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Your employer should tell you when you start work how much you will be paid, how it will be paid to you and when. This must be put in writing within two months of you starting... read more
Various different rules and criteria apply depending on whether you want to visit, work/ study in or permanently settle in the UK. Visiting the UK Most foreign visitors to the... read more
Sales and distribution overseas If you want to sell your wares overseas, you need to decide how you’re going to distribute them. You might opt to sell them directly, e.g.,... read more
Every company has a duty to prepare a set of accounts which report on the company’s performance and activities during the financial year. A copy of these accounts must be sent to... read more
Steps to follow If you have an elderly relative who increasingly needs looking after and you’re responsible for sorting out their care, you must first decide where they are going to... read more
Renting a commercial property for your business requires less financial outlay than buying, freeing up your capital to plough into your business and, unless you plan to sell the remaining... read more
If you or your employer wants to terminate your employment, your employment contract will usually set out how much notice one must give the other before you leave. This may be more generous... read more
You want to ensure that your first meeting with your solicitor is as useful as possible. To ensure your solicitor thoroughly understands your problem and can provide you with proper legal... read more
Steps to follow Report the matter to the police as soon as possible. Dial 999 if it’s an emergency, otherwise, report it to your local police station either in person, via phone or... read more
In harsh economic times, most companies start to examine how they can cut costs and save cash, with eyes almost inevitably turning to the company’s employee wage bill which will... read more
Definition of fraud In England, Wales and Northern Ireland, the fraud laws were overhauled by the Fraud Act 2006 which came into force in 2007. It introduced a statutory... read more
Relevant legislation If you’re a trader who sells to consumers, under the Sale of Goods Act 1979 (SOGA) you must ensure the goods you sell are: as described; fit for the purpose... read more
The days of slum landlords have—in theory at least—ended. As a tenant, you have a right to live in a safe home free from an intrusive or unscrupulous landlord. What you are... read more
When a marriage breaks down, one of the main bones of contention will be deciding how the assets of you and your partner will be divided. Contrary to popular belief, a couple’s... read more
The government collects taxes from individuals through HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) under a variety of different headings including: Income Tax, Capital Gains Tax (CGT), Inheritance Tax... read more
Steps to follow Renting The easiest way of finding a private residence to rent is through a letting agency. The agency may also manage the property on the landlord’s... read more
Steps to follow Where do you want to trade? Is it within the EU or outside? You will need to do thorough research to ensure you are complying with all relevant laws and... read more
There are laws specifically designed to protect prospective or new parents and there are a range of benefits and allowances that you are entitled to as well. Pregnant employees If... read more
Steps to follow Bullying in the workplace is where someone tries to intimidate another worker. It is defined by Acas as “Offensive, intimidating, malicious or insulting behaviour,... read more
Joining commercial ventures with other businesses may be an attractive proposition, especially, for example, if you or the other party want to sell your products in unfamiliar... read more
Retirement Age You can retire at any age you want – as long as you can afford it – but the default retirement age in the UK is 65. When you reach this age your employer can... read more
Lawyers don’t come cheap, and sometimes the people who need them most can’t afford to pay. If you are unable to pay a lawyer, then there are several options available to... read more
Steps to follow If you feel your building work has been botched or isn’t finished, first work out who your contract is with. This could be the builder, architect/ structural... read more
Steps to follow Have you failed to report a change in your personal circumstances to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) or council or deliberately provided incorrect information... read more
Steps to follow Are you in dispute with a customer over goods or services that you supplied, or are you a customer who is dissatisfied with your supplier? The best solution is to try to... read more
Who can get married? Any two people can get married in the UK provided they are: Aged 16 or over Of different sex Not too closely related Unmarried and not in... read more
An increasing number of disputes over wills are ending up in the courts. These disputes are often bitterly contested and can have a devastating effect on the family unity. One reason... read more
You are a victim of identity theft if someone pretends to be you in order to steal money or gain some other sort of benefit. Offences It is an offence to possess, control and intend... read more
Steps to follow If you’ve been injured at work, you should (if you are capable of doing so) record the details of the incident in your employer's accident book. (All employers,... read more
Pre-employment checks You’ve made it through the interview and you’ve been offered a new job – all good news, but it’s a wise idea to get the job offer in... read more
Renting out property is not as easy as it might look to the outsider. The landlord has many responsibilities towards the tenant, and must take care of a multitude of repairs, insurance and... read more
Every company has its ups and downs but you need to ensure your business can run as a viable concern in the good times and bad. If your company is having problems, there are several things... read more
There are a range of businesses in the UK which require a licence. These are generally issued, administered, and policed by local authorities. Licensing authorities must carry out their... read more
Divorce can be a painful and protracted experience. Preparing for it, and exploring all the available options, however, can go a long way towards reducing the stress. Marriage guidance... read more
Legal problems arise in business all the time and the temptation might be to run to a lawyer every time to get them to sort the problem out for you. There is no doubt that in some... read more
Famously, one in three marriages ends in divorce. This is a depressing statistic. Divorce can be a hugely traumatic and costly experience for both parties. A divorce is the ending of... read more
Steps to follow If you feel there may be a time in the future when you don’t want to make decisions about your property and financial affairs or your health welfare, or you feel you... read more
Buying or selling a property is, for many, a major life event. It can be a complicated process, but there will be plenty of professional help on hand to guide you through the various... read more
If your company is insolvent – i.e. it doesn’t have enough money to pay off its debts – there are several different possible outcomes. Some of these could involve allowing... read more
Goods All consumers have rights when they buy faulty goods from someone acting in the course of trade, although the type of rights you have may depend on what you bought and how... read more
