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Professional & Financial Risks

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Rise of accountancy profession in China

Published on 22 April 2013. By David Smyth, Senior Partner, Hong Kong

The accountancy profession is on the rise in China.

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Size does matter – risk of potential claims against estate agents

Published on 17 April 2013. By Alexandra Anderson, Partner

A recent Financial Times article has highlighted a potential risk area for estate agents.

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Court of Appeal gives judgment on the potential liability of solicitors for a non-party costs order

Published on 11 April 2013. By Simy Khanna, Senior Associate

In two joined cases , the Court of Appeal considered the potential liability of solicitors for a non-party costs order, if they fund disbursements.

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NEWS: Scullion appeal to Supreme Court withdrawn – no duty of care owed by mortgage valuer to BTL investors – relief for valuers and their insurers

10 April 2013

The appeal by buy-to-let (BTL) investor Mr Scullion – due for hearing at the Supreme Court today – was withdrawn on confidential terms this morning.

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The official line – how Judges are being instructed to implement Jackson costs reforms

08 April 2013

A recent speech at the Judicial College by the Master of the Rolls (Lord Dyson) shows precisely how Judges are being instructed to implement two key aspects of the Jackson costs reforms:

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Follow landmark valuers 'duty of care' hearing (Scullion) live next week

05 April 2013

In 2011 the Appeal Court decided unanimously that the valuer's duty of care, when reporting to its lender client, should not extend to cover a buy-to-let investor (as distinct from a residential purchaser):

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The trigger for liability coverage - actual liability or reasonable settlement?

26 March 2013

On 28 February 2013 judgment was delivered in the case of AstraZeneca Insurance Company Limited v XL Insurance (Bermuda) Limited and ACE Bermuda Insurance Limited [2013] EWHC 349.

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Robust judicial case management in action

15 March 2013

In a Judgment handed down on 14 March 2013, the Court has sent a powerful message to all parties, and to their solicitors, about the immediate and painful financial consequences of 'manoeuvring' and seeking to frustrate effective judicial case management.

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LSB request rejected: SRA confirm no review into separate business rule

Published on 14 March 2013. By Katherine Roberts, Senior Associate

The Solicitors Regulation Authority ("SRA") have rejected the Legal Services Board ("LSB") request that they conduct a review of the separate business rule ("SBR"), as it is not in the public interest to do so and the necessary resources are not available.

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No Fishing!

11 March 2013

A recent High Court decision has reminded Claimants that pre-action disclosure applications cannot be used as fishing expeditions to form or strengthen any unsubstantiated claims.

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New Sanctions Guidance For Accountants and Actuaries' Investigations

08 March 2013

The Financial Reporting Council ("FRC") has published its first Sanctions Guidance for individuals and member firms under investigation.

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The rush for ATE – and the risk of claims arising

Published on 06 March 2013. By Victoria Paxton, Associate

After-the-event insurance premiums have been a plague to surveyors, who have borne the brunt of claims arising from the property crash.

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Flood risk insurability – are you exposed?

20 February 2013

On 1 July 2013, barring unexpected developments, flood risk insurance for residential property will move to the open market leaving an estimated 200,000 properties exposed to the possibility of severe capital value reductions.

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Final curtain call

Published on 19 February 2013. By Jonathan Wyles, Legal Director

On 14 February 2013 the Court of Appeal in Miller v Sutton [2013] EWCA Civ brought to an end a long running campaign by Mr Miller against his former solicitor in relation to his failed business selling Jimi Hendrix CDs.

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Take care of your letterhead ...

Published on 14 February 2013. By Sally Lord, Associate

In UCB Home Loans Corporation Ltd v Soni & Co the Court of Appeal has found that a partner in a solicitor's firm was not liable under the S14 Partnership Act 1980 for fraudulent representations made by another partner to a mortgage lender.

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Lenders' contributory negligence - a blunted blade?

11 February 2013

Notwithstanding the growing impact of limitation defences, many UK lenders' portfolios remain exposed.

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Clarification of solicitors' breach of trust claims in a re-mortgage situation

Published on 11 February 2013. By Jonathan Wyles, Legal Director

The Court of Appeal on 8 February 2013 in AIB Group (UK) plc v Mark Redler & Co [2013] EWCA Civ 45 has provided further clarification of the necessary ingredients to establish breach of trust by solicitors in a lender's claim.

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Engineer held liable for losses caused by the fall in property values

Published on 06 February 2013. By Alexandra Anderson, Partner

An engineer may be liable to his client for losses caused by a fall in property values. So held the Court of Appeal in the case of John Grimes Partnership Ltd v Gubbins.

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Annual Review 2012/13

01 February 2013

2013 is set to be a turbulent year across many classes of insurance business, especially those which will be affected by the Jackson Reforms revolution in the UK.

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RICS guidance note on Risk

31 January 2013

As a profession, surveyors (and their insurers) have been hit very badly as a result of claims arising from the credit crunch.

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New standard terms for Bar creating controversy

Published on 29 January 2013. By Sally Lord, Associate

The Law Society yesterday issued a practice note on the new standard contractual terms for the supply of legal services of barristers. These rules are due to come into effect in January 2013.

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The Court of Appeal's decision in Henry v News Group Newspapers: costs budgeting

Published on 28 January 2013. By Claire McNicholl, Senior Associate

Costs budgeting is one of the key planks of the Jackson reforms due in force on 1 April 2013.

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Have you notified a claim?

Published on 25 January 2013. By Jonathan Wyles, Legal Director

How precise do you need to be when notifying your professional indemnity insurers of a possible claim?

