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Publication

Hong Kong courts begin use of video conferencing

Published on 15 April 2020. By Antony Sassi, Managing Partner, Asia and Carmel Green, Partner

Given the extended general adjourned period (GAP), during which the courts in Hong Kong have been closed except for urgent and essential court business, the judiciary has adopted an incremental approach to the use of technology for remote hearings.

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Publication

Litigation in the time of Coronavirus (Hong Kong - Update)

Published on 15 April 2020. By Antony Sassi, Managing Partner, Asia and Jonathan Crompton, Partner and David Smyth, Senior Consultant

The "General Adjourned Period" (GAP) during which the courts in Hong Kong have been closed, save for urgent and essential court business, has been extended to 13 April 2020.

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Blog

Back to the Future: a look ahead at medical malpractice issues for COVID-19-related claims

Published on 15 April 2020. By James Davies, Senior Associate

Future issues for Insurers to consider in assessing COVID-19 medical malpractice / clinical negligence claims.

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Press and Media

RPC advises on the sale of a majority stake in British luxury luggage brand Globe-Trotter to Oakley Capital

Published on 15 April 2020. By Daniel Kulcsar, PR & Communications Manager

RPC has advised the owners of British luxury luggage brand Globe-Trotter on the sale of a majority stake to the private equity firm Oakley Capital. RPC acted as English counsel, supporting Japanese law firm southgate in its role as global deal counsel.

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Blog

Higgs – FTT lacks jurisdiction to disapply the PAYE Regulations

Published on 15 April 2020. By Constantine Christofi, Senior Associate

In Philip Higgs and Others v HMRC [2020] UKFTT 117 (TC), the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) determined that it did not have jurisdiction to determine whether HMRC is entitled to exercise a discretion under section 684(7A), ITEPA, to disapply the PAYE Regulations.

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Publication

Hong Kong Court of Appeal hears appeal using video conferencing

Published on 15 April 2020. By Charles Allen, Partner and Carmel Green, Partner

On 2 April 2020 the Chief Judge of the High Court issued a Guidance Note setting out the practice for remote hearings in the Court of First Instance of the High Court (but not the District Court) using the court's existing video conferencing facilities (VCF). Hard on its heels, on 6 April 2020 the Court of Appeal conducted a hearing by VCF in CSFK v. HWH [2020] HKCA 207.

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Blog

Signing documents during COVID-19 in Hong Kong

Published on 14 April 2020. By Jason Carmichael, Partner and Stephanie Northcott, Registered Foreign Lawyer

This blog gives some practical advice on using electronic signatures in Hong Kong to sign documents during the Covid-19 restrictions, including where signatories and others are working from home without access to usual printing and scanning facilities.

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Blog

International risk team: To repair or not to repair

14 April 2020

A universal truth for businesses in the grip of the current global pandemic is that “Cash is King”.

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Podcast

Mental health and wellbeing in the insurance industry

14 April 2020

Welcome to Insurance Covered! The podcast that looks at the inner workings of the insurance industry with the help of expert guests. This week we have Nick Bloy, Founder of Wellbeing Republic, and the topic of discussion will be mental health and wellbeing with a particular focus on the insurance industry. Nick talks about his career journey, starting as a lawyer before moving into a mental health and well being role.

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Blog

Disciplinary investigations against architects #4 - investigations panel stage

Published on 14 April 2020. By Sarah O'Callaghan, Associate

Further to our previous three articles which provided (1) an overview of the Architect Registration Board's disciplinary process and (2) a review of the complaints stage (3) the review stage, this article explains the next stage of a disciplinary investigation against an Architect: the investigations panel stage.

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Blog

Disciplinary investigations against architects #4 - investigations panel stage

Published on 14 April 2020. By Sarah O'Callaghan, Associate

Further to our previous three articles which provided (1) an overview of the Architect Registration Board's disciplinary process and (2) a review of the complaints stage (3) the review stage, this article explains the next stage of a disciplinary investigation against an Architect: the investigations panel stage.

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Blog

Could I mitigate my losses by using my premises for other purposes?

Published on 14 April 2020. By Catherine Young, Associate

With the inevitable impact of the coronavirus on retail businesses, many will be looking to mitigate their losses. One obvious way of doing this would be to use their premises, often their single largest overhead, for other uses. But is this possible and what must you consider?

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Blog

Could I mitigate my losses by using my premises for other purposes?

Published on 14 April 2020. By Catherine Young, Associate

With the inevitable impact of the coronavirus on retail businesses, many will be looking to mitigate their losses. One obvious way of doing this would be to use their premises, often their single largest overhead, for other uses. But is this possible and what must you consider?

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Blog

COVID-19 HK: Employment Update

Published on 14 April 2020. By Jason Carmichael, Partner and Beverly Yee, Senior Associate

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, it is anticipated that more and more businesses will need to make plans for cost-cutting measures.

