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Legal Articles

Jun 18

When Does Notice of Termination Take Effect?

Exactly when notice of termination takes effect can impact on an employee's entitlement to certain benefits or employment rights. In the absence of an express term in the employee's contract,...

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Jun 18

The General Data Protection Regulation

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which replaced the EU Data Protection Directive, came into force on 25 May 2018 and now, together with the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA...

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Mar 18

GDPR Guidance

If you have not yet taken steps to ensure your business complies with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the time to start is now: less than two months remain...

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Mar 18

The GDPR and Your Firm's Pension Scheme

The press is awash with comment about the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which will be fully enforced from 25 May 2018. It would be difficult for any organisation not...

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Mar 18

GDPR General Principles

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) applies detailed provisions to ensure that personal data – i.e. any data relating to an identifiable person – is properly processed and kept secure,...

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Mar 18

GDPR Documenting Processing Activities

Article 30 of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) contains explicit provisions that require organisations to maintain internal records of their data processing activities. This obligation reflects the increased importance...

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Feb 18

The Right to Privacy and the Workplace

In the long-running case of Bărbulescu v Romania, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) looked at an employer's right to examine an employee's use of office computers for sending...

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Feb 18

Age Discrimination and Retirement

Since the abolition of the Default Retirement Age (DRA) in 2011, it is not permissible for an employer to dismiss an older worker on the ground of retirement unless this...

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Oct 17

In Brief: HSE Guidance on the Safe Use of Work Equipment

The Health and Safety Executive has a publication on what employers and others responsible for workplace health and safety should do in order to comply with the Provision and Use...

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Oct 17

The GDPR – Will You Be Ready?

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which replaces the EU Data Protection Directive, is a comprehensive data protection regime aimed at achieving a high level of security of network and...

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Oct 17

Pension Rights for Gay Spouses and Civil Partners

The Supreme Court has handed down a ruling which means that all married gay couples and civil partners should receive equal pension rights. Paragraph 18 of Schedule 9 of the Equality...

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Oct 17

Monitoring of Employee's Emails Did Violate His Privacy Rights

In the long-running case of Bărbulescu v Romania, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) looked at an employer's right to examine an employee's use of office computers for sending...

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Oct 17

Compensation for Injury to Feelings

Compensation in unfair dismissal cases is based on financial losses, but where the dismissal is also discriminatory, it is possible to claim damages for non-financial loss – for example injury...

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Aug 17

Removing or Modifying Covenants Over Land

  Covenants over property are a potential nightmare for developers but fortunately there are circumstances in which a covenant can be removed. If the beneficiaries of the covenant for which removal is...

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Aug 17

SIPPs and Your Business Property

The Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP) was introduced in order to give people far more control over how their pension pots are invested and have proven to be very popular with...

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Aug 17

Small Pension Pots Planning Possibilities

People aged over 55 who have only a small (less than £30,000) pension pot in a defined benefit (final salary) scheme or in some instances in a defined contribution scheme...

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Jun 17

Power of Attorney Fees Fall

With the recent furore over the Government's proposed increase in the cost of obtaining probate on larger estates, currently on ice owing to lack of parliamentary time in the run...

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Jun 17

Danger of Subletting Exposed as Court Orders Flat Sale

Owning a long leasehold, particularly one in a block of flats or which is part of a larger development, can be very different from owning a freehold. Typically the obligations...

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Jun 17

A Guide to the Gender Pay Gap Reporting Regulations

The Equality Act 2010 (Gender Pay Gap Information) Regulations 2017 came into force on 6 April 2017, introducing mandatory gender pay gap reporting on an annual basis for private and...

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Jun 17

Uninsured Drivers and Compensation Claims

When accidents cause damage or injury and the responsible driver is uninsured, a claim can be made to the Motor Insurers' Bureau (MIB), an organisation financed by motor insurers with...

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Jun 17

Tax Law No Respecter of (Cultural) Tradition

An argument that assets which HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) said belonged to a deceased man (and were thus subject to Inheritance Tax) were actually owned in whole or in...

