Crunch boom

Is English law bank-friendly? Should it be the policy of the English courts to support financial market stability?

With so much financial litigation taking up the time of the courts these are important questions. Three leading litigators give us their views.

Last week more than 100 current and former Barclays employees attempted to persuade a London court that they deserved anonymity in the upcoming Libor dispute, Graisley Properties v Barclays Bank.

Blackstone Chambers’ David Pannick QC appeared for the applicants and Mr Justice Flaux refused them. More than 50 lawyers were in court to hear the case, such are the implications of the dispute.

“If Barclays fails in that case, the prospects for UBS and potentially other investment banks implicated in Libor manipulation would, quite frankly, be grim,” says RPC partner Simon Hart.

Grim for the economy, no doubt, but it would also keep the litigation boom alive.

Elsewhere in litigation:

  • The Law Society and Bar Council face off over barrister contracts.
  • Former 39 Essex Street silk Rohan Perhsad QC, facing trial for tax fraud, says he thought his chambers paid his VAT.
  • Monckton Chambers’ Tim Ward QC, a familiar face on Icelandic television, wins a major dispute for the Icelandic government over its defunct banking liabilities.
  • And, Withers partner Amber Melville-Brown says that using a Royal Charter to implement the recommendations of the Leveson Report is archaic and undemocratic.