Posts

Jacy Whittaker Joins Leaders in Law as the Exclusive Commercial Litigation Law Member in the Bahamas

Leaders in Law, the leading platform in its field, is delighted to welcome Jacy Whittaker as our exclusively recommended & endorsed Commercial Litigation Law expert in the Bahamas. Jacy’s office is located in Freeport.

For Jacy Whittaker, the key to winning cases is being abundantly overprepared. As an attorney, Jacy gears up for war on everything. The litigator never walks into a courtroom without more research, more evidence, and more potential angles than warranted. This over-preparation allows him to think on his feet, building confidence—and the court’s regard—through each winning application, writ, submission, and hearing. Rather than being exhausted by sheer volume, the youthful lawyer becomes even more invigorated. After all, he lives to argue—and win.

Jacy got his start in 2000, working as a legal assistant for Frederick R.M. Smith, QC, a legendary attorney in the Bahamas. Mr. Smith had been intrigued by a brand of intelligence that has since served Jacy well in the courtroom. Even then, a talent analysis showed Jacy’s strengths as a future litigator.

If you require any assistance in this area, please use the contact details provided in Jacy’s profile below or contact us at info@leaders-in-law.com & we will put you in touch.

Fotini Kardiopoulis joins Leaders in Law as the exclusive Anti-Counterfeiting Law member in Greece

Leaders in Law, the leading platform in its field, is delighted to welcome Fotini Kardiopoulis as our exclusively recommended & endorsed Anti-Counterfeiting Law expert in Greece. Fotini’s office is located in Athens.

Fotini Kardiopoulis, partner and co-founder of Dr Helen G Papaconstantinou and Partners (HP&P), heads the firm’s anti-counterfeiting and anti-piracy department. She holds a law degree from the University of Athens with first-class honours and an LLM from the London School of Economics and Political Science. She joined the Athens Bar in 1985 and has been admitted to practice before the Greek Supreme Court and the Council of State. She has also been a lecturer for 10 years at the Police Academy.

Since 1998 she has been dealing with a broad range of IP matters with an emphasis on trademarks, anti-counterfeiting/anti-piracy, plant breeder’s rights, contract drafting and reviewing and alternative dispute resolution. She has extensive experience in devising and implementing anti-counterfeiting programs, filing and administering customs actions, IP litigation, monitoring and enforcing IP rights online and advising on domain name disputes, consulting on license & franchise agreements and on copyright issues.  In addition, she has conducted numerous significant seizures/raids, including preparatory investigations concerning various sectors, such as apparel, electric/electronic goods, toys, watchmaking, alcohol and tobacco/cigarettes, often involving civil and criminal action in addition to customs procedures.

If you require any assistance in this area, please use the contact details provided in Fotini’s profile below or contact us at info@leaders-in-law.com & we will put you in touch.

Francis Xavier joins Leaders in Law as the exclusive International Arbitration Law member in Singapore

Leaders in Law, the leading platform in its field, is delighted to welcome Francis Xavier as our exclusively recommended & endorsed International Arbitration Law expert in Singapore. 

Francis is Regional Head, Disputes Practices of Rajah & Tann and was appointed Senior Counsel in January 2009. He practises in the areas of international and treaty arbitration and cross-border commercial litigation.

He specialises in corporate and commercial disputes especially in the areas of corporate, banking, property and financial and investment related claims. He also specialises in aviation law and advised in the class-action suit resulting from the crash of the SilkAir flight in Indonesia in 1997 and the Taiwan SIA crash.

If you require any assistance in this area, please use the contact details provided in Francis’ profile below or contact us at info@leaders-in-law.com & we will put you in touch.

Harikrishnan Ravindran joins Leaders in Law as the exclusive Commercial Law member in the UAE

Leaders in Law, the leading platform in its field, is delighted to welcome Harikrishnan Ravindran as our exclusively recommended & endorsed Commercial Law expert in the UAE. Harikrishnan’s office is located in Dubai.

Harikrishnan is a legal consultant with Lutfi & Co since June 2009.  His background prior to joining Lutfi & Co was in counsel practice. Harikrishnan’s expertise and practice focus are in the areas of corporate and commercial law as well as commercial dispute resolution.

