Commercial Client News

Workplace Data Leaks - Motor Insurer Wins Six-Figure Compensation

February 18, 2020

Miscreant employees often form the first link in a chain which feeds the black market in personal data. However, as a ground-breaking High Court ...

Scaffolding Triggers Commercial Tenant's 'Peaceful Enjoyment' Complaint

February 10, 2020

Included in almost every commercial lease is a covenant which confers on the tenant a right to peacefully enjoy the premises. One such provision came ...

Mental Health Problems Can Be Just as Disabling as Physical Incapacity

February 6, 2020

The word 'disabled' may bring to mind a person who is physically incapacitated, but the definition of the word in employment law terms is far broader ...

Finance Company Behind Direct Marketing Email Campaign Fined £60,000

February 4, 2020

Unsolicited direct marketing emails, sent without informed consent, are viewed as a modern scourge by millions and those who engage in such campaigns ...

High Court Orders Restaurant Chain to Complete Commercial Lease

January 28, 2020

Does an agreement to enter into a commercial lease come to an end if the identity of the prospective landlord changes? The High Court tackled that ...

Disciplinary Investigations - Any Lack of Fairness Will Cost You!

January 22, 2020

Workplace disciplinary investigations require careful handling and employers who fail to act fairly are likely to be hit hard in the pocket. That was ...

Facing a Business Crisis? Don't Forget Your Employees' Rights!

January 7, 2020

It is only too easy for businesses dealing with office politics, poor trading or cashflow difficulties to take their eye off the ball when it comes ...

Neighbourhood Plans - Court Postpones Local Referendum in Legal First

December 23, 2019

Neighbourhood plans are an increasingly common means by which local people are given the chance to express their views on the future character and ...

Underpaid Live-in Porter Wins Over £100,000 in Guideline Case

December 18, 2019

The National Minimum Wage (NMW) on the face of it imposes a straightforward duty to pay a minimum sum for every hour worked. However, as an important ...

Twelve Month Reprieve on Construction Industry VAT Changes

December 10, 2019

The introduction of the new VAT domestic reverse charge for construction services, originally due this October, has been postponed until October ...

High Court Umpires Fierce Row Over Pharmaceuticals Company's Future

November 29, 2019

Shareholder disagreements as to the direction a company should take are generally fought out behind closed doors. However, as a High Court case ...

Upper Tribunal Paves Way for Former Corporate HQ's Conversion Into 114 Flats

November 21, 2019

Record employment levels mean strong demand for office space, but the need for more new homes is perhaps even more pressing. A case concerning ...

Vegetarianism is Not a Protected Characteristic, ET Rules

November 18, 2019

People have all sorts of reasons for choosing not to eat meat, and that prompted an Employment Tribunal (ET) to rule that vegetarianism is a ...

Can Wild Animals Ever Be Owned By Anyone? Novel High Court Ruling

November 13, 2019

It may seem obvious that no one can own a wild animal. However, in a novel case of interest to property professionals – and anglers – the ...

Legal Landscape is Complex When Tenants Seek to Buy Freehold of Flats

November 8, 2019

Flat tenants in certain circumstances have the right to band together and acquire the freehold of the blocks in which they live. However, as a High ...

Employers Cannot Be Forced to Re-Engage Unfairly Dismissed Workers

October 31, 2019

Can Employment Tribunals (ETs) or the courts force employers to re-engage employees who have been unfairly dismissed? In a ground-breaking decision, ...

A Contract Is What it Says

October 28, 2019

When you enter into a contract, you are agreeing to be bound by what it says, not by what you think it means. Only rarely, such as when the meaning ...

High Court Overturns Planning Decision for Bungalows Development

October 24, 2019

It may come as a surprise to many that local authorities are under no statutory obligation to give reasons for their planning decisions. However, as ...

Copycat Design Proves Expensive for Retailer

October 22, 2019

There is almost nothing more frustrating for businesses than to see their successful products imitated by rivals. However, as a High Court case ...

Agricultural Tenancies Are Complex - Always Seek Professional Advice

October 9, 2019

When a farmer dies, close relatives are in certain circumstances entitled to succeed to any agricultural tenancies he or she held. However, strict ...

Hospital Whistleblower Compensated for Detrimental Treatment

October 3, 2019

Workplace whistleblowers who act in the public interest by exposing wrongdoing are protected by the full force of the law. In a case on point, a ...

Reached an Important Agreement? Get a Lawyer to Record It in Writing

September 30, 2019

Agreements are frequently reached behind closed boardroom doors, but a failure to engage a professional to record them, contemporaneously and in ...

Refused Planning Permission? You Are Entitled to Know the Reason Why

September 24, 2019

A fundamental principle of good government is that anyone on the receiving end of an adverse decision is entitled to know why it was made. In a case ...

Construction Industry VAT Changes Ahead

September 1, 2019

Businesses in the construction industry are reminded that on 1 October 2019 the new VAT domestic reverse charge will come into force. This is being ...

