Harbottles man sued over £1m overdraft

C Hoare & Co, one of the City’s oldest private banks, is pursuing Harbottle & Lewis head of broadcasting Medwyn Jones for £2.1m to pay off an overdraft taken out by Walker Martineau, the firm he left in 1992.
Jones was one of 19 partners at Walker Martineau, which merged with Pennin-gtons in 2000, who underwrote a £1m overdraft facility taken out a month before he resigned in April 1992.
Many of the ex-partners have settled up with C Hoare & Co, but Jones has refused, prompting the bank to sue him for the entire original overdraft plus interest of £298 a day. Under the rules of partners’ joint and several liability, the bank can sue him for the entire overdraft, which is why it has chosen to do so.
If Jones had settled he would have paid the bank around £55,000, but he has not done so because he claims the other partners agreed to take his name off the account when he resigned.
“This is probably the worst thing that could happen to any partner who’s left a law firm,” said one solicitor close to the case.
Jones, who is being represented by partner David Grant of Halliwell Landau, said he is serving his defence to the claim today (7 July).