pnBlawg

the professional negligence blog

A collaboration between Rebmark Legal Solutions and 1 Chancery Lane

Complaints against lawyers – The Legal Ombudsman Scheme 2013

  The First of April might appear a foolish day to write about the Legal Ombudsman Scheme.  It is not new, but it is steadily gaining in popularity.  Since 2007, the scheme has been administered by the Office for Legal Complaints.  This free scheme is being expanded – up to £50,000 could now be awarded by way of ‘compensation’ – and therefore could... [More]

Engineers liable for market fall

    The claimant company (“JGPL”) in John Grimes Partnership Ltd v Gubbins [2013] EWCA Civ 37 provided consulting engineering services. It was engaged by Mr Gubbins, a farmer and property developer, to design a road and drainage scheme for his residential development and to obtain the necessary statutory approval by March 2007.  JGPL failed to complete its work by t... [More]

Judicial snipe

If you want some entertaining reading for Easter, have a look at the judgment Sir Alan Ward delivered yesterday in Wright v. Michael Wright Supplies Ltd [2013] EWCA Civ. 234.  He bemoans the increase in the number of cases conducted by litigants in person and has a pop at the politicians for withdrawing legal aid from so many.  There is no eventual saving in cost to t... [More]

Claims against solicitors and the “new” CPR 3.9

CPR 3.9 ‘Relief from Sanctions’ is being entirely reformed. From the 1st April 2013, gone will be the checklist which is to be replaced by a much broader discretion as to whether to grant relief, with the judge specifically referred to the need for litigation to be conducted efficiently, at proportionate cost, and with a need to enforce compliance with rules, practice directions and or... [More]

The Supreme Court of Ireland reviews SAAMCo

In the Republic of Ireland this week the Supreme Court is being asked to consider one of the country’s largest lender cases of recent years: KBC Bank Ireland Plc v BCM Hanby Wallace (http://www.courts.ie/__80256F2B00356A6B.nsf/0/01F5B8435ABFB92080257A06003D46C3).   In March 2012 Mr Justice McGovern held that the Defendant firm of solicitors had not merely breached its duty in not ... [More]

Early Applications for Pre-Action Disclosure: Assetco Plc v Grant Thornton UK LLP

At the heart of an application for pre-action disclosure (“PAD”) in a prospective case where there is no issue as to the correct parties being implicated, is a bifurcated test. The first element consists of a jurisdictional test: would the documents sought fall within standard disclosure? The second element consists of a discretional element: is early disclosure desirable, and should d... [More]

Legal Advice Privilege and the professions.

I have a rather boring relationship with my accountant,  I tell him how much money has come in and he tells me how much I have to give to the nice men at the Revenue; not for me the complex off-shore trust or some other interesting tax minimisation vehicle.  As such I’ve never received (or asked for) advice relating to the legality of any particular tax avoidance scheme.  If I... [More]

Testamentary Capacity and Solicitor Negligence

The conclusion of a recent Study undertaken by Robert Hunter, heads of trusts litigation at Herbert Smith and Dr Claire Royston, a consultant psychiatrist and medical director of Four Seasons Health Care, should serve as a stark warning for practitioners in this area. Its conclusion has been that it has found solicitors lacking when making this judgment as to the potential testator’s capacit... [More]

Breach of Trust: AIB Group (UK) plc v Mark Redler & Co

See my earlier post, 13.12.12, on Nationwide v Davisons [2012] EWCA Civ 1626. The Court of Appeal judgment  in AIB Group (UK) Plc v Mark Redler & Co [2013] EWCA Civ 45 was handed down on 8 February 2013. The court has again taken the opportunity to place a brake on breach of trust arguments in professional negligence claims. In AIB v Redler the Court of Appeal grappled with two main iss... [More]

Disclosure under the Professional Negligence Pre-Action Protocol: Webb Resolutions Ltd v Waller Needham & Green [2012]

Non-compliance by claimants with their disclosure obligations under the Professional Negligence Pre-Action Protocol can prove an expensive mistake.  Webb Resolutions Ltd v Waller Needham & Green [2012] EWHC 3529 (Ch) shows why.   The Claimant, a purchaser of mortgage loans from institutional lenders – c.f. the preceding post – wished to sue the Defendant solicitors wh... [More]