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Jun 17

High Court Encourages Social Workers to Make Use of Facebook

In the Internet era, it is wholly acceptable to use Facebook or other social media to make contact with those who have to be notified of family proceedings. The High...

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Jun 17

Cocktail of Drugs Not Sufficient to Overturn Will

Disputes about the validity of wills frequently centre on allegations that the deceased lacked 'mental capacity' when they created a will. In a recent case, the court had to consider whether...

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May 17

Noise Is Not the Only Form of Disturbance – High Court Ruling

Disturbance can take many forms and noise is just one of them. Planners made that point in heeding the concerns of residents of a quiet cul-de-sac and scotching plans for...

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May 17

Indemnity Insurance Comes to the Rescue in Identity Fraud Case

On the rare occasion that a professional adviser makes a mistake or behaves improperly, clients should be able to be confident of being compensated in full. A recent case shows...

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May 17

Financial Advice to Become More Common?

We have often written about the dangers of taking advice from unqualified and/or unregulated advisers. A recent change in the regulations surrounding financial advice will cause some concern for those...

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May 17

Giving Up Your Career to Get Married? Think Twice!

A person who voluntarily prioritises their marriage over their working life may not be entitled to compensation for the earnings foregone if their relationship ends in divorce. The Court of...

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May 17

Assets of Elderly Are Target of Wrongdoers

Where there is money, there is opportunity for wrongdoing and a steady stream of cases show that vigilance is needed to prevent the assets of the deceased or elderly being...

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May 17

Court Urges Simplification of 'Right to Manage' Rules

As a recent case shows, whilst there is legislation which, in certain circumstances, allows leaseholders to obtain the right to manage the buildings they occupy, the process is replete with...

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May 17

Bank Mistake – HMRC Still Levy Penalty

When a taxpayer named Mr Coomber sent his cheque by post to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to settle his tax demand, he thought that would be the end of...

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May 17

Divorce: Asset Division Not Always Equal

In general, there is a presumption that on divorce the assets will be split more or less equally, but that is based on case law interpretation of the Matrimonial Causes...

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May 17

Accountant Forged Mother's $50 Million Will

Will disputes can be extremely bitter and the kind of skulduggery depicted in fiction sadly sometimes reflects reality. In one case, the High Court found that a well-respected accountant had...

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Apr 17

Charity Report Highlights Need for Trustee Vigilance

The need for charities to exercise strict controls over the disbursement of significant sums was made clear in a recent report by the Charity Commissioners into a small charity. The charity,...

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Apr 17

Probate Charges Increase Likely to Be Delayed

The Government has acknowledged that the upcoming general election makes it unlikely that probate fees will increase significantly in May as planned, as there will not be time for Parliament...

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Apr 17

Definitive Plan Decides Boundary Dispute

Boundary disputes are commonplace and, unless skilfully mediated, can often spiral out of control, ending up in legal action the cost of which far exceeds the value of the land...

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Apr 17

Tax Penalties Avoided for Those Affected by IT Glitch

With HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) pressing ahead with plans to make 'customers' deal with them only digitally, it is good to see that when a system issue with the...

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Apr 17

Court Enforces Pre-Nuptial Agreement

When the marriage of a wealthy couple broke up, the English court had the opportunity to consider the impact of two pre-nuptial agreements the couple had made before they wed. The...

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Apr 17

Problems for Family Unaddressed as People Still Shun Wills

The latest research from National Savings and Investments shows that a staggering 64 per cent of adults in the UK have not made a will, and that 38 million adults...

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Apr 17

Driver Need Not Enforce Wheelchair Space on Bus, Rules Court

The Supreme Court has ruled on the long-running dispute between First Bus and a disabled passenger who sued the bus company after a driver declined to intervene when a passenger...

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Apr 17

A Guide to Gender Pay Gap Reporting

In spite of the Equal Pay Act 1970, which prohibited less favourable treatment between men and women in terms of pay and conditions, and subsequent equality laws, there is still...

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Apr 17

Failure to Reveal All Proves Costly for Developer

The standard pre-contract enquiries made by a solicitor when a client is intending to purchase a property include querying whether there are any disputes which may affect the value of...

