pnBlawg

the professional negligence blog

A collaboration between Rebmark Legal Solutions and 1 Chancery Lane

Plus ça change? Re-litigating the underlying claim in a solicitors’ negligence case

In a solicitors’ negligence claim based on a previous case which was lost or under-settled it is not unusual to see the complaint that one party is seeking to re-litigate the original claim.  However, the complaint is normally one levelled by the defendant against the claimant.  The correct approach is to assess the “value” of the lost chance of the claim succeeding by ... [More]

Disclosure of insurance cover

A common concern for many claimants and their lawyers in litigation is whether the defendants have effective insurance cover and can thus satisfy any judgment obtained them. When a claimant discovers that he only has a “paper” judgment, he often looks to blame his solicitor. This is what happened in the recent case of Dowling v Bennett Griffin (a firm) [2013] EWHC 1995 (Ch) in which Mr... [More]

Mortgage fraud - section 61 Trustee Act 1925 revisited

  The case of Santander UK Plc v R A Legal Solicitors (a firm) [2013] EWHC 1380 (QB) contains a timely review of “mortgage fraud” cases and of the circumstances in which a solicitor might successfully obtain relief under section 61 Trustee Act 1925 (see further Karen Shuman’s posting “Section 61 Trustee Act 1925 and the Three Wise Men”). The brief facts were as f... [More]

An expert too far .....

The Commercial Court gave short shrift to parties calling insurance experts to opine on meaning of a widely used construction insurance policy. The case of Aspen Insurance UK Limited v Adana Construction Limited [2013] EWHC 1568 (Comm) concerned cross claims for declarations as to whether the claimant insurer was contractually bound to cover the defendant contractor under the terms of a combined... [More]

Limitation Periods and Solicitor Negligence

In the case of Susan Berney v Thomas Saul (T/A Thomas Saul & Co) [2013] EWCA Civ 640, the Court of Appeal has provided further guidance as to the date of the accrual of a cause of action in a solicitor’s negligence case.     Ms Berney (“MB”) instructed Thomas Saul & Co (“TS”) in 1999 to act for her in a personal injury claim following a road traffi... [More]

Quinn, Lemma and now Balva

  1,300 solicitors firms are facing the prospect of having to find alternative insurance following the decision by the Latvian Financial and Capital Markets Commission to withdraw the operating licences for insurer Balva. According the press release on the FCMC's website, Balva must now launch a winding-up process by appointing a liquidator but all its insurance policies are still e... [More]

Jackson: when is a deadline for a court order 'not written in stone'?

The case of Re Atrium Training Services Limited [2013] EWHC 1562 (Ch) is the latest judgment from the High Court which considers the new rules. The judge was faced with an application to extend time to comply with a court order for a massive disclosure exercise. This came against a background of a history of breaches of a timetable set by the court. The judge underlined the strictness of the new r... [More]

Caselaw since 1st April 2013 - leopards and spots?

  The case of Venulum Property Investments Ltd v Space Architecture Limited [2013] EWHC 1242 (TCC) concerned a relief from sanctions application under r. 3.9. The decision was in fact made under the old rules because the application was made prior to 1st April 2013 but the judge (Edwards-Stuart J) took the new regime into account concluding: “In my judgment, when the circumstances are ... [More]

Contractual alteration to limitation periods

Coulson J in the TCC has considered the question of parties’ ability to agree in contractual terms to vary the usual limitation period governing claims either side might make under a construction contract. He noted that this issue had recently been decided by the CA in favour of allowing parties to vary the limitation period to provide certainty in Inframatrix Investments Ltd v Dean Constr... [More]