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Joint defendants, default judgments and the limits of issue estoppel

Published on 30 June 2014. By Jake Hardy, Legal Director

In proceedings with multiple Defendants in which the Claimant had obtained default judgment against Defendant A, another Defendant, B, (which had statutory joint liability for A's actions) was not bound by an issue estoppel raised by the default judgment against A.

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FOS: for free or not for free?

27 June 2014

Should consumers pay a fee to bring a complaint to FOS? FOS handled 2.3m initial enquiries and complaints from consumers in 2013/2014.

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Blog

High Court gives stamp of approval to retrospective anti-avoidance legislation

27 June 2014

A challenge to the lawfulness of the retrospective effect of legislation amending section 45, Finance Act 2003 ('FA 2003'), fell at the first hurdle in a recent application for judicial review heard by Mrs Justice Andrews in R (on the application of St Matthews (West) Ltd and others) v HMRC [2014] EWHC 1848 (Admin).

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Know your regulator

27 June 2014

The importance of good relations with regulators has never been more important.

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Blog

Are long stops still a long shot

Published on 25 June 2014. By Amy Winterbourne , Associate

The long-running debate surrounding long stop time bars rumbles on, with articles appearing in the financial press this week which raise some interesting new points.

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Blog

Be careful what you dig for

20 June 2014

Beginning a project in an area of archaeological interest can be an historical minefield for both developers and contractors.

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Blog

Assessing compensation under cross-undertakings in damages: is remoteness relevant?

Published on 19 June 2014. By Dan Wyatt, Senior Associate

In short, yes; compensation under cross-undertakings in damages is assessed using the same rules as assessing damages for breach of contract, i.e. the principles of causation, remoteness and mitigation apply.

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Swap horror – not 'knowledge' for civil limitation

Published on 18 June 2014. By David Allinson, Senior Associate

A recent High Court decision (Kays Hotels Ltd v Barclays Bank Plc) has ruled that a firm cannot rely merely on the terms of an interest rate hedging product going against the customer to trigger "knowledge" under section 14A of the Limitation Act 1980 and thus time-bar a civil claim.

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Information notices suspended by FTT to allow the taxpayers to seek judicial review

Published on 18 June 2014. By Dan Wyatt, Senior Associate

In Whitefields Golf Club Ltd & Others v HMRC,[1] the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) ('FTT') suspended the effect of its decision in relation to information notices issued by HMRC pursuant to paragraph 1, Schedule 36, Finance Act 2008 (the 'information notices') which it had, less than two months earlier, confirmed on appeal.

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Whistleblowing partners – no need to add any mystery ingredient

12 June 2014

The Supreme Court has provided welcome clarification of the scope of whistleblowing protection for partners and members of LLPs in the case of Clyde & Co v Bates van Winkelhof[1].

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Two loans better than one – FTT allows taxpayer's appeal in 'benefit in kind' case

12 June 2014

In the recent decision of the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) (FTT) in Elizabeth Amri v HMRC, the FTT rejected HMRC’s interpretation of the employment-related loan legislation contained in Chapter 7, Part 3, ITEPA 2003 and allowed the taxpayer’s appeal.

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Court to give clarity on Mitchell?

12 June 2014

In order to try and provide much needed clarity on the effects of the Mitchell case on case management, Lord Dyson, the Master of the Rolls, is set to hear three appeals over two days on 16 and 17 June in respect of:

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New anti-avoidance rule targeting transfers of corporate profits

Published on 10 June 2014. By Ben Roberts, Senior Associate

This year's Finance Bill, which is expected to become law as the Finance Act 2014 in July, introduces a new anti-avoidance measure targeted at businesses operating through a group structure where there is in substance a significant "payment" of profits from one company to another.

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Blog

OHIM's position on colour marks is not black and white

Published on 09 June 2014. By David Cran, Partner and Ben Mark, Partner

OHIM has recently updated its 'Manual of Trade Marks Practice' so as to apply the Common Practice of the Scope of Protection of Black and White Marks (the 'Common Practice').

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Blog

Tribunal's decision not to follow its previous decision highlights the difficulties with the government's 'follower notice' proposals

Published on 06 June 2014. By Adam Craggs, Partner

In the recent case of Ardmore Construction Limited v HMRC, the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) ('FTT') dismissed the taxpayer's appeal and chose not to follow its recent decision in Perrin v HMRC.

