Professional negligence and indemnity: Surrender the lost cause
Solicitors wishing to terminate their retainer with clients intent on pursuing a hopeless case will draw comfort from a recent key decision by the Court of Appeal. It saw the Court support the solicitors' decision to terminate their retainer with their client in light of his desire to advance arguments that were not properly arguable. Richard Buxton (Solicitors) v Mills-Owens  concerned a statutory appeal against the grant of planning permission. Counsel had advised the client that the appeal could only proceed on the basis of a procedural or legal error by the planning inspector and that only one of these grounds had a chance of succeeding.
A recent Court of Appeal ruling giving solicitors the right to terminate the retainer of time-wasting claimants has been welcomed by many, but has also created uncertainty. Barlows’ Richard Harrison and Triona Fitzgerald report
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