Archive for December, 2013

The truly honourable who turn down absurd British honours…


I am not a fan of the British Honours system.  I can see no reason at all to call someone ‘Sir Basil” or “Dame Edna”… let alone the absurdity of ‘Lord / lady’.

Fortunately, I don’t need to – and won’t.

Also time to get rid of titles for all judges – gives the impression that they are not independent?  Some think so – as is their right…still… in Britain.  Why do we need a ‘Lord’ Chief Justice?  Chief Justice has far more impact.

I can’t imagine that judges need a title to do a decent job.  Ipso facto, why bother with the title?

But I do have some sensible advice for those contemplating a career in the law…


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Words are not needed for what follows…

sinister (comparative more sinistersuperlative most sinister)

  1. Inauspicious, ominous, unlucky, illegitimate (as in ‘political barsteward’).
  2. Evil or seemingly evil; indicating lurking danger or harm.
    sinister influences
    the sinister atmosphere of the crypt

I have to say that Mr Osbore does seem a bit sinister in that photograph.  ‘Something of the night’ about him?

I recall Ann Widdecombe’s famous statement about another Tory wannabe… Michael Howard:  “There is something of the night about him”. The remark was considered to be extremely damaging to Howard.

I can only assume that this trait is a requirement for high office in the Tory party… or a talent for Gilbert & Sullivanesque comedy, in the case of our present ‘Lord Chancellor’, Chris Grayling, who I very much hope will raid the dressing up box again soon to reincarnate as an Archbishop.

Before I turn to other sinistral matters – a most interesting piece from Paul Gilbert..

Innovation – of course, it’s what we all do, isn’t it?

It won’t be long and once again our thoughts will turn to what will be new in the next twelve months; what innovation will we see, what new gadgets and ideas will come forward, who will make a break-through with something that will astonish us all?

In legal services we have had a decade or more of predictions about innovation (or Armageddon depending on your personal glass half full/empty barometer). We may be rather unsure about what the future will bring, but we are certain that we must all be innovative, we must all be ready for change and we must all be revolutionaries.

Yet, what has actually changed so far?

The rest of this article is well worth a read…

I find it difficult to leave the topic of Lord Chancellor Grayling – here he is again, divesting himself of his wisdom on the  European Court of Human Rights:

Grayling says European court of human rights has lost legitimacy

Justice secretary finalising plans to curtail Strasbourg court after 2015 to ‘ensure UK court judgments are final’
And here he is again singing a bit of Gilbert & Sullivan – which he does rather well – Iolanthe – Nightmare Song by The Lord Chancellor
That’s quite enough for now…back later when I have taken of supper…

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By popular demand – the return of our very successful Banking course – 2 years CPD

A Personal Christmas Statement to clients from Dr Erasmus Strangelove

I was pleased to see, while casually reviewing CCTV footage of our associates workfloor on Christmas Day, that good legal work was being done.  It was pleasing to note that the security provided by G5S was impeccable. Not one associate escaped during the 12 hour day.

I am able to report that profits accruing to The Partners this year exceeded expectation, despite the best endeavours of the present government which is doing all it can to dissuade people from going to law or, indeed, from going into the law.

The Partners had lunch on Christmas Eve, the cullinary details of which do not need to be revealed on grounds of decorum. We discussed, inter alia, the remarkable appointment of Chris ‘Kill a Burglar’ Grayling as Lord Chancellor.  We marvelled. One of our number marvelled too much and, sadly, had to be given a Heimlich maneuver (sic) to cure unstoppable laughter.  Unfortunately, the procedure failed.  We were, however, able to schedule the funeral immediately as he had no family and he will now rest in pieces rest in peace buried in our new roof garden. As he was not a god botherer there was no need for any religious element to the tasteful funeral we held.  It was a brief ceremony – 2.38 minutes of billable time. He would have been pleased that we were able to charge this as a disbursement to his favourite client as ‘perusal’.

We were able this year, at modest  cost to the client, to wish our clients a Happy Christmas and  a VERY prosperous New Year.  This fee item will show on your personal account as “Christmas Advice”.

If you would like any of your friends in need of legal services to be wished a Happy Christmas by any member of Muttley Dastardly LLP – please log into your personal MDLLP screen.   Christmas messages are very reasonably priced this year.  Your chosen message from us will be billed in the usual way.

