Does a lender have a legal right to possession?

Does a lender have a legal right to possession?

In the recent case of Thakker and another v Northern Rock plc [2014] the High Court considered an argument by a borrower that a lender did not have a legal right to possession unless and until it had complied with the Mortgage: Conduct of Business Rules (MCOB) as provided for by the FCA.

MCOB came into force on 31 October 2004 and sets out a number of principles by which residential mortgage providers should conduct their business. It also sets out certain rules for dealing with borrowers who are in arrears with their mortgage repayments.

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Employee Handbooks

Employee Handbooks

I’m often asked about the importance of Employee Handbooks and what should be included so I thought it would be useful to share my advice in this blog, providing a list of recommended policies and procedures to include.

Employee Handbooks are not a one size fits all. Policies should be tailored to the businesses individual needs and be there to provide clear and helpful guidance to employees but also to rely upon if disciplinary action is necessary or an issue turns contentious and you need to evidence and justify the businesses actions.

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Holiday Pay Overtime

Holiday Pay Overtime

Bear Scotland Ltd v Fulton & anor

Earlier this year we reported on the ongoing saga that is holiday pay and whether bonuses, commission payments and overtime should be included when calculating such payments. To re-read our Articles please click on the following links:

Well today is the day Employment Lawyers have been waiting for with the ruling handed down on Bear Scotland Ltd v Fulton & anor.

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Unison highlights widespread failure to pay travel time in the care sector

Unison highlights widespread failure to pay travel time in the care sector

Unison has found from a Freedom of Information request they submitted that only 7% of councils in England have contracts in place with their care providers that require them to pay travel time to homecare providers. In Wales no councils have such contractual terms. This may mean that the care workers are effectively being paid less than the National Minimum Wage even if their hourly rate is higher than the statutory minimum. This could lead to fines and penalties from HMRC who confirmed in June that A social care provider found to have not paid its staff for travelling time and other hours worked was told to repay over £600,000 in arrears of wages to almost 3,000 workers.

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Time off Employee Rights: When, how, why and where can you take it?

Time off Employee Rights: When, how, why and where can you take it?

Holiday-                     

5.6 weeks paid annual leave (pro rata for part-time workers)

Rest Breaks

Adult Workers:

Working Day Rest-      A rest break of 20 minutes if the working day is more than six hours.

Daily Rest-                   11 hours' uninterrupted rest per day.

Weekly Rest-               24 hours' uninterrupted rest per week (or 48 hours uninterrupted rest per                                      fortnight).

Night Workers-          Maximum of 8 hours work in any 24 hours (on average). Remember they                                       also have the right to a free health assessment.

Young workers (who are under 18 but over compulsory school age) have greater entitlements:

Working Day Rest-      A rest break of 30 minutes if the working day is more than four and a half hours

Daily Rest-                   12 hours' uninterrupted daily rest.

Weekly Rest-               48 hours' weekly rest.

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The changing face of personal injury claims

The changing face of personal injury claims

On the 30th April 2010 the way in which law firms handled personal injury claims resulting from low value road traffic accidents (those estimated to be worth less than £10,000) was radically overhauled. 

The traditional “letter of claim” sent by post to the person or company allegedly at fault was replaced with an online portal system overseen by the Ministry of Justice. Under the relevant Pre Action Protocol standardised forms for use with this system were created and defined stages in the claim process were set; stage 1 (issue of claim), stage 2 (medical evidence) and stage 3 (court proceedings). The system was designed to speed up the process for settling simple and low value claims for the injured party and setting a rigid framework for costs to keep them proportionate to the value of such claims.

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The Condensation Conundrum

The Condensation Conundrum

Condensation is an issue that will affect many landlords and tenants as the cold weather arrives and it can be a difficult issue to deal with as the lead article written by Tom Entwistle for @landlordZONE October pages shows – 

It will also have even more serious consequences for landlords if the proposed changes to the s21 process outlined in Sarah Teather’s Private Members’ Bill, which receives its second reading in November, becomes law.

