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Dispute Resolution

Clitheroe v Bond: Birkett Long success in High Court will dispute

Rachel Leech
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In the recent contentious probate case of Clitheroe v Bond, the court overturned the validity of two wills. The Defendant, who was represented by Birkett Long, was successful in the will dispute on the ground that the Deceased lacked mental capacity to make...

COVID-19: insolvency and winding up petition changes

Kevin Sullivan
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The impact COVID-19 is having on businesses and individuals is enormous and unprecedented. In response, governments across the globe are adapting to mitigate the economic disruption and to enable struggling businesses to weather the storm. On 28 March 2020,...

Coronavirus: what do landlords need to know?

Perdeep Grewal
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Parliament has now enacted the Coronavirus Act 2020. There are temporary changes affecting landlords and tenants: Landlords cannot waive the right to forfeit for non-payment of rent; Landlords must give 3 months’ notice to terminate all residential...

Is coronavirus a force majeure event?

Tracy England
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The UK government has recently announced guidance to contain the spread of coronavirus, advising that people should avoid pubs, clubs and theatres and stop all non-essential travel.  With the impending disruption posed to businesses, from cancellation...

Covid19 and the rental market

David Feakins
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Emergency legislation is being implemented which will stop landlords from issuing proceedings to evict tenants. The Government announced radical measures yesterday. These measures ensure that no renter, in either social or private accommodation, will be...

Can your email footer amount to a signature?

Perdeep Grewal
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The world’s oldest known signature, from Sumeria (in modern-day Iraq), was added to the back of a clay tablet in circa 3100 BC. Fast forward to the 21st century, electronic signatures are now used as a popular and quick way to execute documents. Do...

Compensation Orders against banned directors

Lisa Cox
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In the first case of its kind, a director of a limited company has been ordered to pay compensation of over £500,000 to creditors of that company who suffered loss due to his conduct. Such conduct has already resulted in a disqualification order being...

Common misconceptions about solicitors and how they work

David Feakins
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A lot of people may feel concerned about the prospect of having to speak to a solicitor. It may be that you want to discuss a family issue, a dispute you are having with a neighbour or wanting to prepare a will. Solicitors are here to provide the support...

Rooney vs Vardy... off the pitch!

David Feakins
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Disputes caused by social media are on the rise. Coleen Rooney and Rebekah Vardy, the respective wives of footballers Wayne and Jamie, have very publicly fallen out. Coleen has made allegations that Rebekah sold stories to the tabloids taken from...

The danger of informal land agreements

Emma Jenkins
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In Pezaro v Borne*, Master Treverson in the Court of Appeal has found that a right of way was not extinguished, on the grounds of proprietary estoppel, when a previous owner of the dominant land orally agreed to its removal. The right of way was still...

Gentlemen's agreements: forming a contract with a handshake

Perdeep Grewal
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As a solicitor specialising in dispute resolution and construction law, I have come across various businesses who have relied on so-called “gentlemen’s agreements”. These are based on nothing more than a handshake. In the absence of any...

Libel and social media - Guidance from the Supreme Court

Laura Meers
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In a recent defamation case (Stocker v Stocker [2019] UKSC 17) the Supreme Court ruled that the trial judge had made an error. The judge used dictionary definitions as the starting point for his analysis of the meaning of words on a Facebook post. He failed...

Esports: professional Fortnite gamer sues Faze Clan

David Feakins
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Professional esports gamer, Tfue, is suing his esports team, Faze Clan. Tfue is one of the most popular professionals on the game Fortnite. He is taking legal action against esports team, Faze Clan, as he alleges they are limiting his opportunities as a...

Recent Habberfield proprietary estoppel claim

Tracy England
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The Court of Appeal has recently upheld a High Court decision to award £1.2 million of lifetime compensation in proprietary estoppel claim. The doctrine of estoppel essentially exists to protect a party who has been induced to act in a certain way...

Ending commercial tenancies - the most common pitfall

Emma Jenkins
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We regularly deal with matters involving forfeiture, or ending, of commercial leases. This is either in the context of landlords wishing to end leases, or tenants wishing to gain relief from the landlord ending their lease. This blog looks at this issue...

Man murdered by his brother due to inheritance dispute

Amanda Smallcombe
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When you are disputing a loved one’s inheritance, emotions will often run high. However, it is rare that someone will take such drastic steps as to murder a sibling. Last week, Richard Martin was convicted of his brother’s murder and was...

Possession claims; an uncertain time for landlords

Emma Jenkins
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Recent years have seen an array of challenges in the legal world for those renting properties in the private sector. Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 provides a “no fault” mechanism for landlords to recover possession of rented premises. After...

Alternative Dispute Resolution - I'll see you in mediation!

Perdeep Grewal
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While Brexit continues to make the headlines, there have been major developments in the field of alternative dispute resolution, also known as ADR. The Civil Justice Council published its ADR and Civil Justice Final Report which outlined the ways ADR is...

Emiliano Sala transfer - Will a transfer fee be payable?

David Feakins
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It has been reported that Premier League club, Cardiff City, are refusing to pay French Ligue 1 club, Nantes, an agreed £15 million transfer fee for striker Emiliano Sala. Sala sadly died, along with pilot David Ibbotson, when the aircraft they were...

