When an occupier’s waste becomes a landowner’s problem
A landowner has been convicted and fined after his tenants illegally stockpiled waste wood on his land.
Drug and alcohol policies
This final month, in our Breaking Down the Handbook series, we look at drug and alcohol policies and why they are important for employers to have when dealing with employees with drug and alcohol misuse problems.
Expert witnesses - impartiality and balance
In two recent but very different cases, there have been unusually strong criticisms of expert witnesses. They highlight the need for any expert witness to be seen to be independent and impartial and for their evidence to be balanced and not one-sided.
Headline legal changes - what to expect in 2019
A summary of some of the headline legal changes relevant to commercial organisations anticipated in 2019:
The money stays where it is
Adjudication decisions – avoiding enforcement where the money may disappear
Five key employment cases of 2018
As we enter the festive period and the start of a new year, we take a look back on some of the most notable cases of 2018.
Fraudsters are entitled to make use of the law of adverse possession
The Court of Appeal has held that the law of adverse possession can be used to obtain ownership of a property even if the possession came about due to previous fraudulent activity.
Can commonhold be reinvigorated?
The Law Commission has issued a substantial consultation seeking to improve the manner in which the commonhold system operates and to persuade existing leaseholders to move to a commonhold structure.
Develop and be damned is not a good strategy
The Court of Appeal has held that public policy interests do not justify the release of restrictive covenants where a developer deliberately builds houses on land in breach of those covenants.
Supreme Court finds for tenant in Cavendish Hotel dispute
A landlord can defeat a lease renewal on development grounds only where it intends to carry out the works regardless of whether or not the tenant vacates voluntarily.
Christmas parties in the #MeToo era: how to minimise risk
A year has passed since the birth of the #MeToo movement shone the spotlight on accounts of sexual harassment across the globe.
A right to play
The Supreme Court has held that rights to use sporting and leisure facilities can be easements, even where some of the facilities were constructed after the date when the easement was granted.
Ready to complete or not ready to complete?
A recent case has held that a seller was ready, willing and able to complete despite not being able to provide immediate vacant possession and itself being in repudiatory breach.
Failure to follow procurement rules rendered development agreement ineffective
The Court of Appeal has given its long awaited judgment in the case of Faraday Development Ltd v West Berkshire Council
Supreme Court rules on Barnardo’s v Buckinghamshire pensions case
It has certainly been a busy few weeks for pensions in the law courts. Hot on the heels of the High Court decision on GMP equalisation, the Supreme Court last week handed down judgment in Barnardo’s v Buckinghamshire and others, the latest in a line of cases dealing with the appropriate index to use in increasing pensions in payment.
#metoo – despite the headlines the vast majority of workplaces are unaffected
Those who attended our national seminars may well remember that we carried out a survey as to the effect of #metoo in workplaces. Of the 201 people who answered the survey, 17% said they had been impacted by the effects of #metoo, with 83% saying they hadn’t noticed any increase in sexual harassment claims.
Business energy efficiency reporting – goodbye CRC, hello SECR
After abolishing the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme, the government has made regulations requiring additional reporting by quoted companies, large unquoted companies and large LLPs on greenhouse gas emissions, energy consumption and energy efficiency action
Gender Recognition Certificates: a simplified process?
The Equality and Human Rights Commission (the Commission) has published a response to the government’s consultation on the potential reform of the process to obtain a Gender Recognition Certificate (GRC).
Change announced to how MEES affects residential landlords
Residential landlords will be required to spend up to £3,500 of their own money improving the energy efficiency of their properties.
Ensuring your workplace is equipped to deal with sexual harassment allegations?
Although harassment is firmly front and centre in the media it would appear in a large number of workplaces there has been little practical impact.
Quarterly Case law update from the Shoosmiths Employment Team
In this article, we take a look back through some key cases from the last three months and the lessons which we can learn from them.
Supreme Court rules on Trust Deed appeal
On 31 October 2018 the Supreme Court issued its Judgment in the appeal of Dooneen Ltd (t/a McGinness Associates) and another (Respondents) v Mond (Appellant) (Scotland)  UKSC 54.
Equalisation and Guaranteed Minimum Pensions
The High Court has handed down its judgement in a case concerning regarding equalisation of Guaranteed Minimum Pensions (“GMPs”).
