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Tax update, July 2017

Published on 04 July 2017. By Adam Craggs, Partner

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In this month’s Update we report on draft provisions for a EU wide cross-border tax planning disclosure requirement; changes to HMRC’s guidance on the WDF and announcements in the Queen’s Speech in relation to the next Finance Bill.

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Blog

Berlioz - ECJ confirms that third parties can challenge 'foreseeable relevance' of tax information exchange requests

Published on 03 July 2017. By Constantine Christofi, Associate

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In Berlioz Investment Fund SA v Directeur de l'administration des Contributions directes (Case C-682/15), the ECJ has confirmed that a Member State's national court can review a tax information request made by another Member State in order to assess whether the requested information is 'foreseeably relevant'.

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Blog

Payment against letters of indemnity – is it safe?

03 July 2017

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In the commodity trading world, it is traditional for payment to be made by the buyer against the presentation by the seller of certain shipping documents including bills of lading. That is the case whether payment is to be made under a letter of credit (LC) or by direct tender of documents to the buyer. However, a common practice has developed, particularly in the oil trade, for parties to agree in their contracts that the seller may, instead of presenting shipping documents to trigger payment, present a letter of indemnity instead. But there are risks to the buyer in paying against such letters of indemnity.

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Blog

Retail CFD firms face potential EU market-wide restrictions and further criticism from the FCA

Published on 03 July 2017. By Lucy Kerr, Senior Associate

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The European Securities and Markets (ESMA) has announced it is considering imposing restrictions on contracts for difference (CFD) trading that would mean seismic changes for the industry, whilst the FCA has announced its serious concerns about the CFD industry's continued failure to meet expectations regarding the treatment of retail clients.

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Blog

Defective service and culpable delay: a warning to claimants

Published on 03 July 2017. By Chris Ross, Partner and Andy McGregor, Head of Civil Fraud

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Commercial Court refuses application for alternative service and strikes out claim forms after claimant's delay in pursuing claim.

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Blog

Cherry picking in an adjudication is fine – as long as you're the Referring Party

03 July 2017

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It has been established for some time that Referring Parties have the right to 'cherry pick' its claim for the purpose of adjudication - essentially selecting part or parts of a wider application or dispute and referring those to an adjudicator to make an award on rather than the full dispute or an entire account.

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Blog

欧州M&A最前線 2017年6月

Published on 30 June 2017. By Nigel Collins, Partner, Head of Japan Desk

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ブレグジット交渉が始まり、与党・保守党と北アイルランドの民主統一党(DUP)の閣外協力もやっとのことで決まった。

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Blog

"NEW FLAMENCO" – Supreme Court reverses Court of Appeal

30 June 2017

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In a shock decision, the Supreme Court has allowed shipowners' appeal in the "NEW FLAMENCO". The Supreme Court held that the sale of the ship following the repudiation of the charterparty was not an act in mitigation, and was not relevant to the calculation of damages for breach of contract.

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Publication

VAT update, June 2017

Published on 29 June 2017. By Adam Craggs, Partner

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In this month's update we report on proposals for the reduced VAT rate for e-publications, HMRC's first publication of VAT Notes 2017, in which it explains changes to VAT for businesses, and the latest stage in the long-running compound interest litigation involving Littlewoods.

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Blog

FCA proposes remedies following asset management sector market study

28 June 2017

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The FCA today published the final findings of its asset management market study and it has announced the remedies that will be implemented to address the concerns previously identified.

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Blog

Continued FCA focus on appointed representatives – more regulatory interventions in the London Market

Published on 27 June 2017. By Jonathan Charwat, Senior Associate

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FCA announce follow up supervisory work and regulatory interventions on insurance intermediaries with networks of appointed representatives (ARs).

