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Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreements

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 possession in due course without too much trouble. Instead, there is a good chance that they will have inadvertently granted an assured agricultural occupancy which enjoys greater protection.

If, as an employer, you want to be sure not to grant a tenancy with enhanced protection, you need to serve a “Form 9” landlord’s notice on your prospective tenant.

De-regulation is not the name of the game when it comes to letting a house to a farm worker. We’ve condensed the various rules, spread across different pieces of legislation, into a checklist for farm employers, set out below.

Checklist for assured shorthold tenancy agreements

  • Have you served a Form 9 landlord’s notice on the proposed tenant before the commencement of the AST and before the proposed tenant goes into occupation?
  • Have you given the tenant a copy of any inventory or report of condition that has been prepared?
  • Have you given the tenant a copy of the gas safety certificate (if applicable) and energy performance certificate?
  • Have you provided the tenant with a copy of the Government’s ‘How to Rent Guide’?
  • Have you given the tenant a record of any electrical safety inspections which have been carried out? By law all landlords are required to ensure that all wiring, installations and any electrical appliances they supply are safe. Checks every five years are recommended.
  • If the tenant has paid a tenancy deposit, have you protected the deposit and provided the tenant with information about the deposit protection?
  • Have you installed a smoke alarm on every floor used as living accommodation and a carbon monoxide detector in any room with a solid fuel burning appliance (if used as living accommodation)?
  • Have you checked the smoke alarms are in working order on the first day of the tenancy?
  • Have you undertaken the Right to Rent checks on the tenant, any adult occupier and any children over the age of 18 and kept a record?

If you would like further information about housing farm workers, contact Sarah Whitehurst on 01775 842508

 

Government decide Inheritance Tax staying as is and Capital Gains Tax to be refined

Ben Taylor
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The Treasury has written to the Office of Tax Simplification (OTS) in response to its second report on Inheritance Tax (IHT) and on its two Capital Gains Tax (CGT) reports. The second report on IHT had the aim of investigating and commenting on the...

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Jak Ward
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I have encountered a fair number of new enquiries recently where the obvious first step to take is to apply to enter a caveat at the Probate Registry. I, therefore, felt that it would be a topical yet timely reminder of what they are, why they can be useful,...

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Jak Ward
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When a person dies leaving no will, they are said to have died intestate. As they have not provided directions as to how they wish their assets to be dealt with, their estate is shared out in accordance with a set of legal principles known as “the...

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Jak Ward
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The eagerly awaited Court of Appeal judgment in Hirachand was handed down last week. When this issue crops up on a case, I find that it is incredibly difficult for one to grapple one way or the other, let alone second-guess which way the judiciary are going...

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Jak Ward
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Since the emergence of covid-19 in March 2020, every industry in the UK has faced challenges. Some have seen their development and growth thwarted, whilst others have shone. We’ve hopefully seen the back of the worst of it. I’m now at the...

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Shruti Trivedi
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The government’s new Environment Bill proposes a range of ambitious measures to address biodiversity loss, responding to the need to halt species decline by 2030. While driven by an essential requirement to leave the planet in a better condition than...

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Esther Woodhouse
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After death, there is often a need for your Personal Representatives to apply to the Probate Registry for a Grant of Representation.  The Grant confirms the Personal Representatives’ authority to administer the estate which is needed to collect...

Should we discuss inheritance?

Ben Taylor
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We can often find discussing money matters, like inheritance, a little uncomfortable. However, in some cases it is quite common and, as in my experience, we are starting to observe a changing attitude towards talking about property, finances, and death. ...

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Shola Khan
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With the end of the furlough scheme, there is no doubt that people might be re-thinking their working arrangements, whether that be working from home or a hybrid between working from home and in the office. Please note that this note does not cover...

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Rebecca Ironmonger
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In April this year, we considered the proposed changes to the regulations surrounding animal welfare in transport contained in the government consultation. Last month, the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (“DEFRA”) published...

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Joseph Stoehr
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Rebecca Ironmonger
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For many farmers, the spreading of manure or sludge from water sewage treatment plants is an essential part of the process for preparing soil for crops and for disposing of excess manure which they do not have the capacity to store. The Reduction and...

