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Employer Not Liable for Worker's Offensive Facebook Post

Under Section 109(1) of the Equality Act 2010 , anything done by a person in the course of their employment must be treated as also done by the employer. That is to say employers generally bear legal liability for misdeeds committed by their employees in...

Company Pays Crushing Price for Failing to File its Accounts On Time

The consequences of a company being struck off the Companies House register – even temporarily for nothing more than an administrative failure – can be catastrophic. In a case on point, a company that suffered that fate sacrificed the profits it...

Agricultural Tenancies Are Complex - Always Seek Professional Advice

When a farmer dies, close relatives are in certain circumstances entitled to succeed to any agricultural tenancies he or she held. However, strict time limits and other procedural rules apply to the exercise of that right, which is why bereavement should not...

Ripped Off By a Crooked Employee? You May Be Entitled to Tax Relief

Losing money at the hands of a crooked employee is a sadly familiar experience for many businesses, but what are the tax consequences of such deceit? The First-tier Tribunal (FTT) tackled that issue in the case of a catering supplies company whose manager...

Hospital Whistleblower Compensated for Detrimental Treatment

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 hospital worker who endured detrimental treatment after making protected disclosures was awarded substantial...

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

Agreements are frequently reached behind closed boardroom doors, but a failure to engage a professional to record them, contemporaneously and in writing, can cause serious problems down the line. That was certainly so in one case concerning the tax...

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

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 on point, the High Court came to the aid of a housing developer who could only speculate as to the reason...

Constructive Knowledge - Employer Defeats Claim Thanks to Reasonableness Test

Under Section 15 of the Equality Act 2010 , an employer's duty to make reasonable adjustments for an employee who is disabled is only triggered if the employer has actual knowledge or could reasonably be expected to know (has 'constructive knowledge') of...

Motor Industry Worker Who Profited From Theft of Data Ordered to Pay £25,500

In November 2018, a motor industry worker, Mustafa Kasim, was given a six-month prison sentence for accessing motorists' personal data on his employer's computer system without authorisation and selling it to rogue telemarketers. The case was brought by the...

Hotel Under Duty to Protect Guests Against Third-Party Criminal Acts

Can businesses owe a duty to protect customers on their premises from the criminal acts of others? In a test case concerning a horrific attack on three hotel guests , the High Court has ruled that, in certain circumstances, the answer to that question is...

Reasonable Endeavours Clauses Can Have Teeth

Unreasonable delay in fulfilling the terms of a contract is an unwise policy, as a recent dispute that ended up in the Court of Appeal shows. When a developer wished to build an ice-skating rink, its first priority was to secure a clear title to the...

Trust in an Employee Misplaced? The Law Will Help You Pick Up the Pieces

In spite of the obvious risks involved, a great many businesses have no choice but to entrust confidential information to their employees. A High Court case showed that, where such trust turns out to be misplaced, judges have a range of powers to deal...

Construction Industry VAT Changes Ahead

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 introduced as an anti-fraud measure and will see a major change in accounting for VAT on some construction...

Lack of Due Diligence Gives Company Buyer Four Days in Court

When the sale of a company is taking place, it is usual for warranties to be given regarding how the company being sold has conducted its affairs prior to the sale. Making sure these are accurate is essential. In a recent case, the purchaser of a company...

Contract Adjudications are an Alternative to Litigation, Not an Addition

Contract adjudications can provide a swift and cost-effective alternative to litigation. Adjudication decisions are not immune from error but, as a High Court case showed , they are meant to be final and those who challenge them face an uphill struggle. ...

Photographer Subjected to Racial Harassment Wins Substantial Damages

If you have been ill-treated at work, Employment Tribunals (ETs) have the power to award damages against your employer and to compensate you for the indignity or injury to feelings you have suffered. In one case, a hard-working photographer who was sacked...

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

Rival products sometimes bear similar names but, when considering whether or not that is likely to cause confusion, judges place themselves in the shoes of average consumers. The High Court did just that in resolving a trade mark dispute in the cosmetics...

HMRC Errors Lead to Loss of Tax

Although getting one's tax return right is to be recommended, there are many grey areas in tax and, when HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) make mistakes at their end, the effect can be to exonerate the taxpayer from liability for all or part of the tax, interest...

High Court Scotches Plans for £1.8 Million Holiday Park Expansion

Planning decisions would be unpredictable and merely arbitrary if they were not based on carefully considered policies that have been subjected to public scrutiny. The High Court made that point in scotching £1.8 million plans for the expansion of a...

What Counts as 'Time Work'?

A recent case illustrates that decisions as to whether time spent by a worker who is on call counts as 'time work' for the purposes of the National Minimum Wage (NMW) legislation are highly dependent on the individual facts ( Frudd and Another v The...

Owner of Fire-Damaged Factory Triumphs in High Court Insurance Dispute

Almost all businesses are insured against fire damage but, when the worst happens, insurers are understandably anxious to make sure they do not pay out any more than they have to. That situation provides fertile ground for dispute, which was certainly so...

Enabling Tax Non-Compliance

There are hundreds of thousands of companies in tax havens and the true commercial value added by them is probably trivial, whereas the tax avoided or evaded runs into billions, so it is no wonder that governments are mounting an ever-increasing effort to...

Are Others Benefiting From Your Goodwill?

Many successful businesses have experience of others seeking to ride on the coat-tails of their expensively established goodwill. However, as was shown by one High Court case , expert legal advice can help ensure that credit is only given where it is due. ...

No-Fault Eviction to End: Landlord and Tenant Law Revisions Likely

Talk to a tenant and the lack of security of tenure is often brought up as a significant issue. For landlords, the inability easily to obtain possession of a tenanted property can often cause angst. There is little dispute that a good-quality, settled...

Phase Two of the 'Good Work Plan' - Protecting Vulnerable Workers

In July 2017, Matthew Taylor published his independent review on modern working practices, entitled 'Good Work' . The Government published its response to the review in February 2018 and launched consultations on how best to implement many of the...