The EU Referendum and its impact on businesses

Businesses face a period of dealing with uncertainty as a consequence of the result of the EU Referendum. We can assist in advising on likely legal implications as a consequence of the decision, and implementation of changes that arise over time.

At this stage we set out an overview of the main issues at present.

UK exit process and procedure

Charities to invest an extra £100m in research into dementia

The Alzheimer’s Society and Alzheimer’s Research UK are each donating £50m to the new Dementia Research Institute (DRI).

The investment is in addition to the £150m already pledged by the government.  The DRI is expected to be up and running by 2020. It will have a central UK hub with a network of regional centres and involve hundreds of scientists.

The research carried out will help drive new approaches to diagnosis, treatment, care provision and ultimately the prevention of dementia.

Court resolves dispute between former partners over sale of flats

The High Court has resolved a dispute between former partners over the sale of a block of flats worth between £3m and £4m.

The case involved three partners whose relationship broke down in 2014. The partnership’s main asset was a large apartment block comprising of just over 100 leasehold flats.

An independent valuation indicated a market value of £3.255 million. However, the price could be less than £3m on a forced sale and over £4m if the units were sold separately or in tranches over a period of 52 months.

An offer had been received of £3.5m.

Shared ownership changes could help 175,000 on to housing ladder

Changes to the shared ownership rules could help an extra 175,000 people on to the housing ladder, according to the government.

Shared ownership allows people to ease their way into the property market by purchasing a share in their home rather than having to pay the full amount. They only have to a find a deposit of 5% of the price of the share they are buying.

They then pay rent on the part they don’t own but can increase their stake over the years if they so wish.

The risks of communicating with an employee on sick leave

A recent case before the Employment Tribunal highlights the potential risks of communicating with an employee on sick leave and how even well intentioned inquiries can backfire.

The case involved a woman who was disabled and had frequently taken long spells off work because of health issues.

In 2013, she suffered bouts of depression and anxiety after claiming that two senior colleagues had bullied her. This resulted in her taking a lengthy period of sick leave.

Homemaker wife awarded shares worth £69m in divorce settlement

A woman who devoted her life to her family while her husband concentrated on developing his business has been awarded £69m in a divorce settlement.

The case involved a couple who began living together in 2002. They married in 2004 and the wife became a homemaker and a full-time mother to their two children. 

At the time they met, the husband was the chief executive of an online fashion retailer and owned company shares worth £1.2m. The wife had no significant wealth.

Director disqualified for transferring company assets to himself

A director has been disqualified for five years for transferring money from his insolvent company to himself and his associates.

James Elliott Pemble ran a marquee hire business called All Marquees Ltd at Tonbridge in Kent. He also had at least three other companies in the leisure and entertainment industry.

Battle over estate of pop star Prince because he hadn’t made a will

The family of the pop star Prince fear there could be a costly dispute over his multi-million pound fortune because he died without having made a will.

Prince’s sister, Tyka Nelson, has asked a court in the United States to appoint a special administrator to manage his estate because he left no will or instructions as to who should inherit his wealth.

Legal proceedings will now be necessary to decide how his estate should be divided between his relatives. It’s feared this could prove both costly and stressful for the family members involved.

Tenant wins dispute with landlords over exercising break clause

A commercial tenant has won a dispute over exercising a break clause even though it served notice to an out-of-date address.

The case involved four landlords who were the trustees of a retirement scheme that owned the freehold of a large building. Three floors in the building were let to a commercial tenant on a 10-year lease from July 2010. After three years, the tenant exercised a break clause by serving notices by recorded delivery on each of the individual landlords at the business address given for them in the lease.

Court upholds woman’s will against challenge by grandchildren

An elderly woman knew what she doing when she drew up a new will, even though she was suffering from some mental impairment at the time.

That was the decision of the Court of Appeal in a case involving a family dispute between the woman’s grandchildren and their uncle.

The court heard that in 2003, the woman had made a will leaving the majority of her estate to her elder son and the rest to her younger son. In 2005, she made a new will leaving them both equal shares.

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