I will write again in the New Year, quite possibly on New Year’s day, to see if we are able to assist you with legal issues or, indeed, suggest some.

Dr Erasmus Strangelove
Senior Partner

“Strength & Profits”




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I will, no doubt, return to commentary and analysis of matters legal at some point in the early new year – should I suddenly be seized of the mood to do so. Fortunately, there are others… elucidators…  who take on the burden of elucidation on matters legal.

 “Fox hunting is the unspeakable in pursuit of the inedible.” –Oscar Wilde


The last six months of 2013 was wiped out for me in terms of touring and sustained writing due to an unpleasant spinal injury – sustained while shaving when I tripped on a bathmat and fell backwards into the bath.  The doctor cheerfully told me that I was lucky.  It could have been far worse.  The dark side of my mind could not resist asking him if ‘worse’ meant ‘a bit of mortal coil shuffling’. The doctor was a fine man of medicine, but I don’t think he was used to ‘gallows humour’ from patients, so I left him to do the doctor bit.

It would seem that Barbasol recommend shaving while wearing ice skates.  I shall give it a go. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

And so to other matters… resisting the urge to comment on the development of our laws with some ease.

David Allen Green, taking time off from the Financial Times to write for Legal Cheek – considers the interpretation of the Something Must be Done Act 2014

“Let’s start with Section 1:

“The Crown shall have the power to do anything, and nothing a Minister of the Crown does will be ultra vires.”

That should shut up the High Court for a while with their judicial review decisions.

But adding a second section to the Act will make sure that Ministers will act in the interests of all of us. So for the avoidance of doubt, Section 2 provides:

“The power given by Section 1 of this Act shall include the banning of things by any Minister of the Crown.”

 The remaining provisions of the Act are considered in depth here

I am reassured by this statement from the Boys in Blue… ?

On the topic of  ‘elucidation’ it seems appropriate to dig up that old chestnut from F.E. Smith (Later Lord Birkenhead).

“Judge: I’ve listened to you for an hour and I’m none wiser.
Smith: None the wiser, perhaps, my lord but certainly better informed.”

And a couple more for you… why not?

“It would be possible to say without exaggeration that the miners’ leaders were the stupidest men in England if we had not frequent occasion to meet the owners.”

And a particular favourite… I suspect there may be a few judges who could be rewarded with such wonderful eloquence today…

“Judge: What do you suppose I am on the bench for?
Smith: It is not for me, Your Honour, to attempt to fathom the inscrutable workings of Providence.”

And on that note, I take your leave to refresh myself…back later…perhaps.

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Not a lot of law about to comment on and, if there is, it can wait until the new year.

Sitting at my desk looking at the back of a packet of Marlboro.  The picture on the back is a festive one of a dead body lying on a slab in a morgue –  a tasteful, atmospheric headshot. Still…on the bright side…smokers pay a lot in tax and some die younger, reducing the costs burden to our increasingly dystopian state?  A felicific calculus Bentham would be proud of. Our present Lord Chancellor may not be aware of the great legal writers of jurisprudence.  I am almost tempted to send him a copy of ‘Law Made Simple’ – although I would not wish to encourage him;  he might try to push such heresy through and where would we be then?

Mr Bentham’s remains in a case at The University of London

On a more festive note…. I see that The College of Law, now a university after a ‘Whovian’ transmogrification into a University  –  has managed to lose the contract to teach GDL and LPC students for Allen & Overy (See below also). Working on the reasonable principle that the University of Law would be unlikely to comment on this matter – I went to a reliable source – RollonFriday – to see if there was any ‘gen’ on why the University of Law lost the Allen & Overy contract.

Mr or Ms Anonymous User commented pithily: “Single-subject “university” that has been cutting and cutting on a knee-jerk basis now finds itself unable to compete. There’s no story here save for the years of business inadequacy not of it course but of its management.”

Another Mr or Ms Anonymous was able to shed further light on this matter with precision and astute observation…“Yeah: just the result of the previous management hacking through the staff, no business acumen any of them, therefore not surprising they cannot teach it.”

Well..there we are. Perhaps the University of Law needs assistance from my brother, Professor R.D. Charon?  I know he is free and I know he will be able to trot out the usual education ‘evidence based’ guff.  He also takes Amex.

