"New" web sites from 2012

"New" items from 2012 covering interesting new web sites developments and technology for UK lawyers

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For older (archived) "New" items, see New from 2008 or New from 2009 or New from 2010 or New from 2011 or New from 2012 or New from 2013 .

For current "New" items, see the main New page.

This is the page for what was "new" in 2012. This page was last updated on December 27th 2012.

  • Tomorrow's Lawyers is the new book (published by Oxford University Press) by Richard Susskind. It is smaller and more compact than Richard's previous books and very inexpensive (around £10) but contains the condensed and assimilated wisdom of one of the most important thinkers that we have about the way that legal services are changing, and will be delivered in the years to come.

    The book is in three parts. The first offers an updated restatement of Richard's views on the future of legal services. This was broadly the topic of his first book, The Future of Law, which came out in 1996, and which described the overwhelming (and disruptive) changes which he foresaw in the way that Law would be practised and delivered in the years to come. He has brought his body of thought up to date every few years since then, most recently in The End of Lawyers? in 2008 but he now presents it in a newly burnished form in Tomorrow's Lawyers.

    The second part looks at the new legal landscape - what legal firms will look like, the role of in-house lawyers, the new ways in which legal services will be provided and how all this affects the citizen's access to law. He is by no means uniformly pessimistic about this - he sees legal knowledge and advice being provided in many new ways, many of them online, at the same time as some of the older ways (one to one legal advice) become less viable.

    In the third section he turns to the prospects for young lawyers. This has also been one of the themes of his past books - not just looking at "the future of law" but also the future for young lawyers. In this section, he looks at what the new legal jobs will be like, who will employ young lawyers, how they should be trained and (very importantly) the questions which these same young lawyers should be asking of their future employers.

    The book is very direct, compact and easy to read, even if assimilating the ideas in it may take a little longer! You may not always agree with Richard's ideas but you cannot, surely, think that he is asking the wrong questions! Make it your new year's resolution to read this book.

    Professor Richard Susskind OBE is an author, speaker, and independent adviser to major professional firms and to national governments. His main area of expertise is the future of professional service, with particular reference to information technology. He has worked on legal technology for over 30 years.

    Last updated December 13th 2012.

  • The monthly Legal Technology Insider newsletter has been rebranded and redesigned as Legal IT Insider and expanded its global news coverage of legal technology, ediscovery and social media trends within the legal services sector. The digital edition is now available free of charge. You can sign up for it here - and you can still buy a print version published on the Insider's hallmark orange paper! The main change has been expanding the content and doubling the pagination to cover all relevant UK, US, APAC and worldwide legal IT news in one issue, reflecting that a decision taken in London or Los Angeles can now have immediate repercussions for companies and law firms in New York, Frankfurt, Hong Kong, Dubai, Cape Town, Rio, Singapore and Sydney. Editor and legal IT guru Charles Christian is still in Charge!

    Last updated December 10th 2012.

    Important Exhibition on IT for Lawyers - and it's free

  • The 13th Annual Legal IT Business Show will take place on 5-6 March 2013 at the Business Design Centre in London. This is the largest exhibition in Europe on Software and Services for the Legal Profession with 60+ exhibitors demonstrating the latest developments to over 1100 senior managers and buyers from law firms and in-house legal departments. There will be product launches and seminars on topical areas of interest. For the latest programme and to register for your free visitor pass visit the site, as above.

    Last updated December 6th 2012.

    If you have an employee who spends too much time on Facebook, what can you do about it?

  • Andrew Crisp, of Advantage Employment Law (a division of Mason Bullock), writes on this topic in his employment law blog.

    Would you like some advice in writing a persuasive proposal or tender document?

  • Graham Laing of Professional Services Marketing firm Rokman Laing provides a free 10 page guide to preparing tender & proposal documents for professional service firms.

    Last updated December 1st 2012.

