Morning Briefing: Class-action lawyers may be paid differently

by Steve Randall30 Nov 2015
Class-action lawyers may be paid differently
A case in California’s highest court could mean the end to lawyers receiving a percentage of the pay-outs they achieve for their clients. Nationally in the US the average cut for the lawyer is 25 per cent of the settlement but the case being heard in the coming months by the Supreme Court is calling for lawyers to be paid only for the hours they have worked on each case.

Boost to HFW construction team in Perth
Construction litigator David Ulbrick has joined the Perth office of Holman Fenwick Willan as special counsel. His appointment, effective Monday Nov, 30. continues the firm’s expansion of its construction and projects practice in Australia. Ulbrick has qualifications in civil engineering and lectures at the University of Melbourne as well as being widely published and the recipient of many industry awards.
UK regulator proposes lighter touch on regulation
The body which regulates UK solicitors has announced that it will be adopting a new regulatory model which will be less prescriptive. The Solicitors Regulation Authority says that its future is likely to focus on a set of “principles solicitors should follow” and to allow law firms to have greater freedom in how they operate. For individuals it could also mean removing restrictions on where lawyers can work to provide legal services more widely.
The proposals have a strong consumer focus with the SRA promising to create “more choice and access” to legal services for the public. Paul Philip, the SRA’s CEO, said: "We are looking to the future and sharing our plans to review our regulatory model and our Handbook. At the heart of this is the goal of protecting the public and encouraging a vibrant, competitive legal market.” He said that the new approach “frees up solicitors and firms, boosting competition while ensuring a focus on the greatest risks to consumers and helping people to use legal services effectively."
Prominent human rights lawyer gunned down
A human rights lawyer was calling for an end to violence between Kurdish rebels and Turkish forces minutes before he was gunned down. Tahir Elsi was shot dead in the street in Diyarbakir in southeast Turkey on Saturday while he and other lawyers were making a statement to reporters. He was the head of the Diyarbakir Bar Association and was facing a 7 year prison sentence for terrorist propaganda after saying on TV that the Kurdistan Workers Party is not a terrorist organisation.