Blog

black and white

June 22nd, 2012

Earlier this week I was heavily defeated in a game of Othello.  This photograph shows the final position (I was black).  My opponent has a PhD in mathematics from Cambridge University, and had been explaining the in-depth theory of what I had thought to be a simple game.  He more or less guaranteed to beat me by wiping me out before all the pieces were on the board.

I am pleased to say that I have a better track record in litigation/dispute resolution.  I described some of the processes that I go through in my post on Zen and the Art of Law.  Perhaps the procedures whereby evidence is disclosed mean that the process has fewer imponderables, certainly once the parties’ cards are on the table.

But there is a greater difference between what we do in assisting clients in dealing with disputes and a game such as Othello or Chess.  In those games, the outcome is black and white, or should I say black or white.  There is only one end: one player wins and the other loses.  The objective is to defeat the opponent.

But dispute resolution does not always have to be black and white.  Richard and I work with our clients to understand and agree objectives.  Often our role is to advise and to assist in resolution. In many situations our business clients want to achieve a commercial deal which enables both parties to move forward.  Total victory over the opponent is not always what is required.


One of region’s best-known practitioners in commercial property law has joined Graeme Quar & Co.

Michael Dalton acts as a consultant for the commercial law specialist from June 1st.

Graeme Quar & Co, with a head office in Fareham and a recently opened one in Petersfield, has seen turnover rise by more than one third over the past 12 months on the back of heightened activity by clients.

Michael is a senior commercial property and business solicitor who operated his own law firm, Daltons, for more than 25 years in south Hampshire, more recently in High Street, Petersfield.

Last summer Michael closed his successful firm and, since then, has been providing legal advice to a select group of London-based clients, dealing with high-value property transactions.

Graeme Quar, managing director, said: “Michael has a market-leading reputation for commercial property legal services and is very well known in the Petersfield business community and will be able to introduce clients to us to expand our base in the market town and along the A3 corridor.

“Also, previous clients of Michael’s firm still seek to utilise his expertise, so we will be able to welcome them to the fold through Michael.

“We are also in active discussions with at least one other consultant, with a view to them joining up, because demand for our services continue to grow and we’re getting a lot of referral work in. There is a lot of activity happening out there by all sorts of businesses, despite or because of the economic headwinds.”

Michael, who lives locally, will be working at Petersfield.

He said: “There are strong synergies between Graeme’s business and what I do, which is acting for entrepreneurs in a range of commercial property transactions, from acquisitions and disposals to lease work.

“I look forward to generating and servicing instructions from clients under the Graeme Quar & Co banner – this is an exciting new chapter for all of us.”