    Software for lawyers "in the cloud" is coming of age

  • LawCloud is now celebrating its hundreth UK Law Firm using its legal software "in the cloud". LawCloud provides software and support for solicitors in the UK who are looking to start up a new law firm or existing traditional small or medium sized firms looking to modernise and do more with technology, offering in-house and hosted systems.

    Last updated November 20th 2012.

    Do you use Google Analytics? Do you use it effectively?

  • Google Analytics (GA) is a service offered by Google that generates detailed statistics about visits to a particular website. It is by far the most widely used website statistics service partly (at least) because it is free. Many firms use the service but probably few get the benefits that they could, if they really understood the data. One key problem is how to compare your results with other firms. Are you doing well - or not? David Gilroy of Conscious Solutions believes that a lot more could be learned if people were prepared to share their data - made anonymous of course - and each year, he provides a "statistics benchmarking audit" - effectively a data collection point and analysis - to enable this to happen. If you send him your data for September (6 key metrics), he will provide you with a full copy of the anonymised data and the analysis, along with comparison to the historic data from 2010 & 2011 all free of charge. In 2011 there were 180 firms participating in the study and this year he hopes to have around 300 taking part. Find out more here. And he provides an additional bonus - the chance to win an iPad Mini. Every firm that provides their data will be put in a draw for an iPad Mini.

    Last updated November 10th 2012.

    Study shows that only 1.2% of smaller law firms have a client feedback facility on their website

  • LegallyBetter has carried out a survey of 160 smaller law firms’ websites with respect to the provision of a client feedback facility and have discovered that only two of these firms have any readily accessible online client feedback facility on their website. Jon Hepburn, MD of Legallybetter, says "Law firms need to show that they are achieving the required outcomes under the new OFR compliance. Just asking a client for feedback by sending an email or posting a questionnaire may well not be enough for the SRA. The requirement is to actively seek and record feedback and act on the findings. No law firm wants to compete on price – reputation maximisation and a responsive attitude to clients is a must, as is the ability to request those all-important recommendations.” Legallybetter provides a number of services relating to audited client feedback.

    A new Irish directory of solicitors

  • Legal Panda is an Irish Solicitor directory and law community. Listing every solicitor registered in Ireland, it aims to help connect people and businesses with solicitors. The site also contains a question & answer section with regular opinion and news pieces on the law. Set up in 2012, the site is well designed and easy to use, as well as comprehensive.

    Last updated October 17th 2012.

    A day well spent - and good fun too.

  • Conscious Solutions provide Websites, Marketing, CRM and Intranets for law firms. The company is led by David Gilroy who has a great gift of providing cutting edge information in a simple-to-understand way. I have just been to a day course he provided called "Digital Marketing Masterclass for Law Firms" and I found it fascinating. If he does any more of these classes, clear a day from your diary and go to it.

    Last updated October 15th 2012.

    CaseCheck intends to compete with some of the largest publishers in the world, such as LexisNexis and Westlaw, with a new premium version

  • CaseCheck, established in 2007 by Stephen Moore, is a free legal resource that provides case reports and expert summaries online. With more than 12,000 case reports from across the UK and EU provided by solicitors, barristers, advocates and academics, there are now 20,000 registered users from over 200 locations around the world. The site has 40 categories of case law and many more sub-categories. Approximately 130 case summaries are added to the site each month and the resource is a sector leader in the areas of employment and personal injury case law content. Casecheck is now launching a premium version, costing from £2 a week for individual users with new facilities such as mobile versions of the site, personalisation of the weekly bulletins, increased scope of the current awareness, increased regularity and comprehensiveness of the case law and a personal CPD recorder. Funding to develop the enhancements has been provided by the West of Scotland Loan Fund and RBS.

    Last updated October 11th 2012.

    A new development in Central and Eastern Europe

  • LawTech Europe Congress takes place in Prague on November 12th 2012. This is a major event with the aim of setting up a new hub of IT and the Law in central and Eastern Europe. Speakers known to UK people include Richard Susskind, Charles Christian and Chris Dale but there will also be (obviously) many speakers from the rest of Europe, looking to interact and learn from each other's experiences. There is a video promo channel here. Although I am not able to go myself, it does sound like a very interesting event and the organisers have been kind enough to extend a free VIP ticket to everyone who comes to know of LTEC through my website. (Normal cost is 199 euros) The registration link is here and the discount code is 96-STGEORGES-RD.

