News in brief

A round up of stories from the UK and around the world

Mishcon de Reya has seen its profits per partner fall for the second year running, down to an average of £190,000 from last year's £235,000 and the previous year's £275,000. The fall is despite an increase in turnover to £17.34m from £15.8m in 1999/2000. In October, the firm completed a merger with music and entertainment law firm Eatons.
Taylor Joynson Garrett has app-ointed a new managing partner. Intellectual property partner Gary Moss (right) will take over from Declan Tarpey on 1 October. Tarpey has completed a three-year term and will return to the finance and projects group to concentrate on projects and structured finance transactions. Moss has been a member of the executive board for nearly three years.
The British-Spanish Law Association is being launched by the Law Society to foster links between British and Spanish lawyers. The association will provide a forum for the exchange of ideas, will organise conferences and events, and will promote knowledge of both countries' laws and legal jurisdictions.
Public Guardianship Office (PGO), an executive agency of the Lord Chancellor's Department, has appointed David Lye as chief executive following an open competition. The PGO works in partnership with receivers, the not-for-profit sector, the legal profession and others to protect and manage the financial affairs of people with limited mental capacity. Lye is currently project director for the new Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service.
Norton Rose has hired head of the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission's corporate finance division David Stannard to head a new local office. Stannard, one of the five executive directors at the commission, was the managing partner of Norton Rose in Hong Kong from 1995 to 1998, before the 22-year alliance with local firm Johnson Stokes & Master collapsed. Norton Rose had agreed not to practise in Hong Kong for three years if the deal dissolved.
Whitbread is cutting its panel following the sale of its traditional pubs and bars businesses. The group is aiming to cut costs and will pick a new panel based on rates, speed of response and quality of service. The 12 firms currently handling the work include Field Fisher Waterhouse, Theodore Goddard and Berwin Leighton Paisner.
Forsters has hired senior corporate and insolvency lawyer Jeremy Whiteson (left) from Rooks Rider, where he was a partner. He has broad experience in company acquisitions, sales and flotations, as well as insolvency and corporate rescue.
Dorsey & Whitney intellectual property (IP) partner Ian Craig has been appointed chair of the International Visual Communications Association (IVCA) Board, with immediate effect. Craig, who leads the London office's IP practice, has been involved with IVCA and its members for 15 years.
Blackstone Chambers barrister Ian Brownlie QC has been appointed judge ad hoc to the International Court of Justice in the Hague. The case, Liechtenstein Germany, concerns the legality of title to land and property ceased after World War II. The distinction of appointment as ad hoc judge is only the second one involving UK international lawyers. Sir Elihu Lauterpacht QC is ad hoc judge for Bosnia in the case Bosnia Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
Moore & Blatch Solicitors has launched an all-inclusive human resources consultancy service to offer advice on employment policies and procedures, as well as legal advice. The service targets small and medium-sized enterprises.