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Medical/legal services: Legal DNA Testing, Immigration DNA Testing, Paternity Testing, Legal Drug Testing and Legal Alcohol Testing.

DNA testing: the fastest route to the truth

Courses from Nick Holmes and Delia Venables
Access to law and resources 2015 - 5 hours CPD
Internet Legal Issues 2015 - 5 hours CPD
Purchase online from Nick Holmes' infolaw site

Last updated November 26th 2015.
Halsbury’s Law Exchange provides serious discussions on major issues

  • Halsbury’s Law Exchange is a legal think tank, hosted by LexisNexis. It aims to communicate ideas on reform or legal direction to decision makers and the legal sector and promote debate through papers, reports, events and media pieces. As it says about itself "Through our legal white papers and current projects, it seeks to be a legal think tank in the true sense of the term; to debate the legal issues of the day without political or commercial agenda and to influence and prompt change." There are in-depth papers on most areas of law (rather than a rapid fire approach of short items) and an opportunity to comment and debate online. The Law Exchange is run by a Board consisting of leading lawyers, with a wide range of contributors and chaired by Joshua Rozenberg.

    Transcription: accurate, cost effective and confidential. Also audio transcription, dictation and PACE recordings. We will give you a quote!

    Last updated November 21st 2015.
    Thomson Reuters and Bloomsbury Publishing work together on e-books

  • Thomson Reuters and Bloomsbury Publishing will jointly publish a selection of Bloomsbury’s legal print titles as eBooks through Thomson Reuters ProView, the leading professional eReader platform.

    ProView is the first eReader platform specifically built for professional use, with advanced features such as full-text search, secured notes and highlights, and content updating. It is available for iPad users at the Apple App Store, Android tablet users at Google Play and the Amazon Appstore for Android, and for Windows and Mac users.

    Thomson Reuters will distribute ten titles from Bloomsbury Publishing: Law of Torts, Financial Services Investigations and Enforcement, EMI Share Options, Financial Services Law Guide, Accounting Principles for Tax Purposes, Fraud – A Practitioner’s Guide, Irish Land Law, The Scottish Legal System, Richardson and Clark: Sexual Offences a Practitioners Guide, and Sports Law and Practice.

    logo saying NEW Internet Newsletter for Lawyers - Nov/Dec 2015 issue! Free to view online.
  • Scott Vine of Clifford Chance explains what open access means
  • Eduardo Ustaran of Hogan Lovells suggests an action plan for life after Safe Harbor
  • Barristers Chris Bryden and Michael Salter on reputational risks of social media
  • Mindy Gofton of I-COM on how SEO has changed as search engines have developed
  • Stephen Crowne CEO of the Bar Council introduces the Direct Access Portal
  • Christian Browne of Summerfield Browne shows how he uses LinkedIn to recruit staff
  • Alex Heshmaty explains the rise of ad blocking and the surrounding debate
  • Nick Holmes reviews Typography for Lawyers and The Future of the Professions
  • Newsletter Feature How cloud-hosted software solutions can help small law firms
  • Last updated November 19th 2015.
    The obstacles facing access to justice for all

  • Barrister Magazine covers President of the Law Society Jonathan Smithers' words on the obstacles facing access to justice for all. Here is my shortened version:

    "Two months ago, the Queen Mary Legal Advice Centre in London had to temporarily close its enquiry system for the first time in nine years due to a surge in demand.

    The consequences of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO), which removed legal aid from hundreds of thousands of people, are coming home to roost. Before the cuts, this Advice Centre received around 120 enquiries a month. In September last year, it received more than twice that, with 243 requests for legal advice, in areas where the cuts have had the most impact.

    Legal aid cuts are also having an impact on the mental health of those denied access to legal support, and this has a knock-on impact to public services.

    Litigants in person have also greatly increased and this particularly affects victims of domestic violence who now face tough evidence requirements before they can even receive advice and assistance.

    We await the Ministry of Justice findings on the impact of its policies on access to justice. The experience of the past two years has proved that removing lawyers from the process is a false economy and it is having a significant knock-on cost for the public purse, as well as a devastating personal impact on people who cannot get help."

    Last updated November 11th 2015.
    Almost 5% of new solicitors in 2014 were over 40

  • The Independent reports that the legal profession is opening its doors to mature career-switchers with nearly 5% of newly enrolled solicitors being over 40. In other interesting figures in the 2014 annual statistics report from The Law Society, 48% of practising solicitors are women while representation of black, Asian and minority ethnic groups is now at 15%, more than double the 2000 level.

    Last updated November 5th 2015.
    Advice for young lawyers seeking good jobs!

