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Sports Ticker 10 – Mercedes F1, Newcastle Falcons promotion and Tokyo 2020 delayed

Published on 08 April 2020. By Jeremy Drew, Head of IP and Technology and Joshua Charalambous, Senior Associate and Stuart Harris, Associate and Samuel Coppard, Associate

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Welcome to the latest edition of the RPC Sports Ticker - providing fortnightly bite-size updates from around the sports industry.

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Blog

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme – attempts to address inaccessibility

Published on 08 April 2020. By Sukh Ahark, Partner and Lauren Murphy, Associate

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The UK Government has implemented changes to the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme in recognition of barriers faced by SMEs attempting to access the scheme.

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Blog

Fisher – TOAA rules not applicable to sale of business from a UK company to a Gibraltar company

Published on 08 April 2020. By Adam Craggs, Partner

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In S Fisher and Others v HMRC [2020] UKUT 62 (TCC), the Upper Tribunal (UT) allowed the taxpayers' appeals and held that the transfer of assets abroad rules did not apply to the sale of a business from a UK company to a Gibraltar company, which was under the control of the same directors and shareholders.

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Publication

Architects and COVID-19 – Practical Advice on complying with your Professional Standards

08 April 2020

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Since the UK Government announced its lockdown as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses have asked their employees to work remotely and that has affected many businesses where physical attendance of clients and sites is important. A recent RIBA survey reported that as many as 81% of architects are now working from home.

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Publication

International risk team: Mitigation in Trade Credit Insurance

07 April 2020

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The measures taken by governments around the world to halt the spread of COVID-19 are already having a significant impact on the global economy. The prohibitions on trade, and closures of businesses, unfortunately mean that an increase in defaults and insolvencies is inevitable.

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Blog

SM&CR temporary arrangements extended to 9 months for FCA solo-regulated firms

Published on 07 April 2020. By Jonathan Charwat, Senior Associate

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As well as giving general guidance on its expectations on how solo-regulated firms should be complying with SM&CR during the COVID-19 pandemic, the FCA has announced that it will permit unapproved individuals to cover for Senior Managers for up to 36 weeks. In a separate joint statement, the FCA and PRA confirmed that this rule change will not apply to dual-regulated firms but that the position is under review.

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Blog

Cyber Bytes - Issue 11

Published on 06 April 2020. By Richard Breavington, Partner and Christopher Ashton, Associate and Rachel Ford, Associate

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Welcome to Cyber_Bytes, our bi-weekly roundup of key developments in cyber, tech and evolving risks.

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Blog

Tax breaks to promote insurance sector

Published on 06 April 2020. By Antony Sassi, Managing Partner, Asia and Andrew Carpenter, Partner

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On 30 March 2020 the Financial Services Development Council (FSDC) published its paper “Insuring Hong Kong’s Future –Tax Recommendations to Enhance and Grow Hong Kong’s Insurance Industry”. This is a further step taken by the FSDC to enhance the competitiveness of the Hong Kong insurance market as a key global risk management centre and regional insurance hub. The several proposed tax measures would extend to both (re)insurance companies, brokers and individual policyholders.

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Publication

Singapore's COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) Act 2020 – Highlights and Commentary on Key Provisions for Temporary Relief for Inability to Perform Contracts

Published on 06 April 2020.

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The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a severe contraction in economic activity on a global scale, as a result of supply chain disruptions, manpower shortages, travel restrictions and a swift decline in demand. Singapore is likewise grappling with the economic symptoms of these ongoing waves of COVID-19 outbreaks, which will continue to dampen global economic growth.

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Blog

SC double decision on vicarious liability

Published on 03 April 2020. By Natalie Drew, Senior Associate

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Handed down on 1 April, the two, separate, Supreme Court judgments on vicarious liability were no April Fool's jokes; they are serious and welcome responses to a difficult issue.

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Blog

COVID-19: The groceries sector - temporary competition law exemption comes into force

Published on 03 April 2020. By Lambros Kilaniotis, Partner and Melanie Musgrave, Senior Associate

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In light of "exceptional and compelling reasons of public policy" arising from the Covid-19 pandemic, the Secretary of State (the "SoS") has announced temporary competition law arrangements in the groceries sector.

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Blog

Business Rates Reform – Response to COVID-19 and the 2020 outlook

Published on 02 April 2020. By Ben Taverner, Associate

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This year's budget, announced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak on 11 March, attracted particularly high levels of attention from the media and business community. The spread of COVID-19 has put enormous pressure on British businesses in the short-to-medium-term and bricks-and-mortar retailers are especially strained, having come into the crisis on the back of their worst trading conditions for a decade.

