Sound Judgement

One of the earliest law reports in history concerns the two prostitutes who took their dispute to King Solomon. Both had given birth to sons three days apart but one child had died and each woman claimed that the surviving child was hers. It was for the king to determine which woman was telling the truth and Solomon was unable to say whom was the biological mother.

He therefore suggested a somewhat radical procedure to settle the dispute. He proposed to cut the child in two so that each mother would have half the child. At this point one of the women concedes saying that she would rather the other raised her child than her child be slaughtered. From this Solomon is able to determine that this woman must be the real mother. Case closed.

This story illustrates a number of points. Child services in biblical time, as now, had their work cut out. DNA testing has made custody disputes much simpler. But what is also striking is the very easy access to justice. Straight to the king. No apparent bureaucracy. Very little procedure. No forms to fill in. No mention of costs or fees. Most notably, no lawyers! Just a trip to the palace and the Judgement of Solomon.

Well, such halcyon days are long gone. Justice has disappeared into the legal system. So many aspects of our lives require the input and expense of a lawyer. Settling disputes, getting a divorce, buying or selling a house, making a will, sorting out an estate, transferring a business. We would all like to be able to do it ourselves. Sometimes, with the internet, we think we can but so often it ends up like trying to extract your own teeth and wishing you had gone to the dentist in the first place.

So, welcome to North West Lawyers. We cannot change the system – it is the one we are all stuck with – but we do know how to negotiate your way through it. Solomon’s justice may no longer exist but his wisdom survives and wisdom does not always mean knowing the right answer, it is knowing who to go to with the questions.

For more information, please contact Warren Usden on 0333 2005202 or

Greenhalgh Kerr is a niche debt recovery and commercial litigation practice.

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