24 August 1998

Blake Lapthorn in £1m IT overhaul

HAMPSHIRE firm Blake Lapthorn has invested £1m in a front and back office overhaul of its IT systems which is to be implemented over a 10-week period. The 43-partner Fareham-based firm, which also has offices in London, Southampton and Portsmouth, signed a contract with IT suppliers Videss in July and aims to implement its case […]

An annus mirabilis

Champagne corks are popping for those firms posting record profits, but Philip Hoult and Robert Lindsay wonder whether a hangover is in the offing. Law firms will look back on the 1997/1998 financial year as a halcyon period. Amazingly, nearly every firm in The Lawyer Top 50 broke its record for both turnover and profitability. […]

Leaving behind Big Ben for a career in the City

As lawyers from the private sector take key posts in the Blair Government, David McCahon relates his experience of moving out of Westminster and into the City. David McCahon is a barrister in the consumer and retail finance group at Cameron McKenna. It is a short walk between Westminster and the City, but the two […]

International court intervenes in UN rapporteur's libel battle

A battle to protect the immunity of the UN’s Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers from prosecution has reached the International Court of Justice (ICJ). Param Cumaraswamy is being sued for allegedly libelling Malaysian businessmen whom he accused of manipulating the Malaysian judicial system in a London-based trade paper. In February, the […]

Better the devil you know

If insurance companies are happy to offer extended coverage, why not for the first £1m in coverage currently offered by SIF? A left-wing wit once observed that the reason Margaret Thatcher won so many elections was because “at least you always knew where you were with her”. The Solicitors Indemnity Fund’s (SIF) survival beyond the […]

Lord Irvine pleges action on county court security

THE LORD Chancellor, Lord Irvine has promised to act on calls by The Lawyer for county court summonses to be made freely available to the public. The move follows a successful bid by four barristers – Paul Ozin, Garrett Byrne, Brendan Finucane and Nicola Langridge – to block an application by The Lawyer for access […]

Environmental law needs clean-up

Vincent Sen says the property industry must take action to counter the legal fudge surrounding contaminated land. Vincent Sen is managing director of ICC Site Search. Since July 1995, when the Environment Act received royal assent, the property industry has been pushing for legislative clarification of contaminated land liability. The Government’s recent proposal to reduce […]

In brief: Sundin lands property shop management role

Alistair Sundin (right) has been appointed regional manager for the North East Solicitors Property Shop (SPS). The property centre, which is being set up by the Edinburgh Solicitors Property Centre (ESPC), is due to begin trading later this year.

Andersens calls back Hong Kong head and tightens grip on Garretts

Justin Ede, the managing partner of Arthur Andersen’s affiliated Hong Kong law firm Ede Charlton & Co, has been recalled to London. It has also emerged that property specialist Nigel Bacon, who was recruited from the Hong Kong office of Herbert Smith in April last year, has already left to take up a non-legal role […]

Russell Jones moves into Wales as next step in national expansion plan

FAST-EXPANDING Russell Jones & Walker has opened a new office in Cardiff – the firm’s third new office in the last 18 months. The Cardiff office will be staffed by five solicitors, all specialising in either medical negligence, personal injury or criminal cases. Michael Imperato, a senior assistant previously based at the firm’s Bristol office, […]

US firm poaches Dibbs IT star

HIGH-flying Dibb Lupton Alsop IT partner Alistair Maughan is to leave to help US firm Shaw Pittman Plotts & Trowbridge set up a London office. Maughan has been charged with establishing the niche IT practice along with two other UK lawyers. Margaret Harvey, global legal head at Price Waterhouse before its merger with Coopers & […]

Derry seeks the common touch

Lord Irvine Leaving the trimmings aside, Veronica Cowan gets to the heart of what really drives the incumbent Lord Chancellor. Veronica Cowan is a freelance journalist. Charles Dickens’ Lord High Chancellor in Bleak House presided over the very things our present Lord Chancellor, Lord Irvine wants to eradicate from the civil justice system: cost, delay […]

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