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Ince & Co and Weil Gotshal & Manges could end up suing each other as a result of a complex film finance litigation suit.
The actions will take place following claims due to be brought against the two firms by offshore arms of Hollywood companies Law Debenture Trust and Hollywood Realisations Trust.
Weil Gotshal was brought in as a defendant, along with broker Jardine Lloyd Thompson Risk Solutions in early 2001, but the claim by the two trusts against Ince & Co was launched only recently. Allegations against Ince & Co relate to transactional opinions on the validity and enforceability of the contracts drawn up by the Hollywood companies' insurer Lexington. Lawyers say that Weil Gotshal is thought to be facing similar claims.
One lawyer close to the case explains: "Ince are saying that if I, as a firm, am found liable and I did something wrong, then Weil Gotshal did something wrong also, so we must both be liable. Weil Gotshal is arguing: 'If I'm liable then Ince should be liable, so you must pay your share of the contribution.'"
Law Debenture's and Hollywood Realisations' case against Lexington is set down for 20 weeks starting at the end of April. Lexington is accused of refusing to pay the claimants money it owed, and also of non-disclosure and breach of warranty.
Anthony Boswood QC and Philip Brook-Smith QC of Fountain Court, instructed by Lovells, are acting for Weil Gotshal. Reynolds Porter Chamberlain is instructing Adam Fenton and Gavin Geary of 7 King's Bench Walk for Ince & Co.