New Specialist Divorce Financial Courts

By | family, Legal Updates | No Comments

Until now, cases about the financial side of a divorce or civil partnership dissolution have been decided by District Judges with a variety of expertise, not always in matrimonial finances. This has led to frustration being expressed by the judges as well as the parties involved; a great deal of preparation is often undertaken in the lead up to a hearing and, particularly for those involving complex and high net worth assets, it can be unnerving for a case to…

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Holiday pay claims – an update

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Background Under the Working Time Regulations 1998 (WTR) holiday may only be taken in the leave year in respect of which it is due (regulation 13(9)). A worker must therefore take their holiday within the leave year or it is lost (with some exceptions for workers on certain kinds of leave, such as long term sick leave). If an employee or worker has a holiday claim they can do the following: ·         Bring a claim under the WTR to be…

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Cohabitation Awareness Week

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This year the family lawyers organisation Resolution are trying to raise awareness of the issue of cohabitation and the absence of any laws to protect those who are cohabiting but not married or in a civil partnership. The simple and unpleasant fact is that there is no law in place that protects someone who is “just” cohabiting (as opposed to being married or in a civil partnership), no matter how long you have lived together. There is quite literally no…

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Living Wills

By | Legal Updates, Wills | No Comments

You may have heard people talk about “living wills”.  Whereas a standard Will deals with who inherits your money and property on your death, a living will can be used to make decisions in advance about your wishes regarding particular medical treatment or care whilst you are still living, in case you are unable to make the decision when the time comes.  For this reason, living wills are often known by lawyers as “advance decisions”. The most common reason to…

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Conveyancing – Frequently Asked Questions

By | Residential Property | No Comments

We take a look below at some FAQs, which we hope will help to explain the Conveyancing Process. I have sold privately without an estate agent, what needs to happen to start the process? Both parties will need to instruct a solicitor or conveyancer and pass on their details, in order to get the process started. You will need to let your solicitor know the agreed price and any other terms which form part of the sale, such as any…

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How do you protect your property from fraud?

By | Legal Updates, Residential Property | No Comments

Of late, we are sadly reading reports in the press of more and more instances of property fraud. This is where fraudsters sell or mortgage properties which they do not own and abscond with the proceeds.  The Land Registry have confirmed that the properties most vulnerable to fraud are: properties which are not lived in by the registered owner (such a buy to let property or empty properties), properties which are not mortgaged properties which have been in the same…

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Voluntary overtime and holiday pay

By | Employment, Legal Updates | No Comments

The Working Time Directive (WTD) and therefore the Working Time Regulations (WTR), which implements the WTD for the UK, states that workers must have the right to paid holiday.  The aim with respect to this paid holiday is to ensure workers do not suffer a disadvantage on taking their holiday.  This was seen in the cases around commission which found that commission payments should be reflected in holiday pay. With respect to overtime, when working out someone’s weekly pay you would look to…

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I own a business with my spouse and we are separating: what do we do?

By | family, Legal Updates | No Comments

Many couples going through a divorce have assets to divide between them, such as a family home, investments and pensions. However, often in our work matters are complicated by the fact that the parties own a business together. Very few people would choose to run a business with someone they have just separated from, yet a business is not always easy to value and cannot necessarily just be sold. On the contrary, a family business may need to continue operating…

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Workplace stress – employer’s liability

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‘Work related stress’ as a reason for absence can send chills through any HR manager because such sickness absence is not easily cured with a week of rest or a dose of antibiotics.  It requires careful handling, patience and time. Although stress is not an illness in itself, but a state of mind, it can lead to mental illnesses and physical ailments. Stress is often brought about in the workplace due to some kind of change.  For example, that might…

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Injury to feelings award: an update

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The Equality Act 2010 prohibits discrimination in respect of the nine “protected characteristics” of age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex, and sexual orientation. If a claimant succeeds in a discrimination claim, an employment tribunal may: Order the respondent to pay compensation. This is uncapped. Make an appropriate recommendation aimed at reducing the adverse effect of the discrimination. Make a declaration as to the rights of the claimant. Compensation for discrimination can…

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