Professor R.D. Charon was not available for comment – but his PR agent was able to respond to my email ” I am fairly confident that the vulture capitalists who now own the University of Law will do Britain proud.  Please settle the fee for this comment in the usual way by return cash.”

The University of Law has recorded a net profit of over £14m in its latest financial results, just a year after being purchased by private equity house Montagu Private Equity for £177m. Source: Legal Business

Curiously, apropos the loss by The University of Law (UoL)  of the Allen & Overy students to BPP which I noted above – “The UoL turned to longstanding adviser Allen & Overy (A&O) for legal advice during the sale, led by global corporate chair Richard Cranfield.”

You may like to read this incisive article from Professor Richard Moorhead in Legal Business.  A good read: Guest Post: Legal education review – why everyone is happy and no one is smiling

Given that it is still the festive season – this snippet from The Magistrates’ Blog amused me – on the ways of those who buy wine for investment. ‘Bottoms up’… seems, inappropriate, however.  I did enjoy a comment on this blogpost by Anonymous – who is, clearly, a very busy person, popping up on blogs all over the place – “I’ve never understood why we have concurrent sentences for consecutive crimes.”

Bitcher & Prickman cartoons are always worth a look – from US lawyer Charles Fincher Esq

2015 is coming soon and the current government will have to see what can be done with the electorate.  I am not a spin doctor, but given the increasing rise of the Kippers, David Cameron may like to reach out to some of them and the Storm Trooper Wing of his own party?

This may inspire the Tory Grandees?:  Springtime for Hitler for their version of The Producers ?

And…a curious story about Ian Duncan-Smith being less than open in recent years.  The BBC covered it in 2002: Newsnight reveals inaccuracies in Iain Duncan Smith’s CV

Back soon… and something rather more law based and sensible when the lawyers get back to work.

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I was in a cafe in Kennington over lunch talking with my real brother (as opposed to Professor R.D. Charon) and saw the poster above on the wall.  I rather liked it. I have had the pleasure of meeting people who do daft things after a good shot of coffee. Mind you the stuff they put up their noses after taking a sip of coffee  probably didn’t help the clarity of their thinking…. but they were certainly ‘animated’….veritable Duracell bunnies they were.

And now, to kick off proceedings…. The death of the blog : Long live the law blog

Silence is not always golden

I came across an interesting article on The In-House Lawyer from MacFarlanes LLP – Silence is not always golden:

In PGF II SA v OMFS Company 1 Ltd [2013], the Court of Appeal considered, for the first time, whether a failure by a party to respond to an invitation to mediate should be treated as an unreasonable refusal to mediate – previous cases having focused on situations where there had been an express refusal to do so.

The Court of Appeal held that silence in the face of an offer to mediate is of itself unreasonable – even if circumstances exist which would justify an express refusal to mediate.

I may have overdone the ‘Law’ content (above) for the festive season… so… onwards with little in the way of ‘The law’ getting in the way…

Beaubodor is a very talented artist and humourist who has a good record of ‘hitting the nail on the head’.  I always enjoy his pictures.  Visit the Beaubodor website 

One website where I can be certain of avoiding ‘the Law’ – but still about ‘Law’  – is Legal Cheek, a website I particularly enjoy. 

Here – the 10 most-read Legal Cheek Stories of 2013 : From Ward LJ “This case involves a number of – and here I must not fall into Dr Spooner’s error – warring bankers.”

Never in the field of human conflict has so little been done by so few for so many….?

It would appear that the Prime Minister may well have been mildly ‘over-refreshed’. Did he come up with the ‘bright idea’ of appointing Chris Grayling as Lord Chancellor after his evening out?

John Bolch over at Family Lore has an amusing Review of the Year…


I am a fan of Clare Rodway’s The Conversation bloghere she interviews Jo Warby

Jo Worby is one of those rare people in business who is more interested in talking about other people’s success. She is also rare in being a female managing partner. She has developed ambitious plans for her law firm, Maidstone-based Brachers, since taking on the role and a lot of them are focussed on engaging the people in her business…..

I am also a fan of Charles Pugsley Fincher and his art…

Carl Gardner is a ‘precision law blogger’ and a good friend and accomplice in our Without Prejudice podcasts – which will return soon. This recent blog post is well worth a read:  Alan Turing: a strain’d quality of irrational and arbitrary mercy

I must not overdo the ‘legal thinking’ or ‘thinking legal’ … back on the morrow with more.

