Market monitor

ABS round-up: Sports law firm plans to bring anti-doping science in-house, plus much more

Maria Sharapova

A London-based sports law firm that counts among its clients the tennis star Maria Sharapova and world champion cyclist Lizzie Armistead, has become an alternative business structure with the aim of bringing analysis of substances in-house. We also round up ABS news from Crawford Legal, Gateley, Express Solicitors and Redde.

October 27th, 2016

Tory MPs lobby Truss to get on with whiplash reform

Chris Philp

A group of Conservative MPs will next week lobby justice secretary Liz Truss to press ahead with the proposed personal injury reforms. Last week it emerged that the long-awaited consultation on raising the small claims limit and removing general damages for low-value soft-tissue injuries has been unexpectedly put on the backburner.

October 19th, 2016

MPs start probe into impact of Brexit on legal services market


MPs have launched an inquiry into the implications of Brexit for the justice system, including what it means for lawyers themselves. The justice select committee said it wanted to present the government with “recommendations concerning the questions which it will need to address in the eventual Brexit negotiation process”.

October 13th, 2016

Knights shifts from private equity to direct lending to fund next stage of growth

David Beech

Fast-growing alternative business structure Knights Professional Services has moved on from private equity funding and giving away an ownership stake, and turned to a major European lender to finance to next stage of its expansion. We revealed last month that James Caan has sold his stake in the firm.

October 12th, 2016

Merger mania takes hold up and down the country

Hugh James merger pic

There has been the usual spate of law firm mergers and acquisitions up and down the country coinciding with the end of the traditional indemnity year, including the continuing growth of national crime firm Tuckers and a Scottish firm entering England for the first time.

October 10th, 2016

Exclusive: leading chambers sets up international law firm

Christine Kings LF Conf

Outer Temple Chambers has taken the unprecedented step of setting up what is effectively a separate international law firm, employing a solicitor. Outer Temple International, a Bar Standards Board-regulated entity, has now secured insurance and is set to go live this week.

October 6th, 2016

Growing Sheffield law firm exits QualitySolicitors over “brand conflict”

Jeremy Brooke

Sheffield law firm SSB Law has left the QualitySolicitors network to focus on its own brand instead at a time when it says “the traditional law firm approach has a limited future”. It said it joined because “there was a basis for a national brand” but over time there was “an increasing conflict” with its own brand.

October 4th, 2016

PwC Legal to be absorbed into accountancy firm’s wider business

Shirley Brookes

PwC – the first of the ‘big four’ accountants to gain an alternative business structure (ABS) licence – has become a true multi-disciplinary practice by merging its connected law firm into the wider business, in a move that has been welcomed by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

September 30th, 2016

Exclusive: James Caan exits law firm investment

knights solicitors

Leading investor James Caan has sold his stake in Staffordshire-based law firm Knights Professional Services, Legal Futures can reveal. Mr Caan invested in Knights in 2012, since when the firm has grown its turnover from £8m to £40m and added complementary services to its core legal offering.

September 28th, 2016

PI Futures: government reforms may have been delayed but “they’re coming”

Carson Kaye, Solicitors, London

The personal injury reforms (PI) first announced 10 months ago are still coming, despite the Brexit hiatus – so claimant lawyers have to be prepared, they were told at last week’s PI Futures conference in Liverpool. The default assumption had to be that change would happen.

September 26th, 2016