Furlough ending on 30th September: Keeping good lines of communication

There will be a ‘bloodbath of redundancies when furlough support starts to reduce’
UK chancellor Rishi Sunak will not extend the furlough scheme which could lead to a “bloodbath of redundancies” and with the benefits that are on offer pre-Covid many people are reluctant to go back to work.

Currently, the furlough scheme is due to end on 30 September, by which time, according to the government roadmap, all social distancing restrictions will be lifted. So, it will be a return to a time of “pre-covid normality”. Although it won’t be as the world has changed since March 2020.

Looking forward, for both employers and employees, the key concepts to bear in mind are planning and good communication.

If you are an employer and you have staff on furlough, start considering now what you think your workforce will look like in the autumn. If it is going to be smaller as a result of redundancies,  bear in mind that the redundancy process takes time and can be complicated (you should not undertake a redundancy process before getting proper legal advice).

If you are an employee on furlough and you think that you might be made redundant when furlough ends, there is no harm in seeing what else is out there.

Keeping good lines of communication open is important so as to reduce misunderstandings and allow parties to better plan for the future.

If you have any employment law queries, please do not hesitate to contact David Nathan at dnathan@gscsolicitors.com or on 020 7822 2247.

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© 2021 GSC Solicitors LLP. All rights reserved. GSC grants permission for the browsing of this material and for the printing of one copy per person for personal reference. GSC’s written permission must be obtained for any other use of this material. This publication has been prepared only as a guide to provide readers with general information on recent legal developments. It is not formal legal advice and should not be relied on for any purpose. You should not act or refrain from acting based on the information contained in this document without obtaining specific formal advice from suitably qualified advisors.

 

Execution of a warrant of possession coming on 6th July

Today Richard Curtin who heads GSC’s Insolvency & Restructuring department, received notification from the court of the execution of a warrant of possession on 6 July.

This shows that the Courts are now enforcing warrants of possession for residential premises and sooner than many would have expected.

As to commercial premises, the moratorium on forfeiture & winding up petitions is due to end at the end of this month.

If not extended by the Government then Richard expects to see plenty of activity on the part of landlords, solicitors, insolvency practitioners and the Courts.

If you have any questions or concerns about your business, contact Richard Curtin directly on rcurtin@gscsolicitors.com or 020 7822 2222.

© 2021 GSC Solicitors LLP. All rights reserved. GSC grants permission for the browsing of this material and for the printing of one copy per person for personal reference. GSC’s written permission must be obtained for any other use of this material. This publication has been prepared only as a guide to provide readers with general information on recent legal developments. It is not formal legal advice and should not be relied on for any purpose. You should not act or refrain from acting based on the information contained in this document without obtaining specific formal advice from suitably qualified advisors.

 

Eviction ban lifted – what does it mean for you

warrant 6th july

But a landlord said she had struggled to pay her mortgage while her tenant was not paying rent. The government said it was balancing the needs of landlords to use the courts with support for tenants by continuing to require extended notice periods.

During the pandemic, bailiffs were asked not to carry out evictions if anyone living in the property had Covid-19 symptoms or was self-isolating. Eviction notice periods were extended to six months as an emergency measure during the pandemic – but will drop to four months from 1 June. Before the pandemic, notice periods were usually two months in England.

‘The main reaction is that the gloves are off but expect delays, because there will be a severe backlog’, says Head of Litigation & Dispute Resolution, Michael Shapiro.

He continues, ‘Landlords should be cautious when deciding to evict tenants because they may find it difficult to re-let rather than accept the loss of the arrears, or come into arrangement with the tenant for the arrears to be paid over time, whilst allowing the tenant to remain in the property and paying their ongoing rent in full.’

If you have been affected by the new change in law, please do not hesitate to contact Michael Shapiro directly on: mshapiro@gscsolicitors.com or 0207 822 2246.

© 2021 GSC Solicitors LLP. All rights reserved. GSC grants permission for the browsing of this material and for the printing of one copy per person for personal reference. GSC’s written permission must be obtained for any other use of this material. This publication has been prepared only as a guide to provide readers with general information on recent legal developments. It is not formal legal advice and should not be relied on for any purpose. You should not act or refrain from acting based on the information contained in this document without obtaining specific formal advice from suitably qualified advisors.

Source: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-57262181 

Can an employer require staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19?

With restrictions easing in the UK, employers are facing one more question: can they make vaccination at work compulsory for their staff? Is there a law requiring vaccination? Why mandatory vaccination can become problematic?

Head of Employment team at GSC Solicitors LLP, David Nathan talks your through these questions and explains what can an employer do.

If you have any employment law queries, please do not hesitate to contact David Nathan at dnathan@gscsolicitors.com or on 020 7822 2247.

