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Post-holiday quarantine: your rights at work

Maureen Cawthorn
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Are you returning from Portugal and facing the prospect of quarantining? Perhaps you're mulling over the implications of jetting off on a foreign holiday? Make sure you understand the implications of post-holiday quarantining on your employment and...

Uber loses Supreme Court case in gig economy test case

James Hodgson
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In a landmark ruling that has implication for millions working in the gig economy, Uber has lost its Supreme Court  fight over drivers' rights. After a 4-year legal battle, the Supreme Court ruled against the taxi app company, concluding their...

Guide for employers: the pitfalls to avoid when using settlement agreements

James Hodgson
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If you're an employer and need to use a settlement agreement to end a long standing dispute, here is my guide to avoiding the most common pitfalls. Understand the fundamental purpose of settlement agreements Under the terms of...

2021 employment law changes: an overview for employers

James Hodgson
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Give yourself a head start in 2021 by planning ahead for these forthcoming changes to employment law. Coronavirus The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is open until the end of April 2021. As an employer, you only need to contribute National Insurance and...

2021: what next for house prices?

Laura Kurowski
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  According to building society Nationwide, house prices climbed 7.5% last year, the highest growth in UK house prices for six years. Why was demand for property so high in 2020? Buoyed by a range of Government policy measures, demand for housing...

Do-Not-Attempt-Resuscitate (DNAR) orders were wrongly used

Hayley Meskimmon
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The findings of a recent Quality Care Commission (CQC) report have highlighted that during the early weeks of the Coronavirus pandemic, Do-Not-Attempt-Resuscitate (DNAR) orders were wrongly used.    Widely condemned by the CQC and medical bodies,...

Government Winter Plan for COVID-19

James Hodgson
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Earlier this week the Government announced plans for managing the coronavirus pandemic through winter. The 64-page document contains important information on how businesses and individuals will emerge from the current national lock down on 2 December 2020....

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: What Next

James Hodgson
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The  Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme  (JRS) ends on 31 October 2020, when it will be replaced by the  Job Support Scheme which aims to protect “viable” jobs. What are the main implications for employers and employees? In the...

Changes to the Job Support Scheme - announced on 23 October 2020

James Hodgson
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Today the Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced an update to the new Job Support Scheme (to be known as the 'Open' Scheme in order to distinguish it from the Scheme provided for businesses legally required to close). The new support includes a...

Job Retention Bonus - Guidance for Employers

James Hodgson
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The Government has recently published guidance for employers about the Job Retention Bonus. This is a one-off £1,000 (taxable) payment for each eligible employee furloughed and kept in continuous employment until 31 January 2021. The bonus can be...

Post-holiday quarantine? Know your rights at work

Maureen Cawthorn
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If you’re planning to jet off for some last minute summer sun, you might be considering the implications of self-isolating when you return to the UK. Before you book that last minute getaway, it’s essential to understand the implications of...

10 June 2020: deadline for new entrants to the furlough scheme

Maureen Cawthorn
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Today -10 June 2020 -  is the last day employers can furlough staff who have not already been furloughed through the coronavirus job retention scheme. From 1 July 2020 employers may only claim for employees they have already claimed for;...

Judge rules Sally Challen can inherit husband's estate

Penny Manock
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A abused woman who won an appeal over her conviction for murdering her controlling husband can now inherit his estate, a judge has ruled. Sally Challen was given a life sentence in 2011 after being convicted of murdering her husband in 2010....

COVID-19 Secure Workplace Guidance

Maureen Cawthorn
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To support businesses and employees in re-opening workspaces and returning to work, the Government has now published a series of guides to making workplaces ‘COVID secure’. Eight sector-specific guides have been produced. These are for: ...

Government Covid-19 Recovery Strategy

Maureen Cawthorn
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The Government has now published its plan to bring England out of the current Coronavirus lockdown. The proposals state: “For the foreseeable future, workers should continue to work from home rather than their normal physical...

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

Andrew Crabtree
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Following the launch of the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), small and medium-sized businesses can now apply for finance to help deal with operating costs and help to maintain cash flow.  Is my...

