light blue law Issue 85 Summer 2019
The Cambridgeshire and District Law Society Newsletter
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light blue law
The Cambridgeshire and District Law Society Newsletter
Tackling Conveyancing Risk head on
Information and Events Diary
Who‘s Who? Emma Bowman
Corporate Criminal Defence - What‘s the deal?
Getting ready for new standards and regulations
Navigating the challenges ahead
Law Society Symposium report
Surrogacy and DNA testing
Your Society Needs You!
Nothing stays the same: is everything changing?
Time to Celebrate!
Legacy giving myths and the Legal profession
Entrepreneur’s Relief - Update on recent changes
Finding out about care services for older people
CJLD Update / CYPG Summer Update
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PRESIDENT’s PAGE Michael Frape President CDLS
Building a stronger legal community in and around Cambridge Our objective as a local law society is to help build a stronger and more connected legal community in and around Cambridge. This city has a vibrant and dynamic economy and the legal community is already playing a significant part in supporting that growth. But there is considerable scope to develop further the collective legal offer by collaborating and sharing wisdom and skills for the benefit of all who are fit to play their part.
AstraZeneca I am delighted to announce that AZ have agreed to become corporate members of CDLS. This is wonderful news and demonstrates our commitment to reach out to the in-house legal community. There is great value in achieving better connectivity between the in-house legal community and private practice firms. Watch this space for more exciting news!
What do you want? We are actively seeking feedback from
our membership on what you want from your local law society. We are here to serve and support your interests. Please complete the online survey, which is short and simple to answer.
Diversity and Inclusion I was delighted to attend Cambridge’s first D&I round table organised by Chris Seel of The Law Society’s LGBT+ Lawyers Division. It was hosted by Birketts on 10th July. The event was well-attended with a productive discussion of current issues and challenges faced by the LGBT+ community, indicating its importance to the legal community here. This will form the first of a series of D&I round tables.
The Law Society’s Annual Legal Excellence Awards I am delighted to confirm that Anglia Ruskin University have been “passported” to The Law Society’s Annual Legal Excellence Awards to be held on 23rd October. They will compete in the “Excellence in Pro Bono” category. ARU’s “Anglia Law Clinic” won this category at our Annual Legal Excellence Awards back in March. This is the first time a winner of one of our awards has been passported to the national
event. We hope that this is a sign of things to come.
The new SRA Standards and Regulations Are you completely ready for the sweeping rule changes to the SRA Code and Accounts Rules, which will come into force on 25th November? Thought not. On 6th November we are holding a half-day seminar to help you understand and manage the changes. Weightmans and Ensors will provide the training and Hewitsons will be hosting the event.
Single Qualifying Exam From autumn 2021, there will be a common assessment for all people who want to qualify as solicitors. To help you get ready for this huge change to the qualifying process we are holding a round table on 17th October at Birketts. Alan East, who is Chair of the Education and Training Committee of The Law Society, will chair the event.
NQ and Trainee Event We look forward to celebrating the success of the new intake of trainee solicitors and NQ solicitors at a party on 26th September.
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INFORMATION Officers President Michael Frape, Ashtons Legal Vice - President Phoebe Osborne, Ashtons Legal Treasurer Ellen Cole, Greenwoods GRM
October Thursday 17th October SQE Round Table Chair – Alan East, Chair of the Education and Training Committee of The Law Society Birketts, 22 Station Rd, Cambridge CB1 2JD Registration 12.00pm Start time 12.30pm – 14.00pm
• A new set of Principles • Two new Codes of Conduct (one for solicitors and one for firms) • New SRA Accounts rules • Specific requirements for COLPs and COFAs • New ways of providing legal services including self-employed freelance solicitors • New regulatory and disciplinary procedure rules
Friday 20th March Annual Gala Dinner & Annual Legal Excellence Awards King’s College, Great Hall King's Parade Cambridge CB2 1ST
The changes mark a shift away from prescriptive rules and outcomes to a much greater emphasis on high level principles, standards and ethics. Our workshop will be relevant to all COLPs, COFAs, risk managers and solicitors (whether in private practice, in-house or unregulated businesses) and will provide practical examples of how these changes will impact you and your business and what steps you will need to take to be and remain compliant.
James Marsh Tees Law
13.30 Registration and refreshments
Oli Worth Birketts
Rebecca Austin Hewitsons
New SRA Standards
Emma Bowman Hewitsons
Richard Lane Thomson Webb & Corfield
ADMINISTRATOR Penelope Harrington CDLS
Christopher Claxton-Shirley Tees Law
& Managing the MEETINGS - COMMITTEE Wednesday 9th October 2019 5.30pm Start
Wednesday 8th January 2020 5.30pm Start
14.00 A practical review of the new Principles, codes, reporting obligations and SRA enforcement strategy - Michelle Garlick, Partner, Weightmans LLP and Andrea Cohen, Consultant, Weightmans LLP 15.30 Refreshments
Hear the latest advice on the new Standards and Regulations from Michelle Garlick and Andrea Cohen of Weightmans and Fiona Hotston Moore of Ensors.
The new SRA Accounts rules - Fiona Hotston Moore of Ensors, Chartered Accountants
Wednesday 6th November 16.45 Q&A
EVENTS 2019 September Thursday 26th September Trainee & NQ Welcome Celebration Drinks and Buffet Novi 12 Regent Street, Cambridge, CB2 1DB 18.00pm – 20.00pm
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Hewitsons, Shakespeare House, 42 Newmarket Road, Cambridge, CB5 8EP.
There is limited parking at Hewitsons, please use the Grafton Centre, which is 2 minutes walk away.
Purchase tickets through Eventbrite at https://cdlssranewstandardsregulations. eventbrite.co.uk
Registration 13.30 pm Start 14.00pm – 17.00pm On 25 November 2019, the SRA’s new Standards and Regulations will come into effect. All solicitors will have to get to grips with completely new SRA regulations, including:
COUNCIL CoLUMN Michael Frape Law Society Council Member for Cambridgeshire & Bedfordshire less than 10 years PQE), more female (over 50% of solicitors are women), more are employed in-house (20% of solicitors), and more are involved in “business law” (over 50%). Needless to say Council does not reflect those stats.
n 4th July, Simon Davis became the 175th President of the Law Society of England and Wales. Simon was for many years head of the litigation practice at Clifford Chance and has also been a member of the Law Society Council for a considerable period. Consequently, Simon has all the necessary skill sets and experience to fight the profession’s corner in the regulatory tussles ahead as well as advocating the importance of a strong and independent solicitors profession upholding the rule of law on behalf of all clients.
Law Society – Governance Review Law Society Council is conducting a governance review over the composition and structure of Council. Council was last reformed over 20 years ago and there is a need now to consider whether Council (as the Law Society’s governing body) properly and fairly reflects the profession nationally. As a generalisation, the profession has become younger (60% of solicitors are
There are 100 seats on Council. They break down into geographical seats, technical or work sector seats, and characteristic or community seats. There is a broad thrust towards a reduction in size of Council and to move away from geographical seats and towards technical or work sector seats. The proposals of the working group are set out in a paper “Future Law Society Governance review”, which I have distributed to members of my geographical seat, which is Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire. The proposals are complex and bear close consideration. If you are interested and want your views known and on what is proposed, please read the paper and contact me.
review are bound to carry weight with government. Its terms of reference are explicitly linked to the Competition and Markets Authority’s 2016 review of the legal services market, which focused on individual consumers and small businesses. That survey ignored more than half by value of the whole legal services market, which is worth £25.8bn. The review may therefore be skewed in a way which is deleterious to the profession as a whole. The Law Society is actively engaged on the process and will make representations to Professor Mayson on what reforms might be appropriate and best serve all clients and the profession itself.
