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SDT – multi-party cases

In a professional disciplinary case, the SRA and the solicitor can reach a settlement.

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Courts – reductions

The government has announced that it will reduce court staffing numbers from 16,500 to 10,000 by 2022.

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Professional – update

The SRA proposes that the Compensation Fund would effectively be transformed into a ‘Hardship’ Fund (ie only for those wronged clients who are most in need). 
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Witness – evidence

A trial witness must not discuss their evidence while they are under oath. The importance of this was illustrated in a recent ET case when the applicant spoke to a journalist during a break in the course of giving her evidence.
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Conduct – honesty or integrity?

To what extent are ‘honesty’ and ‘integrity’ synonymous for SRA disciplinary purposes? 
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Money laundering – update

The SRA has updated its guidance on MLR responsibilities. This new guidance is far more prescriptive of the measures that firms must take to ensure compliance.

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Professional – update

 A reminder that internal e-mails can result in SRA action; for a case involving sexist, racist and homophobic e-mails sent to a work colleague see [2018] LSG 12 February 2.

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Clients – advice warning?

To what extent should you warn a client that your advice may be wrong? The answer is that a warning should be given when there is a ‘significant risk’ about the construction or interpretation of the law.

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Professional – update

Allegations of sexual harassment made against solicitors and those working in legal practice must be reported to the SRA. Harassment includes ‘patronising’ sexism, taunting or predatory behaviour. A solicitor who ‘engages in sexual harassment’ is likely to have breached SRA principles and the Code of Conduct (including a failure to uphold the law or to act with integrity). This guidance comes from the Law Society and is far more unequivocal than previous statements. See [2017] LSG 27 November 1.

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Professional – update

There was much publicity about the Supreme Court decision involving the professional gambler who successfully ran a ‘sting’ against Crockfords. In essence, the court decided that the issue of whether conduct is honest or dishonest is applied using an objective standard; there is no longer a requirement that the defendant must appreciate that what they have done is ‘dishonest’.

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IHT – personal representatives’ liability
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PRs are personally liable for paying IHT on an estate, even where the beneficiaries undertake to pay it themselves but do not do so, the court has confirmed. Read more...
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In this article, the author (who represented the appellant) considers the making of hospital orders in criminal proceedings, and the use of hybrid orders, following a Court of Appeal ruling. Read more...

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