Contact: Stephen Hughes, Special Counsel and Lara Radik, Senior Associate; Carter Newell (Queensland, Australia)

Every litigator or in-house claims manager has felt the temptation to ‘just file a holding defence’. The reasons may be varied, and often sensible – perhaps the claim is not worth a great deal, it appears to have no prospects of success, there are high hopes of settlement in the immediate short term, or a strike out or other interlocutory application is to be filed which may put an end to the whole proceeding without the need to invest further costs in the defence.

Read more: Cutting Corners? The risks of filing a ‘holding’ defence in Queensland

Contact: Madlen Searle, Clarkslegal LLP (Reading, England)

You cannot have escaped the recent judgment regarding Gordon Ramsay. For those who haven't heard of him he is a celebrity restaurateur and the star of several TV food programmes including Hell's Kitchen. Splashed all over the news was his recent battle in the High Court regarding the question of his personal liability for the £640,000 annual rent for the York & Albany pub near Regent's Park, which it was claimed he had guaranteed.

Read more: Celebrity Chef Litigation

Contact: Jill Bainbridge; Blake Morgan (Southampton, England)

Dispute Resolution analysis: The European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) has rejected a complaint by one of Joseph Stalin's grandsons about an article that appeared in a Russian newspaper in which the dictator was accused of being a 'bloodthirsty cannibal'. Jill Bainbridge, partner and expert in defamation and reputation management at Blake Morgan, explains why the dead cannot be defamed.

Read more: Defaming the Dead

Contact: Christian D. Sheehan; Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis LLP (Delaware & Pennsylvania, USA)


On January 21, 2015, the Supreme Court issued its much-anticipated decision in Gelboim v. Bank of America Group. The case presented a single question: Is a district court order dismissing all claims in an action that was consolidated with several others for pretrial purposes a final and immediately appealable order? In a unanimous decision authored by Justice Ginsburg, the Supreme Court said “Yes.”

Read more: Supreme Court Clarifies Application of Final Judgment Rule in MDL Proceedings, But Uncertainty...

Contact: William A. Goldberg; Lerch, Early & Brewer (Maryland, USA)

I often see attorneys make the mistake of filing "kitchen sink" complaints, that is, lawsuits containing redundant and/or superfluous causes of action, that turn what could be straightforward claims into messy, complicated quagmires. If your goal is to offer efficient, cost-effective litigation services for your clients that maximize their chances for recovery, "kitchen sink" pleading is almost never the way to go. Here are five reasons to avoid it:

Read more: The Five Perils of "Kitchen Sink" Pleading