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Blog

Rai - Tribunal quashes penalties for non-payment of PPNs and criticises HMRC's 'nitpicking pedantry'

Published on 26 June 2017. By Constantine Christofi, Associate

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In Rai v HMRC [2017] UKFTT 0467 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) was critical of HMRC's conduct and cancelled assessments to penalties which it had issued for failure to pay on time amounts demanded in partner payment notices (PPNs), as the statutory payment period had not expired.

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Blog

Cowboys beware; the AML Sheriff is on her way

Published on 26 June 2017. By Rachael Ellis, Associate

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With under a year until the first Financial Action Task Force ("FATF") visit to the UK in a decade, the FCA is consulting on proposed changes to its Handbook as the new money laundering regulations ("MLR 2017") come into force today.

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Blog

Another bad bargain upheld: Wood v Sureterm Direct Ltd [2017] UKSC 24

Published on 23 June 2017. By Matthew Evans, Senior Associate and Geraldine Elliott, Partner

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The Supreme Court has dismissed an appeal in Wood v Sureterm Direct Ltd. The Court upheld the Court of Appeal's decision on the meaning of an indemnity clause, and agreed with its application of established contractual interpretation doctrine. The decision confirms the established judicial approach to contractual interpretation, namely the focus on the words of a given clause.

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Blog

Fitness and a Full Time Job

23 June 2017

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With sedentary and time-consuming jobs, it can be difficult to find the time to get the recommended level of exercise in each week. Rebecca May considers how to juggle fitness and a full time job.

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Publication

FCA consultation on pension transfers – what does it mean for advisers?

Published on 22 June 2017. By Robert Morris, Partner

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The FCA threatened it and now we have it – on 21 June the FCA published its consultation paper on DB transfers and safeguarded benefit conversions.

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Blog

Pitcher - Tribunal finds in favour of taxpayer in APN penalty appeal

Published on 19 June 2017. By Robert Waterson, Partner

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In Graham Pitcher [2017] UKFTT 0406 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) allowed the taxpayer's appeal against a penalty for non-payment of an Accelerated Payment Notice (APN) due to defects in the APN.

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Blog

Election results a mixed bag for retailers

Published on 14 June 2017. By Karen Hendy, Head of Corporate and Charlotte Thompson, Associate

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The immediate impact of last week’s election was a mixed bag for retailers in the UK, with some share prices falling whilst others were on the up following the result.

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Blog

Full and frank disclosure – how independent is your expert witness?

Published on 14 June 2017. By Tim Brown, Partner

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This Court of Appeal judgment considers the admissibility of expert evidence where the expert failed to disclose details of a professional relationship with a party.

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Blog

Even More Challenging Times – 5 More Risks Following The Grant of Planning Permission

14 June 2017

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This post is the second in a two-part series in which we highlight ten areas where the risk of a third party challenge against the grant of planning permission might arise. The list we have given is not exhaustive, but all issues fall within the broad parameters for judicial review grounds, being decisions which have been taken irrationality, ultra vires (outside the scope of the authority's powers), or with procedural irregularity.

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Publication

Election result may be a boost for insurers of highly regulated products

Published on 13 June 2017. By Peter Rudd-Clarke, Legal Director

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The political uncertainty following last week’s general election could in fact be good news for insurers of heavily regulated products, such as medical devices.

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Publication

Election result may be a boost for insurers of highly regulated products

Published on 13 June 2017. By Peter Rudd-Clarke, Legal Director

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The political uncertainty following last week’s general election could in fact be good news for insurers of heavily regulated products, such as medical devices.

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Publication

First advice/information decision after BPE

Published on 13 June 2017. By Nick Bird, Partner

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On 19 May 2017 His Honour Judge Moulder handed down his judgment in the case of the Halsall and others v Champion Consulting Ltd and others [2017] EWHC 1079 (QB).

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Blog

Archer: judicial review in the context of statutory tax appeals

Published on 13 June 2017. By Michelle Sloane, Senior Associate

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The High Court's judgment in R (on the application of Archer) v HMRC [2017] EWHC 296 (Admin) is one of a number of recent decisions where it has been found that the taxpayer had not challenged HMRC's decision in the correct forum.

