Monthly Archives: August 2013

The godmother

Judge Shira Scheindlin of the US District Court for the Southern District of New York has been at it again!

Famous for her ground breaking judgments on e-discovery spoliation in the Zubulake and Montreal Pension plan cases, the judge has now delivered a third ruling on this subject.

Law Technology News carried an article earlier this month entitled Scheindlin Not Charmed When Revisiting Spoliation a Third Time where the judge criticised the claimants Sekisui America Corp for their failure to implement a litigation hold for fifteen months when they knew there was going to be litigation and, worse still, for deleting a batch of emails in its ongoing case for breach of contract including the personal email folder of one of the defendants. Continue reading

Time to share?

Recently (July 10th 2013) I wrote a piece called Hang a Shingle  which featured a certain Casey Flaherty who is corporate counsel at Kia Motors America.

My piece featured a short five minute interview with him by Monica Bay of Legal Technology News (Casey Flaherty on Tech Audits.) where Mr Flaherty discusses making lawyers undergo technical audits before he hires them.

As if that was not enough for us lawyers, Mr Flaherty is now in the news once more. This time he is talking on the subject of the cost of e-discovery. What is more, he is asking for e-discovery vendors to help him standardise the process of comparing EDD vendor cost projections so that he (and others) can compare apples with apples. Continue reading

Miranda is nicked

When David Miranda was stopped at Heathrow in transit to Brazil, the police detained him for the nine hours maximum allowed by the relevant anti-terrorist legislation. He was questioned about classified material on his laptop said to have been obtained from Edward Snowden, the whistleblower now kicking his heels in Russia in an attempt to escape inquiry and prosecution by the United States. It appears that Mr Miranda’s partner, Glenn Greenwald, a journalist at The Guardian, may also be involved if only because he has been writing a series of articles on material received from Mr Snowden. Continue reading

Summer in the City

American friends of mine emailed from sunny Washington the other day to complain (if that is the right word) that they had been living and working in the UK for a number of years and that it was only after they left to go back to the US that we in England had what you might call a proper summer!! At any rate, it has been reasonably good since the start of July.

The fair weather, however,  has not deterred the outpouring of news in this part of London. Assuming that not everyone is plugged into their smart devices over the holidays, there is much catching up to be done when the holidays are over. I have tried to keep up with developments during August, not least because I am going away in September, but also to make it easier for all those returning to the office in the next week or so to catch up on what they have been missing.

To add to the growing number of unmissable items is an article by Andy Ellis in the Law Society Gazette of August 15th called Relief from Sanctions in costs budgeting.

To be up to speed on what is happening in the courts some four or five months into the new regime for costs in most litigation cases, you should read Mr Ellis’ article. Without wishing in any way to steal his thunder, I was gratified to note that of the five recent cases he mentions, four have already been the subject of comment in this blog! The fifth is the decision of Mr Justice Walker in the QBD dated 25th July 2013 in Wyche v Careforce Group Plc, which was unreported.

The lesson is clear. To know what is happening and how the courts are applying the new rules on costs, read this blog and/or Mr Ellis in the Law Society Gazette.



What’s in a name?

We are clearly in the silly season!

Or are we? At least one high profile person has their business head firmly screwed on.

The tennis player Maria Sharapova is not one for bashfulness at the best of time. No one who grunts as she does, could ever be accused of shyness!

Sharapova was reported recently to have been considering an application to the Supreme Court of Florida for permission to change her name for the duration of the US Open to “Sugarpova” in support of her new line in sweets.

Now it seems, after “mature consideration”, she has changed her mind so umpires at Flushing Meadow will be spared having to call out the scores for la Sugarpova!! Continue reading

From Petri Dish to Barbecue

You can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.

So the saying goes, but if that means that it is impossible to make something of quality with inferior materials, it seems that scientists beg to differ.

The Economist reports that a few weeks ago on August 5th, in London, approximately one hundred journalists were treated to the launch of what has been billed as a new way to grow meat in the future. They were shown the world’s first laboratory hamburger grown from cow’s muscle cells. The resulting white blob had to be coloured with beetroot juice to turn it a more familiar red and flavoured with saffron to alleviate the appalling taste. Continue reading

California calling

I confess that I had forgotten that there was a draft report on my trip to Southern California this spring lying unpublished in what passes for my junk drawer for this blog. Publication of the latest edition of the Commentary published by the Litigation Counsel of America (LCA) has stirred me into action.

You can read my review of the recent Spring Conference and Induction of Fellows held at Pelican Hill, Newport Beach between May 1st-3rd 2013 here, or you can read what follows. Continue reading


Once again we appear to have encountered a problem with email notifications to our subscribers.

Many of you will see the posts anyway, either by logging onto the blog or by following us on Twitter where the links are always published but in case you have missed one or two posts, here are links to five posts which may have been affected;

Snakes and Ladders  

CMCs in Birmingham


Costs Budgets and Plebgate

Geeks in Jeans

Add these to your reading pile for the summer and remember it is not yet over. A heatwave is forecast for the end of the month, including the August Bank Holiday!


Geeks in Jeans

Sitting on a bus recently in the Austrian Alps, I watched carefully as the driver inched along a narrow road twisting and turning above a ravine where many feet below a raging torrent of still melting snow rushed headlong downwards, ever downwards.

Our driver was not aware of or concerned by how I felt about the plunge to my right; his attention was all on the cyclist to his front. Aged at least 70 and apparently oblivious to the traffic behind him, the cyclist meandered aimlessly all over the carriageway, (if that narrow stretch qualifies for that description) plugged into his favourite music, showing off to the rest of us his immaculately ordered biking kit, complete with helmet, water bottle, brightly coloured jacket and, of course, lycra shorts. He was doing at least 5 mph (along the relatively flat stretch) and appeared to be totally unaware of the traffic building behind him.

Eventually, the driver was able to edge past the still oblivious cyclist and continue on to the starting point for our four hour walk over the mountains back to our destination and I quickly forgot about bikers in lycra. That is, until I returned home to find myself confronted by geeks in jeans. Continue reading

Costs Budgets and Plebgate

It is a reasonably sound bet that when former Chief Whip, Andrew Mitchell, attempted to leave Downing Street with his bicycle, he never expected to be forging new law a few months later.

The story is, of course, well known. When trying to leave via the security gates, Mitchell became embroiled in an argument with the police about which gate he should use. It is alleged that he swore at the police and called them “plebs.” Mr Mitchell denies that he called the policeman a pleb and the matter rumbles on with police inquiries, court cases and Mr Mitchell’s political career currently on hold.

Now it seems that News Group Newspapers is set to double the volume of case law for which it is responsible in the area of cost budgets following the Jackson reforms. Continue reading