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Do liquidated damages for a construction delay always apply?

Sarah Canning
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Construction contracts often include a clause providing for liquidated damages for delay. This requires the contractor to pay a rate of pre-agreed delayed damages called “liquidated damages” to the customer / employer in such...

Money Laundering - Are you compliant?

Sarah Canning
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Sarah Canning outlines the possible fallout for Estate Agents who are not doing enough to comply with Anti-Money Laundering Legislation. 

Do I really have to mediate?

Sarah Canning
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With Mediation becoming a more familiar word in Dispute Resolution, Sarah Canning discusses the benefits and how it works.

Is Your Oral Contract Enforceable?

Sarah Canning
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The Supreme Court has overturned the decision of the Court of Appeal and found that an Oral Agreement between an Estate Agent and the Seller of a property was enforceable even though it did not expressly specify the event that triggered the Sellers...

Housing Market to have a new Housing Complaints Service

Sarah Canning
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Both homeowners and tenants will now be able to have access to a complaints scheme when things go wrong. This is the first such scheme for private lettings and requires all private landlords to join the housing redress scheme. There will be a fine of up...

Indemnity or Compensation - what is an agent entitled to on termination of their agency?

Christopher Buck
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An agent’s rights on termination of a commercial agency are extensive. The position is governed by the Commercial Agents (Council Directive) Regulations 1993 which impose strict obligations upon both a principal and agent. Unless certain regulations are disapplied under the terms of a formal agency agreement, then the repercussions of termination can be very expensive for a principal!

Google falls foul of General Data Protection Regulation

Christopher Buck
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Google has been issued with a hefty fine of £50 million by French regulators for General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) violations, the highest the GDPR fine to date! If you are a business that processes a lot of...

Supermac's bites back at McDonald's over trade mark dispute

Christopher Buck
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A recent decision of the European Union Intellectual Property Office (“EUIPO”) has seen McDonald’s lose its right to the infamous Big Mac trade mark. The dispute between Supermac's and McDonald’s began back in 2015, after...

Brexit-IN or OUT?

Liah De Freyne
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On June 2016 the world watched as the UK voted to leave the European Union (EU)., with a promise of a stronger more independent country, what has followed is 2 years of uncertainty and confusion about which way the country is headed. Likened to the...

"I have just separated - What should I do?"

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This is a question we face all the time.    The maxim “preserve assets and limit liabilities” from the point of separation is always a good starting point.  In some cases there is a need for immediate action to safeguard monies...

Do you know the rules for your staff Christmas Party?

Ben Stanton
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If you act like a Turkey at the Christmas Party, you could get stuffed; disciplinary issues and other issues that may present themselves The work Christmas party is often eagerly anticipated and a chance for employees to let their hair down. All too...

The incapacity crisis

Natasha Thorne
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Report by the SFE – ‘The incapacity crisis – a nation unprepared’ A recent study has been published by the Solicitors for the Elderly (SFE ) which warns that the UK is approaching an ‘incapacity crisis’. The recent...

The importance of making a Will discussed

Natasha Thorne
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What happens if you do not have a Will? Without a valid Will, the rules set out by government, known as the rules of intestacy, determine how your assets will be dealt with - regardless of any wishes you may have had. The most common misconception is...

Is your family home in your spouse's sole name?

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Sometimes there is a huge gap between accepting a marriage is at an end and doing something about it. One factor that might prevent one spouse from “getting the ball rolling” with the divorce is because the family home is in your...

LPAs for Company Directors and Partnerships

Helen Taylor TEP
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Have you thought about what would happen to your business if you became unable to make decisions because of an accident or unexpected illness? Imagine what would happen if creditors couldn't be paid or contracts couldn't be signed.  Many...

Think before you ink - but it's just a copy, right?

Christopher Buck
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Tattoos and copyright In July 2015, a YouGov poll identified that nearly one fifth of the British public had at least one tattoo. Of that 19%, 14% of the public with tattoos confirmed that they regretted at least one. Tattoos are becoming more and more...

OPG refund for Power of Attorneys - Have you claimed yours?