Mayson Review Professor Stephen Mayson of UCL’s Faculty of Law is conducting an “Independent Review of Legal Services Regulation”. This review is independent of and not promoted by government, but Mayson is a respected voice on the legal profession generally and the findings of his www.cambslawsoc.co.uk | 7
Getting ready for new Standards and Regulations Anna Bradley SRA Chair of the Board
s we move into autumn, our focus at the SRA is increasingly on our new Standards and Regulations, which come into play on 25 November. As you are aware, the Standards and Regulations replace the current Handbook, and are a key part of our regulatory reform programme. For the last four years we have been reviewing the current Handbook. At 600 pages, we knew it was too long, too complex and too prescriptive. Lots of detailed rules micro-managing firms can actually hinder rather than help compliance, while also pushing up your costs. In developing our new approach, we have engaged with tens of thousands of people in both the profession and beyond, making changes throughout to reflect the feedback we received. The primary purpose of these new rules is to deliver a sharper focus on high professional standards, while making it easier for you to offer legal services to the public. The Standards and Regulations are significantly shorter, more tightly focussed and place greater trust in you. We have stripped out rules which we think are overly prescriptive or don’t deliver benefits for the public. Available online and featuring easy navigation and added features, the Standards and Regulations should also be easier for you to use on a day-to-day basis. We have also revamped our Account Rules. These now focus on what matters: keeping client money safe, rather than setting out lots of technical requirements about how you should run an accounts department. That means we have been able to reduce our Accounts Rules from more than 40 pages to less than ten. This less-prescriptive approach should particularly benefit those of you working in smaller firms or in areas with less immediate access to banking facilities. For example, at the moment we specify that you must
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Hello again, Cambridge and District. Thank you once more for the opportunity to talk to you all. I hope you had a good summer.
transfer any money for fees or professional disbursements within 48 hours – we know that can be particularly difficult for firms in rural areas where banks may not be readily available. So we are replacing such specific requirements with more general requirements, for example, a rule that says you need to deal with such money ‘promptly’, so you can use your professional judgement as to the best approach for your firm. The core protections linked to client money remain in place. You still need to return client money as soon as you have no need to keep it, client accounts should never be used as a banking facility and we expect you to carry out good record bookkeeping and reconcile your accounts every five weeks. And many of the core rules - including the ethical principles we expect all solicitors to adhere to – are largely unchanged. Overall our reforms should make your life easier - giving you more flexibility over how you run your business and taking away the burden of outdated and unnecessary requirements. I know change can be daunting. So we are providing lots of extra support to help you prepare for the new rules and
any new opportunities they may bring. We have already published a range of guidance and videos on the new rules on our website, designed to help you understand what the coming regulations will mean to you on a day-to-day basis. We will continue to publish more supporting materials in the run-up to November, while the Standards and Regulations will be a key theme of our Compliance Officers Conference at the end of October. To find out more and view the support materials already available visit our website at www.sra.org.uk/newregs.
The Law Society Symposium: The power of gender equality to transform the business of law
Beth Quinn Relationship Management Executive, TLS
ut the symposium- the flagship event of Christina Blacklaws’ presidencyincluded contributions from speakers who acknowledged the many obstacles that remain. In her opening remarks, Christina noted that ‘progress has been painfully slow. Change is not inevitable- we have to work relentlessly to make it possible’. Prior to the symposium, the Law Society had set out to better understand the key issues that affect women working in law. In collaboration with the International Bar Association Women Lawyers’ Interest Group and LexisNexis, the Law Society conducted the largest survey on Women in Law, reaching 7,781 respondents globally, both male and female, to identify perceived barriers to progression. Main findings showed that although women have made up over half of practising solicitors since 2018, the profession continues to be led predominantly by men. Around the globe, the senior levels of law firms do not truly reflect the reality of a profession with a significant female majority at the point of entry. Christina echoed this sentiment at the Symposium women are still ‘by no means the dominant force’. Using key findings from the survey, the Law Society hosted over 250 roundtable discussions in England and Wales and across thirteen jurisdictions, with an estimated 4,000 attendees in total. These roundtables provided the opportunity to gather lived experiences and catalyse meaningful action to address barriers to progression. The findings from these roundtables have been published in three separate reports: The need for gender equality in the legal profession: findings from the women’s roundtables; Male champions for change roundtable report; and the International women in law report. The Law Society has also published an academic literature review and a blueprint for gender balance, which sets out the main recommendations and practical steps for in-house practitioners and
‘Gender equality is good for everyone’ was the core message of an international symposium hosted by the Law Society on ‘The power of gender equality to transform the business of law’. At the event, senior leaders of the profession, politicians, activists and clients debated how to close the gender gap in the top echelons of the legal profession. private practice firms, of differing sizes, to develop strategies for gender equality.
a future project focusing on ethnic minority members in the profession.
Ideas for tackling the profession’s enduring gender problem were set out in discussions, presentations and workshops over the twoday Symposium in June, which was attended by over 300 people. Ideas were predicated on two principles: first, a clear conviction that people in positions of power and influence should act to remove obstacles to equality and use their influence to achieve equal outcomes; and second, a close focus on the leadership skills needed to achieve promotion should be fostered in all organisations.
Following the Symposium, the work around gender equality will continue with international Women in Law roundtables which will take place around the world under the umbrella of the International Women in Law (IWiL) programme. This will include Male Champions for Change roundtables and support of the Women in Law Pledge internationally.
The Symposium was used to launch a ‘Women in Law Pledge’, supported by the Law Society, Bar Council and CILEx, to tackle gender equality in the legal profession. Signatories should: have a named senior leader with accountability for gender diversity and inclusion in the organisation; set specific gender targets for leadership-level appointments; and commit to tackling discrimination and harassment. Targets and an action plan should be published and ‘specific aspects of pay, reward and recognition of the senior leadership team’ should be linked to achieving those targets. The Law Society’s Diversity and Inclusion team are also working on revising the Diversity & Inclusion Charter and
To find out more about the Law Society’s work on gender equality and to get involved please email London&SouthEastTeam@ lawsociety.org.uk
www.cambslawsoc.co.uk | 9
YOUR SOCIETY NEEDS YOU! By Richard Lane, Solicitor, Thomson Webb & Corfield
n the 138 years since the Cambridgeshire & District Law Society was formed the Legal World and Cambridgeshire have both evolved and the Society has tried to evolve to meet the needs of its members. It is important to remember that it is our Society and one of its roles has been to act as an interface between members and the national Law Society which, throughout at least the 35 years or so since I qualified has been accused as not being in touch with its members, notwithstanding its periodic campaigns to the contrary. Whilst it is hard for the Law Society to take account of the views of individual members, it does take notice of the views put forward by local Law Societies, noting that our President Michael Frape is also the Law Society Council Member for this region, and, conversely, local Law Societies can be a conduit passing information back from the Law Society. In addition, the Society can make representations or reply to consultations on behalf of its members and as our President Michael Frape is also the Law Society Council Member for this region. Thanks to everyone who responded to our recent survey. We will report on the feedback when the results have
been reviewed. If you did not receive the survey request or did not reply your views, comments, criticisms and ideas are all very welcome, at any time: please forward them to Penny (the Society’s part-time administrator): email@example.com. Alternatively, any member is welcome to attend one of our committee meetings. The more committee members we have, the more the Society can do. Reference to committee meetings brings me to my second point. To help your Society evolve and be relevant to you we need more committee members. We hold four Committee meetings each year usually lasting about 90 minutes. I find that Committee meetings are a good way to speak to other legal professionals working with different firms and in different specialisms. We are all aware of the issues affecting our specialities and it can be useful to see what is of concern to others. Members all have in common the desire to help other people and being on the committee means that you can help other members, particularly trainees or newly qualified legal professionals: it gives an opportunity to give something back and it can be fun. If you would like to help on the Committee or would like more information please contact Penny.
The Committee try to arrange events and provide things of interest to members. If we are not doing what you would like us to do, the answer is to give us your feedback and ideally join the committee to help us do what YOU want us to do. Finally, we want to encourage more members. The more members we have, the greater our voice. This makes it easier for us to attract sponsorship which in turn helps minimise the cost of events. Also, the Committee are currently looking at membership benefits, such as discounts with local organisations: again, numbers help. We currently have about 650 members whether as individual members or as individuals with corporate members but we know that there are many legal professionals who are not members. We are all very busy and it is appreciated that many would not want the additional commitment of committee meetings but if you are aware of individuals or firms who are not members perhaps you can speak to them about membership or at least pass contact details on to Penny, so that we can contact them. Please remember, Cambridgeshire & District Law Society is YOUR society.
TIME TO CELEBRATE! Trainee & NQ Welcome Celebration Evening The Cambridgeshire & District Law Society are delighted to be hosting their 4th ‘Trainee & NQ Welcome Celebration’ on Thursday 26th September. Taking place between 6.00pm – 8.00pm at the Novi, 12 Regent St, Cambridge CB2 1DB, this is a free event with drinks and a buffet being served.
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The event will be open to all trainees, and NQ’s and is a great opportunity to meet the “Local Law Society” committee and socialise in an informal setting with colleagues. We look forward to welcoming you all on the night. Please register through Eventbrite using the following link: https://cdlstraineeandnqcelebration. eventbrite.co.uk
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Entrepreneurs’ Relief update on recent changes By Fiona Hotston Moore Forensic accounting partner Ensors Chartered Accountants
p to Budget Day 2018 (29 October) the legislation for Entrepreneurs’ Relief (ER) had been largely unchanged for years and many corporate advisers would understandably have felt competent to determine the eligibility of client shareholdings to ER “from a brief glance”. Nonetheless as forensic accountants we have, over recent years, seen a steady stream of professional negligence claims arising in relation to entrepreneurs’ relief. However, the legislation changed substantially in the 2018 Budget and we now anticipate there will be significantly more potential claims arising as a result of advisers and clients failing to grasp the complexities of the new legislation. In summary, prior to the 2018 Budget, ER relief gave a favourable rate of capital gains tax at 10% on gains up to £10 million where shares are sold in a trading company or the holding company of a trading company. This is all providing, for a period of one year prior to the sale, the shares were held in the individual’s personal company and the individual held 5% of the ordinary share capital, giving 5% of the voting rights.