© 2021 GSC Solicitors LLP. All rights reserved. GSC grants permission for the browsing of this material and for the printing of one copy per person for personal reference. GSC’s written permission must be obtained for any other use of this material. This publication has been prepared only as a guide to provide readers with general information on recent legal developments. It is not formal legal advice and should not be relied on for any purpose. You should not act or refrain from acting based on the information contained in this document without obtaining specific formal advice from suitably qualified advisors.

 

 

How to save money by switching to Ethical Banking

What are ethical banks? An ethical bank, also known as a social, alternative, civic, or sustainable bank, is a bank concerned with the social and environmental impacts of its investments and loans. The term is a fairly broad one, which means it covers a wide range of ideas and concepts under its umbrella.

A wide scope of things is included, ranging from banks offering loans and financial assistance to start-ups that are environmentally friendly to those that serve struggling communities or help individuals looking for affordable housing.

The root of ethical banking is a core set of principles and beliefs. Ethical banks remain true to their core model of conduct.

In this video of The GSC Academy Associate Solicitor Leila Mustafa talks about the definition of Ethical Banking, how it can save you money and make you feel good about the impact of your personal finance.

If you need assistance with either switching to Ethical Banking or with any ethical finance products, please do not hesitate to contact Leila Mustafa directly on lmustafa@gscsolicitors.com or 0207 822 2222.

© 2021 GSC Solicitors LLP. All rights reserved. GSC grants permission for the browsing of this material and for the printing of one copy per person for personal reference. GSC’s written permission must be obtained for any other use of this material. This publication has been prepared only as a guide to provide readers with general information on recent legal developments. It is not formal legal advice and should not be relied on for any purpose. You should not act or refrain from acting based on the information contained in this document without obtaining specific formal advice from suitably qualified advisors.

 

Abbey Road Institute’s Revival of Angel Recording Studios

We are absolutely delighted to have concluded the acquisition of Abbey Road Institute’s new home at Angel Recording Studios in Islington!  Harvey Posener and Amee Popat in our Real Estate team did the legal work for the lease of the premises and are delighted to have been involved in this exciting new chapter for the Abbey Road Institute, Abbey Road Studios’ education division, which is part of the Universal Music Group.

Angel Recording Studios is an iconic studio which has hosted names such as Adele, Sam Smith and Florence and the Machine, and recordings of film scores such as GoldenEye and Downton Abbey.

It sadly closed in 2019 but will be restored by ARI over the coming months to house cutting edge music and audio production and training facilities for its students as well as a commercial recording studio.

https://abbeyroadinstitute.co.uk/blog/abbey-road-institute-to-move-into-angel-recording-studios/ 

For further questions or for help with your property-related issues, please do not hesitate to contact Harvey Posener directly on hdposener@gscsolicitors.com   or Amee Popat on apopat@gscsolicitors.com or 0207 822 2222.

© 2021 GSC Solicitors LLP. All rights reserved.  GSC grants permission for the browsing of this material and for the printing of one copy per person for personal reference. GSC’s written permission must be obtained for any other use of this material. This publication has been prepared only as a guide to provide readers with general information on recent legal developments. It is not formal legal advice and should not be relied on for any purpose. You should not act or refrain from acting based on the information contained in this document without obtaining specific formal advice from suitably qualified advisors.

 

Sana Sheikh featured in UKPBC’s Business Times magazine

GSC’s Senior Associate Solicitor Sana Sheikh, who advises on matters under Commercial Litigation & Dispute Resolution, has recently been interviewed by The Business Times magazine, the official publication by the UK Pakistan Business Council (UKPBC).

Sana spoke about The GSC’s Next Gen programme, an initiative run by GSC Solicitors LLP and aimed at providing guidance and support to tomorrow’s business leaders.

Describing the initiative, Sana explained who it is purposed for, what the main objectives are and how it can help the next generation of entrepreneurs, professionals and business owners.

The Business Times features most prominent people, such as Imran Khan, Boris Johnson, Imran Ismail, Sahibzada Jahangir and many more.

The publication is aimed at creating a vast international business network though which businesses can share knowledge and forge trading relationships.

If you would like further explanation or become a member of The GSC’s Next Gen, please do not hesitate to contact Sana Sheikh on sanasheikh@gscsolicitors.com or 0207 822 2214.

© 2021 GSC Solicitors LLP. All rights reserved.  GSC grants permission for the browsing of this material and for the printing of one copy per person for personal reference. GSC’s written permission must be obtained for any other use of this material. This publication has been prepared only as a guide to provide readers with general information on recent legal developments. It is not formal legal advice and should not be relied on for any purpose. You should not act or refrain from acting based on the information contained in this document without obtaining specific formal advice from suitably qualified advisors.