Helen Taylor TEP
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The Office of Public Guardian (OPG) has announced that it will be providing refunds for Powers of Attorney that were registered between 1 April 2013 and 31 March 2017. The OPG estimates that there are over one million refunds due, but with the number of...

What is a Pre-Nup and why should you consider having one?

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A pre-nup (short for pre-nuptial agreement)  is a document that can be drawn up prior to marriage to record a couple’s intentions as to what should happen to their assets and income in the unfortunate event that the marriage fails. Reality is...

Could lifetime gifting to avoid Inheritance Tax have risks?

Helen Taylor TEP
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Gifting inheritance early to children is becoming ever more popular by parents. For some, it is seen as the perfect way of addressing two birds with one stone: helping their children get onto the property ladder and reducing the amount of Inheritance Tax...

World Mental Health Day

Helen Taylor TEP
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10th October 2018 is World Mental Health Day – a day to raise awareness about mental health issues, services available and things you can do to help yourself in these situations. Research suggests that at least 1 in 4 of us will experience mental...

What is the role of a mediator?

Sarah Canning
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Unlike other forms of dispute resolution, a mediator does not decide a case. It is for the parties involved to agree their own resolution. The parties are responsible for the terms of any agreement and it is their choice as to whether or not the matter is...

Top Tips for Contract Disputes

Sarah Canning
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Disputes happen, but it is how the initial stages of the dispute are handled that can impact upon how quickly and cost effectively you can resolve the problem.         When you become aware of a dispute, the following can make all...

Business Injunction? What you need to know

Sarah Canning
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An injunction is a Court Order which stops a company or person doing something specific. It might be something that they have already done that must be rectified or are about to do and you wish to prevent it happening. The party breaching an injunction can...

Overage - Building Regs is the costly dark horse

Jo Pusey
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O verage agreements are entered into between a Seller and Buyer where there is a reasonable expectation that the land has the potential to be redeveloped or for planning permission to be granted for development. The Seller is then entitled to a slice of this...

What happens at a mediation?

Sarah Canning
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Mediation is a flexible process and the mediator will guide the parties through the process in a way to enable the parties the best possible opportunity of resolving their dispute. Whilst there is no set structure or order, there are some keys stages which...

Tenancy Eviction - The Accelerated Procedure

Amy-Jane Westaway
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The Accelerated Procedure is available for Landlords trying to regain possession of their Property following the expiry of a valid Section 21 Notice served upon their Tenant. This procedure can prove a much faster and cost effective alternative to the...

"That's Nacho trade mark" "I don't know what you are Taco 'bout"

Christopher Buck
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Salsas cease and desist letter Salsas, a restaurant chain with more than 43 franchises across Australia, registered the “Taco Tuesday” mark in 2011. The Mexican restaurant has now sent a cease and desist letter to the Reverence Hotel...

Cyber threats and the GDPR

Christopher Buck
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Cyber attacks Throughout the course of the last year, we saw a number of cyber threats and ransom driven hacks on large scale databases. In fact this time last year, the WannaCry ransomware was wreaking havoc in the NHS database, amongst others. In a...

Dr Dre, "I need a Doctor" - just not Dr Drai

Christopher Buck
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Dr Dre v Dr Dra Dr Dre has recently lost his legal battle against Pennsylvania based gynaecologist Dr Drai. Dr Dre has unsuccessfully tried to argue that the OBGYN’s name is confusingly similar to his own and his accompanying trade mark. In 2015,...

What is a 'breach' of contract and what can you do to remedy it?

Sarah Canning
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A Contract forms the base of almost every business relationship, whether that be for the sale and purchase of goods, provision of services, or an agreement between Franchisor and Franchisee. The Contract between the parties outlines acts each party shall...

Are you on auto-pilot when it comes to pension auto-enrolment?

Ben Stanton
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Automatic enrolment To quote the TV adverts, “You can’t ignore the Workplace Pension”. Essentially, every employer with at least one staff member is legally required to automatically enrol ‘eligible’ employees into a...

The right to be forgotten triumphs over Google

Christopher Buck
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The right to be forgotten The right to be forgotten is essentially being entitled to having actioned your request to have your personal information removed from the search engine. The latest Google transparency report has confirmed that 89% of such...