2018 Budget Day Changes The first change in the 2018 Budget was to extend the qualifying period from one year to two years. This change is straightforward and, whilst not anticipated, was uncontroversial. The second change caused considerable controversy. This change was to require the 5% holding in ordinary shares to entitle the shareholder to 5% voting rights plus 5% of profits available for distribution to equity shareholders, and 5% of assets available for distribution. The second requirement in italics caused huge consternation as this would catch “alphabet shares” and potentially venture capital structures and management buy outs. These shareholdings are used for commercial 12 | www.cambslawsoc.co.uk
Beware the pitfalls for the unwary adviser
reasons but do not necessarily give an entitlement to a pro rata dividend. The dividends on such shares are normally allotted to share holdings at the discretion of the Board. After much excitement, and just as we headed out for the Christmas break, the Government announced that two further options would be added which allowed ER if either the individual was entitled to 5% of profits available for distribution to the company’s equity holders and assets available on winding up or in the event of a disposal of the whole of the ordinary share capital would be entitled to 5% of the disposal proceeds based on asset valuations. This last test (in italics) should enable ER to be claimed on alphabet shares and possibly growth and ratchet shares. However, advisers need to take care in the calculations and particularly where there is sweet equity, non-commercial loans, non-cumulative preference shares and rounding differences.
take great care in checking and double checking the rights attached to every category of shares and options as well as the balance sheet values of assets and liabilities.
Other areas in the legislation which might catch out advisers are outlined below.
Personal company The individual must have been an officer or employee of the company throughout the previous 24 months. This can include Non-Executive Directors, shadow directors and part time employees. An employment contract is not essential, but it is advisable.
take care if contemplating share transfers to spouses as a gain in the addition of their annual capital gains allowance might cost a lot if ER is lost because they do not qualify for ER due to not having been an employee.
What is a trading company? In brief a trading company is one that trades and does not, to a substantial extent, carry on non-trading activities. Substantial is assumed to be over 20% and HMRC will consider a number of factors including the level of non-trading income, non-business assets held (e.g. surplus cash) and the time spent on non-trading activity. There is a 3-year window post cessation of trade when disposals can still qualify for ER.
consider and document regular reviews of the company activity and balance sheet values etc to ensure relief is not jeopardised.
Options and EMI share schemes EMI share options have beneficial ER status without the 5% test. However other options do not qualify and can dilute other shareholdings.
Earnouts Any element of the consideration which is received as an earnout could be treated as part of the purchase price or salary. If it is deemed part of the purchase price it can qualify as part of the capital gain for ER. If it is treated as part of the individual’s salary it will be taxable as income. Advisers may also need to consider the impact of share for share exchanges or bond exchanges. Earn downs may also be considered to maximise ER but care is needed re stamp duty.
seek advise from tax specialists on how any earn out or share/bond exchange is structured early in any sale negotiation.
Capital distributions including Members Voluntary Liquidations (MVL) ER continues to be available on an MVL subject, as before, to the Phoenix rules which can catch a company or business rising from the ashes.
advice from both an Insolvency Practioner and tax adviser is essential if the directors are planning to buy the assets and start up trading again.
And finally, some good news From 6 April 2019, shareholders can elect: 1) to lock in their eligible gains before a diluting act; and 2) can potentially make a further election to defer the ER taxed gain.
So, in conclusion, ER relief is far more complex than before, and advisers will no longer be able to “tell at a glance” if ER is available. Mistakes will take far longer (2 years) to correct.
Recent cases undertaken by Fiona & the Forensics team at Ensors • Professional Negligence claim against advisers on Employee Benefit Trust • National Minimum Wage assessments • Shareholder dispute on Joint Venture enterprise in energy sector • Numerous business valuations for matrimonial matters as SJE or party adviser • Employee fraud investigation • Tax advice on family disputes and matrimonial matters including regarding property portfolios • Share valuations for tax purposes For further information please contact: Fiona Hotston Moore E: firstname.lastname@example.org T: 01473 220034 W: www.ensors.co.uk/for-law-soc/ www.cambslawsoc.co.uk | 13
CJLD Update Summer 2019 Jessica Cherry Trainee Solicitor for Mills & Reeve LLP
After a busy spring, summer saw the Committee organise even more exciting events for our members. As well as social events, we have been busy planning informative sessions to help with development and support in our careers.
o far this summer, we have had our famous annual punting, picnic and prosecco event (where no one accidentally went for a dip in the Cam this year!); and a trip to the Gin and Fizz Raceday at Newmarket (where there were quite a few winning flutters!). There are many other events currently being organised for the remainder of the year, including our annual Ball in conjunction with the Cambridge Young Professionals Group, which we are all really looking forward to. This year it is going to be held at Robinson College. Do follow us on social media, or visit our website, for further information!
We have also been working with Errington Legal, a legal recruitment agency in the area, to put on talks for our members that would be of help and interest to young legal professionals. In July we had a talk on building resilience in the legal industry. This saw us learning about how wellbeing has a crucial part to play in our future success as leaders, and advice on how to be confident in situations such as considering a promotion, and awareness of mental health and managing stress. CJLD events create opportunities to make friends and have fun by bringing together junior lawyers, young professionals,
and students. If you are a Trainee, Legal Executive, Paralegal, NQ or Law student in Cambridgeshire we hope you will join us. If you would like to find out more about the CJLD or wish to become a member, please do not hesitate to contact us at cambsjld@gmail. com. We look forward to seeing you at our events soon. For detailed updates of upcoming events, please visit our website at https://cambsjld. org.uk, or check out our new social media Twitter - @CambsJLD, Facebook - cambsjld, LinkedIn – Cambridgeshire Junior Lawyers Division, and Instagram - @cambsjld.
CYPG Summer Update Charmaine Rolfe Co-Chairman of CYPG
Since our last update we have held our summer barbeque, picnic and games and punting events...
the fantastic food that had been prepared without being rained on. We chose to hold our picnic and games evening on Parker’s Piece this year and had a great turnout. Our members enjoyed a lovely picnic in the sunshine and many games of croquet and quoits.
e returned to the Granta again this year to hold our summer barbeque in June. In true British fashion we were unfortunate with the weather but that didn’t put off our members. We were able to make use of the Granta’s outdoor marquee which meant that no one was exposed to the elements and we were all able to feast on
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Our most recent event was our annual punting event with Cambridge Chauffeur Punts which we held just ahead of the August Bank Holiday weekend. We had previously arranged to hold this event the week before but due to adverse weather conditions we decided to postpone it. This was definitely the right decision as we were very lucky with the weather second time round. Our members punted themselves along the river for an hour before retreating to the Anchor for a well
deserved cold beverage. The next event in the calendar is the charity ball which we host with the Cambridgeshire Junior Lawyers Division. This year the ball will be held at Robinson College on 14th September in aid of our chosen charity, Addenbrooke’s Charitable Trust, and the CJLD’s chosen charity, Cambridge Rape Crisis. It is a masquerade ball and is guaranteed to be a glamourous evening with great music, delicious food and fantastic company. We hope to see many of you there!
Our half-year membership is still available. For those of you, who wish to become a member of CYPG for the rest of the year, please contact our Membership Secretary Danni Belbin on Danni. Belbin@mills-reeve.com.
Tackling conveyancing risk head-on
Jonny Davey Product Manager Geodesys
As every conveyancer knows, improved technology and property data have benefited the amount of property information available to conveyancers. Jonny Davey, Geodesys Product Manager, explains how a new search format is supporting greater transparency and efficiency in carrying out conveyancing due diligence.
ince 2016 we have seen a new type of property search on the market. Combined risk searches provide up to seven risk assessments(1) including contaminated land, flood, planning, ground stability, energy, transport and infrastructure. This reduces risk for all parties involved and makes it a lot easier for conveyancers to get a comprehensive picture of risk to the property.
a saving of up to 45%(2). This saving can be reflected in the price charged to the client, helping your practice remain competitive. Geodesys provides the following searches that offer an assessment of combined risk:
Combined risk searches came to market in 2016 and, since then, we have seen an 85% increase in orders for this type of report. This isn’t really a surprise as they bring together all the essential search information in one easy-to-understand format giving conveyancers an instant snapshot of overall potential risk. This saves having to plough through a lot of detail in individual reports.
