Limited Liability: Nothing to Fear?


Gavin Hoccom, Senior Associate at Berry Smith, considers the implications for directors and shareholders following a recent decision of the High Court in relation to the use of a limited company to avoid payment to a building contractor for construction works.

According to the most recent government statistics, there were 5.7 million small and medium sized enterprises in the UK in 2017, accounting for 99% of all businesses. Of that, 1.88 million carried on business through a limited company.

What are the Benefits of Trademark Registration?

Although trademark registration is not compulsory in the UK, it is certainly advisable. Securing a registered trademark protects your brand and provides you with the tools and mechanisms to prevent someone using similar signs and making money off the back of your business.

As part of our recent campaign encouraging businesses to register trademarks, we have set out below the benefits of a registered trademark and the potential pitfalls of relying on an unregistered trademark.

The Importance of Partnership Agreements

Paul Evans, Associate at Berry Smith, discusses the importance of partnerships having in place a well drafted, up to date partnership agreement.

Many traditional businesses still operate as a partnership instead of incorporating as a limited company.

The partnership model offers a lot of advantages to those who choose to run their business this way. However, some partnerships continue to operate without any written agreement in place or with an antiquated agreement which no longer reflects the commercial reality of the partnership.

ECJ Decision: Working Time Directive Does Not Require Accrual of Annual Leave During Parental Leave


In Tribunalul Botoşani v Dicu (Case C-12/17), the ECJ has held that a Romanian law which ‘suspends’ the employment contract during parental leave and prevents the accrual of annual leave during this time is permissible, and does not infringe the Working Time Directive.

Ms Dicu was a Judge at the Royal Court of Botosani. After having a baby, she took 4 months’ maternity leave followed by 6 months’ parental leave and 30 days’ annual leave.

Dividing Assets

Q - I left my ex-partner two years ago, and after about a year, our house, which was in joint names, was repossessed. Following the recent sale, and repayment of the mortgage and a secured loan, there is a balance of £25,000 left. We have a 10-year-old daughter and my ex-partner pays no maintenance. Could I claim more than half the money, and do we have to sign for it together, since he has a history of violent behaviour?

Being Civil

Q. My partner and I have lived together for 5 years and would like to ‘take our relationship to the next level’. However, neither of us are particularly religious and we are considering, rather than marriage, entering into a Civil Partnership. We aren’t the same sex, however; is this an issue?