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National firm Russell Jones & Walker has launched a dedicated Financial Services Authority (FSA) unit in response to increased work resulting from the Financial Services & Market Act (FSMA) and numerous referrals from City firms
The 12-strong unit combines lawyers from the firm's employment, regulatory and litigation departments and offers advice on the new regulatory framework governed by the FSA. Criminal department head Rod Fletcher, who leads the new unit, said: "The full scope of the FSMA is beginning to bite and we're seeing a growing need for integrated advice in the employment, regulatory and criminal fields." Approximately 50 per cent of the unit's work is referred to the team by City law firms. Russell Jones is often brought in on cases where an institution and an individual employee are cooperating in making representations to the FSA or the new Financial Services & Markets Act Tribunal, but need separate representation. Fletcher said: "We're seeing an increasing demand for the expertise we offer, especially from commercial practices. It's already clear that the complexities of the new regulations will raise more potential conflicts for these firms."