The Law Society Gazette, 18 November 2004

Call for claims self-regulation

Solicitors have welcomed the government’s conclusion that the UK compensation culture is a myth, and have also supported its threat that claims farmers should face a ‘last chance saloon’ on regulation unless they conform to set standards. Unveiling the government’s response to the Better Regulation Task Force’s report on personal injury litigation last week, the lord chancellor, Lord Falconer, said he did not believe there was a litigation-happy society in the UK as personal injury claims had dropped by almost 10% in the past year.

16 November 1994

Women’s ‘no’ to wigs and court gowns

Wigs for advocates received a big thumbs down from women solicitors this week when they recommended that the lord chancellor abolish historic forms of court dress. Responding to Lord Mackay’s consultation paper, the Association of Women Solicitors called for ‘the abolition of wigs and gowns for all advocates’.

14 November 1984

Ethiopian famine

It is no longer possible for the world to ignore the Ethiopian famine in the hope that it will soon be ‘relieved’ in the course of time. The slow death of thousands, possibly hundreds of thousands, of men, women and especially children must capture the good intentions of the world’s politicians. The profession cannot stand idly by. It is inconceivable that every solicitor in the country would not wish to help in some way. Every MP must be contacted. Sufficient publicity has to be created so that Margaret Thatcher (pictured) is forced to make the same forcible demands of other governments for action as she made of the British armed forces in the Falklands conflict.

13 November 1974

The huge cost of buying newspapers

A full-page article in The Sunday Times on ‘The Huge Cost of Going to Law’ purports to be an informed study of the high cost of litigation… The truth is that the cost of going to law, as with the cost of running a newspaper, has to reflect the spiralling inflation which has occurred over recent years in wages, rent, paper, telephones and every other outgoing in the conduct of such an undertaking…

One way of reducing the cost of litigation is to avoid it. It has occurred to me that, similarly, I might reduce the cost of buying newspapers by eliminating The Sunday Times, which is the most expensive of them all. If 32,000 lawyers and their families and friends did likewise, we might be touching the only nerve to which, I suspect, they are sensitive.