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Publication

Spotlight on private wealth - April 2020

Published on 02 April 2020. By Adam Craggs, Partner and Geraldine Elliott, Partner and Davina Given, Partner and Emma West, Senior Associate

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Our quarterly update is designed to keep you up to speed with developments in the private wealth world. In this edition we explore sham trusts, heritage property and removing trustees. We also keep pace with the latest developments in the art sector. If you have any feedback on this update or would like to know more about the issues covered, or anything else, get in touch.

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Blog

FCA's expectations of insurance firms

Published on 02 April 2020. By Jonathan Charwat, Senior Associate

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Over the last couple of weeks, the FCA has been publishing information and guidance for firms in relation to the COVID-19 crisis. In addition to its general update on COVID-19, the FCA has set out specific expectations of insurance firms.

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Publication

Tax update - April 2020

Published on 02 April 2020. By Adam Craggs, Partner

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In this month’s update we report on (1) HMRC’s updated guidance on certain arrangements which purport to avoid the ‘managed services companies’ legislation; (2) recently published draft legislation on voluntary restitution in the context of the loan charge; and (3) the Government’s decision to suspend the extension of IR35 to the private sector.

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Blog

Managing SM&CR during the Coronavirus crisis

Published on 02 April 2020. By Jonathan Charwat, Senior Associate

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This blog considers the challenges caused by CV-19 in relation to the governance and SM&CR compliance of regulated firms in the UK.

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Blog

EUIPO issues clarification on COVID-19 extension of time for trade mark and design proceedings

Published on 01 April 2020. By Alessandro Cerri, Associate and Ben Mark, Partner

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The EUIPO has issued a clarification in respect of Decision No EX-20-3 noting that the extension of deadlines in trade mark and design EUIPO proceedings to 1 May 2020 applies automatically.

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Publication

Health and Safety Bulletin – March 2020

01 April 2020

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Welcome to the latest edition of our Health and Safety update.

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Blog

COVID-19: the battle between fact and fiction

Published on 01 April 2020. By Emma Kislingbury, Associate

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In the era of fake news, and at a time of global panic, how is the government responding to the daily spread of unauthorised health claims around COVID-19?

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Blog

Back to Brexit – House of Lords EU Financial Affairs Committee recommendations on financial services after Brexit

Published on 01 April 2020. By Lucy Kerr, Senior Associate

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The House of Lords EU Financial Affairs Committee has published recommendations on the financial services industry post-Brexit. The Committee recognised that this may not be a government priority due to COVID19, but EU negotiations and the future of the UK's financial services industry will be important issues in future months.

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Blog

COVID-19: CMA provides guidance to business on its approach to co-operation in response to the pandemic

Published on 01 April 2020. By Lambros Kilaniotis, Partner and Melanie Musgrave, Senior Associate

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Businesses, which do not benefit from the specific competition law exemptions granted by the Secretary of State (in the groceries, Solent Ferries and healthcare services sectors), may co-operate without fear of enforcement action by the Competition and Markets Authority (the "CMA"), provided that this co-operation is undertaken "solely to address concerns arising from the current crisis and does not go further or last longer than what is necessary".

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Blog

Booth – Penalty appeal struck out

Published on 01 April 2020. By Constantine Christofi, Senior Associate

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In CF Booth Ltd v HMRC [2020] UKFTT 35 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) struck out the taxpayer's appeal against penalties imposed for deliberate inaccuracies in its VAT returns, on the basis that the appeal amounted to an 'abuse of process'.

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Blog

COVID-19: key financial workers

Published on 31 March 2020. By Rob Paine, Associate

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The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has released guidance on steps financial services firms should take to help identify 'key workers'.

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Podcast

The role of an insurance broker

31 March 2020

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Welcome to Insurance Covered! The podcast that looks at the inner workings of the insurance industry with the help of expert guests. This episode we are joined by Steve Ray, Director at Howden Group and our topic for discussion is the role of an insurance broker.

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Publication

Sports Ticker 9 – Fury, NASCAR and Sky Sports pause

Published on 31 March 2020. By Jeremy Drew, Head of IP and Technology and Joshua Charalambous, Senior Associate and Stuart Harris, Associate and Samuel Coppard, Associate

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Welcome to the latest edition of the RPC Sports Ticker - providing fortnightly bite-size updates from around the sports industry.