  • Seven Sins of the Law Firm Interview comes from National Accident Helpline and provides advice for law firm applicants. There is advice on avoiding a muddled CV, tryng not to leave a trail of indiscreet social media, what to wear for an interview, the benefits of researching the firm involved, and avoiding cliches like "I love the law". Whilst written with humour, there is good advice here.

    There is also good advice for how to survive the law degree including how to use social media to find required law books cheaply, making useful contacts during the degree, spreading out revision (insead of trying to do it all at once) and volunteering for useful projects (which will look good on the eventual CV).

    Last updated November 5th 2015.
    The Law Society has compiled a pro bono toolkit for law firms

  • The Law Society actively promotes Pro Bono work and it has now compiled a Solicitors' pro bono toolkit to support and encourage the provision of Pro Bono legal services in a more organised, and consistent, way than in the past. This should help firms manage the level of their pro bono commitment, track it, record it and (ultimately) help them to meet the needs of their local communities. The tool kit includes facts and statistics about pro bono work, a set of protocols to ensure a consistent approach, general advice, top tips, case studies and contact information for further assistance. The Law Society provides an annual Pro Bono Excellence award. The 14th annual National Pro Bono Week (NPBW), sponsored by the Law Society, the Bar Council and the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx), is currently taking place and the toolkit is a manifestation of the Law Society's commitment to the concept.

    Last updated November 4th 2015.
    LexisNexis Enterprise Solutions has opened a new "Centre of Excellence" in Leeds

  • LexisNexis Enterprise Solutions has opened a new Software Centre of Excellence in Leeds. This new R&D facility will be the UK hub of product development for its key products:
    * LexisOne, enterprise resource planning solution for law firms and
    * Lexis Visualfiles, legal workflow and case management system
    as well as other related software products. The company has also appointed David Espley as the UK Technology Director where he will join Andy Sparkes, General Manager. The Centre of Excellence will accommodate the 50 percent growth in staff this year planned for these products, serve as the company's European customer support hub and still have capacity for future growth. See more on the LexisNexis site here.

    Last updated November 3rd 2015.
    The International Federation of Computer Law Associations (IFCLA) announce June 2016 dates

  • IFCLA Conference 2016 is to be held on 9th and 10th June at the Institution of Engineering and Technology, Savoy Place, London. The event is to be hosted and organised by the Society for Computers and Law (SCL). As the IFCLA site says "IT law is global. IT lawyers, almost uniquely, have to master local law and yet look beyond their borders. Whether your focus is on outsourcing, the Internet, apps, cryptocurrencies, data protection, Big Data, the Internet of Things, gaming or any of the myriad of other fields affected by IT law, compliance in one jurisdiction gives no security – you have to think globally." The IFCLA was founded in December 1986 at an international meeting in Brussels and so the meeting next year will be in its 20th anniversary year.

    Last updated October 30th 2015.
    Happy Birthday to the UK Human Rights Blog - 5 years of dedicated work

  • UK Human Rights Blog from 1 Crown Office Row has been going for (just over) 5 years and there have been 2,245 posts, 4.7 million hits, 6,258 comments and over 13,000 email subscribers (many more on Facebook and Twitter). The cases are taken from domestic courts and the Strasbourg court involving human rights points that demonstrate the impact of the European Convention on domestic law and the blog also explores the practical impact of these cases for practitioners. The UKHRB has become a key source of human rights information in the UK and also across the world. Particular thanks to Adam Wagner (who started it) and also to Angus McCullough QC, Rosalind English, David Hart QC and Martin Downs.

    Last updated October 25th 2015.
    Peter Garsden wins Law Society award for Solicitor of the Year

  • QualitySolicitors Abney Garsden's founding partner Peter Garsden has been awarded "Solicitor of the Year - Private Practice" in the Law Society's Excellence Awards 2015. Peter Garsden leads one of the largest abuse departments in the country, giving vulnerable people a voice in abuse cases involving children and the elderly. The firm is based in Cheadle Hulme, Stockport, but takes on cases, and leads campaigns, across the UK and Ireland. The firm has a dedicated Abuse Website. Peter acts for some of the most disadvantaged members of society and is president of the Association of Child Abuse Lawyers, which he helped to establish in 1998. I have known and admired Peter's work for 20 years - he was campaigning in this difficult legal area long before it became "fashionable". Congratulations Peter, for the much deserved recognition.

