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Back to school, but who’s paying the bill?

10 Sep 2018

Following the breakdown of a relationship, arguments about who is footing the bill for your child’s private education can add further stress to an already emotionally and financially challenging time. Below, we aim to ease this stress by taking a look into the key issues and options for separated parents. Your concerns When your relationship […]

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Cryptocurrency: the unpaid tax bill HMRC is waiting to cash in

01 Sep 2018

As Bitcoin nears its 10th anniversary, billions will have been made and lost by speculators and investors. However, many who have invested will have failed to declare any profits made to HMRC. Here, Paul Bricknell, tax partner for Manchester commercial law firm Kuits, warns that companies and individuals need to seriously consider registering to disclose their […]

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Landlords, take note: new licensing regime for houses in multiple occupation (HMOs)

19 Jul 2018

Mandatory licensing for houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) is due to come into effect from 1st October 2018. This will replace the current regime, which currently affects houses occupied by more than five people, living in two or more separate households over three storeys. A common example is student housing. The new regime will apply […]

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The sleep-in crisis: the Court of Appeal overturns judgment for £400 million back pay

19 Jul 2018

In February we reported on the high-profile employment tribunal decision that determined that care workers must receive the national minimum wage, as opposed to a flat-rate fee, for ‘sleep-in shifts’ (overnight shifts during which they are permitted to sleep). This sent shockwaves across the care industry and threatened to bankrupt many smaller businesses who faced […]

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What the Mills v Mills case tells us about spousal maintenance: The importance of a financial order

18 Jul 2018

The Supreme Court has confirmed that the Court of Appeal was wrong to take into account a former wife’s housing costs when increasing her spousal maintenance award on an appeal brought in 2014, despite provision having been made specifically for her housing costs as part of a capital award agreed in 2002. The Court of […]

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What now for Civil Partnerships?

29 Jun 2018

Following the recent Supreme Court ruling, a heterosexual couple should now be allowed to enter into a civil partnership, which the Civil Partnership Act 2004 (CPA) in its current form restricts to same sex couples. The CPA introduced civil partnerships to overcome the inequality that same sex couples could not marry.  It provided a way […]

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D-Day Looms for Defaulting Taxpayers

18 Jun 2018

Over the past two years HMRC has been receiving information from over 100 countries about the affairs of UK taxpayers. The majority of those taxpayers will have their tax affairs in order and therefore this will not be a concern. However, there are still a significant number of taxpayers who have not fully disclosed their […]

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What Owens v Owens tells us about the need for divorce law reform

17 May 2018

The Supreme Court is currently hearing the final arguments of Tini Owens and Hugh Owens, who have been engaged in a long fight over whether Tini is entitled to a divorce. In anticipation of the result, we reflect on the current law and how it has led to a married couple arguing in the Supreme […]

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Staff uniforms: National Minimum Wage could be infringed

16 May 2018

In 2015, the clothes retailer Monsoon was ordered to pay more than £100,000 to its employees as a result of underpayment of the National Minimum Wage (NMW). The underpayment resulted from its practice of requiring staff to wear Monsoon clothes at work, and deducting the discounted cost of such clothes from their wages. This resulted […]

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Countdown to the GDPR: the five things you need to do before 25th May

26 Apr 2018

In one month, on 25th May, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will take effect. If you have not yet taken steps to make your business GDPR-compliant, now is the time to take action. While the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has indicated that it is not intending to issue large fines immediately from 25 May, […]

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HMLR to introduce “extra checks” on forms DS1: applications to discharge may take longer

11 Apr 2018

As part of HMLR’s improvement to their counter-fraud processes and systems, they have implemented new checks on applications to remove mortgages from title registers. The additional checks are to help identify and prevent fraudulent applications. There are three application routes to remove a mortgage from a title register: 1. Form DS1, which is sent by […]

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International Protection of Designs – UK ratifies the Hague Agreement

06 Apr 2018

On 13 March 2018, the UK completed its final step in joining the Hague Agreement for the protection of industrial designs. As a result, the Hague Agreement will enter into force in the UK on 13 June 2018. The Hague system allows applicants, by way of a single application and fee (filed at the World […]

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The Cambridge Analytica Facebook affair may embolden the authorities to aggressively enforce the GDPR as the public wakes up to the importance of data privacy.