    Last updated October 6th 2012.

    Well designed new site

  • Brain & Spinal Injuries comes from Leigh Day & Co a specialist claimant personal injury law firm. The site provides a series of case studies, using video reports from the members of the family of the injured people and descriptions of the legal processes involved from the lawyers handling the cases. The style is straight forward and informative and would be very useful to families wondering what to do next.

    Last updated October 2nd 2012.

    A thought provoking blog from Tim Kevan

  • The Legal Terrier Blog is written by Tim Kevan who was a practising barrister for ten years and is the author of the BabyBarista blog and books. It focuses on digging up the points that matter to solicitors and barristers across the spectrum but with a particular emphasis on personal injury and reform of legal services.

    Last updated October 1st 2012.

    Interesting resource on the European Court of Human Rights
    ECHR Online offers free information on the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) and the jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights. The site is created by German Lawyer Holger Hembach who has worked for the UN, OSCE and the Council of Europe on projects in the area of justice reform and he has been involved with training lawyers on the Convention and assessing draft laws in the light of the guarantees enshrined in it. The motivation behind the site is to provide information to lawyers, potential applicants and NGOs, particularly in countries where books on the Convention are hard to come by. The site also provides links to other resources and organisations in this area.

    Last updated September 23rd 2012.

  • Junior Bar Face Increasing Difficulty Getting Barrister Mortgages is the title of an article provided by Mortgage Broker Capital Fortune. The article has been written by Rob Killeen, himself a barrister, and he highlights the problems of young barristers who often have huge debts after their training period. They may be owed considerable amounts in fees, but this does not apparently count in the calculations made when you try to get a mortgage.

    Last updated September 8th 2012.

    More ways in which a firm can get involved with particular issues

  • Leigh Day & Co. based in London, provide a specialised site at Support Equal Pay with extensive information on women's rights to equal pay - and the many ways in which they are denied this. They also sponsor www.womensequalitynetwork.org.uk. Both these sites cover discrimination and employment topics in some depth and would certainly be of interest to women looking for legal representation.

    Last updated August 26th 2012.

    Another bunch of specialised web sites!

  • Switalskis - Wakefield, Bradford, Leeds, Halifax, Huddersfield, Pontefract and Dewsbury, also and another...
  • Mark Thompson Law - Exeter, also

    Last updated August 13th 2012.

    The latest firm with a string of specialised sites is a Welsh firm...

  • Curtis Legal - Monmouth, also

    Last updated August 1st 2012.

    New web site for HUDOC

  • The HUDOC database provides access to the case-law of the European Court of Human Rights (Grand Chamber, Chamber and Committee judgments, decisions, communicated cases, advisory opinions and legal summaries from the Case-Law Information Note), the European Commission of Human Rights (decisions and reports) and the Committee of Ministers (resolutions). As of Summer 2013, the data base has been completely reformulated to provide better searching facilities and access to the ECHR judgments and decisions. There is a useful set of FAQs here.

    Last updated July 23rd 2012.

  • I have just set up a new prize - the firm with the largest number of specialised web sites! The prize has been won by Bonallack and Bishop of Salisbury, Andover, Amesbury, Verwood and Warminster.