The new Infrastructure Conditions of Contract (ICC) Target Cost Version
In terms of risk, target cost contracts lie between lump sum contracts where the contractor takes most of the risk, and cost-reimbursable contracts, where the contractor is paid its costs plus a fee.
Breaking down the handbook: Time off work policies
In the latest instalment of the Breaking Down the Handbook series, we discuss time off work policies, looking at how to manage difficult circumstances and make expectations clear to your employees.
Telecoms Code: Operators’ entitlement to survey new sites confirmed
An important decision on the new Electronic Communications Code answers the hotly-contested issue of whether landowners can avoid the imposition of telecoms apparatus by preventing operators from undertaking initial suitability surveys.
When is a corporate guarantee a distribution?
In 2017 the ICAEW and ICAS suggested that an upstream or cross-stream guarantee might amount to a distribution of profits unless a fee was payable in return for the granting of the guarantee.
Exercise of CRAR waived the right to forfeit
The High Court has held that a landlord waived the right to forfeit a lease for rent arrears when it attempted to use Commercial Rent Arrears Recovery (CRAR).
GDPR five months on: ICO guidance update
It's been five months since GDPR became enforceable. The 25 May deadline has come and gone, but organisations must continue to focus on their data protection obligations - the Information Commissioner has referred to this as an ongoing compliance journey.
Are you being served?
A new professional statement on service charges in commercial property has been published by the RICS.
Unopposed lease renewal: it's good to talk
A recent case has decided that a section 25 notice served on the wrong person was valid and made an order for terms on an unopposed lease renewal.
The government pushes forward with residential leasehold reforms
The government is consulting on its plans to outlaw new leasehold houses and to ban ground rents. The consultation period lasts just six weeks.
Occupying empty property: business rates
In a decision that will be welcomed by property owners, a recent case has considered the meaning of ‘occupation’ in the context of business rates and has decided that the motivation for occupation is not relevant.
Thinking about overage
Overage provisions are a common feature of the development landscape, helping to ensure that a landowner receives a “fair” price for its land.
Another week, more breach related fines - and check if you need to register!
The ICO continues to undertake enforcement action under the previous Data Protection Act 1998. It applies where the breach was before 25 May 2018, when the GDPR and Data Protection Act 2018 came into force.
GDPR... What next...?
The 25 May 2018, when GDPR, and the associated UK Data Protection Act 2018, came into force was a landmark date for data privacy, but fast forward nearly six months, what should you be doing now?
Law Commission supports view that electronic signatures are valid
The Law Commission has published its provisional findings on the validity of electronic signatures and has outlined potential options for reform.
CMA to investigate loyalty penalty super-complaint
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has 90 days to respond to a super-compliant lodged by the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) over its concerns that customers are suffering across a variety of sectors as a result of loyalty penalties.
Using customer payments to ease cashflow just got easier
Why? Because new legislation prevents the prohibition of assignment of receivables under certain contracts.
Pre-commencement Condition Reforms 2018
Planning conditions play an important role in addressing or mitigating the impacts of development and well worded conditions which satisfy the necessary statutory tests can assist with the timely delivery of development schemes.
Enfranchisement in the spotlight
The Law Commission has published its expected consultation on reforming leasehold enfranchisement - the area of law that enables tenants of residential houses and flats to buy the freehold of their properties or to extend their leases.
Third party redevelopment meant lease renewal could be opposed
A recent case has confirmed that a landlord was entitled to oppose its tenant's lease renewal under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 where redevelopment of the site was to be undertaken by a third party.
Three eras - the sunset of £500K, the dawn of GDPR enforcement and the horizon of Brexit
In just a short space of time, the ever-evolving world of data protection and cyber has seen yet more change:
Franchise resales - should franchisors be involved?
In the first of our series of articles looking at the franchise industry, we are taking a look at the key principles of ethical franchising and how franchisees should be able to realise the value of their business on a transfer.
UK Government publishes plans for the competition law regime if there's no Brexit deal
On 13 September 2018, the UK government published guidance on the application of competition law and merger control if there is no Brexit deal.
Scots commercial leases: time for reform?
