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Customs and excise quarterly update, February 2018

Published on 13 February 2018. By Adam Craggs, Partner

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Welcome to the February edition of our customs and excise quarterly update.

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Blog

Mr Justice Langstaff to chair contaminated blood inquiry

Published on 13 February 2018. By Emma Kislingbury, Associate

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Mr Justice Langstaff will lead the public inquiry into how contaminated blood transfusions infected thousands of people with HIV and hepatitis C in the 1970s and 80s

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Blog

Insuring Cryptocurrency risk, and why a duck might not actually be a duck

Published on 13 February 2018. By Max Rossiter, Trainee Solicitor

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Cryptocurrencies have dominated headlines with their soaring value and accelerating use. Their regulation has remained somewhat of an afterthought, however. This blog post looks at some of the pitfalls and the larger implications for financial professionals and the insurance industry that the risks of cryptocurrency present.

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Blog

Beware of the risks when notifying warranty claims

Published on 13 February 2018. By Geraldine Elliott, Partner and Eliot Henderson, Associate

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In Teoco UK Limited v Aircom Jersey 4 Limited, Aircom Global Operations Limited(1) the Court of Appeal upheld the High Court's decision to strike out certain breach of warranty claims on the basis that the buyer had given the seller inadequate notice of those claims. The buyer's attempt to keep its options open by drafting its notices widely proved fatal to its claims, as it failed to identify the specific warranties to which its claims related as required by the share purchase agreement.

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Blog

ICOs in Hong Kong

13 February 2018

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We have all seen the rise in the price of Bitcoin in the last year, and may also be aware (at the very least) of the existence of ICOs. But what are ICOs? And what legal framework do they operate in? ICOs in Hong Kong.

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Blog

Sabotage at sea - The LADY M

13 February 2018

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In The LADY M, the English Commercial Court held that shipowners could rely on the Hague-Visby Rules fire defence even when the fire was set by the crew (without owners’ knowledge). In so doing, the admiralty concept of barratry received rare consideration by the Courts.

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Blog

RICS Conflict Avoidance Pledge

12 February 2018

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It is a well-known fact that the costs of resolving disputes can quickly escalate, and that it is often not cost and time effective to pursue even mid-sized claims through arbitration or litigation. In an attempt to circumvent the need for this sort of dispute resolution, by avoiding disagreements developing into disputes, the Conflict Avoidance Coalition has formed and introduced a "Conflict Avoidance Pledge".

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Blog

Trainees Take on 2018: can we predict the unpredictable?

Published on 08 February 2018. By Daisy Fulton, Trainee Solicitor and Anna Greco, Associate and Leah Wood, Trainee Solicitor and Samantha Thompson, Associate and Matthew Plampton, Trainee Solicitor

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Despite the rollercoaster that was 2017, our trainees did fairly well in predicting its twists and turns, including that Trump would continue without restraint on Twitter. In an attempt to continue our success, the trainees have submitted their predictions for 2018. Disclaimer: we failed to foresee the rise in Bitcoin last year (and therefore must continue to work), so please do not rely on the below for your investment advice! Read on to see our bets on Brexit, US Politics, the World Cup and 'automated bundling'!

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Blog

Cannon: Tax barrister not careless in relying on advice received from his accountant

Published on 07 February 2018. By Constantine Christofi, Associate

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In Cannon v HMRC [2017] UKFTT 859 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal has held that a tax barrister was not careless in relying on tax advice received from an accountant retained to give professional advice on specified issues.

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Blog

Monkey See, Monkey Do

Published on 06 February 2018. By Genevieve Isherwood, Associate

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Implications for humans and animals of the recent successful cloning of monkeys by Chinese researchers

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Privilege: A welcome respite from ENRC?

Published on 05 February 2018. By Davina Given, Partner and Mafruhdha Miah, Trainee Solicitor

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Are interviews held with employees to prepare a report intended to deter a governmental authority from taking legal action privileged?

