Morning Briefing: Survey shows consumers expect legal advice for free

by John Maguire17 Apr 2015
Survey shows consumers expect legal advice for free
Law firms are increasingly finding that consumers want their advice free of charge. A survey by The Law Society in England found that price is now seen as more important to consumers than reputation or even experience. The poll of more than 2000 adults found that 75 per cent cited price as a factor in choosing a lawyer; when the same survey was conducted two years ago price was only a major issue for 6 per cent. Reputation and experience was a factor for 74 per cent of respondents. More than half (57 per cent) now expect free advice from their lawyers. 
BLP adds strength to international board
International law firm Berwin Leighton Paisner has announced the appointments of two partners to its international board. Roland Fabian, managing partner of BLP Germany; and Russell Clifford, practice group head of the firm’s global asset finance group join the board as the firm looks to grow its international footprint. 
Google’s lawyers fight EU competition battle
Law firm Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton is facing a tough battle in the European Union over claims of anti-competitive practices. The European Commission claims that Google is abusing its position as a search engine by promoting its own services prominently. The legal team has been given 10 weeks to respond to claims. If the allegations against Google, which has 90 per cent of the search market throughout most EU countries, it could face multi-billion dollar fines or even the break-up of its business in the region. 
Disney blockbuster in copyright claim
The blockbuster Disney movie ‘Frozen’ is the latest Hollywood movie to be caught up in a copyright infringement dispute. An author from Kuwait alleges that the movie’s storyline was based on her own story ‘The Snow Princess’ and has filed a lawsuit in a US court. Muneefa Abdullah alleges that the story, characters, mood, pace and themes of the movie are too similar to her own story to be coincidence. She is seeking unspecified damages. Disney is expected to contest the case.