 

 

 

Copy Caterpillar – The M&S and Aldi cake wars

It is a case that is currently making headlines in the UK and dominating discussion over a cup of tea and slice of caterpillar cake.

M&S have brought a legal case against Aldi in respect of their sale of a Cuthbert the Caterpillar cake. That cake is noticeably similar to the well known and popular Colin the Caterpillar cake which has been so successful for M&S since it was first launched many years ago.  While other retailers have marketed similar cakes, such as Waitrose’s Cecil the Caterpillar, it appears that it is the low price of Aldi’s cake that has prompted the legal action by M&S.

The case brought by M&S is likely to have two separate lines of attack.

Trade Mark Infringement

Firstly, M&S are likely to allege that the Cuthbert the Caterpillar cake infringes their trade marks of the names ‘Colin the Caterpillar’ and ‘Connie the Caterpillar’ and the packaging of the Colin the Caterpillar cake.

M&S will argue that in each case the similarities in the packaging or the name are likely to lead to confusion in the market place and cause consumers to believe that the Aldi cake is associated or connected with or from the same supplier as the M&S versions.

M&S will also argue that as a result of the public awareness of the Colin the Caterpillar product, Aldi’s use of similar names and packaging take unfair advantage of the enhanced reputation which those marks may have acquired.

Passing off

M&S case also may argue that Aldi are passing off their Cuthbert cake as a Colin cake (or coming from the same source). Similar to the trade mark arguments on unfair advantage, M&S will rely on the significant reputation and consumer awareness of the Colin cake to allege that Aldi have misrepresented that their Cuthbert cake is associated with or connected to the Colin version.

M&S’s case on passing off may be stronger, as it will not be limited to the elements covered by the separate trade marks, but could include any and all similarity including the overall shape and decoration of the cake. However, they will face the task and cost of providing evidence of the reputation in those elements alone as opposed to the name and other packaging.

Aldi is well known for sailing close to the wind with its packaging, with recent spats with Brewdog and others making the news. They may seek to argue that their customers are aware of this practice and won’t be confused as to the origin of the Cuthbert cake.

It will be interesting to see how the case develops. It has already garnered a lot of media attention (which is unlikely to disadvantage either party) but any finding of infringement against Aldi could lead to an increase in challenges and cases being brought against Aldi by other food manufacturers.

For further questions please do not hesitate to contact Ross Waldram directly on rwaldram@gscsolicitors.com or 0207 822 2236.

© 2021 GSC Solicitors LLP. All rights reserved. GSC grants permission for the browsing of this material and for the printing of one copy per person for personal reference. GSC’s written permission must be obtained for any other use of this material. This publication has been prepared only as a guide to provide readers with general information on recent legal developments. It is not formal legal advice and should not be relied on for any purpose. You should not act or refrain from acting based on the information contained in this document without obtaining specific formal advice from suitably qualified advisors.

 

Government proposal for rolling in-year self-employed tax system

The Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed (IPSE), has responded to the government’s call for evidence on a new tax system for the self-employed. This system would replace annual self-assessment tax returns with a rolling in-year system. IPSE has said that although it welcomes the government’s concern with the tax experience of freelancers, there are still “unanswered questions” about the proposal that must be explored.

“First, many self-employed people’s incomes fluctuate substantially throughout the year – and while the current annual system accounts for these and ensures self-employed people pay the right rate, it is not clear how this would work with rolling in-year taxes. It is also not yet clear how this would work with late payments – which are a substantial problem for the self-employed.

Over the last decade there has been a rapid increase in the UK’s workforce working through their own businesses and becoming self-employed for many different reasons.

However, there are reports that the Treasury lose out on a significant amount of tax when you compare an employee doing the same work as a self-employed person, working on their own or through their own limited company.

What is the argument? The Treasury are losing out on tax as the self-employed are not subject to employer’s National insurance Contributions (NIC’s) as an employee’s income would.

The Chancellor is now trying to rebalance the loss of tax due to the continued increase of UK workforce working as self-employed.

Rolling out this new tax system is the best strategy to do this, as it seems. Whether this will work or not, only time will tell. No doubt that such an overhaul of the system will be extremely costly in itself.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact James Cohen directly on jcohen@gscsolicitors.com or 0207 822 2257.

© 2021 GSC Solicitors LLP. All rights reserved.  GSC grants permission for the browsing of this material and for the printing of one copy per person for personal reference. GSC’s written permission must be obtained for any other use of this material. This publication has been prepared only as a guide to provide readers with general information on recent legal developments. It is not formal legal advice and should not be relied on for any purpose. You should not act or refrain from acting based on the information contained in this document without obtaining specific formal advice from suitably qualified advisors.

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