Landmark Riskview Residential
Landmark Riskview Commercial
Argyll SiteSolutions Combined
Groundsure launched the Avista product in 2017 in response to conveyancers needing one definitive environmental search, including planning. Groundsure Account Manager, Nick Treble comments “Cambridgeshire represents a diverse collection of urban and rural areas, each with its own set of potential risks. 4% of the region is identified as having potentially contaminative historical land. Avista covers seven risks and intelligently filters over 106 million data points to present only the most relevant results.”
Future Climate Info Standard
Future Climate Info Premium
Future Client Info Retail
Julia Turner, Associate at Tees Law in Cambridge uses the Groundsure Avista report. She explains why it works so well for them: “The front page of the Avista search provides a summary of all risks. This immediately shows us which risks exist, the level of the risk and whether they are likely to restrict lending on the property via the Avista Action Alert. Page 2 then goes to provide an overview of the risks identified with clear next steps for the home buyer.” Combined risk searches only include key issues of concern for the home buyer, leaving out results which are within accepted standards. This saves time and printing costs. An additional benefit is that the price of a combined risk search is lower than what would be required for the individual searches. Conveyancers can make
Future Client Info Commercial
If you would like to explore the benefits of moving across to a combined report for your transactions, along with a breakdown of savings for your clients, please get in touch with Lauren Lieser on 07885 135314 or email@example.com. Notes: (1) Number of risk assessments varies according to report ordered. Groundsure Avista includes seven searches: Contaminated Land, Flood risk, Ground Stability, Energy, Enhanced Transportation, Radon and 10 years of Planning Applications. (2) Overall saving depends on searches currently ordered and choice of Combined Risk search.
www.cambslawsoc.co.uk | 15
WHO’S WHO? Emma Bowman trainee in 2015 and qualified into the real estate team in 2017. I originally studied veterinary medicine at Newnham College, Cambridge way back in the 1990s. I worked as a vet in Lincolnshire and then in Cambridge for many years and started studying law in 2012. I miss some aspects of being a vet, but I wanted a new challenge and I am certainly getting that from the law. I can’t say I miss working regular weekends and night shifts or being hissed and snapped at for my efforts. I didn’t really know what area of law I wanted to go into when I started at Hewitsons but I had enjoyed the commercial property part of the LPC and as a trainee decided it was for me. I enjoy the variety of work – we act for a wide range of clients on landlord and tenant work, acquisitions and disposals and development. As part of the planning team I also assist with planning due diligence as well as advising clients on a wide
Emma Bowman Hewitsons LLP
am a real estate and planning solicitor at Hewitsons LLP, based in the firm’s Cambridge office. I joined Hewitsons as a
range of planning matters. I work with a very friendly and supportive team at Hewitsons which allows me to pursue areas of work which interest me and to learn very quickly from my colleagues’ expertise. I learnt from working as a vet that the most important aspect of any job is the people you work with, and I am lucky to have landed on my feet here. I became a member of the CDLS committee in 2019 and look forward to hopefully being of some assistance with its many projects and activities. Outside work, my love of animals persists and as well as 4 cats I have a beautiful border terrier called Jemima. We love long walks, especially on the coast and with mandatory tea and cake afterwards. I also enjoy playing tennis to a spectacularly poor standard and binge-watching sub-titled TV series, and I am rarely far away from a book.
We always go the extra smile Providing conveyancing professionals with the service they deserve! Legal indemnity insurance for ALL types of properties and developments Unrivalled customer service The option to have your own dedicated underwriter Quick responses, speedy solutions Fully comprehensive cover, competitive premiums
Anything we can do to get that extra smile. www.gcs-title.co.uk/CS gcs-title.co.uk
Guaranteed Conveyancing Solutions Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered in England and Wales no. 3623950. Registered office: GCS House, High Street, Heathfield, East Sussex, TN21 8JD
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16 | www.cambslawsoc.co.uk
acclaimed at the 2019 ecliPse Proclaim modern law conveyancing awards Perfect Portal, a legal software business from southport proudly went home with two awards after the 2019 eclipse proclaim Modern law conveyancing awards in liverPool. founder and ceo yvonne Hirons has been hand-selected by a panel of expert judges to receive one of the most prestigious awards of the night: the outstanding achievement award. Recognised for her preeminent influence in the legal industry over the last 20 years, yvonne was described as a true inspiration, passionate about her business, her team and her clients. “We have used Perfect Portal for a long period of time now. We were with another provider prior to using the guys at Perfect Portal but within 2 minutes of speaking with Yvonne, I immediately knew I should have been with her since I started my business. She truly is a fantastic person and it is great to see how far she is pushing the boundaries with what their product can offer and do. Yvonne is always very helpful, very positive and makes it happen. I am absolutely thrilled she has been recognised in this way.” said Adam Cheal, Managing Director of Fletcher Longstaff her friends and clients at shoosmiths were delighted to see her win this award, describing her as a whirlwind of energy and her passion as infectious. most importantly, for them and their estate agents across the uK love the product, services and support that her business offers them.
a sentiment echoed by Jeremy stubbings, head of business development at cunningtons: “From day one, she has always championed continuous improvement and sought feedback from us to ensure that the services are perfect for her clients, to meet their expectations and support them in winning new business.” Starting the journey in a small town in the North West, Yvonne successfully found and grew Perfect Portal into a global business. During this event, Perfect Portal has also been Highly commended for the service Provider of the year Award. a great honour for all 14 dedicated members of the team, working in southport. this reward is focusing on the company’s ability to deliver high standards of client service, to innovate in the development of new services and implement them into the market, and foremost, its client-orientated philosophy, providing them with real benefits and support. feeling very grateful about this recognition, perfect portal was also pleased to see 6 of its own clients being rewarded that night.
For more information about the company go to www.perfectportal.co.uk
Corporate Criminal Offence – What’s the deal? Anil Arora PEM
Even with the political turmoil of Whitehall, the UK M&A market remains buoyant with continued signs of growth. A weakened pound continues to allure foreign investors to acquire UK companies across all sectors, especially those investors that are seeking to increase their market share through strategic acquisition.
ith a multitude of factors to consider and prepare for, it easy to see why recent legislative changes increasing the corporate governance burden on management, especially in respect of the new Corporate Criminal Offence (“CCO”) is not getting the attention it deserves. This article explores the new offence, the implications for UK businesses, the impact on corporate transactions and what business owners should be doing to ensure they have the necessary protections in place to make sure that a small oversight does not hinder an important deal.
Criminal Finance Act 2017 The Criminal Finance Act received Royal Assent on 27 April 2017 and introduced CCO onto the statute books from 30 September 2017. Due to a lack of publicity, there continues to be limited awareness of these rules, however, failing to take appropriate actions can have serious consequences for businesses. This legislation formally criminalises the facilitation of domestic and foreign tax evasion and holds businesses accountable for the actions of its employees and agents. Following recent requests made under the Freedom of Information Act, it has been confirmed that there are currently up to five CCO investigations underway by HM Revenue & Customs (“HMRC”) which are likely to lead to cases being brought before the courts through the Crown Prosecution Service (“CPS”). Whilst it is HMRC that are responsible for investigating cases of domestic tax evasion it is the National Crime Agency and Serious Fraud Office (“SFO”) who will be responsible for investigating cases of foreign tax evasion. The SFO have declined to comment on the number of cases it is currently investigating.
The two offences The legislation has introduced two corporate criminal offences of failure to prevent the facilitation of tax evasion (“FTP offences”): 18 | www.cambslawsoc.co.uk
1. Failure to prevent the facilitation of UK tax evasion offences (“UK FTP offence”); and 2. Failure to prevent the facilitation of foreign tax evasion offences (“Foreign FTP offence”).
At stage 2, the overseas jurisdiction must have an equivalent offence covering the associated person’s criminal act of facilitation and it must be the case that the actions of the associated person would be criminal if they took place in the UK.
How does an FTP offence occur under CCO?
Who is caught by this legislation?
There are three stages that need to be met for an FTP offence to occur: S ta g e 1 : criminal tax evasion must have taken place by a taxpayer (which could be in respect of UK or foreign taxes); S ta g e 2 : an associated person (e.g. an employee or agent acting on behalf of the organisation), whilst acting in that capacity has criminally facilitated the tax evasion; and S ta g e 3 : the organisation failed to prevent the associated person from committing the criminal facilitation act.
Extension to foreign tax evasion The Foreign FTP offence, is narrower in scope such that only relevant bodies with a UK nexus can commit this offence. Under these rules, the Foreign FTP offence can only be committed by a relevant body that is incorporated under UK law, it carries on part of its business in the UK or where the associated person is located in the UK at the time of the criminal act that facilitates the evasion of the foreign tax.
Dual criminality There is a further requirement for dual criminality at stages 1 and 2 above: At stage 1, the overseas jurisdiction must have an equivalent tax evasion offence and it must be the case that the actions carried out by the taxpayer would constitute a crime if they occurred in the UK.