Are you ready for the GDPR?

Christopher Buck
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With a little under a month until the General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) becomes law in the U.K., we again outline the who, what, where, when and why to  help you to achieve compliance and continue not to fall foul of the...

Tough negotiations? Be creative and bring in a Mediator

Sarah Canning
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Tough negotiations? Be creative and bring in a Mediator Negotiations whether as part of a merger, an acquisition or a goods and services contract can involve challenging conversations particularly when the terms are being negotiated. With so much at...

Top 10 things to know about Business mediation

Sarah Canning
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What do you know about mediation? Did you k now that it is becoming much more prevalent when looking at alternative dispute resolution options and it is even being set as the first option by the Courts to come to an agreement prior to heading to Court to...

To mediate or not to mediate? That is the question

Sarah Canning
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The choice is yours. Decide how to settle a dispute on your terms or pass the decision to someone who doesn’t know anything about your business. What do you do? The majority of us would want to take control of our future and make a decision based upon...

Landlords - Don't be caught out by invalid Notices!

Sarah Canning
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Many Landlords are finding themselves caught out by serving invalid Notices on their Tenants when wanting to regain possession of their property. As a result, they are experiencing severe delays in recovering possession of their property. Great care should...

Could you have accidentally left your pension to your Ex?

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It is very important for people to ensure that their pension death benefits are left to the correct person when they die. Many people are overlooking to change the “expression of wishes” paperwork after they separate from a partner and many...

The Importance of a Financial Order on Divorce

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As Family Lawyers we frequently hear the same thing from divorcing clients in that they have agreed the financial aspects of the marriage so do not need advice or the expense of additional legal or court fees. With the ever-increasing desire for a...

What is a no-fault divorce?

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Current divorce laws are based on legislation introduced in 1973. Those wishing to seek a divorce have to claim that their marriage has broken down irretrievably. That irretrievable breakdown has to be based on one of 5 facts namely adultery, behaviour,...

Are employers liable for employee's data protection breaches?

Sarah Canning
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On 1 December 2017, the supermarket Morrisons was found vicariously liable for the actions of a disgruntled employee, who posted personal data of almost 100,000 employees on a file-sharing website. The claim was brought by over 5500 employees and is...

Would you want to be kept alive against your will?

Helen Taylor TEP
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Brenda Grant made an Advance Directive, commonly known as a Living Will, stating she feared degradation and indignity more than death after seeing her own mother lose her independence through dementia.  She did not tell her family about it but correctly...

Dispute between Dyson and former Chief Executive, Max Conze

Christopher Buck
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The dispute between James Dyson and Max Conze It appears that Dyson are intending to sue their former CEO, Max Conze, for leaking closely guarded secrets. Max was CEO for Dyson and headed the company from 2011 to 2017. He stepped down last month, in...

Will the Woof-Tang-Clan be brought to heel?

Christopher Buck
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American rap group, Wu-Tang-Clan, is currently looking to pursue a New York dog walking group, Woof-Tang-Clan, for breach of copyright and Trade Marks. The group claims that Woof-Tang-Clan’s attempt to trademark their name is in breach of their rights....

Paying a relative's care home fees using their online banking system is probably a criminal offence

Kathryn Thornewill TEP
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Accordingly to a law firm in London, RadcliffesLeBrasseur, using a relative’s online bank account information to arrange payment of their care home fees, even if it is done in good faith with the account holder's permission, is probably a criminal...

Billionaire Property Developer Claims He Was Never Married In An Attempt To Prevent Wife's Claim On His Fortune

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A billionaire property developer has tried to protect his £1.1bn fortune from a claim by his estranged wife by claiming that they were never married. He has claimed that his marriage was based on a fake certificate which they obtained in order that...

Children in the middle

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As a Family Lawyer and Accredited Family and Child Inclusive Mediator I am often asked to advise or provide information on children stuck in the middle of separating or separated families. Conversations are usually with a parent or parents although quite...

English marriage law bias

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Under existing English marriage laws, minority faith marriages should be registered.   This would mean that couples who have a religious ceremony have to follow it up with a civil wedding in order that it is recognised as legally...