The Scottish Law Commission has issued a discussion paper inviting views on the reform of six aspects of the law relating to leases of commercial property in Scotland. Responses have to be submitted by 14 September 2018.
Admiralty Court hands down judgement on ship mortgage claim
Today, the Admiralty Court handed down judgment in in a claim under a marine mortgage over an offshore support vessel. The bank was represented by Elliot Bishop of Shoosmiths and James Watthey, Barrister at 4 Pump Court chambers
Perpetually renewable lease granted by mistake
The Upper Tribunal has agreed to correct a lease where one party had taken advantage of the other's mistake to create a perpetually renewable lease.
Focus on flexible working policies
In readiness for National Work Life Week from 1 - 5 October, now is the time to consider whether your flexible working policies are fit for purpose. In this article in our Breaking Down the Handbook series we highlight what such policies should cover.
Action stations everyone! The LGBT Action Plan is here - or is it?
While there have been many positive responses given by Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) people in relation to experiences at work, a recent survey confirms there is more still to be done.
Government consults on effectiveness of EPCs
The government has issued a call for evidence to learn how energy performance certificates (EPCs) are performing and whether they can be made more effective.
Registering a MEES exemption
A guide to registering exemptions under the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES) was published recently.
The continued spotlight on flexible working
According to a survey, only 6% of employees are working the traditional 9-to-5, and only a small percentage of those entering new employment would opt for those working hours.
Relocation amounted to derogation
The High Court has held that a parking agreement permitting a landowner to relocate parking spaces did not allow him to allocate different spaces hundreds of metres away. To do so was in derogation from the grant, it said.
Publication of draft bill regulating overseas entities owning land in the UK
The government is asking for comments on a draft bill that will require overseas entities owning land in the UK, or intending to own land in the UK, to disclose details of their beneficial owners on a public register.
Capability procedures explained
This month, in our Breaking Down the Handbook series, we look at capability policies and why they are a useful tool for employers to have when it comes to dealing with poor performance.
Consultation document from the DWP on protecting defined benefits schemes invites comments
Following on from the government's recent White Paper in connection with defined benefit pension schemes, the Department for Work and Pensions has issued a consultation document.
Sponsorship Management System: top tips for sponsor licence holders - part two
In this second of two articles I'm going to share with you, as employers of sponsored migrant workers, five more pearls of wisdom that may have passed you by or that may just serve as a useful reminder to you.
Does Akhter v Khan mean that English Law now recognises Shariah Marriages?
At first glance, it might appear from the reported case of Akhter v Khan that we have now finally arrived at the stage where English civil law has recognised an Islamic marriage (Nikah) which has been performed in England and Wales.
Court refuses to confirm lease repair obligations by declaration
The Technology and Construction Court has declined to grant declarations confirming the extent of a tenant's lease repairing covenant.
First High Court ruling on town and village greens trigger event
The case of Cooper Estates Strategic Land Limited v Wiltshire Council  EWHC 1704 (Admin) has seen the High Court considering what constitutes a trigger event for the purposes of Section 15C and Schedule 1A of the Commons Act 2006.
Sentences for manslaughter offences set to increase
The Sentencing Council has released a definitive sentencing guideline for manslaughter offences which will come into force on 1 November 2018.
Right to light claim not defeated by summary judgment
In a recent case, a property owner was unsuccessful in its attempt to end a claim for infringement of a right to light by summary judgment.
Sports clubs: playing fair with national minimum wage
Every few months, the government releases a list of employers who have failed to pay their employees the national minimum wage (NMW).
Collective redundancy consultation: How it should be done?
Following on from our previous article covering the process employers should follow in an individual redundancy consultation, we now focus on the practical steps an employer should go through to ensure compliance with the collective consultation process.
Shhhh! Is your conversation more than you expected?
In a recent chat with a client, a typical scenario was mentioned: a phone conversation between lender and borrower about the current state of the loan facility.
Court of Appeal's strict interpretation of overage agreement
The Court of Appeal has upheld an obligation to pay overage where a proposed conversion project received planning consent but would breach building regulations if carried out.
NPPF - Climate Change
NPPF 2 has landed and with it are changes to the government's stance on climate change. What remains to be seen is how these changes will tie in with the government's 25 Year Plan for the Environment, especially in relation to environmental net gains.