    Their latest bunch of specialised web sites are:

  • www.grandparentrights.co.uk
  • www.hipreplacementrecall.co.uk
  • www.leaseextensionuk.co.uk
  • military-lawyer.co.uk
  • www.how-to-claim-compensation.co.uk
    They already have
  • www.enfranchisementsolicitors.co.uk (leasehold property),
  • www.prenuptial-agreement.co.uk, thenowinnofeesolicitor.co.uk,
  • www.intellectual-property-lawyer.co.uk,
  • www.compromiseagreementsolicitorsuk.co.uk,
  • www.armydivorce.co.uk,
  • www.militarydivorce.co.uk,
  • www.extendingalease.co.uk,
  • professional-negligence-claim.co.uk,
  • contestingawilluk.co.uk,
  • freehold-purchase.co.uk,
  • ip-lawyer.legalbloggers.co.uk
    Or is there anyone out there with more?
    I am feeling a bit tired now and I need to go and have a little rest.

    Last updated July 14th 2012.

    A Digital Marketing Masterclass in October, with a special rate if you quote this web site!

  • Conscious Solutions, led by David Gilroy, is offering a full day's training in digital marketing. There are sessions on website best practice, search engine optimisation, social media, email newsletters, visitor analytics and online video. Running for four days in Manchester, Birmingham, London and Bristol, the day offers 5 hours of CPD (SRA Accreditation pending), for a vanishingly low price of £67 plus VAT and 10% less if you use a reference code of DELIA10 when booking. Locations:
    Tuesday 9 October @ Village Hotel, Cheadle
    Wednesday 10 October @ Village Hotel, Solihull
    Tuesday 16 October @ Rembrandt Hotel, South Kensington, London
    Thursday 18 October @ Engineers House, Clifton, Bristol

    Last updated July 10th 2012.

    BAILII and BIALL are easy to confuse from the names, but...

  • The British and Irish Association of Law Librarians (BIALL) is to double its annual donation commitment to The British and Irish Legal Information Institute (BAILII) - from £5,000 a year to £10,000 a year, for the next 3 years. BAILII is a non-profit making charitable trust which aims to promote the service and public access to primary legal materials in general. BAILII maintains an interactive database of full text primary legal materials, available without charge on the Internet. The service is a major tool for legal research and the continued availability and development of the service is of major importance to the practice and teaching of law. The BAILII database has on average in excess of 45,000 requests a day.
    Despite its amazing contribution to free access to the Law in the UK and Ireland (and affiliated to other similar services around the world) BAILII desperately needs continuing and new donations to maintain and develop the service.

    Last updated July 2nd 2012.

    Latest important legal blog

  • Eutopia law comes from members of Matrix Chambers' EU law group. It comments selectively on interesting developments in EU law, particularly as they affect lawyers’ practice areas, and at contributing to the debate on topical issues. It is not intended to promote any particular party line or view-point. The name is a pun on Thomas More's Utopia (published in 1516). "Utopia" is already a pun in Greek: it can be understood as meaning both no-place (ou-topia) and good-place (eu-topia). Eutopia is a further extension of the pun! Current posts look at the apparent suspension of the rule of law in the EU as countries seek to remedy the eurozone crisis.

    Last updated June 28th 2012.

  • IRIS Legal, the largest provider of software and IT services to UK law firms and chambers, has won the "Best Technology Project at The Lawyer Awards 2012." The project related to the delivery of the hosted IRIS Meridian Law Connected project to No5 Chambers, one of the largest sets of barristers’ chambers in England & Wales. The project involved a large and complex integrated IT system spread across three UK locations. No5 Chambers outsources all of its IT requirements to IRIS Legal. The full list of awards can be seen here.

    Last updated June 21st 2012.

  • Legal Futures reports that the Law Society is investigating whether to launch its own solicitor comparison website. The society’s existing Find a Solicitor website provides basic information for consumers, but a revamped site could include more detail on quality, areas of specialism and even price (although this is acknowledged to be a very tricky area). Apparently the Society has commissioned a report on this.
    My opinion... The provision of a comparison website from the "official" solicitors body would make all firms study the site and then argue heatedly with the Society. It would be a bed of nails! Existing comparison sites "get away with it" because no one of them is significantly important in the overall scheme of things to be worth a lot of hassle. But if the Law Society were to provide such a site....

    Last updated June 16th 2012.

