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18th January 2019
When acquiring a property your solicitor is likely to recommend you undertake a variety of searches to get the full picture before you buy. A legal title review will not uncover every potential issue, so it is a good idea to undertake additional due diligence via a highways search with the relevant county council. This type of search will show the extent of the public…
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11th January 2019
Every day, it seems, we see from the news headlines how dangerous it can be if your vehicle breaks down on a motorway or major road, or if you need to stop on a motorway hard shoulder. Other vehicles passing at high speed put you in an extremely vulnerable and frightening position, and it is even more perilous when you have broken down in the…
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31st December 2018
Dispute resolution solicitors regularly receive enquiries from clients who have found themselves in dispute with a builder they have engaged to undertake works on their property. Such disputes can be complex, with problems often arising because the parties did not make clear from the outset what it was they were agreeing. In a perfect world, a formal contract that reflects or incorporates an agreed specification…
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20th December 2018
During this season of goodwill, it is not unusual for our thoughts to turn towards the giving of gifts and, even in the current climate of austerity, it is possible to make significant gifts that will reduce your future Inheritance Tax (IHT) liability. The gifting rules are clear: everyone is allowed to make IHT-exempt gifts totalling £3,000 per year. One year’s allowance or part thereof…
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07th December 2018
In November 2018, the UK government published its response to a public consultation on road safety for cyclists and pedestrians. As a personal injury lawyer and a keen cyclist, I contributed evidence as part of the consultation – I have also been considering the Department for Transport’s response and future plans. The government’s ultimate aim is clearly expressed: by 2040, most people should travel short…
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07th December 2018
Despite overwhelming opposition, the government looks set to introduce a substantial increase in probate fees that will take effect from April 2019. Aimed at the wealthiest members of society, this new stealth tax is expected to raise £145 million in its first year, with the proceeds being used to subsidise court reforms. Under the new rules, no probate fee will be payable on estates worth…
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29th November 2018
This week marks Good Divorce Week 2018, a national campaign designed to raise awareness of how separating parents can minimise the impact of conflict on their children and calling for government to reform the divorce process by remove the element of blame. Backed by Resolution, formerly known as the Solicitors Family Law Association, the campaign for no-fault divorce also promotes the work of family law…
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16th November 2018
Many commercial property clients grapple with the question of how to categorise and document the occupation of a property. Whilst many landlords would like to get an occupier into their property as soon as possible, to cover the running costs for example, it is important to take care with the paperwork and ensure the documentation accurately reflects the intention of both parties from the outset…
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12th November 2018
Property buyers looking for a bargain can find themselves drawn to auctions in search of discounts against market value of 20 per cent – after all, who does not like to feel they are getting a bargain? But unfortunately, in many cases, it turns out that there are plenty of things not to like and the old cliché that speaks to getting what you pay…
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02nd November 2018
Writing in this column we have previously recommended everyone looking to acquire a property should undertake certain searches with the relevant authorities – because not all matters are apparent simply from a review of legal title. One of the most important searches is a water and drainage search, which can be undertaken with the water authority that serves the property’s local area. The results of…
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