The professional indemnity insurer of an insolvent law firm is not required to repay the £581,000 a disbursement funder lost due to the firm’s breach of contract, the Supreme Court has ruled. The justices overturned the Court of Appeal by 4-1.
Solicitors’ professional indemnity insurers paid out around £2bn due to negligence claims in the 10 years to 2014, startling new figures released yesterday by the Solicitors Regulation Authority revealed. The regulator said that around 142,000 claims were made in that decade, one in five of which was successful.
The High Court has thrown out a £5m fraud and conspiracy claim against a newly qualified solicitor and experienced legal executive who acted for a Docklands developer. Mr Justice Mann said the pair had suffered “years of anxiety” as a result of the claim, “culminating in a trial which they should not have had”.
A finance company for law firms has announced that it wants to delist from the stock exchange as it awaits a crucial Supreme Court ruling. It is the first of two Supreme Court cases that focus on interpretation of the minimum terms and conditions for solicitors’ insurance, the second of which was before the justices yesterday.
In what is being hailed as a significant victory for conveyancers, a law firm and estate agency have defeated a claim brought against them after it turned out that the seller they acted for was a fraudster. The fraud only came to light when the real owner walked past his property and saw builders ripping out the kitchen.
Law firms that were insured by the now insolvent Enterprise Insurance have until today to arrange alternative cover. The Solicitors Regulation Authority said on Friday that around two-thirds of the 43 firms that were with the Gibraltar-based insurer have already secured alternative cover.
The Legal Services Board has shied away from recommending a single solution which all the legal regulators should follow on indemnity insurance. The LSB instead called on the regulators to work more closely together on the issue.
Leigh Day “breached duty” to thousands of Trafigura claimants who did not receive share of £30m settlement
Leading group action law firm Leigh Day has been found guilty of professional negligence after 6,624 of the claimants it represented in the high-profile Trafigura case were not paid their share of the £30m settlement. Leigh Day said it tried its “damnedest” to ensure everyone received their payments.
The High Court has summarily dismissed a professional negligence claim brought by a hotel company against Midlands firm Wright Hassall and a barrister, Max Mallin. The case involved the conversion of a Victorian office building in Manchester into a four-star hotel.
The Council for Licensed Conveyancers (CLC) is planning to introduce solicitor-style indemnity insurance arrangements, in a bid to make it easier for law firms to switch regulator. Embracing an open market scheme instead of a master policy would help “make a reality” of the “theoretical” freedom of law firms to change.