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Blog

Copyright Alert: Browsing Defence

Published on 05 June 2014. By Paul Joseph, Partner and Ben Mark, Partner

The Court of Justice of the European (CJEU) has today handed down its long awaited decision in the Meltwater[1] case, confirming the general availability of the "browsing defence" to internet users.

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Blog

Court shuts door on challenge to arbitral tribunal's findings

Published on 03 June 2014. By Chris Ross, Partner

Applicants cannot use s.68 of the Arbitration Act to challenge indirectly the tribunal's finding of fact when they don’t like the decision made.

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Blog

The PRA's Stance on Solvent Schemes of Arrangement & Omnibus II

03 June 2014

The Omnibus II directive, which amends the text of the Level 1 Solvency II directive, was finally agreed in March 2014.

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Blog

Copycat packaging – time for reform?

Published on 02 June 2014. By David Cran, Partner and Ben Mark, Partner

The Trading Standards Institute (TSI) has opposed the basis of a consultation by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) on whether to grant a private right of action to businesses that fall victim to copycat packaging.

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Blog

How to get Google to remove outdated links to your personal data

Published on 30 May 2014. By Keith Mathieson, Partner

Google has today announced how it intends to deal with the European Court's judgment in the Google Spain case[1].

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Blog

How to succeed in business without losing your mind

Published on 29 May 2014. By Rebecca Rose, Associate

We have all been there. We have all felt that thud of dread when an email from that person drops into our inbox.

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Administrative Court quashes HMRC's refusal to disclose information

Published on 29 May 2014. By Oliver Knox, Senior Associate

In R (on the application of Privacy International) v The Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs,[1] the Administrative Court has quashed a decision by HMRC that it did not have a duty to disclose information concerning its export control functions.

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Blog

Games content rating pricing: TIGA keeps pressure on PEGI

Published on 29 May 2014. By David Cran, Partner

TIGA, the trade association which represents the UK video game industry, has increased the pressure on PEGI, the European game content rating system, to change its pricing policy.

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Blog

Is mindfulness good for business?

28 May 2014

Ask yourself this question, when did you last take the time to sit still for one minute and completely quiet your mind?

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Blog

Ignorance of the lawyer is no excuse

28 May 2014

Unsurprisingly, the Court of Appeal has found that inadequate legal representation, like ignorance of the law, is no excuse.

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Blog

Battle for better regulation continues with parliamentary inquiry

27 May 2014

In an apparent continuation of the Government's push to make regulators and regulation more cost-effective and business-centric, the Regulatory Reform Committee, a House of Commons select committee controlled by the Government, has announced an inquiry into the Government's Better Regulation framework.

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Blog

Supreme Court clarification on follow-on damages claims timing

Published on 27 May 2014. By Andy McGregor, Head of Civil Fraud

On 9 April 2014, the Supreme Court, reversing the Court of Appeal's decision, ...

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FCA findings on conflicts management in the commercial SME sector: encouraging, but only the start?

27 May 2014

The most surprising thing about today's FCA report on its conflicts of interest review in commercial insurance is the number of SMEs who arrange insurance through an intermediary.

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Tribunal criticises HMRC for producing 'untruthful' records

22 May 2014

In Kestrel Guards Limited v Revenue & Customs [2014] UKFTT 184 (TC) the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) ("FTT") allowed the taxpayer's appeal and discharged a penalty which had been imposed by HMRC for the late filing of PAYE cheques.

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Blog

Broker conflicts: thematic review– what can we expect?

Published on 22 May 2014. By Andrew Price, Senior Associate

The FCA will on 27 May 2014 be publishing its findings from its thematic review of broker conflicts of interest and remuneration in the UK SME general insurance sector. We will report on the review as soon as possible after publication.

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Blog

No damages for the solicitor whose private information was misused by a prostitute whom he'd short-changed

21 May 2014

In an unusual privacy claim decided last week, the High Court dismissed the majority of a solicitor's claims against a prostitute for misuse of private information, harassment, breach of confidence and breach of contract.

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Blog

A 'lush' result for Cosmetic Warrior; another 'bomb' for Amazon

Published on 21 May 2014. By Paul Joseph, Partner and Ben Mark, Partner

Following a recent defeat in the High Court,

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Blog

Osborne keeps up the pressure on the FCA and PRA with enforcement review

20 May 2014

A month after bringing the Regulator's Code into force as statutory guidance, George Osborne has announced that the Treasury will undertake a major review of enforcement decision-making at the FCA and the PRA.

