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Latest News

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 Court case underlined , it is important to remember that the...

New Minimum Wage Rates

The Chancellor of the Exchequer announced in his Autumn Statement that the following changes to the National Living Wage (NLW) and the National Minimum Wage (NMW) will come into effect on 1 April 2017: The NLW for those aged 25 and over will increase...

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 law, the High Court answered that question in the affirmative . The...

Can Developments That Conflict With Local Plans Ever Be 'Sustainable'?

In a guideline decision on the correct interpretation of the sustainability provisions of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), the High Court has scotched plans for 150 new homes on the edge of a market town. Planning permission for the...

Disability Discrimination - A Question of Cause and Effect

Findings of disability discrimination require proof not only of unfavourable treatment but also of a causal connection between that treatment and a person's disability. That point was thrown into relief in the case of a PE teacher who was dismissed after...

Reliance on Accountant's Advice Prevents Penalty

When a man inherited a property, he and his wife rented it out and later put it on the market for sale. In May 2010, they exchanged contracts for sale. They moved into the property at the end of June that year and lived in it for nearly a month, moving out...

Bank Fails to Avoid Guarantee Liability

The sums of money involved in international trade are so vast that without bank guarantees to underpin contracts, the wheels of commerce would cease to turn. However, as one High Court case vividly revealed , banks normally insist that all the formalities...

Government Review of Employment Tribunal Fees

The Ministry of Justice has published its long-awaited review of Employment Tribunal (ET) fees, which were introduced in July 2013. This concluded that the objectives for the introduction of fees – i.e. transferring a proportion of the cost from the...

Shape Must Convey Brand to Create Goodwill

Many household objects are of a similar shape and even where the shape of an object made by a manufacturer has a particular style, the existence of intellectual property rights in that style will depend on it being unique to the point that potential...

Trustee of Deceased Bankrupt Cannot Claim Payment From Spouse

Financial problems are frequently connected with marital problems, and the interplay between family law and insolvency law can produce legal complications. In a recent instance, the court had to decide what to do about a claim from the receiver in...

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 risky approach to take. Under British law, the purchaser of a property takes...

Court Rejects Unprovable Claim of Property Gift

Arguments over the division of estates are unfortunately common where the value of the assets they contain is substantial, especially if family relationships are fractious. In such circumstances, the distribution of an estate can be delayed by legal...

Dismissal When Final Written Warning 'Manifestly Inappropriate'

Workplace disciplinary processes often have a number of distinct phases, and legal errors in any one of them can be enough to infect the whole. That point was made in the case of a BBC producer who was dismissed after being issued with a manifestly...

Council Held to Account Over False Claims

Press releases circulated by public authorities enjoy a high level of credence and are widely published across the media. However, their accuracy is not guaranteed and, in one case, a man who was wrongly accused of causing the death of rare breed cattle in...

Recording Studio Must Live With Demolition Project Next Door

In ever more densely packed urban areas, hardly any development can take place without treading on someone's toes. The point was illustrated by one High Court case in which a recording studio complained that a demolition and flat-building project next door...

Court Guidance on Jurisdiction

When contracts have an international element and a dispute arises, it is often necessary to ascertain at a very early stage which country's courts have jurisdiction to deal with the dispute. In the case of a dispute over a contract, the place of performance...

Government Acts to Close Dubious Investment Companies

An essential role of government is to ensure that companies do not operate against the public interest and tight regulatory regimes exist to prevent this, particularly where investments are concerned as the opportunity for fraud is very clear. The fact that...

Trade Mark Validity - It All Depends

A recent ruling by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has implications for the owners of trade marks which are only used in part of the EU. The nub of the ruling is that if a court in the EU finds that an EU trade mark may cause confusion...

When is a Conversion Not a Conversion?

The conversion of agricultural buildings for residential use is commonplace and a special planning regime exists to simplify the procedure for farm owners wishing to convert buildings into residential property. If the conversion meets the criteria defining a...

Family Companies and Benefits in Kind - Tax Tribunal Guidance

When it comes to Income Tax, almost nothing is more controversial than benefits in kind. The Chancellor's recent announcement on restrictions on 'salary sacrifice' illustrates the Government's hostile attitude towards tax planning that takes advantage of...
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