Similar Product Names Do Not Always Lead to a Likelihood of Confusion

August 18, 2019

Rival products sometimes bear similar names but, when considering whether or not that is likely to cause confusion, judges place themselves in the ...

Missed Deadlines Mean Missed Opportunities

July 8, 2019

Gerry Rafferty famously claimed that 'if you get it wrong, you'll get it right next time', but a recent construction dispute shows that this is often ...

Pension Trustees Owe No Duty of Care to Employer

July 2, 2019

Many directors of companies are also trustees of the company pension scheme. Sometimes, their duties as a director and as a scheme trustee can be ...

Possession Granted When Tenant Claims Argument is Over Same Facts

June 20, 2019

It is very common for tenants who run up rent arrears to effectively be given a second chance by the courts when facing an application by the ...

Gay Headteacher a Victim of Unconscious Discrimination, EAT Rules

June 17, 2019

Whether discrimination is subliminal or deliberate often makes little difference to the pain and distress it causes. The point was strikingly made by ...

Sale of Insolvent Company to Creditor Not Improper

June 12, 2019

Insolvencies are seldom happy periods for any of those involved and great care must be taken by those who deal with the insolvency proceedings to ...

Three Quarters of Firms Not Aware of Anti-Tax Evasion Law

June 11, 2019

A recent survey by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) shows that only one in four UK businesses are aware of the penalties they could face under the ...

What Exactly Is the 'Curtilage' of a Building?

June 9, 2019

Whether land is or is not within the curtilage of a building can be a decisive factor in many planning cases. The High Court considered the meaning ...

Accountant Who Worked Exclusively for One Client Became an Employee

May 20, 2019

The distinction between employment and self-employment is a continuing source of controversy and a ruling by the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) ...

Adjudication Payments Must Be Made First

May 6, 2019

Payments under building contracts can be a touchy issue and have led to numerous disputes. Adjudication proceedings are intended to make the process ...

Discrimination and the Burden of Proof - Court of Appeal Gives Guidance

May 1, 2019

Once an employee succeeds in establishing facts that arguably support a finding of discrimination, the burden of proving that there was no such ...

Exchanging Secret Information? Always Get a Non-Disclosure Agreement!

April 28, 2019

Businesses that deal or hope to deal with one another often have to put security concerns to one side and share their confidential information. As a ...

Court Ruling Boosts HMRC's Cross-Border Powers

April 24, 2019

National boundaries pose little or no obstacle to tax evasion. The Court of Appeal made that point in an important ruling which has greatly boosted ...

Air Quality Targets and the Planning Regime - Court of Appeal Test Case

April 22, 2019

The Government is duty-bound by European law to ensure that specified air quality standards are met as quickly as possible. However, the Court of ...

Equal Pay Comparability - Supermarket Workers Win Important Victory

April 14, 2019

In Asda Stores Limited v Brierley, the question before the Court of Appeal was whether or not thousands of women who worked at Asda's retail stores ...

Balancing Noise Nuisance Against the Needs of Industry - High Court Ruling

April 9, 2019

Industrial processes can be noisy and those responsible for them frequently worry that complaints from neighbouring residents will affect their ...

Even Highly Offensive Workplace Banter May Not Amount to Harassment

April 7, 2019

Irreverent and foul-mouthed banter is commonplace in some working environments and does not necessarily amount to harassment or victimisation. An ...

Online Selling - What About the VAT?

April 4, 2019

It is often optimistically considered that trading on eBay and similar online sales platforms is effectively outside the tax system. That, of course, ...

Doing an Important Business Deal? Make Sure You Get it in Writing!

April 1, 2019

The existence of oral agreements is easily asserted but very hard to prove, and that is one good reason why important deals should be in writing and ...

Look Before You Leap With Trade Names

March 27, 2019

The first Intellectual Property Enterprise Court case heard outside London took place recently, when the court sat in Birmingham at the request of ...

Trading in the Winter Period - A Cautionary Note for Landlords

March 21, 2019

Weak economic growth and increasing competition is still wreaking havoc in the High Street and the quarter that starts in January is often make or ...

Licence Revocation Threat Averted by Prompt Action

March 15, 2019

Government regulatory decisions can have an instant and catastrophic impact on businesses, but prompt legal action can ensure that such damage is not ...

Just Because a Debt is Small...

February 26, 2019

Many people think that the costs and difficulty of litigation mean that it is not worth pursuing relatively small debts. However, a High Court case ...

Court of Appeal Guidance on Use of Pay Less Notices

February 18, 2019

When a construction dispute arises and a pay less notice is issued, the Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 requires that the ...

Trade Marks and the Territorial Limits on the High Court's Jurisdiction

February 15, 2019

UK and EU trade marks are a highly effective means of protecting your brand – but they are subject to territorial limits. The High Court made ...

Gold Visas Scheme Relaunch With Vetting Proposed

February 12, 2019

The Government has taken steps to halt the 'Tier 1 Investor' visa scheme after it became clear that it was being used to launder the proceeds of ...

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