Band 1 again in Chambers & Partners…

2nd November 2017

Band 1 again in Chambers & Partners and spotlight table for Charles Feeny in Clin Neg and Industrial Disease. ‘Widely recognised as leading clin neg specialist. Popular choice for firms looking to fight intricate cases on causation and quantum’.  ‘Highly esteemed by peers for his exceptional expertise in Industrial Disease matters, approachable, authoritative and excellent’.

Ana Samuel to present at NAMDET

Ana Samuel is delighted to be speaking on Medical Device Incidents at the NAMDET conference in Birmingham today. Looks to be an eventful day.

http://namdet.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Final-2017-CONFERENCE-PROGRAMME.pdf

Charles Feeny has been invited to join the CEDR Mediator Panel

We are delighted to announce that Charles Feeny has been invited to join the CEDR Mediator Panel and becomes their only accredited Mediator in Liverpool.

View Charles’ profile page here.

The next CEDR event deals with ‘Mediation in Public Healthcare’ which is due to take place on 26th September. Full details can be found here.

Spotlight on Claire Labio – My Planet Liverpool

Thanks to My Planet Liverpool for featuring Complete Counsel in the recent issue of their magazine. Take a look at the images below or visit their website to view the digital version.

Mediation: the cost effective answer for Employers following the Supreme Court’s ruling

Mediation is already quicker and cheaper than more traditional legal practices, and it could be about to become a far more practical solution for businesses across the UK.

A Supreme Court ruling that the imposition of fees for those bringing employment tribunal claims is unlawful is set to have an enormous impact on the number of claims, which could put some companies in severe financial danger.

The imposition of the fees led to a 79% reduction in claims over the last three years, but the ruling will no doubt result in an exponential rise in claims, which will result in increased costs and disruption for businesses.

The potential costs include meeting the claim and potentially, through the imposition of a revised fee regime, a requirement to pay a fee to defend a claim.

Not only does the decision have implications for future claims but there is a real potential for those who did not pursue previous claims, due to the level of fees involved. They will now seek to bring a claim out of time and try to argue that either it was not reasonably practicable to bring a claim within the requisite time period due to the cost of fees involved and/or that it would be just and equitable to extend the period of time for bringing a claim.

Offering mediation as an alternative will not only cut the time taken to achieve a result, but it will also be significantly more cost-effective for employers. Not only is it cheaper in the long term but less time is also lost preparing for and undertaking the full legal process, as mediation can be organised and settled within a week.

While it has a success rate of between 80-90%, mediation also means the matter is kept confidential between parties and the outside world, meaning the effects on the business will be kept to the minimum.

Complete Mediation has a diverse team of experienced mediators, a number with Employment Law backgrounds who can assist you in resolving your dispute.

Mediation fees start from just £200 plus VAT, so for more details, please contact support@completemediation.co.uk or call us on 0333 241 2331 to see how we can help you.

All change – new discount rate

On the 27th February 2017 the MOJ announced that the discount rate, previously set at 2.5%, would drop down to -0.75% with effect from the 20th March 2017.

Whilst a drop had been expected no one could have predicted such a massive decrease. 
The resultant effect will be a significant increase in respect of future losses in personal injury claims.

Whilst the government has imposed the change it has failed to provide amended Ogden tables to accompany the rate change. However, PI calculator has provided amended calculations to assist in the short term.

What does this change mean?

  • Claimants are likely to withdrawn part 36 offers.
  • Defendants are likely to try to accept part 36 offers before they are withdrawn.
  • JSM’s are likely to be postponed as Claimant’s seek to re-calculate and Defendant’s await the possibility of the discount rate being re-visited following potential judicial review.
  • There are likely to be arguments over the applicability of part 36 offers and whether they afford cost protection in the future.
  • Schedules and Counter-schedules will need to be re-drafted.
  • There may be arguments over the calculation of a -0.75 discount rate given that it is not as straight forward as averaging the rates for 0-.5% and -1%.
  • PPO’s are arguably redundant, as it would make little sense for a Claimant to choose a periodical payment when they could have a lump sum calculated on a negative discount rate.
  • Costs are likely to increase given that an increase in damages will make higher cost bills proportionate.
  • Insurance policies are likely to increase in cost to cover the additional financial liability.
  • What becomes of Table 27?

Does this impact on all future losses?

– It is unclear at present whether it applies to Roberts v Johnstone calculations for future accommodation costs. If it were to apply then this would lead to a negative outcome, which can’t have been intended given that the basis for altering the discount rate was to make future loss figures fairer for Claimants.

Conclusion

The imposition of a negative discount rate absent guidance will lead to uncertainty, increased costs and satellite litigation.

