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"Drug errors in England cause appalling levels of harm and deaths"

Tim Edwards
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So says the Health Secretary, Mr Jeremy Hunt, following new data compiled by researchers drawn from Manchester, Sheffield and York universities. It is further reported that GPs, pharmacists, hospitals and care homes may be making 237 million errors a year...

National Minimum Wage increase

Laura Hill
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The new National Minimum Wage and the new National Living Wage, which will apply from 1 April 2018, have been announced by the government and, according to the Low Pay Commission, this is the largest increase for 18-20 year olds and 21-24 year olds in a...

Proposed clinical negligence reforms

Robert Dempsey
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Calls from health leaders in a letter to Justice Secretary David Gauke urged for reform to payments for negligence claims against the NHS.  In 2017, changes to the calculation used to work out how much a victim of negligence should receive upfront to...

Battery storage phenomenon predicted to hit the UK

Iain Hibbert
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In an interview with Business Green, MD of Chinese battery storage giant BYD (Build Your Dreams), Tom Zhao, says that making renewable energy more accessible is the key to growing the sector as a whole and he believes that the UK has great potential when it...

Major changes proposed to improve workers' rights

Laura Hill
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Last week, the government published its response to “Good Work: the Taylor Review of Modern Working Practices”. This independent review published in July made a series of recommendations designed to improve the working conditions of atypical...

Nip it in the bud

Phil Cookson
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What do you get when you cross a husband, a wife, a senior manager with 20 years’ service and an accusation of historic criminal activity? Answer: a management nightmare. Unfortunately these complex scenarios are a lot more common than you might...

Help for Headway: The Green Backyard project

Bede Finnigan
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Following a successful day working on The Green Backyard  garden project in conjunction with Headway Cambridgeshire , Roythornes’ Personal Injury department would like to highlight these two great charities to give them the recognition they...

Product Liability Claims

Tim Edwards
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The electrical manufacturer Whirlpool has again been in the news following a parliamentary report which claims that it has provided an “inadequate” response to defective tumble driers produced and sold over a period of more than 10 years. It is...

Planning Application Fee Increase

Charlotte Lockwood
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The Town and Country Planning (Fees for Applications, Deemed Applications, Requests and Site Visits) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2017 (Regulations) were made on 20 December 2017, essentially introducing a 20% increase in planning fees, and came into...

Rest periods during working hours

Laura Hill
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Regulation 12 of the Working Time Regulations 1998 (WTR) requires employers to give employees a rest break of not less than 20 minutes if a worker’s daily working time is more than six hours. It is important to ensure, therefore, that your business...

"Please hold on, the bus is about to move"

Bede Finnigan
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Following recent complaints to Transport for London, it is evident that the new procedures currently being trialled on London buses are not to everyone’s taste. But the question remains: where do individuals stand when injured as a result of a bus...

The truth about holiday sickness claims

Robert Dempsey
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In the wake of a significant case that saw a couple jailed for making fake holiday sickness claims the government is addressing the issue of food poisoning claims, however it’s important to put allegations of fraud into context. The recent case of...

2017 was the UK's "greenest" year for electricity

Iain Hibbert
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National Grid statistics show that, thanks to a boost in renewable power, the UK had its greenest year ever in 2017, breaking thirteen clean energy records. Overall in 2017, renewable energy sources outstripped coal plant production three-fold, beating the...

Powering past coal: what this means for the renewable energy sector

Iain Hibbert
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At the One Planet summit in Paris earlier this month, French president Emmanuel Macron led a meeting of minds from 50 countries to discuss worldwide action against climate change ahead of 2020, the year the Paris Agreement is due to come into force. One of...

On-farm flood defences - two recent cases

Julie Robinson
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Two 2017 cases are useful reminders of the limits to farmers’ freedom of movement when it comes to the building of flood defences on their land. In one case we see that  land ownership does not give you the right to refuse entry for approved...

The role of APR and BPR in estate planning

Ben Taylor
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As the dust settles following the Autumn Budget, in amongst the various documents released around the same time, HMRC published research on the use of Agricultural Property Relief (APR) and Business Property Relief (BPR), and taxpayers’ attitudes...

Are you GDPR ready?

Julia Seary
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The General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) come in to force in May 2018 and, despite the fact that they have been widely publicised since 2016, a recent survey identified that only 7% of business felt they were ‘very prepared’ for the...

