Capita is to enter into the legal market through the acquisition of volume outfit Optima Legal Services, three years after the SRA ordered the firm to sever its relationship with the outsourcing giant.

The SRA is yet to approve the planned deal and an ABS application  was filed on Friday. As part of the deal Capita will also acquire Optima subsidiary Cost Advocates.

Under the plans staff from Optima’s offices in Glasgow, Bradford and Newcastle will transfer to Capita Legal Services, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Capita.

Recommind, the leader in unstructured data management, analysis and governance technology, announced today that it is sponsoring the ‘legal expertise: dispute resolution’ category at this year’s FT Innovative Lawyers Awards. Jointly run by the Financial Times and specialist legal research company RSG Consulting, the awards are regarded by many as the best researched in the legal industry.

Hogan Lovells is understood to be losing its entire Berlin office to Morrison Foerster (MoFo), marking the most recent raid on its technology and media team.

Nine partners including leading M&A lawyer and BskyB adviser Christoph Wagner, are understood to be launching MoFo’s new Berlin team, forcing the German Hogan Lovells office to close.

According to the Hogan Lovells, Wagner’s departure had been pre-planned, but the remaining eight-partner team had signalled their commitment to stay at the firm in recent months.

Naivety and over-dominant senior partners most frequent causes of financial failure

Five per cent of firms contacted as part of the Solicitors regulation Authority's financial stability programme have shown indicators serious enough to warrant action, it has emerged, including, in one case, a shortage of more than £500,000.

Of these 2,000 firms contacted as part of the programme, five per cent required "immediate and in-depth engagement", Samantha Barrass (pictured) said after today's SRA Regulatory Risk Committee meeting.

Clyde & Co increased its corporate turnover by a third during 2012/13, with the group generating revenues of £70.7m over the financial year.

It is significant growth for the firm, which has traditionally placed emphasis on its disputes practice, which generated revenues of £238m. The rapid growth of the corporate group means that the insurance firm has replaced Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) as one of the top 15 corporate practices in The Lawyer UK 200.

An alternative business structure (ABS) with access to clients with assets of more than £13bn has been launched by the Country Gentlemen’s Association (CGA), whose members who are mainly landowners, farmers, and retired military personnel.

The Solicitors Regulation Authority has licensed it to operate CGA Legal Services from 1 November and has granted a waiver to the ABS to be connected with CGA Financial & Investments Limited, despite that arm being an appointed representative of a non-independent financial adviser – wealth manager St James’s Place.

Scotland’s largest law firm conveyancer has thundered into the separate representation debate, critiquing the move as “politically motivated, opportunistic, regressive” and “anti-competitive”, and a “calamity” for solicitors and consumers.

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) now has 1,200 law firms on its financial stability watchlist, with more likely to join it shortly, it has emerged.

It follows the recent request for financial data from 1,500 practices that work in areas experiencing particular economic pressures, such as personal injury or legal aid, as well as around 500 ‘high impact’ firms – those whose failure would have a significant impact.

Firm brings in M&C Saatchi to create prime-time ads

Slater and Gordon has launched a £1m television campaign in a bid to become "a household name".

"The main objective is for us to increase awareness of Slater & Gordon as a brand and communicate the message to the consumer that we provide access to quality legal services for everyday people," said Slater and Gordon's UK head of marketing Kalle Amanatides.

"This advert is a major step towards us becoming a household name," she said.

Capita, the outsourcing giant that yesterday announced plans to buy a law firm, remains on the acquisition trail and is also looking for a top-20 law firm to partner with, Legal Futures can report.

It struck a deal to buy volume firm Optima Legal Services, subject to receiving an alternative business structure (ABS) licence from the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).

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