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Blog

COVID-19: The suspension of wrongful trading provisions and a moratorium for businesses in restructuring – what is the likely impact on your business?

Published on 31 March 2020. By Paul Bagon, Partner and James Whelan, Associate

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COVID-19: On 28 March 2020 the Business Secretary announced further new far-reaching measures to help businesses combat the financial impact of COVID-19. What it the likely impact of the suspension of wrongful trading provisions and a moratorium for businesses in restructuring on your business?

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Publication

The government-backed Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

30 March 2020

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The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) is part of a package of temporary measures to support businesses during these challenging times. The CBILS is intended to give lenders confidence to continue to provide finance to SMEs.

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Blog

Business Tenant Protection from Forfeiture under the Coronavirus Act 2020

Published on 30 March 2020. By Ben Taverner, Associate and Elizabeth Alibhai, Partner

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Following the Government's 23 March press release in which it was confirmed that commercial tenants who cannot pay their rents "because of Coronavirus" would be protected from eviction, legislation is now in force which goes some way to clarify what this means in practice.

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Blog

COVID-19 forces POS and FOS office closures – what does it mean for complaints?

Published on 30 March 2020. By Ashley Daniells, Associate and Christopher Cole, Associate

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The COVID-19 outbreak (and the subsequent UK lockdown) continues to impact our daily lives and it seems the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) and The Pensions Ombudsman (POS) are not immune. With office closures announced, we look at the impact this will have on outstanding complaints and those yet to be made.

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Blog

COVID-19: Virtual hearings - what we've learned

Published on 27 March 2020. By Dan Wyatt, Partner

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Remote court hearings have very quickly become the "new normal". We've taken part in a fair few in recent weeks so wanted to share some practical tips that we hope will help those about to enter the virtual courtroom….

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Blog

New FCA signposting travel insurance rules

Published on 27 March 2020. By Lauren Murphy, Associate

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Earlier this month the FCA published a policy statement detailing new requirements aimed at helping consumers with pre-existing medical conditions (PEMCs) obtain travel insurance. The new requirements demonstrate the FCA's continuing focus on improving the treatment and protection of vulnerable consumers accessing insurance and other forms of financial services.

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Blog

Hot off the Press: COVID-19 - Your workforce: a Q&A on claiming for wage costs through the Job Retention Scheme

Published on 27 March 2020. By Patrick Brodie, Partner and Kelly Thomson, Partner

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On 26th March, HMRC issued guidance on claiming for wage costs through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. We explore some answers to key questions and add some questions of our own.

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Blog

The Archers does Insurance – a light-hearted look at coverage issues following the Grey Gables explosion

Published on 27 March 2020. By Sian Morgan, Senior Associate

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For radio aficionados, the long running radio soap The Archers is a welcome daily escape from daily life. However, the last few episodes have not been without their drama. For a medmal insurance lawyer looking to unwind after a day of (home)working, there are a number of taxing fictional issues to which one can turn one's mind.

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Publication

Cybersecurity and COVID-19: Opportunities for change in the face of challenge

27 March 2020

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COVID-19 is not the first and will not be the last pandemic, but it is the first one that has brought the importance of cyber resilience and adaptability in the era of global trade to the forefront of many businesses' minds.

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Publication

Key regulatory guidance following COVID-19 pandemic

Published on 27 March 2020. By Gavin Reese, Partner

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As the world tackles the COVID-19 pandemic, the UK’s Regulators have published a host of useful guidance that firms should take good note of during this period of uncertainty. While not an exhaustive list, we hope this summary highlights the key obligations and requirements currently being brought in by the Regulators.

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Blog

COVID-19 Your workforce: a caution against putting equality on the backburner

Published on 27 March 2020. By Kelly Thomson, Partner and Rachel Pears, Inclusion & Diversity Lead / Internal Employment Counsel

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UK business, like much of the rest of the world, is and will, for some time, remain firmly in the grip of COVID-19's tentacles.

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Publication

Regulatory update - March 2020

Published on 27 March 2020. By Gavin Reese, Partner

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Welcome to the March edition of our monthly Regulatory Update, which aims to pull together key developments from the past month across the various UK regulators – and help you to navigate the regulatory maze.

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Publication

Insurance broker E&O exposures: COVID-19

26 March 2020

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As insurers brace themselves for large volumes of notifications across all lines of business relating to Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) we expect to see a second wave of E&O notifications by insurance brokers when policyholders (businesses and individuals) find themselves without adequate cover for losses relating to the pandemic. Some insurers are already seeing a spike in such notifications.

