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Court Order increases maintenance payments after 15 years

Spencer Davis
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Court orders husband to increase payments to wife who lost the bulk of her divorce settlement with 'poor financial decisions' Maria Mills received a £230,000 lump sum from ex-husband Graham alongside maintenance payments of £1,100 a...

Changes to termination payments over £30,000

Spencer Davis
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"Chancellor George Osbourne has announced that from 2018, termination payments over £30,000 will be subject to employer's National Insurance contributions (under £30,000.00 is currently free of tax and National Insurance contributions...

Beware of new tax offences!

Lisa Carter
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The Finance Bill 2016 ("FB 2016") introduces three new criminal offences tackling tax evasion and avoidance Part 10 of the FB 2016 contains provisions for tackling tax avoidance and evasion, including three new criminal offences seeking to tackle...

A major reform of the legal aid system in England and Wales has been scrapped, the justice secretary Michael Gove has announced.

Spencer Davis
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Plans to slash the number of law firms allowed to do criminal legal aid work at police stations and magistrates' courts has been scrapped, following repeated protest from Lawyers claiming the reforms could damage quality and access to justice. Labour...

MPs call for a 20% tax on sugary drinks

Spencer Davis
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The Commons' Health Select Committee has said there is "compelling evidence" a tax would reduce sugar consumption and help in the battle against child obesity in England. The  Committee's report , which acknowledges that no single...

Women in the Boardroom

Alexandra Dean
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The end of October saw the publication of the Davies report of 'Women on Boards.' Though the number of women on boards has almost doubled since the beginning of 2010, the report recommends that now a third of all boardroom positions should be given...

New thresholds for bankruptcy petitions

Justin Emerson
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On 1 October 2015, the threshold debt needed for creditors' bankruptcy petitions was raised. On the above date the Insolvency Act 1986 (Amendment) Order 2015 amends section 267(4) of the Insolvency Act 1986. The effect of this is that the threshold debt...

Junior doctors could strike over proposed contracts

Spencer Davis
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Junior doctors in England have voted to ballot for strike action over new contracts which they say could see their pay cut by 30 per cent. The British Medical Association (BMA) junior doctors committee said the ballot is being held because the Government...

Consumer Rights Act 2015: Remedies

Justin Emerson
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This article seeks to explore the remedies available to consumers under the Consumer Rights Act 2015 which came into force in October this year. The CRA sets out the remedies to consumers in a tiered approach. It is expected that this simplified procedure...

Agricultural tax relief?

Spencer Davis
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Prior to April 2011, Agricultural Building Allowances were available on the cost of an agricultural building, allowing a tax deduction for the cost of the building over a number of years.  Following the abolition of the scheme, however, there is no...

Osborne puts inheritance tax under the spotlight

Lisa Carter
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The Chancellor announced that the UK economy grew 2.6% in 2014, faster than any other advanced economy but lower than the 3% that he predicted in December. He also reported record levels of employment and trade deficit figures that are "the best for 15...

Secrets in Switzerland lead to big penalty bill

Lisa Carter
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The case, the first to test the position in court, is a warning to anyone who fails to come up with the facts when asked questions by those handling the estate of someone who has died. When Clayton Hutching’s father died, he left an estate of farm...

Osborne headlines on stamp duty but disappoints on inheritance tax

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Highlighting that the UK is currently the fastest growing economy in the G7, the Chancellor announced an improved economic growth forecast for 2014, increased to 3% from the 2.7% predicted in March, and against a backdrop of 500,000 new jobs created this...

Passions were high as schools battled it out at the annual Gepp and Sons Schools Legal Debate

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Sixth form students from, Anglo European School, Brentwood School, Brentwood Ursuline Convent High School, Felsted School, Great Baddow High School, King Edward VI Grammar School, New Hall School and William De Ferrers School debated on the emotive...

Be Aware National Minimum Wage to increase as of 1st October 2014

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The increased NMW rates were recommended by the Low Pay Commission (LPC) and accepted in full by the government earlier this year. The LPC said the rises, the first real terms cash increase since 2008, had been set at a manageable level for employers. The...

2014 Budget - Highlights

Alexandra Dean
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Tax free childcare The government has confirmed that the new tax-free childcare scheme will be launched in autumn 2015. Under the scheme, working families (all parents in the household must be "in work" earning on average £50 a week,...

EU vetoes maternity leave in surrogate cases

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The European Court of Justice has ruled against claims for maternity benefits by mothers whose babies were born through surrogacy in two cases just announced, with the decisions coming weeks after the UK has agreed legislation that will put both intending...

Government's Clampdown on Term-Time Holidays

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The regulations, which came into force on 1st September 2013, have come under sharp opposition from parents. A campaign started by Craig Langman (a parent himself) urges the Government to overturn the new regulations. The campaign has so far gained more than...

New unfair dismissal compensation limit introduced

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The Basic Award The Basic Award is calculated in the same way as a statutory redundancy payment and takes into account an individual’s length of service, gross weekly pay (subject to a statutory cap of £450 per week) and age.  The...

Government to introduce lie detector tests for sex offenders

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The proposed scheme follows the system that has long been in place in theUnited Stateswhere polygraph tests are mandatory for serious sex offenders. It is understood the proposal will mean that tests for sex offenders who are categorised as 'serious'...