Law firms are busy places. They come in various shapes and sizes, from sprawling multinational operations to just one solicitor working as a sole practitioner from a high street... read more
Employment Law If your dream job is turning into a nightmare, or your ‘perfect’ employee is wreaking havoc in the workplace, then you may need the help of an employment... read more
Steps to follow Do you have debts which you are totally unable to repay? You can declare yourself bankrupt which is a means of clearing debts you can’t pay. If you owe... read more
An individual is entitled to represent themselves or their business at a court or tribunal. This is the case whether the individual is a claimant or a defendant. It may seem a daunting... read more
There are several points to think about when choosing a lawyer, and the most important one is to select a lawyer with experience in the right area of law. Solicitors are usually highly... read more
Cost is always going to be a concern when using legal services, and you may be wondering how lawyers charge? First of all, solicitors have a professional duty to follow rules set down... read more
Once you have arranged your first meeting with a solicitor, it’s a good idea to gather your paperwork together and work out what questions you want to ask. Otherwise, you could end up... read more
Steps to follow Make sure your credit rating is in good shape – some companies do free credit checks. You can improve your credit rating by: registering on the electoral roll at... read more
If you’re an employee and expectant mum, you’re entitled to 26 weeks of ordinary maternity leave (OML) and 26 weeks additional maternity leave (AML) which – as long as you... read more
Estate planning is the process of disposing of an estate in a way which is designed to eradicate uncertainties over the administration of a probate and maximize the value of the estate. If... read more
Employees and workers in the UK enjoy a number of employment rights by law. You are classed as an employee if you are a working under a contract of employment. Employment... read more
We all think we know about crime—it is a theft, murder, fraud or assault. The British public are avid watchers of television crime dramas, and readers of crime fiction. But what... read more
Making a will gives you the power to decide how your assets and possessions are divided up after you pass away. It means you can protect your final wishes and safeguard the interests of... read more
Steps to follow Are you owed money and beginning to get fed up of excuse after excuse? Or, do you have debts that you can’t pay? Either way, take action and sort the problem... read more
Steps to follow If you’re unhappy with HMRC’s service – eg unreasonable delay, an avoidable mistake, or how you’ve been treated – first talk to the person or... read more
Steps to follow If you think your bank is treating you unfairly – eg overcharging you for a service or selling you a product without explaining the risks – your first move... read more
Steps to follow Is your bank account continually in the red? Are you falling further and further behind with you bill or mortgage payments? Are you being turned down for credit with high... read more
Having children is a lifelong commitment. Regardless of whether or not the parents stay together – or ever were in a relationship at all – they both have a responsibility to... read more
Steps to follow There are a number of good reasons for making a will: not least that you can arrange your affairs so your loved ones pay less tax after you’ve gone; and you can... read more
Steps to follow If you’re pregnant, you’re allowed time off work for antenatal care. This can include medical appointments, as well as antenatal or parenting classes if... read more
What is bankruptcy? If you are an individual and you are insolvent, i.e. you have debts which you are totally unable to repay, then you may have to consider bankruptcy as an... read more
Steps to follow If a relative has died and you’re in charge of sorting out their affairs there are a number of people and organisations you need to inform starting with the family... read more
Businesses often have to borrow money, and how to do this is a question it pays to research. Borrowing may be necessary while the business is starting up, if a big order comes in, or if... read more
Buying Businesses tend to rent premises rather than buy them as finding vacant commercial premises for sale is often hard. Buying also tends to tie up what could be crucial capital and... read more
Before the court hearing There are certain steps your lender must take before it takes action to repossess your home. This applies to most residential mortgages. Proof that the correct... read more
Bankruptcy is an option – sometimes an unavoidable one – available to individuals who are unable to pay their debts and are thus insolvent. You can declare yourself bankrupt or,... read more
Why write a will? Failing to make a will means your belongings will be distributed according to the laws of the country you live in – which may not be in the manner you would... read more
A company is insolvent when it cannot pay its debts and its assets are less than its debts. Unless you can find a way to pay off those debts pretty quickly then the insolvency may lead to... read more
Late payment of invoices can make or break a company – especially a small one. Many businesses are often not keen to chase debtors too hard for fear of damaging their relationship... read more
Different types of business have different legal structures and the kind you choose will depend on the sort of business you have and what you want out of it. The tax/national insurance and... read more
If you are company is struggling to trade and pay its debts when they become due, and you discover that your assets are worth less than your debts, then your company is insolvent. If this... read more
Steps to follow How much do you need to borrow? How soon can you pay it back? How quickly do you need it? What assets do you have? These questions need to be answered before you can... read more
Despite popular belief, there is no such thing in the UK as “common law marriage”. If you and your partner are living together you have considerably less rights than couples who... read more
The death of a loved one is a distressing time. There are practicalities surrounding death which need to be taken care of, such as arranging the funeral and winding up the estate of the... read more
In recent years law firms have reported a significant increase in the number of couples deciding to divorce later in life. Official statistics have also revealed that couples married for... read more
Steps to follow Do you feel you are owed money by someone and all attempts to resolve the dispute without resorting to court action have failed? If you decide to take the matter to... read more
Steps to follow The state pension is worth less than £5,000 per annum for a single person, and about £7,500 for couples. You can draw it, if you have paid enough national... read more
It’s infuriating, sometimes embarrassing, and can be costly. There are, however, various avenues open to you when a debtor refuses to pay up. First steps When attempting to... read more
Whether we purchase goods from a shop, another person, or across the internet, we have legal rights as consumers. We also have rights when we hire goods or enter into a hire-purchase... read more
There are two main types of pension in the UK: money-purchase and final salary schemes. Money-purchase schemes include occupational money purchase, personal pensions, stakeholder... read more
Steps to follow Seller issues the contract package which consists of a draft contract, Official Copies of the legal title, copies of any deed/documents which affect the title, a Sellers... read more
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