The legislation has purposefully been widely drafted to encompass companies and partnerships (including LLPs). This also includes charities that have been set up as companies limited by guarantee including community interest companies, charities established either by royal charter or as charitable incorporated organisations.
Associated persons This has a deliberately wide definition which captures any individual that provides services for or on behalf of the organisation. It therefore could include: staff, sub-contractors, group companies, agents, JV partners or corporate trustees.
A criminal record? If found guilty, under these new rules there would be a public record of the organisation’s conviction and potential reputational damage. Additionally, the organisation may be subject to any or all of the following: • unlimited financial penalties; • confiscation orders or serious crime prevention orders; • exclusion from public procurement processes; and • disclosure to professional regulators.
Prevention really is the cure For HMRC to bring criminal charges against an organisation under the CCO legislation; the organisation must have failed to prevent the associated person from facilitating the tax evasion. Implementing suitable prevention measures are an essential aspect of an organisation’s defence against prosecution under these rules.
In their guidance HMRC have outlined the steps organisations need to take in order to remain compliant with this legislation which include: • Undertake a Risk Assessment of the organisation to understand where the exposures to tax evasion could occur; • Introduce controls that are Proportional to the risks identified; • Ensure Top Level Commitment from the management which should flow throughout the organisation instilling a culture which emphasises that tax evasion is not acceptable; • Conduct Due Diligence procedures as required on persons acting on behalf of the organisation; • Once policies and procedures are implemented there should Communication and Training to ensure full understanding of the new rules; and • Organisations should continue to Monitor and Review the risks they face and update their policies and procedures as required. It is worth noting that the implementation of the required procedures were never intended to be cumbersome and organisations were not expected to consider every conceivable risk. The relevant body should prepare policies and procedures
that are proportionate to its risk profile. If, following the risk assessment the organisation considers it has a low risk profile and its existing policies are sufficient to catch the identified risks, the organisation can decide it does not need to introduce new procedures. In such circumstances, this decision should still be documented and evidenced as part of the organisation’s defence against prosecution.
Impact on corporate transactions Despite continued M&A activity, investors are understandably cautious and want to ensure that a target acquisition has not unduly increased its risk profile for lack of compliance or poor corporate governance. Failure to comply with the requirements of this new CCO legislation will be identified as part of the due diligence process. Confirmation of corporate governance compliance is now a standard feature of SPAs, so failure to take action now could impact the success of a transaction. A worst case scenario could stop the deal in its tracks or potentially reduce the purchase price and / or increase amounts held in escrow.
consider undertaking and documenting a comprehensive risk assessment that will form the basis of any defence against prosecution under CCO. If appropriate, this review should be complemented with the implementation of policies and procedures which demonstrate the organisation’s commitment to preventing the facilitation of tax evasion. PEM have assisted a number of organisations to undertake the risk assessment and to draft clear written policy documentation to ensure compliance with this legislation. We also work with our corporate finance team to ensure that CCO compliance is addressed as part of the grooming process for a deal. If you have any further questions regarding any of the issues raised in this article, please do not hesitate to contact Anil Arora (firstname.lastname@example.org).
What should organisations be doing? All organisations should make themselves aware of this new area of law and
www.cambslawsoc.co.uk | 19
Navigating the challenges ahead By Brian Boehmer Partner, Lockton Companies LLP
The PII renewal season is now fully underway and the forecasted challenges suggested by many are seemingly coming to fruition. With only three weeks until a number of practices renewal dates will be upon them, I wanted to share with you some of the reasoning why there is a challenging marketplace but most importantly measures that can be implemented to weather the impact of the current market conditions. A number of factors are influencing the prevailing market conditions, but the two most impactful are: Lloyd’s of London financial performance showed that between 2016 and 2018 60% of syndicates were unprofitable and underperforming. This identified non US PII as the second worst performing class of insurance within Lloyd’s and corrective measures are taking place. Many syndicates have reduced capacity, and have implemented rate increases throughout 2019; when you combine these two factors, it results in many of the syndicates having a limited new business appetite or ability for growth.
Claims An increase in claims severity - with multiple loses breaching the compulsory primary layer of insurance. The most sizeable claims emanating from the following areas of practice: • Commercial Work • Depositor Funded developments • Escalating Ground Rent provisions • Litigation • Wills and Probate • Cyber Crime A number of these practice areas have generated losses that have impacted both primary and the first excess layer insurers which could have a bearing on some insurers’ rates. The claims activity has resulted in a significant reduction in the number of insurers willing to provide coverage for the first excess layer above the compulsory primary layer, premiums for this layer of insurance have increased from what they were last year. At the start of the article, I had promised guidance on the measures that can be 20 | www.cambslawsoc.co.uk
implemented to weather current market conditions. Despite the challenges, I am pleased to advise that practices can still make a difference to the impact upon them providing that Insurers are presented with a detailed presentation and crucially they are supported by some expert broking.
Additional and unnecessary links in the chain distance your practice from the underwriter and insurer. It can create unnecessary delays in the process and could result in your message to insurers being diluted. The more people in the process can mean increased premiums or that you do not get appropriate service.
Throughout this current renewal period, we continue to witness that those active insurers wish to align themselves with good businesses. It is therefore important that you take a proactive approach to demonstrate this to insurers. Whether you have submitted your proposal or are in the midst of doing so, you are still able to make a difference, if you have submitted your forms, there is nothing stopping you adding to what has been provided. You can make a difference by following these steps:
Experience and expertise Work with a broker, who has an understanding of the legal profession and the ability to appropriately articulate your practice to insurers. Choose a broker who can guide your practice and provide appropriate advice to you on policy and issues that may affect you. Furthermore, whilst no practice wishes to experience claims, you may wish to select a representative that has the appropriate resources and expertise to help you, when you will need it most should the need arise.
Distinguish yourself from the crowd - As a proposal form generally provides the numeric data that an insurer can use to load up their pricing tool. It is the softer facts about your practice along with some expert broking that provide them with the necessary ingredients to deviate away from their technical pricing with this in mind, it would be prudent to provide a foreword about your practice. This may include, a brief history how you have got to where you are today, the management and structure of the practice, your client base, along with your approach to quality control and risk management it is however important to be proud of the accomplishments of your practice. It is likely you will be vying for the attention of underwriters with hundreds of your peers in a short space of time. With this in mind, it is important to provide a quality presentation that provides the underwriters with a good insight and understanding of your practice.
Select the right representative for your firm Direct access to leading insurers It is incredibly important to prevent unnecessary links in the chain. Ignoring the delays that this may create in the event of a claim materialising, the immediate issue could well be in the forthcoming negotiation.
Completion of your proposal form – do so with utmost care and attention, ensuring that your work split adds up to 100% and that you answer all the applicable questions. If any question specifically requests additional or supporting information, please make sure that you provide this. If a yes or no answer does not quite work for your practice and the way that you do things, please make clear reference and provide further explanation. Wherever possible complete the proposal form on a computer to ensure that it is legible and easy for an underwriter to understand. Claims information - Provide updated claim summaries even if you have had no claims as insures will require this information to satisfy their underwriting file. Your representative should be able to obtain these for you with your writing permission. If you have had claims or there are open reserves then an overview of what happened, and what lessons have been learned to prevent these from occurring in the future. If you have notifications open with no reserves, provide your view on both merit and quantum. If you want a second opinion, please do not hesitate to contact me or a member of the Lockton Solicitors team who will be very happy to help. Tel: 0207 933 2083/ E: brian.boehmer@ uk.lockton.com
Playing our clientsâ€™ tune since 1966.
Over 97% of our clients renew with us. Lockton has been proudly independent for over 50 years. With no shareholders to answer to, our clients always come first. And when clients come first, they tend to come back.
Get in touch with a member of the Lockton Solicitors team today to explore your options for Professional Indemnity insurance ahead of renewal.
T: 0330 123 3870 E: Solicitors@uk.lockton.com Lockton Companies LLP. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. A Lloydâ€™s broker. Registered in England & Wales at The St Botolph Building, 138 Houndsditch, London, EC3A 7AG. Company No. OC353198.
www.cambslawsoc.co.uk | 23
The rise of surrogacy and the need for DNA testing S
urrogacy is now often in the news, fueled by both our celebrity culture and by increasing awareness of the possibilities afforded by a plethora of new technologies in assisted reproduction. In fact, surrogacy is part of ‘fertility tourism’ where couples or individuals choose to travel to other jurisdictions with a view to accessing services which may be prohibited, not available or too expensive in their native land. Such treatments are reported to number between 20,000 and 25,000 events per annum worldwide.