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Ben Taylor
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Catherine Rickett
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In May, it hit the news that the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, had become the subject of a County Court Judgment for a debt of £535. However, before questions about what would happen if bailiffs turned up at Number 10 could be answered, Downing...

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Rebecca Ironmonger
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From 1 October 2021, the Food Information (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2019, more widely known as Natasha’s Law, will come into force. Natasha’s Law was introduced into Parliament as a result of tragic deaths due to allergy sufferers’...

How to Serve & Enforce a County Court Judgment

Martin Spencer
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Getting a County Court Judgment (CCJ) is an important step in the debt recovery process and is often a relief to creditors. It is an official confirmation that the debtor owes money and must repay. However, getting the CCJ does not mean that the debtor will...

Five reasons to outsource your debt recovery

Martin Spencer
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Are your debtors giving you excuse after excuse to avoid making payment? This could be having a detrimental effect on the cashflow of your business, especially in the current climate throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are five reasons for you to...

Do you need to appoint an Authorised Representative to sell products into the EU?

Julia Seary
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With Regulation (EU) 2019/1020 coming into force, from 16 July 2021 every business from outside the EU selling products directly or indirectly should have either an importer or an authorised representative located in the EU acting as an ‘economic...

Data Privacy - Live Facial Recognition Technology Compliance

Julia Seary
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In an effort to address public concern about the potential for live facial recognition ( LFR ) technology to be used contrary to data privacy laws, the ICO have provided guidance on the use of LFR in public places by private companies and public...

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Cristina Parla
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The one place you expect to feel safe is home so when you engage a specialist to undertake any big projects or home renovations, you rightly expect to receive the highest level of service.  However, this does not always happen, and substandard and...

No Fault Divorce delayed until 2022

John Boon
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The fight against section 57 - fundamental dishonesty

Cristina Parla
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I recently acted for a client in connection with his personal injury claim which arose as a result of a slipping accident on private property. The facts of the case are relatively straightforward, but the approach adopted by the defendant caused...

Implications for carers and Deputies - Access to sex workers

Elizabeth Young
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A decision in the case of ‘C’ has been handed down, judging him to have the capacity to engage in sexual relations and to potentially engage a sex worker and identifying issues for those who may be asked to help make such arrangements for others ...

How has Covid-19 affected the enforcement of Judgments?

Martin Spencer
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It is all very well obtaining judgment against your debtor, but that does not necessarily mean that you can turn that judgment into cash. This can often prove the most challenging part of debt recovery and has especially been the case throughout the...

Dog bite compensation claims

Amy Forman
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During “lockdown”, owning a dog has become a popular choice for many people particularly those living alone and facing months in isolation or those looking for a reason to enjoy the great outdoors.  However, many are coming to realise that...

Proposed changes to the transport regulations for poultry and livestock

Rebecca Ironmonger
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A consultation by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (“DEFRA”) into proposed changes to the Regulations governing animal welfare in transport closed in February 2021 and has provoked much debate within industry. Rebecca...

The updated Trust Registration Service

Tamsyn Lees
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The Trust Registration Service (“TRS”) was originally set up in 2017 and only required trustees of express trusts with a relevant tax liability to register. The relevant taxes are: Income tax Capital Gains Tax Inheritance tax Stamp Duty...

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Catherine Rickett
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As of 4th May 2021, there will be a new scheme, which will allow struggling debtors time to ‘breathe’ and time to sort out their financial struggles.  This new scheme is called The Debt Respite Scheme (Breathing Space) Guidance and comes...

Stamp Duty Holiday Extended to 30 June

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The Stamp Duty holiday in England and Northern Ireland has been extended to 30 June 2021, after it was initially scheduled to be finishing at the end of March. Following a difficult period for the housing market, Chancellor Rishi Sunak confirmed that Stamp...

No Covid vaccination, no job...?

Desley Sherwin
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About a year ago, the hot topic in employment law was the new Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme that we all got to know and love as the furlough scheme.  The hot topic currently is the debate about mandatory vaccination . At the time of writing,...

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Ben Taylor
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Catherine Rickett
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Businesses are finding it increasingly difficult to stay afloat as the Covid-19 pandemic continues to ravage the UK. Despite several recent vaccine approvals and the government introducing a range of financial support schemes – including the Furlough...

A cautious Budget?

