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Tree Root Subsidence Couple in Landmark £25,000 Compensation Win

In a ground-breaking decision of interest to property professionals and homeowners, a couple whose conservatory was catastrophically undermined by the roots of a protected oak tree have won £25,000 in compensation from their local council. The tree, which was protected by a tree preservation order (TPO), reached a height of up to 11 metres and stood just...

Fairness Comes First in Resolution of Contract Disputes

Where the rights and wrongs of a contract dispute are in no real doubt, the courts can swiftly deliver justice – however, where matters are less clear, fairness will usually demand a full trial. One case that illustrated the point involved a training company that was stripped of its right to award certain qualifications. Under a written contract, the company...

Tribunal Decision Reinforces Agency Workers’ Rights

In a guideline decision which reinforced the rights of agency workers, a tribunal has underlined in the context of an NHS whistleblowing case that it is legally possible to have one job but more than one employer. A forensic nurse was employed by an agency to work at an NHS centre where sexual assault victims were medically examined. She launched Employment...

The Corporate Veil Will Not Protect Those Who Wilfully Default on PAYE

Company directors are under a personal duty to ensure that National Insurance (NI) and Income Tax (IT) liabilities are met and the corporate veil will not protect them in the event of wilful default. In one case, two businessmen were hit hard in the pocket after they continued to pay themselves generous salaries whilst their company struggled and its IT and NI...

Long Lease on Your Home? Do You Understand Your Obligations?

Those who hold long leases over their homes often think that their position is almost exactly the same as a freeholder. However, one case in which a tenant with a 999-year lease was accused of making unauthorised alterations to his property showed how very wrong that assumption can be. The lease of the large detached house was subject to restrictive covenants...