Law firm becomes victim of identity theft, prime minister sues blogging site

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Canadian law firm becomes victim of identity theft... UK law firms ‘more diverse than general workforce’... US attorney warns of aggressive IP protection... and where in the world is a prime minister taking legal action over a blog readers’ comments?

Even law firms can be victims
A Canadian law firm has become a victim of identity theft after someone opposing one of their clients set up domain names similar to its own and used their logo on social media. The firm discovered what was happening last week, and claim the imposter is trying to mislead clients and others by passing off his advice and information as being from the genuine firm. Although it’s not possible to always secure domains and social media accounts for every variant of a firm’s name, it highlights the need to do as much as you can to prevent this kind of case. Read the full story.

Survey shows diversity in UK law firms
It’s not always the case globally, but in the UK a report by the Solicitors Regulation Authority says that the profession is more diverse than society in general. The survey was conducted throughout the profession with almost 10,000 law firms employing 200,000 people supplying data. The results showed that 12.9% of staff in law firms (including partners) are from ethnic backgrounds, compared to 12.4% for the UK workforce as a whole. As well as ethnicity, the report gave figures on gender, sexuality, age, disability and religion. Women make up almost a third of partners, over half of lawyers and over three quarters of staff. Read the full story.
US firms ‘aggressively’ pursuing IP claims
A US attorney has advised firms in South Korea to watch out for American firms talking tough (and often pre-emptive) action against foreign companies looking to enter the US market. Jeff Randall heads up the intellectual property litigation unit of law firm Paul Hastings, which has offices across the world, including Korea. Jeff was speaking about a case in which DuPont won damages of almost USD$1 billion against a Korean firm. The case has been appealed. Randall says that the in-house legal departments of US companies team up with the US Government to take action and that foreign companies need to take steps to be ready in case of a claim. Read the full story.
UK clamps down on crooked professionals
We’ve seen it in the movies; the dodgy lawyer whose clients are anything but lawful. It happens in real life too of course, but in the UK they are about to hit crooked professionals hard. In The Queen’s Speech tomorrow, where she sets out the government’s planned legislation, there will be a new offence announced – “participation in an organised crime group” – and will include those who write contracts for criminals. Pleading ignorance of a client’s unlawful activities will no longer be accepted as a defence and penalties could include up to 5 years in prison. Read the full story.
Prime minister sues bloggers
Politicians have to learn pretty quickly to take it on the chin, as the world of politics isn’t always the fairest place to be. It’s pretty unusual for a senior government figure to take legal action against a news website, but in Malaysia the prime minister is claiming defamation against an independent site – specifically the site’s readers’ comments. The media was largely state-controlled until the 90s and independent bloggers enjoy a fair amount of freedom. The initial court date is set for June 18th. Read the full story.
And the winner is….
Mourant Ozannes, based in the Cayman Islands has been named Best Offshore Law Firm at the 2014 Hedgeweek USA awards for the second year in a row. The awards are voted for by Hedgeweek readers. Partner Julian Fletcher called the awards a tribute to “the hard work and expertise of the entire team.” Read the full story.

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