Solicitors Immunity in UK Law

Leading Cases
  • Somasundaram v M. Julius Melchoir & Company
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 12 Jul 1988

    Both counsel submit, rightly in our judgment, that advice as to a plea is something which is so intimately connected with the conduct of the cause in court that it can fairly be said to be a preliminary decision affecting the way that the cause is to be conducted when it comes to a hearing, within the test proposed by McCarthy P. in Rees v. Sinclair and approved by the House of Lords in Saif Ali's case. Indeed it is difficult to think of any decision more closely so connected.

  • Saif Ali v Sydney Mitchell & Company
    • House of Lords
    • 02 Nov 1978

    I do not understand this formulation as suggesting an entirely new test, i.e. a double test requiring (a) intimate connection with the conduct of the cause in court and (b) necessity in the interests of the administration of justice. The latter words state the justification for the test but the test lies in the former words.

    No matter what profession it may be, the common law does not impose on those who practise it any liability for damage resulting from what in the result turn out to have been errors of judgment, unless the error was such as no reasonably well-informed and competent member of that profession could have made. So too the common law makes allowance for the difficulties in the circumstances in which professional judgments have to be made and acted upon.

    The first is that the barrister's immunity from liability for what he says and does in court is part of the general immunity from civil liability which attaches to all persons in respect of their participation in proceedings before a court of justice; judges, court officials, witnesses, parties, counsel and solicitors alike.

    Without the support of those additional grounds of public interest, as I have already indicated, I can find no sufficient reason for extending the immunity to anything that a barrister does out of court; save for a limited exception analogous to the extension of a witness's protection in respect of evidence which he gives in court to statements made by him to the client and his solicitor for the purpose of preparing the witness's proof for trial.

  • Stanton and Another v Callaghan and Others
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 08 Jul 1998

    On any basis the Defendant when attending the meeting with his opposite number enjoyed the immunity. It is true that he did not do so pursuant to 0.38 rule 38 but the purpose of the meeting was to identify those parts of the evidence and the other's opinion which they could agree and those which they could not. The duty to the Court must override the fear of suit arising out of a departure from a previously held position.

  • Meadow v General Medical Council
    • Queen's Bench Division (Administrative Court)
    • 17 Feb 2006

    Since I am applying a principle based on public policy to grant an immunity which has not hitherto been explicitly recognised, I can, I think, consider whether public policy requires that an absolute immunity should be granted. The approach of their Lordships in Darker's case indicates that immunity from suit, in respect of which the law has granted absolute immunity, should be confined as narrowly as reasonably possible.

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Legislation
  • Arbitration Act 1996
    • UK Non-devolved
    • 1 de Enero de 1996
    ......who has not replaced the other arbitrators. S-29 . Immunity of arbitrator. 29 Immunity of arbitrator. . (1) An arbitrator is not ...Charge to. S-75 . Charge to secure payment of solicitors' costs. 75 Charge to secure payment of solicitors' costs. . . The ......
  • Justice and Security Act 2013
    • UK Non-devolved
    • 1 de Enero de 2013
    ...... . (i) the possibility of a claim for public interest immunity in relation to the material,. . . (ii) the fact that there would be no ... or the High Court of Justiciary by virtue of section 25A of the Solicitors (Scotland) Act 1980, and. . . (c) in the case of an appointment by the ......
  • Courts and Legal Services Act 1990
    • UK Non-devolved
    • 1 de Enero de 1990
    ...... respect to certain officers of the Supreme Court; to amend the Solicitors Act 1974; to amend the Arbitration Act 1950; to make provision with ...servant or agent of the Crown, or as enjoying any status,. immunity or privilege of the Crown. . (7) The Advisory Committee's property ......
  • Access to Justice Act 1999
    • UK Non-devolved
    • 1 de Enero de 1999
    ...... magistrates and magistrates' courts; and to make provision about immunity from action and costs and indemnities for certain officials exercising ...remuneration to barristers or solicitors the Lord Chancellor shall. consult the General Council of the Bar and the ......
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Books & Journal Articles
  • Forensic Immunity Post‐Osman
    • Núm. 64-2, Marzo 2001
    • The Modern Law Review
    ...... way that cause is to be conducted when it comes to a hearing.’ 6 Then the whole set of conditions for immunity had to be overhauled when solicitors were granted rights of audience in 1990. 7 So, forensic immunity, which started life as an exclusive exemption for advocates’ acts done in court, ......
  • Professional Negligence And The Quality Of Legal Services–‐An Economic Perspective
    • Núm. 46-6, Noviembre 1983
    • The Modern Law Review
    ...... In England and Wales, negli- gence by solicitors, who represent the largest group of legal practi- tioners, is ... of the justifications for limited liability and immunity from liability. B. Market Failure In an ideal market for legal ......
  • BETWEEN MARKET AND STATE: THE LEGAL PROFESSION IN TURMOIL1
    • Núm. 52-3, Mayo 1989
    • The Modern Law Review
    ...... “over- crowding.” Yet just a few years later solicitors are bemoaning the “recruitment crisis.” What explains this ... barristers or solicitors) should continue to enjoy immunity in advocacy. At the same time, the Law Society’s ......
  • The Extent of Criminal Complicity
    • Núm. 42-3, Mayo 1979
    • The Modern Law Review
    ...... 19791 NOTES OF CASES 319 THE SCOPE OF AN ADVOCATE’S IMMUNITY IN NEGLIGENCE ACTIONS WHAT are the limits of an advocate’s ... that this applied to solicitors as well as to barristers and that it did not apply to ......
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Law Firm Commentaries
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