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Blog

English Holdings - UT allows set-off of corporation tax loss against general income

Published on 05 February 2018. By Michelle Sloane, Senior Associate

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In English Holdings Ltd v HMRC [2016] UKFTT 0346 (TC), the Upper Tribunal (UT) upheld a decision of the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) which allowed an appeal by a non-UK resident company against a decision of HMRC refusing its claim to offset losses arising in its UK permanent establishment (PE) against profits earned by its UK property rental business.

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Blog

CMA clamps down on unfair gambling promotions

Published on 01 February 2018. By Jeremy Drew, Partner and Stuart Harris, Associate

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The CMA has spoken: online gambling operators must act now to avoid falling foul of misleading terms and practices. See below for our list of dos and don’ts.

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Publication

Government announces new office for product safety and standards

01 February 2018

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On 21 January 2018, the Government announced the creation of the Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS), a new national oversight body tasked with “identifying consumer risks and managing responses to large-scale product recalls and repairs”.

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Publication

Tax update - February 2018

01 February 2018

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In this month’s update we report on HMRC’s recently published guidance relating to penalties for enablers of defeated abusive tax arrangements; the publication by the EU of a list of non-cooperative jurisdictions in tax matters; and the outcome of HMRC’s consultation on reporting obligations for offshore structures.

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Blog

Beneficial House – Tribunal orders HMRC to issue closure notices in tax avoidance case

Published on 31 January 2018. By Alexis Armitage, Associate

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Beneficial House; Stanley Dock; Chancery (UK) LLP, Valhalla Private Client Services LLP; Business Premises Renovation Allowance; BPRA; Disclosure of Tax Avoidance Scheme rules; DOTAS; Tax on restoration of hotel; HMRC closure notices; closure notices; Tribunal orders HMRC to issue closure notices; application for a closure notice; section 28 TMA..

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Blog

Duty calls: What information should be provided to patients following treatment?

Published on 31 January 2018. By Florence Page, Senior Associate

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Summary of the High Court's recent decision in a case concerning the duty to inform a patient of treatment outcomes and the requirement for follow-up, further treatment, or monitoring.

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Blog

Trainees took on 2017: were they right?

30 January 2018

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Following RPC trainees' 2017 "predictions", our editors take a look back at the key trends and events over the last 12 months to determine whether the trainees were right!

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Blog

Retrospective and prospective delay analyses – do they provide the same results?

26 January 2018

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The recent case of Fluor v Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industry Co considered the difference between prospective and retrospective approaches to delay analysis and whether they lead to the same results.

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Blog

Organ donation: have your say

Published on 26 January 2018. By Emma Kislingbury, Associate

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Organ donation is, for some, a difficult topic of conversation, but a Government consultation is encouraging us to think about it and share our views.

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Blog

ESMA to use new powers to attack the sale of CFDs and binary bets to retail investors

Published on 25 January 2018. By Lucy Kerr, Senior Associate

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ESMA has launched a public consultation on measures to protect retail investors investing in contracts for difference (CFDs) and binary bets. Potential changes include wide-ranging restrictions on the marketing and sale of CFDs, and a complete prohibition on the sale of binary bets to retail investors. An intervention would mark ESMA's first use of its new powers under MiFID II, which came into force on 3 January.

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Publication

2018 TerraLex guide to navigating cross-border copyright rules

Published on 24 January 2018. By Paul Joseph, Partner and Ciara Cullen, Partner

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Drawing together contributions from copyright experts in 21 territories we have found are key to global businesses, this guide explores questions regarding legislation and regulation, ownership, infringement, remedies, enforcement and copyright reform on a country-by-country basis.

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Blog

FOS consultation on SME access to Ombudsman service

Published on 23 January 2018. By David Allinson, Senior Associate

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The FCA is currently consulting on proposed new rules to allow larger small and medium sized enterprises to refer complaints to the FOS.

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Blog

FOS consultation on SME access to Ombudsman service

Published on 23 January 2018. By David Allinson, Senior Associate

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The FCA is currently consulting on proposed new rules to allow larger small and medium sized enterprises to refer complaints to the FOS.

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Publication

VAT Update - January 2018

23 January 2018

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In this month’s update we report on the VAT treatment of pension fund management services for insurers; the establishment of the EU cross-border prosecution service; and guidance published by HMRC following the Supreme Court’s decision in Littlewoods.

