The High Court ruling last week that said a lack of integrity on the part of a solicitor is the same as dishonesty could cause regulators real problems when prosecuting cases where they are not sure they have enough to establish dishonesty, it has been claimed.
New anti-money laundering regulations planned by the Treasury would impose “disproportionate and unnecessary” burdens on law firms, the Solicitors Regulation Authority has warned. It was particularly unhappy about a ‘criminality test’ for lawyers.
Insurance companies have referred 26 law firms to the Solicitors Regulation Authority in recent months through a new process that aims to “better facilitate exchange of information” between the regulator and the Insurance Fraud Bureau, it has emerged.
The failures which led to a record fine for Clyde & Co were “particularly glaring” as it was “a large and, previously, reputable firm”, the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal has declared in approving the sanction. It emerged earlier this month that the City practice had been fined £50,000 but the full ruling has only just been published.
Two partners found by the High Court to have displayed “manifest incompetence” in accepting £573,000 lent to their law firm by the controversial Axiom Legal Financing Fund, have been respectively suspended and fined by the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal.
A bankruptcy judge has set aside statutory demands worth nearly £800,000 issued by the Solicitors Regulation Authority against the founder of collapsed firm Blavo & Co, which were to cover the cost of shutting down what was the UK’s leading mental health practice.
A High Court judge has overturned a decision by the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal to strike off a former partner of national law firm Bond Dickinson, because the distinction it drew between acting without integrity and being dishonest meant the whole case against him was flawed.
The Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal struck off 35% more solicitors in the last calendar year than the one before, its annual report has revealed. Meanwhile, the legal costs awarded to the Solicitors Regulation Authority for bringing the prosecutions rocketed from £1.7m to over £3m – an increase of 76%.
A paralegal who secured a job on the back of a false CV and later faked letters to hide the fact that he had missed a court date has effectively been thrown out of the profession. Among other things, he claimed to have attended Yale University, whereas in fact he had just submitted a research paper for the law review, which was not published.
A solicitor who transferred nearly £1.3m to an offshore bank account in Belize has been suspended for a year for breaches of the money laundering regulations and accounts rules. A disciplinary tribunal said she have have unwittingly facilitated the movement of monies during the course of a suspected fraud.