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John Brennan Case Listed in The Lawyer Magazine’s Top 20 Cases for 2014.

Godiva Mortgages Ltd –v- Travelers Insurance Company Ltd  and Willmett Solicitors (third party) Royal and Sun Alliance plc (4th Party) The Law Society (5th Party)

The above case, in which John Brennan is instructed on behalf of the claimant, has been included in The Lawyer’s annual look at the largest and most important cases to come before the courts in the year ahead.

Due to commence in mid-November before the Commercial Court for four weeks, the case is the largest forthcoming aggregation dispute that concerns solicitors’ professional indemnity insurance and mortgage fraud.

The Lawyer comments:

“The dispute was sparked by the activities of Willmett conveyancing partner Jonathan Gilbert. The Berkshire-based lawyer was involved in a number of fraudulent property transactions that came to light during the 2008 financial crash.

The firm was landed with a series of claims from various lenders, including lender Godiva. Judgments and claims against the firm currently stand at around £45m. The firms’ insurers Travellers and RSA, however, have capped cover at £10m because the claims all arise as a result of Gilbert’s actions.

The result is that Willmett is now in liquidation and has no funds left to pay the claims. Willmetts’ partners who were not indicated in the fraud, or who had retired before the fraud was uncovered, have in most cases been made bankrupt or have entered into individual voluntary arrangements (IVAs); and the remainder are on the verge of bankruptcy.

The Law Society has been joined to the action as an intervenor in both its representative capacity for the profession and in its regulatory capacity as the SRA.

This is likely to become the case law precedent on various major, current and recurring aggregation issues and so is exceptionally high profile. The Law Society and SRA have intervened, with the potential for significant market impact for insurers, insureds, the Law Society and the SRA.”

To read the article in full online at The Lawyer, click here.

John Brennan’s profile can be viewed by clicking here.

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