    Latest blog of interest

  • D'Souza. THE criminal barrister is "the trials and tribulations of Dominic D'Souza. THE not so serious musings of a criminal barrister instructed to defend in the most serious and complex cases." He muses on the nature of the Bar, the nature of a "calling" to the Bar, the nature of crime and why he is not thinking kind and generous thoughts about the burglar who stole his car.

    Last updated June 3rd 2012.

    Getting up to date on the Justice site

  • The Justice website was launched in April 2011 as the Government’s attempt to bring together all web sites related to the UK Justice system for the professional user. Initially it was a rather desperate attempt to patch together lots of different sites, all with different underlying architectures and different views of what they were trying to do but by now we now have an attractive and well designed site which covers the (very complicated) real life situation about as well as it could. After all, any web site which made the British legal system appear simple, logical and straightforward would surely be an oversimplification! A few handy pointers: Despite the centralisation of most of the "Justice" related sites, described above, the following two services seem to have stayed outside it and are actually rather hard to find....
  • Money Claim Online (MCOL) enables people to issue a claim via the internet for a fixed sum under £100,000. There is a fee of £27 minimum and the claimant fills in a number of screens online to set up the claim. The service also enables a claimant to enter judgment, file an acknowledgement of service or defence and apply for a warrant of execution, online.
  • Possession Claim Online (PCOL) is a service provided by Her Majesty's Courts Service for claims in County Courts for residential property brought by a landlord against a tenant, solely on the ground of arrears of rent (but not a claim for forfeiture of a lease) or a mortgagee against a mortgagor, solely on the ground of default in the payment of sums due under a mortgage. In other words, the site allows for straightforward claims with no extra complications but if the various conditions apply, the claim can be launched online and also defended online. Fees are paid by credit card online. These systems can be used by solicitors processing multiple claims as well as individuals.

    Last updated June 2nd 2012.

  • Thomson Reuters have a new web site covering all their legal solutions, products and services for the UK and Ireland. The subsections of the "Legal Solutions" part of the site are: BPM & Case Management, Business Development and Marketing, Commentary & Analysis, eBilling & Project Management, Federated Search & Knowledge Management, Human Resources, Legal Research, Legal Updates & Currency, Risk Mitigation and Training & Online Learning. Of these, the ones best known to lawyers so far are probably Commentary & Analysis (Sweet & Maxwell books and eBooks), Legal Research (Westlaw), Legal Updates & Currency (Lawtel) and Training and online Learning (CPD Webinars). The "Legal Solutions" section describes the products generically but there is also a section called "Products & Services A to Z" which enables the viewer to locate a particular product or service, irrespective of generic type.

    Last updated May 25th 2012.

  • JustCite, the provider-neutral legal citator from Justis Publishing Ltd, now indexes both The Jersey Law Reports and the Jersey Judgments series. The laws of Jersey have an international appeal, with many cases having a particular focus on banking, tax, foundations and trusts, and financial services. Influenced by English and French legal systems, they have their roots in Norman law. The Jersey Judgments, which are provided by The Jersey Legal Information Board (JLIB) , contain the judgments published by Jersey’s Royal Court from 1950 to 1984. The Jersey Law Reports, also from JLIB, cover matters of lasting legal importance from Jersey’s Royal Court and Court of Appeal from 1985 onwards. JustCite places these cases in context and also links to their full text online.

    Last updated May 24th 2012.

    A very large new player in the provision of legal services

  • The Co-operative Legal Services is already a major player in the legal services market, operating out of Bristol and employing around 450 legally trained and support staff. In March, it was the first major consumer brand to be granted alternative business structure (ABS) status under the new Legal Services Act, allowing it to offer a range of consumer legal services previously only available from private solicitors. Now it has announced that it will open five additional regional hubs across England and Wales over the next 5 years and set up a new family law operation in London later this year. The expansion will create 3,000 jobs in the legal sector. As well as family law, Co-operative Legal Services will offer a comprehensive range of consumer services including will writing, probate and estate administration, conveyancing, personal injury claims, family law and employment law services, all provided through either a telephone service, via the web utilising new functionality, or through selected face-to face services.