Isn't Kit-Kat everyone's favourite four-finger chocolate bar?
Apparently not, according to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) today which made an important ruling with regards to Kit Kat's famous shape.
Freedom of expression: On a Cliff edge?
As has been much reported in the media, Sir Cliff Richard has recently won a landmark case with significant implications for individuals' rights to privacy on the one hand, and the right to freedom of expression on the other.
NPPF - Heritage Assets
Provisions in NPPF 2 published on the 24 July 2018, in relation to the conservation and enhancement of the historic environment are not a significant departure from the original NPPF issued in 2012.
NPPF - The Agent of Change Principle
This briefing note considers the inclusion, in the revised NPPF, of a specific reference to the agent of change principle, the principle by which a person or business introducing a new land use is responsible for managing the impact of that change.
NPPF - Green Belt
In a change from the wording set out in the draft version of the document, local authorities should alter green belt boundaries only where exceptional circumstances are 'fully evidenced and justified', the new NPPF says.
When things go bad: managing the serial complainer
In this article we share some top tips for effective performance management of the employee who challenges at each step, making that process as difficult as possible.
Proposals to simplify tenants' enfranchisement of leasehold houses
As the first step in a project to reform the law of leasehold enfranchisement, the Law Commission has published a summary of proposed solutions for leaseholders of houses.
NPPF - Joint Working and Statements of Common Ground
This briefing note considers the introduction into the NPPF of a requirement for local planning authorities to prepare a statement of common ground in order to meet three primary objectives.
NPPF - Starter Homes
On 24 July 2018, the Government published long awaited revised National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).
NPPF - Viability
The revised NPPF includes new rules governing viability testing in both plan making and decision taking. Revisions to the online National Planning Practice Guidance concerning viability testing were also published.
Law Commission's proposals for updating the land registration system in England and Wales
Following a consultation exercise two years ago, the Law Commission has published a massive 600 page report that recommends changes to the land registration system in England and Wales and incorporates a draft Bill to achieve its proposals.
A knotty problem strikes again
The Court of Appeal has recently clarified the basis on which landowners with Japanese knotweed on their land may be liable to adjoining land owners for causing a legal nuisance.
NPPF2: Revised National Planning Policy Guidance Released
The long anticipated revised NPPF proposals were published on 24 July 2018.
Breaking Down the Handbook: Dignity at work policy
In this instalment of our Breaking Down the Handbook series we look at dignity at work policies, in particular why employers should have them, what they should contain, and how they should be applied in the workplace.
Sponsorship Management System: top tips for sponsor licence holders - part one
In this first of two articles I'd like to share with you, as employers of sponsored migrant workers, five pearls of wisdom that may have passed you by, or that may just serve as a useful reminder to you.
Notification: Facebook - you have a £500,000 fine from the Information Commissioner's Office
Facebook is set to be fined £500,000, the maximum amount possible, for two breaches of the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA 1998).
Adoption of unregistered land as highway
Unregistered land in unknown ownership can cause a headache on development and the extent of the issue will often depend upon what the land is needed for.
Telecoms Code: lift and shift it
A recent case has decided that contractual 'lift and shift' provisions overrode statutory provisions contained in the former Telecommunications Code.
A notable event
A recent case involving the conversion of a hotel into flats has demonstrated the importance of protecting a contract at the Land Registry - but it does not guarantee 100% protection.
Proposals for a minimum term for residential tenancies
The government is seeking views on a proposal that new tenancies in the private residential sector should be for a minimum of three years.
Individual redundancy consultation: How it should be done?
With Rolls Royce's announcement of potential job cuts adding to the list of high profile employers placing employees at risk of redundancy, we look at the practical steps an employer should take to ensure a fair redundancy consultation process.
Fathers and the workplace: The difficulties continue...
The statistics show that very low numbers of eligible fathers take up the right to shared parental leave, or other statutory and flexible working rights, to enable care for their children.
PS love your trademark
A recent claim filed before the High Court emphasises why it is important to make use of a trade mark following registration.
A comeback for option agreements?
Planning promotion agreements (also known as land promotion agreements) have become increasingly popular among landowners and developers in recent years. Could options now be making a comeback?
