The Law Society v Sephton and Co and others: ChD 2004

The Law Society claimed in negligence against the defendant firm of accountants who had wrongly certified the accounts of a firm of solicitors. The Society sought to recover the payments it had made from its compensation fund. The defendant pleaded limitation.
Held: The court ruled against the Society holding that the cause of action had accrued before 16 May 1996 and that Sephton and Co were not estopped from relying upon a limitation defence. A risk, produced by a negligent act or omission, of an adverse condition arising at some time in the future does not constitute damage sufficient to complete a tortious cause of action.


Mr Michael Briggs QC


[2004] EWHC 544 (Ch)


Limitation Act 1980 2


England and Wales

Cited by:

At First InstanceLaw Society v Sephton and Co (a Firm) and Others HL 10-May-2006
A firm of solicitors had a member involved in a substantial fraud. The defendant firm of accountants certified the firm’s accounts. There were later many calls upon the compensation fund operated by the claimants, who sought recovery in turn from . .
Appeal fromThe Law Society v Sephton and Co and others CA 13-Dec-2004
The Society appealed dismissal for limitation of its claim against the defendant firm of accountants arising from alleged fraud in approval of a solicitor’s accounts.
Held: The liability did not arise until the Society decided to make . .
CitedJohnston v NEI International Combustion Ltd; Rothwell v Chemical and Insulating Co Ltd; similar HL 17-Oct-2007
The claimant sought damages for the development of neural plaques, having been exposed to asbestos while working for the defendant. The presence of such plaques were symptomless, and would not themselves cause other asbestos related disease, but . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Updated: 01 May 2022; Ref: scu.241655