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Blog

Commodity specification breach – can I reject?

23 January 2018

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A common question which arises in day to day commodity trading is whether a buyer can reject goods which do not meet the specifications set out in the contract. This blog discusses the factors which commonly come into play in determining that question.

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Connected and Autonomous Vehicles: Changes ahead for UK road traffic laws

Published on 22 January 2018. By Sarah Hill, Legal Director

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The UK Government has recently launched a consultation on proposals to amend the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986 (Regulations) and the Highway Code. The proposed changes will clarify the legal position for use of features in Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CAVs) and should bring the UK law in line with recent updates to international rules.

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Blog

New Year, New You? How about joining the virtual reality gym…

Published on 19 January 2018. By Natalie Drew, Senior Associate

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Looking to beat the January gym rush? Well, look no further than American based firm Black Box VR who have combined gaming and gyming to create a virtual reality workout using just a resistance machine and headset.

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Blog

Incorrect Ownership Certificates: A Cautionary Tale

19 January 2018

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In a case which the judge deemed to be "a cautionary tale about how not to submit a planning application and its consequences", the High Court has recently tackled the question of the effect of incorrect ownership certificates submitted with planning applications. In considering the issue, the Court has given us a helpful reminder of when such an error might lead to the quashing of a planning permission.

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Blog

Thorny issues of jurisdiction and claim form service laid bare by High Court

Published on 18 January 2018. By Alex Wilson, Associate and Samantha Thompson, Associate

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In Howard Kennedy v The National Trust for Scotland [2017] EWHC 3368 (QB), the High Court considered two complex issues: one relating to the doctrine of forum non conveniens and the other to the CPR provisions on service of a claim form. In his judgment, handed down yesterday, Sir David Eady stayed the action in England & Wales on the basis that Scotland is the more appropriate forum. He also provided guidance on the tricky interplay between deemed and actual service of a claim form, ultimately holding that the claim form in this case had been validly served in time.

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Blog

Big Data, big problems?

Published on 18 January 2018. By Ella Shanks, Trainee Solicitor

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Big Data is here to stay, whether we like it or not. It has transformed the way businesses operate and continues to streamline everyday life for individuals. However, Big Data has big implications for privacy; this blog considers the highs and lows of Big Data and what the law is doing to intervene.

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Blog

Cooke: Tribunal allows taxpayer's discovery assessment appeal

Published on 18 January 2018. By Constantine Christofi, Associate

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In Cooke v HMRC [2017] UKFTT 844 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) has allowed an appeal against a discovery assessment issued by HMRC pursuant to section 29, Taxes Management Act 1970 (TMA). The FTT found that the 'hypothetical officer' could have been reasonably expected to be aware that certain claims in the taxpayer's return were excessive.

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Publication

Annual Insurance Review 2018

17 January 2018

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Welcome to RPC’s Annual Insurance Review for 2018.

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Blog

And the (Christmas) results are in: Part II

Published on 17 January 2018. By Henry Priestley, Senior Associate and Umut Bektas, Trainee Solicitor

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Since our previous update many retail companies across the UK have posted their festive financials with several big retailers posting disappointing Christmas results.

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Publication

Accountants

17 January 2018

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In this chapter of our Annual Insurance Review 2018, we look at the main developments in 2017 and expected issues in 2018 for accountants.

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Blog

Our latest set of retail law 'Snapshots' are now available

Published on 15 January 2018. By Alyson Lloyd, Senior Associate and Jonathan Greenway, Associate

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Each Snapshot focuses on the key questions: What's the development? Why does it matter? And what should you be doing about it.

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Blog

Notification under a specific clause must be clear

Published on 12 January 2018. By Rebecca Taylor, Associate

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Systems Pipework Limited (SPL) v Rotary Building Services Limited (RBSL) determines that where a clause may have a draconian effect it is necessary for notification of this clause to include reference to the clause and clearly comply with the clause's purpose and requirements.

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Blog

To each his own: which papers belong to the solicitor?

Published on 12 January 2018. By Claire Revell, Senior Associate

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Although it has previously been established that clients don't necessarily own all of their solicitors' file, clients don't always appreciate this when making a file request. Some recent case law provides support to solicitors when dealing with such requests.

