Cartoon legals

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Alistair Morris, the chief executive of Pagan Osborne, implies that solicitors in Scotland are now thoroughly imbued with a desire to regard the interests of their clients as absolute (Law and Legal Affairs, 27 May). He states: “The biggest shift in the legal profession over the past few years has been the clients’ needs must come first.”

That descent from the heights of inflated self-regard, preening pomposity and bumptious posturing will be news to many clients and to the “regulators” of the legal profession – the Law Society and the Faculty of Advocates. As the “investigators” of complaints about the conduct of solicitors, advocates and QCs, the society and the faculty will know that the the “biggest shift” has not been “big” enough to persuade the laity that the legal fraternity in Scotland has entirely eradicated the laity’s perception of the fraternity as the not infrequent suppliers of cartoon capers masquerading as legal services.

Sometimes those “services” include Tom and Jerry preparation; a Scooby Doo approach to the citation of precedents; the delegation of the construction of legal arguments to Road Runner and a Loony Tunes guide to the Art and Practice of Effective Advocacy. Mr Morris reassured Scotland’s lawyers that they can adapt and prosper when dealing with the prospective changes to the legal landscape in Scotland: “We have the relevant expertise and, therefore, the opportunity to adapt and extend our skills to match the modern challenges.”

Time will tell, but Tom, Jerry, Scooby Doo and the Road Runner are not yet fretting about how to adjust to life as the recipients of a Jobseeker’s allowance.

Thomas Crooks

Dundas Street