    Last updated October 25th 2015.
    Eurocases is a new service to provide access to different nations' law as it relates to EU law

  • EuroCases is a multilingual web-based legal informational service providing access to case law of the leading jurisdictions in Europe related to the application of European Union law. It was developed and is continuously updated by the leading Bulgarian legal information provider APIS Europe JSC. EuroCases builds upon the achievements of the EUCases project, supported by the European Commission under the 7th Framework Programme for research and innovation of the European Union. It addresses the needs of lawyers, judges, in-house legal counsel and legal advisers whose professional activities are closely connected to the application of the EU law. They can access national case law from other Member States, whereby national courts apply both national and European law as well as principles developed by the Court of Justice of the EU. EuroCases also offers annotations from experienced editors on recent judgments with EU relevance, such as the recent ruling from the ECJ invalidating the Safe Harbor Agreement. Summaries of the most important cases are drafted in the language of the case and translated in English.

    Last updated October 23rd 2015.
    Law Society appoints 10 "Ambassadors" for a new group "Solicitors for Social Mobility"

  • The Law Society's Campaign aims to highlight how the solicitors' profession is made up of accomplished and talented individuals from all walks of life, and how many will have experienced and overcome socio-economic hurdles in pursuit of their career ambitions and professional success. They have selected 10 solicitor ambassadors to share their experience of entering the profession, including the challenges they faced and how they overcame them. Reflecting on their career path, each ambassador provides practical tips and advice on pursuing a career in law, providing inspiration and valuable insight for students considering a career in law.

    Last updated October 22nd 2015.
    Hotdocs has a new partner which enables it to expand into the Balkans.

  • HotDocs has announced a new partnership with Serbia-based software solutions company Micro-BS. Founded in 1993, Micro-BS implements software solutions across a number of sectors including legal, food and drink and government. Micro-BS can now implement HotDocs solutions across Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Montenegro and Macedonia. HotDocs is the worldwide market leading provider of automated document generation software, with customers in 42 different countries and a user-base, globally, that exceeds one million.

    Last updated October 21st 2015.
    BAILII provides access to Historic Scottish Law Reports.

  • British and Irish Legal Information Institute(BAILII) have been making good progress in loading the data supplied by the Scottish Council of Law Reporting (SCLR) to widen access to historic law reports. Scottish Appeal Cases and the Jury Court Cases have been added in the past few weeks. There are three volumes of Scottish Appeal Cases still to be added. See details of the Historic Scottish Law Reports on the BAILII site.

    Last updated October 15th 2015.
    Eurocases is a new service to provide access to different nations' law as it relates to EU law

  • EuroCases is a multilingual web-based legal informational service providing access to case law of the leading jurisdictions in Europe related to the application of European Union law. It was developed and is continuously updated by the leading Bulgarian legal information provider APIS Europe JSC. EuroCases builds upon the achievements of the EUCases project, supported by the European Commission under the 7th Framework Programme for research and innovation of the European Union. It addresses the needs of lawyers, judges, in-house legal counsel and legal advisers whose professional activities are closely connected to the application of the EU law. They can access national case law from other Member States, whereby national courts apply both national and European law as well as principles developed by the Court of Justice of the EU. EuroCases also offers annotations from experienced editors on recent judgments with EU relevance, such as the recent ruling from the ECJ invalidating the Safe Harbor Agreement. Summaries of the most important cases are drafted in the language of the case and translated in English.

    Last updated October 13th 2015.
    New comparison website for law firms set to launch in March next year

  • Law Society Gazette reports that a new comparison website for law firms is set to launch in March next year backed by millions of pounds from two private equity investors. It will charge a flat fee to the firms receiving the work. It will aim to match legal service providers with customers' exact requirements based on a range of criteria including particular expertise, services and geographic location.
    My thoughts? I do not see how quality of service, reputation, personal service and even results (in work where it matters "who wins") can be taken into account in comparison sites for legal work. There are a large number of referral, comparison and marketing sites already in existence (they are not always easy to tell apart) but none of them have really scooped the supposed market. Some of these are serious, well financed and experienced companies. What will be different this time? See my web pages Referral and marketing panels and Price and Service Comparison Sites.

    Last updated October 12th 2015.
    Free Seminar on Cyber Essentials for law firms on 21st October, from DPS and BSI

  • Cyber Essentials is the topic of a free seminar to be provided by legal software expert DPS and BSI (the British Standards Institution). The seminar, designed for legal practitioners, is completely free and is to be held at the IBM Client Centre in London on 21st October. It will cover the latest information about cyber security threats, issues and solutions concerning legal businesses The QBE Insurance Group, one of the world’s top 20 general insurance and reinsurance companies, will cover the topic of cyber insurance. You can book for this seminar on the DPS site, as above.