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Legal advice privilege remains for qualified lawyers only

Published on 23 January 2013. By Robert Morris, Partner

The Supreme Court has today rejected an attempt to extend legal advice privilege to legal advice given by professionals other than lawyers.

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Accountants' Duty of Care to Third Parties

Published on 21 January 2013. By Anna Murley, Senior Associate

In a welcome reminder of a long established principle, the High Court decision in the October 2012 case of Arrowhead Capital Finance Limited v KPMG

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The dangers of being helpful with evidence…

Published on 18 January 2013. By Alexandra Anderson, Partner

Developers' fraud proceedings against Chartered Surveyors struck out as "unjust harassment"

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Legal Ombudsman scheme rules revision

09 January 2013

The Legal Ombudsman is about to make significant changes to its role, widening its current powers and coming into line with the role of the Financial Ombudsman.

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Breach of trust: the new contributory negligence avoidance scheme for lenders

Published on 04 January 2013. By Sally Lord, Associate

In the current climate, the majority of claims we are instructed to defend solicitors against, are being brought by lenders, in the conveying context.

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Non-Party Costs Order against Solicitors acting on CFAs

Published on 03 January 2013. By Sally Lord, Associate

In the recent case of Tinseltime Limited, the Defendants made an application for a non-party costs order against the Claimant's solicitor.

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When a financial adviser will be liable for the full extent of a client's losses

Published on 03 January 2013. By Ben Gold, Legal Director

For banks, investment advisers, and their professional indemnity insurers, the Court of Appeal ruling in Rubenstein v HSBC

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Bump-up claims: the next wave of US shareholder litigation against US-listed Chinese companies?

03 January 2013

A growing number of US-listed Chinese companies have had enough of being sued by their American shareholders.

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LIBOR Update

Published on 03 January 2013. By Mike Allan, Of Counsel

On 27 June, it was revealed that Barclays had agreed to pay fines totalling £290 million ...

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The Cost of Regulation in the Legal Profession

Published on 02 January 2013. By Tom Lloyd, Senior Associate

The Legal Services Board ("LSB") was created by the Legal Services Act 2007 and became fully operational on 1 January 2010.

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The FSA shifts its focus to individuals

06 December 2012

As part of its response to the Financial Crisis, the FSA is determined to pursue directors and senior managers and hold them to account for their company's failings.

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Interest Rate Hedging Products Mis-selling

Published on 06 December 2012. By James Wickes, Partner

On Friday 29 June 2012, the FSA published its initial report on the mis-selling of Interest Rate Hedging Products ("IRHP") to SME businesses, following a two month investigation.

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No Cherry Picking documents by claimants once privilege has been waived

Published on 05 December 2012. By Sally Lord, Associate

In cases where solicitors are sued by their clients, a common issue to arise is the extent to which the privilege attaching to the solicitor's papers is waived as a result of the Claimant's allegations.

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Insurance broker commissions in the headlines in Hong Kong

Published on 05 December 2012.

Insurance broker commissions in Hong Kong are attracting more attention in Hong Kong than, perhaps, the market would like.

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Leo's "name and shame": The right approach?

Published on 27 November 2012. By Sally Lord, Associate

The Legal Ombudsman (LEO) was established by the Office for Legal Complaints under the Legal Services Act 2007 to try and simplify the system and make sure consumers have access to an independent expert to resolve complaints.

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Duties of a Project Manager

16 November 2012

The recent judgment of HHJ Keyser QC in the TCC in The Trustees of Ampleforth Abbey Trust v Turner & Townsend Project Management Ltd [2012] EWHC 2137 (TCC) provides helpful guidance on the duties of a project manager ...

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Delay claims under NEC3

16 November 2012

In order to prove a delay claim under NEC3, a contractor must follow a two step-process to show that (i) a compensation event has occurred; and (ii) that this event caused a delay to the completion of the project.

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The FSA wants further enforcement powers – take note

Published on 06 November 2012. By Ben Gold, Legal Director

In submissions to the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards (published today), the FSA has made a request for wider enforcement powers, which directors and officers and employees of regulated entities, and their insurers, should take notice of.

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Lender claim founders – losses "caused" by underlying fraud

Published on 25 October 2012. By Helene Lee, Legal Director

Surveyors come out on top. Judgment was recently given inPlatform Funding v Anderson Associates, a civil claim by the mortgage lender for alleged negligence against a valuer arising from a July 2006 mortgage valuation of a single new-build flat.

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Who Knows?

Published on 11 October 2012. By Ben Gold, Legal Director

As part of its consultation paper, 'Insurance Contract Law: The Business Insured's Duty of Disclosure and the Law of Warranties', the Law Commission has made some interesting comments on the imputation of knowledge to companies for the purposes of the duty of disclosure under section 18(1) of the Marine Insurance Act 1906.

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Collateral Warranties – Tips and Pitfalls

21 September 2012

Collateral warranties are extremely common in the construction industry.

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Solicitors not under a duty to ensure that court staff issue in time

Published on 30 August 2012. By Laura Stocks, Senior Associate

This case Page v Hewetts Solicitors caused a stir back in November when the high court held that a claim form was statute barred notwithstanding evidence it had been received by the court in time.

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Causation key to failure of lender's claim against solicitors

Published on 30 August 2012. By Jonathan Wyles, Legal Director

Causation was the key factor in the failure of a claim brought by mortgage lender Godiva, against its solicitors, Keepers Legal.

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Solicitors not under a duty to ensure that court staff issue in time

Published on 15 June 2012. By Laura Stocks, Senior Associate

This case Page v Hewetts Solicitors caused a stir back in November when the high court held that a claim form was statute barred notwithstanding evidence it had been received by the court in time.

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