Sodje brothers jailed for taking charity money

David Feakins
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It was recently revealed that a sporting family embezzled cash from their own charity, the Sodje Sports Foundation, which had been set up in 2009 to provide sporting facilities in Nigeria. Ex-rugby player Bright Sodje and ex-footballers Stephen Sodje and...

Game, Set and....Fix?

David Feakins
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As Andy Murray waved goodbye to tennis fans at the Australian Open, a much more sinister story emerged from the world of tennis. Months of investigations have led to the arrest of Grigor Sargsyan, an individual who is the suspected ringleader of an...

The repercussions of a family Christmas

Amanda Smallcombe
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Clive Shaw took his parents to court after a falling out at Christmas in 2016. As a result of this falling out, Clive was removed from his parents’ will and was no longer to inherit the farm owned by his parents. Clive argued that he had relied upon...

Oil be the judge of that!

Perdeep Grewal
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Can directors be held personally liable for representations they make on behalf of a company?   In the case of Inter Export LLC v Jonathan Townley and Yaroslavna Lasytsya [2018] EWCA, the Court of Appeal upheld an earlier decision for damages against...

A right to refer a dispute to adjudication at any time?

Perdeep Grewal
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A right to refer a dispute to adjudication at any time? Not if you are in liquidation... The Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 (Construction Act 1996) gives a party to a construction contract the right to refer a dispute to...

A case of no interest on a loan

Perdeep Grewal
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  You decide to loan money to someone under an oral agreement, but you did not consider whether they should pay you added interest. Should interest be implied? Should you be entitled to interest? This was a significant issue discussed in the case...

More deregulation regulations coming!

Emma Jenkins
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For those familiar with residential tenancy disputes, you will no doubt be aware of the extensive rules in place to protect tenants, especially at the conclusion of their occupation. The legislation which introduced this enhanced protection is the...

It pays to seek legal advice

David Feakins
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For all of the soap lovers out there, you may have recently watched a storyline that appeared on Hollyoaks. Science teacher, Courtney Campbell, had accepted a loan from the villainous Glenn Donovan, in a bid to secretly assist with the financial problems of...

Bankruptcy and the Family Courts

Philip Hoddell
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In an anonymised judgement the High Court has upheld the terms of an original agreement between husband and wife in divorce, even when the husband’s intervening bankruptcy has had a significant effect on the outcome of the case. The original divorce...

HMRC iTunes Gift Card Scam

Jess Birch
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HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) and Apple have warned of a recent scam targeting older and vulnerable people.  How does the scam work?  Victims are cold-called by the fraudsters who pose as staff from HMRC. They tell them that they owe large...

How to enforce that judgment

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The courts have a power that is not often used, but can be very effective for creditors. It is the power to require a debtor to attend court for questioning under oath. Under Part 71 of the Civil Procedure Rules, a judgment debtor or, if the claim is...

Recovering debts successfully - who needs a court action?

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The recovery of an unpaid debt owed to you does not always require court action. If you have a clear claim to an unpaid debt from a limited company for at least £750, then payment can often be obtained through the statutory demand procedure. The same...

Is that debt really unenforceable?

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You have a debt claim against Mr Smith and the balance owing is £10,000.  He refuses to pay.  You know that Mr Smith has no assets but he is in employment.  What can you do?  Serving court papers Firstly you need a judgment...

Should you make or defend a claim against an estate?

Lisa Cox
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This morning the head of our private client department at Birkett Long, Claire Read, spoke on BBC Essex radio about inheritance issues that can arise due to second marriages. Claire was joined on the show by Mr Herd, who recently lost his...

Dementia - Important to plan for the future

Rachel Leech
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Last Saturday almost 10,000 people attended Loftus Road for the Queens Park Rangers' friendly with Bournemouth to raise money and show support for QPR legend Stan Bowles and his battle with Alzheimer's disease. Stan Bowles, 68, was diagnosed with...

Singhsbury's vs Sainsbury's - the battle of the burys

Thomas Emmett
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It seems that a day doesn’t go by without another report relating to the subject appearing in the news and this week is no different, with major newspapers and other media outlets reporting that a large superstore threatened legal action against a...

Received a drone for Christmas? Be sure not to fly into trouble!

Rachel Leech
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Drones are becoming increasing popular and no doubt were a big hit this Christmas.  But, when thousands of people ripped the wrapping paper off their new drone, very few would have thought of the legal implications of their flights which could...

Banned director earns extended disqualification

Kevin Sullivan
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The case highlights the importance of adhering strictly to a disqualification order or undertaking.  We here at Birkett Long LLP specialise in acting for individuals in such circumstances to ensure they do not fall foul of their ban.  We also...

2016 Legal 500 results are out!

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"A standout name in Essex" quoted by Legal 500 2016 for Birkett Long! This year has been a great success for Birkett Long, 3 of our partners have again been ranked as "Leading Individuals". These are Claire Read, Head of Wills, Trusts...

Jose Mourinho - The Special One!

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Negotiations are continuing between Chelsea and Manchester United to appoint Jose Mourinho as their manager, which include a dispute over the trademark in his name.   In 2005 Chelsea registered both the name ‘Jose Mourinho’ and his...

The costs of 'Plebgate'

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‘Plebgate’ MP has libel budget limited to court fees.  The high-profile case involving Andrew Mitchell MP has recently made headlines again. The High Court has ruled that Mitchell’s libel budget will be capped to court fees due to...