Pannone Napier split 'not final'

DISSOLVED multi-party action firm Pannone Napier could reform if a spate of disasters similar to those which plagued the UK during the past decade occur again.

But former Law Society president Rodger Pannone, who formed the joint venture firm in 1986 with fellow personal injury lawyer Michael Napier, says it is more likely that his practice, Pannone & Partners, would put in joint tenders for such work with Napier's Irwin Mitchell.

Pannone says the practice, which was involved in disaster work such as the Marchioness, King's Cross and Lockerbie, was “very unusual” at the time it was set up, and its unique position in the legal market left it well placed to deal with cases.

However, other firms have since acquired experience in multi-party actions, and Pannone says the benefits which came with the establishment of the practice no longer existed.

“Both Michael and I are sad that something which was not only a great success, but which also taught us and others a great deal no longer needs to exist,” says Pannone.

“If you asked me if there is ever a possibility that we will reform then I would say yes. On one level we want to see that those vast world-wide disasters never happen again but, if they do, the means of dealing with them will be reviewed.”

He says there “certainly is a distinct possibility” that the firms would join forces to tender for work.