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Blog

The end of 'excessive' executive pay?

19 May 2014

Executive remuneration has been a long standing concern of shareholders as they believe the level of remuneration received by executives and directors can be 'excessive' and is not always aligned with the performance of a company.

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Blog

Searching for answers – Google v Gonzalez

16 May 2014

Data protection unusually made headline news yesterday when the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Justice (the ECJ) handed down its landmark judgment on Google Inc. v. Mario Costeja González.[1]

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Blog

Interim decision in SFO's battle with Tchenguiz brothers

Published on 16 May 2014. By Alan Williams, Partner

"They wanted to get some scalps …. And now I'm going to butcher them"

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Blog

Are you a leader or a follower? - Tribunal gives guidance on the Rule 18 Lead Case procedure

15 May 2014

In the recent case of General Healthcare Group Limited v HMRC,[1] the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) ('FTT'), considered the application of Rule 18 of the Tribunal Procedure (First-tier Tribunal) (Tax Chamber) Rules (2009/273) ('the Rules') to follower cases where the lead case has chosen not to appeal the decision of the FTT.

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Blog

Arck advice could lead to a flood of claims

Published on 15 May 2014. By David Allinson, Senior Associate

There have been some recent developments in the on-going saga involving Arck LLP, Yorkshire bank and around 400 disgruntled investors.

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Blog

Agency corked

14 May 2014

In Bailey & Ors. (Joint Liquidators of D&D Wines International Limited) v Angove’s Pty Limited [2014] EWCA Civ 215, ...

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Blog

Print your heart out

Published on 12 May 2014. By Emma Kislingbury, Associate

All chocoholics will know that feeling of overwhelming panic when, in desperate need of a chocolate fix, you discover the cupboards are empty.

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Blog

Product trade mark registrations on the up as firms fight back from the bottom of the financial crisis

09 May 2014

As the sector fights back from the financial crisis, firms are starting to launch new products, investing heavily in intellectual property protections and differentiating their products through branding.

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Blog

First-tier Tribunal Strips Club of VAT Relief

09 May 2014

More exotic facts than are typical for a VAT case reached the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) (the FTT) last month.

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Blog

Advocate General fashions a designer-friendly Opinion in Karen Millen v Dunnes Stores

Published on 08 May 2014. By Jeremy Drew, Partner and Ciara Cullen, Partner

An Advocate General of the CJEU has recently handed down his Opinion following a referral from the Irish High Court in the case of Karen Millen v Dunnes Stores.

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Blog

Offshore Ombudsman Part II: busman's holiday continues in Jersey

07 May 2014

The creation of a joint Office of the Financial Services Ombudsman ("OFSO") for Guernsey and Jersey took a step closer on 1 April 2014 as the States of Jersey approved the Financial Services Ombudsman (Jersey) Law 201.

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Will Prince Charles's musings see the light of day?

07 May 2014

R (Evans) v Attorney General 2014 EWCA 254

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Vitol Bahrain v Nasdec General Trading: Commercial Court declines jurisdiction

02 May 2014

In the recent decision of Vitol Bahrain EC v Nasdec General Trading & Others the Commercial Court reaffirmed the need for caution when considering whether to bring foreign defendants within the jurisdiction of the English courts.

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New Regulators' Code

02 May 2014

As my colleague Sam Bishop has commented on our Financial Services Blog, the new Regulators' Code imposed by the government in April may have a marked impact on the direction of the FCA and PRA's regulatory approach, and in particular on the importance of economic growth.

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Blog

Deutsche Bank and UBS tax avoidance schemes succeed

Published on 01 May 2014. By Natalie Drew, Senior Associate

The cases of DB Group Services (UK) Limited v HMRC and HMRC v UBS AG[1] were heard together by the Court of Appeal in November 2013 and the decision was published last month.

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Blog

Government tries to tame the regulators

30 April 2014

The new Regulators' Code, first published by the aptly named Better Regulation Delivery Office in July 2013, came into statutory force on April 6.

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FCA takes on the competition with appointment of former CEO of Competition Commission

25 April 2014

The FCA has dispelled any doubts about how seriously it intends to take its new competition objective by announcing the appointment of David Saunders...

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