July 2012 Archive

Could a claim be brought against a solicitor who fails to bring a claim in time?

An issue which often catches out businesses who are seeking to bring a claim is limitation. Limitation is the legal term for when a claim is out of time. If the applicable time period has elapsed, then a claimant will no longer be entitled to bring a claim, no matter how strong their case or how valuable the claim is. However, if solicitors have been instructed and have failed to bring the claim in time, then a professional negligence claim to recover the losses suffered will usually have strong prospects of success.

Robinson v PE Jones Contractors Limited [2001] EWHC 102 TCC

Three issues arising from The Court of Appeal’s judgment in Robinson -v- P E Jones Contractors Limited are considered in this article: the roles and responsibilities of the professional designer and the designer builder; the significance and practicability of the complex structure theory and whether it still survives; and tortious liability as a creature of judicial or social policy.

Don't lose your tax planning morals

A division between what people consider to be morally acceptable and what the law states is legally correct when it comes to tax planning and the lengths some individuals, not just those in the public eye, will go to in order to pay less tax.

When customers ask for detailed information, can unreasonable requests be resisted?

Under the Data Protection Act 1998, customers are entitled to make subject access requests to seek personal data (data from which the individual can be identified) from organisations, such as banks, which hold data about them. Banks are required to comply with such requests or they could face complaints to the Information Commissioner or indeed legal claims against them. Lloyds was recently on the wrong end of such an application and it was costly in legal expenses alone.

Breach of fiduciary duty does not have to be deliberate - Mortgage Express v Abensons

If you need to make a claim for breach of fiduciary duty, do not assume that a longer limitation period will apply, such as applies when there has been deliberate concealment of a claim. In a recent case where breach of fiduciary duty was added to an existing claim for negligence, but after expiry of normal limitation, the additional claim may be too late. This is a difficult situation, since often sufficiently strong evidence in relation to the fiduciary duty claim may only develop later – and perhaps too late.
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