In terms of fertility tourism, the current preferred destinations are those where jurisdictions permit ‘paid for’ gestational surrogacy and the intended parents can gain legal rights over the child. This may either be by gaining direct parental rights or by making use of streamlined adoption procedures. It is the case that DNA testing is often required by the home authorities to prove the parentage of one or both of the donors after overseas surrogacy, by use of either a paternity or maternity DNA test, or both.
authorities in the Ukraine, Russian Federation and US has already helped many childless UK couples and the law is highly favourable towards surrogacy in these jurisdictions. For intending parents wishing to go down this route, then appointment of an experienced UK based solicitor and an accredited DNA testing company is essential.
The desire for a child has developed into a significant business sector and with differing international moral/ethical perspectives, the law has evolved quite differently in different cultures, where attitudes towards surrogacy vary from altruism to pure commerciality.
The Ukraine, Russia and Georgia have liberal laws regarding commercial surrogacy (including for foreigners) and are the current destinations of choice. Indeed, many UK couples are choosing the Ukraine2 since:
To discuss DNA testing for a surrogacy case, please call 0191 543 6334 or e-mail: email@example.com.
There are several reasons why couple may choose the surrogacy option, including; a) couples who cannot, for whatever reason, have their own children, b) same sex couples desirous of a biological relationship with a child or perhaps more rarely, c) by social choice. In the UK the woman who carries the child and subsequently gives birth to the child is seen as the child’s legal mother. If this surrogate is married or in a civil partnership, their spouse could also be a legal parent of the child. In England at least, surrogacy contracts are not capable of legal recognition, which means the arrangements entered into under a compensated (reasonable expenses only) surrogacy are no more than informal agreements that rely on trust for their execution on both sides. For the legal rights of the child to be transferred from the surrogate to the intended parents (who commissioned the surrogate - notwithstanding that at least one of them may have a biological relationship to the child), an application for a parental order1 will need to be made within six months of the child’s birth. In doing so, the applicants are asked if they are “a genetic parent of the child”, a fact that can only be established be use of a DNA test which is conducted by an MoJ accredited provider, such as Complement Genomics and dadcheckgold. 24 | www.cambslawsoc.co.uk
• The intended parents of the child are considered to be the biological parents from the conception • The intended parents are specifically named on the birth certificate to the exclusion of the surrogate mother or any donor • The surrogate mother cannot by law keep the child after birth
Nicola Lowes, LLM and Neil Sullivan, MBA, LLM, PhD www.dadcheckgold.com
Complement Genomics Ltd, the provider of the dadcheckgold service, is accredited by the Ministry of Justice as a body that may to carry out parentage tests as directed by the civil courts of England and Wales under section 20 of the Family Law Reform Act 1969. Notes 1 Form C51: Application for a Parental Order (Section 54 Human Fertilization and Embryology Act 2008).
• A donor or surrogate mother has no parental rights over the child and no adoption of the child is required
Article 123 of the Ukrainian Family Code (as amended 22/12/2006, No 524-V) and Orders 24 and 771 of the Health Ministry of Ukraine.
• There are no restrictions on the payments.
TYPES OF SURROGACY
The written and informed consent of all parties and a notarised surrogacy agreement is required (and which can be complex), plus there is the presumption that the intended parents are married, so a translated and notarised copy of the marriage certificate is also necessary. For British parents using a surrogate in the Ukraine it is often more convenient to locally obtain a UK passport for the child once born, although proof of the genetic relationship to one or both of the intended parents is generally necessary. This can be arranged by contacting us using the details at the end of this article. The progressive approach of the
'Traditional' surrogacy involves insertion of sperm into the Fallopian tube of the surrogate mother, who by virtue of using her own egg, is the biological mother of the child. 'Gestational' surrogacy, often referred as in vitro fertilization (IVF), involves implantation into a surrogate of an externally fertilized embryo where the intended parents provide the biological material and of the egg and sperm both, either or neither of which maybe from a donor. Importantly, the child and surrogate mother are biologically independent of one another.
Mr Andrew Wojcik md, frcs Consultant Spinal Surgeon
Speciality • Spinal deformity • Degenerative disorders • Microsurgery of the intervertebral disc • Spinal decompression stabilisation and fusion • Spinal trauma
Tel: 01480 418761 Fax: 01480 423109 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.cambslawsoc.co.uk | 25 Untitled-1 1
Nothing stays the same; is everything changing? Who was it that said that the only constant in this world is change? Well that certainly seems true at the moment. Political, economic, social and technological factors continue to have a significant impact on society. And what better forum to consider these than this years’ annual conference? We have a great line up for you again this year. Our Chair, Sir Martin Spencer, will be donning his judicial cap and telling us what he believes is the challenge for experts in 2019. Continuing our conference theme, The Rt Hon Lady Justice Nicola Davies and His Honour Judge Richard Roberts will be joining a panel discussion to further explore these issues; including the impact of artificial intelligence on the judicial system, the importance of vetting (in the light of the Andrew Ager case), and what Brexit may mean for expert witnesses. We’ll hear from Chris Easton who will be
discussing the role of the Single Joint Expert and how to make it work for both experts and instructing parties. We are also pleased to welcome David Marshall (Vice Chair of the Civil Justice Council fixed costs in clinical negligence working group) who will be providing an update on fixed costs, Kenny Shealey (National Legal Aid Training Co-Ordinator and Senior Law Costs Draftsman) who will be explaining how to make sure we are paid when the client has legal aid, and we’ll also hear again from His Honour Judge Richard Roberts who will be talking about the new disclosure rules affecting experts and costs budgeting for experts. We have some great exhibitors as usual and are particularly pleased to welcome Redwood Collections as our lead sponsors for the event. Redwood Collections as their first Supplier Partner which is a new scheme recognising organisations who supply goods and services
Amanda Stevens EWI Annual Conference Chair
to the Expert Witness community. They offer a complete portfolio of debt collection services ranging from sensitive mediation through to legal and insolvency action and as part of the partnership, will be offering EWI members a discounted commission rate of 10% commission (typically 15%). You’ll also have the chance to meet the Governors as well as network with other experts, instructing parties and senior members of the judicial system at break times and during our evening drinks reception. It has never been more important to have a credible voice for expert witnesses, highlighting the critical role they play in our justice system. So please do come along and join your fellow colleagues for what promised to be an interesting day of discussion and debate. To find out more and book your place visit: http://bit.ly/EWIAC2019
the hampden consultancy Building services (mechanical & electrical) consulting engineers Expert witnesses / Expert advisers / Expert assessors
ince 1993 we have specialised in assisting clients in resolving technical and contractual problems with respect to mechanical & electrical engineering services that can (and often do!) occur on many construction projects, whether during the pre-contract or construction phases, or indeed post-contract.
Expert witness reports can be provided by surveyors on a variety of issues. They are normally required in connection with disputes for use as evidence to identify the facts of the case. Matters covered by the reports could include value, building defects or boundary matters. Often the report will be confined to the provision of a written statement or report but in some cases could include giving oral evidence in a court. In most cases the report will be prepared in accordance with Part 35 of the Civil Procedure Rules and for the benefit of the Court. It can be provided for either party to a dispute but sometimes the surveyor will be appointed jointly by the parties.
As such we have been retained either as expert advisers, party-appointed experts or as single joint experts in respect to disputes between building owners/end-users & their contractors or between contractors & their subcontractors concerning technical and/or contractual aspects related to mechanical & electrical engineering services. We have also acted for clients in issues involving professional negligence of M&E consulting engineers.
The surveyor will take a completely independent view as his duty is to the Court rather than either party. The report will follow the RICS Practice Statement & Guidance Note “Surveyors Acting as Expert Witness”.
Please call Bob Swayne EngTech AMIHEEM for an initial discussion without obligation on 01494868868 or 07768497005 or visit our website on www.thehampdenconsultancy.com for more details.
153 St Neots Rd, Hardwick, Cambridge CB23 7QJ 01223 955339 email@example.com wardhoward.co.uk
26 | www.cambslawsoc.co.uk
The Hampden Consultancy.indd 1
Expert Chartered Surveyors for Cambridge and the surrounding area
Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, ii Guercino (Italian, 1591-1666) Portrait of an Italian Cane Corso. Sold March 2018
Fine Art Valuation & Advisory Service Established in 1825, Cheffins is one of the countryâ€™s leading firms of independent Fine Art Auctioneers and Valuers, providing a confidential and professional service for private clients, executors of estates, solicitors and banks. We provide written valuations for insurance, inheritance tax, rental, gift and sale purposes. Our specialist valuers work across the country.