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Apr 17

Court Corrects Bureaucratic Nightmare for Family

One of the most important roles played by judges is to protect individuals against unlawful treatment by the state. In one unique example, the High Court came to the aid...

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Apr 17

Solicitor Evidence Crucial in Proving Will Valid

A recent case shows the importance of involving a solicitor in the preparation of a will, especially where it is considered that an attempt to invalidate it on the grounds...

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Apr 17

Carrying Out Building Works? Consult Your Neighbours First!

Disputes between neighbours can be agonising, both emotionally and financially, but taking advice at an early stage can swiftly draw the sting. In one case where matters were allowed to...

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Apr 17

Lack of Diligence Costs House Purchaser

House buyers often regard any inspection of a property beyond that undertaken by the surveyor acting for their mortgage provider as unnecessary. A recent case shows why this is a...

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Apr 17

Woman Aged 96 Wins £223,000 for Negligent Investment Advice

The complexities of financial advice can be bamboozling, particularly for the elderly, but one High Court case – in which a 96-year-old woman won more than £220,000 in damages in...

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Mar 17

Unexplained Delay Denies Right to Give Evidence

A recent case in which a litigant who waited more than a year to file its final defence against a claim had its late submissions rejected by the court is...

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Mar 17

Tax Evasion Assistance – Changes in the Law

New rules which came into effect on 1 January 2017 will see professionals who deliberately aid clients to evade (not avoid, which is legal) tax saddled with penalties of the...

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Mar 17

Massive Increases in Probate Charges on Large Estates on the Way

Probate fees, which rose sharply only three years ago, are about to rise again. Under the present scheme an application for probate by an individual costs £215 and by a solicitor...

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Mar 17

Supreme Court Overturns Daughter's Will Claim Award

A surprising Court of Appeal decision that a daughter was a 'dependant' of her estranged mother and thus entitled to benefit from her estate has now been overturned by the...

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Mar 17

New Powers Proposed to Make Family Financial Settlements Effective

The problem of making family financial settlements or court rulings in divorce 'stick' is well known. Following an extensive consultation process, the Law Commission has made proposals designed to improve...

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Mar 17

Attorney Who Forged Will to Accelerate Inheritance Given Jail Term

When an elderly man died owning both a house and a half share in an attached property with his sister, whose financial affairs were already being administered by a cousin...

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Mar 17

Where is a Taxpayer 'Ordinarily Resident'?

The answer to the vital question of whether a taxpayer is 'ordinarily resident' in the UK depends on many factors. In one such case, a billionaire businessman received an £84...

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Mar 17

Housing Association Tenant Pays Price for Unlawful Subletting

Social housing tenants are not normally permitted to sublet their properties. Where it is discovered that they have, an Unlawful Profits Order (UPO) can be made to recover any profit...

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Mar 17

Bankruptcy Can Be a Fresh Start – But Only For Those Who Cooperate!

Bankruptcy gives debtors the chance to wipe the slate clean and make a fresh start – but such opportunities are only open to those who cooperate with creditors: the law...

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Mar 17

Court Orders Must Be Obeyed – But Caring Pensioner Was Wrongly Jailed

Disobeying court orders is ultimately punishable by imprisonment – but only as a last resort. In the context of a family case, the Court of Appeal has ruled that a...

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Feb 17

Investment Opportunity? Take Advice First

Promises of generous returns on backing novel products can be awfully tempting for investors, but such investments should only be undertaken with the benefit of professional advice. In one case...

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Feb 17

Changes in Trustees – Who Appoints New Trustees?

Trusts are relatively common and the death of a trustee is by no means rare. A trust deed normally contains a clause stipulating how new trustees are to be appointed...

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Feb 17

Expert Resolution of Boundary Dispute 'Final and Binding'

Neighbours engaged in boundary disputes would generally be wise to submit their differences to an independent expert for resolution, rather than fighting it out in court. However, as one High...

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Feb 17

IVAs and Mental Capacity – Test Case Ruling

Can individual voluntary arrangements (IVAs) be valid if debtors who enter into them lack the mental capacity to make rational decisions? In an important test case that has clarified the...

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