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Expert Witness blog: 28/05/2012

Your Expert Witness blogAs has been mentioned before, there is a campaign being waged among junior lawyers in the Law Society to resist moves to abolish the minimum salary for trainee solicitors. The Junior Lawyers Division of the society has branded the decision to deregulate as having "effectively slammed the door shut in the faces of those from lower socio-economic groups trying to enter the profession". Now the opinion has emerged that women will be 'disproportionately affected' by the move. The opinion is that of...erm, the Association of Women Solicitors (AWS).

AWS chairwoman Joy Van-Cooten and AWS Law Society Council member Sarah Austin issued a joint statement, in which they said: "We are concerned it will discourage able women away from the profession and the result will be a return to a less diverse profession that will reflect practitioners' means rather than their merit." They didn't say why.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 June 2012 11:12

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Expert Witness blog: 16/05/2012

Your Expert Witness blogThose of you who think lawyers are stuffy and un-cool, think again! The Wimbledon office of Morrisons' solicitors has been advising their local high school in the Young Enterprise competition, a Europe-wide competition that encourages groups of school and college students to set up a business for a year. And the company – called QuickZip (yes, with a 'Q') – won the Most Innovative Product prize in the regional final.

The product, a shirt that can be adapted to formal or informal functions, can be bought on e-Bay. In a press release Morrisons' announced it would be continuing to advise the school, Raynes Park in south west London, for this year's competition.

The community initiative was lauded by legal sit vacs site Professionals in Law, in its Epilogue news section. Also on the site, Morrisons' is advertising for...an insolvency solicitor. Different office, I hasten to add: the vacancy is in Woking.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 June 2012 11:13

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Expert Witness blog: 09/05/2012

Your Expert Witness blogWith half the economies of Europe going down the pan – and the other half already there – it is appropriate that one of the issues most exercising the legal world is that of wills and probate. Last month the Legal Services Board published proposals to make will writing and estate administration 'reserved activities'. The justification for the proposal is that it would allow for regulation of the activities and the protection of consumers.

Quoted in the Law Society Gazette, the LSB said that "too often consumers were subjected to unfair sales practices...and indeed the incidence of fraud, was also disappointing".

Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 June 2012 11:16

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Expert Witness blog: 30/04/2012

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The World Society for the Protection of Animals has taken the opportunity of the London Mayoral elections to campaign publicly for the budget of the Met's Wildlife Crime Unit to be restored to previous levels. The society claims three out of four of the candidates have committed to the cause, the exception being Boris Johnson.

It is no surprise that Ken Livingston was an early committer to the cause – his support for wildlife is well known, stemming from his lifelong interest in amphibians. Similarly, the Green Party's Jenny Jones would have little claim to be standing for that party if she were not committed to stamping out such abominations as the illegal trade in rhino horn and big cat fur.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 June 2012 11:16

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Expert Witness blog: 18/04/2012

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The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders (LASPO) Bill is now back in the Commons, where it is expected that, of the 11 amendments made to it in the Lords, all but three will be reversed. The main target, according to the Law Society Gazette, is the restoration of Legal Aid for children.

Another amendment to be overturned is one to retain the provision of expert witness reports in clinical negligence cases. Put together, the two offer little redress for children suffering such grievances.

According to campaigning group JustRights, recently released figures show that 16% of children now receiving help with legal fees will lose out.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 June 2012 11:38

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