For more information contact Emily Partington on 01223 213343 or firstname.lastname@example.org Fine Art, Clifton House, 1-2 Clifton Road, Cambridge, CB1 7EA. cheffins.co.uk/fine-art
If you’re using any Drainage and Water report other than the CON29DW…
Good luck. A CON29DW uses all known water company information, including both free and paid-for data. This ensures that the FULL picture on drainage and water is presented. The Geodesys CON29DW presents the information in plain language; provides useful detail; includes two high-quality Ordnance Survey maps (one for water and one for waste and drainage); and uses an interactive format to make it easy for you to retrieve relevant information. Some Drainage and Water reports simply infer answers from the proximity of the pipes nearby, rather than checking the billing and connectivity data that the water company holds. Or they can ignore water company data, such as the information on whether a property is at increased risk of internal flooding. The lack of an answer to this question is often covered by insurance in some reports. Whatever the example, the home buyer, lender and conveyancing solicitor are all exposed to risk.
When it’s your reputation on the line, do you really want to leave it to luck?
It’s your call…
CON29DW from Geodesys.
No inferring, no ignoring, no insuring. Assessing drainage and water risk can be a tick-box exercise, but with the CON29DW you’re guaranteed a factual, reliable and secure approach. It’s a choice that impacts three separate, but connected, parties in the home buying process:
The lender Lenders need to focus on property risk as well as applicant risk – and a key concern is drainage and water. The CON29DW answers all 23 drainage and water questions from the Law Society, covering areas such as connections, pipe and drain locations, and risk of internal flooding. Other reports can infer and ignore answers, using insurance to cover the risk.
The conveyancer If a less than full picture of the property leads to drainage or water issues, a law firm’s PI insurance usually covers any remedial work – but it can’t cover the time and effort required, nor any damage to reputation. Plus the homeowner may have to carry out costly work in the future.
The CON29DW from Geodesys offers the following key features: • a crystal-clear front-page customer dashboard • clear identification of potential issues • easy-to-use interactive navigation • two formats: interactive PDF and usual print format • thorough information on drainage and water legislation • a ‘plain English’ guide • a modern design created by industry
The home buyer Whether a dream house, a desperately needed upgrade or a first-time purchase, complex drainage and water problems are a major setback for any homeowner. Even if covered by insurance, there’s still the pain of sorting out an issue that could have been identified before – and the buyer may not have gone ahead if they’d known. Call: 0800 085 8050 Email: email@example.com www.geodesys.com/con29dw-goodluck
LEGAL PROFESSION CALLED ON TO ADDRESS LEGACY GIVING MYTHS THIS SEPTEMBER This September, 200 charities will come together with 1,300 solicitors and Will-writers to challenge the public’s biggest misconceptions about gifts in Wills for Remember A Charity in your Will Week (9-15 September 2019). In the build-up to the Week, Remember A Charity is calling on legal professionals to become campaign supporters, committing to help clients understand more about legacy giving and the relevant tax breaks. Resources will be provided for campaign supporters, including posters that encourage people to ‘pass on something wonderful’ by leaving a gift in their Will.
there is often a disconnect between the 40% that intend to leave a gift in their Will and the 6% of people that currently do so. There remains far greater potential for raising vital funding for good causes through charitable bequests and the support of the legal profession in reminding clients of the option of including a charity in their Will has never been more important.”
Charitable bequests currently fund two out of three guide dogs, 6 out of 10 RNLI lifeboat rescue launches and almost 1 third of Macmillan’s income.
To find out more or take part in Remember A Charity Week, visit www.rememberacharity.org.uk
Rob Cope, director of Remember A Charity, says: “Raising more than £3 billion for good causes annually, legacies are a critical source of funding for charitable services across the country. “Solicitors have such a key role in helping the public understand the full range of options available to them when writing their Will, with research showing that even a simple reference to the opportunity of legacy giving can double the number of bequests made.”
The Psychiatry Research Trust
The Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN)
He continues: “Here in the UK, we have one of the most flexible will-writing environments in the world with generous tax breaks for legacy giving. Remember A Charity Week is a fantastic opportunity to get the conversation started and build understanding about how it all works.” This year’s campaign will address the most prominent myths and barriers that can prevent people from leaving a gift in their Will. This will include addressing concerns that legacies have to be particularly large, that they are complex to arrange and that they might prevent people from passing on their estate to their families. Awareness of legacy giving on the rise Now in its tenth year, Remember A Charity Week shifts its focus from raising awareness to building understanding of legacy giving among the public, with the most recent consumer tracking studies indicating that only 10% of the over 40s are unaware of the opportunity to leave a bequest in their Will. 40% of those surveyed said that they would be happy to donate in this way, up from 35% a decade previously. During that time, charities’ annual legacy income has grown from around £1.8bn to £3bn. Cope adds: “Appetite for legacy giving continues to grow, but 30 | www.cambslawsoc.co.uk
The Psychiatry Research Trust (PRT) was set up by a Trust Deed dated 20th January 1982. It raises funds for research into all aspects of mental illness and brain disorder undertaken at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience and its associated Bethlem Royal and Maudsley Hospitals, and has a special interest in developing the researchers of tomorrow. The Trustees have been selected to provide a broad background of expertise in the fields of financial management, academic, psychiatric and neurological research and fundraising.
Psychiatry Research Trust PO 87 16 De Crespigny Park London SE5 8AF Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Telephone: (+44) 020 7703 6217 www.psychiatryresearchtrust.co.uk
01379 641715 www.songbird-survival.org.uk
pLease remember songbird survivaL in your wiLL songbird survivaL (sbs) is an independent charity which funds research into the alarming decline in britainâ€™s much loved songbirds. with your support we hope to raise awareness of the plight of song and other small birds, research the causes of their decline, and promote solutions to restore songbird numbers. Leave a Lasting Legacy Every legacy, large or small, is important to us and a gift in your will help us to continue our vital research. Your gift will help to commission scientific research into the causes of songbird decline and advance public education in the science of ornithology â€“ in particular the study of song and other small birds, promote conservation of natural and semi-natural habitats and the restoration of habitats in which song and other small birds live. every gift received wiLL heLp make a cruciaL contribution to our important work. Why not start your Will online? Visit our Website or phone us noW to discuss your requirements.
Songbird Survival.indd 1
www.cambslawsoc.co.uk | 31
ABLE COMMUNITY CARE How Do You Find Out About Care Services for Older People?
Older people, single, having no children, having children, it makes no difference. When a crisis occurs and knowledge about the care sector is needed, the amount of information that people of all ages have is sadly lacking. The result being that when an older member needs care support, the usual situation is that no one knows much about the Bypractical Angela Gifford subject or the realities of accessing an appropriate service. How Do You Find Out About Care Services for Older People? MD, Where and who you go toCare for help and information? Social Services both in Social Care and Health are the natural Abledo Community link to information. Many social workers are part time, many have large caseloads and with an increasing number of whoseeking protects them? What questions youare live, urban or rural, willthat mean lder having olderpeople, peoplesingle, needing care,nomore socialwhere workers needed. It is a fact many and people information from should you ask a care provider? What there may or may not be local voluntary children, having children, it makes social services are not given comprehensive information.
should you look for and ask about when organisations that can help and give out no difference. When a crisis occurs The local GP Surgery maysector offer some local care information but are not usually a resource Thecare emergence of visiting acentre. potential home? What, helpful information. and knowledge about the care Hubs the which contain a range of health professionals and related staff are more likely to be able to offer help and if any, disability equipment might be is needed, amount of information guidance, but these are nationwide service Depending where you live, urbanwhat or rural, will mean needed; is available andthere how do I Access bases. to the internet canon provide that people of all ages have is not sadly may orresult may not be that localwhen voluntary can help However, and give out helpfulmake information. contact to enquire? a wealth ofthat information. lacking. The being an organisations knowing where to look, what to look for older member needs care support, the Access to the internet can provide a wealth of information. However, knowing where to look, what to look for is not There have been in the past ‘One Stop is not necessarily straightforward. Some usual situation is that no one knows necessarily straightforward. Some telephone helplines are good sources of information, but you have to know who Shops’ or similar which were information telephone helplines are good sources of much about the subject or the practical they are and what the number is! points, but with reducing funding in the information, but you have to know who realities of accessing an appropriate usually had short lives. they are and what the number is! service. The common phrase ‘You don’t know what you don’t know’ is particularly relevantsector, whenthese seeking practical solutions
to a care situation. Why is this?
