Market Report: IP Disputes – Strong and stable

Market Report: IP Disputes – Strong and stable

Despite Brexit uncertainty with the launch of Europe’s central patent court, Dominic Carman finds plenty for IP litigators to get their teeth into

Case volumes in intellectual property (IP) remain, to borrow a phrase, strong and stable. ‘We’ve not seen much variation in terms of the number of cases in front of the UK Patents Court,’ says Gareth Morgan, IP partner at CMS UK. ‘We monitor claim forms on a monthly basis: typically, there are between 100 and 125 cases issued every year in the Patents Court, of which somewhere between ten and 20 go to trial.’ Continue reading “Market Report: IP Disputes – Strong and stable”

Disputes round-up: SFO abandons privilege appeal as funder Burford raises £193m

Disputes round-up: SFO abandons privilege appeal as funder Burford raises £193m

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has cut its losses after last month’s landmark Court of Appeal privilege judgment, opting not to appeal the decision.

In the case against the Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation (ENRC), the SFO was denied access to a series of documents that the mining giant claimed were protected by legal professional privilege (LPP).   Continue reading “Disputes round-up: SFO abandons privilege appeal as funder Burford raises £193m”

Disputes Eye: Hunting krakens – As finance and Russian work slows veteran litigators look to key trends and opportunities

Disputes Eye: Hunting krakens – As finance and Russian work slows veteran litigators look to key trends and opportunities

As the torrent of post-financial crisis litigation continues to slow, litigators are increasingly wondering: ‘What next?’ Certainly, 2018 has so far been quieter than 2017 from a disputes perspective, across big-ticket and mid-level matters.

Canvassing industry veterans on the trends to watch, however, shows plenty of areas of opportunity litigators spy on the horizon. Perhaps the most talked-up area right now is the prospect of litigation linked to this year’s implementation of GDPR, the EU-wide regime updating data protection and privacy law. The complexity of the legislation, and potential fines of up to 4% of global turnover for companies that breach the new rules, unsurprisingly means many lawyers forecast plenty of compliance and enforcement-related work. Continue reading “Disputes Eye: Hunting krakens – As finance and Russian work slows veteran litigators look to key trends and opportunities”

Comment: Disputes Eye – An English court in Paris: another warning shot

Comment: Disputes Eye – An English court in Paris: another warning shot

There is a certain irony to be found in France’s enthusiastic uptake of English courts just as the UK detaches itself from the EU, an irony accompanied by a realistic fear of weakening the English judiciary.

Of course, the introduction of an English-language common law commercial court in Paris is nothing new for the continent, with similar proposals already taking form in Belgium and Germany. However, the Parisians have recently upped their marketing drive, announcing a flat court fee of €100 to contest the Rolls Building’s less-than-competitive entry price of up to £10,000. Continue reading “Comment: Disputes Eye – An English court in Paris: another warning shot”

Debevoise next up as Tchenguiz drops Stephenson Harwood after €2bn claim fails

Debevoise next up as Tchenguiz drops Stephenson Harwood after €2bn claim fails

Property tycoon Robert Tchenguiz has replaced longstanding legal adviser Stephenson Harwood with Debevoise & Plimpton after his €2bn claim against an Abu Dhabi investment company was thrown out.

A Debevoise team, led by disputes partner Kevin Lloyd, took over future Tchenguiz mandates, including a key Commercial Court case later this year. Tchenguiz had only drafted in Stephenson Harwood in 2014 to replace Shearman & Sterling in his later-settled case against the Serious Fraud Office (SFO). Continue reading “Debevoise next up as Tchenguiz drops Stephenson Harwood after €2bn claim fails”

Disputes Eye: An English court in Paris – another warning shot

Disputes Eye: An English court in Paris – another warning shot

There is a certain irony to be found in France’s enthusiastic uptake of English courts just as the UK detaches itself from the EU, an irony accompanied by a realistic fear of weakening the English judiciary.

Of course, the introduction of an English-language common law commercial court in Paris is nothing new for the continent, with similar proposals already taking form in Belgium and Germany. However, the Parisians have recently upped their marketing drive, announcing a flat court fee of €100 to contest the Rolls Building’s less-than-competitive entry price of up to £10,000. Continue reading “Disputes Eye: An English court in Paris – another warning shot”

Rosenblatt unveils third-party funding ambitions following £43m float

Rosenblatt unveils third-party funding ambitions following £43m float

London litigation specialist Rosenblatt became the fourth UK firm to list in May, simultaneously revealing plans to establish a third-party disputes funding division.

Rosenblatt raised £43m in its AIM flotation, giving the 21-partner outfit a £76m market capitalisation in what it described as a ‘significantly oversubscribed’ listing. In terms of value, it was the largest law firm initial public offering (IPO) in the UK to date. This could change with Knights’ listing slated to take place this summer. Continue reading “Rosenblatt unveils third-party funding ambitions following £43m float”

Disputes Eye: A no-brainer? How tech can save your client £2m

Disputes Eye: A no-brainer? How tech can save your client £2m

With proposed procedural overhauls to disclosure going down like a lead balloon with the Law Society, technology is being touted as the much-needed saviour of time and money.

News in May that Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (BCLP) declared itself the first firm to win a significant court victory on the back of using document review technology gave hope. Continue reading “Disputes Eye: A no-brainer? How tech can save your client £2m”

SFO makes interim director appointment as Linklaters hires DPP Alison Saunders

SFO makes interim director appointment as Linklaters hires DPP Alison Saunders

The white-collar crime arena has seen significant upheaval in recent weeks, with the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) making an uninspiring interim appointment to replace director David Green QC, while Linklaters has hired the divisive Alison Saunders, the current director of public prosecutions (DPP).

Mark Thompson, formerly the SFO’s chief operating officer (COO), took over from the previous incumbent on a temporary basis on 21 April. In an SFO press release, Thompson had said: ‘The search for a new director has been successful, although the individual cannot take up the post immediately.’ Continue reading “SFO makes interim director appointment as Linklaters hires DPP Alison Saunders”

The future of disputes debate: The justice brand

The future of disputes debate: The justice brand

Alex Novarese, Legal Business: Will the UK legal system be more or less trusted post Brexit?

Abhijit Mukhopadhyay, Hinduja Group: As a business, we trust English law and the English courts. Whenever we do business in any part of the world, unless it is in the US, we always go for English law. So long as the courts remain a brand – and they will, irrespective of whether Brexit happens – London will be attractive. Continue reading “The future of disputes debate: The justice brand”