    Last updated October 7th 2015.
    New site created to link available lawyers with needs for representation

  • AvailableLawyers provides a way for lawyers to show their availability for court and tribunal representation in particular locations and for those needing representation to find them. Every court in England & Wales, and every field of law, is covered and major tribunals are also included. The site is for the use of all lawyers and legal staff. The site does not take any type of advertising, so impartiality is maintained.

    Last updated October 7th 2015.
    ICLR have provided an Anniversary Edition of the Law Reports (after 150 years)

  • ICLR has been providing case reports for 150 years. To celebrate this, they have put together a special Anniversary Edition of the Law Reports which includes the 15 top cases voted for by readers together with additional commentary and introduction essays. They have divided their history into five periods, and allowed a month for voting to take place from each period. The results and commentary from all the periods is available here.
    Happy Birthday ICLR!

    Last updated October 5th 2015.
    Help for law students from lawbore

  • lawbore from Emily Allbon of City University Law School, have put together a new A-Z video guide to starting a law course (only 13 minutes) and there is lots of other good stuff on their site too including Topic-themed guides to the legal web and Multimedia law tutorials & features.

    logo saying NEW Internet Newsletter for Lawyers, new issue - Free to view online!
  • Judith Townend of IALS asks whether ODR can deliver better access to justice
  • Shireen Smith of Azrights explains how to successfully manage your IP assets
  • Anneli Sarkanen of Fieldfisher describes how to get the best out of GOV.UK
  • Stephen Mason provides an introduction to eDisclosure and eSignatures
  • Delia Venables describes the most important resources for free case law online
  • Joe Reevy of Words4Business gives his favourite free digital marketing tools
  • Alex Heshmaty of Legal Words explains the Deep Web and the Dark Web
  • Newsletter Features: David Thomas of AlphaBiolabs describes next day DNA testing
  • Darren Gower provides a Case study: AVRillo conveyancers choose Proclaim PMS from Eclipse
  • Last updated September 23rd 2015.
    New employment resource for Commercial and Employment Law

  • Duggan Press has been established by Michael Duggan QC to publish high quality practitioners' Textbooks in the field of Law and Human Resources. There is also a case updater which refers to the cases, both reported and unreported, on an A-Z basis, making it easy to see what cases have been decided in a particular field and where the cases have been reported. This is free for 2015 but will require a subscription from 2016. There is a also a series of very detailed briefings from Michael Duggan on recent cases of significance provided without charge.

    Last updated September 10th 2015.
    New Law Society Guidance on how to comply with the EU Directive on Consumer ADR

  • The Law Society has changed its advice for firms on compliance with UK regulations which transpose the EU Directive on consumer alternative dispute resolution (ADR Directive). This is in response to the unexpected withdrawal of the Legal Ombudsman's (LeO) application to the Legal Services Board (LSB) to become certified as an ADR approved body for the purposes of the ADR Directive. Although the Legal Ombudsman has withdrawn its application, solicitors must still comply with the government regulations. New requirements will apply from 1 October 2015 in relation to the information solicitors are required to provide to clients at the end of a solicitor's internal complaints process.

    Last updated September 9th 2015.
    Bar Council announces the first ever "Pupillage Fair" for 21st November

  • The Bar Council's "Pupillage Fair" will take place on November 21st, the first ever event of its type.
    The day will provide a key opportunity for any student looking for a career at the Bar to meet and engage with chambers, other pupillage providers and course providers. There will also be an opportunity to learn about learn about the Bar Council's online application system for pupillage and to speak to representatives from different Specialist Bar Associations. Pupillage providers have to pay a fee, but I could not see any reference to the potential barristers having to pay anything.

    Last updated September 8th 2015.
    Accident Solicitors Direct provide a particularly good advice centre

  • Accident Solicitors Direct (ASD) of Sheffield have set up a very extensive Advice Centre. The site covers general personal injury (with detailed descriptions of many types of injury), road traffic accidents, accidents at work and industrial disease. The site provides good information which does not talk down to the viewer.

    Last updated September 7th 2015.
    Legal Software Suppliers Association (LSSA) is set to launch a free conveyancing portal

  • The Legal Software Suppliers Association is a very important body in the legal software world, with all the main legal suppliers as members and a very coherent and co-operative approach. It sets the standards and the framework for legal software in the UK. Now, it has developed a free conveyancing portal (called Free2Convey). It has been developed by the group specifically to integrate with the members' conveyancing software. This is a very important develoment since it will provide an alternative to Veyo and Hoowla. The aim of all these conveyancing portals is to provide the overall structure for a conveyancing transaction, linking all the relevant parties - individuals, solicitors, Land Registry and so on - in a simple overall "view" of the transaction. The problem with any such portal is that all the parties have to "buy into it" - if that is not the case, the overall picture cannot be presented. Since the LSSA software, due to be launched at the end of September, will be provided free to users of the key software systems, there should be no barrier to everyone being part of it. More on this story from Legalfutures at here.

