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Facing a Bank's Formal Demand for Payment? You Are Not Powerless

When faced with a bank's formal demand for payment, individual debtors can feel that there is little they can do but comply. However, as a High Court ruling showed , with the right legal advice they are very far from powerless. A bank served a man with a...

Ambiguous Wills - Court of Appeal Gives Effect to Deceased's Intentions

Where words used in a will are ambiguous, judges will strive to interpret them in a way that gives effect to the deceased's intentions. An instructive Court of Appeal decision on point hinged on the little-known fact that the Channel Islands are not...

Can the COVID-19 Crisis Justify Reopening Financial Orders in Divorce?

Can the economic havoc wreaked by the COVID-19 pandemic justify the re-drawing of final financial orders made following a divorce? The High Court has ruled in a guideline case that the answer to that question is 'probably not'. The case concerned a couple...

Determined DIY Builders Score Important Victory Over HMRC

You may understandably feel overawed by the might of the tax authorities but, with the law on your side, the balance of power is far more even than you might think. In a case on point, a couple struck an important blow for the cohort of determined people who...

High Court Aids Widow Left in Precarious Position by Husband's Death

If someone on whom you depended for support has died without making reasonable financial provision for you, you should consult a solicitor without delay. In a case on point, the High Court came to the aid of a widow who was left largely reliant on benefits...

Parking Obstruction of Rights of Way - The Legal Principles Explained

The parking of cars along shared access routes is all too often a source of acrimony between neighbours. A High Court ruling provided a clear explanation of the legal principles commonly applied when resolving such disputes. The case concerned a lane that...

High Court Clamps Down on Standardised Online Divorce Petitions

The advent of so-called 'no fault' divorce is on the horizon but, until then, a great many divorce petitions will continue to be issued on the basis of unreasonable behaviour by one party or the other. As a High Court ruling underlined , the requirement to...

Cowboy Builders Can Expect Stern Punishment - Court of Appeal Ruling

Cowboy builders who rip off householders are a well-known blight on society. As a Court of Appeal ruling showed , however, judges are well abreast of their activities and culprits can expect severe punishment, up to and including imprisonment. The case...

Deduction of Accommodation Costs from Income Tax - Guideline Ruling

You are only able to deduct accommodation and other expenses from your Income Tax liabilities if they have been wholly, exclusively and necessarily incurred in the performance of the duties of your employment. That is a very high hurdle but, as a tax...

Inheritance and the Impact of Intestacy on Stepchildren

In an era of increasingly fluid family relationships, many children are brought up by step-parents – but what is the consequence of that social change in terms of inheritance? The High Court addressed that issue in a guideline ruling . The case...

Are You a Pandemic Home Worker? Do You Need Planning Permission?

Vast numbers of people have been prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic to take up working or running businesses from home – but do they need planning permission for a change of use? The High Court addressed that burning issue in the case of a personal...

Read This If Your Child Has Been Taken Abroad Without Your Consent

If your right to play a full part in your child's life has been undermined by his or her wrongful removal from England, a specialist family lawyer can help you achieve a reunion. A case on point concerned a baby girl who, without her father's consent, was...

Inheritance Tax Property Valuations - Don't Dispense With Professional Advice

Residential property often represents the majority of a person's wealth and valuing it for Inheritance Tax (IHT) purposes is, par excellence, a matter for professionals. In a case on point, a son who dispensed with expert tax and valuation advice following...

Father Who Disinherited Daughter Lacked Capacity to Make a Valid Will

You are perfectly entitled to write your children or other close family members out of your will, but such a course can be an invitation to dispute after you are gone. That was certainly so in a High Court case concerning a man who left everything he owned...

Lending Money to Friends? Don't Act Without Professional Advice

The emotional element involved in lending money to friends and loved ones makes it all the more necessary to first seek independent professional advice. A case on point concerned a businessman who lent a small fortune to a close friend but had to launch...

Property Dispute Looming? Now is the Moment to Seek Professional Advice

A word out of place can lead to the sacrifice of valuable legal rights and that is why it is vital to seek professional advice the moment a potential dispute looms on the horizon. The point was made by the case of a couple who faced a challenge to their...

Divorced Abroad? You Can Still Get a Fair Financial Deal in England

It may come as a surprise but, even if you have been divorced abroad, there is a great deal that an English family lawyer can do to ensure you receive a fair financial deal. In one case, the High Court came to the aid of a woman whose marriage to an...

What Does 'Survivor' Mean? High Court Resolves Inheritance Doubts

Words are not numbers and even the most careful draftsperson cannot guarantee that the meaning of a will is always clear beyond doubt. As a High Court case showed , however, judges are adept at resolving ambiguities so that the true intentions of testators...

Building Your Own Home? You Need Professional Tax Advice

So-called DIY builders who 'construct' their own homes can reclaim VAT incurred in doing so. As one case showed, however, there is a very great difference between the ordinary English usage of that word and its meaning in VAT legislation. The case concerned...

International Child Abduction - Children's Welfare is Always Paramount

Where one parent moves abroad with his or her children, leaving the other behind, the result can be an international tug of war. As a High Court ruling showed , when called upon to play the part of referee in such contests, the paramount focus of family...
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