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Blog

The FCA pledges to take action against providers of contracts for difference

Published on 12 January 2018. By Lucy Kerr, Senior Associate

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The FCA has concluded that consumers are at "serious risk of harm" due to the poor practices of some providers and distributors of CFDs. The regulator will take further action against at least one firm in its latest crack-down on these "complex, high-risk" products.

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Blog

Upper Tribunal refuses permission for judicial review of HMRC's policy on prior misapplication of law

Published on 12 January 2018. By Nicole Kostic, Senior Associate

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In The Queen (on the application of R Clarke and others) v HMRC [2017] UKUT 379, the Upper Tribunal (UT) refused an application for permission to judicially review HMRC's decision not to compensate the taxpayer beyond the scope of its published policy contained in Business Brief 28/04.

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Blog

Thoughts on the FCA's fund fee transparency proposals

Published on 11 January 2018.

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Alternative investment funds may soon be required to report total cost of ownership in a standardised form. Work on new templates in ongoing, and fund managers need to be aware of the situation and to be involved in this important debate that has so far been largely overlooked.

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Blog

Name and Shame: HM Land Registry to publish list of worst offenders

Published on 09 January 2018. By Claire Revell, Senior Associate

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HM Land Registry has announced plans to publish a list of the top 500 entities responsible for the highest number of applications and ranking them by their track record of correctly completing Land Registry forms and applications.

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Blog

欧州M&A最前線 2018年1月

Published on 09 January 2018. By Nigel Collins, Partner, Head of Japan Desk

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寒さ厳しい東京で、この記事を執筆している。幸い気温は低くても東京の雰囲気は温かい。 保険部門の同僚が、2018年に保険業界で予想される10大トピックスを公表した。非常に興味深い内容なので紹介する。

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Blog

And the (Christmas) results are in…

Published on 09 January 2018. By Henry Priestley, Senior Associate and Umut Bektas, Trainee Solicitor

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The focus of last year's post-Christmas update was Next's post-Christmas profit warning. This year however it was largely good news for the retailer as they reported that sales in the 54 days to 24 December 2017 were up by 1.5% compared to the same period in 2016. This is against Next's expectation in November 2017 that sales would fall by 0.3% for the period.

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Publication

Tax avoidance schemes and the duty to warn

Published on 09 January 2018. By Rachael Healey, Partner

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In a useful judgment summarising when a duty to warn arises, the Court of Appeal overturned the High Court’s decision and raised doubts over the applicable test when considering whether or not financial advisers have been negligent in advising on the risks associated with investments.

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Publication

Restructuring and Insolvency roundup January 2018

05 January 2018

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In this roundup, we look at crowdfunding, a sector which continues to be of interest to practitioners giving the changing regulatory landscape and the risk to investors. Other cases we look at include cover privilege in bankruptcy, the adequacy of ATE policies, and the requirement for boards to be quorate when directors appoint administrators.

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Blog

Unauthorised introducers, the Pension Ombudsman and SSASs

Published on 04 January 2018. By Rachael Healey, Partner

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The Pension Ombudsman has rejected a complaint against a SSAS provider in relation to investments in carbon credit investments made on the instigation of an unauthorised introducer. In contrast to FOS decisions we have seen, the Pension Ombudsman appeared to put the onus and risk on the consumer for engaging with an unauthorised introducer.

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Blog

Abortion clinics will be rated by CQC

Published on 03 January 2018. By Ella Shanks, Trainee Solicitor

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The Department of Health announces broader powers for the Care Quality Commission to rate independent healthcare providers.

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Blog

Documents from which legal advice can be inferred – are they privileged?

Published on 28 December 2017. By Christopher Whitehouse, Senior Associate and Davina Given, Partner

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The High Court considered the extent to which legal advice privilege could attach to documents which were not communications of legal advice between lawyer and client but from which privileged legal advice could be inferred and held that privilege could indeed apply to such documents. The test is whether there is a "definite and reasonable foundation" for such an inference to be made as opposed to material that would merely make the reader speculate what the legal advice was.

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