Articles



Editorial: Local justice – all smokies and mirrors?

In the 1970s Ernst Schumacher, an unlikely named British Coal economist, wrote his famous work Small is Beautiful bequeathing the decade a title that became a mantra, but which arguably made little impact on society. Today, in a reaction to globalisation boosted by Covid lockdowns, a new slogan has appeared. 'Local living' is à la mode as city breaks on Ryanair become a distant memory and we rediscover the weekly arrival of the local fish van with its opportunity to blether to the neighbours.

Published 20 October 2020

David Lorimer: A double-edged shield

Lord Glennie’s opinion in the recent ‘CH’ appeal ([2020] HCJAC 43) highlights a conflict of judicial thinking, and legal opinion in general, with respect to the Scottish rape shield. Could it be that the real issue is a fundamental lack of trust in the ability of a jury to reach a fair conclusion in such cases? In his customary manner, David Lorimer takes a carefully considered look at the issue.

Published 16 October 2020

Audrey Ferrie: An almighty hangover for the licensed trade

The 16-day lockdown across the central belt has ushered in an almighty hangover for drinkers, diners and licensed trade operators alike, writes Audrey Ferrie.

Published 16 October 2020

Chris Plews: Let’s get down to business

In the UK around 95 per cent of Britain’s 4.9 million private businesses employ less than 10 people. While 75 per cent are sole proprietors, another 20 per cent have up to only nine employees.

Published 14 October 2020

Benjamin Bestgen: Taxation

Leo Mattersdorf, friend and accountant of Albert Einstein, claimed the great physicist once said to him during a meal that "the hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax". Benjamin Bestgen this week takes a look at this marmite subject. See last week's jurisprudential primer here.

Published 14 October 2020

Graeme MacLeod: No absolute right to privacy on messaging platforms

Graeme MacLeod comments on a recent Inner House judgment in which police officers in a WhatsApp group lost an appeal against a decision to investigate them.

Published 12 October 2020

Lawyer of the Month: Matthew McGovern

Much has been said about the plight of criminal defence lawyers in recent years, from the inadequacy of legal aid fees to the impracticality of working hours. Almost all of it has been from the point of view of practitioners with decades of experience in the sector, though.

Published 12 October 2020

Robert More: 48 hours in the life of a defence solicitor

Solicitor advocate Robert More recounts two days in the life of a defence lawyer, highlighting the dire straits in which practitioners find themselves. The pleas of the profession continue to fall on deaf ears as the Scottish government and, in particular, Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf, do nothing.

Published 9 October 2020

Martin Devine: Glasgow’s ambitious growth plans get underway

Glasgow has raced out of the starting blocks in its bid to double the size of its city centre population over the next 15 years to 40,000, writes Martin Devine.

Published 9 October 2020

Covid: Lack of legal certainty is now endemic

Niall McCluskey and Christian McNeill take a critical look at the latest coronavirus rules.

Published 8 October 2020

The Margaret Taylor interview: Fiona McAllister on hitting the right note at Channel 4

After she left her role at Burness Paull to join London media practice Simkins, Fiona McAllister – now a lawyer at Channel 4 – began looking for an extra-curricular activity that would allow her to contribute to society while at the same time not being too closely related to her day job. Law Rocks provided just the answer.

Published 8 October 2020

Jodi Gordon: Behind the mask

Social media has become enshrined in society as a means to share and display information about our lives. With the popularity around various social media platforms showing no sign of stopping, the amount of information available online will be ever-increasing.

Published 7 October 2020

Benjamin Bestgen: Power and public discourse (Free Speech III)

In the third of his articles on free speech, Benjamin Bestgen stresses that freedom of expression must be examined in context. See his last piece here.

Published 7 October 2020

Chris Gotts: More Scots companies should consider AIM listing

Burness Paull's Chris Gotts, lead legal adviser on the Calnex IPO, discusses why more growing businesses in Scotland should follow suit. 

Published 6 October 2020

Blair Nimmo: The key to defusing landlord-occupier tension

Blair Nimmo, head of restructuring at KPMG in Scotland, discusses landlord-occupier tensions during the coronavirus pandemic.

Published 6 October 2020