He is a key member of both the transactional and the dispute resolution teams.  This experience has assisted him in developing a deeper understanding of the practical implications of specific contractual terms in the context of potential dispute resolution proceedings.  He has considerable expertise and experience in International Trade law particularly pertaining to dispute resolution proceedings.

If you require any assistance in this area, please use the contact details provided in Harikrishnan’s profile below or contact us at info@leaders-in-law.com & we will put you in touch.

Nils T. F. Schmid joins Leaders in Law as the exclusive Mechanical Engineering member in Germany

Leaders in Law, the leading platform in its field, is delighted to welcome Nils T. F. Schmid as our exclusively recommended & endorsed Mechanical Engineering expert in Germany. Nils’s office is located in Munich.

Nils T.F. Schmid specializes in traditional mechanical engineering, his particular interest being in the areas of motor vehicles, tool engineering, process engineering, textile technologies, and medical technology. For his clients, especially medium-sized companies in Germany/Europe and Asian and American big corporations, he develops both German and global patent strategies and sees to their implementation with regard to the building up and management of patent and design patent portfolios.

Other key areas of his work include infringement and nullity disputes regarding patents, utility models, and designs, and the establishment and counseling of in house IP departments, including advising on employee inventor law.

If you require any assistance in this area, please use the contact details provided in Nils’s profile below or contact us at info@leaders-in-law.com & we will put you in touch.

Environmental Laws and Regulations Affecting US Offshore Wind

In a new edition of Pratt’s Energy Law Report, White & Case global environment & climate change partner Seth Kerschner and associate Brittany Curcuru provide an overview of the federal environmental regulations that proponents of offshore wind may have to navigate to get projects approved, built, launched—and eventually, decommissioned.

The team said, “The Biden administration has signaled strong support for renewables, including wind. The Interior, Energy and Commerce departments announced a shared goal to deploy at least 30 gigawatts (GWs) of offshore wind in the United States by 2030. As part of that resolution, BOEM intends to hold new lease sales and finalize the review of at least 16 Construction and Operations Plans for wind development, which could bring more than 19 GWs of wind capacity online by 2025.”

See the full article here

Press contact
For more information please speak to your local media contact.

Personal insolvency verses matrimonial law

By Ian Defty, partner at Begbies Traynor and insolvency advisor at Legal Futures Associate  Integrated Dispute Resolution.

It is fair to say that there has, for many years, been a “difference of opinion” between the law governing personal insolvency and matrimonial law with each “side” believing that they are right and should take precedence.

The principal, sometimes conflicting, legislation is covered in the Insolvency Act 1986 and the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973. However, the differing courts can and will give wide discretion when determining whether and how a married couple’s assets are to be divided.

In accordance with the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 there is an expectation that assets accrued during the marriage should be regarded as jointly owned between the spouses and normally be divided equally between the parties, whereas assets held by one spouse or the other before the marriage should be left to that party unless there is good reason to divide them. The matrimonial home is usually always considered as a matrimonial asset to which the sharing principle applies.

In personal insolvency the overriding principle is to see that the creditors as a whole get dealt with fairly and in accordance with insolvency law which may often seem to go against matrimonial law which seeks to ensure that a spouse and maybe children are dealt with first and foremost.

In general terms, all property belonging to or vested in the bankrupt at the commencement of the bankruptcy forms part of the bankruptcy estate and will vest automatically in the trustee in bankruptcy immediately upon their appointment. On the face of it, this may appear unhelpful to the bankrupt’s spouse, especially if they are divorcing.

Section 306 of the Insolvency Act 1986 sets out that the bankrupt’s estate shall vest in the trustee immediately on their appointment taking effect or, in the case of the official receiver, on his becoming trustee.

The Insolvency Act 1986 goes on to set out the relevant insolvency legislation regarding what defines a bankrupt’s affairs (S.283) and the restrictions on dispositions of property (S.284).

Section 283 defines a bankrupt’s estate as;-

  • all property belonging to or vested in the bankrupt at the commencement of the bankruptcy, and
  • any property which by virtue of any of the following provisions of this Part is comprised in that estate or is treated as falling with the preceding paragraph.

