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Blog

Taxpayer succeeds on penalties issue in Pendulum scheme

Published on 10 August 2016. By Robert Waterson, Partner

In a recent case the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) has found that a taxpayer was not fraudulent or negligent in the completion of his tax return when relying on the advice of his professional advisors.

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Publication

Offer rejected by counter-offer - a cautionary tale

09 August 2016

Non-Part 36 offer not capable of acceptance once rejected by a Part 36 counter offer

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Blog

Office to Residential Permitted Development Rights – an update

08 August 2016

The rights to convert a building from office use to residential without needing to submit a planning application are not new, although a recent decision from the Planning Court have brought them back to the headlines and suggest that they may be more flexible than anticipated.

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Blog

Introducers & Inappropriate Influence

Published on 08 August 2016. By Matthew Watson, Associate

Last week must have been a busy one for those working at the FCA.

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Blog

5 Partners = 1 Invalid Break Notice

05 August 2016

Landlords beware – if you hold property in the name of a partnership which consists of more than four individuals, and you serve a break notice on your tenants in the partnership name, it may not be valid.

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Blog

The unexpected effect of Brexit on Part 36 offers

05 August 2016

Insurers may need to check the adequacy of any Part 36 offer they have made in claims where the claimant seeks damages in a foreign currency and may also need to reconsider whether to accept any Part 36 offer made by a claimant in such a case. This is particularly so where the Part 36 offer was made in sterling.

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Blog

Taxpayer wins appeal against HMRC after receiving contradictory tax demand

Published on 04 August 2016. By Alexis Armitage, Associate

In Walkers’ Baggage Transfer Company Ltd v HMRC [2016] UKFTT 0415 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) has allowed the taxpayer's appeals and concluded that the appellant had accounted for the PAYE properly due in relation to one of its employees over a three year period.

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Publication

Product Liability Update August 2016

04 August 2016

In this Update we take a look at some of the recent stories making the news, from electrical fires to mislabelled fishcakes.

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Publication

Read with "interest" - Part 36 offers

04 August 2016

In many cases it will be easy to determine whether a claimant has beaten their Part 36 offer and accordingly whether they are entitled to the additional benefits provided for under CPR 36.17(4). Sometimes, however, because of the interest accruing on damages between the date of the Part 36 offer and the judgment date, the judgment sum only exceeds the Part 36 offer by a small amount. If this happens, what are the consequences?

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Blog

Court of Appeal considers effectiveness of "in writing" variation clause

Published on 04 August 2016. By Simon Hart, Partner

In this case, the Court of Appeal was asked to consider the correct contractual interpretation of a long-term supply agreement. In its judgment, the Court of Appeal indicated, obiter, that including an 'in-writing only' variation clause in a contract would not prevent subsequent variation of the contract orally or by conduct in certain circumstances.

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Blog

Art works: businesses and the value of art

Published on 04 August 2016. By Sophie Newton, Associate

You're heading to a company's offices for a meeting. Does this company's involvement with art affect its success as a business, and if so, how?

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Publication

Tax update, August 2016

04 August 2016

In this month's edition we report on (1) HMRC's new guidance on contracting-out for defined benefit pension schemes (2) this years' tax take, (3) a new EU directive aimed at reducing corporate tax avoidance. We also comment on three recent cases concerning the validity of a discovery assessment, the tribunal's hardened approach to compliance with directions, and the validity of a notice of enquiry.

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Blog

Pension redress methodology – more changes afoot?

Published on 03 August 2016. By Matthew Watson, Associate

Unsuitable DB pension transfer to personal pension? Advisers have woken up this morning to the Financial Conduct Authority's announcement that next year may see an update to the methodology used to calculate redress due in such situations.

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Video

Collective redress and class actions regimes – from the US to Asia

03 August 2016

Antony Sassi - Partner, Asia - reviews the recent introduction of class action regimes in Asia and discusses why this changed litigation landscape is important for insurers.

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Blog

FCA finds shortcomings in principal firms' control and oversight of their ARs

Published on 03 August 2016. By Jonathan Charwat, Senior Associate

The Financial Conduct Authority's (FCA) report on its thematic review of principal firms and their appointed representatives (ARs) has identified significant shortcomings in their control and oversight.

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Video

MAR: enhancing investor protection, market integrity and harmonising the market abuse regime across the EU

Published on 02 August 2016. By Karen Hendy, Head of Corporate

Karen Hendy, Corporate Partner, explains the benefits and implications of the all new Market Abuse Regulation and highlights the grey areas to be aware of.

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Blog

Sanctions: brainteasers with serious consequences

Published on 02 August 2016. By Davina Given, Partner

Failure to comply with financial sanctions carries serious penalties, most notably in the US, where banks have collectively paid billions of dollars in fines.

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Blog

The "purpose" means the "dominant purpose"

Published on 02 August 2016. By Tim Brown, Partner

The Court of Appeal has recently dismissed an appeal in relation to the interpretation of a clause referring to "the purpose" of a transaction.

