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02nd February 2016
With the current retirement age set to rise especially for many women, now is the time to organise your affairs to ensure, firstly, that you have enough income to meet your needs once you are retired and, secondly, that your legal affairs are in order. Income in Retirement If you have a pension plan you should pay into it as much as you can afford…
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02nd February 2016
It has always been a fundamental principle of English law that for an individual to be convicted of a criminal offence, the offence against them must be proved ‘beyond reasonable doubt’. This is called the ‘burden of proof’. Put simply, if there is a ‘reasonable doubt’ that the defendant did what they were charged with, then the defendant must be given the benefit of that…
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13th January 2016
The Government has recently announced that the temporary permitted development rights for a change of use from offices to dwelling houses will become permanent. This is part of its drive to try to find one million homes by 2020. While the permitted development right may only contribute a fraction of that target, it will help developers who want to convert offices into homes. But what…
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07th January 2016
You may be alarmed to learn that there are more than 1,000,000 uninsured drivers on UK roads. Uninsured drivers are said to add £30 to every insurance premium. So what happens if you have an accident with an uninsured driver or the person causing the accident cannot be traced? There are more than 350,000 ‘hit and run’ accidents in the UK every year. Fortunately, most…
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21st December 2015
In the summer 2015 budget George Osborne announced plans to increase the Inheritance Tax (IHT) Nil Rate Band to £1 million by 2020/21 by the introduction of a ‘Residence Nil Rate Band’. These provisions were included in the Finance (No. 2) Act 2015 which has now received Royal Assent. Inheritance Tax is currently payable on death at 40% on the value above £325,000 for individuals…
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21st December 2015
George Osborne’s Autumn Statement and Spending Review on Wednesday 25th November was seized upon by some as a U-turn damaging his austerity credentials. It was certainly surprising to hear the Chancellor reversing his tax credit proposals, offering significant incentives to home buyers and ensuring that pensioners continued to be treated as almost a special case – all made possible from reduced Government debt charges and…
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21st December 2015
In the Budget on 8th July 2015 George Osbourne announced plans to restrict the Income Tax relief currently available to individuals on finance costs for ‘buy to let’ properties. This policy is intended to ‘ensure that landlords with higher incomes no longer receive the most generous tax treatment’. From 6th April 2017, only 75% of the financing costs can be claimed against rental income and…
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17th December 2015
At George Ide we know that not all accidents happen at home. English courts are able to deal with claims arising from accidents elsewhere in the EU, providing the claimant has been ‘habitually resident’ within England and Wales. Our courts can apply the laws of Germany or Poland, for example, to determine a foreign insurer's liability to pay compensation in England. For instance, someone from…
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08th December 2015
We all dream from time to time of starting our own business, especially when you read about those who have taken the leap and become famous, or wealthy, or both. Just look at the popularity of the Dragon’s Den. Even the Government wants you to join in – remember David Cameron saying that talking to entrepreneurs gets him “pumped up”? But we all also know…
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04th December 2015
Stamp Duty on Property was abolished in 2003 and replaced with the confusing and similarly named Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT).  Whereas the old Stamp Duty was based on a value stated in the document, SDLT is a tax on an Owner/Tenant not on the Property itself. In addition the old Stamp Duty rules were relatively straight forward whereas SDLT is assessed on the basis…
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