Occupational Pension Schemes: amendments and overpayments
The High Court has recently ruled that there is no statutory limitation period in which to recover pension overpayment so long as recovery is by adjusting future overpayments.
EU workers: 'simple' process to stay in UK post-Brexit
With 3.8 million EU citizens in the UK, according to ONS figures, employers have rightly been concerned about maintaining a stable workforce in the lead up to and post-Brexit. Good news is however afoot.
Pimlico Plumbers: the self-employed v brand debate
The widely reported decision in Pimlico Plumbers emphasises the risks of retaining control over staff. However, such control can be key to protecting an organisations' brand and reputation in the market place. Where does this leave us?
What do employers need to know about whistleblowing policies?
In this instalment of our 'Breaking Down the Handbook' series, we look at whistleblowing policies, why they are needed, what they should contain and what traps employers need to avoid.
An easement or a lease - the court decides
The High Court has decided that a document purporting to grant a lease of a right of way in fact created an easement.
Use of injunction in modern trespass cases
In two recent cases of trespass, injunctions have been the preferred remedy rather than possession.
How the courts are interpreting long-term maintenance contracts
The Private Finance Initiative (PFI) may be past its peak, but various cases have come to court in the past few years involving long-term maintenance contracts, including PFIs.
Louboutin sees red, in a good way!
Yesterday the European Court of Justice (ECJ) gave its judgment on the question of whether the Louboutin trade mark for its red sole could be invalidated because it consisted exclusively of the shape of the sole and was not a colour mark.
Supreme Court upholds no oral modification clause
The Supreme Court has upheld the effectiveness of a
CMA steps closer to regional businesses with planned Manchester office
Andrea Coscelli, CEO of the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has indicated that the UK competition law regulator may step closer to regional businesses with plans to open an office in Manchester.
From footfall to clicks - the experts talk retail risk
Over the last few years, news that some of the nation's most iconic retail stores have closed has become more frequent.
Excluding Liability for Loss of Profits
In Motortrak v. FCA Australia Pty Ltd  EWHC 990 (Comm), the High Court found an exclusion clause for loss of profits valid even though this left the non-defaulting party with no substantive remedy in the wake of the other party's repudiatory breach.
CMA launches competition review of the funerals sector
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has launched a market study into funeral services.
Say what you mean - lease or licence?
The High Court has held that an agreement for occupation, despite being called a licence, actually created a tenancy and so the occupier had acquired rights under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954.
Breaking down the Handbook: Email, Internet and Social Media Policies
This instalment of Breaking Down the Handbook series looks at email, internet and social media policies, in particular considering why employers should have them, what they should contain and what the pitfalls are in drafting and applying such policies.
Landmark disability discrimination decision
The dismissal of an English teacher for showing 18-rated film Halloween to a class of 15 and 16-year-olds was fair, however it did amount to discrimination arising from his disability under section 15 of the Equality Act 2010 (the EqA).
Tenant not obliged to reinstate as condition of break
A court has construed a break option in favour of the tenant holding that it was not a condition of the exercise of the break option that the tenant should reinstate the premises to their original layout.
Landowners' liability for occupiers' abandoned waste
An unsuccessful appeal by a landowner against a conviction for knowingly permitting an unauthorised waste operation on its land has highlighted the risks to landowners of incurring criminal liability if former occupiers abandon waste on their land.
When is it reasonable for a lender to withhold consent?
Secured lenders often restrict a borrower's ability to dispose of a property by requiring their prior consent, which is often qualified by
A lucky escape
Thanks to a lucky escape on a legal technicality, a landowner now owns his property free from a right of way created by former owners
Well this is the start of the regulated journey to compliance. Much has been achieved in the just over two years since the GDPR was published in the Official Journal of the European Union, but the data protection landscape is an evolving one.
Does an employer have to enhance shared parental pay?
The recent decision by the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) in Capita Customer Management Limited v Ali provided welcome clarity on shared parental leave pay (
Letting standards slip - hotel owners cannot enforce brand standards
An appeal judge refused to grant a hotel owner an order for specific performance requiring the tenant to maintain active trade and keep and run premises in accordance with brand standards.