    Last updated May 23rd 2012.

  • Eclipse Legal Systems, now the UK's largest independently owned legal IT provider, is celebrating its 25th birthday. The company was founded in May 1987 by Steve Ough (now Chief Software Architect). The Eclipse Proclaim solution is in use by over 16,000 individuals at 650 organisations and turnover has reached £9 million. As part of the year's celebrations, Eclipse's 2012 company conference (to which all 120 staff are invited) is taking place over a weekend in Barcelona. This year, Eclipse was the first-to-market with Case Management solutions designed exclusively for Alternative Business Structures. A recent (and eye catching) addition to the Eclipse Proclaim system is the ability to incorporate, completely within the fee-earner desktop, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.

    Last updated May 22nd 2012.

  • Samson Consulting is a marketing agency for solicitors run by non-practising solicitor Nick Jervis. Nick has produced a free guide 8 Proven WaysTo Win New Clients For Your Legal Practice. There is a lot of useful material in this including the importance of knowing what your client conversion strategy is at the moment, ways of encouraging existing clients to think of you when they need some additional legal assistance (or one of their friends does), the importance of building up, and keeping in touch with, people who might be interested in your services, how Google Adwords works (and whether you need it), and how to make the most of your own premises for advertising purposes. It's free!

    Last updated May 14th 2012.

  • The Telegraph today carries an article about a speech made by Lord Neuberger, the Master of the Rolls, to the Association of Costs Lawyers. He said that an alternative to hourly billing for legal work is needed urgently. He said businesses that base their charges simply on costs “do not deserve to succeed” or even “survive” and that some form of fixed costs for legal work would be a more viable alternative.

    Advance information: Online Information 2012, 20-21 November

  • Online Information is a well established conference and exhibition - not specifically related to legal topics but of considerable use to legal professionals who want to know what the trends are in this fast moving business. This year’s event is moving to The Victoria Park Plaza, London from 20 – 21 November, and will comprise a two day conference and exhibition. Topic areas will cover: Impact of mobile platforms and mobile working, social business, social media and the cloud, ebooks, big data, search and discovery solutions, multi-channel publishing, leadership skills and competencies. The event is not going to be free any longer; there will be a charge to attend the event but even the basic delegate level entrance ticket will allow access to the conference programme.

    Last updated May 8th 2012.

  • Social Media for Lawyers is a new page on this site, provided by legal technology expert Alex Heshmaty. Alex has also provided two other pages for this site - Legal Apps for Lawyers and Legal Apps for Individuals.

    Last updated April 20th 2012.

    Two new promotion ideas for a niche practice - a free course for landlords and a paid course as well!

  • The School for Landlords is a free course for landlords provided by solicitor Tessa shepperson of Landlord Law. Someone who registers for the course receives an email each week covering lots of the topics which a landlord (particularly a "smaller" landlord) needs to know but probably does not know. Now there is also a paid course called Easy Law for Landlords. The paid course is delivered over 20 weeks with articles, a discussion area, taught online tutorials, videos, interviews with industry experts (with transcripts) and quite a lot of one-to-one contact. This will launch in May and Tessa tells me that initial registrations are coming in well.

    Last updated March 31st 2012.

  • Kim Tasso's blog on "Observations on the management and marketing of professional services firms in the UK" is a very informative and lively resource with frequent postings on current management and marketing topics as well as interviews with key suppliers and commentators. Kim is a highly respected consultant for law firms in marketing and business development.

    Last updated March 18th 2012.

    Do you use cookies on your site?

  • Conscious Solutions have just published a detailed analysis of what they are recommending their clients as to how they should (and can) comply with the EU Cookie Directive that was enacted into law last year. The document can be downloaded from here (you do not have to register with Conscious to obtain this document - you can just download it). This directive is serious stuff! It cannot be ignored.

    Have you made a donation?

