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Cautionary tales: it takes all sorts

Richard Barr recalls some defining moments from 30 years in practice including experiecnes with overly appreciative, apologetic and furious clients

12 May 2014

We had been acting for a small building company that was being sued over building work carried out many years earlier. Defeat would have meant ruin for the two surviving directors.

Against us, we had one of the largest and most powerful firms of solicitors in London. However, they didn’t do their homework as thoroughly as we did and didn’t check the company’s register: the company had not been formed when the work was done.

We could not tell them that because they would have sued the individual clients personally.

It was only on the day of the trial that we told them that the company had not built the properties. It was fun to watch all the other side’s barristers flapping around like seagulls. We settled the case on terms that were far more favourable than anyone would ever have dared hope for.

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