LSLA

London Solicitors Litigation Association

February 2013

Welcome to this month’s newsletter which contains details of the forthcoming Jackson reforms, some of our more recent events and other events to look forward to in 2013.  We also have information about the new standard Bar Contract which was effective from 31 January 2013 and might affect the terms upon which you instruct Counsel in future.

LSLA NEWS

Recent Events

Discussion on the implementation of the Jackson Reforms - 22 January 2013

The proposed changes under LASPO will be introduced on 1 April 2013.  On the day that details of the initial changes were announced, we held a panel discussion featuring Mr Justice Ramsey. 

The discussion covered the latest information and views on the scope, timing and practicalities of the changes about to come in to effect including those relating to Conditional Fee Agreements and the recoverability of the success fee and ATE premiums and the introduction of Damages-Based Agreements (see the Damages-Based Agreements (DBA) Regulations 2013) and costs budgeting and management by the Court.

We are all aware of the importance of the changes in legislation and Court procedure and the event provided a helpful introduction to the topics.  

Since the event the Civil Procedure (Amendment) Rules 2013 have been published which explain how the changes shall be put into practical effect by the Court.  During the panel discussion, Mr Justice Ramsey explained the training and emphasis which will be put on costs management by the judiciary, which represents a fundamental change to current practice.

The event was featured in the press, including in the Law Society Gazette on 23 January 2013 (see http://www.lawgazette.co.uk/news/reform-chief-predicts-039sweaty-palms03...)

As the reforms take effect, we are planning on holding further events to discuss their implementation.  Information about some of these events is set out below.

JLSLA and Junior LCLCBA Drinks – 31 January 2013

The drinks reception held by the Junior LCLCBA to which members of the JLSLA were invited was a great success.  The JLSLA is arranging further social events and we shall let you know details as soon as they are available.

Future Events

JLSLA Spring Seminar – “Disclosure and Privilege – Horror Stories and How to Avoid Them” - 26 February 2013 - SOLD OUT

The seminar has proved very popular and tickets have sold out.  The seminar is an informal and practical guide to a multitude of issues which might arise on disclosure (including those encountered when dealing with questions of privilege) and common pitfalls to avoid.

AGM and Dinner – 19 March 2013

Our AGM and dinner will be held on 19 March 2013.  This year our speaker will be Senior Costs Judge Hurst.  With the Jackson Reforms due just six weeks later we hope he will provide an informative talk on how they will be applied by Cost Judges.

A copy of the Notice of the AGM and an application for tickets is attached.  We have held the ticket price to £50 per ticket from last year.

Costs Budgeting Event – 15 May 2013

The introduction of Court approved costs budgeting is a major change to be made within the Jackson Reforms.  We are planning an event dealing with this topic in May for members and non-members of the LSLA as well as bar groups.  Full details are yet to be finalized.  In the meantime, please make a note of the date in your diaries.

Solicitors Journal Conference with speakers from the LSLA – 22 May 2013

Committee members of the LSLA will be speaking at the Litigation Section of the Solicitors Journal conference. Again please make a note in your diary of the date and we shall circulate details when they are available.

Law Society Event with the LSLA - 20 June 2013

Another date for your diaries is 20 June 2013 when we propose to hold an event to consider the impact of the Jackson Reforms once we have experience of how these are being put into practice.  We shall let you know details in due course.

Spring Lecture Series

The Spring Lecture Series is now being put together.  We shall circulate details as soon as these are available.

LSLA Membership

Application forms to renew membership or for new members should have already been sent to you.  In case you have not received yours a further copy is attached. If you are 8 years PQE or less you will automatically become a member of the JLSLA if you complete the section of the application form identifying your year of admission.

The LSLA is now offering corporate membership to firms.  Your firm can register an unlimited number of its solicitors working for it during the year for £500 pa.  A new application form for membership will be circulated shortly.  In the meantime, please contact Julian Copeman on julian.copeman@herbertsmith.com if you would like to take out corporate membership.

Volunteers wanted to assist on the LSLA Subcommittees

There are several newly established subcommittees of the LSLA including:

  • Events (social/dinners and education/lectures);
  • Communications (social media, website, newsletter, publications and PR consultants);
  • Law & Consultations; and
  • Bar Liaison, Court User Groups and other groups. 

