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Toasted sandwiches are standard-rated “hot food” for VAT purposes

21 August 2014

In Sub One Ltd (t/a Subway) v HMRC[1] the Court of Appeal has upheld the decisions of both the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) and the Upper Tribunal (UT) that toasted sandwiches and "meatball marinara" are "hot food" and therefore, for VAT purposes, amount to standard-rated supplies. This decision has implications for a number of fast food outlets.

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Treading uneven boards: VAT claims and setoff – Birmingham Hippodrome Theatre Trust Ltd v HMRC [2014] EWCA Civ 684

Published on 14 August 2014. By Robert Waterson, Partner

The Court of Appeal's decision in this case is likely to create a great deal of uncertainty for taxpayers seeking to recover unlawfully levied VAT from HMRC.

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Let's talk about VAT – a useful reminder

Published on 14 August 2014. By Ben Roberts, Senior Associate

A recent Court of Appeal decision (CLP Holding Co Ltd v Singh and Kaur[1]) serves as a reminder to consider VAT during sale negotiations, and ensure that VAT wording in contracts is sufficiently clear.

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FCA fines general insurer £8.4m for TCF and Conduct Risk failings

Published on 11 August 2014. By Andrew Price, Senior Associate

The FCA's latest enforcement action in the general insurance sector is a useful source of conduct risk guidance and a reminder that firms cannot delegate their regulatory responsibilities to outsourced service providers, not even to those that are themselves FCA authorised.

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HMRC closing the gap on tax avoidance

07 August 2014

Anyone who has invested in, promoted, or advised on any form of tax mitigation scheme may be feeling slightly nervous following the latest announcement from HMRC concerning the on-going saga of tax avoidance. And understandably so.

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"Fashioning" prior art – CJEU ruling on unregistered Community designs

Published on 07 August 2014. By Jeremy Drew, Partner

On reference from the Irish Supreme Court, the Court of Justice of the European (CJEU) has provided further commentary on the scope of prior art required to invalidate an unregistered Community design.

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Trading "with a view to the making of a profit" - an objective or subjective test?

Published on 06 August 2014. By Dan Wyatt, Senior Associate

In Beacon Estates (Chepstow) Ltd v HMRC [2014] UKFTT 686 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) ('FTT') allowed the taxpayer's appeal, holding that 'with a view to' in section 393A(3), Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1988 ('ICTA')[1] imports an objective test when considering relief for trading losses.

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CoCos go pop!

05 August 2014

In the wake of the banking crisis, the Financial Services Act 2012 gave the FCA a range of new and enhanced powers with which to pursue its regulatory objectives.

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Transfer of corporate profits – update

Published on 04 August 2014. By Ben Roberts, Senior Associate

Earlier in the year I posted a blog on the proposed new anti-avoidance measure, targeted at so-called "profit transfers" from one group company to another.

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Don't delay when requesting a stay under the Community Trade Mark Regulations

Published on 04 August 2014. By Jeremy Drew, Partner

In proceedings in which the defendants have already been found liable for passing off and trade mark infringement in respect of the BETTY BOOP trade marks, the High Court has rejected the defendants' application to have the remaining copyright infringement and trade mark invalidity proceedings stayed in favour of earlier, related Italian proceedings.

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Holding back the crowds: How regulators are stifling the crowdfunding industry

31 July 2014

Crowdfunding is nothing new. Over the past few years, it has evolved from a little-known and rarely-used concept by which small businesses could raise money, to a truly viable alternative to venture capital.

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Holding back the crowds: How regulators are stifling the crowdfunding industry

31 July 2014

Crowdfunding is nothing new. Over the past few years, it has evolved from a little-known and rarely-used concept by which small businesses could raise money, to a truly viable alternative to venture capital.

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The Rangers Case and EBTs

Published on 31 July 2014. By Robert Waterson, Partner and Adam Craggs, Partner

The following was taken from a longer article by Robert Waterson and Adam Craggs originally published in Tax Journal (25 July 2014, pp16-17, www.taxjournal.com).