Refusal of consent was unreasonable
The Court of Appeal has decided that a landlord's refusal of consent to an application for planning permission was unreasonable, because the landlord was seeking to achieve a collateral purpose.
Insurance trap for tenants
A recent case highlights a trap for unwary tenants where a lease contains an inadequate landlord's reinstatement clause.
Should Inheritance Tax be abolished?
Independent British think tank the Resolution Foundation, has started a nationwide discussion after proposing that inheritance tax be scrapped and replaced with a lifetime receipts tax.
Assumptions for base land values
A recent high court decision concerning the assumptions for base land value in viability assessments has caught a lot of attention.
AirBnB is a breach of residential use in a lease
On 1 May 2018, an appeal judge continued an injunction restraining a leaseholder from letting his flat as AirBnB accommodation, and approved the lower court's finding that it was a breach of his lease.
A lesson in leasing
A recent case decides that an 'entire agreement' clause in the lease of a café did not prevent the implication of a missing term.
Conditions on underletting: cumulative or alternative?
The Court of Appeal has applied a literal approach to the interpretation of underletting conditions. This overturns an earlier decision that applied commercial common sense to reach a tenant-friendly outcome.
Landlord wins as CVA term not a penalty
Following the liquidation of BHS Ltd, the High Court was asked to consider whether a landlord could claim full rent as an administration expense following termination of the CVA.
Pensions Legal Update - New Regulations which came into force on 6 April 2018
A number of regulatory changes relating to pension schemes came into force on 6 April 2018.
A register of overseas companies owning UK properties
The government has issued a response to its consultation on proposals to introduce a register of beneficial owners of overseas companies that own UK property or that participate in public procurement.
CMA secures real estate agent director disqualifications
On Tuesday 10 April, the UK competition regulator, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced that it secured the disqualification of two directors of the Abbott and Frost Estate Agents Ltd in Burnham-on-Sea for breaching competition law.
Litigants in person must follow the rules
The Supreme Court confirms no leniency for a litigant in person who failed to follow the rules on service of a claim form.
Consent: Double-edged sword and the progression towards other legal bases for processing
The GDPR sets out six lawful 'bases' for processing, consent being one of them. However, consent has historically been the favoured basis as genuine consent puts individuals in control, building customer trust as well as enhancing your reputation.
Collective consultation - when is the duty triggered?
The case of Keeping Kids Company v Smith & others recently confirmed when the duty to collectively consult is triggered. Moving forwards this will be an important judgment for employers to remember when proposing to make redundancies.
Gender Pay gap - so you missed the deadline what now?
The deadline for reporting gender pay gap figures was midnight 4 April. What will happen if you missed it?
UK Industrial Strategy - Creative Industries Sector Deal
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) has published the Creative Industries Sector Deal aimed at making the UK the best place in the world for businesses in the creative industries.
No break for unregistered assignee
The assignee of a lease was not entitled to serve a valid break notice before it became the registered proprietor.
Breaking Down The Handbook: Absence Management Policies
Our third instalment in the 'Breaking Down the Handbook' series looks at absence management policies, in particular considering why employers should have them, what they should contain and whether they should have contractual status.
MEES - 1 April 2018 is just the start?
MEES comes into force on 1 April 2018. The current minimum energy rating is E, but landlords must be prepared for this standard to be tightened sooner rather than later.
What next for wills?
A recent public consultation by the Law Commission on reforms to will making considered testamentary capacity, whether wills could be made electronically and powers for a court to recognise informal documents, perhaps even a text message, as a valid will.
LIBOR, no more?
The expected phase out of LIBOR is creating uncertainty in the markets and in this article we examine what might replace it and the impact on current documentation.
When is a protected conversation not protected?
Protected conversations are intended to remain confidential and away from scrutiny of the tribunals but when considering the case of Basra v BJSS Ltd, the Employment Appeal Tribunal determined that in certain circumstances, the exclusion will not apply.
Iceland stays cool after ratings win
The Supreme Court has ruled that plant and machinery used to assist cooling should not be valued for ratings purposes.
Early service of gas safety certificates essential for new tenants
Private landlords have many legally imposed and unavoidable responsibilities towards tenants. However, recent court cases highlight the importance of serving certain prescribed information at the start of a tenancy - including gas safety certificates.