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Dear Reader,

Christmas passed pleasantly in the company of good friends –  but then I had the misfortune to stumble across an article in The New Statesman about the prime minister’s attempt to control the internet:  Cameron’s internet filter goes far beyond porn – and that was always the plan. 


But…on the bright side…RollonFriday is doing in depth research into law firms and the attitudes of those who work at law firms.

This extract will give you a taste…

Allen & Overy has got very posh with a “jazzy new in-house shop” which sells everything from “delectable pick’n’mix and cakes to champagne“. And Tiffany jewellery. And flour, “for all those who have the time to bake their own bread.” However there’s disagreement as to the quality of colleague. One trainee says there are “very few arseholes” in the firm, but a senior associate disagrees: “speedy lifts, wall-to-wall tossers“.

Thankfully, there are many fine lawyers out there – many working for very modest remuneration compared to the commercial velociraptors in ‘The City’ – chacun à son goût.

a più tardi….

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Happy Christmas…

This Christmas many will listen to the Queen and her annual message.

I thought some years ago that it would be amusing if the Duke of Edinburgh had a go at the annual Christmas message… perhaps along these lines…?

It seems only appropriate, given the Duke’s ability to come out with astonishing statements, to quote my favourite of his observations on our friends in other lands…

When asked if he would like to visit the Soviet Union

“The bastards murdered half my family”

Have a good Christmas – however you spend it…

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It may be time for Mr Cameron to ‘consider his position’.


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I quote at length from a remarkable blog post from the Prison Reform Trust…

For the first time this Christmas, people in prison will not be able to receive parcels from their loved ones under petty and mean new rules introduced by the Justice Secretary Chris Grayling.

The new rules, which forbid prisoners from receiving any items in the post unless there are exceptional circumstances, were introduced in November as part of the government’s changes to the Incentives and Earned Privileges (IEP) scheme.

Under the rules, families are prevented from sending in basic items of stationery such as cards, paper or pens to help people in prison keep in touch with their friends and families and wish them a happy Christmas. They are also prevented from sending books and magazines or additional warm clothes and underwear to the prison. Instead people in prison are now forced to pay for these items out of their meagre prison wages to private companies who make a profit from selling goods to prisoners.

Read the rest of the article…

This is grotesque government – a policy introduced by a politician with no experience of the law or the ‘Justice’ system.

And they say that Britain is a 1st World Nation…with a reputation for ‘humanity’.

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Postcard from The Staterooms

Dear Reader

As Chris Grayling raids the dressing up box, it warms the heart to see that he has finally been apprehended…

If I was inclined to rudeness – which I am not, I might be tempted to suggest that Mr Grayling would serve his country better by returning to the fold of back bench psychopaths on the Tory benches.  But as I am not rude, I won’t.  Tuberville v Savage [1669] EWHC KB J25

Having managed to fall backwards into a bath, slipping on a bathmat while shaving some months back – cracking my spine, I take an interest in The Darwin Awards.

The winner this year…

Yes, it’s that magical time of year again when the Darwin Awards are bestowed, honoring the least evolved among us.
Here Is The Glorious Winner:
1. When his .38 caliber revolver failed to fire at his intended victim during a hold-up in Long Beach, California would-be robber James Elliot did something that can only inspire wonder. He peered down the barrel and tried the trigger again. This time it worked.
I shall return later in the day, possibly, with another Postcard.  I leave you with good seasonal  news from RollonFriday “Allen & Overy has replaced the University of Law as its LPC and GDL provider with BPP University.”

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I don’t really need to add anything – save that the Criminal Barristers are right….

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A bit of the ‘Rive Gauche’ for you…..

The resemblance is, indeed, remarkable. The stuff of nightmares?

The Spectator has the story: Exclusive: David Cameron IS related to Catherine the Great

But to inject a bit of the festive season – please do have a look at Cassons for Counsel –  excellent Christmas video.

Perhaps not quite so festive – but certainly very useful from Cassons – East Lancs tax expert’s social media warning

It will take a fair amount of ‘bloviating’ from Alex Salmond and his plans for Independence and ‘Independent Scotland’ starting life as a part of the EU  to get around this ruling from the EU:

Herman Van Rompuy deals EU blow to Alex Salmond’s independence plans

And so we move on to the events in Chancery Lane at The Law Society : Law Society leadership in chaos as solicitors pass no-confidence vote

And from there to news: 

Eddie Izzard on going into politics: ‘Why shouldn’t I be mayor of London?’