  • BAILII was founded in 2000 as a non-profit making charitable trust, with the aim of making access to primary legal materials free to everyone. It has built and is operating a subscription-free interactive database of full text primary legal materials available on the internet. The continued availability and development of the service is of major importance to the practice and teaching of law but its funding is not fixed or guaranteed in any way. BAILII has been carrying out a major appeal for funds over the last year. You can read more about this here. Quoting from this web page... "The appeal has met with a good initial response from barristers, solicitors, publishers and others who recognise how useful BAILII is. This has provided BAILII with sufficient offers of funding to see us through into 2014. However, many of the donations are single donations, and BAILII's income on the basis of existing offers of donations is not sufficient to meet BAILII's annual expenditure. It will therefore be essential to continue our appeal by going back to people who donated in 2011 to ask them if they are willing to repeat their donations, and we will continue to need to appeal to potential sponsors who have not previously made donations to BAILII."

    Last updated March 9th 2012.

    A new promotion idea - a free course for landlords!

  • The School for Landlords is a free course for landlords provided by solicitor Tessa shepperson of Landlord Law. Someone who registers for the course receives an email each week covering: landlords responsibilities, understanding the legal background, letting agents, choosing and checking tenants, tenancy agreements, tenancy deposits, rent, landlords repairing obligations, health and safety issues, shared houses and HMOs, eviction of tenants and (finally) a summary of the topics which have been covered together with a checklist of what to look out for. There is no charge but under a section called "What's the catch?" Tessa says: "There isn’t one! Other than that from time to time, we will email you about some of the services offered by us and our partners. But it is entirely up to you whether you decide to use them. The series will continue to be sent to you free of charge until it ends or you unsubscribe. You are under absolutely no obligation to buy anything."

    Last updated March 3rd 2012.

  • LexisWeb.co.uk is a relaunched version of the LexisNexis search engine that provides a great deal of free legal information and links into paid-for legal content from LexisNexis. It includes Acts and SI's (as enacted) and cases, which can be searched by practice area or by year. For digests or full transcripts, or consolidated legislation, you need a LexisNexis subscription. It is well designed and attractive, as well as easy to use, so it is a useful addition to the free legal resources available online although other resources, like BAILII and legislation.gov.uk provide similar material albeit in a different form.

    Last updated February 20th 2012.

    A very interesting new development

  • Riverview Law is the result of a firm of solicitors and a barristers' chambers coming together to share a brand. The two constituent parts are Riverview Chambers (Chief Executive barrister Chris Baylis and about 50 barristers who provide direct access on a fixed fee basis) and Riverview Solicitors (Senior Partner Andrew Reeves). Riverview Law is based in Bromborough, Wirral, and offers primarily business servicers but with some additional high end personal services such as divorce. They provide a variety of fixed price annual packages as well as outsourcing services for major corporations. An extra feature of Riverview Law is free access (as far as I can see, to any client or potential client - you have to register to gain access) to an online Legal Library with "over 650 plain English advice pages and over 450 documents, letters and templates". In answer to the question "why are you doing this" they say "We want to make sure that Riverview Law is at the forefront of your mind when your business next needs legal advice". Riverview Law is the trading name of LawVest Limited, apparently part owned by DLA Piper.

    Last updated February 14th 2012.

  • Practical law Company (PLC) are now publishing many of their book titles in English law, Scots law and tax titles online. The books have been licensed from legal publisher Bloomsbury and this is the first time that the books have been available online. The book content is integrated within PLC's own content so users can search for content within the books from the general PLC search and the books are listed under related PLC topics. You can browse the catalogue here and there is a free chapter available to view for each book. The books are made available on a subscription basis and all new editions are made available without additional charge during the period of the subscription. You can see more about this here.
    Note - quite a few Scottish titles amongst these online books now.

    Last updated February 11th 2012.