    Last updated September 3rd 2015.
    Legal DNA Services go super-fast (next day results)

  • DNA testing: the fastest route to the truth provides a description of the new next-day service of Legal DNA testing for solicitors, courts and local authorities from AlphaBiolabs. They are also introducing new lower cost prices as DNA testing services for legal reasons are becoming more efficient than ever before. There is also free sample collection from various walk-in centres.
    This article is a Newsletter Feature in the Internet Newsletter for Lawyers

    Last updated September 2nd 2015.
    Co-op launches new "fixed price" services

  • The Co-operative legal site is now headed "The Fee We Quote is the Fee You Pay. When we have provided a written quote for the agreed work, that price will not change." The website specifies fixed fees and Solicitor hourly fees for services such as Probate, Making a Will & Family Law, where the client wishes.

    Last updated August 31st 2015.
    New section for special offers

  • Hoowla are offering a free AML check with each case run through their conveyancing software. Each AML check usually costs £3.70. Hoowla operates a cost per case charging model (with no setup fees or minimum term contract) where the average cost of a conveyancing case is £14 so this works out at approx 20% saving per conveyancing case (for customers using their software). Email Tom O'Brien for more details.

  • TOWK Digital, a brand new web agency led by SEO expert Daniel Kidd, is offering half price web redesign to provide law firms with a mobile site. This is a special offer to launch his firm, but it is only available during September. Prices start at the special rate of £300. Email - Daniel Kidd to discuss.

    Note from Delia - if you have a special offer for individuals needing legal advice, or for law firms, relating to services, and if I already know you, tell me about it and I will put up an entry here and tweet about it. No charge - this is a service to my viewers. However, I obviously cannot guarantee anything myself! Your arrangement is made directly with the supplier.

    Last updated August 21st 2015.
    Free WLR Daily Case Summaries and interesting content from ICLR
    The Incorporated Council of Law Reporting for England and Wales (ICLR) is the official publisher of The Law Reports and a number of other series including the Weekly Law Reports, all of which are available online. ICLR publishes free WLR Daily case summaries of all cases which it plans to report in full in any of its subscriber series. You can search for any case summarised as a WLR Daily from 2009 onward here (take the case summaries option) and you can also link to it from the free transcript on BAILII. There is also a case name/citation search for any law report published by ICLR since its formation in 1865, with an option to buy a court-ready PDF for just £12. The website has recently been updated to include a lot of new information about law reports and how to use them, eg What is a law report? and User tips (from its blog).

    For more (free) sources of case law, see my page Free Case Law Resources, recently updated. If I have anything wrong or if I am missing useful resources, please let me know. I would really appreciate it. Email me at

    Last updated August 20th 2015.
    Legal experts discuss topical issues in this new podcast series from Oxford University Press

  • Law Vox is a series of podcasts involving talks with legal experts from a wide variety of subject areas who discuss their work.
    - Mary Bosworth talks about immigration detention
    - Jeremy Phillips talks about intellectual property law
    - Charles Proctor talks about international banking law
    - Christopher Kuner talks about data privacy law
    - Tom Cross and Hafsah Masood talk about Religious Freedoms and Religious rights
    - Frank Wijckmans talk about competition law
    - Kenneth Hamer talks about professional conduct cases.
    Coming soon:
    - Nigel Blackaby and Constantine Partasides talk about international arbitration
    - Nikoletta Kleftouri talks about deposit protection and bank resolution
    - Loukas Mistelis talks about international arbitration.
    All the podcasts are completely free to listen to - good for using time otherwise "wasted" in car journeys, train journeys, running, washing up....

    Last updated August 5th 2015.
    DPS sets up a sister company in Sri Lanka to find, and make use of, new software talent

  • DPS now has 10 full time web developers in the new SRI Lanka company engaged in developing new projects that are at the cutting edge of legal software development. DPS believe that the market is moving to a full software-as-a-service model and that the key to success is to continue to develop products specifically built for this model, for example with new levels and types of security, rather than just adapting current software to run online. DPS have been providing innovative legal software for 30 years - I can vouch for this since I have known them for most of this time and they have always been a major contender in the legal market. They are now apparently the largest legal cloud provider on the market, hosting over 140 legal businesses across the UK. See more here.

    Note - for earlier items from 2015, please see here.

    Do you want to go further back? See

    New from 2015 (earlier), New from 2014, New from 2013, New from 2012, New from 2011, New from 2010, New from 2009 and New from 2008.

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