Ben Taylor
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In the lead up to the budget a number of economic commentators urged caution in respect of an increase in tax, so as not to stifle the economic recovery of the UK. That being said, with UK national debt the highest since 1963, it was still expected that...

GDPR and Data Transfers Post-Brexit

Julia Seary
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The legal position on GDPR and personal data transfer between the UK and the EEA has changed post-Brexit as follows: EU GDPR Regulation As an EU Regulation, EU GDPR no longer applies to the UK.  However, if you operate inside the UK, you will...

Residential Property Refresher - Section 47 & Section 48 Landlord and Tenant Act 1987

Bukola Obadun-Craigs
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Landlords still make this mistake and tenants often do not know any different so the problem isn’t trained away and continues to reoccur.  So what is the problem? Failing to comply with s.47 and s.48 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987 The...

Are People Becoming More Reliant on Their Inheritance?

Tim Russ
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Will and inheritance claims have been significantly increasing for many years now. According to the Ministry of Justice reporting in the Times last year, in 2016, the number of individuals seeking to claim a share or a larger proportion of a deceased...

What you need to know about the Brexit food and drink labelling changes

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The way food and drink producers, manufacturers, retailers and suppliers label food is changing as of January 1 2021, and you need to be ready. When the UK exited the European Union on 31 January 2020, the transition period was set in motion which ends on...

EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement - Short term work in the UK

Desley Sherwin
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With the Brexit/Withdrawal Agreement coming into effect, freedom of movement between the EU and UK has ended. EU, EEA and Swiss citizens entering the UK for work purposes may need to apply for a visa through the UK’s points-based immigration system....

Brexit and Seasonal Agricultural Workers Q&A

Desley Sherwin
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This article aims to answer some questions about UK farm employers’ access to seasonal workers under the Government’s extended Seasonal Workers Pilot. The end of the Brexit transition period on 31 December 2020 marks the end of freedom of...

What's on the horizon in leasehold reform?

Bukola Obadun-Craigs
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The Government has confirmed that legislation will be bought forward allowing leaseholders to extend their leases by a maximum of 990 years at zero ground rent, turning away from the 50-year lease extension with ground for leasehold houses and a 90-year...

The Impact of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement for UK Businesses and Trade

Julia Seary
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Following ten rounds of intense negotiations in the run up to Christmas, the EU-UK Trade and Co-operation Agreement (the TCA ) came into provisional effect at 11pm on 31 December 2020 when the European (Future Relationship) Act 2020 (the 2020 Act ) came...

EU-UK TCA - what does it mean for Nitrate Vulnerable Zones?

Julie Robinson
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This brief article considers environmental regulations and, taking Nitrate Vulnerable Zones (NVZs) as an example, whether UK authorities are likely to deregulate and relax requirements following the end of the transition period and the provisional coming...

Brexit and cross-compliance

Julie Robinson
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EU-UK TCA - what does it mean for the EU's Precautionary Principle?

Julie Robinson
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The precautionary principle generally puts a check on decision-making when scientific evidence about an environmental hazard is uncertain and the risks are potentially high, while critics would argue that it can hold back innovation and progress. It is a...

EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement - Trade in agricultural products Q&A

Julie Robinson
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This article aims to answer some questions following the Trade and Cooperation Agreement concluded between the UK and the EU and provisionally in force from 1 January 2021. Why can’t my seed potatoes be sold into the EU from 1 January 2021? This...

EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement - Organics Q&A

Julie Robinson
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This brief article aims to answer some questions about the certification, labelling and trading of organic food products following the provisional coming into force of the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) on 1 January 2021. Can organic products...

EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement - Protected Geographical Indications

Julie Robinson
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This brief article aims to answer some questions about the use of Protected Geographical Indications following the provisional coming into force of the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) on 1 January 2021. From 1 January 2021 the names of UK...

EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement and The Groceries Code

Julie Robinson
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Will the remit of the Groceries Code Adjudicator change as a result of the EU/UK trade deal? Nothing in the Trade and Cooperation Agreement impacts directly on the Groceries Supply Code of Practice or the remit of the Groceries Code Adjudicator. The...

A New Tax on Wealth

Ben Taylor
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A new tax on wealth is being considered and a report by The Wealth Tax Commission has been released this month making recommendations to the Government.  To find out how such changes could affect you as a taxpayer and whether you should review your...