  • Matrix Chambers has made a significant donation to support the setting up of "Community Law Shops" in Hackney. Through its "Causes Fund", Matrix has pledged to pay towards the expenses of volunteer solicitors staffing the proposed Hackney Community Law Centre's "Community Law Shops" for their first two years of operation. The provision of extra solicitors and caseworkers in the Community Law Shops - supported and supervised by current Hackney Community Law Centre (HCLC) staff - will be a key component of HCLC’s efforts to engage with the needs of the local Hackney community. The charity is already in talks with the London Borough of Hackney about identifying potentially suitable venues and premises.

    Last updated February 4th 2012.

  • The Law Society have lunched a new Advocacy Section. This aims to create and facilitate a community of solicitor advocates. It will provide mentoring, training and networking opportunities on a circuit and national level and create the framework to provide the level of support delivered to barristers by their Inns of Court. The site will focus on the needs of criminal advocates in the first half of 2012 in preparation for the introduction of the new assessment regime, the Quality Assurance Scheme for Advocates (QASA). The group will also cater for the needs of advocates at the magistrates' and county court levels and for civil, family and children advocates in due course.

    Last updated January 19th 2012.

    This is the first product I have come across designed to record time from mobile devices

  • Airtime Manager are authors of the AP4 solution which enables users to capture time from their mobile devices such as BlackBerry, iPhone and the Android range of smart phones. An event capture module accounts for client-related time and expenses associated with wireless calls, email and document review. A stopwatch function can track meetings, travel time and other billable events. A simple form allows the creation of time entries on the train, at the airport, or anywhere else, on the run. Billable time and costs are automatically transferred to the accounting system, or to an administrator for review. There is also a hosted version available for individuals and smaller firms.

    Last updated January 16th 2012.

    This is an amazing site with some stunning photographs of cities worldwide - do have a look

  • Kinney Recruiting is a legal recruitment agency with a worldwide presence. They specialise in the permanent placement of experienced, qualified lawyers in law firms and in-house companies both in the UK and the rest of the world. The site contains job listings and up-to-the-minute legal headlines.

  • The Law Society have issued a set of Practice Notes on Social Media. The paper describes the main types of social media and distinguishes between them (some are more appropriate to professional use than others); describes the benefits of social networking in terms of being open to contacts with clients and potential clients but also the risks; how to keep professional and private uses separate; how to apply professional standards to these new media; and how to set up a social media policy for the firm.

    Last updated January 13th 2012.

    Special New Year offer....

  • Solicitors Case Management Systems (SC@MS), created by solicitors, provides case and practice management software for solicitors and 2012 is their 10th year in business. To celebrate, they are making a 10% donation to charity for the first 10 new orders for software licences that they receive during the year. (The charities will be selected by the clients.) See here for more info.

    An interesting group of Scottish sites

  • My Scottish Law blog comes from Bruce de Wert, a Scottish solicitor at Georgesons Solicitors of Wick and Thurso in Caithness. The blog is updated frequently with postings on Scottish Divorce, Scottish Powers of Attorney, Scottish Wills and topics relating to Property Law and Estate Agency. Bruce also offers a number of spcialised sites for the purchase of wills, powers of attorney and divorce services in Scotland, all at very reasonable rates with a particular emphasis on family law.

    Last updated January 11th 2012.

    A new development in legal publishing

  • ICLR Online is the new series of online law reports from the Incorporated Council of Law Reporting. Now, for the first time, ICLR is publishing its own reports digitally: previously the reports had been available on CD and online only through third party publishers: Justis, LexisNexis and Westlaw. ICLR Online includes all the reports published by ICLR for England and Wales since 1865 in each of the various reports series – The Law Reports, Weekly Law Reports, Industrial Cases Reports, Business Law Reports and Public and Third Sector Law Reports: over 77,000 case reports to date. It also incorporates CitatorPlus – a database of information about the subject matter, history, judicial consideration and current status of over 83,000 cases. These are not free - they are available on subscription only. However, The WLR Daily case summaries and case search continue to be offered free here. (Thanks to Nick Holmes for this information).

    Do you want to go back a little further? Please see New from 2011, New from 2010, New from 2009 and New from 2008.

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