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Friday, 30 November 2012

Personal Injury Claims – Pre-Action Protocols

Any party who has been involved in litigation of any sort will know that it can be an expensive and time-consuming business. The introduction of the Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) aimed to reduce systematic inefficiencies in order to increase access to justice.

As the CPR have developed, certain areas of law that attract high volumes of claims have been reviewed in detail and procedures designed to help improve the way claims are managed from the outset. Litigants should aim to follow these additional guidelines which are known as pre-action protocols.

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Should Cycling Helmets be Compulsory?

Cycling in the UK is a hot topic following recent British cycling success stories. After the British team won a host of medals in Beijing four years ago, team Sky kept up the pace on the road, Bradley Wiggins won the Tour de France and the British Olympic team romped home with another stash of medals at the 2012 Olympics.
Away from the professional scene, London has seen the introduction of the ‘Boris bike’ and cycling is currently enjoying increased popularity throughout the country for leisure and commuting. There are plenty of positives - higher levels of exercise and reduced traffic pollution being the most obvious.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Can More be Done to Protect Cyclists?

Cycling is having a minor renaissance in the UK thanks to environmental awareness, changing attitudes towards health and ever increasing fuel prices. The number of people commuting and using bicycles for city transport has shown an upward trend in recent years with the introduction of London’s ‘Boris bikes’ being the most visible incarnation of this phenomenon. The overwhelming success of British cycling professionals in events such as the Tour de France and the Olympics has also given the sport a huge boost.

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

London’s Cycling Dangers

Sadly the number of cycling deaths on the roads of London reached double figures in August. The latest death took place during the Olympics at the height of Olympic cycle fever.

Britain’s recent sporting success in track and road racing have been inspirational for all types of cyclists but there are fears that the safety of cyclists is not being adequately prioritised in the nation’s capital. The death toll has so far reached ten in London in 2012 and campaigners are determined to limit further tragedies from happening.

Monday, 26 November 2012

Cycling Accidents – The Facts In Perspective

Cycling has received tremendous publicity in recent years. Olympic success in Beijing and London, the introduction of ‘Boris bikes’ and Bradley Wiggins win in the Tour de France have all served to encourage the leisurely and the sporting to get on their bikes.
However, the news has not always been positive. Bunches of flowers tied to junction railings and media stories about those killed or injured are frequent reminders of the vulnerability of cyclists using Britain’s roads to commute to work or keep fit.

Friday, 23 November 2012

Cycling Accident Personal Injury Claims

There is increasing recognition of the benefits that cycling can bring for health, enjoyment and convenience. With today’s high levels of congestion, rocketing fuel prices and greater awareness of health issues many people are getting on their bikes for work and leisure.

However, cyclists are particularly vulnerable as a class of road users and are frequently injured in road traffic accidents. Injuries can range from minor cuts and bruises to multiple injuries and serious head trauma.

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Injury Solicitors Urge Safety First for Cyclists

At Rollingsons our personal injury solicitors are used to dealing with many forms of harm caused to people involved in road accidents. Each case reveals different forms of pain, suffering and loss and our aim is always to help clients reduce the negative effects of victims’ experience as much as possible.

Although many of our clients are involved in accidents through no fault of their own there is always scope for trying to improve measures to prevent injury in the first place. This is particularly relevant to cyclists who are among the most vulnerable groups of road users.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Cycling and the Law

When it comes to cycling there seems to be much confusion about what is legal and what is illegal. Whether it relates to the use of helmets, pedalling back from the pub or ignoring traffic lights; different riders appear to behave in different ways.

Generally the rules of the road are aimed at creating an environment that is as safe as possible for different types of road users while enabling the easy and efficient passage of those users to their destination. While drivers of cars, motorcycles and HGVs are required to pass a test before venturing out onto Britain’s highways, there is no such test for cyclists.

Coronial Inquests

A coroner is a doctor or lawyer who is responsible for investigating deaths that occur in certain circumstances. He must be qualified in either the legal or medical field and has authority to determine who has died and how, when and where they died. The coroner can arrange for a post-mortem to be carried out in order for a body to be examined and the cause of death determined.
If a coroner carries out a legal investigation into the circumstances and causes of death this is known as an inquest.

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Wheel Clamping on Private Land Banned

One ray of sunshine has finally burst through the clouds for motorists as wheel clamping on private land is banned. Rising fuel prices, worsening congestion and tax increases are just some of the miseries that motorists have faced while the economy has squeezed their household budgets. The fear of returning from a shopping trip to find you car wheel clamped and patrolled by a surly attendant should now be a thing of the past with the introduction of new laws at the beginning of October.

Monday, 19 November 2012

Beware of Negotiation by Email

There can be few circumstances in today’s world where contractual negotiations are not carried out in some part by email. The ease and efficiency with which details can be hammered out and sent back and forth at the click of a mouse make email a common sense tool at all levels of negotiation.
However, care must be taken to ensure that a contract is not accidentally entered into before both parties are sure that they have reached a final agreement. It is surprising how easily this can happen in practice.

