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Case details

General Legal Council (Appellant) v Michael Lorne (Respondent) (Jamaica)

Case ID: JCPC 2022/0083

Jurisdiction: Court of Appeal of Jamaica

Case summary


(1) Whether the sanction imposed by the Disciplinary Committee of The General Legal Council, striking the Respondent from the Roll of Attorneys-at-Law entitled to practice law in Jamaica, was an error of law or clearly inappropriate so as to warrant the intervention of the Court of Appeal in setting aside the order and imposing less severe sanctions.

(2) Whether in the circumstances of the case, the Court of Appeal ought to have deferred to the decision of the Disciplinary Committee.


The Respondent was an Attorney-at-Law admitted to practice at the Jamaican Bar. He was retained to sell a property at 10 Fairborne Avenue, which had been devised to the complainant and her brother in equal shares. In 2012, the complainant commenced proceedings against the Respondent before the Disciplinary Committee of the General Legal Council, alleging that he had failed to account to her for her share of the proceeds of sale.

The Disciplinary Committee found the Respondent guilty of professional misconduct, in breach of canon VII(b)(ii) of the Legal Profession (Canons of Professional Ethics) Rules. There was no express finding of dishonesty on the part of the Respondent. Following a sanctions hearing, it was ordered that the Respondent be struck off from the Roll of Attorneys-at-Law entitled to practice in Jamaica and that he make restitution to the complainant.

Following an appeal by the Respondent, the Court of Appeal of Jamaica upheld the findings of professional misconduct but varied the sanction imposed by substituting the striking off order with a five-year suspension coupled with an order that he obtain a number of credits in Continuing Legal Professional Development courses before being restored to the Roll. The GLC now appeals that decision before his Majesty in Council.



General Legal Council


Michael Lorne



Lord Hodge, Lord Sales, Lord Leggatt, Lord Richards, Lady Simler

Hearing start date

20 February 2024

Hearing finish date

20 February 2024

Watch hearing
20 February 2023 Morning session Afternoon session

Judgment details

Judgment date

23 May 2024

Neutral citation

[2024] UKPC 12