Christmas comes early for first-time buyers

Nick McCarthy
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In last week’s Autumn Budget, Chancellor Phillip Hammond pulled out an early Christmas present from Santa’s sack, by removing and reducing Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) for first-time buyers with immediate effect. First-time buyers now purchasing...

Letting to a farm worker- what do I need to know?

Sarah Whitehurst
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We are still seeing examples of employers failing to serve the correct documentation before handing over the keys of a cottage to new farm workers. They think they are granting an assured shorthold tenancy (AST) and that they will be able to recover...

Bereavement Damages

Tim Edwards
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Bereavement damages have been in the spotlight again following the recent decision of the Court of Appeal in the case of Smith v Secretary of State for Justice. Bereavement awards in England and Wales are provided for under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976. The...

Tenancy reform

Julie Robinson
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The Tenancy Reform Industry Group (TRIG) has been meeting over the last few months to develop recommendations for changes that relate to both Agricultural Holdings Act (AHA) tenancies and farm business tenancies (FBTs). The Group picked up on themes from...

Interest rate increase - what it means for debt recovery

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On 2 November 2017 the Bank of England reversed the drop in interest rates which came into effect on 2 August 2016. This means the base interest rate is back up to 0.5%, a level first introduced in March 2009. What does this mean for your entitlement to...

Remember, remember the fifth of November...

Bede Finnigan
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As recently as 1959, it was illegal NOT to celebrate Bonfire Night in the UK, and with the big night fast approaching again, it is vitally important to appreciate the legal implications involved when using fireworks, sparklers or creating bonfires....

Repetitive strain could mean a claim

Bede Finnigan
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To mark the success of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents’ (RoSPA) annual month-long workplace safety campaign, #OSHtober , Roythornes is continuing to raise awareness of work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WRMSDs) and the effect...

Farmers benefit from diamond decision

Julia Seary
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The Commercial Agents (Council Directive) Regulations 1993 was implemented to clarify and protect the rights of commercial agents who engage with principals to sell products on their behalf.  Generally, commercial agents have the right to a compensation...

Pre-Action Protocol for Debt Claims

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Pre-Action Protocol for Debt Claims will come into effect on 1 October 2017 This Protocol applies to any business (including a sole trader or public body) claiming payment from an individual (including sole traders) and describes the conduct the court...

HM Courts and Tribunals Service launch a digital probate service

Esther Woodhouse
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An online service for selected personal applicants of ‘non-complex’ estates has, in fact, been available under a pilot scheme since November 2016.  The launch now invites all personal applicants to apply providing certain criteria are met:...

Community Infrastructure Levy and Rural Developments

Charlotte Lockwood
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Shruti Trivedi, Head of Planning at Roythornes recently delivered a planning update on the application of the Community Infrastructure Levy Regulations 2010 (as amended) (the Regulations). This prompted some interesting questions with regards to rural...

Nottingham court case likely to set a new precedent

Cristina Parla
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The outcome of a case where a minor was injured falling into a collapsed manhole cover in Nottingham is likely to set a precedent for future cases regarding disputes on the maintenance of private land. Acting on behalf of the child, who cannot be named...

The New HMRC Trusts Register

Rachael Crocker
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A new raft of anti-money laundering rules has important implications for all trusts, and trustees need to be aware of their new obligations. A new Trusts Register Individuals and trusts are subject to stringent anti-money laundering laws. The EU’s...

Employment tribunal and EAT fees declared unlawful

Laura Hill
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Earlier this month, the Supreme Court declared that fees charged in the Employment Tribunal (ET) and the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) are unlawful. Historically, claimants wishing to make a claim to the Employment Tribunal would have to pay an issue fee...

Planning obligations and appeals

Charlotte Lockwood
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A recent appeal decision serves as a salutary reminder that planning obligations submitted in support of development proposals need to be legally binding to ensure that they can be relied on in securing permission.  In this case, the lesson proved...

Avoid delays in registering your Lasting Power of Attorney - get the wording right

Gemma Hopper
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We have all experienced a delay in registering a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) which, in most cases, is purely down to the department trying to cope with the steady increase in applications; they no longer seem...

The risks of being a sole shareholder/director

Hope Clegg
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The risks of being a sole shareholder/director: Court provides a timely reminder of the need to review your company’s Articles of Association Are you a sole shareholder/director of your company? Do you have children, other family members or trusted...

