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Teacher Assaulted by Pupil Unfairly Sacked After Long-Term Sick Leave

Long-term sick leave can be a headache for employers, but it is absolutely vital that workers are given every opportunity to get better and return to work. In one case that proved the point, a teacher who was off work for over a year after she was assaulted by a pupil has won the right to compensation following her dismissal. Although her physical injuries were...

Family Companies – It’s Never Too Soon to Start Estate Planning!

When it comes to family companies, the death of a shareholder can give rise to very serious tax consequences and, as one High Court case vividly revealed, it is never too early to seek expert advice in respect of estate planning. After learning that a company’s founder and majority shareholder was terminally ill with cancer, its directors were concerned that...

Commercial Confidentiality Agreement under High Court Scrutiny

Commercially sensitive information inevitably often passes between contracting parties and, in such cases, confidentially agreements are commonplace. One such agreement was considered by the High Court in the context of a defence supply contract. Company A had contracted with company B to supply communications technology to an overseas air force. The...

Flats Development Founders on Planning Condition Rock

Conditions attached to planning permissions can be highly restrictive and can even prevent changes of use that would otherwise be automatically permitted. The Court of Appeal made that point in scotching a developer’s hopes of converting an office block into 127 studio flats. The block dated from the 1980s and, after over 30 percent of its offices fell vacant,...

Having Building Work Done? Be Smart and Put the Contract in Writing!

There is still a tendency towards informality in domestic building contracts, although the potentially dire consequences of not having a written agreement should be common knowledge. In one case, a couple and their builder became mired in costly litigation that could have been avoided had a lawyer been consulted at the outset. The couple paid £375,000 for a...

International Corruption – High Court Backs Serious Fraud Office

The international fight against corruption in the commercial sphere requires mutual cooperation between friendly states, but a balance often has to be struck between the public benefit in the detection of crime and the individual rights of suspects. The High Court addressed that issue in an important decision that represented a significant victory for the...