Come to our Chronic Pain Seminar

Chronic pain is a controversial presentation in PI claims. Claimants often seek damages for what are said to be life-changing conditions, which are not always wholly explained by established pathology and which Defendants and insurers frequently dispute. Issues as to vulnerability and causation cause further complication.

Pro-Vide Law, in association with Complete Counsel, are presenting an interactive seminar on chronic pain at 2pm on Friday 5th May at The Doubletree Hilton Hotel, 6 Sir Thomas Street, Liverpool.

We have a great line up of Speakers to include Dr Andreas Goebel – Associate Professor at the Liverpool Walton Centre and Assistant Professor for Pain medicine at The University of Liverpool, Dr Eric Ghadiali – Clinical Neuropsychologist, Professor Gus Baker – Emeritus Professor and Clinical Neuropsychologist, and Barristers Charles Feeny and Tom Goodhead from Complete Counsel.

The seminar will explain the various pathologies which can be implicated in a chronic pain disorder by reference to a fictional case and discuss the criteria for diagnosing such a disorder. The alternative possibilities of a factitious disorder or malingering will be explored.

The seminar will include an interactive “hot tubbing session” where the experts will present conflicting views as to credibility, diagnosis and prognosis.

The audience will be given the opportunity to raise issues and questions with the experts. Spaces are limited for this event. Tickets are £35.00 per person.

Registration – 2:00pm
Seminar – 2:15 – 4:30pm

Seminar followed by drinks and a chance to discuss the issues.

To book a place, please email claire.labio@completecounsel.co.uk

Come to our joint CIOT/STEP seminar with tax advice from Michael Sherry

Come to our free joint seminar on Monday March 20th 2017.

Venue: Brabners Solicitors Horton House, Exchange Flags Liverpool L2 3YL

Registration: 4.30pm
Seminar: 4.45pm – 5.45pm

We invite you to stay following the seminar and join us for drinks. RSVP to claire.labio@completecounsel.co.uk

Topics covered will include case studies on:

  • Non-domicile changes
  • IT/CGT – conditions A and B
  • IHT – previously domiciled residents
    – 15 year rule
    – Excluded property trusts
    – “Foreign owned”
  • Implementation
  • Pre-domicile planning? Now and in the future
  • Trusts – “protected” trusts
    – Other changes

Complete Counsel Announces Two New Additions

Complete Counsel, which launched in 2015, is an innovative digital based model which enables Barristers to practice as sole practitioners or from existing Chambers, but with appropriate support from experienced experts on a contractual basis.

Claire Labio, Practice Director commented ‘We are approaching our second anniversary and experience has so far shown that if a Barrister does engage and follow the guidance given they will see real growth in terms of practice and cash flow.

‘I was recently asked if Barristers using the service from outside of Liverpool were just ‘Door Tenants’. Traditionally Chambers accepted Barristers on to their door to enhance the offering visually whilst not really having much to do with the every day development of that Barristers practice. We do not use the term ‘Door Tenant’ specifically for that reason. Our Barristers receive one to one personal development whether they are full time or not.’

The two new additions are Tom Goodhead and James Byrne, both practitioners at 9 Gough Square in London. Tom and James were looking for a northern base to complement their southern practices in a way which would help them but would not conflict in relation to their primary tenancy. ‘Tom and James are experienced PI, Clinical Negligence and Product Liability specialists. They recognised that we could offer them solid links and exposure in the North which would in turn increase their practices’.

Tax Surgery with tax advice from Michael Sherry

Date: 7th February, 2017
Venue: Ground Floor, The Plaza
Registration: 4.00pm
Surgery: 4.15pm – 5.15pm followed by a small drinks reception

RSVP to claire.labio@completecounsel.co.uk by 26th January 2017

Topics covered will include case studies on:

  • Liquidations where shareholder involved in same/similar business subsequently
  • Property SPVs with distinct shareholders – purchase by one – risks to CGT treatment to others
  • Farming and loss relief where there is a profit in year 6 which is eliminated by capital allowances
  • Loans to participators
  • Applying FRS 102 to loans from participators which will not be called upon
  • Accelerated payment notice in respect of PAYE – whether and when deductible for CT
  • Dividends paid to non-resident shareholders – ITTOIA 2005 ss. 399, and 811
  • Corporate client of LLP – Profits within Patent Box

This should be of particular interest to experienced and senior practitioners. The intention of this surgery is to stimulate debate and allow those present to discuss and ask questions about matters which concern them. There is no charge for this event, however to stimulate debate numbers are limited and early booking is essential.

If there are any specific issues that you would like Michael to discuss please email me up to 48 hours prior to the event for submission.