An interesting story in the Lawyer about Peter Smith J criticising SNR Denton for their handling of witnesses and witness statements. I was reminded immediately of Gloster J's comments in the Abramovich-Berenovsky case about the polishing of evidence. The tension between lawyers duty to the client and their duty uphold the rule of law and the proper administration of … Continue reading Curb your enthusiasm: time to act on finessing witness statements?
The late lamented Bobby Robson once said of Craig Bellamy, he could start an argument in an empty room with himself that lad. And I am left with that same feeling myself on reading the recent newsletter from Chair of the Criminal Bar Association on an LSB commissioned report on the rationale behind the Cab … Continue reading Cab Rank Rules or Bar Room Brawls?
An old OFT report was one of the precursors to the Legal Services Act. It has just published a report on legal services regulation taking stock, post implementation. Some of the interesting points are: Out of an estimated 3 million annual users of legal services, 460,000 were likely to be dissatisfied. They suggest low levels then … Continue reading Don’t complain: OFT come back for a look at legal services
The Legal Services Board have published an interesting summary of research on the legal services market which is well worth a read. Especially if you a member of the legal profession, aren't really up for the vigorous competition coming your way and like getting depressed about the future. There is, though, one possible good news … Continue reading What’s the story with solicitors’ complaints and LeO?
The SRA have produced a very thoughtful paper on the LSB's approach to regulation. It advocates a halt to the proliferation of overlapping responsibilities of regulators and the reservation of all legal services, rather than the patchwork of reserved activities that currently exists. Points about complexity from the public's perspective, regulatory arbitrage (the risk that … Continue reading Competition vs Regulation
An interesting report on Regulating Occupations from UKCES has just been published. It surveys a vast field looking at licensing, voluntary accreditation and other approaches to regulating the professions and a vast range of more mundane occupations across Europe and North America. The conclusions are along these lines: “The overall conclusions from the US studies … Continue reading Regulating Occupations: what we know, what we don’t know
Alan Paterson’s Hamlyn Lectures, Lawyers and the Public Good raise a number of very interesting questions about the future of professionalism post-Legal Services Act. Alan is a passionate advocate of the importance of professionalism whom I have had the privilege of working with over very many years. His brand of professionalism recognises the need to … Continue reading Paterson, Hamlyn and the Separation of Regulation and Representation
One of the interesting subplots of the referral fee ban is the professional politics of it. The position of the Law Society is particularly interesting. They are vigorously supporting a ban but I doubt whether they are really speaking for the profession as a whole. One of the things that strikes me most forcefully about … Continue reading Referral Fees: A Short Note on the Politics of Professionalism
Stephen Mayson has written an excellent post on legal services reform tackling the deregulation myth. As he correctly points out, deregulation is not what the Legal Services Act is about. It encourages more competition and it is leading to the liberalisation of ownership and business structures but the same services that were regulated before the … Continue reading The Deregulation Debate: My Twopennyworth