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Blog

COVID-19 – FCA's update for consumers

26 March 2020

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In the current unsettling time, in addition to publishing guidance for firms, the FCA is keen to maintain contact with consumers. The FCA wants to ensure consumers are being protected and therefore, is providing regular advice on the steps that consumers can take to stay aware of any potential impact on their finances.

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Blog

COVID-19 forces HMRC to temporarily change its stamp duty processes

Published on 26 March 2020. By Ben Roberts, Partner

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Yesterday (25th March) HMRC announced some "temporary" changes to its stamp duty processes, in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Publication

VAT update - March 2020

Published on 26 March 2020. By Adam Craggs, Partner and Rebekka Sandwell, Associate

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In this month’s update we report on (1) HMRC’s recently published policy paper in relation to the VAT liability of digital publications; (2) EU Council Regulation (EU) 2020/283 and Council Directive (EU) 2020/284 in relation to combatting VAT fraud; and (3) EU Council Directive (EU) 2020/285 in relation to the special scheme for small enterprises. We also comment on three recent cases which consider (1) whether a specific form is required for the notification of an assessment of VAT; (2) when VAT is collectable as a debt due; and (3) what constitutes a reasonable excuse for incorrectly issuing a zero-rating VAT certificate.

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Blog

The "war" against Coronavirus: implications for the Life Sciences industry when regulations are loosened

Published on 25 March 2020. By Dorothy Flower, Partner and Peter Rudd-Clarke, Legal Director

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Politicians have reached for military metaphors when setting out their response to the Coronavirus outbreak. Governments hope that the Life Sciences industry will win the fight against the virus by arming the healthcare sector with pharmaceutical and medical device solutions. In the first of a series of blog posts over the coming months on Coronavirus, we examine the pressures that industry must balance when responding to the call to arms.

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Blog

COVID-19 and Commercial Tenants' Rights Regarding Rent

Published on 25 March 2020. By Elizabeth Alibhai, Partner and Ben Taverner, Associate

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This blog sets out various issues for commercial tenants to consider in relation to impending rent payments and government intervention in response to Covid-19. We are currently fielding numerous enquiries from tenants seeking advice about whether rent holidays, reductions and other concessions can be obtained in these unprecedented times.

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Blog

COVID-19 and Commercial Tenants' Rights Regarding Rent

Published on 25 March 2020. By Elizabeth Alibhai, Partner and Ben Taverner, Associate

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This blog sets out various issues for commercial tenants to consider in relation to impending rent payments and government intervention in response to Covid-19. We are currently fielding numerous enquiries from tenants seeking advice about whether rent holidays, reductions and other concessions can be obtained in these unprecedented times.

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Blog

Credit Suisse: Appeal allowed as HMRC had failed to open a valid enquiry

Published on 25 March 2020. By Constantine Christofi, Senior Associate

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In Credit Suisse Securities (Europe) Ltd and others v HMRC [2020] UKFTT 86 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) allowed a company's appeal against a closure notice on the grounds that HMRC had not issued a valid notice of enquiry.

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Blog

COVID-19: help for supermarkets and other retailers with competition law compliance in challenging times

Published on 24 March 2020. By Lambros Kilaniotis, Partner and Melanie Musgrave, Senior Associate

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The Government is providing the supermarkets with the necessary comfort, so that they can co-operate with each other in order to keep the shelves stocked and deliveries continuing during the course of the COVID-19 crisis.

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Blog

COVID 19 Your workforce: What on earth is "furlough"?

Published on 24 March 2020. By Kelly Thomson, Partner and Patrick Brodie, Partner

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Meaning of furlough, especially in the context of companies dealing with the impact of COVID-19.

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Blog

COVID-19 - The official guidance on remote hearings; early engagement is key to success

Published on 24 March 2020. By Geraldine Elliott, Partner and David Cran, Partner

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COVID-19. The courts are trying to conduct "business as usual" as much as possible in this challenging climate. The latest official guidance, published on Friday, covers remote hearings in all Civil Courts in England & Wales; it relates to all types of hearings – applications, trials and appeals.

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Blog

COVID-19 Your workforce: pay and costs - practical ideas our clients are exploring

Published on 24 March 2020. By Patrick Brodie, Partner and Kelly Thomson, Partner

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COVID-19 Your workforce: pay and costs - practical ideas our clients are exploring. These are extraordinary times that place extraordinary pressures on all of us, including dealing with your workforce. We set out below some ideas that we are hearing about from our clients and some areas you may wish to think about in terms of your employee costs.

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