I am a fan, as many are, of Eddie Izzard and have had the pleasure of seeing him perform live several times.  I think it would be rather fun to have Mr Izzard as London Mayor…  Ou est Le Boris?  Le Boris est dans l’arbre ? 

The Guardian has the story


Simon Myerson QC writes: The Risk We Run

“On 6th January the Criminal Bar is going on strike. Or, more accurately, they aren’t going to turn up for work in the morning. On 6th January I start a civil trial. I will be working on that day because the Court has listed the matter and my client is paying me to be there. I make this declaration because I want to talk about what is going to happen. I should also be spending this evening doing the Opening for that trial and I very much fear that I will pay for this post with a 3am finish some time soon. Still, it’s important.

As you would expect the Bar Standards Board has published guidance about the 6th January. It says that not attending Court is a disciplinary offence.”

Read the full post here

No rational basis for denying all prisoners the vote, concludes joint Parliamentary Committee : UK Human Rights blog

But it is the festive season – so time for a bit more of the bizarre…

Burglar trapped hanging over toilet says “please help. call the police”

The Police were called.  Apparently, this burglar isn’t very good at crime.

I am often surprised by Mr Grant Shapps MP.  Apart from his double identity life of the past – I find it remarkable (a) That he is Chairman of The Tory Party and (b) That his constituents elected him.  But, be that as it may.

His latest antics are covered in this remarkable story from The Guardian: “Grant Shapps tried to prevent housing plan for airfield where he keeps plane. Local council wants to build 700 homes on Panshanger airfield where Shapps keeps his £100,000 Piper Saratoga aircraft”




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More Transparency Expected from Personal Injury Claims Management Companies

According to the Citizen’s Advice Bureau, it is a “civil and legal right” to make an accident claim, yet 69 percent of people do not do this [1]. There are many reasons for this, just some of which include not having the right knowledge, or not having the funds available to submit and support a claim. Yet it is possible that these problems can be rectified by doing some research online and looking into suitable options; perhaps the industry still has some work to do in order to make information clearer.

This is something that the Ministry of Justice is also keen to do; they are currently preparing to follow up their consultation on introducing more stringent rules for claims management companies with a third inquiry into fines early next year. The idea is that they can clamp down on poor industry practices to make decisions much easier and safer for consumers.

Personal injury claims management companies (CMCs) are already down 38 percent (as of the end of September) compared to the same period in 2012, following the MoJ’s Conduct Rules which were introduced in July. The new consultation on proposed fines for CMCs accused of poor practices will go hand-in-hand with the consultation to tighten the MoJ’s Conduct Rules.

The changes wanted by the MoJ in this area include:

●     Ensuring investigations are carried out to establish the merits of a claim,

●     Ensuring data received from introducers has been legally obtained / is compliant with rules,

●     Not making claims recklessly, falsely or in any way intended to mislead.

These proposed amendments are expected to be introduced after the new year, and should help to promote transparency when it comes to claims management companies. It is not expected to increase the burden on CMCs who are already compliant with the regulations.

The MoJ released a report which makes for interesting reading for consumers and industry professionals alike. It speaks of the 38 percent personal injury claims management company shrinkage, as well as the implementation of the Conduct Rules. They say: “Most of the CMCs that have exited the market were small businesses, which had either ceased trading altogether or were focusing on the credit hire/bent metal aspects of accident management.” [2]

“This is almost wholly as a result of the civil justice and related reforms to this sector introduced in April 2013. We anticipate that the personal injury claims market will continue to contract in 2013 and beyond as CMCs who are unable to adapt their business model to comply with the referral fee ban, exit the market.”

The report also explained that many personal injury focussed CMCs had been successful in adapting to the referral fee ban through the shift in business practices. This includes the amendment of models in order to make them compliant with the ban; popular solutions involve marketing schemes and service agreements. At the end of September 2013, there were 1485 authorised firms out of a total of 2350.

CMCs will need to closely monitor changes to regulations to ensure they are providing consumers with the correct information, but it will lead to much more transparency that could even lead to more people following their civil and legal right to make a claim.



