As a consequence of the Financial Services Act 2012, on 1 April 2013 the Financial Services Authority ceased to exist and its functions were replaced by two new authorities.
The Prudential Regulation Authority is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Bank of England. It is responsible for the prudential regulation and supervision of banks, building societies, credit unions, insurers and major investment firms. Continue reading
For a brief period it seemed as if the much discussed Defamation Bill was in line to be cast into the legislative scrapheap of history as it emerged the Bill had become a party political battleground about how to best implement the Leveson Report’s recommendations on press regulation.
The legislative fault line concerned the new clause 2 of the “Putnam amendments”, named after the Labour Peer Lord Putnam, who along with Baroness Boothroyd, Lord Mackay and Baroness Scotland had tabled the amendments. Clause 2 proposed to create a statute based press regulator which, in principle, echoed the recommendations of the Leveson Report. The Conservative party, while agreeing with the need for a new and beefed up press regulator, had opposed any statutory underpinning for such a body. The result was a standoff which saw David Cameron indicating that unless there was cross-party agreement the amendment would be dropped, and the Bill could be scrapped altogether. Continue reading
A radical overhaul of litigation funding comes into force on 1 April 2013, by virtue of provisions in the Legal Aid Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO). The legislation gives effect to many of the proposals of Lord Justice Jackson in his report of January 2010, the purpose of which was to review the costs of civil litigation. Of particular significance to “no win no fee” funding is the fact that, where the reforms apply, it is no longer possible to recover from a losing opponent a success fee or After The Event [ATE] insurance premium Continue reading
According to news reports, since 2011 up to 60 people have been arrested as part of the Metropolitan Police’s Operation Elveden. The Metropolitan Police are investigating alleged corrupt payments by journalists to public officials, including police officers and senior civil servants, in exchange for information between 2004 and 2011 that was then published in news articles.
Operation Elveden is running alongside Operation Weeting, the Metropolitan Police’s investigation into phone hacking, and Operation Tuleta, which is an investigation into computer hacking. Continue reading
Since the uprisings known as the “Arab Spring” gained momentum in 2011, arbitration lawyers and risk analysts have asked how these events will affect foreign investment in the Middle East and North Africa (“MENA”) region.
Many MENA states encourage foreign investment into their economies. Investors in the MENA region typically invest in tourism, energy, construction, electricity, shipping and telecommunications sectors. Continue reading
The Financial Services Authority today released its findings following the pilot review of the sale of interest rate hedging products. The pilot reviewed 173 sales to “non-sophisticated customers” of Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds and RBS. Each bank has appointed an independent reviewer who interviewed customers in what was promised to be a “customer-centric” process. Continue reading
The Ministry of Justice announces deferment of civil costs reforms until appropriate ‘costs protection’ is introduced
On 13 December 2012 Justice Minister Helen Grant announced that the planned abolition of the recoverability of the current form of success fees and after the event (ATE) insurance in respect of defamation and privacy cases, which was due to be implemented from 1 April 2013, will not come into force until some form of ‘costs protection’ has been introduced for such proceedings. The announcement followed the recommendation made by Lord Justice Leveson that costs protection should be extended to defamation and privacy claims. The Government has asked the Civil Justice Council for advice on a viable form of costs protection by the end of March 2013. Continue reading
On 30 November 2012, following a 10-day trial, Mr Justice Bean dismissed a libel claim brought by Reginald Mengi, the Executive Chairman of IPP Ltd, a company which holds major newspaper and broadcasting interests in Tanzania ( EWHC 3445 (QB)). The defendant, Sarah Hermitage, who was represented by Carter-Ruck on a conditional fee basis, had set up a blog to record and to publicise as a warning to others her experience in Tanzania; how, with no protection from the local courts and officials, she and her husband were by threats and intimidation driven out of the country and forced to abandon their investment in their farm, Silverdale. Continue reading
Following the publication of the Leveson Report, Isabel Martorell gives an initial response to the Lawyer Magazine.
Lord Justice Leveson was right in a number of important respects. First, to recognise the significant failings in the culture, ethics and standards of the press and the overwhelming arguments for a strong independent regulator. While a majority of the British press do uphold and adhere to proper journalistic standards, the actions of a significant minority have demonstrated time and again that self-regulation does not work. Continue reading
Richard Hodge comments in the Lawyer Magazine on the forthcoming publication of the Leveson Report.
Leveson LJ’s remit includes providing recommendations for effective regulation to support the integrity and freedom of the press, while encouraging the highest ethical standards. So what should we expect? Continue reading