Professor Robert Merkin is a consultant based in Southampton. He
is Research Professor of Commercial Law at Southampton University.
He has published books and articles on insurance, reinsurance and
arbitration law and is co-editor of the Lloyd's Law
I am a lawyer because...
Actually, officially, I'm not, as I have never qualified,
but don't tell anyone. Maybe one day...
What gives you greatest satisfaction, professionally?
Achieving clarity from the impenetrable, in writing, teaching
and giving advice.
Hearing one of my three daughters saying, "Dad, you were
right." Still waiting.
How do you spend your weekends?
Sadly, work often features at weekends. But, that aside,
enjoying the beautiful Devon scenery. If Spurs have lost, trying
frantically to avoid all mentions of the game in the media. If
Spurs have won, watching the game on as many TV programmes as
If you weren't a lawyer, what would you be doing?
Collecting rejection slips for my latest novel, scouring
"guitarist wanted" ads and trying to get my half-marathon
time down to one that avoids me being overtaken by someone in a
dustbin costume and four men dressed as nurses carrying a stretcher
containing a rugby player.
Who are your heroes?
Groucho Marx, John Le Carré, John McLaughlin and, of
course, Harry Redknapp.
What's on your iPod?
CSNY, Miles Davis, Roy Harper, Joni Mitchell, Jack Bruce and
And your favoured arbitration centre?
Sadly, my home town of Sidmouth in Devon (population 13,000,
average age about 90) does not have an International Arbitration
Centre, but I'm working on it.
What is your biggest vice?
They are many and varied, although mostly not illegal. As to the
biggest, it depends who you ask, but probably white chocolate.
What is your biggest mistake?
Consistently assuming that, if a film or concert is really bad
in the first ten minutes, then it is going to get better
– it won't, but I never learn that cutting my losses
is the least painful solution.
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This was an interlocutory decision about the appointment of a tutor for the child appellant, to carry on his proceedings.
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