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Professional – update

 A reminder that internal e-mails can result in SRA action; for a case involving sexist, racist and homophobic e-mails sent to a work colleague see [2018] LSG 12 February 2.

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Clients – advice warning?

To what extent should you warn a client that your advice may be wrong? The answer is that a warning should be given when there is a ‘significant risk’ about the construction or interpretation of the law.

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Professional – update

Allegations of sexual harassment made against solicitors and those working in legal practice must be reported to the SRA. Harassment includes ‘patronising’ sexism, taunting or predatory behaviour. A solicitor who ‘engages in sexual harassment’ is likely to have breached SRA principles and the Code of Conduct (including a failure to uphold the law or to act with integrity). This guidance comes from the Law Society and is far more unequivocal than previous statements. See [2017] LSG 27 November 1.

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Professional – update

There was much publicity about the Supreme Court decision involving the professional gambler who successfully ran a ‘sting’ against Crockfords. In essence, the court decided that the issue of whether conduct is honest or dishonest is applied using an objective standard; there is no longer a requirement that the defendant must appreciate that what they have done is ‘dishonest’.

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Team moves – covenants?

To what extent can a firm protect itself against a ‘team departure’?

There will undoubtedly be duties owed to the departing partners that are set out in the partnership (or LLP) agreement. In addition there may well be fiduciary duties of good faith and fidelity implied by law. But, it is the restrictive covenants that are likely to be the main focus of attention.

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Law firm – closure

The options for a solicitor wanting to retire (or simply to give up legal practice) are: closure; sale of all or parts to another firm; internal acquisition by a solicitor; creating an ABS to enable a non-lawyer to own the business; or external parties agreeing to buy and operate the firm under its current name.

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Solicitors Journal – demise

The oldest legal journal is (or was) the Solicitors Journal.

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Professional – update

The economy may have stood still in recent years, but that has not stopped the solicitor profession growing in size: there are now 140,000 (an increase of 15,000 in the last five years!). It does seem an unsupportable growth rate [2017] LSG 23 October 1.

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SRA – principles, not rules

The SRA has a new focus on ‘principles’ and ‘professional judgement’, as opposed to ‘rules’.   

Inevitably, a principles-based approach is more uncertain than a rules-based approach, and it is therefore more important for firms to have a recorded set of strong systems and controls which are implemented consistently across the firm.  

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Professional – update

Spare a thought for the hapless staff of the UK arm of Slater and Gordon, which has been spun off and is now wholly owned by international hedge funds (although it will continue to trade as Slater and Gordon). Certainly, it is a sad end to a saga that started with the takeover of Russell Jones & Walker in 2012. [2017] LSG 4 September 3.  

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Page 4 of 34

Most-read articles

Probate fees – increase
Tuesday, 09 April 2019
The much-criticised increase in probate fees comes into effect in April 2019 and apply whether or not a solicitor is involved.  Read more...
SRA – Standards and Regulations introduced November 2019
Tuesday, 09 April 2019
We reported in our February 2019 edition (p32) and March 2019 edition (p33) that the SRA is phasing in its introduction of the new ’Standards and Regulations’ which will replace the 2011... Read more...
LiP – keep informed?
Tuesday, 09 April 2019
We do not usually report on changes which are not yet in force. However, litigators have been warned to expect changes to the processes relating to litigants in person which might come into effect on... Read more...
Interim costs order – when to exercise
Tuesday, 09 April 2019
The Gazette reports on an interesting County Court case where an interim costs order has been granted to solicitors where the full value of the claim will not be quantified until 2022. Read more...
Defective Premises Act – L liable
Tuesday, 09 April 2019
The CA has held that a social L was liable to a T for injury caused due to a faulty drain cover. Read more...
Service charges – recovery of more than 100%?
Tuesday, 09 April 2019
We reported in our February 2019 edition (p24) that the RICS Code of Practice Service Charges in Commercial Property (1st edition) comes into force on 1 April 2019. Read more...
Allotments – protection
Tuesday, 09 April 2019
With the increasing pressure to build new homes, there is a possibility that areas designated for allotments might be under threat of development. Read more...
Children – standard of proof
Tuesday, 09 April 2019
The Court of Appeal refused F’s appeal against the judge’s findings in care proceedings under Part IV CA 1989 that he had sexually abused his daughter (Y). Read more...
NDA – ignoring!
Tuesday, 09 April 2019
Recently, some employees have spoken publicly about sexual harassment in breach of NDA confidentiality obligations.  Read more...
Offences – assault; emergency workers
Tuesday, 09 April 2019
The Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act 2018 follows the increasing number of assaults on emergency workers in the UK.  Read more...

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