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New Proposals for Debt Recovery

New Proposals for Debt Recovery

There are many areas of law within Civil Litigation where Claimants must follow a Pre-Action Protocol (PAP) before commencing any Court proceedings.

There is a general PAP for areas of law where a specific PAP does not apply. This PAP focuses on disclosing all relevant information prior to issuing proceedings and attempting alternative dispute resolution (ADR).

The aim of a PAP is for the parties to settle matters prior to issuing proceedings by laying all cards on the table early and assisting the Court with efficient management for those cases where Court cannot be avoided.

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New Child Maintenance Service

New Child Maintenance Service

From 11th August 2014 the new Child Maintenance Service began charging an application fee of £20 in order to submit a claim for child maintenance.  The fee does carry some exemptions, if you are a victim of Domestic Violence, under 19 years old or live in Northern Ireland then the application fee does not apply.

The most recent figures suggest that this step has had a huge impact on the number of parents seeking the help of the Child Maintenance Service.  The Government intended for the measure to encourage more co-operation and private arrangements, but charities involved with parents have serious doubts about the change.

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Recovery of Debts of £10,000.00 or less: The Small Claims Track - how it works.

If you are a small business or individual and are owed monies you can issue a county court claim against the debtor (once you have given sufficient notice of your intention to do so).  If a claim is issued and not defended you may apply for a Judgment against the debtor and thereafter enforce that Judgment by a method that is most appropriate.

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Driving and dementia - that very difficult discussion.

Driving and dementia - that very difficult discussion.

Like many of his generation, my father-in-law was a very proud man; a gentleman of a chivalrous age. He enjoyed the freedom that his car provided and heaven forbid the thought of being driven anywhere other than by taxi and, deary me, what an extravagance that would be!

Following his diagnosis with Alzheimer’s disease he had trouble understanding (or perhaps accepting?) the impact that the illness naturally had on his day-to-day life – and, in particular, upon his ability to drive.

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Advocates to have specialist training for sex cases.

Advocates to have specialist training for sex cases.

Ministry of Justice secretary Chris Grayling announced that publicly funded advocates, will have to undergo specialist training before being allowed to take sexual assault and rape cases under government plans to make the court process less traumatic for victims of crime.

By March 2015, the Ministry of Justice said it will be a requirement that all publicly funded solicitor and barristers must undertake 'approved specialist training' on working with vulnerable victims and witnesses in serious sexual cases.

It gave no further details. 

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Power of Attorney - all you need to know

Power of Attorney - all you need to know

Have you ever thought about what would happen if you had an accident, a stroke or developed dementia? We all hope to remain healthy as long as possible, however, there may come a time where we need help managing our affairs. A Lasting Power of Attorney gives chosen individuals legal authority to manage your affairs should there come a time that you not able to yourself.

What is a Lasting Power of Attorney?

A Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a legal document which allows you to appoint nominated decision makers (attorneys) to make certain decisions on your behalf if you are no longer able to make them for yourself.

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Bid to ban rip-off deals on pensions

Bid to ban rip-off deals on pensions

PENSION firms are to be banned from giving retirement advice in a bid to prevent the unscrupulous from ripping off savers.

Millions of workers are now set to get a better pension deal after Chancellor George Osborne yesterday announced the separation of sales from advice.

People will get free independent information about retirement options under a guidance guarantee which starts next April.

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"What's on the horizon"

"What's on the horizon"

What to expect……

30th/31st July – Holiday Pay

We've recently reported on the ongoing saga that is holiday pay, see articles here and here dealing with who is entitled to what and when. The cases of interest to all Employment Law Practitioners and Employers at the moment are Neal v Freightliner Ltd and Fulton and another v Bear Scotland Ltd which are due to be heard at the Employment Appeals Tribunal on 30 and 31 July 2014. 

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