Friday, 16 November 2012

The Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme

The Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) was set up specifically to benefit small start-up companies and their investors. Although similar to the original EIS, it is directly focused on start-ups rather than small companies generally. Tight lending conditions by banks and a reluctance to invest in small, high-risk ventures by other providers of funding led the Chancellor to set up a scheme to directly target equity financing at the start-up sector of the economy. 

How to Qualify as an Enterprise Investment Scheme

Enterprise Investment Schemes can be a great way for small businesses to raise finance if mainstream channels fail to deliver. However, the tax incentives that make them attractive for investors will only apply if the relevant criteria are met. 

If you think your company qualifies for an EIS then it is advisable follow the advanced assurance procedure set out by the Small Company Enterprise Centre which administers EIS. This will give your company the best chance of starting on the right foot with EIS investors and reduce the risk of them losing their tax advantages. 

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Enterprise Investment Schemes - Individual Considerations

The Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) was introduced in 1994 to encourage investment in entrepreneurial business ventures. The aim was to foster economic growth and innovation by supporting new businesses using tax reliefs to attract investment. On 6 April 2012 a number of changes to EIS were introduced by the Finance Act 2012 in respect of the both the incentives and the qualifying criteria. 

Enterprise Investment Schemes – Company Considerations

Enterprise Investment Schemes (EIS) were introduced in 1994 to encourage investment in small businesses. The aim was to foster economic growth and innovation by supporting entrepreneurial business ventures. Tax reliefs were applied to compensate for some of the risks and attract investment. On 6 April 2012 a number of changes to EIS were introduced in respect of the qualifying criteria. 

An Introduction to the Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS)

The Enterprise Investment Scheme was introduced in 1994 to encourage investment in entrepreneurial business ventures. The aim was to encourage growth and innovation in an important part of the economy by incentivising investment in new businesses using tax reliefs. On 6 April 2012 a number of changes to EIS were introduced by the Finance Act 2012. 

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Intellectual Property – Selling Second Hand Software

A recent case in the European Court of Justice has made it easier for buyers of software to sell it second hand much like they might sell on other assets. It is perhaps not something that many buyers of software have considered in the way they might consider selling on more tangible products such as their used car for example. However, there are numerous businesses that have been set up specifically to service the market in second-hand downloadable software. 

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Employee Owner Contracts Consultation Launched

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, announced proposals for a new kind of employment contract at the beginning of October. The so called ‘employee-owner’ contracts will seek to give shares to employees in exchange for them giving up some of their employment rights.

Friday, 9 November 2012

No Piercing the Corporate Veil for Matrimonial Settlements

The recent high profile divorce case of Petrodel v Prest [2012] has put a limit on the means with which courts can apply the fairness principle. The Court of Appeal ruled that the High Court cannot simply dismiss the established principles of company law in family law cases.

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Fixed Rate War Hots Up As Bank Rate Remains Becalmed

  • Popularity of Fixed Rate Mortgages Increased Further in October
  • Recent Hints From MPC Members Foreshadowed a No Change Month

Ray Boulger of leading independent mortgage adviser John Charcol comments on today’s as expected no change announcement from the MPC.

“The proportion of John Charcol clients choosing a fixed rate increased further in October to 69%, with 5% choosing a 3 year fix and the other 64% split almost equally between 2 and 5 year fixes. The steady steam of rate cuts gathered pace over the month, mostly on fixed rate mortgages. In the last week only one major lender, Woolwich, has moved rates in the opposite direction, as well as reducing its product range; this was no doubt to reduce demand in order to address service issues.

Casual Sperm Donors at Risk of Child Support Obligations

A recent media story has highlighted the dangers for sperm donors who enter into casual arrangements with recipients. The law is clear for anyone wishing to donate sperm; only anonymous donors at licensed clinics are treated as exempt from being viewed as the legal father of children born from their sperm donation. Unless a child is legally adopted or the consenting couple are in a civil partnership, both biological parents remain financially responsible for that child.

Co-habiting Couples Double Since 1996

The number of couples who live with their partner but are unmarried has doubled since 1996 according to the latest statistics from the ONS Labour Force Survey. The total increase in co-habiting couple families includes both opposite sex couples and same sex couples who are not in a marriage or a civil partnership. That means the co-habiting couple is the fastest growing family type in the UK.

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Hague Convention on Protection of Children Now in Force

The 1996 Hague Convention on Protection of Children has existed for a considerable time but finally came into force in the UK on 1 November 2012. The full title gives a flavour of the intended purpose of the Convention - The Hague Convention on Jurisdiction, Applicable Law, Recognition, Enforcement and Co-operation in respect of Parental Responsibility and Measures for the Protection of Children. Although it has been in force elsewhere since 1 January 2002, it has only been ratified by the UK in 2012.

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Cycling Deaths Reach 11 in London this Year

Another cycling fatality on London’s roads brings the death toll to 11 so far this year. The number of cycling deaths on the Capital’s roads broke through double figures in August. The circumstances of an accident earlier this year gained widespread attention, having taken place at the height of Olympic bicycle fever, right outside the Olympic park.

Cycling Guide – Protect Yourself Before You Ride

Our personal injury solicitors have helped many people deal with the after-effects of cycling accidents. Although we are always happy to help those involved, we would much prefer to see fewer accidents occur in the first place and the terrible consequences reduced.