159M compel solicitors to maintain insurance to indemnify civil liability

159m compel solicitors to maintain insurance to

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The Solicitors’ (Professional Indemnity) Rules (Cap.159M) compel solicitors to maintain insurance to indemnify civil liability arising from their work in private practice. Solicitors, especially partners, invest considerable time in client care and business development . 9 10
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6 Solicitors Business organisations: Partnership (firm), or limited liability partnership (LLP) since 2016 Under general partnerships, each partner is jointly and severally liable with other partners for all debts, liabilities, and obligations of partnership incurred while being partner. Unlike general partnerships, LLP shields innocent partners from personal liability for any liability arising from the provision of professional services by the LLP law firm due to default by a partner, employee, agent, or representative of that firm. Solicitors Specialization Local firms include: Big home-grown Hong Kong firms boutique firms Still smaller local firms Foreign firms include: international firms (e.g. large firms from London) other foreign law firms (e.g. from the Cayman Islands) As at 2 Nov 2019, there were 927 local law firms and 88 registered foreign law firms in Hong Kong. 11 12
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7 Barristers Nature of work: Specialize in advocacy Draft pleadings Oral & written advice (opinion) Full rights of audience in all courts Wear gowns, wigs, and bands in the superior courts and the District Court. Source: HKBA Barristers No direct access A barrister may not meet his lay client absent the instructing solicitor or the instructing solicitor’s representative. A barrister’s detachment from his client is to be promoted to reinforce the objectivity of his legal opinion. 13 14
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8 Barristers Business organisation: Sole-proprietor - Individual practitioner takes full responsibility for his work. Barristers organize themselves into sets of chambers. They share rent and chambers’ expenses. No contract with client or instructing solicitor, brief enforced only by professional complaints. Paid an “honorariam” Charge daily or hourly rates Barristers Cab-rank rule Bar Code 6.1 “A practising barrister must accept any brief to appear before a court or instruction to provide any other legal services in a field in which the barrister practises or professes to practise if: (a) the brief or instruction is within the barrister’s capacity, skill and experience ; (b) the barrister would be available to prepare and appear or otherwise work when the brief or instruction would require him to do so, and is not already committed to other engagements which may, as a real possibility, prevent him from being able to advance a client’s interests to the best of his skill and diligence; (c) the fee offered on the brief is proper ; and (d) the barrister is not obliged or permitted to refuse the brief or instruction under paragraphs 6.2 to 6.7…” Exception : conflict of interest or the possession of relevant confidential information 15 16
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9 Barristers Rondel v Worsley [1967] 3 All ER 933 (HL) “It is easier, pleasanter and more advantageous professionally for
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