Confirmation of the Nottingham HS2 Phase 2b Route

Charlotte Lockwood
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On 17 July 2017 the Secretary of State for Transport announced his decision on the safeguarded route for HS2 Phase 2b, from Crewe to Manchester and from the West Midlands to Leeds. This follows on from a consultation carried out on a number of route...

Continuation of the Court of Protection Transparency Pilot

Gemma Hopper
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Continuation of the Court of Protection Transparency Pilot helps families to understand the decisions being made on behalf of vulnerable persons As a solicitor specialising in the Court of Protection, I have spent a large part of my time in Court...

The future of wills

Elizabeth Young
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Roythornes is keenly watching developments in the sphere of wills and the results of the Law Commission’s recently launched consultation on their future. We have to agree that such an essential part of all of our lives, or more to the point, deaths is...

Tough luck for tough mudders?

Robert Dempsey
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Recently, mud runs, such as the fashionable ‘ Tough Mudder ’ event, are becoming increasingly popular around the UK with thousands of people signing up each year, meaning it’s even more imperative to ensure that both organisers and...

Mayor's Transport Strategy 2017

Cristina Parla
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On 21 June 2017 the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, published a draft of the Mayor’s Transport Strategy.  Essentially, his strategy focuses on the problems and difficulties Londoners face with congestion, emissions, noise pollution, personal safety...

Your inheritance questions answered

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If you have received an inheritance within the last two years it’s important to understand the tax implications your inheritance presents. What is a Deed of Variation? A Deed of Variation is a versatile legal document which enables beneficiaries to...

The bank of mum and dad - the future of property finance?

Sarah Banner
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This week, the Resolution Foundation published its report entitled “The generation of wealth: asset accumulation across and within cohorts” which looks at wealth, trends in wealth distribution and how that translates through generations and what...

Make digital work for your charity

Julia Seary
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We find that trustees are becoming more interested in how digital can create opportunities and add value to their charity - whether in terms of income generation, service enhancement or brand awareness.  In the ever-evolving digital world where...

Social Media and Family Proceedings

John Boon
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The recent judgment of Mr Justice Holman in the case of Re: T (a Child) [2017] EWFC 19 highlighted the possible benefits of social media within family proceedings.  In this particular case, Facebook was used in order to ascertain the whereabouts of a...

Indirect discrimination Supreme Court decision

Laura Hill
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The law in relation to indirect discrimination has come under review recently in the Supreme Court decisions of Essop and Others v. Home Office (UK Border Agency) and Naeem v. Secretary of State for Justice [2017] UKSC 27 . Indirect discrimination...

Agriculture remains one of the most dangerous sectors

Tamsyn Stuart
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Every employee has the right to work in a safe and healthy environment. All employers have a duty of care to ensure that their workplace is safe and employees are provided with the necessary equipment to carry out their duties safely. The HSE (Health and...

SPAR product recall

Victoria Walley
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On 15 May the Food Standards Agency issued a product recall of SPAR Chicken Tikka Chunks as it may have contained small pieces of glass. Product recall is a system of damage control for businesses when a fault with a product is identified. The recall...

KitKat decision highlights the need to protect assets early

Lizzie Walters
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In the latest court battle between Nestlé and Cadbury, the Court of Appeal has refused to allow Nestlé to trade mark the shape of its four-fingered KitKat bar. Last year Mr Justice Arnold, sitting in the High Court, ruled in favour of...

Trustees should be aware of the risks of ransomware attacks

Julia Seary
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The Charity Commission has reminded Charities of the need to follow the protection advice issued by the City of London Police and National Cyber Security Centre. The key protection messages for all charities are as follows: •Install system updates on...

What does the Prisons and Courts Bill mean for motorists?

Cristina Parla
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The government published the Prisons and Court Bill on 27 February 2017 which included provisions to introduce: fixed tariff compensation on road traffic accidents (whiplash and minor psychological injuries); a ban on pre-medical offers (road traffic...

The unseen work of charities and their trustees

Sarah Banner
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As a charity lawyer I never cease to be amazed by the number of charities operating in and around Lincolnshire. Just before Christmas my firm had the opportunity to talk to trustees and volunteers of a number of those charities. We talked about the new legal...