All articles by Grania Langdon-Down – Page 5

  • News

    Regulated will-writing

    04 March 2013

    The decision by the Legal Services Board to recommend regulating will-writing – but not estate administration, power of attorney or trusts – has left private client practitioners bemused. It has also highlighted the divide between the LSB’s narrowly based review of individual activities and the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s belief that ...

  • News

    Pro bono - minding the gap


    The tough economic climate, coupled with the threat to frontline advice agencies from local authority and legal aid cuts, has dramatically increased demand for free legal help. National Pro Bono Week, which starts on 5 November, will focus attention on the question ‘is something better than nothing?’ as law firms ...

  • News

    Doing it yourself: the task for COLPs and COFAs


    When a solicitor drove off with a client’s file on the roof of their car and it was lost, reporting it as a ‘massive’ breach of the Code of Conduct was never in doubt for compliance and risk director Adele Jones.

  • News

    Family lawyers face turbulent year ahead


    Family law’s commercial and legal landscape is changing dramatically with the legal aid reforms, the continuing impact of the recession, competition from ABSs and potential legislative changes affecting everyone from the richest to the poorest. ‘I hate the phrase,’ says Andrew Newbury, head of Pannone’s ...

  • News

    Living and learning


    In a tough market where budgets are tight and clients are demanding more for less, lawyers are having to broaden their skill set to stay in the game. Black letter law is not enough - practitioners need to be able to relate it to clients’ practical problems, deal with risk ...

  • News

    Shifting the burden: support for stress


    The suicide last year of a senior local authority solicitor who felt unable to cope with the demands placed on him following a 30% cut to his department’s budget shocked the profession. The pressure to do more with less is evident across all areas of ...

  • News

    Conditional donations soar to SBA


    Conditional donations from unclaimed client funds to The SBA The Solicitors’ Charity increased by nearly 70% in 2011 to more than £1.1m compared with £650,000 in 2010, according to its annual report published yesterday.

  • News

    Mediations on the up, audit reveals


    The number of civil and commercial mediations has grown by one-third and their value by almost a half over the past two years, an authoritative study reveals this week. The Mediation Audit 2012, the dispute resolution body CEDR’s fifth biennial survey of civil and commercial ...

  • News

    Can mediation always rise to the occasion?


    The numbers of family and commercial mediations are growing - but while an elite group of commercial mediators is earning six figures, newcomers in both fields are finding it hard to gain the experience to break into the market. CEDR’s fifth mediation audit, published this week, shows the top commercial ...

  • News

    Legal training: the best routes to becoming a lawyer


    Abolishing the concept of the qualifying law degree, more common training for prospective lawyers, replacing the training contract with ‘supervised practice’ and sector-wide CPD – just some of the ‘more radical’ ideas being considered by the profession-wide Legal Education and Training Review (LETR). But just ...

  • News

    The training contract: which way forward?


    In a rapidly changing legal services market, just how fit for purpose is the training contract in ensuring access to the profession is open and diverse and in preparing the next generation of lawyers? The profession-wide Legal Education and Training Review (LETR) is asking tough questions about how and when ...

  • News

    Foot in the door


    Work experience is now seen as critical to securing a training contract, but with hundreds of students vying for every vacation scheme place and badgering firms of all sizes for work experience, how fair is the competition? In 2009, former Labour minister Alan Milburn’s Fair ...

  • News

    Litigants in person could struggle to secure access to justice


    The prospect of a huge increase in litigants fighting their cases themselves in the face of legal aid cutbacks has prompted dire warnings from judges, magistrates, practitioners and support groups about the impact this will have on access to justice. They also fear that HM Courts and Tribunals Service’s plans ...

  • News

    Expert witnesses could challenge fees cap


    Expert witnesses in family courts are considering legal action over a new cap on experts’ fees in legally aided cases, which can be much lower for witnesses based in London than elsewhere. Dr Judith Freedman, convenor of the 500-strong Consortium of Expert Witnesses in the ...

  • News

    Is gaining the formal qualification of an MBA time and money well spent?


    Ask those with MBA after their name what it was like combining high-level studying with a full-time job and they don’t pull any punches - ‘horrendous’, ‘hellish’, ‘think it will be hard and then multiply that 100 times’. But ask are they glad they did it, and the answer is ...

  • News

    Lawyers working at quangos can get support


    With the government’s controversial Public Bodies Bill promising a ‘bonfire of the quangos’, lawyers working in the sector are facing an unsettled future, with increasing demands to do more within shrinking budgets. The bill, currently making its way through parliament, will allow ministers, by order, to abolish, merge or transfer ...

  • News

    Education is supporting lawyers to advise professionals


    Demand from lawyers for specialist non-legal courses has prompted one of the key providers of legal training to move their short professional development courses from the law school to the business school. BPP is refocusing its classroom courses for lawyers to offer financially based or ...

  • News

    Making the grade: examining accreditation schemes


    A campaign to raise public awareness of the Law Society’s accreditation schemes and their value in helping people choose firms or specialist practitioners in increasingly competitive markets will be launched shortly. There is growing interest within the profession about the schemes.

  • News

    Family lawyers face up to challenges ahead


    Family law is facing an unprecedented year of change, with practitioners under intense pressure to be innovative if they want to maintain the viability of their practices. Some family law departments are already downsizing, or are being closed, as experienced practitioners move firms or set ...

  • News

    How more devolved powers in Wales could affect the law


    Wales goes to the polls on 3 March to vote on whether the National Assembly’s law-making powers in the 20 devolved areas should be extended. It has already started building a body of law with a distinctive Welsh flavour, despite the tortuous process put in place in 2006 that requires ...