Imminent changes to waste rules - it's not all rubbish
Waste crime has been identified by the government as one of the most critical problems in the environmental sector.
Refusal of consent was not unreasonable
The Court of Appeal has held that refusal of consent for both good and bad reasons will not automatically render that refusal unreasonable.
LBTT - Happy Third Anniversary?
Land and Buildings Transaction Tax was introduced in 2015 to replace Stamp Duty Land Tax in Scotland.
Lease extension - calculating the premium
The Court of Appeal has held that when calculating the premium to be paid for an extended lease regard can be given to real world transactions to determine value.
Working Time Regulations and rest breaks
The Employment Appeals Tribunal (EAT) has considered whether compensatory rest has to be taken in one uninterrupted period, or whether a series of short breaks can be accumulated to amount to the mandatory time.
Directors to get better protection from fraud
The UK government has announced changes to legislation to reduce the risk of fraud, violence or intimidation faced by company directors as a result of having their residential addresses on the public record.
A developer has been required to pay substantial damages where it did not use 'reasonable endeavours' to fulfil conditions that would have triggered an obligation to pay overage.
Transfers of Money Purchase Pension Rights: Regulatory Amendments
Regulations amending the Occupational Pension Schemes (Preservation of Benefit) Regulations 1991 have recently been introduced. The regulations will come into force on April 6 2018.
Dyson court 'clean up' - secret injunction as Tesla learns electric car plans
In a curious turn of events, a Court of Appeal court judgment (Dyson Technology Ltd v Pellerey  EWCA Civ 87 (12 February 2016)) was released which reveals Dyson secured an injunction to stop an employee from joining rival Tesla back in 2015.
Estate agents under CMA scrutiny for collusion
The UK competition regulator, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has opened a new investigation into the residential estate agents' market. It has not yet named the companies involved.
The prevention principle and time at large
Contractors often argue that, because of an employer's interference or act of prevention, the position under a contract is that time has become at large.
NPPF 2018 - Housing summary
The NPPF has been with us, without amendment for around 6 years which for national planning policy is close to a record. We have had Written Ministerial Statement and the NPPG to supplement it but the document itself has not changed during that period.
NPPF 2018 - 'Agent of Change'
Having first announced proposed changes to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) in December 2015, the government's long awaited draft revisions to the NPPF emerged yesterday.
NPPF 2018 - Common Ground
Having first announced proposed changes to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) in December 2015, the government's long awaited draft revisions to the NPPF emerged yesterday.
NPPF 2018 - Introduction
The long anticipated draft revised National Planning Policy Framework , NPPF, proposals were published on 5 March 2018.
NPPF 2018 - Starter homes
On 5 March 2018, the Government began a consultation on the highly anticipated revisions to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).
NPPF 2018 - Upwards extensions
The proposed amendments to the NPPF provide backing for upward extensions.
NPPF 2018 - High Level
For housing the changes are generally as expected with the new Housing Delivery Test strengthening the need to show not only sufficient deliverable sites to meet identified housing need but also demonstrate that those homes are actually being delivered.
NPPF 2018 - housing delivery tests
On 5 March 2018, the Government began a consultation on the highly anticipated revisions to the National Planning Policy Framework.
Data retention - what impact does the GDPR have for employers?
The GDPR will undoubtedly involve a shake-up of the way businesses approach and, crucially, evidence their data protection compliance, not least in terms of how they retain personal data. We consider the implications of GDPR on data retention below.
Help for residential tenants is on the way
The pace of change for residential landlords and tenants shows no sign of abating. Several recent press announcements herald new changes to the law in England, which will benefit tenants.
Security for costs: A claimant's weapon
The Commercial Court has recently confirmed that a claimant can, in the right circumstances, be granted security for costs against a defendant - even where the defendant is not bringing a counter-claim.
(Nearly) the end of smash and grab adjudications
Where an employer has failed to serve a payment or pay less notice, it is still entitled to have an interim payment valued subsequently, in adjudication.
Disciplinary and grievance procedures
Our second article in the 'Breaking Down the Handbook' series looks at disciplinary and grievance procedures, in particular considering why these are necessary, what they should contain and whether they should have contractual status.
