Disputes and Litigation publications

27 April 2016

Cybercrime: a guide to recognition, prevention and protection

Commercial entities are inevitably reliant upon IT to operationally manage their businesses and to deliver services to their customers. This reliance exposes businesses to the risk of falling victim to cybercrime. This briefing sets out some of the types of scams that cybercriminals employ, how to recognise them, and how companies can make themselves less susceptible to them.

29 March 2016

Insurance reform – redress when insurers pay late

The Enterprise Bill 2015, if enacted, will enable policyholders to claim damages from insurers for losses suffered as a result of insurers not paying claims within a reasonable period of time.

23 March 2016

Sweett victory: Lessons learned from Sweett Group’s Bribery Act conviction

Sweett Group plc, the first company to be convicted of the “corporate offence” under Section 7 of the Bribery Act 2010, has now been sentenced. We compare two cases that provide interesting guidance as to the dos and don'ts when faced with allegations of bribery.

26 February 2016

Method in the MADness: The new Market Abuse Regulation

The EU’s market abuse framework will shortly be overhauled as the Market Abuse Directive is repealed by the Market Abuse Regulation (MAR). In this briefing we summarise the key changes to the existing market abuse regime. 

29 January 2016

Testing Times: Criminal culpability in the Volkswagen emissions scandal

This briefing explores the potential criminal prosecutions that might be brought against Volkswagen and/or its officials under UK law, after Volkswagen admitted that it deliberately falsified the emissions readings of 11 million of its diesel-fuelled vehicles world-wide.

20 January 2016

How many law firms is it reasonable for co-parties to instruct?

The High Court decision in the case of Ong & Ors v Ping is a useful warning that the costs of separate representation in trust litigation may not be recoverable in full for successful parties.

14 January 2016

ORR’s updated enforcement policy and penalty statement for Railway licences

The Office of Rail and Road recently updated its enforcement policy for railway licence holders during December 2015. The policy sets out the ORR’s approach to economic regulation of compliance with all railway licences.

07 January 2016

General Court: submitting evidence of genuine use by means of CD-ROM is acceptable

Jennifer Gibson has authored an article in World Trademark Review Daily. This article first appeared on WTR Daily, part of World Trademark Review, in December 2015. For further information, please go to www.worldtrademarkreview.com.

23 December 2015

The Giant Awakens: Bribery Act 2010

The period of relative calm which followed the implementation of the Bribery Act 2010 four years ago has ended, and there have been three new, important cases. In this briefing, we summarise these cases, explain their significance and provide a reminder of some practical guidance to minimise the risk of organisations committing the corporate offence.

16 December 2015

Real Estate Disputes Case Review 2015

Our Real Estate Disputes team provides a month-by-month breakdown of the most significant property cases of 2015. 

14 December 2015

Automatic suspension hearings – bar raised slightly higher for challengers to maintain an automatic suspension?

In the latest of a series of automatic suspension cases, the Court has allowed the public purchaser to proceed with the contract. We look at the case of OpenView Security Solutions Limited v The London Borough of Merton Council.

10 December 2015

Parent company liable for safety breaches of its subsidiary

A parent company has recently been found guilty of corporate manslaughter, following the death of an employee at the site of one of the subsidiaries.

07 December 2015

Fitting the punishment to the crime: The legitimacy of lifetime bans for first time doping offences

Our article considers the issue of lifetime bans for doping offences in the wake of the WADA Independent Commission report into allegations of coordinated and state sponsored doping in Russian athletics.

01 December 2015

The Bribery Act 2010 - Health Check: Adequate Procedures

27 November 2015

After ParkingEye: When will private parking fines still be unenforceable?

Transport and retail sector operators that provide parking schemes on private land, and parking enforcement companies that operate such schemes, may take an interest in a recent decision of the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court has now held that, on particular facts, an £85 parking charge was not a penalty but an enforceable charge for breach of a parking contract.

27 November 2015

Dealing with Travellers on Commercial Premises

The unauthorised and unexpected arrival of travellers can be a common problem for landowners and businesses, particularly those with open sites that are more vulnerable to occupation, for example car parks or land awaiting development.

25 November 2015

Determining and Mitigating ‘Material Risk’

The recent decision in C-T Aviation Solutions Limited v Regina (Health and Safety Executive) sets out the guidance on what is a material risk and therefore when an organisation should implement control measures sufficient to control it. In this case the risk was to a pedestrian crossing an airport road.