Section 284 sets out the restrictions on dispositions of property as follows; –

  • Where a person is made bankrupt, any disposition of property made by that person in the period to which this section applies is void except to the extent that it is or was made with the consent of the court or is or was subsequently ratified by the court.
  • Subsection (1) applies to a payment (whether in cash or otherwise) as it applies to a disposition of property and, accordingly, where any payment is void by virtue of that subsection, the person paid shall hold the sum paid for the bankrupt as part of his estate.
  • This section applies to the period beginning with the day of the making of the bankruptcy application or (as the case may be) the presentation of the bankruptcy petition] and ending with the vesting, under Chapter IV of this Part, of the bankrupt’s estate in a trustee.
  • The preceding provisions of this section do not give a remedy against any person –
  1. in respect of any property or payment which he received before the commencement of the bankruptcy in good faith, for value and without notice that the bankruptcy application had been made or (as the case may be) that the bankruptcy] petition had been presented, or
  2. in respect of any interest in property which derives from an interest in respect of which there is, by virtue of this subsection, no remedy.
  • Where after the commencement of his bankruptcy the bankrupt has incurred a debt to a banker or other person by reason of the making of a payment which is void under this section, that debt is deemed for the purposes of any of this Group of Parts to have been incurred before the commencement of the bankruptcy unless —
  1. that banker or person had notice of the bankruptcy before the debt was incurred, or
  2. it is not reasonably practicable for the amount of the payment to be recovered from the person to whom it was made.
  • A disposition of property is void under this section notwithstanding that the property is not or, as the case may be, would not be comprised in the bankrupt’s estate; but nothing in this section affects any disposition made by a person of property held by him on trust for any other person.

If bankruptcy precedes an order made under the Matrimonial Causes Act the legal and practical outcome is straightforward and the assets vest in the trustee. Difficulties arise when the order under the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 precedes the bankruptcy. The impact of the making of a bankruptcy order on matrimonial proceedings will therefore depend on the point that the matrimonial proceedings have reached.

Where a person has been declared bankrupt (or a bankruptcy petition has been presented against the debtor) prior to the making of a financial remedy order under matrimonial law, the matrimonial court is restricted in the financial remedy order it can make. Generally speaking, the matrimonial court cannot make a property adjustment order as the bankrupt’s estate will have vested in the trustee under the Insolvency Act 1986.

In accordance with S.336 of the Insolvency Act 1986, where an application is made by the trustee to realise the matrimonial home after a year since the vesting of the bankrupt’s estate in the trustee, there is a presumption that the interests of creditors outweigh all other considerations that will include that of the spouse (and other family members such as children).

The transfer of an interest in the matrimonial home pursuant to a consent order made under s.24 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 constitutes a “disposition” for these purposes and is therefore void (Re Flint [1993]). This was reinforced in 1994 with Woodley v Woodley (No. 2) [1993] 2 FLR 477 by where the Court of Appeal held that the presentation of a bankruptcy petition is not a disposition for the purposes of s.37 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 and cannot be challenged as an attempt to avoid an order for matrimonial relief. Therefore, the correct way to attempt to challenge an allegation of a spouse using bankruptcy as a fraudulent device to defeat his/her divorcing spouse’s matrimonial claim ‘s claim is to seek for the bankruptcy order to be annulled under s 282(1)(a) by the court exercising insolvency jurisdiction. It is not open to a judge of the Family Court to use the Civil Procedure Rules to transfer insolvency proceedings to the Family Court be dealt with as part of the financial remedy proceedings, per Arif v Zar [2012] EWCA Civ 986.

A matrimonial property transfer order made after the presentation of the bankruptcy petition is a void disposition by the debtor for the purposes of s.284 of the Insolvency Act. In 2010 a matrimonial settlement by ex-spouses which had not been finalised by the time a creditor issued a bankruptcy petition against the husband was struck out by the court as it constituted a disposition of the spouse’s property, per Warwick v Yarwood [2010] EWHC 2272.