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Blog

Responsibility of a parent company for the acts of its subsidiary

12 June 2017

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The Court provided helpful analysis of the circumstances in which a parent company owes a duty of care with regard to operations carried out by its subsidiary. The case is interesting to examine in the context of the readiness of the English courts to hear claims relating to conduct outside of the jurisdiction brought by foreign claimants.

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Blog

Will robo-advice mean checkmate for human financial advisers?

Published on 09 June 2017. By George Smith, Senior Associate

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With continuing advances in artificial intelligence and the rise in 'robo-advisers', is financial advice following in the footsteps of chess, where computers have long since outstripped humans in ability? Are human financial advisers nearing checkmate or is the endgame still unclear?

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Publication

Health and safety law update, June 2017

Published on 09 June 2017. By Nick McMahon, Head of Health and Safety

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This issue includes details on The Sentencing Council publishing a new guideline for entering an early guilty plea, in addition to the most recent fines and sentences imposed on companies around the UK.

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Blog

Tackling the Problem of Fake News

08 June 2017

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It is widely believed that fake news has had an impact on some of the most controversial recent political decisions.

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Blog

Why the winner won't take it all in tomorrow's General Election

07 June 2017

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William Kark, RPC Trainee, considers the other key players - such as backbenchers, House of Lords, Gina Miller - in the General Election on 8 June 2017.

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Blog

Lightning in a Bot-tle – political conversation in the age of automation

Published on 06 June 2017. By Jonathan Greenway, Associate

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Robots are responsible for one in eight tweets about the General Election.

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Blog

Challenging Times - 5 Risks Following The Grant of Planning Permission

06 June 2017

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Developers and local authorities will be only too aware that third parties can challenge a grant of planning permission through the courts by way of a judicial review. An application for such a challenge is costly, and must be made quickly. Further, it can only be brought on limited grounds. Whilst this may offer a developer or local authority some comfort, it is worth being aware of some of the more common grounds of challenge so that steps can be taken to minimise the risk of these arising.

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Blog

Brexit means Brexit?

Published on 05 June 2017. By Emily Rome, Associate

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Blog

EBA encourages banks to pool their resources for cloud audits

Published on 02 June 2017. By Joseph Byrne, Associate

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The EBA has set out that banks are no longer required to provide their auditors (or themselves) with an independent right to audit their cloud service providers.

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Publication

Exemption clauses have teeth ‒ negotiate contracts carefully

Published on 02 June 2017. By Ben Goodier, Partner and Claire McNicholl, Senior Associate

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The Court of Appeal has recently provided guidance on the application of the contra preferentum rule.

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Blog

Impact of the EU’s distribution regime remains unclear

Published on 02 June 2017. By Matthew Griffith, Partner

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Intermediary market heading for change with Insurance Distribution Directive’s introduction

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Blog

Rendall - Tribunal reduces penalties imposed for failure to file a partnership return to nil

Published on 01 June 2017. By Constantine Christofi, Associate

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In Rendall v HMRC [2017] UKFTT 356 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) has reduced penalties imposed on partners for failure to file a partnership return on time to nil as the requisite information had already been disclosed to HMRC in the partners' personal self-assessment returns.

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Publication

Tax update, June 2017

Published on 31 May 2017. By Adam Craggs, Partner

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In this update we report on the scope of the Criminal Finances Bill as it receives Royal Assent; HMRC guidance updates for businesses, individuals and agents on how to make disclosures of unpaid tax; and HMRC’s further consultation on Making Tax Digital.

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Blog

FCA review of suitability finds big is best

31 May 2017

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Bigger, restricted firms scored better in the FCA's suitability review and so supervisory focus will be on smaller firms as the FCA plans a follow up review in 2019.