Each subcommittee shall ideally be comprised of members of the LSLA Committee and other members of the LSLA.  In previous months’ newsletters we have sought volunteers to assist on these subcommittees.  The responses are being considered, but it is not too late for you to help. If you are interested in becoming involved with one of our subcommittees, please contact Alex Luke on lsla@aklsearch.co.uk identifying in which subcommittee you are interested.

List of Supervising Solicitors

As you might know the White Book refers to the LSLA maintaining details of individuals who might be able to act as supervising solicitors for the execution of Search Orders.  Our list continues to grow and is updated quarterly.  We invite those suitably qualified to provide us with their details, including relevant experience, for inclusion on the list.  Please send your details to Alex Luke at lsla@aklsearch.co.uk.

LSLA on Twitter

Our user name is LSLA1.   Do follow us, as we are tweeting information about the LSLA's events and lectures, submissions to consultations, and news of interest to litigators.  Please also encourage colleagues, friends and firms to do the same.

LSLA on LinkedIn

Both the LSLA and JLSLA have profiles on LinkedIn.  We have kept these as members’ only groups so there might be a slight delay in your being able to use the site initially.  The site will be used to:

  1. provide a members only discussion forum;
  2. encourage feedback and participation in consultations/debates;
  3. disseminate details of forthcoming events (including lectures, dinners etc.);
  4. circulate LSLA and JLSLA news;
  5. provide links to articles written by our members; and
  6. update members on any legal issues of interest.

Please do join our group at the following link: http://www.linkedin.com/groups/London-Solicitors-Litigation-Association-4545696/about?trk=anet_ug_grppro and encourage other members to do so. 

The profile for the JLSLA is at http://www.linkedin.com/groups/Junior-London-Solicitors-Litigation-Association-4438638/about?trk=anet_ug_grppro

OFFERS TO MEMBERS

“Shareholder Claims” by David Greene

One of our former Presidents and current Committee Member, David Greene, has written a book entitled “Shareholder Claims”.  Click on http://www.jordanpublishing.co.uk/shareholderclaimsleaflet to see a copy of the leaflet explaining the matters covered in it.

Jordan Publishing is offering LSLA members a 10% discount on the book.  To claim this discount, you must enter the promotion code 'S502X' at the checkout stage of an online order. Alternatively you can order the book by telephone by calling 0117 918 1492. Jordan has also said that it would be happy to discuss a further discount on bulk orders. If you would like more information on this, please call their sales team on 0117 918 1555.

THE JUNIOR LSLA

About the JLSLA

The JLSLA provides:

  • seminars designed to offer practical tips on procedural and substantive legal issues commonly faced by junior civil litigators, in an interactive and relaxed atmosphere;
  • networking events for members to meet and form contacts in their peer group; and
  • e-news on recent and future activity and key developments, with the aim of ensuring that the junior perspective is reflected in the LSLA's responses to consultation papers. 

Membership

The JLSLA is aimed at solicitors of 8 years PQE and less.  Members of the LSLA will automatically become members of the JLSLA if they qualify by year of admission and complete the relevant section of the membership form (copy attached).   

The JSLA also has firm Champions, who act as the point of contact between the JLSLA committee and their firm.

If you are interested in joining the JLSLA or being the JLSLA Champion for your firm, please contact the JLSLA President, Nikki Edwards, at nikkiedwards@quinnemanuel.com.

IMPORTANT LEGAL NEWS - THE NEW STANDARD BAR CONTRACT

As many of you will be aware, from 31 January 2013, there is a new standard Bar Contract in force, the terms of which has caused the Law Society to circulate a Note to all practitioners advising them of certain clauses in those terms which should be carefully considered (such as the limitation of liability and assumption of a duty of care to a solicitor’s client not that firm).  Many chambers are content to discuss individual arrangements but in the absence of such we should all be aware that these new standard terms might apply.

For a copy of the Law Society’s Note see http://www.lawsociety.org.uk/advice/practice-notes/instructing-a-barrister/.

The City of London Law Society and COMBAR have agreed alternative terms which have been approved by Bar Mutual.  Many sets of chambers have agreed to operate according to these terms.  Copies of the CLLS/COMBAR specimen agreement and guidance note are at http://www.citysolicitors.org.uk/Default.aspx?sID=993&lID=0.

LSLA - Recent Press

Since our last newsletter Committee Members of the LSLA have appeared in and written articles for several publications including:

  • Francesca Kaye was also quoted on 23 January 2013 by PLC and in January’s Claims Magazine on concerns being raised about delays in the announcement of the implementation of the Jackson Reforms;