22 Mar 2018

The recent Cambridge Analytica scandal has hit news headlines worldwide and placed both Cambridge Analytica and Facebook in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons. The story has brought privacy and data protection to the attention of millions and will, no doubt, have increased awareness of how their data is used by businesses. Under the […]

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Crocs decision: the importance of being ‘snappy’ about protecting your designs

22 Mar 2018

A recent decision from the EU General Court has once again highlighted the serious consequences of disclosing designs before you apply for a Registered Community Design.        Last week, the well-known Crocs shoe design (you either love them or hate them!) was found to be invalid by the General Court. The Court agreed with the […]

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Recording Assignments and Licences – Worth the Trouble?

12 Mar 2018

It is established public policy that transactions such assignments of and licences under patents and registered trade marks should be recorded on the public register.  The Patents and Trade Marks Acts both reflect this policy with provisions (s25(4) in the Trade Marks Act and s68 of the Patents Act) restricting a Claimant’s entitlement to recover […]

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Mum’s the Word

08 Mar 2018

What do McDonald’s, Coca Cola and KFC all have in common?  They all use trade secrets or confidential terms to protect the assets of most value to them: their secret recipes. All this appeared to resurface again in the past few weeks as people attempted to recreate the Colonel’s secret recipe when there were distribution […]

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How do I get divorced?

28 Feb 2018

Getting divorced can be an intimidating prospect. As well as dealing with any emotional distress, many people will not understand the process or what they need to do at each stage. A good family lawyer will be able to make things easier for you, once the decision to separate has been made, by setting out […]

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How is money distributed on divorce?

28 Feb 2018

If you are considering divorce and there are significant assets to be taken into account, such as property, a business, a pension, an expected inheritance, a large salary or simply money in the bank, you should speak to a family lawyer who specialises in matrimonial finances immediately. Many people do not realise going into a […]

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Do you own ‘your’ IP? Six simple questions to ask yourself

21 Feb 2018

Protecting intellectual property is crucial to the success of your business. But do you actually own it? One of the questions that often arises in intellectual property matters is who actually owns the IP rights? Your business will not necessarily own the IP that has been developed just because it has paid for it, or […]

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What hospitality businesses need to know about tips and tax evasion

21 Feb 2018

Tax evasion is a hot topic, with barely a week going by without another headline highlighting the methods that many corporates and individuals have used to minimise their tax bills. We are now living in a climate of tax shaming, and there is increasing pressure on the government to bring tax evaders to account and […]

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KFC chicken shortage: advice for franchise owners

20 Feb 2018

KFC has closed more than 600 of its 900 UK outlets after delivery problems meant they have ran out of chicken. This is as result of KFC switching its delivery contract to DHL, which blamed “operational issues” for disruption to the supply of chicken. Understandably, a lot has been said about the workers at the […]

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The sleep-in crisis: Care home providers face difficult decision

12 Feb 2018

Following months of suspension, in November the government resumed the enforcement of the national minimum wage (NMW) on healthcare providers with immediate effect. They simultaneously launched the Social Care Compliance Scheme (SCCS) in the hope of alleviating the short-term impact of its decision. Organisations already under investigation for breaching NMW legislation are now receiving letters […]

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GDPR for the leisure and hospitality sector: five things bar and restaurant operators need to know

09 Feb 2018

On 25th May 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will take effect. The GDPR will have a wide-ranging impact on almost every business operating in the UK and beyond and will raise particular issues for those businesses operating in the bar and restaurant sector. The headline grabbing fines (being up to the higher of […]

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Registrable trade marks: does it smell right to you?

09 Feb 2018

The requirement for a registrable trade mark to be capable of being represented graphically has, hitherto, posed an impediment to registration of smell marks. The seven criteria for representing any mark – requirements of precision, self-containment, easy accessibility, intelligibility, durability and objectivity (known as the Sieckmann criteria) underlined the difficulty. However, it now seems that […]

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Calculating the length of a marriage: the most complicated equation of all?

12 Jan 2018

Family law calls for quite a lot of mathematics. From calculating how matrimonial finances should be divided upon divorce, to considering the tax implications of the same, a lot of number crunching goes on. Here, Kuits family team, who specialises in complex matrimonial finances, explain how a good divorce lawyer needs to be well-versed in […]

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