Last updateMon, 09 Dec 2019 2pm

Why should we strive for an Inclusive Legal Services Sector?

By Amanda Hamilton, NALP

My parents were both lawyers. So many changes have affected the legal services sector over the last 30 years, that if they were alive, they wouldn’t recognise any of it!

The discussions may have been going on for decades regarding the possibility of merging the two major legal professionals, Barristers and Solicitors, into one, but as we all know by now, this will never happen.

Outcome measures: assessing the impact of rehabilitation

Lawyers must adopt a pro-active approach in their on-going support of seriously injured clients, taking ownership of assessing the impact of rehabilitation.

Andy Shaw (pictured), of Higgs & Sons, says: “By taking this action approach, the lawyer will ensure that everyone engaged in the client’s rehabilitation can show that the support and treatment provided has best met the client’s needs to maximise the rehabilitation outcomes.”

Patient reported outcome measures, or PROMS, are an essential requirement in all areas of healthcare in determining the impact of treatment. These measures are routinely used in treating those with long-term neurological conditions, such as stroke and traumatic brain injury.

Lawyers council caution in discount rate reforms

The Law Society has responded to the new discount rate policy, announced by the Ministry of Justice on 7 September.

The MoJ claims the reforms will make sure personal injury victims get the right compensation and could also see significant savings for the NHS – as well as for motorists through lower car insurance premiums.

Changes mean the rate would be set by reference to ‘low risk’ rather than ‘very low risk’ investments as at present, better reflecting evidence of the actual investment habits of claimants, the MoJ says.

The rate will also be reviewed at least every three years – and the expertise available to the Lord Chancellor in carrying out the reviews will be extended by the creation of a role for an independent expert panel in the process.

Civil Partnerships v Marriage – What’s the Difference?

Following this morning’s announcement at The Supreme Court that heterosexual couples can enter into a civil partnership, Shona Young, Family Law Solicitor at Gilson Gray (pictured), explains why people may choose this instead of marriage.

The Supreme Court this morning has ruled that heterosexual couples can enter into a civil partnership, finding that the Civil Partnership Act 2004 is incompatible with the European Convention on Human Rights.

With married couples being seen by many in the gay rights lobby to enjoy a higher status than those in a civil partnership, many are asking: Why would a couple who can be legally married want to instead enter into a civil partnership?

New 'DIY' divorce petition may lead to more adultery accusations – and a slower divorce process

A new government form that looks to 'name and shame' adulterers is set to make the process of divorce even more complicated.

That’s according to family solicitor Sally Powell (pictured), Partner at law firm Tees, who says the latest changes to the application form were meant to streamline the process, but may well have the opposite effect.

“The government has called it a user-friendly form, as it appears simple for couples to do their own “quickie online divorce”. However, we are concerned that the changes could slow down the divorce process. There’s real potential for the form to steer people towards a course of action they didn’t intend – or even expect – by naming a third party in the petition. This could slow down their divorce, and make the process even more emotionally fraught.