What is needed is for a Minister of The common phrase ‘You don’t know Where and who do you go to for Unlike trying to persuade people to give up you smoking, exercise, to reduce weight, etc there arethe noScottish public funded Aging (akin to Minister what don’t to know’ is particularly help and information? Social Services advertisements giving guidance comes practical to the aspects of carefor forOlder olderPeople people. There are no to be and Equalities) relevantwhen whenitseeking both in Social Care and Health are theand direction comprehensive, roadmap leaflets pharmacies, health centres resource centres. appointed with specific directions to solutions to a care situation. Why isor this? natural link to information. Many social in libraries, tackle the problem of an increasing workers are part time, many have large Care must be paid for, who pays and who does not, what are the eligibility criteria? Where do you look to find the number of older people. Older people Unlike trying to persuade people to caseloads and with an increasing number appropriate care needed? A person needs care, what are their legal rights and who protects them? What questions and families do have the ability to give up smoking, to exercise, to reduce of older people needing care, more should you ask a care provider? What should you look for and ask about when visiting a potential home? What, arrange, procure,care ask questions, make weight, etc there are no public funded social workers are needed. It is a fact if any,people disability equipment might be needed; what is available and how do I makedecisions contact to enquire? about care services but they advertisements giving guidance and that many seeking information do need the tools to enable them in to do it comes theinformation aspects from There social services areinnot have been thegiven past ‘One Stopdirection Shops’ orwhen similar which to were points, but with reducing funding so. This should be a priority, would be of care for older people. There are no comprehensive information. the sector, these usually had short lives. cost effective and practical. comprehensive, roadmap leaflets in is may for aoffer Minister of Aging (akin to the Scottish Minister for Older People and Equalities) to be libraries, pharmacies, health centres or TheWhat local is GPneeded Surgery with specificbut directions to tackle the problem olderCommunity people. Older people Care offersand resource centres. of an increasing number of Able some appointed local care information are nationwide Live-in Care Services not usually a resource centre. The families do have the ability to arrange, procure, ask questions, make decisions about care services but they do needand weand canpractical. answer many of your questions Care must paid for, whobe pays and emergence of Hubs whichthem contain a so. This should the tools to enable to do be a be priority, would cost effective about care today. range of health professionals and related who does not, what are the eligibility Ablemore Community offers nationwide Live-inWhere Care Services and we can the answer many of your questions about care criteria? do you look to find staff are likely to Care be able to offer today. Call us but on 01603 764567 our websitecare www.ablecommunitycare.com Call us on 01603 764567 or visit our needed? A person help and guidance, these are not or visitappropriate website www.ablecommunitycare.com needs care, what are their legal rights nationwide service bases. Depending on
Angela Gifford. MD of Able Community Care Ltd
Live-in Care Because the choice to stay in your own home with your own front door is priceless. www.ablecommunitycare.com
32 | www.cambslawsoc.co.uk
For a free brochure on any of our professional care services call us today on 01603 764567 email@example.com
Registered Charity number 264221
e are a UK charity providing a fantastic selection of high-quality audiobooks to some 50,000 people across the UK who ﬁnd it diﬃcult or impossible to read due to an illness, disability, learning or mental health diﬃculty. We charge a membership fee to only half of our members- those who feel they can make some contribution and that is heavily subsidised. The other half need to be fully funded. Listening Books receives no central government funding whatsoever and very little local government funding. The reality is that Listening Books simply could not survive without the generous support of sponsors and the active co-operation of publishers. Whether you have already written your will or are thinking about writing one in the near future, we ask that you consider leaving a legacy to Listening Books. Your legacy will make a vital diﬀerence to the lives of our members for years to come.
CALL US NOW on 020 7407 9417 or email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
www.listening-books.org.uk/Legacies 12 Lant Street, London SE1 1QH
Listening Books.indd 1
PATRON: PROFESSOR DAVID J. BELLAMY OBE
Company Limited by Guarantee (England and Wales) No. 07541800. Registered Charity No. 1140830
For tortoise, terrapin and turtle care and conservation. The British Chelonia Group
works to promote good husbandry of tortoises, terrapins and turtles kept in captivity in the UK. It publishes care sheets, six newsletters a year and a scientific journal, and arranges symposia and other meetings around the country. The group also takes an active part in worldwide projects that support chelonian conservation, by raising funds through annual appeals. Membership and General Enquiries The BCG’s Registered Address: New Barn Farmhouse, Toft Road, Kingston, Cambs. CB23 2NS
www.cambslawsoc.co.uk | 33
Fridays at quill By Julian Bryan Managing Director, Quill
nd in other areas of law, legal cases don’t stop, court hearings or trials aren’t cancelled, and contracts don’t change their completion date just because it’s Friday. For anyone operating in law, Friday is as hectic as any other week day. For Quill, the last day every week has an even greater focus on compliance. Of course, our Interactive legal accounts software warns users of potential breaches at any time with exclamation marks denoting missing e-chit information, confirmation notifications for tasks that cannot be later undone and other system prompts for incorrect entries. However, on Fridays, our Pinpoint outsourced legal accounting service cashiers ensure any compliance issues are highlighted, reported and resolved. When you consider the plethora of problems that fall into the non-compliance category – from data loss and delayed payment processing to incorrect allocation of client monies into the wrong account and missed deadlines, plus everything in between – and bear in mind the volume of clients we currently service – 8,000 users altogether – you could be forgiven for thinking this an impossible task. In actual fact, by having robust systems in place and applying a disciplined approach, we’re able to address our clients’ compliance obligations successfully every Friday, without fail. As already intimated, for clients using Interactive, there are all manner of easyto-use features to support fee earners progressing matters, for cashiers to efficiently manage finances according to the stringent demands of the SRA’s legal accounts rules and HMRC’s Making Tax Digital legislation, and for compliance officers to generate compliance exception reports for rectification or reporting to the relevant regulatory body. Interactive is subject to an extensive software development roadmap with a strong focus on legal accounting enhancements. We notify
34 | www.cambslawsoc.co.uk
Nothing slows down on Fridays at Quill – or indeed in many places within the legal profession. We all know that Friday busyness is typified in the conveyancing sector when exchanges take place, dictated by most house buyers’ preference to move home at the end of the week. clients of these new and improved tools via our monthly e-newsletters and ‘What’s new’ button located in our software’s top toolbar. In the past few months alone, we’ve upgraded functionality for associated ledgers for cases, e-chit/bank integration, MTD input and output screens, batch accounts postings, ‘keep’ options to avoid data input repetition, authorise and maintain screen additions, and multiple developments to both detail and summary accounts-specific reports. All of these software improvements are designed to simplify and strengthen your compliance procedures thereby making your Friday tasks that much more manageable. For clients using Pinpoint, we send a weekly batch of reports showing ledger balances for client and office accounts, unpaid bills and breaches. These reports act as a prompt for clients to tie up any loose ends by authorising payments and correcting breaches which are still outstanding. Our reports also streamline the process of recording failures and preparing reports on material breaches in the right format for the SRA, CLC or Law Society of Scotland. These important checks are actioned by our Pinpoint cashiers each Friday. As our cashiers work in teams of six, headed up by a supervisor, it’s then our supervisors’ role to oversee the accurate production and prompt delivery of these reports, and act as an escalation point for any ensuing queries. We take our responsibilities very seriously because it’s all part-and-parcel of providing a regulatory-compliance-guaranteed service. Aside from these typically Friday reporting jobs, a normal day for our cashiers comprises liaising with clients, completing bank reconciliations, processing day-to-day transactions, gathering information for month end and subsequently completing month end closures as well as posting legal aid submissions and sending VAT returns at quarter end to HMRC via MTD. By acting in the cashier role on behalf of our clients, the only requirement for Pinpoint users is to log daily e-chits of inbound and
outbound monies, and record fee earning activity and disbursements. We do all the rest. By lessening your workload, your Fridays are certain to be stress-free, at least from an accounting and compliance perspective anyway. Because of our unique provision of both Interactive and Pinpoint in tandem, our portfolio is superior quality in relation to other legal accounts software and cashiering service suppliers. That’s because it’s a common platform used by our cashiers and there’s a plethora of management information intelligence drawn from this one central software platform by our supervisors. And, as noted earlier, we’re also constantly researching new ways to improve our products further still. It’s these ongoing software enhancements, defined in our aforementioned roadmap, which go a long way to streamlining clients’ and Quill’s processes. Late Friday afternoon, to salute another successful week fulfilling our compliance requirements, the beer fridge is opened so everyone can have a quick drink before heading home for the weekend. This is one of the many employment perks at Quill. It’s a nice way to mingle with our colleagues in a relaxed atmosphere, celebrate a job well done with some paid-for-by-Quill refreshments, and look forward to two days of rest and recuperation by starting the weekend an hour early. After a typical Friday, it’s well deserved. To discover more about Quill, please visit www.quill.co.uk, email email@example.com or call 0161 236 2910.
Julian Bryan joined Quill as Managing Director in 2012 and was also the Chair of the Legal Software Suppliers Association from 2016 to 2019. Quill has been a leading provider of legal accounting and case management software, and the UK’s largest supplier of outsourced legal cashiering services, to the legal profession for over 40 years.
Practice management & accounts software
Outsourced cashiering using Interactive
Outsourced cashiering on any software
Outsourced payroll service
Outsourced bookkeeping service
Outsourced typing service
Donâ€™t puzzle - choose Quill 0845 226 2587 firstname.lastname@example.org quill.co.uk
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