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Blog

Cyber_Bytes - Issue 10

Published on 10 April 2020. By Richard Breavington, Partner and Christopher Ashton, Associate and Rachel Ford, Associate

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

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Blog

COVID-19: Good news on wrongful trading provisions but why should directors tread carefully?

Published on 09 April 2020. By Tim Moynihan, Senior Associate

The Government has launched a number of initiatives to assist companies and businesses to trade through the current financial stress. But what should directors still be aware of as they steer their organisations through these unprecedented times?

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Blog

COVID-19 prompts changes to working arrangements for the Court of Justice of the European Union

Published on 09 April 2020. By Louise Morgan, Senior Associate and Alessandro Cerri, Associate

Prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the CJEU announced, on 19 March 2020, that it will be temporarily changing its working arrangements.

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Blog

COVID-19: Your workforce – furloughing - act to mitigate the risk of exposure to tax evasion offences as scheme could be open to abuse

Published on 09 April 2020. By Alice Kemp, Associate (Employed Barrister)

Jim Harra, Chief Executive at HMRC, has informed a Treasury Committee meeting that he expects the government's multi-billion pound employee furlough scheme to be targeted by criminals seeking to exploit the £60 billion pledged in Chancellor Rishi Sunak's unprecedented Coronavirus protection package.

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Blog

COVID-19: Your workforce – furloughing - act to mitigate the risk of exposure to tax evasion offences as scheme could be open to abuse

Published on 09 April 2020. By Alice Kemp, Associate (Employed Barrister)

Jim Harra, Chief Executive at HMRC, has informed a Treasury Committee meeting that he expects the government's multi-billion pound employee furlough scheme to be targeted by criminals seeking to exploit the £60 billion pledged in Chancellor Rishi Sunak's unprecedented Coronavirus protection package.

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Blog

COVID-19: Trials - the show must go on

Published on 09 April 2020. By Alexandra Anderson, Partner

Judges are taking to heart the HMCTS's guidance focused on encouraging judges to maximise the use of video and telephone hearings using current technology. So, while the theatres in the UK remain closed, the theatres of justice continue with their activities.

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Blog

COVID-19: Trials - the show must go on

Published on 09 April 2020. By Alexandra Anderson, Partner

Judges are taking to heart the HMCTS's guidance focused on encouraging judges to maximise the use of video and telephone hearings using current technology. So, while the theatres in the UK remain closed, the theatres of justice continue with their activities.

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Publication

“Tech, lies and video-conferencing”: The Court’s implementation of remote hearings

09 April 2020

Perhaps very few legal practitioners would have thought that an establishment so rooted in 19th century custom and tradition would be so willing to adopt comparatively modern means of navigating the logistical challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Blog

The new Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme

Published on 09 April 2020. By Sukh Ahark, Partner and Lauren Murphy, Associate

The Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) is designed to allow larger businesses to access emergency funding and to give banks the confidence to lend to many more businesses which are impacted by coronavirus.

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Blog

COVID-19 and tax residence

Published on 09 April 2020. By Ben Roberts, Partner

This blog considers the potential risks posed by the COVID-19 pandemic to maintaining offshore tax structures.

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Blog

COVID-19 and tax residence

Published on 09 April 2020. By Ben Roberts, Partner

This blog considers the potential risks posed by the COVID-19 pandemic to maintaining offshore tax structures.

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Blog

COVID-19 – Hong Kong Courts handling urgent and essential matters

Published on 09 April 2020. By Charles Allen, Partner and Sakshi Buttoo, Legal Manager

On 8 April 2020, the Hong Kong Judiciary announced that the general adjourned period ("GAP") for court proceedings will continue until at least 3 May 2020. During the GAP, court registries and offices are, for the most part, closed. However, the GAP does not apply to "urgent and essential court hearings and/or matters".

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Publication

International risk team: Practical suggestions for prompt payment on complex claims

08 April 2020

In the current climate, settling claims and getting funds to an assured promptly is as vital now as it ever was.

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Blog

Parental controls: when does standing consent put subsidiaries' documents within its parent's control?

Published on 08 April 2020. By Tim Brown, Partner and Karina Plain, Associate (Australian qualified)

A parent company does not exercise control over the documents of, or held by, its subsidiaries merely by virtue of its shareholdings in those subsidiaries.(1).

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Publication

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

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

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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Press and Media

RPC advises leading metal processing company Metal Technology Co. Ltd on its acquisition of Sandvik Powder Solutions AB

08 April 2020

RPC have advised Metal Technology Co. Ltd., a leading metal processing company headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, on the acquisition of Swedish based Sandvik Powder Solutions AB.

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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

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

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

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

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

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

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.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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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