The Professional Negligence Pre-Action Protocol (the Protocol) is designed to provide a framework for the early exchange of information between a professional negligence claimant and a professional negligence defendant.
Such protocols are required in the majority of professional negligence cases. For example, the Protocol applies when claiming against solicitors, barristers, lawyers, surveyors and tax advisers. It is also applicable in cases of alleged negligence and breach of contract or fiduciary duty (breach of trust).
In fact, first-instance following of the Protocol is considered compulsory in the majority of claims, and a court is likely to take an unfavourable view of any party who has chosen not to do so.
In cases involving claims against construction professionals, architects or engineers – the Construction and Engineering Disputes Pre-Action Protocol is the appropriate procedure.
Where a claimant may be time-barred from proceeding with a claim because of the time constraints involved in a pre-action protocol, the court allows them to make an application without the appropriate procedure having been followed..
The protocol came into force in 2001 in an attempt to reduce the need for court litigation. The Protocol aims to produce a dialogue between the parties which could help them come to mutual agreement regarding a settlement without the need for a formal hearing. The Courts’ Practice Direction on Pre-Action Conduct states that commencing formal “proceedings should usually be a step of last resort”.
31st January 2017
Our client, a property developer was in the process of obtaining a property. The case involved two law firms that acted for the buyer & seller. After the transaction was complete, the client discovered that the seller had committed identity fraud and lost a considerable amount of money. Issues included breach of warranty of authority and breach of trust on the part of the solicitors who acted on behalf of the fraudster; the scope of the duty of care of the firm acting on behalf of our clients and whether the clients’ consequential loss of profit was recoverable at law. Continue reading »
Our client divorced with his wife and asked his former solicitors to take on his case. After completing procedures, he realised that the law firm had not protected his interests & assets. Continue reading »
Our client’s claim arose out of the failings of her former solicitors to deal with her divorce. This included the dissipation of assets held by the husband in Hong Kong by way of freezing orders. The claim focused on conflicting evidence between the client and husbands solicitor. Continue reading »
Our client had a previous claim with another law firm in relation to his property being undervalued when sold. Unfortunately our client received poor advice from the previous law firm which resulted in him loosing the initial claim against the mortgagee and valuer. Continue reading »
1st January 2017
Our client needed advice regarding an Under-Lease, and so they approached a firm about their issue. However, our client soon realised that the firm had given incorrect advice. He decided to contact Healys in order to make a claim against the law firm for failure to advise properly in relation to the purchase of an under-lease, the terms of that under lease, the status of the head lessee and rental payment terms. Continue reading »
25th January 2018
David Bailey, Partner in the Dispute Resolution team, discusses the question in the Times Newspaper.
Mediation is generally a cost-effective alternative way to secure dispute resolution. These days, typically in commercial cases, parties arrive legally tooled up with a full set of solicitors, barristers and experts, much as they would for a trial, and act accordingly. Continue reading »