Latest Legal News

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Many businesses supply cars to their employees for business use. The regime under which benefits in kind are taxed is well known by most company accountants. However, one such must have been surprised when HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) sought to levy a...
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The respective rights of children and their parents has long been a tricky subject for the courts. A recent case on this topic involved a couple's adopted 16-year-old child, who was born female but wished to change gender and attended the Tavistock Gender...
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When a sports website was found to be providing unauthorised video clips of international cricket matches, the England and Wales Cricket Board and Sky UK Limited – to whom certain broadcast rights had been exclusively licensed – took a dim view...
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In a decision that clarifies a problem area of the law and will be required reading for commercial property professionals, the High Court has ruled that it is not legally possible for a tenant to validly assign a lease to a guarantor of that lease. The...
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Precision is important, as a recent tax case shows. It involved a claim for entrepreneur's relief (ER) by a businessman who had sold his shares in his company. The practical effect of a successful claim for ER is that the rate of Capital Gains Tax (CGT)...
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The breakdown of a relationship is sadly often accompanied by dispute over the ownership of once shared possessions. However, one High Court case vividly shows why it is nearly always sensible to seek compromise with the benefit of legal advice, rather than...
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Increasing public disquiet over the use of 'tax haven' companies and trusts to disguise the beneficial ownership of businesses and properties has led to the Government taking steps to improve the transparency of ownership. Such arrangements are often used...
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One of the ways by which a business can obtain recompense for the breach of its intellectual property (IP) rights is to make the infringing organisation account to it for any profit that they have made. This sounds all well and good, but it can be...
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When is a commercial lease surrendered? In one guideline case, the High Court has ruled that neither returning the keys, nor changing the locks, nor putting a property on the market effects a surrender. The decision had the effect of leaving a tenant...
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When a creditor appointed two 'informal' debt collectors to collect money due from a debtor, the tactics they used resulted in them being given prison terms by the Court of Appeal. A landscape gardener was beset by financial problems and one of his...
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Divorce cases involving the very rich are over-represented in court reports for the simple reason that where the family is very wealthy, the costs of arguing over the division of the assets are deemed to be worth incurring, which may not be the case for...
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Have you ever been out and had a cup of coffee with someone else, who paid and then offered you the VAT receipt 'so you can get the VAT back'? This common offer shows, at best, a lack of understanding about how the recovery of input VAT (the VAT you have...
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Deciding on a business name and URL for a website can be one of the most important steps a business takes – but it is essential to take professional advice to ensure that you do not step on others' toes in doing so. In one case, a car manufacturer came...
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The Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) was introduced as a means of raising cash from developers to fund public projects. However, it is not always welcome to those who have to pay it and, in one High Court case, a shopping centre owner succeeded in...
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Officialdom is a necessary, if occasionally irritating, fact of life, but one case has shown that an overzealous application of the rules can be beaten with tenacity and good legal advice. It involved an award-winning flower dealer, which had almost 1,500...
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The voices of children will always be heard by family judges in care proceedings, but they are not always decisive and can be outweighed by other factors. In one case, a boy's vociferous wish to live in England with his mother was overruled by a judge who...
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HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) know that 'cash trades' are often susceptible to a suppression of takings and regularly target cash traders for tax enquiries. Where HMRC's suspicions are confirmed and the evasion of tax is significant, a criminal prosecution...
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The owners of two emblematic brands have lost their claims to Intellectual Property (IP) protection lately, in cases which highlight the need to exercise careful thought in the formulation of trade mark applications. The first is the well-known London black...
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Divorces are very seldom totally amicable, but letting squabbles over the terms under which a marriage is dissolved run on and on can be ruinous, as a recent case shows. It involved a once successful businessman who was said to have been left with less than...
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Contracts have to be reasonable to be enforceable, and that is one good reason why professional drafting is essential. In a case which clearly illustrates that point, the High Court has ruled that a clause which required notification of defects in building...
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Everyone knows that the corporate veil has the advantage of shielding directors from personal liability. However, far fewer people are aware of its downsides. In one case which illustrates this point , a businessman who dealt with a bank entirely through...
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There is a common but incorrect belief that where a taxpayer incurs a trading loss, that can always be set against their other income to reduce the Income Tax they would otherwise pay. The ability to set off losses against profits is the norm and there are...
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Intellectual property (IP) rights are fiercely protected by the courts, and the consequences of breaching them can be severe indeed. In one case, a company which profited from infringing a patent in respect of a novel type of calliper used in racing car disc...
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Adjudication and arbitration are methods often used in the construction industry in the hope that they will achieve speedier and less costly dispute resolution than the use of litigation. However, this is not always the case and adjudicators are used to...
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Business relationships sometimes end badly, but the duties that partners owe to look after each other's interests continue until formal dissolution. In one case, two couples who set up a private car hire and chauffeur business lost sight of that principle as...