Legal News

Trustee of Deceased Bankrupt Cannot Claim Payment From Spouse

Financial problems are frequently connected with marital problems, and the interplay between family law and insolvency law can produce legal complications. In a recent instance, the court had to decide what to do about a claim from the receiver in...

Court Rejects Unprovable Claim of Property Gift

Arguments over the division of estates are unfortunately common where the value of the assets they contain is substantial, especially if family relationships are fractious. In such circumstances, the distribution of an estate can be delayed by legal...

Court Guidance on Jurisdiction

When contracts have an international element and a dispute arises, it is often necessary to ascertain at a very early stage which country's courts have jurisdiction to deal with the dispute. In the case of a dispute over a contract, the place of performance...

Survivorship Clause Leads to Double Benefit for Beneficiaries

There is an established legal principle that where people have wills benefiting each other (as is normal with the wills of a husband and wife) and the order in which they died cannot be ascertained, it is considered that the older of the two will have been...

Jail Threat for Man Who Failed to Cooperate in Divorce Proceedings

Divorce is normally a difficult time for all concerned and the financial arrangements can be very contentious. Normally, problems revolve around the failure to provide accurate disclosure of assets, but on some occasions there is a total failure to...

Failure to Adopt Sound Business Principles Proves Costly

Cases involving negligent valuations have been passing through the courts steadily over the years – many triggered by the financial meltdown in 2008. A recent decision involved the reliance of a bank on a valuation provided in support of a £1.8...

Alcoholism and Mental Capacity

In order to make a valid will, you need to know your own mind – and it helps to have a solicitor on hand to advise you. That was certainly so in a case in which a businessman left the lion's share of his £1 million fortune to a friend and...

Continued Use of Defective Devices - Who is at Fault?

Disputes between insurers and claimants under insurance policies are common, and a recent dispute raised an interesting question: What is the position if a person or business uses a device which they know to be faulty and this results in subsequent damage?...

Child Protection More Important Than Family Togetherness

Family judges are used to controversy and accept the fact that there will always be an embittered few who accuse them of 'playing God'. However, one striking case shows that they will only break up families when doing so is necessary to ensure the...

Non-Working Daughter Loses Claim for Financial Provision

Claims by disappointed children seeking a share, or a larger share, of a parental estate are on the rise, with the latest figures published showing a year-on-year increase of more than 10 per cent in such claims. Although a widely reported case ( Ilott v...

Slipshod Execution of Contracts Can Come Back to Haunt You!

Slipshod execution of contractual documents can come back to haunt you, and that is one good reason why you should always have the benefit of qualified legal advice. In one case , the waters were so muddied that the High Court was unable to say, without...

Delay Denies Financial Support for Divorcee

It is not uncommon for affection and trust to survive the end of a marriage – but legal advice is still almost always required to ensure a fair outcome. In one striking case, a woman who waited until almost 20 years had passed since her divorce before...

Undisclosed Assets on Break-Up Cause Problems for Executor

When a couple break up, a financial settlement is normally agreed between them as part of the proceedings and that, usually, is that. However, in a recent case involving civil partners who had split up , the death of one partner shortly after the financial...

What You Do as Well as What You Agree in Writing Matters

It is a common misconception that contracts have to be agreed in writing or orally to be binding. However, a contract can also be valid if it is performed…even if the documentation requires that it must be formally agreed to be valid. A recent case...

Fertility Clinic Blunder Led to Mother Adopting Her Own Child

The requirements of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008 are strict and any procedural error by fertility clinics can cause untold legal complications and misery. That was certainly so in one case in which a form-filling error led to a woman...

Need to Ensure Will Understood Emphasised in Court Ruling

There are a number of criteria which must apply in order for a will to be valid and one of the most important is that the person making the will fully understands its implications. A recent case concerned the will of a man who had a long history of...

Court Stresses Need for Facts in Child Residence Dispute

Divorces with an international dimension are often complex and, where the question arises as to which parent will look after children and in which country, the courts are often involved. When making these decisions, the courts will always put the child's...

Swift Justice Sees Director Receive £105,000 Bill

It is regrettably not unheard of for directors to flout their duties and help themselves to company money to which they are not entitled. However, one High Court case showed that professionally managed litigation can be a swift means of catching up with...

Everyone Makes Mistakes

When a businessman died, he left his substantial and complex business affairs in the hands of his executors – his brother, his widow and his accountant. As his business had been run with his brother, it was agreed that the two families' respective...

Insolvency No Bar to Liability for Support Payments

A recent decision of the High Court will come as a comfort to those whose ex-spouses have fallen into arrears with their child maintenance payments. It involved a man who was behind with child maintenance payments payable to the Child Support Agency when he...

Winding Up Petitions and Validation Orders - High Court Guidance

From the moment a winding up petition is presented against a company, any payments that it makes become legally void if a winding up order is granted. However, what happens if supplies are made to that company before the supplier is aware of the winding up...

Are Your Elderly Relatives Safe Against Fraudsters?

Elderly people are often vulnerable to fraudsters and that is why it is essential to ensure that they have access to proper legal advice. In one case that proves the point, a widow in her 80s was persuaded by a charming conman to transfer her £500,000...

Defiant Divorcee Who Refused to Leave Matrimonial Home Punished

Obedience to court orders is not voluntary and judges possess a battery of powers to enforce compliance. In one case, a divorcee who barricaded himself into his former matrimonial home in order to prevent its enforced sale was given ten days to move out...

Trustees' Duties of Disclosure to Will Beneficiaries

Beneficiaries often have to wait for many years after a person's death to inherit under a will – but to what extent do they have a right to be kept informed of what is being done with the relevant funds in the interim? The High Court gave important...

In Business With a Friend? Don't Dispense With Formalities

When entering into a business partnership with someone you also consider to be a soulmate, putting in place formal agreements with them can seem inappropriate. However, personal relationships can turn sour and, in one case, the equity in a buy-to-let...
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