Reclaim against Lord Woolman’s 14 February 2012 Judgement
Lord Woolman issued his judgement in causa Tods Murray LLP. v. Arakin Limited on 14 February 2012. After 16 years of litigation, and many many hours of court time, Lord Woolman was able to issue an opinion that runs to a grand total of 21 paragraphs (or six sheets of double spaced A4).
His recent opinion cites NO LAW whatsoever. He is obviously not ignorant of the law – he is simply ignoring the law. In support of his final judgement Lord Woolman merely quotes himself from his earlier 2010 opinion in our case. That opinion was issued by him in July 2010 following an arduous two week legal debate in December 2009 to determine the scope of the then forthcoming proof. That debate was on legal principles to be applied to this cause. As we were repeatedly told it was ‘not about the facts.’
Due to Lord Woolman’s failure to recognise the existence of the Solicitors (Scotland) Accounts Rules; his failure to recognise the ‘fact’ that Tods Murray’s judicial admission, in their Answers to our Notice to Admit (lodged immedietely prior to the July 2011 proof as an amalgamated document) that they had been paid £70,817.87 in excess of the sums they’d invoiced on Robert Dobie’s accounts (No.s 12 and 36 of Process); due to his failure to recognise the existence of HMRC’s VAT Regulations; due to his failure to recognise the legal authority of Begg on Law Agents XIII; and due to his failure to recognise the pursuers’ abuse of the court process which, ‘” can occur in many ways, i. by pursuing a claim or presenting a defence in bad faith and with no genuine belief in its merits; ii. by fraudulent means; iii. for an improper ulterior motive…..’” , we have decided to appeal his decision to the Inner House.
The appeal process is, in fact, under way. Our appeal will be heard by three judges of the second division at a hearing set to take place on the 4th and 5th of July 2012. The ‘Latest news’ tab on this site will be used to post all documentation as it is lodged with the court.
First, some background reading;
Lord McKay’s 26 April 2006 Opinion This opinion was issued following the court hearing of the objections to the Auditor’s findings in his Report to the Court. It lays out the reductions in Tods Murray’s accounts following the 1997 taxation of their fees, and sets out the matters that would have to be dealt with/clarified in order for a fair and proper hearing to be possible.
Opinion of the Lord Justice Clerk 21 March 1997 in the Reclaiming Motion by Tods Murray This opinion, issued following Tods Murray’s appeal against Lord McKay’s 2006 opinion, was this opinion that ultimately led to Michael Simpson’s 100% uplift in fee being awarded by the Auditor and permitted Robert Dobie’s 60%, already awarded by teh Auditor, to remain.
This opinion’s key ‘error’ is at paragraph  ‘ The pursuers rendered three accounts to Arakin. The first (No 6 of Pro) was for their fees and outlays in the GDC arbitration and related proceedings. The second and third (Nos 12 and 36 of Pro) were for their fees and outlays in the MB litigations. Arakin refused to pay the accounts.’ There was of course no refusal to pay these accounts. There could not have been. No.’s 12 and 36 weren’t even produced until the pursuers were instructed to do so by way of court interlocutor weeks, and years after the summons was raised. A quick check of the interlocutors issued in this cause by the three presiding judges prior making their determination would have clarified this matter.