New fraud sentencing guidelines to focus on harm.

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Under new guidelines being considered by the Sentencing Council, consideration is being given to a new system to take more account oF the impact on the victims of the offences and whether they were vulnerable. The proposals would apply to offences ranging...

Legal disputes between parents living in different countries on the rise

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Lord Justice Thorpe, Head of International Family Justice forEnglandandWales, has released his annual report, calling for better co-operation between countries on all aspects of family law. Last year alone the courts inEnglandandWalesdealt with more than 250...

Possible repeal of new squatting laws

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It is understood that the police have not arrested anyone for displacing residents from their homes under the new laws, and only 3 people have been sentenced to terms of imprisonment since the new laws were introduced in September 2012.  A total of...

Government plans to introduce prison mentors

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Under these plans every prisoner released in England and Wales would have their own mentor to help them rebuild their lives.  The plan would be coordinated by private and voluntary groups who would be paid if reoffending was reduced. The...

New taskforce takes on tax dodgers

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Monday 19th November 2012 saw HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) launch a taskforce to tackle tax cheats in the rental property sector in the South East of England. The taskforces are essentially specialist teams who target certain high risk trade sectors...

Council foots the bill for 'outrageous fly tipping'

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On the 23rd October 2012, traffic chaos was caused in the area of Lower Nazeing near Harlow, due to Laundry Lane being closed in both directions on Monday evening and Tuesday morning after motorists reported 7 tonnes of rubbish dumped in the middle of the...

Government keen to pursue "Swift Justice" pilot schemes

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The government are introducing these new measures following the response of the courts in the aftermath of the August 2011 riots.  Courts across England and Wales were open for longer hours, some courts even sitting at night in an attempt to deal with...

New proposal to cap unfair dismissal payouts

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Business Secretary, Vince Cable has put forward proposals for consultation to limit the amount of compensation that a worker can be awarded at an Employment Tribunal to a maximum of 12 months salary. Mr Cable wants to introduce this new proposed cap on...

Tax dodger ordered to pay £469,000

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A Berkshire property developer has been ordered to pay costs, after he failed to pay tax on money hidden in a foreign bank account. The man in question has already voluntarily paid just under £390,000 to HMRC before this, following a successful result...

Barclays fined over Libor rates

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Barclays has been fined £290m ($450m) after trying to manipulate a key lending rate between banks called the Libor rate. The case has once again raised the issue of bringing criminal prosecutions against the individual bankers...

New ECJ ruling brings changes to sickness and holiday entitlement

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The Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ) has ruled that if workers fall sick during the time they are taking their statutory annual leave they may take extra leave at a later date for the period they were sick whilst on leave. The period of...

Legal Services Board calls for further regulations

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Making a Will is one of the most important things you will do in your lifetime, to provide certainty for those left behind to know what you wanted them to do. In order for it to be of maximum assistance to your loved ones, it must be written in a way that is...

Dispute over control

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The Court of Appeal's judgment suggests that in certain circumstances the courts may be willing to order the disclosure of documents that are not physically within a litigant’s control.  The obligation to disclose During a dispute a party...

The NewBuy Scheme

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At present lenders require deposits of approximately 20% of the value of the purchase price before a mortgage will be granted. For many, providing this type of cash upfront is not possible. The Government therefore introduced the NewBuy scheme to encourage...

Supreme Court says NO to damages claims when disciplinary procedures breached.

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The result of the joined cases of Edwards v Chesterfield Royal Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Botham v Ministry of Defence1, will come as a relief to employers as it confirms that such errors will not give rise to a claim outside of unfair dismissal...

European Court of Justice rules concurrent use of the same Budweiser trade mark is valid.

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To prevent customers being confused as to the origin of goods or services traditionally no more than one identical or similar trade mark can be registered for the same goods or services. However in the European Court of Justice case C-482/09 the Court...

Increase in Statutory Payments Announcement.

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It is expected that from 9th April 2012 Statutory Maternity, Paternity, Additional Paternity, Adoption Pay and Maternity Allowance will increase from £128.73 to £135.45 per week; and Statutory sick pay will increase from £81.60 to...

Unfair double taxation is under the EU spotlight

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EU Commission launches consultation on ways to tackle cross border inheritance tax obstacles within the EU. European property owners are amongst those now waiting to hear the outcome of a consultation by the European Commission that aims to tackle unfair...

Decision Pending Construction from without prejudice agreements

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A pending decision from the Supreme Court could change the law regarding the permissibility of without prejudice negotiations being produced as evidence to the courts. Oceanbulk Shipping & Trading SA v TMT Asia Limited and others - Case Background The...

Government to introduce new leave rights that will provide greater flexibility for parents as to how they use maternity and paternity leave.

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Please note that this article is prepared with the aim of providing general information only, and does not constitute legal advice in relation to any particular situation. Government to introduce new leave rights that will provide greater flexibility for...

Important changes to the National Minimum Wage

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Important changes to the National Minimum Wage Important changes to the National Minimum Wage are set to come into force on 1 October, and a local solicitor is advising all businesses that employ low-paid people, or have staff who receive tips from...

January the most taxing month of the year

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January is never the best of times for self-assessment taxpayers such as the self-employed. This is the month when they not only have to pay the first instalment of their twice-yearly Income Tax and National Insurance contributions, but also face the final...