Apr-2003

    Theodore Goddard and Addleshaw Booth & Co have pushed the date on which partners will vote on their proposed merger back to 16 April. The vote is understood to be a dead cert, since the firms announced publicly that they had entered exclusive talks on Valentine's Day. However, the original plan to vote on 31 March was scrapped, partly because they wished to avoid announcing the result on April Fools' Day. First revealed on www.thelawyer.com/lawyernews 2 April 2003

  • UN creates watchdog to police environment regulations

    7-Apr-2003

    A groundbreaking legal watchdog has been created, charged with ensuring governments abide by a new international convention on environmental decision-making and information dissemination.

  • Uncategorical Oracle

    7-Apr-2003

    Legal developments come thick and fast and it is as much as can be expected of any lawyer to keep on top of changes in their own particular field. You can all imagine, then, the sheer magnitude of the task facing our revered Lord Chancellor, Lord Irvine, who has to keep abreast of every single new law. The mere thought of it is almost too much too bear.So you will surely all be sympathetic if our great Lord Chancellor suffers the occasional slip. Take last week: while giving ...

  • USAID keeps Iraq contracts in-house

    7-Apr-2003

    The US Agency for International Development (USAID), which looks likely to run the reconstruction of Iraq, is relying exclusively on an in-house team of around 40 lawyers as it negotiates the lucrative contracts to rebuild the country.

  • WALLACE & PARTNERS

    7-Apr-2003

    Wallace & Partners is getting used to sitting opposite the big boys

  • WestLB instruction catapults Travers into top quarter of international firms

    7-Apr-2003

    Travers Smith Braithwaite has been thrust into the top quarter of the worldwide legal rankings on the back of its role on WestLB's potential takeover of water utility AWG.

  • Winnie the Pooh sparks rubbish war

    7-Apr-2003

    In a bizarre twist that would make Winnie the Pooh hide in his honey pot, an LA law firm suing the Walt Disney Co over claims of unpaid royalties has owned up to routing through the media giant's rubbish.

  • Wragges' property ambition

    7-Apr-2003

    It's a case of mixed messages at Wragge & Co over its recent statement that it aims to be the number one full service law firm to the UK's real estate industry by 2006