Archive for November, 2008

Year 3, week 9: get over it

“I haven’t seen Claire in the last few weeks, BabyB. All well, I hope?”

Because it was OldRuin doing the asking I didn’t feel in the slightest that he was prying. In fact, I was touched that he took the time to ask. “Oh. We had another argument, OldRuin. It came to a bit of a head where we were talking in the abstract about settling down and the like. I said I wouldn’t want to until I’d forged a solid career at the bar.”
“And what did she say?”
“She told me I was a commitment-phobe who should get over the fact that my dad left home when I was tiny.”
“That doesn’t sound like Claire at all.”
“Well, to be fair, she said it just as some sort of jokey, half drunken provocative comment. The problem is, OldRuin, that as soon as the words had left her mouth, we both looked at each other and knew.”
“Knew what?”
“That she was right.”

He didn’t ask further and we returned to our work.

November 26, 2008 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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Year 3, week 9:

So I had my case yesterday against TopFirst in which my client has gone AWOL. Well, at least  I understood that he’d disappeared and thought that today I’d be applying for an adjournment. But when I arrived at court my solicitor, the infamous SlipperySlope himself, was there to meet me smirking slightly and standing next to a man who he introduced as “our missing client”. Yeh, right. Though I’d never met him, the medical report clearly stated that he was aged twenty-five and this chap looked about fifty. Not only that but according to one of the file notes the client was said to be about six foot two whereas the man to whom I was introduced was about five six. Never having met the client myself I took Slippery to one side and asked: “Are you sure this is our client? He looks shorter and somewhat older than I was expecting.”
“Mere details, BabyB. Look, here’s his passport. Definitely him.”

I examined the passport and it certainly legit but I still didn’t believe it. “What’s going on?” I asked.
“Oh, BabyB, don’t you worry your little barrister head,” he replied.
“We’ll both be worrying if I withdraw from this case and the judge orders an investigation.”
“You wouldn’t dare.”
“I would unless you’re straight with me. However bad, I still want to know what you’re up to.”

He didn’t look at all happy and hesitated for quite a while as he looked at me as if coming to a decision. “Okay. But this one is definitely privileged.”
“Rent a client dot com. Solved many a tricky little situation. Sometimes, your client simply won’t survive cross-examination. Other times, like today, he actually disappears.”
“You what?”
“It fulfils a need, BabyB. We’ve got two hundred grand in costs riding on this hearing and all we need is someone to turn up at court, agree to the witness statements that we’ve already drafted and to answer a few questions about his earnings and his job prospects. Easy really and worth ever penny of the ten grand it costs.”
“You what?”
“Oh, don’t be so precious. You’ve got twenty grand of your own fees riding on the success of this case. That’s on top of the fact that I just happen to know that you hate your opponent’s guts and would do anything to do one over on him.”

He was, of course, right on both counts. So what did I do?

Well, let’s put it this way: TopFirst didn’t come out on the winning side.

November 24, 2008 · Tim Kevan · 2 Comments
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Year 3, week 8: old tricks

“You really thought I’d fall for that old trick, BabyB. I’d have thought more even of you?”

It was TopFirst and he had called me on my mobile to discuss the case in which my client’s gone missing. “I have no idea what you’re talking about,” I replied.
“Oh, come off it. Calling up my clerks with a made up solicitor’s name? You think I’m not going to check that up before spilling my guts to the clerks?”
“You’re losing it TopFirst.”
“Yeh, particularly as UpTights had warned me that you’d try this little trick sooner or later. Seems OldSmoothie’s been using it on her for years.”

“Anyway, I thought I’d return the gesture and when I rang your clerks trying to book you for Monday they were more than happy to tell me that the case definitely wouldn’t be going ahead and I quote, “because his client’s done a runner.” Sloppy, BabyB. Look forward to seeing you in court. Oh, and by the way. For the avoidance of doubt. Guess what? We hereby withdraw even the paltry offer we made you last week. Come to court with no client and no notice to the court and I’ll be seeking wasted costs against you personally.”


November 19, 2008 · Tim Kevan · One Comment
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Year 3, week 8: JudgesZoo

I see that someone suggested that I couldn’t have been in court on Friday afternoon because I made a comment on this blog. Nice try, but you seem to forget that the whole of the baby bar is online whilst they’re sitting around in court waiting for their opponents to finish whatever they’re doing. I mean, let’s face it, there’s a lot of twiddling your thumbs during court hearings which until recently was just lost time. But now I manage to get all my emails done and if it’s a full day in court I also tend to finish a couple of Particulars of Claim. Much easier than last year as well when we were all having to fiddle with our Blackberrys under the table. This year someone came up with the bright idea of simply pretending to take notes of the hearing on the laptop and then connecting it up with the iPhone sitting in your bag. So for anyone who’s been to court recently and wonders why the junior bar suddenly looks so keen as to be typing notes on every small claim, now you know.

But what perhaps you don’t know is that we now have over 500 barristers taking part in the online virtual reality game SecondLife. We’ve basically created a world which is populated only by those barristers who are appearing in court. Very frightening what their creative minds have produced in the last few weeks. Forget about schools and hospitals. So far, we have a dodgy firm of solicitors, an ambulance chasing accident management company and then the one which took most people by surprise, the Judges’ Zoo. Yes, believe it or not, it’s already become a convention that if the judge you’re appearing in front of is being particularly annoying then you simply create a persona for him in SecondLife and stick him in the Judge’s Zoo. Though when I say zoo, think prison to all intents and purposes. It’s proving to be a particularly popular tourist attraction, particularly after someone added a function in which you’re able to throw your wig at the occupants of said zoo.

November 17, 2008 · Tim Kevan · 3 Comments
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