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Trust and wealth disputes update

29 July 2014

Our latest trust and wealth disputes update is available by clicking here. Topics include:

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Reasonable excuse

24 July 2014

In the recent case Spink v HMRC[1] the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) ('FTT') allowed the taxpayer's appeal against the imposition of penalties by HMRC for late payment, as it was satisfied that the taxpayer concerned had a reasonable excuse for the late payment.

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Solicitors beware! Fraudsters want your client account!

Published on 24 July 2014. By Jonathan Wyles, Legal Director

A solicitor's client account has long been a target for fraudsters.

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Manage your damages expectations! Says the Commercial Court

23 July 2014

The Commercial Court recently dampened the Fiat car group's hopes of receiving a loss of profits pay out from Lotus by dismissing its application for summary judgment on a claim for repudiatory breach of contract[1].

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An enquiry is as an enquiry does – HMRC's narrow interpretation of what constitutes an enquiry is rejected by the Upper Tribunal

Published on 17 July 2014. By Robert Waterson, Partner

The recent case of Portland Gas Storage Limited v The Commissioners for HMRC [2014] UKUT 0270 (TCC), considered two important questions: what is an enquiry? and what is a decision?

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ABI proposals on home and motor insurance renewal pricing

16 July 2014

The ABI has recently announced that it has written to the FCA setting out its proposals to improve transparency and clarity for customers when renewing their motor and home insurance policies.

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Has the FOS decided Lehman's collapse was not foreseeable; or is that too remote a hope?

Published on 15 July 2014. By Lucy Joyce, Senior Associate

Nearly six years have elapsed since we first saw the iconic photographs of Lehman Brothers' employees filing out of the former bank's worldwide headquarters, carrying their belongings in cardboard boxes.

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Be prepared to mediate or prepare to pay

11 July 2014

The High Court has ordered costs on an indemnity basis after a continuing and unreasonable failure on the part of the Defendant to engage with mediation before then accepting a Part 36 offer late following trial.

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Enhancing Supervision: How will the FCA's new regulatory model work in the real world?

10 July 2014

Readers may recall the FSA's 'close supervision' of firms, which could arise after an ARROW visit if significant failings were identified.

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Tax 'tsunami': will litigation wave crash over tax advisers and IFAs as Revenue uses new powers?

10 July 2014

New powers which will be introduced via the Finance Act 2014 are leading to investors in tax schemes crystallising their tax losses much sooner than anticipated.

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Taxpayer succeeds in loss relief claim

Published on 10 July 2014. By Dan Wyatt, Senior Associate

In Hamilton & Kinneil (Archerfield) Ltd and others v HMRC [2014] UKFTT 350 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) ('FTT') held that a company which had not made a cash capital contribution to a limited liability partnership could nonetheless claim loss relief against its other profits in respect of losses incurred by the limited liability partnership.

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Hong Kong: broker commission – proposed rules of conduct

Published on 10 July 2014. By David Smyth, Senior Consultant

A key provision of the Insurance Companies (Amendment) Bill 2014 is the formation of an independent Insurance Authority (IA) to take over from the Office of the Commissioner of Insurance.

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The problem with plain cigarette packaging

Published on 09 July 2014. By Jeremy Drew, Partner

This interview was first published on Lexis®PSL Commercial on 7 July 2014.

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Repudiation: dentist's breach does not go to the root of the contract

Published on 03 July 2014. By Daniel Hemming, Senior Associate

The Court of Appeal has determined that the actual and threatened breach by a dentist of the payment terms (requiring payments to be made monthly) for the use of a practice, was not a repudiation of the contract and the principal was wrong to terminate the contract.

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Blog

Pre-packs – improving a bad reputation?

Published on 03 July 2014. By Rachael Healey, Partner

Pre-packs involve the pre-determined sale of a business before it enters administration, allowing a sale within days of an administrator's appointment.

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HMRC fail to demonstrate negligence in tax planning case

03 July 2014

In the case of R, A and M Gardiner v HMRC[1], the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) ('FTT') overturned penalties imposed by HMRC on the appellant taxpayers for negligently filing their returns.

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FOS in the D&Ock

02 July 2014

FOS is back in Court defending its latest jurisdictional land grab.

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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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