Covert CCTV at work. Is this ever possible?
The European Court of Human Rights recently held that covert CCTV infringed a worker's right to a private life. A previous decision of the same court permitted use of covert CCTV. So where do employers stand?
ICO publishes draft data protection fees guidance
A new registration scheme for data controllers will come in from 25 May 2018, the same day the GDPR is introduced across the EU, the ICO has announced.
Asbestos risks in commercial property
It has been illegal to use asbestos in the construction or refurbishment of buildings since 1999 but historically it was widely used in building materials due to its heat, fire and sound protection qualities.
PPF contingent assets - Changed requirements
The Pension Protection Fund (PPF) published new forms of contingent asset agreements in January along with new contingent asset guidance. It follows its publication of a final determination and levy policy statement in December for the levy year 2018/19.
GDPR - 100 days and counting: Are you ready?
With just 100 days to go until the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into force, many employers are still grappling with the requirements of the new regime. What steps should employers be taking to ensure they are ready for 25 May 2018?
Making sure your handbook is fit for purpose
Following on from our series last year looking at key employment contract terms, we are now turning our attention to employee handbooks and the dos and don'ts employers need to consider when putting together policies and procedures within those handbooks.
LGBT History Month: Lest we forget
February marks LGBT History Month in the United Kingdom. Let's not forget, then, that it was only in the early 2000s that employment laws regarding sexual orientation and gender identity began to evolve to where they are today.
Refund scheme launched for fees paid to the Office of the Public Guardian
The Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) has launched a refund scheme for fees paid to it to register lasting powers of attorney and enduring powers of attorney between 1 April 2013 and 31 March 2017.
Does a pay rise increase the rate of maternity pay?
In 2005, the European Court of Justice issued a landmark decision in the case of Alabaster which changed the way in which employers are required to calculate maternity pay. Over time though it seems that these rules may have been forgotten.
Change proposed to how MEES will apply to residential property
The government is proposing that residential landlords should contribute towards the cost of improving the energy efficiency of their properties.
Overseas companies owning UK property will have to provide details of their owners
The government has announced that overseas companies that own or buy property in the UK will be required to provide details of their ultimate owners on a public register.
Dismissing employees due to right to work issues
In the final article of the series, we consider the options available to employers when they are unable to satisfy themselves that an employee retains the right to work in the UK and how to effect a fair dismissal in these circumstances.
Disability discrimination - be aware of the hidden disability
With the press reporting incidents of passengers being refused assistance for
Kason Kek-Gardner - Court of Appeal delivers guidance on interpretation of related contracts
In the case of Kason Kek-Gardner Ltd v PCL  EWCA Civ 2132, the Court of Appeal has highlighted the importance of interpreting a contract based on the language of the agreement, and not clouding its meaning with background knowledge of the parties.
Periodic tenancy: one tenancy or many?
A periodic tenancy is a single tenancy and not a series of tenancies.
New Electronic Communications Code - Scotland
With the new Electronic Communications Code coming into effect across the UK on 28 December 2017, we highlight a few points worthy of mention in respect of its operation in Scotland.
The Planning (Scotland) Bill Update
The Planning (Scotland) Bill (the 'Bill'), published at the end of 2017, outlined a number of changes to the current legislation in Scotland.
A green future?
The government has launched its long-awaited 25 Year Environment Plan - 'A Green Future: Our 25 Year Plan to Improve the Environment' (Plan). Angus Evers, Shoosmiths environmental and planning partner, gives his verdict on the comprehensive report.
Mid-market corporate finance - a look ahead at 2018
2017 has been a year dominated by geopolitical uncertainty: lengthy and inconclusive coalition talks in Germany; Catalan secession; and in the UK, the trigger of Article 50 and a hung parliament in June.
New Year's resolutions for litigators: will the new Disclosure Pilot succeed in reducing legal costs in 2018?
The Disclosure Working Group has announced a new pilot proposal for disclosure in civil proceedings in England and Wales which is open for consultation until February 2018.
A ban on unfair lettings fees: draft Tenant Fees Bill 2017
The government has introduced a draft Tenant Fees Bill, with the aim of making residential letting more fair and affordable for tenants by reducing costs at the outset of a tenancy.