LSLA

London Solicitors Litigation Association

December 2010

London Solicitors Litigation Association

Happy New Year to all our readers.

This month’s edition of our newsletter contains details of some of our most recent activities and those we have planned for the future together with some legal issues which might affect you.

LSLA News

Committee Vacancies
 
We currently have two vacancies on our committee due to retirement. If you are interested in joining the committee, please send your CV to our secretary Gavin Foggo at
gfoggo@foxwilliams.com.
 
AGM and Dinner - 15 March 2011
 
A date has now been set for our AGM and dinner. Lord Falconer shall be our speaker this year. Lord Falconer was Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Constitutional Affairs
between 2003 and 2007 and Solicitor General between 1997 and 1998. Chatham House rules apply to the evening so we look forward to hearing him speak.

The AGM and dinner will take place at Hogan Lovells. Application forms for tickets will be circulated within the near future.

Lectures

Our Autumn lecture series concluded in December and proved very popular. All the lectures were sold out.

Lord Lester of Herne Hill QC spoke on the “The Defamation Bill” on 8 November 2010. In an informative talk he explained the principles underlying his Defamation Reform Bill 2010 and what he saw to the future of defamation actions with the aim of reforming libel laws to provide a "fair balance" between freedom of expression and protection of reputation.

On Thursday 25 November 2010 Ali Malek reported on “Recent Developments in the doctrine of forum non conveniens”.

Due to popular demand we had to arrange for a larger venue for the lecture given on Monday 29 November 2010 by Charles Hollander QC concerning “Recent Developments in Disclosure and Privilege”. Mr Hollander examined a number of recent development in disclosure and privilege, including disclosure in the Facebook age; e-disclosure and its shortcomings; disclosure from groups of companies; without prejudice - Oceanbulk Shipping v TMT Asia; the case for a special privilege for mediation; and privilege in the context of in-house lawyers- Akzo Nobel.

The final lecture in the series took place on Tuesday 7 December 2010 and was presented by Richard Lissack QC on “A New Approach to Financial Regulation: Judgment, Focus and Stability”.

Details of the Spring Lectures will be made available shortly.

Second Visit to the Supreme Court
 
On 6 October 2010 members of the LSLA visited the Supreme Court for a tour of the Court and an informative talk by Louise Di Mambro (Registrar of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom and Acting Registrar of the Privy Council) about the role of The Supreme Court of the United Kingdom and the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council.

The event was so well received that we decided to repeat it sometime this year. We shall let you know when we have a date.

 
Legal News
 
Court Closures

You will remember that earlier this year the Ministry of Justice published a consultation paper into proposed Court closures, including the Mayor’s & City of London County Court. The LSLA responded by objecting to the closure of this Court.
On 14 December 2010, the Ministry of Justice announced that the Court would be retained.
A copy of the Ministry of Justice’s press release identifying the Courts which are to be closed and those which were on the original list of proposed closures but are now to be retained can be seen at http://www.justice.gov.uk/news/newsrelease141210a.htm
 
Consultation Papers
 
Jackson Report
On 15 November the Ministry of Justice published its consultation entitled “Proposals for Reform of Civil Litigation Funding and Costs in England and Wales – Implementation of Lord
Justice Jackson’s Recommendations”.

The aim of the recommendations was to reduce costs whilst still enabling access to justice to those who need it. Notable amongst the recommendations are that CFA success fees and after the event insurance should cease to be recoverable from the opposing party in litigation and contingency fees should be permitted for Court litigation.

A copy of the consultation can be found at http://www.justice.gov.uk/consultations/docs/jackson-consultation-paper.pdf. The LSLA shall be preparing a response in time for the deadline of 14 February 2011.
 
Legal Aid Reform
Also on on 15 November the Ministry of Justice announced its consultation into “Proposals for the Reform of Legal Aid in England and Wales”, which seeks views on the wide ranging
programme of reforms proposed. The proposals aim is to target legal aid to those who most need it and include the options to no longer cover (amongst other claims) clinical negligence,
consumer and general contract, employment, housing and immigration.
 
A copy of the consultation can be found at http://www.justice.gov.uk/consultations/docs/legal-aid-reform-consultation.pdf. The LSLA is preparing a response for the deadline of 14 February 2011. If you would like to contribute please contact Graham Huntley at
grahamhuntley@hoganslovells.com.
 

Recent Press

Committee members of the LSLA have had several press articles published over the past month including:

14 December 2010, Solicitors Journal, "Up for Interpretation" commenting on the decision in Oceanbulk by Graham Huntley and Richard Viegas.