19 November 2015

Why a property’s transaction and valuation history remains an important tool for valuers

The Court of Appeal has recently reversed the first instance finding of a negligent overvaluation of commercial property in the widely reported case of Titan Europe 2006-3 PLC v Colliers International UK PLC (in liquidation) [2015] EWCA Civ 1083

12 November 2015

International arbitration in sport: Why the Pechstein case could throw the Court of Arbitration for Sport into disarray

Jeremy Dickerson, James Pheasant and Chris Davies from our Sport team consider the case in their recent article for LawyerIssue. 

04 November 2015

Business Critical Fines for Health and Safety Breaches

On 3 November 2015, the Sentencing Council issued the new ‘Definitive Guideline’ for Health and Safety, Corporate Manslaughter and Food Safety and Hygiene Offences. They will apply to all sentences on or after 1 February 2016 regardless of the date of breach.

04 November 2015

Fourth Money Laundering Directive tightens AML requirements while government consults on cutting AML red tape

The Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive came into force on 26 June 2015, and must be transposed by Member States into their national legislation by 26 June 2017. It will modify and extend customer due diligence requirements and reinforce the “risk-based” approach to money laundering risks.

03 November 2015

Crossing the bridge from 'mind sport' to 'real sport'

James Pheasant explains the significance of the latest High Court ruling dealing with the thorny issue of whether bridge should be defined as a sport. This article was first published on Lexis®PSL Public Law on 22 October 2015. Click for a free trial of Lexis®PSL.

30 October 2015

Modern Slavery Act 2015 - Guidance on how to comply with the Reporting Requirement

“Transparency in Supply Chains etc: A Practical Guide” is the new Statutory Guidance on Section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015. This briefing explores the key aspects of this guidance and provides insight into what your organisation can be doing now to comply.

13 October 2015

Alternative Dispute Resolution for disputes initiated by consumers

Consumers sometimes have difficulty getting redress for unsatisfactory goods or services, particularly when they buy online. Alternative Dispute Resolution should enable disputes to be settled in an informal way, more quickly and cheaply than going to court.

09 October 2015

ORR issues new Guidance for Complaints Handling Procedures

Following ORR’s call for consultation responses in relation to new Guidance for Complaints Handling Procedures, ORR have now written to stakeholders informing them of the outcome of that consultation and published new Guidance for CHPs effective from 30 September 2015.

21 September 2015

Reduced possibility of aggregation of claims by solicitors’ insurers

The High Court has clarified the meaning of the aggregation clause in the Solicitors’ Minimum Terms and Conditions of professional indemnity insurance. In a recent decision it construed the aggregation on a narrow basis. This may come as a relief to many solicitors carrying lower limits of PI insurance and their clients, who could otherwise have seen aggregation clauses drastically reduce the scope of their insurance cover.

31 August 2015

Concept – Autumn 2015

Our latest IP bulletin looks at Community Trade Marks, the economic cost of IPR infringement, the trade mark status of LEGO figures and more. 

24 August 2015

The Insurance Act 2015 - are you ready for the change?

On 12 August 2016 the Insurance Act 2015 comes into force and will make substantial changes to insurance law in England & Wales. This will affect not only how disputes between businesses and their insurers are dealt with by the Courts but also the obligations on a business when purchasing insurance.

21 August 2015

Ignorance is (not) bliss: SMEs fail to appreciate Bribery Act 2010

A recent survey commissioned by the Ministry of Justice and Department for Business, Innovation and Skills shows a concerning lack of awareness and understanding of the Bribery Act 2010 amongst small and medium sized enterprises.

14 August 2015

LIBOR Prison Blues: SFO secures 14 year sentence for trader

A former UBS and Citigroup trader, Tom Hayes, has been sentenced to 14 years in prison after he was found guilty of conspiring to manipulate LIBOR. This is the first conviction in the LIBOR manipulation scandal and is one of the most severe sentences obtained by the SFO to date.

10 August 2015

Contractual interpretation in cupcakes - applying the interpretation rules in Arnold v Britton

The High Court has been quick to apply the Supreme Court’s decision in Arnold v Britton on contractual interpretation in a supply agreement for cupcakes. Honeyrose Bakery Ltd v Lola’s Kitchen Ltd (t/a Lola’s Cupcakes).

10 August 2015

Use it or lose it: to maintain a CTM registration “genuine use” is required beyond just one Member State

In a recent Intellectual Property Enterprise Court decision, the High Court has found two Community Trade Marks (“CTMs”) owned by Sofa Workshop for the words “SOFA WORKSHOP” to be liable to be revoked for non-use and therefore unenforceable in infringement proceedings against Sofaworks. This briefing discusses the findings in greater detail.

05 August 2015

Turning criminal: Supreme Court considers when property becomes "criminal" for purposes of POCA 2002

The Supreme Court recently considered in R v GH [2015] UKSC 24 the law relating to prosecutions for money laundering. We review the arrangement offence under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, the Supreme Court’s judgment in R v GH [2015] UKSC 24 and practical reminders for businesses on their money laundering obligations.

