Law Society of Scotland gets a new President, business as usual. JAMIE MILLAR, a partner with Edinburgh Law Firm Lindsays has taken over from Ian Smart as the new President of the Law Society of Scotland after what has been seen as one of the most problematic periods yet for the Scottish legal profession, who are facing everything from eventual regulatory reform to increased competition in the still-solicitor-monopolised legal services sector.
While the Law Society of Scotland have been kind enough to publicise the change of presidency by focussing on the usual self congratulatory messages, what Drumsheugh Gardens chose not to reveal was regulatory record, or the amount of client complaints made against the law firm of Mr Millar.
Lindsays bought up Borders law firm linked to Law Society-Penman scandal. Lindsays, who, on their website describe themselves as “ a highly-regarded Scottish law firm. We combine high levels of service with legal expertise to tailor the best possible outcomes and results for you, your business, or your family.” purchased a law firm based in Jedburgh, named Turnbull Simpson & Sturrock in early 2007 which were heavily involved in the maladministration of my late father’s estate by Borders solicitor Andrew Penman of Stormonth Darling Solicitors, Kelso, which used to be a partner firm to Turnbull Simpson & Sturrock until the Scotsman newspaper began reporting on the Law Society cover up of my complaint against Mr Penman.
The Law Society’s Philip Yelland personally handled complaints against Penman & Sturrock. As the Scotsman continued to report on the Law Society’s whitewash of the complaints against Mr Penman, Turnbull Simpson & Sturrock’s senior partner, Mr David Sturrock took over the administration of my late father’s estate, only to make the actions of Mr Penman and the accountant/executor Norman Howitt (still working as an accountant at JRW Group) much worse, resulting in several more years of financial damage & negligence which was carefully swept under the carpet by the Law Society of Scotland in the true cover up style we have all come to expect from lawyers investigating themselves.
Jedburgh based Turnbull, Simpson & Sturrock – Complaints of poor & negligent service to clients were whitewashed by Law Society of Scotland. Equally many other complaints made against Turnbull Simpson & Sturrock by locals in Jedburgh & the surrounding area received a similar whitewash treatment, but as with many Borders firms, they only continue to survive because locals have no one else to use when it comes to legal services, hence you can get a situation where one day, someone brings a large ornate gold mantle piece clock into a jewellers for valuation, allegedly owned by a solicitor, but which in reality was stolen from a house of a deceased client whose will was being handled by that very same solicitor who claimed to own it .. and nothing done about the incident (& many others) by the Law Society or the authorities, although in the case of the clock, it was apparently returned to the family after the conscientious jeweller told the relatives of the deceased … (details ring any bells ? – PC)
So, don't expect any changes at the Law Society of Scotland this coming year which might benefit consumers, clients of solicitors, or anyone seeking redress or justice against ‘crooked lawyers’ … its more a case of ‘business as usual, burn the client for as much as you can, and if you do anything bad we will let you get away with it' but you expected me to say that anyway, because its always the case with the Law Society … business as usual …
If you are in the Borders looking for legal services and want any recommendations, well .. I wouldn’t recommend any legal firms in Jedburgh – simply, you’d be much better off just opening your front door and letting the burglars walk into your house .. because you can expect the same treatment if you take on any of the town’s law firms as your legal representatives …
The Law Society of Scotland’s announcement of their latest President, Mr Jamie Millar :
Jamie Millar, a partner with Lindsays solicitors, has become the President of the Law Society of Scotland.
Mr Millar (61) has been vice-president since May 2009, and was the Society’s Treasurer for three years before that. He has been a member of the Council for six years and served as a member of a Client relations Committee for seven years from 1997.
A trainee with the then Tindal, Oatts and Rodger, Mr Millar qualified in 1973. He was a partner with the firm from 1975 to 1986. From 1986 to 2006 he was a partner at Bishops and from 2006 he was a partner at Brodies.
Jamie has over thirty years experience as a corporate lawyer specialising in acquistions/mergers, joint ventures, trade associations and corporate governance.
“The Legal Services Bill has been the major focus for the Society in the past year and will continue to be in the coming months as the Society looks at how it could regulate the new business models as well as supporting the profession during their introduction.
“The Society is continuing its modernisation programme to meet the profession’s needs now and into the future, and with that the profession continue to be consulted and asked for feedback as we develop services which will support them during this challenging time.
”Scotland’s solicitors play a major part in Scotland’s economy and I would like that to be recognised. The Society will continue to promote the profession to attract business to Scotland and enhance our economy.”
One of the key areas of work the Society is focusing on is the implementation of its review of education and training in 2010-2011.
Thursday 27 May
To sum up the latest President, his own quote seems appropriate : ”Scotland’s solicitors play a major part in Scotland’s economy and I would like that to be recognised. The Society will continue to promote the profession to attract business to Scotland and enhance our economy.” - Yes they certainly do, although not always in an honest manner, as the complaints statistics over the years have & continue to illustrate ...