News In Focus
Two firms dominate Law Awards of Scotland
14 September 2012
Two commercial legal firms grabbed the main headlines at the 2012 Law Awards of Scotland last night.
Harper Macleod and MBM Commercial each took four titles from the 24 awards made, including respectively the accolades "Law firm of the year (over 40 fee earners)" and "Law firm of the year (under 40 fee earners)".
Lorne Crerar and Martin Darroch of Harper Macleod were also named "Managing partner/Team of the year", while the firm also took home the "Employment firm of the year" and "Insolvency firm of the year" prizes.
MBM Commercial's other successes were all for individuals: Cat McLean, who is currently leading litigation against banks for alleged mis-selling of financial products, as "Solicitor of the year"; Liina Tulk as "Trainee of the year"; and Claire Corbin as "Paralegal of the year".
However the Chairman's award, personally chosen by Lord Browne of Ladyton (Des Browne), chairman of trhe judging panel, went to a recently established Dunfermline practice which also took the title "Up and coming law firm of the year". Caritas Legal, which specialises in adults with incapacity law, was founded by its principal Lorna Brown, who spoke movingly of how she was inspired to do so by her mother, who died last year after developing Alzheimer's disease three years earlier.
Another moving moment was the naming of the late Paul McBride QC as recipient of the "Legal personality of the year" award, collected by his father George after a tribute was paid by his longstanding solicitor friend Aamer Anwar.
Other awards for legal practices went to Beltrami & Co (Criminal law firm of the year), Morisons (Family law firm of the year), Aberdein Considine (Private client firm of the year, and Support team of the year – their cashroom), HBM Sayers (Litigation firm of the year), Inksters (CSR firm of the year), and Clydebank's Scanlon Ewing (High street firm of the year). Kirkcaldy Law Society gained the title "Faculty of the year".
Tracey Campbell-Hynd of TCH Law, Hamilton, was named "Sole practitioner of the year", and Janette Wilson of the Church of Scotland, "In-house lawyer of the year". The awards were completed by naming Professor Douglas Brodie of Stirling University as "Legal academic of the year", and author, former academic and retired sheriff Douglas Cusine for the "Lifetime achievement" award.