20 July 2015

Re-financing debt and the effect of lender claims – avoiding getting bogged down in technicalities

Where a loan has been re-financed by a party related to the original lender the Court of Appeal has confirmed that the original lender was not prevented from seeking recovery actions against negligent advisors. In this briefing we take a look at the case of Swynson Ltd v Lowick Rose LLP.

17 July 2015

Reporting under the Payment Practices Regulation and Modern Slavery Act

The Reports on Payment Practices Regulations 2015 and the Modern Slavery Act 2015 are two very different legislative measures. However, they share important similarities which mean large corporates should be considering their implications closely.

07 July 2015

Allocating and insuring risk - key issues when drafting insurance and liability clauses

Our latest insurance briefing looks at key issues to consider when drafting insurance and liability clauses and highlights a number of recent cases.

06 July 2015

OHIM held to have erred in assessing individual character of umbrella design

Jeremy Dickerson and Jennifer Gibson have co-authored an article in World Trademark Review Daily. This article first appeared on WTR Daily, part of World Trademark Review, in June 2015. For further information, please go to www.worldtrademarkreview.com.

16 June 2015

Sentencing for breaches of Health and Safety by very large organisations

Sentencing guidelines for safety breaches and environmental breaches are changing and are likely to increase substantially for large organisations. Case law is now indicating the practical effect of these changes.

11 June 2015

Conarken reaffirmed: negligent drivers liable to pay for rail network delays

Schedule 8 of a Track Access Contract is “logical, well-researched, carefully constructed, and well supported”. Those are the words of Mr Justice Akenhead in Network Rail v Handy and others meaning drivers (namely insurers) of road vehicles are liable for Network Rail’s TAC Schedule 8 loss if they negligently damage rail track or other installations and cause consequential TOC delays.

08 June 2015

Serious Crime Act 2015 provides protection from civil liability

Section 37 of the Serious Crime Act 2015 which came into force on 1 June 2015 is likely to be welcomed by those operating in the regulated sector. We take a closer look and highlight some practical considerations. 

08 June 2015

European Court says food packaging cannot contain images of food not in the ingredients

The European Court of Justice has said that if food or drink packaging contains images of ingredients that are not in the food or drink product itself this will likely “mislead” consumers and thus fall foul of EU law.

03 June 2015

Public Consultation does not necessarily need to set out alternative options – Moseley revisited

We take a look at the case of R (Angharad Morris and Donna Thomas) v Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council which considers the scope of Moseley in detail in respect of the duty to give information on alternative options in consultations.

01 June 2015

Kidnap and Ransom Policies

Recent changes in legislation have put beyond doubt that businesses will be very unlikely to be able to claim indemnity under a kidnap and ransom policy where there is possible terrorist involvement.

27 May 2015

General Court dismisses appeal to register SKYPE as a community trade mark

The General Court of the European Union has handed down its judgment in Skype’s appeal in relation to the registration of SKYPE as a community trade mark. 

22 May 2015

Challenging Accelerated Payment Notices

The High Court has refused to order injunctions preventing HMRC from issuing accelerated payment notices or enforcing existing APNs.

22 May 2015

Over privileged and under investigation: SFO challenges use of privilege

The SFO has expressed its dissatisfaction with businesses that use legal privilege as a defence against disclosing documentation while under investigation. It says that overly liberal use of the “privilege exception” is obstructing its investigations. The SFO has promised to challenge in the Courts such use of the privilege exception.

20 May 2015

When can a company sue its directors for their illegal acts?

The Supreme Court has confirmed in Jetivia v Bilta that where a company brings a claim against its directors for losses caused by their wrongdoing, the directors cannot escape the claim by arguing that their actions are attributed to the company itself. We discuss the Supreme Courts judgment and the use of the s.213 of the Insolvency Act in further detail.

12 May 2015

Financial Services Series - Issue 18

Recent months have seen a number of judicial reviews brought against the Financial Ombudsman Service (“FOS”). We considered several of these in FSS #11 and FSS #13. The outcome of these claims is helping to clarify the situations in which Financial Services firms will be able to challenge the way an ombudsman has reached a decision. This briefing considers the recent case of R (Chancery (UK) LLP) v FOS and the ramifications of the Administrative Court's rejection.

11 May 2015

The importance of ensuring that contractual employee benefits reflect changes to employees’ roles

We look at a recent case which has highlighted the risk of losing insurance cover when a policy is not updated following business changes.

06 May 2015

Penalty clauses – a move towards a flexible approach

This briefing sets out some of the background to the development of the law on penalties.