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Blog

Brexit and the housing crisis – where are we now?

01 August 2016

It is only a couple of months since the Government restated its 'one million homes by 2020' pledge. How does Brexit impact on this

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Blog

Brexit and the housing crisis – where are we now?

01 August 2016

It is only a couple of months since the Government restated its 'one million homes by 2020' pledge. It was always going to be a big ask, with talk of land banking, constructions skills shortages and delays in the planning system being bandied about on a regular basis

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Blog

Making a racket about the tennis pay gap

Published on 29 July 2016. By Charlotte Thompson, Associate

In 2015 Novak Djokovic, men’s world number one, received $21.65m in prize money whereas Serena Williams, women’s world number one, won less than half of that amount

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Blog

Part VII transfers: Court protects policyholder interests by modifying guarantees

Published on 29 July 2016. By Jonathan Charwat, Senior Associate and Matthew Griffith, Partner

High Court uses its powers to ensure third party guarantees continue to apply in the same way following Part VII transfer

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Publication

VAT update, July 2016

28 July 2016

In this month’s edition of our VAT update we will report on (1) the EU Council’s variation to the Principal VAT Directive relating to vouchers, (2) HMRC’s update on VAT Notice 708, and (3) a variation in the law on the applicably of VAT to offshore property held by insurers. We also comment on three recent cases concerning the supply of services by a bank, the applicability of VAT to an incomplete transfer of title, and whether VAT is payable on charitable donations.

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Publication

Follow the money

27 July 2016

How do you get your money back from a potential fraudster who has siphoned the money off into planes, luxury houses abroad and mysterious accounts? The English courts have a broad range of remedies available to help.

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Blog

Tribunal allows taxpayer's appeal as notice of enquiry was invalid

Published on 27 July 2016. By Adam Craggs, Partner

First-tier Tribunal (FTT) determined that HMRC had not given a valid notice of intention to enquire into the taxpayer's return because the purported notice of enquiry referred to tax year ended 6 April 2009, rather than 5 April 2009.

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Blog

Drones: don't fly out of bounds (legally)

27 July 2016

Various commercial industries have already woken up to the myriad opportunities offered by drone technologies. Whilst the regulatory regime evolves, it is important that companies don’t fall foul of the law.

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Blog

Planning: the sequential test

26 July 2016

For those involved in retail development, a recent Planning Court case serves as a helpful summary and update on the interpretation of the sequential test set out in para 24 of the NPPF.

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Publication

Winning the battle but losing the war

22 July 2016

We have previously commented on the need for claimants to establish all elements of a claim (duty, breach, causation and loss) if they want to achieve more than a Pyrrhic victory. The case of Mortgage Express v Countrywide Surveyors Limited provides another example of this, but with a slightly different twist.

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Blog

Pensions freedoms where are we now?

Published on 22 July 2016. By Rachael Healey, Partner

On 14 July 2016 the Financial Conduct Authority published three releases relating to pension freedoms. The releases provide an insight into the FCA's areas of concern following the introduction of the pension freedoms in April 2015.

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Blog

China’s richest man strikes deal to host new global football tournament

Published on 21 July 2016. By Joshua Charalambous, Associate

Earlier this month, it was reported that the Dalian Wanda Group planned to create a European club tournament to rival the UEFA Champions League.

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Blog

High Court criticises HMRC's conduct finding that it breached taxpayer's legitimate expectation

Published on 20 July 2016. By Adam Craggs, Partner

High Court criticises HMRC's conduct finding that it breached taxpayer's legitimate expectation

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Press and Media

Number of FCA dawn raids at its lowest level since the financial crisis

19 July 2016

60% fall in the number of raids in a year Concern that smaller scale financial crimes are slipping through the net

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Publication

Corporate tax update, second quarter 2016

19 July 2016

On 23 June 2016 the UK voted to leave the EU in an historic referendum result. A period of some political, economic and social uncertainty will undoubtedly follow (and we've already had a turbulent few weeks) but as far as corporate tax is concerned there should be no immediate consequences. It remains to be seen what happens to the planned further reduction in corporation tax to 15% as announced by the then-Chancellor George Osborne. Some initial views on the likely corporate tax consequences of Brexit are set out below. It has also been announced that Royal Assent to this year's Finance Bill is not now expected before the Autumn. In the aftermath of the referendum result, it is perhaps easy to forget that some significant changes to the UK corporate tax regime are planned. Whether all of these changes now proceed, at the pace originally intended, will become clear in due course. In this edition we therefore also highlight some of the key tax developments of interest to UK corporates from the second quarter of 2016.

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Blog

Price fixing online – a new competition authority warning

Published on 18 July 2016. By Alyson Lloyd, Senior Associate and Melanie Musgrave, Senior Associate

The UK's Competition and Markets Authority ("CMA") has released an open letter to suppliers and retailers warning against online practices which constitute price fixing.

