‘We can minimise the gap between business advisers and legal counsel’: EY admits Singapore boutique into network

‘We can minimise the gap between business advisers and legal counsel’: EY admits Singapore boutique into network

As Big Four accountancy giant EY continues to grow its legal services offering, it has today (2 October) announced it has brought Singaporean boutique firm PK Wong & Associates into its global network as an independent member.

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‘The overall benefits are potentially enormous’: Bucks County Council granted ABS licence with emergency services group

‘The overall benefits are potentially enormous’: Bucks County Council granted ABS licence with emergency services group

In a move that has been welcomed by the Legal Services Board, the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has granted an alternative business structure (ABS) licence to local authorities for the first time, as Buckinghamshire County Council enters into a joint venture with Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes Fire Authority.

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Comment: paradigm shift or just the mother of recessions? 2014 should answer the profession’s big question

Comment: paradigm shift or just the mother of recessions? 2014 should answer the profession’s big question

It’s been obvious that something fundamental happened to the world economy during 2008, ushering in the worst relative trading conditions since the 1930s. It is, likewise, demonstrable that this shift has had a material impact on the legal profession in terms of reduced growth prospects, changing corporate buying habits and pressure on the conventional model of law.

The point that has yet to be resolved – and which has huge significance to the western legal industry – is whether that change represents a permanent structural shift underwritten by technology and the rise of non-law firm providers, or merely a severe cyclical depression from which the profession will in time recover. Continue reading “Comment: paradigm shift or just the mother of recessions? 2014 should answer the profession’s big question”

Legal innovation – Connect2Law’s Jabbari to join Parabis to extend ABS portfolio and set up regional network

Legal innovation – Connect2Law’s Jabbari to join Parabis to extend ABS portfolio and set up regional network

Just weeks after resigning from Manchester-based consumer services and personal injury (PI) firm Pannone following its £33m acquisition by ASX-listed Slater & Gordon, the firm’s former executive board member and chief executive of Connect2Law David Jabbari has joined Parabis as a partner.

At Parabis, which last month partnered with Direct Line Group as the insurance giant obtained authorisation from the Solicitors Regulation Authority to become an Alternative Business Structure, Jabbari (pictured) will establish a Connect2Law-style branded network of leading regional law firms in the UK. Continue reading “Legal innovation – Connect2Law’s Jabbari to join Parabis to extend ABS portfolio and set up regional network”

Team work in the public sector as Bevan Brittan joins forces with Harrow and Barnet councils

Team work in the public sector as Bevan Brittan joins forces with Harrow and Barnet councils

The dividing line between private practice and public legal services providers is blurring again with Harrow and Barnet councils unveiling a new partnership with Bevan Brittan as the two local authorities become the first to apply for an alternative business structure (ABS) licence.

Harrow and Barnet councils, which came together in September last year to create HB Public Law (HBPL) and already provide services a small number of other local authorities, will work in a joint venture with Bevan Brittan to offer combined legal services to both existing and new public services clients, drawing on complementary resources from both sides.

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How to improve a law firm in 17 easy steps – a blue print for innovation

How to improve a law firm in 17 easy steps – a blue print for innovation

While pundits are queuing up to pronounce the death of the industry’s model, Legal Business canvassed senior figures to devise some practical ideas to make a law firm work better.

You don’t have to look far in the legal profession to find causes for gloom. Battered by a sustained malaise in Western economies, more assertive clients and the threat of legal service liberalisation in the UK, a growing band of observers, general counsel and industry figures have argued that the traditional model of commercial law is fundamentally broken.
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We’ve implemented the Legal Services Act – how about another review of legal regulation?

We’ve implemented the Legal Services Act – how about another review of legal regulation?

One man’s slashing red tape is another’s endless tinkering. Either way, the much-meddled field of legal regulation may face more intervention with news this week that the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) is to conduct a wholesale review of the profession’s regulatory landscape, little more than a year after the Legal Services Act (LSA) came into full force. Continue reading “We’ve implemented the Legal Services Act – how about another review of legal regulation?”

Guest post: Quality in law – endlessly invoked yet never defined

Here’s a question that’s been bothering me of late – what, exactly, is a quality legal service? You’ll have noticed that this phrase has become so common that it no longer requires an adjective (unless it’s poor quality). Many seem to think that if you say often enough that you provide one, it must be true.

It has come to the fore with the debate over criminal legal aid. First there is the Quality Assurance Scheme for Advocates (QASA). This elides ‘quality’ with competence. ‘The aim of QASA,’ says the application to the Legal Services Board for approval of the scheme, ‘is to assess and assure the competence of all advocates conducting criminal advocacy in courts in England and Wales.’

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