UK first as Ulster University launches legal innovation centre

Professor Paddy Nixon

Ulster University launched the UK’s first legal innovation centre last night, bringing together its law school, school of computing and intelligent systems, and global law firms Allen & Overy and Baker McKenzie. It aims to operate at the intersection between legal process innovation, technology and access to justice.

February 21st, 2017

Two law firms ‘named and shamed’ over minimum wage breaches

Fifty pence piece

Two law firms have found themselves ‘named and shamed’ in the government’s latest list of businesses that failed to pay workers the national minimum wage – although for one of them it amounted to an underpayment of 50p a week.

February 17th, 2017

The SRA’s “folly”? Lawyers warn over changes to training of would-be solicitors

City of London insignia

City solicitors, regional solicitors, consumers and the Law Society have all pushed back at the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s plans to reduce the two years that students have to spend in workplace training before qualifying.

January 18th, 2017

Partner fails in passing-off claim against ex-firm that used her name in branding

trade mark symbol

A solicitor’s passing-off claim against her old firm for continuing to use her name as part of its branding has been thrown out by the court because the law firm owned the goodwill generated by her work. However, she did have a case to revoke the trade mark registered after the firm hired her to set up an employment practice.

December 23rd, 2016

MoJ plan to impose fixed-term contracts on judges “could be unlawful”

Ministry of Justice sign

Plans by the Ministry of Justice to impose fixed-term contracts on fee- paid judges could be unlawful, the Bar Council has warned. The move has also been strongly attacked by the Law Society, which said solicitors could in future see judicial appointment as a gamble with their careers at their firms.

December 21st, 2016

Legal profession part of the problem as commission says social mobility is getting worse

Alan Milburn

Privately educated people still dominate the legal profession, with barriers to entry for those from less affluent backgrounds are even more acute at the Bar than among solicitors, the Social Mobility Commission said yesterday.

November 17th, 2016

ULaw forced to stop calling itself “UK’s leading law school”

Generic images of the facilities at the University of Law - main entrance.

The University of Law is to stop claiming that it is the “leading” law school in the UK in the wake of a ruling by the Advertising Standards Authority. The watchdog upheld a complaint about an advert published by ULaw after finding the evidence supplied by the university incompatible with such a claim.

November 16th, 2016

Truss throws down gauntlet to profession on diversity as she plans more routes to bench

Liz Truss

There need to be more women and ethnic minorities at senior levels of law firms and taking silk, the Lord Chancellor said yesterday as she pledged action to “force the pace of change” in improving diversity in the legal profession. She announced new measures to encourage experienced lawyers from all fields – and especially solicitors – to seek senior judicial roles.

November 10th, 2016

Tribunal starts hearing competition law action brought against Law Society

Law Society - Front1

The Competition Appeal Tribunal will today begin hearing a training provider’s claim that the Law Society acted anti-competitively by requiring law firms to buy its own training in order to maintain their Conveyancing Quality Scheme accreditation.

November 8th, 2016

Employed barristers call for greater recognition of their abilities

Chantal-Aimée Doerries

The majority at the employed Bar “do not feel supported or that their work is recognised”, both by the self-employed Bar and the Bar Council, research released yesterday by the latter has found. It said employed barristers enjoyed financial security, with average salaries around the £70,000 mark.

November 4th, 2016