Introducing a new SBM Blog category -- Tremors. In it you will find legal practice developments elsewhere that may or may not lead to rearranging the landscape here in Michigan. We have been reporting on these developments since the blog's beginnings. Here's the latest, from Bloomberg:
Admiral Group Plc (ADM), the U.K. motor insurer that owns confused.com, started joint ventures with two law firms after the government banned the practice of selling details of customers who have been in an accident.
Admiral will form the partnerships with law firms Lyons Davidson and Cordner Lewis Solicitors beginning May 1, the Cardiff, Wales-based firm said today in a statement. The government on April 1 banned so-called referral fees paid to insurers.
Prime Minister David Cameron outlawed the fees as part of an attempt to bring down the cost of motor insurance, which has climbed by more than a third over the past four years as claims soared due to the success of lawyers working on contingency fees and spurious injuries. By bringing the legal services in-house, Admiral gets to maintain revenue from successful legal claims against other insurers.
The acquisition is possible through legal reforms that allows "ABS" (alternative business structure) ownership of law firms. And yes, you read that right: confused.com.
For interesting background, see this story from the Sunday Mail in January.