Coronavirus and Commercial Rent Payments

Laura Kurowski
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Commercial tenants who are unable to pay their rent due to Coronavirus will be protected from eviction. Most leases contain provisions which permit a landlord to terminate the tenancy if the tenant fails to pay rent for a period after it is due (usually 14...

Government announces further support for the self-employed

Laura Kurowski
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On 27 March 2020, the Government announced their intention to provide further support for the self-employed in the form of a taxable cash grant. The scheme allows individuals to claim a taxable grant worth 80% of their trading profits up to a maximum of...

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme - further details announced

Maureen Cawthorn
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The Government has now published additional information about Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (the Furlough Scheme). At present the details represent guidance for HMRC; whether legislation follows remains to be seen. We recommend you read the full guidance...

Emergency Legislation for Coronavirus

James Hodgson
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The Government has recently passed all stages of its emergency bill through the House of Commons. The bill has cleared the House of Lords, and is expected to become law later today. The bill provides the Government with wide-ranging powers...

How Coronation Street is shining a light on domestic abuse

Clive Masters
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One of the questions I have started to ask clients when they first come to me for advice about domestic abuse is “Do you watch Coronation Street?” This is because one of the current story lines concerns the character Yasmeen Metcalfe being the...

Coronavirus COVID-19: the latest guidance for businesses and individuals

Andrew Crabtree
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  SUPPORT FOR BUSINESSES Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme HMRC will set up a new online portal so that all UK employers will be eligible for assistance where an employee has been designated as a ‘furloughed worker.’ HMRC will reimburse...

Coronavirus COVID-19: guidance for employers

James Hodgson
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All employers have a statutory duty of care for their employee’s health and safety and to provide a safe place to work. If you’re an employer, here’s what you need to know. How can I prevent the spread of infection in my business? The...

Corona Virus / COVID19 - Our Approach

Maureen Cawthorn
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Coronavirus is worrying for all of us and while we are trying our best to take a business as usual approach we have had to make some adjustments for the protection of our staff and clients, which we hope you will understand, so that we can continue to offer...

How new legislation aims to protect victims from stalkers

Clive Masters
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On 20 th January 2020, Stalking Protection Orders came into effect. These were introduced by the Stalking Protection Act 2019 to protect victims from harassment or intimidation from strangers or non-family members. Under this new legislation, the...

Ruling in ethical veganism case could have implications for employers

James Hodgson
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In the most recent ruling in a high profile ethical veganism case, the judge has decided that ethical veganism is a protected belief. Eariler this month the judge in the case of Jordi Casamitjana v The League Against Cruel Sports ruled that ethical veganism...

How to be an executor of a will

Heather Nuttall
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If someone asks you to be the executor of their will, following their death there are several things you’ll need to do. Here’s an overview to help you fulfil your responsibilities as an executor. What is an executor? An executor is legally...

What to do when someone dies

Hayley Meskimmon
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Managing someone’s affairs when they die is something many of us face at some point in our lives. The process of administering a deceased person’s estate involves organising their money, possessions and other assets and distributing them as...

How to manage someone's affairs when they die

Heather Nuttall
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Managing someone’s affairs when they die is something many of us face at some point in our lives. The process of administering a deceased person’s estate - known as probate - involves organising their money, possessions and other assets and...

The Incapacity Crisis

Hayley Meskimmon
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Chances are that many of us will face conditions which limit our ability to make decisions in the future. When someone loses their capacity to take decisions, families and professionals can struggle to determine what they might have wanted to happen in terms...

89-year-old awarded £200,000 in age discrimination case

James Hodgson
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An 89-year-old former medical secretary has won £200,000 in compensation, making her the oldest person in the UK to win an age discrimination case. Eileen Jolly was unfairly dismissed from her post at the Royal Berkshire Hospital in 2017 (then aged...

Problems at work? Here's what you need to know about settlement agreements

James Hodgson
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If you've been experiencing long-standing problems at work, a settlement agreement could provide a clean break for you and your employer. A settlement agreement is a legally binding contract that waives an employees' rights to make a...

Why we should all plan in case we lose mental capacity

Heather Nuttall
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According to The Alzheimer's Society, there are 850,000 people with dementia in the UK, with numbers set to rise to over 1 million by 2025. 1 in 6 people over the age of 80 have dementia and 225,000 will develop dementia this year. That's one every...

