Professional negligence team rectifies defective title

Our professional negligence team have successfully represented co-owners in a claim for professional negligence against their former solicitors who acted for them in the acquisition of their family home.

The property consisted of a detached house with a large plot of land to the rear (including an Olympic sized manége).   Several years after the purchase they discovered that they had not been registered as the owner of the plot of land to the rear as it had not been included in the contract for sale, even though then Seller had agreed that it should have been sold.

Man must pay £44,000 in family dispute over stepfather’s will

Probate and Wills

A man has been told he’s liable to pay costs of £44,000 because of his unreasonable behaviour in a family dispute over his stepfather’s will.

The case involved the stepson and the stepfather’s daughter and son. The stepson had looked after the father’s finances in the last 12 months of his life.

Following the father’s death, the daughter was concerned to discover that the estate was far less valuable than she had anticipated. She issued proceedings to determine who should represent the estate and to seek an account of the money that she suspected was missing.

Husband ordered to pay wife an extra £1.6m in divorce settlement


A husband who failed to disclose all his assets when negotiating a divorce settlement has been ordered to pay his wife an extra £1.6m.

The couple were both teachers when they got married in 1984. The husband began a business in 1988. He owned 99 of the 100 shares and his wife had the other one.

He stopped teaching in 1990 to concentrate on the company, while the wife continued teaching and helped in the business. The couple had three children by the time they separated in 2002. The husband moved out of the family home and she took no further part in the business.

Keeping up appearances …. pitfalls for employers

Employment - Performance

Following a petition signed by more than 150,000 people calling for the law to be changed to make it illegal for a company to require its female staff to wear high heels at work, an inquiry by the Petitions Committee and Women and Equalities Committee was recently undertaken and the report was published last week. The findings make interesting reading on the issue of discriminatory dress codes and extend way beyond the subject of high heels.

Capability-v- redundancy. Need it be a performance issue?

Employment - Performance

We often get instructed when employers reach the end of their tether with a poor performer.  When we advise what a performance process involves, we are often met with resistance because there’s neither the time nor inclination by that stage.  This invariably leads to discussions over redundancy as an alternative option. 

Performance process

Solicitors Negligence and Repayment of Mortgages

AIB Bank made a claim against a firm of solicitors for failing to protect its interests when the bank lent purchase monies to the purchaser of a property.  The solicitors acted for both the purchaser and the bank.

The purchasers had a pre-existing mortgage with Barclays Bank and it was a condition of AIB’s loan that they would have a first charge over the property.  The solicitors were, therefore, required to ensure that the Barclay’s mortgage was repaid in full prior to AIB’s money being lent to the purchaser.

How the law can help when loved ones lose mental capacity

Probate and Wills

Medical advances and better health education mean people are enjoying longer and more active lives than ever before.

There are still risks, however. With more people living into their eighties and nineties, there are a rising number of dementia cases. According to the Alzheimer’s Society, more than a million people in the UK will be affected by 2025.

In many cases the heartache and stress for relatives can be exacerbated by the fact that the sufferer may lose the capacity to make decisions about their health care and their financial and business affairs.

New plans to streamline the buying and selling of homes

New proposals have been put forward to streamline and speed up the process of buying and selling a home.

The new ideas are contained in a discussion document called Modernising the Home Moving Process, which has been drawn up by the Conveyancing Association.

The White Paper focuses particularly on the benefits to be gained from creating greater certainty far earlier in the home moving process. It suggests a number of ways in which this can be achieved including:

Rights for cohabiting couples is long overdue say lawyers


Leading family lawyers are calling on the government to provide new legislation to protect the rights of cohabiting couples.

The latest figures from the Office of National Statistics show that there were 3.3 million cohabiting couple families in the UK in 2016, more than double the number recorded in 1996. They are now the fastest growing family type.

Cyber-attacks on business

Hardly a week goes by without yet another story of a business being subject to cyber-attack in the news.

While the most newsworthy are invariably the larger attacks on well-known names such as Talk Talk or Yahoo, the sad fact is that cyber-attacks are prevalent on businesses of all sizes, and often Small and Medium Enterprises (SME’s) are common targets. Various surveys undertaken in the last two years consistently show that somewhere between 55% and 65% of all UK businesses have been affected by a cyber-attack.