I've always viewed working in-house as a privilege; that a company trusts one individual to be their primary source of leagl advice and cousel is a compliment in my book.
But now it appears that working in-house may be a less privileged role. In the strictly legal sense. The decision by the ECJ last week in Akzo Nobel vCommission means that legal privilege does not attach to advice provided by an in-house lawyer to their client/employer in EU competition law matters.
Swings and roundabouts. On the back of the decision, it was indeed an honour and a privilege for me to be asked by the Solicitors Journal to pen an article providing an in-house perspective of this decision. My article and views are here.
Well, things are finally starting to move forward on the personal brand quest front. I was delighted to speak with Legal Week recently in relation to a peice which they're writing on Tweeting Lawyers (I'll link to the piece once t goes live); I have an interview lined up for late September with 22Twts (a real time Twitter interview which asks 22 questions of tweeting lawyers, and I have the honour of being their first interview of an in-house lawyer), and finally I have myself a press deadline (scary) as I've been asked to provide an opinion piece for the Solicitors Journal on the recent Akzo Nobel case decison on privilege and the in-house lawyer.
One of the more interesting feeds in my daily RSS stream today pointed me in the direction of the OFT's website. The OFT website is one of the Government websites which I do tend to frequent more than others as so much of the OFT's work affects business (what with its myriad of Codes of Conduct, protection and enforcement work and competition regulation), but also business can affect the OFT's work as well (such as by contributing to their industry focussed consultations).
The reason for my visit to the website today though was to take a look at its online Hub launched to help retailers comply with the Sale of Goods Act (SGA). Like most legislation, the SGA isn't the most riveting of reads, as you can see here:
But the good old Hub has made it a much more user-friendly read, thus:
The Hub includes an at a glance flowchart, download area, case studies and even a quick quiz should the mood take you!
One of the many tasks of the in-house lawyer is to simplify legal concepts and make them less of an obstacle for business; the Hub is a terrific example of how lawyers can use technology creatively to achieve that goal.