How to protect your land and property from fraud

Laura Kurowski
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We are often asked how to protect property from being fraudulently sold or mortgaged. This can be of particular concern if: your identity has been stolen you rent your property you live abroad the property is empty the property is not mortgaged the...

What to do if you are involved in a road traffic accident

Nick Berry
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None of us expects to be involved in an accident yet sadly, road traffic accidents ( RTAs) happen every day - whether they are our fault or someone else's. Whether it's a near miss, a minor prang or a serious crash, quite...

Government announces protection for buyers of new homes

Melanie Leadbitter
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The Secretary of Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government has announced that all new build housing will need to be sold as a freehold property. Following a speech at the Chartered Institute of Housing Conference on 27 June 2019, James...

Do grandparents have rights?

Penny Manock
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These days grandparents often play a huge role in their grandchildren’s lives, frequently providing child care. Sadly, when parents break up, many grandparents worry that contact with their grandchildren could be affected. If you have found...

Do godparents have rights?

Hayley Meskimmon
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If you're thinking of appointing godparents ( or have been asked to become a godparent), it's important to understand your legal position, should anything happen to prevent parents from caring for the child themselves. What rights does a...

How to contest a Will

Nick Berry
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If you believe someone’s will is wrong or that the will has not been correctly implemented, you may have cause to contest their will or make a claim against their estate. Here’s a step-by-step guide to contesting a will and submitting a...

Council tax discounts for the severely mentally impaired

Lauren Allette
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This week saw the issue of unclaimed 'severely mentally impaired' (SMI) council tax discounts back in the news. According to Money Saving Expert's Martin Lewis, thousands of 'severely mentally impaired' people who are...

Is it time your business had a health check?

Andrew Crabtree
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For all businesses the financial year end and start of a new tax year often brings tax efficiencies into sharp focus. This sort of ‘house-keeping’ is a good way to maximise profits yet there are many other ‘health checks’ directors...

Could you be eligible for a refund on a Lasting Power of Attorney?

Heather Nuttall
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If you have taken out a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) in the past five years, you might be eligible for a Lasting Power of Attorney fee refund. Between 2013 and 2017 almost two million people were overcharged by the Office of the Public...

Demand for good quality rental homes remains high

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According to the recently released English Private Landlords Survey , there are 25% more rented properties in England now than there were in 2010. With 4.5 million homes now in the private rented sector, it’s becoming more and more important to...

Stamp Duty abolished for first-time shared ownership buyers

Laura Kurowski
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In yesterday's Budget, the Chancellor announced that Stamp Duty Land Tax relief will be extended to first time buyers purchasing shared ownership homes valued up to £500,000. Buyers will be exempt from this tax, which has been...

Top tips if your employer offers you a settlement agreement

James Hodgson
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Problems at work? If your employer offers you a settlement agreement, here are five things you need to know. Make sure your settlement is put in writing Settlement Agreements are legally binding contracts and must relate to a particular complaint or...

Settlement agreements can resolve long standing problems at work

James Hodgson
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Settlement Agreements came into effect on 29 th July 2013 and are legally binding contracts which can be used to end an employment relationship on agreed terms.  Settlement Agreements are often used to resolve ongoing disputes between an employer and...

Long awaited reforms could signal 'no fault' divorce

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Last week the government signalled the long-awaited reform of divorce laws by potentially removing the element of ‘fault’. The Justice Secretary confirmed his intention that couples wanting to divorce should benefit from a less...

How to file a complaint about discrimination or unfair treatment at work

James Hodgson
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Making a complaint to your employer about discriminatory or unfair treatment at work can be a risky business. If you’ve been passed over for promotion or have simply had enough of lewd comments from colleagues should you consider filing a grievance? ...

Why we are backing Brighouse BID

Maureen Cawthorn
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If you’re a business based in Brighouse, you’ll know the Brighouse Business Improvement District (BID) initiative is gathering pace. Based on the results of their recent survey, the BID team are now developing a business plan for a potential...

Working in hot temperatures - what are my rights?

James Hodgson
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The recent heatwave has sparked a series of questions about working in high temperatures. Our employment law specialist James Hodgson offers some advice for employers and employees. In the UK there is no maximum temperature that a workplace is allowed to...