Greg Williams, a barrister at Coram Chambers, London, who specialises in matrimonial finance cases, said: “During the last decade, ultralow interest rates combined with a generally high rate of employment has meant that our day-to-day divorce cases rarely feature bankruptcy issues. That may be about to change: the impact of Covid 19 and Brexit is likely to be felt this year. If personal or household debts becomes unsustainable, practitioners and their clients need to be alert to potential insolvency issues. Assets which would otherwise form part of the matrimonial pot can be lost entirely to a successful bankruptcy petition. Or we may see an increase in applications from trustees in bankruptcy to sell family homes to the chagrin of the remaining spouse and children.”

For more information or to discuss an insolvency matter within matrimonial law please contact IDR on admin@integrated-dr.com or 0207 8465 600.

 

More US Law Firms Delaying Large-Scale Office Returns Amid Omicron Fears

Amid the emergence of the Omicron variant of coronavirus, an increasing number of law firms in the United States are delaying large-scale office returns and introducing other Covid-19 measures to protect employees. One large US firm has told employees to work from home, while another is now explicitly requiring Covid-19 booster shots for staff.

On Monday, several large US firms confirmed that they were delaying their return-to-office dates, including Willkie Farr & Gallagher, Cooley, and Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo.

According to an email seen by Reuters, Debevoise & Plimpton told its employees on Friday to work remotely until January 7. The firm had planned for its lawyers to begin a gradual return plan by January 10. However, in the email seen by Reuters, presiding partner Michael Blair said that the firm will wait until early next month to review whether or not the plan should still go ahead.

Like many businesses, recent months have seen law firms struggling with the question of when and how to bring staff back into offices, even on a part-time basis. Some firms had planned to make the return last summer, but the spread of the Delta variant saw such plans upended for many.

Markus Fell­ner joins Leaders in Law as the exclusive Banking & Finance Law member in Austria

Leaders in Law, the leading platform in its field, is delighted to welcome Markus Fell­ner as our exclusively recommended & endorsed Banking & Finance Law expert in Austria. Markus’ office is located in Vienna.

Markus Fellner is a founding partner at fwp and specialises in banking and finance, corporate and M&A, insolvency law and restructuring, and dispute resolution.

As a specialist speaker and author of specialist publications on banking & finance, company law, insolvency law as well as restructuring, Markus Fellner, with the support of his team, stands for exceptional quality, profound expertise and long-term experience. His clients include both domestic and international companies and financial institutions. The international character of the Austrian business law firm fwp is highlighted by regular cooperation with leading partner law firms in a network spanning all relevant jurisdictions.

If you require any assistance in this area, please use the contact details provided in Markus’ profile below or contact us at info@leaders-in-law.com & we will put you in touch.

Wang Zhengyang joins Leaders in Law as the exclusive Arbitration Law member in China

Leaders in Law, the leading platform in its field, is delighted to welcome Wang Zhengyang as our exclusively recommended & endorsed Arbitration Law expert in China. Wang’s office is located in Shanghai.

Mr. Wang Zhengyang specializes in the areas of litigation, arbitration, and foreign investment. He has profound knowledge of Chinese law and more than 30 years of legal practice experience, including 5 years in Court.

In the field of civil and commercial affairs, Mr. Wang has provided high-quality advisory services and litigation & arbitration legal services for many state-owned and private enterprises in the fields of finance, oil and gas, construction and real estate, manufacturing, logistics, and trading. In the criminal field, Mr. Wang has successfully defended many companies and individuals in major and complex criminal cases involving loan fraud, illegal business operation, contract fraud, and bribery.

Mr. Wang also actively provides criminal compliance training services for corporate customers, member companies of the chamber of commerce, member companies of the industry association, to help companies prevent criminal legal risks. Furthermore, Mr. Wang also specializes in foreign legal services. He has successfully defended foreign-funded enterprises and individuals involved in intellectual property infringement disputes, labour disputes, shareholder disputes, contract disputes, debt recovery disputes, illegal personal detention, contract fraud, illegal possession of drugs, etc.

If you require any assistance in this area, please use the contact details provided in Wang’s profile below or contact us at info@leaders-in-law.com & we will put you in touch.