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Blog

Failure to comply with direction leads to strike out of taxpayers' appeals

Published on 15 July 2016. By Adam Craggs, Partner

In the recent case of Grindley & Others v HMRC [2016] UKFTT 0834 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) has directed that the taxpayers' appeals be struck out for failure to comply with a direction issued by the FTT.

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Blog

High Court allows claim against foreign subsidiary and English parent company to be heard in the UK

Published on 13 July 2016. By Chris Ross, Partner and Simon Hart, Partner

The High Court has rejected applications by an English parent company and its Zambian subsidiary that claims brought against them in London should be dismissed in favour of proceedings taking place in Zambia.

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Blog

"Mis-selling" claim fails on appeal in Hong Kong

Published on 12 July 2016. By Jonathan Cary, Partner

Hong Kong Court of Appeal confirms challenges in bringing mis-selling claims against banks and financial intermediaries.

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Press and Media

Growth of App economy sees Telecoms trade marks up by a third

Published on 11 July 2016. By Jeremy Drew, Partner

Traditional telecoms companies innovate to remain competitive.

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Blog

Tribunal finds HMRC was not entitled to issue a discovery assessment

Published on 08 July 2016. By Adam Craggs, Partner

In Anderson v HMRC [2016] UKFTT 335 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) allowed the taxpayer's appeal and held that HMRC was not entitled to issue a discovery assessment pursuant to section 29(1) TMA, as the taxpayer had not been careless.

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Blog

Time Charters corrected on underperformance

07 July 2016

High Court narrows shipowners' defences to an underperformance claim

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Publication

Tiuta International Ltd (in liquidation) v De Villiers Surveyors

06 July 2016

The Court of Appeal recently overturned a first instance decision in an application for summary judgment in the matter of Tiuta International Ltd (in liquidation) v De Villiers Surveyors Ltd [2006] EWCA Civ 661

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Publication

Tax update, July 2016

06 July 2016

In this month's edition of our Tax Update we will report on HMRC's (1) revised corporate interest deductibility rules consultation, (2) new company taxation manual, and (3) off-payroll working and IR35 consultation. We also comment on three recent cases concerning 'trading', the applicability of income tax on employment termination payments, and SDLT planning.

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Blog

ISPs' appeal is "blocked" 

Published on 06 July 2016. By Ben Mark, Partner and David Cran, Partner

In a judgment handed down today, the Court of Appeal, led by Lord Justice Kitchin, has overwhelmingly rejected the appeal by the five largest ISPs and upheld the High Court decision to grant Richemont a blocking order requiring those ISPs in the UK to prevent access to various third party websites from advertising and selling goods which infringe Richemont's trade mark rights.

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Blog

Pension freedom advice complaints: Delays and insistent clients cause of concern for the FOS

Published on 01 July 2016. By Matthew Watson, Associate

Following reassuring news about low pension-related complaint numbers, the Financial Ombudsman's latest newsletter has revealed further details of the types of complaints they have received since the sweeping changes to the pension freedom rules in April of last year.

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Blog

Pre-judgment interest rate – prime plus 1%

Published on 30 June 2016. By Antony Sassi, Managing Partner, Asia

In May 2016 the Court of Appeal in Hong Kong handed down three consistent decisions confirming that (among other things) prime rate plus 1% should continue to be used as the starting point for awarding pre-judgment interest on damages awarded by the courts in civil disputes.

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Blog

Tribunal dismisses taxpayer's appeal as trade not conducted on a commercial basis

Published on 30 June 2016. By Adam Craggs, Partner

In Gray v HMRC [2016] UKFTT 0379 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) has held that a taxpayer conducting promotional activities for his musician wife was not entitled to set losses from those activities against profits from his legal business.

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Publication

VAT update, June 2016

29 June 2016

The result of last week's referendum on the UK's membership of the EU is likely to lead to a prolonged period of uncertainty in many areas of taxation

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Blog

6 top priorities for GCs following the Brexit vote

29 June 2016

6 clear priorities for in house legal leaders emerged from the dialogue that I had with Bruce Macmillan, the former in-house lawyer who heads our Centre for Legal Leadership:

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Blog

Pension Deed rectified by Summary Judgment without a hearing

Published on 29 June 2016. By Alan Williams, Partner and Geraldine Elliott, Partner

The High Court has recently granted summary judgment for rectification of a trust deed without a hearing. The judge did this "in such plain circumstances" where the evidence demonstrated that there was "no real prospect of a realistic challenge" to the position that the final version of the deed should have been executed, not an earlier draft.

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Blog

Brexit - a legal analysis: Competition

Published on 28 June 2016. By Lambros Kilaniotis, Partner

The implications for competition law and practice will very much depend on what form of Brexit the UK will end up negotiating. At one end of the spectrum the UK could join the European Free Trade Association and the European Economic Area, an avenue that is likely to generate the fewest changes. If the UK were to seek a total exit, falling back on World Trade Organisation (“WTO”) rules to continue trading with the EU, the potential changes would be more wide-ranging as outlined below.

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