Latest Legal News

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Construction works on neighbouring properties can make your life a misery but, with the right legal advice, you may be able to do something about them. In a case on point, the High Court came to the aid of a woman whose rental property was deprived of light...
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When an estate is to be administered, an application for probate must first be made if the deceased left a will. Once probate is granted, the process can begin. However, the mere granting of probate does not mean that all is said and done on the matter, as a...
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In a unanimous judgment, the Supreme Court has ruled that a bakery in Northern Ireland's refusal to make a cake bearing a slogan in support of same-sex marriage was not discriminatory. The legal battle began four years ago after Ashers bakery, a family-run...
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If you are approaching pension age, unless you are one of the increasingly few with a salary-related pension scheme, you would be wise to take professional advice before you take any irrevocable action. The decisions taken at certain points in managing your...
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One of the dilemmas the courts face from time to time is how to achieve the right balance between individual privacy and the public's right to know about things. In a recent case , a patient who had made a complaint against a GP sought publication of the...
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Japanese knotweed is a very considerable pest – 'indisputably the UK's most aggressive, destructive and invasive plant', according to the Environment Agency –as it can cause damage to buildings, spreads easily and is difficult to eradicate. As...
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One of the requirements for a will to be accepted as valid is that the person who makes it must have 'knowledge and approval' of its contents...in other words, they must understand what the will says and what it means in practice. It might seem, therefore,...
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Despite strong representations from the professional community, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) have decided that they will stick with a 30-day initial payment requirement for Capital Gains Tax (CGT) on residential property gains for disposals after April...
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Almost everyone who has flown much has a story (or more than one) about lost or damaged luggage, and holiday insurance claims regarding these are commonplace. A Finnish man who took a holiday to Malaga found that some items went missing from his luggage on...
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If you are faced with an unwelcome proposal for development nearby, a recent case shows how tenaciousness and a knowledge of past planning history can help to prevent it. Consistency of decision making is a fundamental principle of planning law and local...
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If you accept appointment under a power of attorney, it is essential to understand the responsibilities this entails. A recent case shows what can happen if a less than thorough approach is taken. It dealt with arrangements made by a 95-year-old widower...
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It is a stressful and unhappy enough time when a loved one dies, but the anguish of those mourning the loss can be compounded when there are complications over payments to care homes which seem excessive. Recently, the Competition and Markets Authority...
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On our densely populated island, there is a pressing need for available land to be put to sensible use and, where restrictive covenants lurking in title deeds prevent that happening, they can be modified. In a case on point, a man's desire to provide a...
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If landowners allow vegetation to grow so that it affects visibility on adjacent highways, should they be held liable if accidents occur? In a decision that broke new legal ground, the Court of Appeal has answered that question with a resounding 'no' . The...
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Farming families appear regularly in the courts these days, as more and more cases arise that feature undocumented promises that have been made (or are alleged to have been made) by parents but not kept. The law will only enforce such informal arrangements...
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Following the Grenfell disaster in 2017, cladding has come under close scrutiny with surveys being carried out as a priority in buildings across the UK. The failure to comply with Building Regulations (Part L1A 2010), which provides a framework for ensuring...
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Taxpayers are personally responsible for filing their tax returns on time, and failing to do so can lead to stiff financial penalties. However, in one case, the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) ruled that a self-employed website developer whose accountants lost all...
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Money in a bank account represents the debt due from the bank to the account holder and is not 'property' in the eyes of the law. The Court of Appeal made that point in quashing the convictions of a woman who was accused of abusing her position as a senior...
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When a will is made late in life which materially changes how an estate is to be distributed (especially when the new will favours one of a number of children), a dispute following the death is almost inevitable. So it was when an 85-year-old woman made a...
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It is a common term in a lease for the tenants to have to seek permission from the landlord if they want to do something new to or with the premises they let. Typically, such clauses specify that permission will not be 'unreasonably withheld'. However, what...
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There are special rules for people working in the UK on short-term secondment from employers based abroad. Many do not become taxpayers under the UK tax system. When one such person contacted HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) to clarify his position, he was...
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With the holiday season upon us, a recent case shows that there are limits to the liability of tour operators when accidents occur, especially when they are the result of rash behaviour. The case involved a man who fell from the balcony of his hotel in...
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A divorced man who remarried in his late 50s made a new will in 1998, one year after the marriage, which left his entire estate to his new wife. After he died, a home-made will was discovered, made shortly before his death. This left virtually his entire...
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When valuing a property for Inheritance Tax (IHT) purposes, is it legitimate to take into account its potential for enlargement or improvement – so-called 'hope value'? In a guideline ruling, the Upper Tribunal (UT) has answered that question in the...
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If family members or friends are facing bankruptcy, it may be tempting to assist them in keeping their assets away from the clutches of creditors. The folly of such conduct was, however, strikingly revealed by a Court of Appeal case concerning a family...