Market Report: Tax Litigation – Introducing the hard line

Market Report: Tax Litigation – Introducing the hard line

Post Brexit, HMRC is renewing its litigation focus on corporate tax evasion, enhanced by new powers to investigate corporate criminal offences. Dominic Carman reports

Like stargazing through a telescope, tax disputes look back in time. The typical gestation period between issues first catching HMRC’s attention and a dispute reaching court can take up to five years, sometimes longer. Nick Skerrett (pictured), head of contentious tax at Simmons & Simmons, says there has been a maturation of the governance processes within HMRC. ‘It is starting to bed down and HMRC has become more adept in its approach to working out those cases that it ultimately wants to come before the courts from those that it does not,’ he says. Continue reading “Market Report: Tax Litigation – Introducing the hard line”

Coronavirus latest: Supreme Court goes virtual as junior lawyers plea against postponing exams

Coronavirus latest: Supreme Court goes virtual as junior lawyers plea against postponing exams

For the first time in its history, the Supreme Court conducted a case entirely through video conferencing this morning (24 March), after taking the decision to close its building to the public due to the spread of Covid-19.

The move saw the matter of Fowler (Respondent) v Commissioners for Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (Appellant) conducted virtually, with all cases and judgment hand-downs set to continue via video conferencing until further notice. The measures will see legal teams and counsel, as well as each of the justices, located separately. Continue reading “Coronavirus latest: Supreme Court goes virtual as junior lawyers plea against postponing exams”

‘This raises serious questions’: More SFO failure as former Barclays execs escape fraud convictions

‘This raises serious questions’: More SFO failure as former Barclays execs escape fraud convictions

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) is facing criticism after suffering another high-profile defeat in its only financial crisis prosecution after three former Barclays bankers were today (28 February) acquitted of fraud.

Barclays’ ex-investment banking chief, Roger Jenkins, its ex-European financial institutions head, Richard Boath and the former head of its wealth division, Thomas Kalaris, were all accused of creating fraudulent advisory services agreements as a means to disguise payments worth £322m to Qatar. Continue reading “‘This raises serious questions’: More SFO failure as former Barclays execs escape fraud convictions”

City’s new disputes hub launches home for independent arbitrators

City’s new disputes hub launches home for independent arbitrators

The team behind the City’s new cutting-edge arbitration centre has launched a membership service for independent practitioners, with full clerking and admin support as well as a home in the heart of London’s legal community.

The new business, Int-Arb Arbitrators, is backed by the International Arbitration Centre (IAC), the world-class disputes hub launched last year at a four-floor site at 190 Fleet Street in central London. Continue reading “City’s new disputes hub launches home for independent arbitrators”

Victory for Mishcon and Blackstone heavyweight as Supreme Court rules Parliamentary suspension unlawful

Victory for Mishcon and Blackstone heavyweight as Supreme Court rules Parliamentary suspension unlawful

Mischon de Reya and Blackstone Chambers are among the legal reputations seeing a significant boost this morning after securing a historic victory in the Supreme Court challenge to the suspension of Parliament by Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Unveiling its verdict this morning (24 September), president of the Supreme Court Lady Hale said that the advice given to the Queen to suspend Parliament was ‘unlawful, void and of no effect’, leaving it to Commons’ speaker John Bercow to decide whether to recall MPs immediately. The much-awaited decision was handed down unanimously by 11 Supreme Court judges. Continue reading “Victory for Mishcon and Blackstone heavyweight as Supreme Court rules Parliamentary suspension unlawful”

Market Report: White-Collar Crime – Closing the net on corruption

Market Report: White-Collar Crime – Closing the net on corruption

With deferred prosecution agreements proving a success and the scale of investigations increasing, things have never been busier for corporate crime firms. Anna Cole-Bailey discusses

The consensus among white-collar crime partners is that financial misconduct cases are not going away any time soon. With many investigations historic, they leave deep footprints over time. Continue reading “Market Report: White-Collar Crime – Closing the net on corruption”

Market Report: Tax Litigation – Out of the shadows

Market Report: Tax Litigation – Out of the shadows

Political pressure to crack down on evasion and Bribery Act-style powers are pushing tax disputes onto boardroom agendas, writes Dominic Carman

Tax investigations and disputes historically rarely made the headlines, except for the occasional world-class footballer or rows over globe-trotting firms slashing their tax bills. Continue reading “Market Report: Tax Litigation – Out of the shadows”

Market Report: Competition Litigation – Healthy competition

Market Report: Competition Litigation – Healthy competition

With the trickle of follow-on damages claims after high-profile competition investigations threatening to become a flood, Dominic Carman examines how firms are preparing their clients for battle

‘We have talked about competition litigation emerging as a work stream in civil litigation for a long period of time, but we have seen a real boom in activity over the last few years,’ says Francesca Richmond, partner at Baker McKenzie. ‘Defendants to regulatory investigations should now expect civil claims to be filed against them and account for that in their overall strategy.’ Continue reading “Market Report: Competition Litigation – Healthy competition”

Market Report: Employment – The toughest gig in town

Market Report: Employment – The toughest gig in town

As #MeToo continues to shine an uncomfortable light on many industries, Anna Cole-Bailey looks at how its influence on employment litigation in firms is likely to come into full swing in 2019

For Sarah Henchoz, a partner in Allen and Overy’s employment team who has hailed 2019 ‘the year of culture’ for big employers, her department has seen a spike in advisory work following the emergence of the #MeToo scandal in late 2017: ‘The first week back in January 2018 we received six separate new matters all relating to sexual harassment or misconduct,’ she says. Continue reading “Market Report: Employment – The toughest gig in town”