[1] First Personal Injury, www.firstpersonalinjury.co.uk

[2] Post Online, http://www.postonline.co.uk/post/news/2308777/personal-injury-cmcs-down-by-38-as-moj-prepares-fines-consultation

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How to deal with car accidents involving families
By Croftons Injury Claims

Car accidents involving relatives are stressful, especially if it turns out they were to blame for the incident. A solicitor can explain how to deal with this.

Being involved in a car accident is stressful enough at the best of times, but it becomes even more so when family members are involved.

While your immediate concern will obviously be caring for anyone who has been injured in the collision, it is also important to consider your legal reaction to any incident. As we will see, this largely depends on the circumstances surrounding the accident.

Scenario A: Your family car is hit by another vehicle

Manchester-based Croftons Solicitors are experienced in dealing with challenging car accident claims traffic accident claims centre around a crash involving two parties, with the claimant seeking to prove that the blame for the incident lies with the other driver.

However, if your family is in the car with you and they also suffer injuries, it is important that you all know how to most effectively pursue compensation from the negligent driver

Any adult family member would have the same rights as you. That is, they have up to three years to make a claim before they become ineligible for compensation.

If a child is hurt in the accident, you may make a claim on their behalf at the same time as pursuing compensation for yourself. If you do not, they will have the option to do so for three years from the date of their 18th birthday.

Victims of accidents involving an uninsured driver or ‘hit and run’ incidents may be concerned that they will not receive any compensation if there is no one to claim against. The Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) ensures this does not happen, but it is likely that your case will take longer to reach a conclusion if you have to go down this route.

Scenario B: A family member is responsible for the collision

A slightly less conventional car accident claim may occur if you are involved in an accident that was the fault of a family member.

This clearly puts the claimant in a rather awkward position. On the one hand, they are injured and need to be compensated for all the usual reasons such as medical costs and loss of earnings. On the other, the prospect of claiming against a family member is evidently more than a little awkward.

In this situation, many people are understandably nervous about causing tension within their family if they go ahead with a claim, and may be concerned that it will be seen as ‘blaming’ their relative or getting them into trouble. They might also be under the impression that any compensation they are awarded will come out of their relative’s pocket.

In fact, compensation in these cases will come from the at-fault driver’s insurer or the MIB, not from the driver directly. If explained in this way, it could reassure the claimant that they are not entering into direct opposition against a family member, which in turn will hopefully prevent a row from developing.

Incentive to act quickly

In both scenarios, the benefits of addressing the situation as soon as possible are clear. Quite apart from the fact that you will receive compensation quicker and be able to return to normality, the legal three-year time limit means failure to act promptly could see you miss out on compensation altogether.

Additionally, if we consider Scenario B, leaving the situation to fester could allow a family dispute to develop unnecessarily, as relatives enter into an argument without being in possession of all the facts.

It really is in your best interests to secure the help of an experienced road traffic accident solicitor as soon as possible, so don’t leave it too late to get the legal guidance you need.

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Hat Tip to @PCAK_Law

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Charon After Dark (1)

There is a danger, now that I can return to blogging, that I may be over tempted to write something serious.  I shall resist the temptation for the present.



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Postcard from The Bunker (2)….

After several months of not being able to blog because of a spine injury, I have returned to the sport of having a look at the human condition through a not always serious lens.

First up… the vexed question as to how to maximise idiocy and folly on twitter… 

How to tweet without ending up in prison

An ill-judged tweet can land you in a whole lot of legal bother, as Peaches Geldof and Sally Bercow know only too well. So the attorney general’s new guidelines are essential reading

I have managed to do 115,950 tweets.  It is unlikely that I have advanced the cause of knowledge by doing this many tweets – but it has kept me off the streets causing alarm to the populace with my recent ‘dress sense’ (I wear red trousers occasionally these days)….

For those of you who have a hidden desire to wear red trousers…. I commend http://lookatmyfuckingredtrousers.blogspot.co.uk/ to you

On a more serious note – I am delighted that a judge has had an opportunity to deal with this issue:

Muslim vigilantes jailed for ‘sharia law’ attacks in London

“Passing sentence on Friday, Judge Rebecca Poulet QC told them that while Islam was a peaceful religion, their conduct was “unfortunately anything but”.

“One of the many good things about living in Great Britain is the tolerance and respect members of the public generally show to one another’s religious beliefs, his dress or his chosen way of life.”