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Blog

Tager – Application to suspend penalties for failing to comply with information notices rejected

Published on 30 May 2017. By Alexis Armitage, Associate

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In HMRC v Romie Tager QC the Personal Representative of Osias Tager [2017] UKUT 161 (TCC), the Upper Tribunal (UT) refused an application that it should exercise its discretion under Rule 5(3) of the Tribunal Procedure (Upper Tribunal) Rules 2008 (the Upper Tribunal Rules) and suspend the effect of its decision to impose tax-related penalties for failing to comply with information notices, pending an appeal to the Court of Appeal.

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Blog

欧州M&A最前線 2017年5月

Published on 26 May 2017. By Nigel Collins, Partner, Head of Japan Desk

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市場とメディアは間もなく実施される英総選挙やトランプ米大統領提訴の可能性、先のサイバー攻撃の話題で持ち切りだが、英国では交渉中のM&A(企業の買収・合併)案件数が増えており、投資継続への意欲も高いように見える。これらの交渉の多くが実現するかは、時が経って初めて分かるだろう。

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Blog

A Simple Twist of ATE

Published on 25 May 2017. By Philip McCormack, Associate

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This blog considers the pitfalls of over-reliance on ATE cover and suggested solutions.

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Part VII transfers – through the FCA's microscope

Published on 24 May 2017. By Neil Brown, Partner and Joy Tickler, Associate

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Draft FCA guidance sheds light on its approach to Part VII insurance business transfers and aims to reduce the time and cost required to undertake a transfer.

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Publication

VAT update, May 2017

Published on 24 May 2017. By Adam Craggs, Partner

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In this month’s update we report on HMRC’s revised guidance on holding companies’ input VAT recovery, prelaunch trials for the online tribunal appeals service and draft legislation effecting the removal of the “use and enjoyment” rule for the supplies of B2C telecommunication services.

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Blog

Pre-loading the pre-app?

24 May 2017

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Discussion on the planning pre-app process considering cost and time considerations and the benefits and concerns of going through this initial advice process.

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Publication

Customs and excise quarterly update, May 2017

Published on 23 May 2017. By Adam Craggs, Partner

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In this update we report on the launch of the register of approved UK alcohol wholesalers, HMRC’s Customs Information Paper 5 (2017) (CIP 5), which clarifies the correct codes to use when sending free circulation goods to the special territories of the EU, and the new address for HMRC’s National Clearance Hub.

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Blog

BCM – Tribunal grants taxpayers' application for closure notices

Published on 22 May 2017. By Nicole Kostic, Senior Associate

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In BCM Cayman LP and others v HMRC [2017] UKFTT 0226 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) directed HMRC to issue closure notices within specified time periods in respect of its enquiries into certain of the applicants' tax returns, pursuant to section 28B, Taxes Management Act 1970 (TMA) and paragraph 33, Schedule 18, Finance Act 1998 (FA 1998).

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The 21st Century Silk Road – China's Belt & Road Initiative

18 May 2017

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China's "One Belt, One Road" has attracted widespread attention in Asia since 2013. But what is it about? What are the opportunities ahead? And what should foreign investors be aware of?

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Publication

Court of Appeal overturns decision on confidentiality in Huntington’s case

Published on 17 May 2017. By Sian Morgan, Senior Associate

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The Court of Appeal ruled that clinicians treating a man with Huntington’s Disease (HD) may have owed a duty of care to disclose his condition to his daughter and that the case should be remitted for trial.

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Publication

Wealth and trusts quarterly digest

Published on 17 May 2017. By Adam Craggs, Partner

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Our quarterly digest provides up to date commentary and analysis on key sector developments from our tax, wealth and trusts teams.

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Blog

You can't park there!

17 May 2017

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A summary of the May 2017 Court of Appeal decision in Khodari relating to whether parking permit restrictions can be secured in agreements made under s106 Town and Country Planning Act 1990.

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