December 2014 Archive

Manufacturing a good result

When you think of construction contracts being “JCT” or “bricks and mortar”, think again. The Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 (“HGCRA”) applies very particular payment structures, notice requirements and dispute procedures where the contract creates “construction operations”. That is very widely defined and if you are in the manufacturing sector, note that it covers “industrial plant” and “installation in any building of fittings forming part of the land” (although note it does not cover work on power stations, waste treatment plants, pharmaceuticals or food production, or delivery-only non-installation contracts).

Nil Rate Band Legacies

The Court of Appeal has recently decided that the value of a Nil Rate Band legacy given by a Testatrix in her Will included the unused Nil Rate Band of the Deceased’s husband. This meant that the Nil Rate Band legacy given under the terms of the Deceased’s Will equated to a sum of £650,000.

Leaner Skeletons – The Order of the Day

When parties involved in litigation come to court they will often be ordered to file skeleton arguments (“skeletons”) shortly before the hearing starts. The object of these is to set out clearly the nature of a party’s case for the benefit of the Judge hearing it and his/her opponent.

Parkwell - no holds barred

In July 2014, the Finance Act 2014 received Royal Assent granting various new powers to HMRC. The two main powers that are causing concern throughout financial and business communities are Accelerated Payment Notices (“APN”) and Follower Notices.

HMRC's new powers - sit up and take notice

In July 2014, the Finance Act 2014 received Royal Assent granting HMRC the power to issue Accelerated Payment Notices and Follower Notices. Both of these notices, in certain circumstances, allow HMRC to enforce payment of disputed tax benefits before the claimed benefit has been fully investigated.

Trust management – The payment of trustees

Administering a trust can be a complex and time consuming process. This is particularly true for lay trustees who may not appreciate the extent of the responsibility which comes with the role. Consideration should be given (prior to accepting the position) as to whether the trustee will be entitled to remuneration for their services. In this respect the approach taken towards professional trustees differs from that taken to a lay trustee.

Is a claim on a Directors and Officers policy made as a consumer or in business?

The Financial Ombudsmen Service (“FOS”) resolves disputes between consumers and businesses. So if you want to complain about a Directors & Officers policy, clearly a ‘business’ policy, even if you are claiming in what appears to be a personal capacity, does that fall within the jurisdiction? FOS thought yes, but the broker against whom the director complained in this case asked the Court to review FOS’s jurisdiction.
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