“When, on occasions, a person shows their intolerance of another individual, whether by aggression or violence and in such a way as to cause real fear to the individual, then the law can be invoked to protect that individual.”

And now to a most interesting post from thelegalbratblawg : Time to re-set the legal profession?

As one GC recently put it to me, “the re-set button has been pressed on the legal profession”. Whilst the button has certainly been pressed, the machine has not yet rebooted….

And on the subject of intolerance..

Oxbridge speaks out against Oldfield deportation proceedings


As staff, students, and alumni of Cambridge and Oxford Universities, we are calling on the Home Secretary to stop deportation proceedings against Trenton Oldfield for disrupting the Oxford-Cambridge Boat Race in April 2012.

We neither believe that this action constituted an infraction serious enough to warrant such a heavy penalty, nor accept that it establishes that Mr Oldfield is ‘undesirable, has unacceptable associations and could be considered a threat to national security’.

The Boat Race is a game; its disruption should not result in any individual’s deportation. Certainly its disruption should not be cause to separate an individual from his family, which includes a recently-born child.


Lucy Reed at her Pink Tape blog writes with precision and clarity about the Essex C-Section case in the following blog posts.




Lucy Reed practices from St John’s Chambers

It is always interesting to get some views on the hot law firms.  RollonFriday has the gen on this…

Firm of the Year: Linklaters “brutal”, Irwin Mitchell “confiscates mobiles”

RollonFriday story

Human rights for lawyers at these firms….  anyone?

I shall be back later…possibly.  Need to eat a toasted chicken sandwich with hot Mango chutney from Patak’s (Three chillies mark on the label) …. haven’t had one since breakfast.


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Postcard from The Bunker…. (1)

Finally recovering from a daft injury sustained when I tripped on a bathmat while shaving and fell backwards into the bath, cracking my spine.,  I can, at last, type with some accuracy and no pain.  Whether this advance will do anything to the cause of informing and commenting on the laws of our country is not for me to consider.

Nor is it for me or anyone else to consider calling for the abolition of The Monarchy – or even thinking about it?  For the avoidance of doubt, Mr Grayling, I am not and  never have been a member of the communist party, nor have I ever had the temerity to think in private or in public about the abolition of The Monarchy  etc etc. It is possible that my brain may have toyed with such thoughts when I was asleep – but I can hardly be responsible –  or have any of that old mens rea schtik –  while I am asleep.

The Ministry of Justice appears to be right up to the mark with ‘efficiency undreamed of in a modern state’  by managing to get ‘confused’ as to what laws in relation to the above are or are not still in force.

The Guardian makes the point: “A 165-year-old law that threatens anyone calling for the abolition of the monarchy with life imprisonment is technically still in force – after the Ministry of Justice admitted wrongly announcing that it had been repealed.”

It would appear that the Lord Chancellor has some competition when it comes to giving advice on the law: Helston pub affray conviction ‘unsafe’ as court bailiff slammed

Still…I suppose it must be difficult for the Lord Chancellor – not being a lawyer himself – to keep a grip on all this ‘law stuff’.

But the good news…demonstrating beyond doubt that the Lord Chancellor is concerned with law reform: “Among 327 offences that have recently been purged from the statute book was that of “being an incorrigible rogue”, under the Vagrancy Act 1824.”

But, be that as it may.  On to other matters….

First up is a question which has been on my mind, unanswered,  for many years – now solved by this helpful article: What does the Queen’s ‘warden of the swans’ actually do? (Phone hacking has had some benefits.)

I enjoyed this blog post: 

A simply appalling scheme

 Lloyds Banking Group has been fined £28m by the Financial Conduct Authority for simply awful management of staff.

To ensure that Britain continues to lead the way when it comes to matters of criminal Law, Legal Futures notesEntrepreneur-backed Defence Hub promises to “revolutionise” criminal defence market

I shall sleep easy in my bed this night knowing that all is well in matters of criminal defence and ‘hubs’.

And what about this – just to make us feel ‘Christmassy’? 

The Lawmakers riding roughshod over democracy .  It would appear Lord Sumption is right: legal activism devalues the demos.

But hey… while I am on what I am pleased to call ‘a roll’  – what about this from Legal Cheek?Frontman of company seeking to ‘revolutionise’ criminal law makes grammatically incorrect bestiality slur against bemused barrister

Back later.  I have to replenish supplies from the high street.

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