National firm McGrigors is being sued for negligence by former client the Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society (ALCS).

In a High Court claim the ALCS, which collects royalties for authors, said the firm failed to exercise a break clause on the lease of its London offices.

According to the claim, which was issued by the society’s solicitor, Hart Brown managing partner Bettina Brueggemann, McGrigors partner Suzanne Gill was instructed to exercise the break clause in January 2006. However, the break notice was served on the wrong person, resulting in the ALCS being tied into its lease from June 2007 to June 2012.

The ALCS is accusing McGrigors of negligence and breach of contract, claiming the firm failed to take steps to identify who the notice should have been served on.

The ALCS is claiming for the costs it has incurred as a result of being tied into its lease and relevant interest. However, as the job of quantifying the loss is complex, it will wait until liability has been determined before calculating the sum.

McGrigors, which is contesting liability, declined to comment.