​Accountant Who Worked Exclusively for One Client Became an Employee

The distinction between employment and self-employment is a continuing source of controversy and a ruling by the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) that an accountant who worked exclusively for one client fell into the former category has added a new wrinkle to the vexed debate about employment status (Exmoor Ales Limited and Another v Herriot).

The accountant practised in partnership…

​SDLT Reminder

Clients are reminded that from 1 March 2019 the time limit for the payment of Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) on property transactions has been reduced from 30 days to 14 days after completion. Where the amount of SDLT cannot be determined because the sale price is contingent on obtaining planning permission, an application to defer the SDLT payable must be made within 30 days of completion.

​Is IHT Simplification On the Way?

More than 550,000 people die annually in the UK and half of those deaths require the completion of Inheritance Tax (IHT) forms, which are not straightforward and can be a daunting burden at a difficult time for families.

However, only 5 per cent of estates actually end up paying IHT. When there is an IHT liability, the average sum payable is about 20 per cent (the IHT rate is 40 per…

​Indian Businessman Had Domicile of Choice in England

The legal concepts of residence and domicile are very different and the distinction between them can sometimes be crucial. That was certainly so in one case in which the High Court found that a businessman who was born and died in India was nevertheless domiciled in England.

An English woman who had borne a child to the businessman lodged a claim under the Inheritance (Provision for…

​Fake Will Admission May Lead to Criminal Charges

When your spouse's lack of attention to making a will causes issues, faking one is definitely not a good idea, as a Kent woman found out recently.

Her husband died in 2013 leaving various properties in Spain and a flat in England, but no will.

The woman admitted to faking her late husband's will, which she had used to obtain a grant of probate and to sell the Spanish properties.…

​Care Home State Support Limits Unchanged for Ninth Year

Having enough money to pay for care costs in the final years of life is a major concern for many and, despite promises made by governments in the past about limiting the impact on people, in reality the scale of the problem is such that the potential impact on a person's estate has risen year by year.

Care costs will only be fully met by the local authority when the assets of the person…

​Mother Placed Under Improper Judicial Pressure to Consent to Care Orders

The quality of British justice is respected around the world – but there are inevitably occasions when judges overstep the mark. In a family case on point, a mother had her two young children taken into care after a judge dismissed out of hand the arguments put forward in her favour.

The mother was separated from the children's father and trouble broke out when he failed to return her…

​Mother Overturns Finding That She Failed to Protect Her Child

There can be few things more serious for a mother than a judicial finding that she has failed to protect her child from a violent partner. Such a finding has to be based on solid evidence and, in one case, a mother was exonerated after she was able to convince the Court of Appeal that she had done nothing wrong.

The woman's partner had twice in the past committed violent attacks on adult…

​Lost Will Means Court Hearing in Family Dispute

The impossibility of asking a deceased person what their real intentions were makes the value of these being clear before death quite obvious, as a recent case shows.

It involved an elderly widow who died in 2016. After her death, her family discovered an envelope containing a copy of a will dated 2008 and an unsigned draft of the will which her solicitors had prepared for her. The original…

​International Dimension Makes Child Travel Risky

The welfare of children is always top of the list of priorities of the Family Court when making arrangements following the break-up of a family. This can be especially difficult where the parents are from different countries, as shown by a recent case in which the Court considered the welfare of a child of a Mexican mother and an English father.

When the child, aged seven, had expressed…